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02/06/2023 10:36 AM
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Roast Case
After a couple of months of roasting ultra-small batches in a popcorn popper, i figured it was time to move on to a proper setup.

My wife had laid a well-defined wishlist (actually a had-to-happen list ?):
  1. The thing must be tidy, compact and concealable
  2. Must not make a mess
  3. Can't cost a fortune

I had a wishlist too:
  1. Should be based on a fluidbed
  2. Should properly roast up to 500 g/1 lb of green coffee
  3. Should be controllable by Artisan
  4. Electric heating
  5. Should be (trans)portable

I spent some time sourcing for such a thing, but found no perfect match:
  1. Sonofresco profile roaster 1 lb - $3k+ seemed too expensive, plus the gas thing makes me nervous
  2. Artisan 3e - Too bulky, too expensive at $4k
  3. CBR-101A - Right price, too small batch size at 250 g / 8 oz

I know this may sound familiar, but I did go through this and other forums and found nothing that ticked all the boxes, either comercial or DIY.

I must confess I was slightly biased towards a DIY project; as an engineer I always lean into building stuff myself, even if it ends up consuming massive amounts of my time and costing more than just buying the god damn thing the first place ?
And so it did!

It's been over a year now, but after several tuning iterations the project is mostly finished. So I thought I would share it with you guys, in case anyone is crazy enough to try and build it ?. After all, most ideas came from your contributions in this forum.

I've been roastings tens of batches on it, and only a couple of them ended up bad. Never went back to the popcorn popper, never went back to roasted beans!

Here's the thing:

It's based on music gear flight cases (45 x 21 x 43 cm):

It's guts:

The Arduino, TC4 and ZCD surrounded by aluminum shielding:

The beans dropping mechanism:

The cyclone chaff collector:

The anti-clog chaff rotating filter:

Actually roasting:

I'll be posting the BOM and all building details in this thread, stay tuned!
And feel free to comment and discuss improvement ideas should you find this interesting.

Disclaimer: This is just a hobby for me, I will not be selling or by any means making money out of this.
Welcome and ... wow !
This treasure chest design is sooo ... "Fifteen Men ... and a Bottle of Rum" Grin

Seems CK has competition... finally Shock Tough competition...
Hey PJ. I'll say you have definitely evolved! Amazing roaster!

Thanks for posting. Keep us up to date on how your roasts cup as you go through more greens.
1/2 lb and 1 lb drum, Siemens Sirocco fluidbed, presspot, chemex, cajun biggin brewer from the backwoods of Louisiana
Thanks guys.
I'm attaching the BOM. It's under $500 in parts (but probably over $5000 in labor Shock).
poejokiller attached the following file: [10.86kB / 172 Downloads]
That's pretty damn sick. I mean, slick. Grin Great work!

I like the bean drop sliding door! And the rest of the roaster!
Very nice design. Well done! I can relate to the "over $5000 in labour"... The commercial-grade box construction is great too.
Have fun roasting!
Technivorm Moccamaster, French Press, Aeropress GO, Ibrik, Moka pot, Breville Barista Express, Urbanic070s/static-free with zero retention mods, Breville SGP, Roaster908
I love it. I'd like one too please. That also makes an excellent sample roaster!!
Clever Coffee Dripper
Grinder: Macap M4
Roaster: Completed drum roaster project photos shown here:
Videos https://www.youtu...Bd1NrdpSUH
Wow that is impressive! I built a similar type of fluid bed roaster but haven't had the guts to post about it yet. After seeing your work, there's a lot to improve on mine!

Could you show more of the top of the chamber? Did you build some kind of deflector to avoid blowing the beans to your chaff collector?

Edit: Wait, that's probably the chaff filter you showed.
Edited by JFA on 04/13/2022 5:45 AM
Thanks guys!

@JFA believe it or not, the filter was by far the most challanging part of the project. I tried multiple configurations for the filter, but either chaff would accumulate there and clog or beans would go through. It was only when I came up with the design that makes the filter rotate with the air flow that I was able to successfully and consistently roast 500g of green coffee in such a short chamber.

I was thinking the chaff collector would give me the most trouble, so I was very surprised how effectively it worked right from the first attempt. The container itself is very small, but there must be such high air pressure inside that every single bit of chaff is compacted, and literally zero dust comes out. My wife is happy!
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