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Flameless Soybean Roaster " Makes Better Feed"
Conventional soybean roasters have open flames that can scorch the beans, reducing feed value or even catching fire. A Michigan inventor says his new electric-powered roaster "cooks" beans using hot oil inside sealed chambers.
  "It's a totally new concept in roasting soybeans that's automatic and fireproof," says Clifford Wetzel, of Ithaca.
  The 32-ft. long, stainless steel machine consists of a Teflon-coated auger inside a 14-in. dia. tube. The first 20 ft. of the tube is surrounded by a 20-in. dia. "heating chamber" that holds 165 gal. of oil, heated by four electric heating elements. A 4-in. thick layer of fiberglass around the heating chamber keeps heat in as beans are augered through.
  Beans feed into the roaster from a hopper at one end. It takes 1 1/2 hours to pass through. Beans are cooled in the top 12 ft. of the unit. The auger drops them into a pile at the far end of the machine.
  "It sells for about $23,000 which is comparable to other soybean roasters. But it cooks much more evenly and there's no danger of fire so you don't have to watch it at all," says Wetzel. "It'll run by itself for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Conventional roasters can cook more beans per day but not of the same quality.
  "Roasting soybeans increases their nutritional value because the fat is left in the beans. The University of Wisconsin has been testing my machine for more than a year with good results. They've found that it'll roast 5,000 lbs. every 24 hours which is enough for a herd of 1,000 to 2,000 milk cows. It can be equipped with a crusher that'll crush the beans as they come out of the machine."
  According to Wetzel, the auger flighting is covered by Teflon to provide a smooth flow of beans and to eliminate steel shavings in the feed. The unit is also equipped with an adjustable temperature control.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Clifford Wetzel, 2575 W. Washington Rd., Ithaca, Mich. 48847 (ph 517 875-4868).

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1999 - Volume #23, Issue #4