Air Popcorn Popper Roast Profiles

Discuss roast levels and profiles for espresso, equipment for roasting coffee.
mpdeem
Team HB

#1: Post by mpdeem »

I thought it would be nice to have a thread dedicated to roast profiles specific to air popcorn poppers.

Most of the roast profiles shared here are based on other - quite different roasting platforms. Beyond a very general sense, these profiles are rather difficult to apply to air popper roasting. For example charging temps on the typical profiles posted here are often much higher than what is feasible and/or desirable when roasting on a popper.

If anyone is running Artisan or roast tracking software in other ways tracking their roast profiles - I would love to hear from you. Feel free to post roast profiles and notes. Same applies to PIDs and other modifications - please feel free to share. Please include the type of poppper you use as even among popppers there are many variations.

Many people have started out on poppers, it seems few continue to do so for any great length of time - quickly moving on to another platform. Even if you fall into this catagory - fee free to join in the conversation.

I realize that those of us who roast regularily on air poppers probably represent a tiny minority - nevertheless I hope that there are enough to warrent our own thread. Doesn't matter if your popper is your primary roaster or only a sample/backup roaster - please join in.

Everyone is welcome - whether you are an 'air head' or just want to see how the luddites among us roast (said tongue firmly in cheeck).

Mary

Trjelenc

#2: Post by Trjelenc »

I am long past my popcorn popper days, but I'd be interested in seeing this thread. I feel like most of popper "recipe" discussion gets muddied with drum roaster logic, advice often given by people who don't use a popper.

I'm interested to hear what people using poppers for a long time are having success with. Hell, I've been tempted to buy another popper, compare to my Huky roasts, and test out theories I've had about popper roasting

pcofftenyo
Supporter ♡

#3: Post by pcofftenyo »

Trjelenc wrote: Hell, I've been tempted to buy another popper, compare to my Huky roasts, and test out theories I've had about popper roasting
I bought one of those Popper as a Roaster devices as a sample roaster as it was pretty challenging on my Huky.

Third/current iteration is using a wall-mounted watt-meter. Found that the dial lacks actual fine tuning ability so power usage increases dramatically when I thought it might be more linear.

Upcoming iteration will be the implementation of a thermocouple and Artisan.

Will update.

Pressino

#4: Post by Pressino »

The main problem with developing popcorn popper roast profiles will be the inability of most of them to allow thermostatic control of temperature and control of fan speed. Sweet Maria's Popper is an exception, but still benefits from adding a digital thermocouple. I suppose with a lot of electronic DIY skills one could modify a standard popcorn maker to do what the SM popper + thermocouple thermometer does.

Milligan

#5: Post by Milligan »

A full blown popper build would be fun. I fear I'd end up with $400 worth of phidgets, thermocouples, PIDs, and misc electronics hanging off of a $20 popper :mrgreen:

I'm interested to see graphs and what folks do to these poppers to make them more roast friendly.

Trjelenc

#6: Post by Trjelenc »

Pressino wrote:The main problem with developing popcorn popper roast profiles will be the inability of most of them to allow thermostatic control of temperature and control of fan speed. Sweet Maria's Popper is an exception, but still benefits from adding a digital thermocouple. I suppose with a lot of electronic DIY skills one could modify a standard popcorn maker to do what the SM popper + thermocouple thermometer does.
I think there's still value in users of even unmodded poppers sharing what they find success with, in terms of batch size, final roast time, turning on and off, etc. You also have people who use voltage controllers (obviously affecting fan too unless they mod it).

The big hurdle here will be differences people have in voltage and ambient temps. Makes it hard to find larger trends in what gets good results

pcofftenyo
Supporter ♡

#7: Post by pcofftenyo replying to Trjelenc »

Line voltage differences can be compensated for. The sub $15 power meter line plug from amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08ZD7YL54?ps ... ct_details may be useful in that regard.

The Masetch digital thermometer is $90, a set of 3 3mm X 40mm thermocouple is $14, and Artisan is free. So for about $115 one is up and running. The Artisan setup is pretty easy.

Folks have been modding poppers for about a decade.

mpdeem (original poster)
Team HB

#8: Post by mpdeem (original poster) »

pcofftenyo wrote:I bought one of those Popper as a Roaster devices as a sample roaster as it was pretty challenging on my Huky.

