Help on new beginning

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
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#1: Post by CafeAgrelli »

Hi guys,

I'm about to start roasting my own coffee and for that I was looking for roasters that I could start. I found one on the Facebook Market that looks very good and the owner said it was like new, he's asking for $800, but I bargain to make a deal for $500. It's Hottop Roaster Basic, what do you think? Is it good to start with? Or do you suggest something simpler?

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#2: Post by mrgnomer »

Hottop roasters are all basically the same under the hood, I think. They vary with the control panel, probes and interfacing. I have an old programmable. Besides cleaning, filter replacement and a new heating element all the parts are still original and I'm still roasting with it. Haven't counted how many roasts, probably over a 1000. They're easy to work on and pretty solid. Parts are still available. If you can get a good condition one for $500 I think it's a good deal.

It's not hard to roast with. As a drum roaster the roasts tend to have more body than a fluid bed. I roast 230g at a time. Control is not the greatest and my Hottop preheat is from low temp, short preheat, dump in the beans and goes higher in stages you can set and control for the roast. It produces a good bit of smoke so venting is advised. Chaff collection is not bad and cooling after the ejection is a sifting tray, which is good.

I started with an iRoast fluid bed which had a lower capacity and roasted much brighter. It was a good starting roaster but I soon upgraded to the Hottop and am still using it. I'd say study a bit and learn the fundamentals of roasting, take notes,'s like espresso extraction. Very rewarding and not that hard to get the hang of if you're ok with putting in some time.
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