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super slow Gene :( 12 minutes!
beanut
I was SOO excited to get my new GC. I mean i literally read every post to this GC roaster forum since post number 1, yes it took many days and much coffee.

Well it finally got here and of course the first thing i did was do a cool start, no beans ramp up to 482, hoping and praying for a fast machine. Could i get a 5 minute machine? no, a 6 min?, no. 7? Nope. 12 minutes!!!!

12 minutes!!!!

I just opened the box, put it on my stove, ran a tube from the exhaust to my fan and turned it on to 482 and pressed start NO BEANS. Thats what we are supposed to do right? Did i miss something? Is this machine broken? It did give off new machine smell. blech.

Should i just send her back to SM? Should i just go for the HT instead?

ugh. And i timed my coffee supplies just right, now i need to go roast in my toastmaster again. Not that theres anything wrong with that.

Beanut

roar
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

... the first thing i did was do a cool start... ramp up to 482, hoping and praying for a fast machine... Nope. 12 minutes!!!!



Beanut, do you have a voltmeter that would allow you to check VAC? Given the extreme weather conditions in some parts of the country, there is a possibility that you ran your GC during an important power fluctuation. You might consider repeating the test while measuring the voltage of the outlet that you are using to power the CG. Should the voltage be much below 120VAC, that might explain the GC's slow temperature rise.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
beanut
Thanks for your reply Ceil,

I did check the outlet with a mulit-meter. the outlet said 119 Volts.

I'm roasting inside, temp in house is 71*F.

BeanutShock
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
beanut
I did the cold start again, to see if it had magically fixed itself and am quantifying min by min temps and posting them here. It did get better by one minute!tiki

2 min=316
3 min=361
4 min=390
5 =413
6=428
7=445
8=456
9=465
10=474
11=480
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ginny
Hi:

have you gone through the Gene Cafe Forums to see others time/issues an fixe?

it may be wise to do that plus just run it with different amounts of beans to see what is going on.

where did you get the Gene Cafe?


ginny

rockon
 
ciel-007
Some HRO members who use electric roasters have opted to purchase two important accessories. Namely a "Kill-A-Watt", and a "Powerstat".

The Kill-A-Watt allows them to measure how much wattage the roaster is drawing from the power outlet. They can then compare the wattage reading from the "Kill-A-Watt" with the roasting power (wattage) advertised by the manufacturer.

A Powerstat is helpful in the event that the wattage that the roaster is drawing from the outlet is significantly lower than the manufacturer's claims. A Powestat may then be used to boost voltage (i.e. wattage) entering the roaster in order to speed up the roasting process.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
beanut
Hi Ginny,

I have been thru the whole GC roaster forum. There are fixes, but to figure out exactly whats wrong with this machine could take a while. AND its new from Sweet Maria's so i really don't want to go through all that trouble with a new machine.

I could try some beans in it, but if the machine is just defective, I'd rather not have to go through the cleaning needed after a few roasts.

Beanut
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
beanut
Hi Ceil,

Now you've got me worried that its not the GC, its my house. That would be very sad, it is an 100 year old house, but the wiring to the kitchen is new.

I really don't want to have to buy a Kill-o-watt and a Powerstat unless i have to for any machine to work in my house. Do you know how much they run $$$?

Why aren't there machines on the market that are over powered but still give a great deal of user control? It seems like the HT, the Behmor and the GC are all running at their max output, or close to it, to give a good 11-14 min roast.

Beanut
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ginny
I am still not clear on why you think it is not working correctly;

if it is new it will take some break in time.

I do not think you need to buy extra stuff if you know you have 119 coming out of the outlet...

12 minutes seems ok to me for roasting coffee; perhaps you read too much.

go through your directions that came with your new Gene Cafe and see what happens.

if it does not roast then yeah you got a problem.


ginny
 
ginny
A wise man said:


Quote

jedovaty wrote:


It's unlikely I'm the first guy to think of it this way - there's gotta be a reason why something like the above hasn't been adopted. Perhaps the "zen" aspect is too strong? Or there are too many other factors making it not as easy as it appears to me?

