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· 02/11/2020 1:10 PM
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· 02/11/2020 9:35 AM
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· 02/10/2020 10:25 AM
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· 02/06/2020 7:24 AM
Searched but no can find, but does anyone on here use the roasters made by CRC (Coffee Roasters Club) in Connecticut?

· 02/05/2020 2:50 PM
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Tri-Clamp Roaster
So I got sick of the 100g capacity of my gutted popcorn maker and wanted something a bit more powerful. Plus I needed a project.

I didn't know what to do for the roasting chamber as I recently moved to Germany (from Colorado) and gave my bake a around I was holding onto to a friend.

Then I found this distillation column on Aliexpress for only 36 euros:

It's kind of huge, but it seemed close enough. I'm also a little worried about the silicone seals, but I can always take them out if they start to burn up into the coffee beans and replace them with something better.

The heater is from a 1900w heating element from an Amazon heat gun stuck inside of the 1.5" tri-clamp tube with a wrap of mica to hopefully not electrocute anyone.

The fan is a "Fern" 400w (240v) air blower from Amazon. It's all wired together with a TC4 from Greencardigan, a ZCD, and a Crydom random fire SSR.

I accidentially destroyed my heater SSR, so the best I've done so far is a loft test without the heater on. Did about 25og of beans without much of an issue.

Like my construction method? Several things went wrong at this point. First, the poor little cyclone separator I got worked well at separating the chaff and random dirt from the beans, but there's a lot of back pressure from the little guy that's making it tough to loft the beans. In fact, when I took it out, I blasted a bunch of beans out the top when the pressure decreased. oops.

Second, its my plan to blast the beans into the chaff collection to remove them might not work, but I haven't gotten full power from the fan yet. Which brings my to the final problem. The ZCD/TC4 combo is working well above 25%, but I'm getting weird skipping when I'm lower. Anything I can do there? There was a resistor capacitor combo in between the live and neutral that made it work slightly better, but not a lot. It seems to work well at higher speeds.

It doesn't sound super happy, and I think I'll likely be roasting at pretty low power.

Link to distillation column please, search don't return anything useful.

Regarding weird skipping, is this related to fan or heater?
Recently posted here some notes from my experience, could be a similar issue.

If issue is for heater, I would try CONFIG_PWM mode instead ZCD/ICC and see what happens.
Sure thing:

It took a while to get here in DE, but it was remarkably well packed and seems like pretty nice quality.

It's the fan control, and I found a few things to try in there. Thanks for the link.


Mains is correct (60Hz, I'm in the USA). I think I figured it out - I had 5 volts going to my ZCD from the TC4, per But your (still excellent), quick start guide PDF only showed ground and signal going to your ZCD. I disconnected my 5V wire, and now it is much much smoother. I get one blip very occasionally, but its much much smoother and feels more like "full fan speed" at 100% as well.


Also try connecting the TC4 ground to mains ground. I've had motor pulsing issues in two controllers that were solved by grounding the TC4.

Edited by JackH on 01/26/2020 2:42 PM
Well I prepared a big post about my first attempt using the roaster after a number of setbacks (lets call them opportunities to improvise).

Then my crappy German Internet screwed up and I lost the whole thing before I could post it. So I gave up, writing is hard. Short story is, I was struggling with the ZCD/TC4 method of fan control and then also the Tindie PWM/ ZCD/Triac module which I think is just DOA. So I hooked the blower up to it's old handle/speed controller that I was holding onto "just in case". I was running out of coffee, and it's Sunday in Germany so of course nothing is open to buy coffee from for such an emergency.

Things I learned:
1. I needed the back pressure from cyclone separator to get enough temperature out of the element for 200G. Could likely do a fair amount more than 200g with the back pressure.

2. The PLA adapter for the separator lasted even less time than I thought it would, and I ended up holding the whole mess together with oven mitts for the roast.

3. You can just sandwich a thermocuple in the silicon tri-clamp gasket for BT, and it works pretty well.

4. FC is much harder to hear with this setup, but when I'm less panicked and not holding it all together with oven mitts it'll be fine.

5. I can blast 200G out of the top at full power, into a jar. Exactly what I was hoping I could do. Need to take the separator off for that though.

[email protected]:

The profile. You can see at the end where I installed the separator and the temp started to shoot up almost too fast to control.

Link to a photo Album:
Finished up another roast, things worked out a bit better with some more preparation. Still hard to hear 1st crack, but I did. I'm going to move the temp probes a bit. I'm going to add an inlet temp probe, and then have all three just for fun. Perhaps I can measure temperature difference for fun.

I tried to eject the beans at full power, but the giant sight glass I have is too big. I'm thinking I might go shorter, perhaps 3" by 140cm or so. We'll see, I can eject the beans if I remove the cyclone separator and open up the flow a bit though.


I still had issues with my TC4, I'm thinking I might try a new arduino as it's a less expensive option than trying a new TC4. This time the temperatures went to -1 right when the roast was done so it wasn't that big of a deal.
jessep attached the following image:
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