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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Amateur roasters looking for guidance

    Hi. We're a husband and wife and we've been home roasting for about four years. Our latest roaster is the Behlmor and we're looking to upgrade to a semi-professional roaster.
    The thing we're seeing is that roasters go from home roasting at less than $1000 to commercial at over $10,000. We're looking for something in between: home roasting with 50 - 60 pounds a week being sold. Anything like that?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Milwaukee, WI
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    Depending on your timetable you might consider hunting down a used 2K or 3K in good condition. I bought a 4 year old Ambex YM-2K for $5K, and it's a joy to use and has lots of life left in it. Running the batches I typically do, you could manage your weekly volume in about 5 hours, and produce some great coffee.

    Before that, for many years I used two SC/TO's, and could produce 4# per hour. But you'd get tired of that pretty fast.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterjschmidt View Post
    Depending on your timetable you might consider hunting down a used 2K or 3K in good condition. I bought a 4 year old Ambex YM-2K for $5K, and it's a joy to use and has lots of life left in it. Running the batches I typically do, you could manage your weekly volume in about 5 hours, and produce some great coffee.

    Before that, for many years I used two SC/TO's, and could produce 4# per hour. But you'd get tired of that pretty fast.
    Thanks for the response. I'll look into that.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    I do 20-30 lbs a week on a 6 lb roaster. Its a side thing for me, so the 4-5 hours weekly or so I give it are enough...thinking about doing 60 lbs would be pushing it if it was done alongside my full time job. (whatever your notion is of how long it takes to roast, my experience in consistently being over-optimistic about gauging how long something takes is teaching me to at least double that time figure I come up with. so even though technically I can roast 20 lbs an hour or so, the 3 lbs I roasted tonight somehow took me about an hour start to finish)

    I suggest you do the math on your profit from 50 lbs a week and see how fast you can return your investment on something in the ballpark of 15k. I'm guessing that sounds crazy from your perspective, as it did for me before I did it. But figuring profits of around $6 a bag(like I have), it would only take about a year. Cut your profits in half and you still pay the machine off in 2 years. All while getting to play with a sweet roaster. I still can't believe I have such a nice roaster in my garage that we get to use to make our daily cup o joe.

  5. #5
    Administrator
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    Sep 2012
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    Kansas
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    Welcome aboard and good luck on your roaster search...

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Reading Redswing's post reminds me to say that you need to not get shortsighted regarding profits being made only during roasting. His example of $6/lb. profit and 20lb./hour capacity doesn't mean you can make $120/hour profit. I've never crunched the numbers, but generally assume the other end of the business - either getting the beans to market/stocking bins, or being available for customers, or cupping samples, or bookkeeping - will at least equal the amount of time spent roasting. So your profit will be halved or cut in thirds by all the back-end activities.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    right you are, Peter. I consider my profit because I basically have 0 expenses, since I roast out of my garage primarily for friends and family. If I were to rent a commercial space in order to get wholesale accounts, which is what it would take for me here in CA, I figure I would need to roast 60 lbs a week JUST to pay my rent.

    SteveandConnie...have you looked into the sonofresco?1 kilo/2 lb: Sonofresco ADR Profile Roaster

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    Michigan, US
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    I don't really consider Sonofresco as commercial grade. I do think they can handle constant roasting but I would prefer more traditional roaster if you are planning on roasting more in the future.

  9. #9
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    but it fits in that window between $1k and $10k, and roasts 2 lbs at a time...

  10. #10
    Junior Member
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    Mar 2014
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    Again, thanks for all the responses. Those Ambex look like great roasters.

 

 
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