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NewBean
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Just waiting on my TC4 shipment then it's roasting time

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Behmor 1600+ researching move to K+
clumsyfingers
Greets, I've been pulling shots, caps, and Americanos at home for about 30 years. Worked my way from a stream toy to single boilers, heat exchangers, to finally a full PID doubler boiler. Thru the years tried many specialty pro blends. I like what I like, not a favorite of blends with acidity, fruit and floral notes. Like the chocolate, nut and caramel comfort. Probably because being a diabetic I can't eat a Snickers bar! Caffee Lusso's Gran Miscela Carmo has been my favorite for years.

When life wasn't too crazy I'd roast on my 1600 which I recently upgraded the panel to a Plus. Still, I can't say I'm satisfied with the depth of flavor I get in espresso. I'd generally do 228 gram loads. Pour over and press tasted good as brewing methods. I'm also tired of the preheat dance and then inserting the drum and then removing it for faster cooling at the end or opening the door and fanning down the insides and then cleaning up the chaff. I do roast outside but still have a cleanup. I used Roasterthing software (no probes) for logging mostly but as a Mac user tired of running a Windows emulator. Not having a Bean Temp probe has become a frustration. Recently I bought from Bodhi Leaf some Guatemala Asodiett because I could get it as green and roasted. My roast came close, not as citrus prominent as theirs. Personally, I don't care for the taste of either! I've rejected the idea of drilling a hole in the Behmor's side to place a probe in the drum, I want to simplify. Also tired of getting stabbed and cut up when I clean the wire drum!

Hopefully that's enough back story, and thank you if you've read this far! On to my questions.

I'm unclear on the K+ BT probe. A photo I saw somewhere of an empty chamber showed it as a small protrusion that didn't seem like it would touch any beans. Is it accurate?

I've watched YouTube clips and seen Artisan screen grabs of controlling the fan and heat and that looks appealing. Does it work as well as it looks?

Is there as great a lag in the heat changes as the IR heat of the Behmor?

My Kill-a-watt says my power during roast can vary from 116.x to 118.x and rarely 120 before pre-roast. Is the HT as sensitive? Will I need a Variac?

I realize I'm finicky about the taste and haven't found Sweet Marias Monkey Blend & New Classic Espresso or Roastmasters Milano blend to my liking. I'll probably have to start blending my own Single Origins. I've read the HT can do back to back roasts is there much cleanup before starting the second roast and can you do it without burning fingers?

Thanks in advance for any input.
Edited by clumsyfingers on 03/22/2019 1:27 PM
 
clumsyfingers
...Inhale.....Exhale.... "Not as dead as these cigarettes". Hudson & Landry
 
rgrosz78
clumsyfingers wrote:
(1) I'm unclear on the K+ BT probe. A photo I saw somewhere of an empty chamber showed it as a small protrusion that didn't seem like it would touch any beans. Is it accurate?

(2) I've watched YouTube clips and seen Artisan screen grabs of controlling the fan and heat and that looks appealing. Does it work as well as it looks?

(3) Is there as great a lag in the heat changes as the IR heat of the Behmor?

(4) My Kill-a-watt says my power during roast can vary from 116.x to 118.x and rarely 120 before pre-roast. Is the HT as sensitive? Will I need a Variac?

(5) I realize I'm finicky about the taste and haven't found Sweet Marias Monkey Blend & New Classic Espresso or Roastmasters Milano blend to my liking. I'll probably have to start blending my own Single Origins. I've read the HT can do back to back roasts is there much cleanup before starting the second roast and can you do it without burning fingers?

Thanks in advance for any input.

I have used both a Behmor and the Hottop B-2K+, so I will take a stab at your questions:

(1) The Hottop BT probe works fine. I have roasted as little as 160 grams, with no problem.

(2) Yes, artisan works very nicely to control the Hottop B-2K+. I have made a few Youtube videos of my Hottop roasts.

(3) The lag is not noticeable if you roast 225 grams or less. I have rarely roasted more than 250 grams.

(4) I live in Atlanta, GA and there is a noticeable power drop-off when everyone is running air conditioners in the summer. I have used a variac for many years, and I try to keep the voltage at 119 during the roasts. Without the variac, the roasts are 1-2 minutes slower, and I can taste the difference in the roasts.

(5) I blow out the chaff before I get started roasting. No need to do that for each roast, but you do have to empty the chaff tray. It takes about 15 minutes to cool down before it is ready for the next roast.
Life is too short to drink bad wine ... or bad coffee!
 
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fatboytx
(1) I think the display temp on mine is like 30F low. However, its predictably 30F low but is very precisely 30F low. So, its not a problem for me as I usually do manual roasts on my B2k with smell, listen, look, time, etc. I just think in lower display temps. For example, I mark EOD in my log at 270F display temp.

(3) I do manual roasts and have gotten use to how the fan and heat changes effect my drying, dev times. There is a lag but I would say that you just get use to it. Can't compare to your Behmor. I used a popcorn popper before my HT. The lag is very steady, not abrupt or something. Like steering a car: you look down the road and start turns a bit early.

(4) Nice. Never thought about a Variac. But I am doing manual adjustments the entire time. I think it would make it easier but its not necessary for me. I can usually tell during drying time how things are moving , e.g. how it bounces off turning pt. Anyway, maybe if I were a better roaster I'd see more of a difference.

(5) I typically do 3-4 roasts every time I get the roaster out. In between roasts I: remove the chaff tray, remove the front cover, blow it all out and look for stuck beans in the drum. I do all this after the bean cooling finishes and then wait prob 15-20 minutes before reassembling and starting next roast. The cooler the ambient temp the sooner the roaster cools down. Between roasts I log the roast in a spreadsheet (yeah no auto nothing ) print out a blank log ( yeah I have to write down stuff during the roast ) measure out the next load of beans, etc. ... so it feels like I am just moving from one roast to the next as I am busy the entire time.
 
clumsyfingers
Thank you, Rick and fatboytx. Rick has been extremely helpful over at another website. For anyone following this thread for their own questions, I’ll add this. Since my first post I sold the Behmor in 1 day on Craigslist, and bought a Hottop K+. I wanted to be able to control it with Artisan and have that data logging. I wish it had inventory control and label making but that’s just being picky. At the moment I still run Roastmaster App on my iPad for the inventory and labels.The Artisan software is great and I love being able to program the Alarms so I can pre-plan a roast and then tweak on the fly for any adjustments where I was wrong and learn from that. Charge and Drop functions are heavenly, no more hot potato heat resistant glove dance. I’ve been using my little desk fan to blow on the beans and aid the HT’s bottom cooling fan. Nice not to lug out to the patio a colander, cooling box and vacuum for external Behmor cooling. Surprised immediately by how even the roasts “look” and taste. Sweet M’s New Classic espresso is an example, with the B and my skills it was either too bright or flat for my tastes. Trying to follow Rick’s roast of the bean blend on YouTube, I came out with a taste that had more depth and character and I will now roast more often. I still have a lot to learn with the Hottop but have to say that my experience with the B has made the learning curve easier. Like the B the HT is easy to carry out to the patio and back indoors again after use. Chaff cleanup is minimal without opening a door to pull a drum. Hope this helps anyone else coming along this path. I can’t say that I wish I’d done this years ago because the K+ model wasn’t out then and having those thermocouples and Artisan were what I was yearning for.
 
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