- everything starts with technique, and ultimately transcends to the senses of the artist.


and another said:


Quote

My observation at HRO is that the drive toward the techinical is actually larger than the drive toward the zen.

I believe the problem is the 'other factors'.
A truly accurate bean temp is elusive.
Enviromental readings are variable as well. etc...etc ...etc

I think all these variables are misleading. Machines rely on hard imformation. I think we are the only machine (so far) that can correlate all the signals and variables, and then produce the moment of alchemy....
...a decision.

It's unlikely that any automated system will teach you to roast. It's more likely that you would teach your machine what to do.

Every discipline starts with technique....but we evaluate that technique with our senses.

Set some beans on fire...make some mistakes. It's a beautiful thing!

Have some fun and tell us about it! Happy roasting!! -Scott<<<



the comments above were taken from a different thread where first crack and second crack were being discussed, but they apply to almost anything to do with roasting.

the bottom line is numbers cannot roast your beans, you do hence before you decide you have a bad machine you need to roast some, lots actually because you are learning to roast.the beans decide how long they need to roast really and you are just the new guide here.

all beans are not created equal, all roast conditions are not created equal so forget all the numbers for now and roast some beans. you will learn how you like your beans later but start by sight and smell...

forget time and numbers look, see and smell to decide right now.


ginny
 
ginny
another note, you do not need to buy a lot of extra stuff to help you roast. you do not need to modify your new Gene Cafe to get a perfect roast.

you need your roaster, some beans and your senses...


ginny


rockon
 
beanut
Thank Ginny,

I agree that roasting is still an art. Being an artist, thats one of the reasons i'm so drawn to this process.

My concern is that there has been a consensus decision here on this GC forum that the GC should be able to reach 482 (with no beans in it) by 7 minutes or it is not working properly.

Mine machine went from 0 to 482 in 12 minutes with NO beans. Certainly i'd be thrilled if i did a 12 minute roast WITH beans.

Perhaps I will go try a roast with beans and just see what happens, then clean it well if i need to return it. Just wanted the opinion of people who have used this machine for years to see if I was right...that it shouldn't behave like this, and that it should be returned if its broken to start.

Beanut
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

I did the cold start again, to see...

2 min=316
3 min=361
4 min=390
5 =413
6=428
7=445
8=456
9=465
10=474
11=480



Beamut, the time/temperature measurements that you posted for your new GC are encouraging. Why not consider following Ginny's advice, and try roasting a few batches of greens?

The sweetest pulls from my Brewtus have come from roasts where a BMT of 330F was not reached before 6.5 minutes had elapsed. Further, the best pulls from my Brewtus have come from beans where the BMT of a roast (lasting 13 minutes) did not exceeded 428F.

A quick look at your time/temperature measurements suggest that you might well be able to achieve a similar profile with your GC.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
ginny
call or email Thom and ask him about it since it is new. though out the door, new machine, never used anything needs to be broken in...

-g
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

... there has been a consensus decision here on this GC forum that the GC should be able to reach 482 (with no beans in it) by 7 minutes or it is not working properly...



Being able to reach high temperatures quickly may not be the single most important design feature of a roaster - there are other important design considerations leading to a fine roast.

Given that there have been some reliability concerns with earlier versions of the GC, it is possible that the manufacturer may have modified the heater specifications of its newer roasters in order to improve the CG's long term reliability.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
coffeeroastersclub
Beanut, 12 minutes is fine. Actually your toastmaster was way too fast.

Len
"If this is coffee, please bring me some tea but if this is tea, please bring me some coffee." ~Abraham Lincoln
 
beanut
Hello All,

So, theres good news and bad news...

I just brought the GC to a friends house, Ceil had me thinking maybe it was my electrical instead of the Gene Cafe. He was right.

Got to 428 (again NO BEANS) in under 6 minutes. So thats the good news. The bad news....that means i need to see whats up with the electric in my house.

I'm going to try a roast today, down in the basement closest to the box.

My concern, of course, is that with beans in the roaster, it will take much much longer to get up to even 450* (ET not BMT) and be able to finish a roast in under 16-17 minutes.

