The small computer controlled roaster (CCR) was developed for use in homes. It was a custom prototype run of ten systems that are now all sold. I am not going to make any more of these. All future efforts will be for the larger gas-fired commercial roasters roasters where custom electronics and software are being added to commercial gas fired roasters.
The CCR is designed for precision roasting, from sample and cupping size to production. It also meets the needs of coffee afficionados who want to determine the best roasting profile for his or her own taste. In either case, precision profiles are complex and possible only with highly accurate roaster control. Such sophisticated profiles require the flexibility, repeatability, and fine-grained control of computer-controlled roasting.
The CCR was designed to work with a custom modified HotTop. It is not possible to use my software with an ordinary roaster.
See Sweet Maria's web page for photos from a Home Roasters Get-Together in June 2005 where the CCR made its debut. Note that this site and others have misspelled his name. It is Jeffrey Pawlan.
The Computer-Controlled Roaster (CCR) combines a specially modifed roaster, a precision interface unit, and a software program that lets you:
Tom Owens of Sweet Maria's Coffee: Well, everyone had HotTop envy, because the star of the event was Jeffrey Pawlan's CCR roaster ... meaning PC Computer Controlled . . . It was his CCR (Computer Controlled Roaster), in this case, a HotTop, that was simply amazing.
Richard Simoni, CCR Owner: Jeff is a real original thinker, and obviously we can expect him to rattle our coffee cages.
Spencer Star, Star Coffee, Inc.: I have purchased almost a dozen different home roasters over the past 15 years and have never been satisfied because I didn't have enough flexibility to alter the roast profile in a controlled manner that can be reproduced. Jeffrey Pawlan's Computer Controller for the Hot Top Roaster finally gives me the flexibility and control I have always wanted. It's a great piece of professional equipment and the price is very reasonable for this kind of equipment. We use it to develop our own blends in small batches. We then bring the samples and a printout of our roast profile to our roaster, which saves an enormous amount of time in developing the final roast in 400 pound batches. Many thanks to Jeffrey for a job well done.
Greg Humphrey, CCR Owner: Jeffrey, After completing over 20 roasts on the CCR HotTop, I thought I would take a few moments to give you some feedback on the roaster.
Let me start by saying I was extremely pleased with the quality of the modifications you performed on my coffee roaster. The fit and finish was top notch, and I am confident that everything about your modifications from the custom-machined aluminum housing to the industrial quality electronic components will outlast the original roaster. It was obvious from the start that you put a lot of effort into your modifications.
Also obvious is the amount of effort you put into the CCR HotTop software. I feel the software offers a lot of flexibility without being overly complicated. In fact, the software was intuitive and easy to learn. I love the automatic mode in which you enter a profile and the software controls the various functions of the roaster to follow your profile. I also love the fact that your software gives one total manual control over a roast, if desired.
Of course, the greatest thing about your modifications and software is the incredible control and consistency they give you over the roasting process. For example, if you decide that kona tastes best when it is roasted to an ending bean temperature of 436 degrees with 5 minutes between the start of first crack and the start of second crack, then no problem. With the automatic mode, you can repeat that roast every single time.
I have used other roasters with programmable profile control, but these other roasters do not offer the consistency that the CCR HotTop does. It does not matter whether it is 60 degrees in my garage (where I roast) or 75 degrees, the CCR HotTop will correct for any differences automatically and produce the same roast time after time.
The end result of this kind of consistency and control is the best tasting coffee I have ever had. The CCR HotTop allows you to dial-in a roast to your exact tastes. With the consistency and control your modifications allow, you know that when you make a change to the profile, it is that change that is affecting the taste of the coffee instead of some other variable.
As you can tell by now, I am extremely happy with the CCR HotTop. The only problem I have run into is that now I am spoiled, and I don't think I could ever go back to a roaster that did not offer this level of control.
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