First roaster

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

#1: Post by Drzmat »

Hi guys, i know this subject has already been beaten to death but anyway, here we go :)

I want to start roasting as a hobby and see how it goes from there.

I am at the "research" phase of the project since a couple of weeks, reading on the forums and everywhere i can get infos.

Would it be a bad idea to start with a Kaldi wide 300 roaster?

I know about the Behmor and Gene cafe options but i fear that i will spend that money and finally buy a Kaldi after anyway...

Another option would be to buy a propane burner and a Whirley pop and start from there, its cheap and the burner could be used for the kaldi after.

Anyway, im here to listen to some advice on the subject.

Thanks in advance! :)

Supporter ♡

#2: Post by ShotClock »

I've no experience with the Kaldi, but think a better first roaster is a fresh roast, or one of the sweet marias popper things. The reason for this is that you don't have to deal with all the gas stuff, and can get more of the sights and sounds of the coffee roasting. If you want to kill the urge to upgrade, I'd go with a cormorant or a huky, maybe even something a bit bigger like an Arc 800. These are quite an investment though, i think it's well worthwhile spending a couple of hundred on a small air roaster to see if you like it first.

Drzmat (original poster)

#3: Post by Drzmat (original poster) replying to ShotClock »

Its funny because im watching some Fresh Roast SR800 videos as we speak.

I definitely should consider it.

Capuchin Monk

#4: Post by Capuchin Monk »

Kaldi Wide 300 would take more to grow out of than Fresh, Behmor or Gene and that's a good thing. Kaldi Wide 300 requires you to set up and operate your own burner and exhaust system which is a good way to learn without spending too much.

Drzmat (original poster)

#5: Post by Drzmat (original poster) replying to Capuchin Monk »

That was my reasoning, more involving and i would not feel the urge to replace it in a year or so....


#6: Post by edgndg »

My only 2 cents, having gone fresh roast -> behmor -> quest is that I don't feel I really started to understand some of the dynamics until I had the quest/thermocouples with ability to see what was going on in artisan. But I did produce quite drinkable coffee on all 3. So I think part of the answer should be based on "are you more a set it and forget it type?" Or more a "I am interested in tinkering, like fussing with dials, etc.".

Drzmat (original poster)

#7: Post by Drzmat (original poster) »

Im definitely interested to learn and mess with the settings, but it will be my first machine.

I need a machine with a decent level of control, without being too overwhelming to use since im new to roasting, and with good online support on forums etc...

I am really interested in using artisan too.

Supporter ❤

#8: Post by Milligan »

Skip the under-$1000 tier of roasters. Other than the Ikawa home and the various crowd funded copies of it (not intended to be a dig at them) you won't be getting the data nor control scheme to replicate what you read online and in books. I'd recommend a roaster with at least BT and ET with fan control and good heat control. Then you can start learning the basics that can be discussed with most other roasters.

With that said, there are some folks that have mastered the popper with TCs and a few mods. Just depends on what you are looking to do.

Drzmat (original poster)

#9: Post by Drzmat (original poster) replying to Milligan »

So something like the Kaldi wide 400 or Kaldi Fortis with the center306 dual thermometer option would be better then.

Or a hottop 2k+ but its a bit more pricey....


#10: Post by littlenut »

Hi Matt,

If a friend asked me for suggestions on what is needed to start home roasting coffee, I would start by telling the friend to get ready to spend more than you expect or live with regrets along the way.

For starting out, I would suggest;

-Fresh Roast SR800

-Razzo Roasting Chamber ... ve_1&crt=1

-Razzo Roasting Chaff Collector Mod ... A959891502

-Search this forum on Temperature monitoring Gear for SR800 and linking to a computer

- 2 Scott Rao Books

If money is not an issue, figure out what size roaster you need/want and then start here;