Help controling my Giesen W1 gas roaster

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Help controling my Giesen W1 gas roaster

Postby wgalex » Mon Oct 28, 2013 3:02 pm

Good day TMC community,

I own a small Giesen W1 gas roaster (the basic one) and apart from a manual (and inconsistent) flame control I can;t do much to it. Is there any way of conecting it to a laptop and use a freeware roasting software (typica for example ...) to get a better control over the flame (for example set it to 10,30,60,100%), maybe get some control over the fan (lower the airflow at first so that I keep moisture inside, turn it up at the end when the beans develop from the inside) and more importantly to get consistent roast profiles of my beans ?

I'd like to state that I'm no electrician but I do have a good one that could help. He just need some giudance I guess.

Any help with this would help me a lot.

Looking forward to your replys

Best regards, Alex

p.S. I have uploaded some pics of the control panel, I hope they help. They are high rez so I'm not able to upload them here, here's the dl link (.rar) : http://we.tl/LwbaPvCIWs
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RE: Help controling my Giesen W1 gas roaster

Postby bruceb » Mon Oct 28, 2013 4:11 pm

Hi Alex,
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There is probably no easy answer to this, particularly since it is unlikely that anyone here is familiar with a Giesen roaster. You should first read through this thread. In it you will see that our very own member GreenBean has written a program that will take care of the software aspect of your problem. As to the hardware, I'm afraid you are on your own.
The RoastLogger program is written with a character recognition module that would allow you to use an inexpensive webcam to read your display and the program will present you with a curve of your roast. Controlling your roaster with the PC, however, will be a very different problem and will definitely require some (possibly complicated) hardware manipulation.
The way I would do this is to take it in steps. Try the OCR software and webcam first and when you see your roast curves you can then begin thinking about trying to find a way to control the gas flow.
Please keep us informed on your progress and ask questions as they arise. Perhaps someone will appear with more knowledge and ideas of how to go about this. Good luck! :D
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I decided I needed a bit of a change so I roasted some Monsooned Malabar. That was a change!
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Postby GreenBean » Mon Oct 28, 2013 4:29 pm

Welcome to TMC, Alex. :D There are a number of software solutions for computer control of small electrically heated roasters. These include the RoastLogger and Artisan. As Bruce has mentioned, computer control of a gas fired roaster involves some additional challenges and safety issues. These include finding a suitable gas control valve and the hardware to drive it and ensuring safety in flame out and reignition. I believe these issues have been, or are being, tackled by some people on homeroasters.org, see this thread. I suggest you address your question to them to see if they can help you.
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Postby Tonio » Tue Oct 28, 2014 2:51 pm

This machine is not so easy. The problem is its gas regulator, very simple. You have to set the temperature with one knob; once the temperature is reached, the regulator keep it in sinusoidal wave... In my opinion, for true and comfortable roasting, the gas regulation have to be changed or modified in this machine.

You may plug off both PT100 sensors from simple temperature meters at the control panel. You may connect them to any appropriate thermometer (for example Phidgets 1048) and run the measurements with Artisan. You may also buy another couple of PT100 sensors; plug in these sensors in better places, and connect them as mentioned to Artisan, Typica etc.
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Postby GreenBean » Tue Oct 28, 2014 5:47 pm

This is an old thread that may have been resurrected by mistake as it is exactly one year since the previous post. I am commenting on this In case anyone is reading this in future looking for advice on computer control of a roaster. The Phidget mentioned by Tonio is only suitable for reading thermocouples not for control. A TC4 or TC4C would be much more suitable for this service as, in addition to reading thermocouples, they provides interfaces to control a roasters heater and fan. See my above post dated Oct 28th, 2013 for initial information on the additional challenges associated with computer control of gas roasters.
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Postby CakeBoy » Thu Oct 30, 2014 8:54 pm

Welcome Alex :)
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Postby Tonio » Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:41 pm

Green Bean, thank you for advice about Arduino and TC4. The control of the roaster is much more interesting and also much more demanding. Anyway, the Giesen W1M has in my opinion very bad gas control, and its terometers are just ordinary. Its owner has to install new termometer or even new probes to obtain any possibility of reasonable roasting experience. I have found this way convenient.

I want to rebuild my GW1M, too (nobody bought it, we do not want to roast with its fabric setup). First, the gas regulator seems to be most important in this goal. It is hard to understand why Giesen still uses such bad gas controllers... In contrary, I have found Joper roasters have manual gas regulators with similiar look. But they work much better than Giesen regulators. The best idea is to find any electronic controlled gas regulator. Thanks for link to the homeroasters.org.
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