I was doing 12 minute roasts in my toastmaster and they were pretty darn good.

Beanut
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

... Ciel had me thinking maybe it was my electrical instead of the Gene Cafe. He was right...


Beanut, I suggest that you test the GC on several outlets in your house. You should measure VAC twice for each outlet. Namely:
1) measure outlet VAC before turning GC ON
2) measure VAC about 1 minute after GC has been turned ON at full power.
The outlet with the highest VAC (measured in step 2) would likely be your best bet for roasting.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
beanut
Hi All,

Well took your advice and just went for it. Did a sacrificial batch of Ethiopian beans that i got at the local market (yep seattle has green coffee beans at the co-op market, wow) Didn't want to waste my good sweet marias beans on a "who knows what will happen" roast.

Seems to have gone well. Preheated the caraf to 400* then:

3 min bean drying at 300*.
464 till 1C (12:10 min) + 30 sec
450 for 3.5 min
465* wanted to get to 2C because i wanted to know what it sounded like in this machine.
2C at 17:00
manually pulled caraf dumped beans in cooler
put caraf back and cooled machine.

Will report back on cup taste in two-three days.

Ceil. VAC went down to 113 in outlet while machine was in use.

Ginny. excited about machine again now that i am roasting in it and not complaining about it.

Beanut
beanut attached the following image:
1stbatchingenesmall.jpg

GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

... 1C (12:10 min) ... wanted to get to 2C because i wanted to know what it sounded like in this machine... 2C at 17:00...


Most CG owners, including myself, have difficulty hearing 1C and 2C in the GC. How did you manage it?

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

Will report back on cup taste in two-three days.



The beans in your photo seem pretty good. Looking forward to hear how you feel about the results of your first roast. Unlike you, I did not have the patience to wait days before tasting my very first roast. So, I prepared that first pull as soon as the beans had cooled. Boy was I disappointed! There was absolutely no way that my first browns were going to improve if I waited a few of days! Into the trash can they flew, and onto my next roast I went. Of Course, the results of my first roast did not look as pretty as your beans do.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
beanut
Hey Ceil,

Hearing the Cracks was definitely not as easy as it was on my popper, thats for sure, but i could hear enough to determine the start of 1C and 2C, the end of 1C was a bit trickier.

As for waiting to brew, pure self interest. I want them to taste good so bad that if i try them after 1 day and they are too acidic I'll be disappointed. I know they'll taste better on day two. So i'm waiting till then, the better to pat myself on the back you see.smoking

beanut
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
ginny
I taste every roast right of the bat so I know...



-g


do not be afraid to try it right away.
 
ciel-007

Quote

beanut wrote:

Ciel, VAC went down to 113 in outlet while machine was in use...



Beanut, here's a situation where you might wish to consider the potential advantages of roasting with a Powerstat at some point in the future. The Powestat would allow you to boost VAC from 113VAC to 120VAV; that would provide the CG with more reserve power for those special moments when you might need/want faster heat rise in the roasting bean mass.

Ciel
Ciel... seeking Heaven in my cup with ................................................................................................................. EXPOBAR Brewtus II - MAZZER Mini E - MAHLK?NIG Vario - GeneCafe - RAF-1 Extreme (Modified B-2 HOTTOP) - BellaTaiwan XJ-101
 
beanut
Ceil: Will definitely look into Powerstat! I prefer having the power and not needing it to the other way around.

Ginny: As for brewing right away. I'll hold off...but bean munching... now that i can do.

So far, of the 4 roasts i've done (cause its a new toy and i keep having new ideas), bean munching has told me i prefer slower lower heat roasts with some drying time.

I smell during development time after 1C until beans smell sweet, not astringent (GC at about 442*), then Stop before 2C. At least thats the plan. Still getting comfortable with GC.

Hard to tell when its not developed enough after 1C and when i've gone past peak taste into roasty flavor.

This is too fun. I can't wait till I'm good enough to give this stuff away (and turn people on not off) so I can Roast MORE!

BBQ grill

beanut
GrinExpobar brewtus IV, MK K30 vario, Gene Cafe
 
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