Roaster capacity: Diedrich, Ambex, US Roasters, and Probat

coffeejoes

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I have a question concerning the useable capacity of the above commerical roasters. I currently use a Ambex YM-2 with a stated green charge weight of 5#. My experience with the Ym-2 is a maximum charge of 3.5# or a 70% factor of the stated capacity. I will be moving up to a larger roaster very soon and may be changing brand. I am interested in your experiences with the roasters mentioned in the above heading. I have talked to all the manufactures but I am interested in the real life experiences of commerical roasters. As an example, I have looked at the Diedrich IR-3 with a stated charge weight of 6.6#. Is this realistic? Or is the sales staff over selling this unit? Any help would be greatly appreciated.[/b]
 

scotthark

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How long does it take to do that 30 Lbs. batch?

Diedrich's IRs, ususally don't have enough power to do a full load in a good roast time. I might be wrong about the IR-12, just wondering.

Inregards to the Question of the post it depends on how much you want to spend and the quality of the coffee you want to produce. Also the size of the roaster you are looking for?

Best small size roaster I've used is a Renegade 5K.
 
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coffeejoes

coffeejoes

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Is your IR-12 pre-1999 or later? Diedrich sales dept. indicates that at 1999 they gave their drums more "headroom" so as to make the kilo size realistic.
 

ElPugDiablo

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coffeejoes said:
Is your IR-12 pre-1999 or later? Diedrich sales dept. indicates that at 1999 they gave their drums more "headroom" so as to make the kilo size realistic.
Did they say that? Cuz what they are saying is prior to 1999 they falsely represented their product. I think questions you need to ask any roaster maker are at full capacity, what kind of roasting time can you expect? I think Diedrich says 18 minutes, which to me is too long. How much flame and air flow you can control? If the only way to roast at capacity is to have it at full blast and with one profile then it is not going to do you any good.

My is a pre-1999 IR-12. But I have roasted on a 2004 IR-12 at a friend's place. Although I only have limited time on it, I still don't think full batch is realistic.
 

ElPugDiablo

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scotthark said:
How long does it take to do that 30 Lbs. batch?

Diedrich's IRs, ususally don't have enough power to do a full load in a good roast time. I might be wrong about the IR-12, just wondering.

Inregards to the Question of the post it depends on how much you want to spend and the quality of the coffee you want to produce. Also the size of the roaster you are looking for?

Best small size roaster I've used is a Renegade 5K.
I have never gone pass roasting more than 20 pounds in my IR-12. Diedrich talked about roasting time of 18 minutes - too long for me.

Have you have any experience with joper 5K? how does that compare to renegade 5K? the joper 15K and renegade 15K are on my radar screen if and when I out grow my ir-12.
 

topher

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why is it you can only do 3.5 lbs per batch? I used to have the same roaster and could do from 5 lbs down to 4 ounces. I now have a 2.5 10 adn 120 kilo Toper and a 60 kilo Ambex. And can do the maximum capacity in each.
 
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coffeejoes

coffeejoes

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ElPugDialbo
I have only seen pictures of the Joper and Renegade Roasters. They appear to be very well built machines.
Topher
When I roast over 3.5# say 4# my roasts are very uneven. It is like half the beans are tending toward a french roast while the other half will be a lighter roast. As soon as I drop to 3.5# all the roasts are even. I have assumed that at 4# ther is not enough room for bean expansion and then the mottled bean look is caused by poor mixing in the drum. I am assuming that a portion of the beans get trapped or are isolated close to the hotter parts of the drum. It is interesting to hear that you are able to roast 5.0# batches on the YM-2.
 

topher

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do you still have the roaster? Check to see if the roaster is level. Did you ever contact Terry or Paul about this?
 
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coffeejoes

coffeejoes

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I have checked the level of the roaster and I will recheck today. In fact, Paul advised me to check the level. I am using natural gas vs propane. Do you use propane on your YM-2?
 

topher

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I used propane...have you adjusted your gas pressure? I am now using natural gas for my 2.5 toper and have no problems. I would first check the roaster as to being level..then I would play with the gas pressure(there should be an adjustment lever near the rear of the roaster.) What are your roast times when the coffee is not coming out even. I had this problem and my times were way to fast...oh well hope I can help.
:wink:
 

scotthark

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The Renegade Roaster are very well built machines, with the best motors, electronics, and burners. You have complete control over any aspect of the roast, and do a full batch in any amount of time you want. They are well worth the money, as long as you're dedicated to making GREAT coffee. They are great people to work with. I can atest to this as I used to work for them building the machines and installing equipment. I understand that this perhaps sounds bias; however, I have used a good amount of other machines and I believe whole heartly that they are the best. When I open my coffee shop, I intend to purchase one. If you have questions, or comments please let me know.

I will say this, unless you've used a machine, or one by that manufacturer, don't speak poorly about that manufacturer. This goes for any manufacturer.

Here's to great coffee!
 

lizzy

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I too am interested in your statement that the YM2 can't handle 5#. I routinely roast 2K at a time. A chair, a book, sit with the roaster, I can finish up about 35# in about 2 hours. I enjoy it, love the excuse; "I'm roasting tonight, don't call me." I like a small roaster for my shop, I like having 5 lbs of this and 5 lbs of that. easier to have a nice variety of fresh coffee for a shop my size. Also, mistakes are less costly! Depending on the degree of roast, 5# takes 16-18 minutes.

I use propane, it has been converted. I did do a little adjusting of the flame in the (duh, can't think of the name of the thing-thermostat area) at first. I still need to get a service man to look at it, the pilot flame is too high and yellow.

I find that I have to clean the roaster and especially the exhaust fan A LOT. Before firing up the roaster, I use an assortment of stiff brushes in many sizes and shapes and a shop vac that I keep under the roaster so I have no excuses to turn it on without cleaning out the chaff from the last roasting session.

If I don't, it just builds up chaff cakes way too fast, and doesn't cool properly. perhaps that would also cause it to roast unevenly?
 
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coffeejoes

coffeejoes

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Topher
I rechecked the level both front to back and side to side. The front to back level was a bit out and same with the side to side level. Now the roaster is perfectly level. I checked the roasting times and this should be a good example:Drop temp. is 380, Bottom out temp is 150-155 in 60-70 seconds, 1st crack at 380 at 8:30 with a finish time of 12:40 at 435. Should I be increasing the time frame? I had a gas service man check my pressure prior to the gas valve, it reads 8 col inches and when the roaster is on 100% flame the gauge on the roaster reads almost 6 col inches.

Lizzy
It is good to hear that you are able to roast 5# on propane. I use NG and what I have learned is that NG means smaller loads. I use about the same procedures that you do in cleaning the roaster with one exception, I also use compressed air after I have vacumned out the entire roaster.

One thing I have noticed is when running 4# vs. 3.5# I have a lot more chaff in the beans. The 3.5# batch comes out much cleaner. I have noticed this both in the cooling bin and the final container. Does this sound right? I am starting to think that perhaps my exhaust is crippling the roaster. My exhaust setup is as follows: coming off the chaff collector I run 4" single wall at a 45 degree angle for 5' to an outside wall, the duct exits the wall in a 90 degree and enters a 6" duct which runs up the side of the building for 16'. The roaster exhaust is positive pressure-is it possible that the length of run is way to long or is it a problem dumping it into the 6" duct? The 6" duct has much more air to push up and out. Perhaps this is a problem. Any comments on this duct setup or please describe your setup.
 

lizzy

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I just have a very short length for the fan to push through. a 45 elbow then out the roof of my "roasting shed", about 8' total.
 
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