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Excited about TC4C and air roaster
JimG
Hi, folks. Sorry for the recent communications and circuit-production blackout. I've just completed a round of races (a couple of half-marathons and a 5K) which required some travel and training. I thought I would be able to get caught up with building circuit boards before getting tied up with travel and running, but it didn't work out.

I am working on the circuit board backlog right now and everyone who has ordered something and not received it will get a ship notice by midweek.

Jim (who is old enough to know better, but still likes running around cities with "real" runners)
clif123
Jim,

Thank you for giving us some feedback. I'm fine with it taking more time as long as I know that everything is OK. Thank you for supporting the DIY community.
BadHabitRoasters
I too am excited about monitoring and controlling my new roaster. I am just wanting to know that my order is being processed and wondering if I should have heard something by now. I too appreciate what Jim and everybody else who has supported the TC4 development has done!!! This is really just asking if the order is in process as I have not heard anything since I placed my order for a TC4 and an LCD adapter kit on 5/18/13. Just checking and hope your running around cities with real runners is/went well.

Badhabitroasters
clif123
I have mine now but am in the middle of another hardware project this weekend. I'll report back once I get the board working with the roaster.
happycat
No word back yet for me. I ordered May 7. I hope he's ok and not suffering from all that running.

My non-TC4C roasting is pretty haphazard. I killed one thermometer already so I try to stretch it out to 9 minutes pulsing the heater of my popper on and off while the fan runs, then I give it 100% heat until I hear first crack... then let it go either for a bit or until the first crackles of second crack.

I'd like to get more out of my beans though. I think my last batch went too far and I lost the acidity. I'm hoping the TC4C will help me roast more balanced coffee, particularly for siphon use.
happycat
For anyone else looking for a temporary stopgap... I got a router speed controller recently during a visit to my dad. He had an extra in his workshop. This can be used to adjust the power going into the heating coil.

While i don't have any computerized control or temps, I have been able to slow down the post first crack roasting and achieve better, lighter, roasts.

I also found this cheap dual thermocouple thermometer. I haven't ordered it but it would be a way of getting two temp readings to guide roasting.

http://www.storei...802ii.html
happycat
I received a refund today so I've suspended this project. I'd like to express my appreciation to Jim for developing the TC4C technology and I'd like to offer my support and assistance for its future.
tamarian
I haven't used TC4/TC4C as I'm using a Fuji PXG PID. However, the part list is well documented on the project page on Google, and Arduino is well documented. It imagine TC4/TC4C can be built with some DIY soldering. Just a thought, and maybe experienced TC4C users can confirm is the part list is up to date.
Wa'il. 1 Kg PID'ed gas-fired fluid bed roaster, GS/3MPS, K10F
JackH
TC4 shield V4.0 eagle files are here:
http://code.googl...253Dclosed

That is the version board I am using. If I needed one, I would build on a Arduino shield proto board since the schematic is simple.

--Jack
Edited by JackH on 07/22/2013 6:47 PM
happycat
Thank you for posting this. Please keep us updated on progress.

I have done a PID kit and some DIY around the house and used to build PCs as a kid but I think I would need to see it done once to keep up with you guys.
bvwelch
The TC4C is a great board that combines the function of an Arduino, with the TC4 shield.

But you could make something similar with any of the Arduino or clones that accept the original shield footprint and pin-out. The Uno R3 works fine. Other ATMega328 boards should be OK too.

For projects in Eagle, there is no need for gerbers -- places like GoldPhoenix will accept Eagle board files directly. For example, the link above to the TC4 V4.0 files should work fine.

The original prototype used a JeeLabs 'analog plug' which has the 4-channel ADC chip pre-assembled And you will need another sensor to read the ambient temperature. But, doing a small run of the TC4 would be easier and maybe even cheaper.

If SMD soldering concerns you -- don't let it. I was concerned too, but these boards are easy -- check out the tutorials at Sparkfun. The main thing -- don't worry about solder bridges -- just wick them away, after you are done.
Edited by bvwelch on 07/22/2013 10:48 PM
bvwelch
good to hear that you are looking to get shields made -- just for comparison, I think about $100 USD gave about 25 boards, shipped, from GoldPhoenix. But that was a couple years ago I guess.

I seem to recall there is a manual and lots of details on the HT wiring but I don't have that roaster, so no first-hand info from me.
bvwelch
with regards to LCD and buttons -- Jim's LCD adapter is great, with the built-in buttons and all operating using I2C. But there are plenty of other solutions -- any Arduino project with LCD or buttons can be incorporated into coffee roasting apps. I like I2C, and in the prototype I used an I2C LCD controller from JeeLabs. But you can also do the usual nibble-mode LCD approach.
bvwelch
I was repeating what Jim had related to me. I think he was happy with them and the time was reasonable.
JackH
GreenPhil, Thanks for looking into this. This is a great board and I am glad it will continue. Hopefully Jim will resume when he can.

--Jack
bvwelch
Well said, Jack.

About the parts list -- I think you'll find a Digikey parts list on the V4 page -- see Jacks link above.

I do recommend the 'stackable' headers -- they may not be at Digikey - try Adafruit or Sparkfun. They have extra long pins.
smico
Phil,
I was beta tester for HTC. If you need anything to test, or check from long time user perspective, just let me know.
Phil, please charge fair price for the finished products. We want TC4 to be alive and kicking for a long time. I would argue that you should look at JimG's example and NOT make the same mistake.

I suggest that you keep kits priced lower for people that can not afford it. This is unspoken custom for open source projects.

I personally bought kit, and then bought assembled TC4 naively thinking that I was helping out the project.

Thank you again for the efforts.

Miroslav
Hottop B2 + HTC, Cremina 83, OE Pharos, Brewtus IIIR, Baratza Vario
smico
Philip,
Sorry, I didn't read part of your post carefully, but everything is clear now. This is a good plan.
Let me know if I can help in some way. I have HTC for Hottop B2, and two operational TC4s.
Regards,
Miroslav
Hottop B2 + HTC, Cremina 83, OE Pharos, Brewtus IIIR, Baratza Vario
brennn
Is the MOSFET used because happycat's fan is DC instead of a 120VAC fan?
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