Third/current iteration is using a wall-mounted watt-meter. Found that the dial lacks actual fine tuning ability so power usage increases dramatically when I thought it might be more linear.

Upcoming iteration will be the implementation of a thermocouple and Artisan.

Will update.
What model popper do you have? I have a West Bend Poppery I which has been modified with the seperation of heat and fan switch. This allows me to use the ON/OFF to modulate heat yet leave the fan running. I do two different 30 heat stalls during the drying-yellow phase first few minutes of the roast to slow the ramp up. During the rest of the roast, I do quick little 1-2 second roasts to maintain temperature control to delay reaching 1st Crack too early and otherwise modulate heat. Not at all a perfect system...but it has been good enough for me over the last 11 years of roasting.

I have also adjusted the internal thermostat to raise the heat range - as thermostat on this model ususally set to about 375 F and will kill the heat if you try and go hotter.

Your wall mounted watt-meter sounds interesting - even if it lacks fine tuning. I bought a generic made in ChinaVariac with a giant dial off Amazon - one not specifically intended for coffee roasting. I ended up not using it as simply seperating the heat and fan switch worked well enough for me.

I would reconsider using it now except I think it is too powerful, lacking the fine tuning required for roasting.. My husband has used it -blowing 2 circuits in a row the first day he tried it despite a modest conservative increase of power.

Like you, I am planning to get Artisan and - in my case- several thermocouplers. Currently temperature is monitered via a convential metal cooking thermometer placed midway down the chamber at a slant- mounted from the side exterior through a small driled hole in the chamber. The fit is very snug so I am not worried about heat escaping - but obviously such a gage is not very sensitive or accurate.

I would like to have several thermocouplers placed withing the roasting chamber to capture temperature variation within the beans . My poper has slanted heat vents on the side at the bottom of the roast chamber while the top of the chamber remains open (I removed the plastic cute top for better viewing). I imagine there is considerable ambient temperature variation in the chamber-would like to moniter and track it. I also would like to see the differences in 'thermal heat mass' when amount of beans is increased or decreased. I have noticable a tangable differene when decreasing the amount of unroasted beans as much by 1/2 oz (visual measurement using a measuring cup).

Given the limitations of my roast chamber size (hold between 7-8 oz unroasted beans), I think installing the probes will be a challenge. Fortunately my husband is a retired microwave and software engineer...as well as a profient mechanic...so he will probably figure something out. I will post pictures and details when finished.

I plan on getting the line meter & digital thermometer recommende by pcofftenyo.

Will add Artisan on after I get the temperature monitering in place..hopefully sometime by the New Year. Would love to hear more about your roaster and modifications.

mpdeem (original poster)
Team HB

#9: Post by mpdeem (original poster) »

Trjelenc wrote:I am long past my popcorn popper days, but I'd be interested in seeing this thread. I feel like most of popper "recipe" discussion gets muddied with drum roaster logic, advice often given by people who don't use a popper.

I'm interested to hear what people using poppers for a long time are having success with. Hell, I've been tempted to buy another popper, compare to my Huky roasts, and test out theories I've had about popper roasting
My sentiments exactly. Even fluid bed roasters are often different enough to preclude direct application of roasting profiles and expierences. Even among poppers, there is a large varation of designs especially with regard to heat source design and placement as well as motor size and power. There is substantial design and power difference just between the West Bend Popper I & II. Having gone through several West Bend Poppery I's...I can attest that there is even a decent amount of variation within the same model-especially when buying used (the Poppery I no longer made).

Hope you are inspired to get a popper...even if not, feel free to join in anyway. I believe Chert has a Huky and recently got a popper for sample roasting...I will check and see if he wants to share his expierences here if that is the case.

mpdeem (original poster)
Team HB

#10: Post by mpdeem (original poster) »

pcofftenyo wrote:Line voltage differences can be compensated for. The sub $15 power meter line plug from amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08ZD7YL54?ps ... ct_details may be useful in that regard.

The Masetch digital thermometer is $90, a set of 3 3mm X 40mm thermocouple is $14, and Artisan is free. So for about $115 one is up and running. The Artisan setup is pretty easy.

Folks have been modding poppers for about a decade.
Thanks for the links!!! Greatly appreciated as I am about to get those very upgrade. Sounds like you have played around with poppers....if that is the case would love to hear your expierences.