Time to Upgrade Roaster? - Page 2

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

I only have the M6 now. It took me quite a while to get used to it. I thought going from the M3 to the M6 would be simple; but they're two entirely different roasters. Moving from a M3s to an M6 would probably be easy.

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#12: Post by prof_stack »

For larger batch sizes, reasonable cost, durability, good customer service, and the ability to make great coffee, the Behmor is your ticket right now. Reasonable as in $500.

I've been a fanboy since 2007, but recently added a Hottop 2K+ for better control over the roasts with Artisan software monitoring things. 300g upper limit roast size. It's $1800 new but with possible price increases coming due to all the crap going on now in the world.

The highly rated Bulliet is $3,500 now. If you have the money, go for it.
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#13: Post by TrentFysty »

I recently upgraded from a Hottop that I had heavily modified and used for 7 plus years to an Arc 800. I also considered the Cormorant as an option as well as Buckeye. Based on your needs and if you are willing to go gas, take a strong look at the Cormorant. It will roast 600 grams per roast, isn't super big or heavy compared to other 500 gram roasters and Johan is very responsive. Not sure how long the waitlist is but last I check it was about 4-6 weeks so not too terribly long.

The other consideration is where you are roasting now vs where you would need to roast with a larger roaster. With the Hottop I could roast under the vent hood in my kitchen pretty easily. I was doing two back-to-back roasts with cool-down time in between. With the Arc 800 I set up in an insulated and heated shed with dedicated venting. I love the setup but definitely a different commitment. You may ask yourself where you plan to be in 1-3 years with your roasting. If roasting for more than just your family's needs is in the cards, go with something bigger. Hukys come up used fairly often and you should be able to pick on up for under $1000 depending on the accessories. I've used a friend Huky and it works well but the workflow is more cumbersome than the Arc 800 that I now have.

The Cormorant is small enough to move around and only has one vent hose which makes it easy to use a window as a vent. You still have to figure out your propane situation but I will attest that going from electric to gas has been a game-changer for me in the quality of my roasts. I haven't used the Bullet so can't comment on it.

mbg (original poster)

#14: Post by mbg (original poster) »

Thanks for the great info! That Bullet looks great but with all my other hobbies don't know if my wallet can take it. The Behmor looks attractive but still seems to be limited on size - reviews say 12 oz roast is optimal so really wouldn't same me much time. As suggested, maybe keep what I have for a while and keep looking.


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#15: Post by Capuchin Monk »

mbg wrote:That Bullet looks great but with all my other hobbies don't know if my wallet can take it. The Behmor looks attractive but still seems to be limited on size - reviews say 12 oz roast is optimal so really wouldn't same me much time.
Kaldi Fortis maybe? It can do 600g and cheaper than Bullet.

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#16: Post by ira »

The Behmor might give you a pound capacity, but you give up almost any hope of repeatability and consistency. From where you are, I would think you'd find it a step backwards.


#17: Post by Milligan » replying to ira »

I agree wholeheartedly that the Behmor is not that great for consistency and is much like roasting blind because the given temperatures aren't very helpful other than knowing roughly how far along the roast is. One of the probes measures "chamber" temp which is on the wall far away from the beans. The other (on the newer model) is exhaust temp that doesn't read anything until over have way through the roast when the exhaust kicks on and is in no way indicative of the bean temp as exhaust temp would be in fluid bed roasters.

You can sort out a serviceable recipe specific for the Behmor, the particular voltage supplied, and a consistent ambient temp. However the controls and read outs are so specific to the Behmor that you don't really learn anything more than using a basic air popper that can be applied to other roasters down the road. It will work if high roast volume and low price is the major concern. I would not recommend it to someone who wants to learn more about the craft. It is strictly an appliance. All of this is my opinion after running around 100 roasts on it.

With that said, folks have learned to make very high quality roasts with the machine. I've had a handful of great, many good, and nearly all servicable roasts out of it. So it is capable of doing that with a lot of esoteric, Behmor-specific knowledge.

I found it too fussy and felt it was pointless investing more time into learning things only applicable to itself. There is no way to add a bean temp probe since the full basket rotates within the chamber.

Conclusion, buy the Behmor if you want a cheap, self contained way to make a lot of coffee for yourself and friends with a few weekends of practice. Don't buy it if you want to dive into the craft of roasting exceptional coffee.
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#18: Post by chasfs »

I bought a cheap rotisserie drum air fryer (Crownful 19qt). It took about as long to roast 330g as my Behmor ~25+ minutes - but it's easier to use. Then i started using a k type temp probe and discovered that the Crownful only got up to 330F even when set to 450. This leads me to think that the Behmor only goes up to 330F which is too low/slow for 12oz.

A resistor added in series with the oven's thermister fixed the temp offset and now i can hit first crack in about 15mins for 400g roasting at 450-460F. I tried adding stainless steel rods inside the drum with the beans and that sped up the roast a bit but it's less even and i like the results better without the rods.

Use a k type high temp probe, keep a fire extinguisher handy, vent carefully especially for darker roasts.

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#19: Post by luca »

OK, this might be a really stupid idea, but maybe it's genius, so I thought I'd ask.

If you're happy with the results on the SR800 and you know how to control it ... why not get another one and have two roasters running at once?

Thought it might be worth at least throwing that one out there for consideration ...
LMWDP #034 | 2011: Q Exam, WBrC #3, Aus Cup Tasting #1 | Insta: @lucacoffeenotes


#20: Post by Scracker »

I have had the Kaldi Fortis 600 for about a year now is a great machine for the money . I ended up making my own chaff collection system from a hi temp blower motor from Grainger and 8" duct . For the bean cooler I use a shop vac and 5 gal bucket with a 11" stainless colander. The system Kaldi offers was another $500 shipped and you can't do back to back roasts with the chaff collection converts to the bean cooler