Getting to Second Crack

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Getting to Second Crack

Postby Handyman » Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:20 pm

I’ve just roasted a bit but have had amazing results with a bread maker/heat gun. I have a nice Bosch gun with a ceramic core and nice control. I tried a Papua New Guinea bean for my first try and it went great. About 9-11min to first crack at around 850F then second at around 15-18min.
Then I tried some Brazil Deterra Sunrise and burned them trying to get to second crack. I find that if I go just past first crack then check them by pulling a few out with a spoon every minute or so and stop it when they get oily they come out great! I wonder if the oil is more of an indicator than the cracks. Sometimes I crank up the heat just as they are starting to crack for a minute then drop it back.
Is this reluctance to go to second crack a characteristic of the bean or maybe the age? I definitely don’t get much second crack out of decaf. I assume it’s due to the processing.
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Re: Getting to Second Crack

Postby theisenm85 » Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:00 am

Decaf is always a bit weird.... due to the processing, starting at a brown color, no chaff, blah blah blah.

In terms of oil vs. second crack...

Significant oil appearance really shouldn't be able to happen before the second crack as far as I know. Certainly some oil, but a decidedly oily appearance should be post second crack territory.

The heat gun may create some weird effects. I don't know what the 850 degrees "means", but that seems quite hot for any sort of ambient temperature in your roasting chamber, so it's hard to know what it was at, or more importantly, what temp the beans were at. Beans should 1st and 2nd crack at relatively specific internal temperatures. 350ish for first, and I believe 390ish for second, though I don't have a reference handy at the moment.

In any case, if you have some pictures of the beans, it'd give everyone a real nice picture of what's going on.

For certain coffees that have trouble getting to second crack, you might try backing off the heat for a little while and going back in. There'd be less risk of burning with a more gradual rise in temperature. (Especially when the heat source is so powerful)
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Re: Getting to Second Crack

Postby fossilsrocks » Tue Oct 14, 2008 5:09 am

"Getting to Second Crack" sounds like the title to a BAD porno! :shock: :lol:
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Re: Getting to Second Crack

Postby gfoster » Wed Oct 15, 2008 4:46 am

Sounds to me like your ramp is too high, you're heating them too fast. Oil isn't good, the oil can go rancid very quickly and I've really gotten away from wanting oily beans... and if they do get oily, it should be a couple days after, not during the roast.

I get to 2nd crack in my behmor with zero oil, so no, I don't think oil is a very good indicator (except to indicate you've gone too far heh).

How long does it take you to roast? Time to 1c, time to 2c, total time?

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Re: Getting to Second Crack

Postby Handyman » Thu Oct 16, 2008 7:44 am

Thanks Folks! Sounds like I'm running a little hot.
The next time I roast I'll take some pictures and experiment with those ideas.
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Re: Getting to Second Crack

Postby swede sd » Sat Nov 29, 2008 2:15 pm

1. If it is taking 9-11 min to get to the first crack, your heat is not too hot. 2. All coffee wll go through two cracks, some just dont have a loud second crack. 3. If your beans are oily, they have gone through the second crack. It would be my guess that if you are using a heat gun, and knowing how noisy they are, you just are not hearing the second crack. 4. Keep roasting, trying to figure out all the little things is half the fun. Even if you screw up a roast or two, its still better than the old stale crap they sell at the grocery store.
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