I purchased my Behmor from Seattle Coffee Gear. It was kind of a no brainer (no this is not an endorsement). They didn't charge tax or shipping...AND they gave me a free 1 lb bag of green coffee beans. It was the best deal.
Since I didn't have to pay for those green beans, I put them to good use in testing my new roaster.
Reading the Behmor manual, it says over and over again how important it is to run 4 quarter pound batches through the roaster to learn how it works. After using it, I would agree.
I rant 4 different types of roasts and graphed them below. Unfortunately, I didn't think to keep track of all the key events in my roast like I should have. Here are my thoughts on the initial testing:
*Quick key: In the data table, I tracked when the beans turned from green to yellow (yellow), when they turned brown (brown), first crack (orange), and when I started the cooling process (blue). These colors do not correlate to the graph.
P1 (Blue Line): The Behmor pre-program 1 basically runs the roaster at full heat. So it blasts the beans and then keeps them there. This was my fastest roast.
P2 (Orange Line): Starts off at full power, then drops off to 75%, then goes back to full power at the end. I'm not sure how I feel about the flat line in the middle of the roast. Everything I am seeing now says the coffee should always be progressing upward, otherwise it stalls the roast.
P3 (Grey Line): This program steps the heat up in 2 stages. This was actually the first program I ran, and I didn't do as good a job of keeping track of all the stages. I like this program, but I'll have to see how it works with my coffee. I'm worried that each stage is too long and will stall the coffee at different intervals.
Custom (Yellow Line): I found a guy on a forum who found a way to get more of a standard curve out of a Behmor, so I tried it. This coffee got hotter, roasted longer and didn't flat line anywhere. This is the program I will probably favor as I start to test on my coffee. The main concern for me is that I hit first crack at Mach 4 with my hair on fire. I cut the roast shortly after because I was already hitting second crack on some. I will need to find a way to slow the end of the roast down so I can get a good medium roast instead of a dark roast.
Overall, I'm very excited at how I will be able to develop my beans. I would really like to nail down a roast pattern in 7 lbs of green bean R&D, but we'll see how it goes. I also want to try to do a tasting panel to help with choosing the best roast, because ultimately it's about making something people enjoy.