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  1. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    EDISON WA-Center of the Universe
    Posts
    487
    Dear Maxtor,

    No sweat, and maybe I got a bit defensive too. No bad feelings and more respect. For sure youre in a much better light, and you know what? some times the best relationships are started via conflic

    CIAO
    If your java tastes bitter: ASK QUESTIONS.
    Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

  2. #22
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    North Georgia, USA
    Posts
    176
    Sorry to jump into this late. I have the Sonofresco - a.k.a. Monster - roaster AND the Ambex YM-2. Here are my observations...

    1) The Monster is great for push a button and walk away. But, it is prone to issues. I had a controller board failure and had to replace that very expensive part. I broke the glass roasting chamber and had to replace it - also very expensive. With the new controller, I'm having trouble with beans burning. I talked to Monster but they seem to think it is a user error. I'm not sure what to do...I'm ready to send it back and let them check it.

    2) The Ambex YM-2 is in the general price range, +/- a couple grand. It is a traditional drum roaster and can give you up to 5 lbs per batch, whereas the Moster can do only 1lb at a time.

    3) My customers claim they taste a difference in the flavor of the coffee - for the better. Could it be because I've switched from the air roaster to a drum? I've heard coffee critics say that fluid-bed roasted coffee (air roaster) lacks depth in flavor. Okay...I admit I can tell the difference, too, but I haven't done a blind study to back up that opinion.

    4) The Monster requires less attention - as I said, push a button and let it go. The closest thing I've had to a roaster fire was because the roasting chamber wasn't properly seated and forced the airflow to be out of alignment. The beans burned, but there was no actual flame, so I just shut down and yanked the roasting chamber, doused the beans and went on with life.

    5) The Ambex YM-2 roaster is an identical scale model of the huge industrial stength roaster - when your business grows (and I hope for you it does) you'll be able to upgrade to a bigger roaster using the skills and knowlege you gain from working with the small guy.

    I'm not bashing the Monster...it has served me well, but I quickly outgrew it. Knowing now what I didn't know then, I would have spent a little extra and bought the Ambex. That's my opinion.

    If you still want the Monster, I'll sell you mine at a very reasonable price!

    -Steve

  3. #23
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Boca Raton
    Posts
    3,387
    I thought it was your son that had a mishap with your monster :P
    "Wine is for aging, not coffee."
    Ken Hutchinson, Starsky and Hutch

  4. #24
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Omaha
    Posts
    2

    Re: Monster Coffee Roaster

    Hello everyone.

    Just a quick note regarding in shop roasting. We've been doing it for nearly 5 years now. If you've got a micro roaster from monstercoffee, here's some advice/tips:

    Throw out your $150 glass roasting chambers and replace them with a #10 can. It works really well and will obviously save you a small fortune in replacing the ridiculously fragile glass ones.

    Keep the thermocoupler and chaffe screens extremely clean!

    If it's a propane model, switch the tanks when they're about half empty to avoid irregular roasts.

    Use a vaccum to suck up chafe. I actually installed a small shop vac under the counter with a switch up top for convenience.

    Make sure your venting is double wall stainless and keep it clean!

    As to in shop roasting in general, roasting your own coffee is a no brainer. Our roasters have made us so much money it's hard to believe every coffee shop isn't roasting. If you have a coffee shop, just buy a roaster and get started. 90% of the battle is taking action on something that can help you succeed. If you want to tweek with various roasting styles and don't want to spend a ton of time roasting get a larger more complicated unit. Just remember, there's far more important things for owners to be doing than cooking coffee. (It's not that romantic nor does it need to be complicated)

    Don't be fooled by tricks and deciept by others herein who are obviously either wholesale roasters or drum roaster sales people.

    Roasting yourself really is a good idea. SPEAK DIRECTLY to anyone who actually does it in their shop but don't rely on these ridiculous posts by supposed owners. But heck, don't listen to me, do your own investigations and you'll come to the same conclusions.

  5. #25
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    North Georgia, USA
    Posts
    176
    Nashroasting....your comments are welcomed, but you are way off base. If you read the comments we've posted, you'd realize that a lot of time and thought went into these suggestions. I am not a wholesale roaster, nor am I a drum roaster salesperson. Speak directly to anyone who actually has one? The serial number on my roaster is CK-3450. Call Peggy and have her confirm that I purchased it last year. In fact, I talked to her today about my bean burning problems. I tried to e-mail David Allender, but the granfields.com address I had for him bounced back. I am amazed that you would dare question the integrity of roasting professionals that come here to share ideas and learn from each other.

    So don't come to this forum with accusations like that. I don't believe anyone here is attempting "tricks and deceit" (you spelled it wrong, by the way). I personally resent such a suggestion. You say there are far more important things for owners to be doing than "cooking" coffee - I say the coffee is the lifeblood of the business so why are you in the business to begin with? Obviously it isn't diplomacy. If you are trying to put forth a positive image of the Monster/Sonofresco roaster, you aren't helping them out!

    I would offer anyone the chance to come here and spend time with both roasters and see the differences firsthand. If all you want is to sell paper cups of swill, then take the easy path, buy the simple machine, and "cook coffee". I wish you the best of luck.

    On the other hand, I applaud anyone who is willing to put some research into their business decisions and consider the quality of their product and the satisfaction of their customers over the ease of use and dollars they are making in a business that lacks the finesse and "romance" of centuries of tradition. Perhaps the Monster roaster is just what you need...that is a decision you have to make. Or let Nashroasting make for you. But as with any piece of equipment there are pros and cons to consider. So if 90% of the battle is taking action on something that can help you succeed, I think starting here and gaining insights from the experiences of others can help save you thousands of dollars, and that's a good action to take first. Which roaster to buy? You be the judge based on what you think will work best for you. Regardless of what equipment you end up with, some of us here are willing to offer ongoing guidance and support.

 

 
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