I am looking at buying an Ambex YM-2 and wanted some comments.  Are there any pitfalls I need to look out for?  Are they a good starter roaster?  Do the beans come out with such a crazy difference anyone will be able to tell?  Is this a bad or good idea?  Thanks for the comments and any advice will be greatly appreciated.


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I believe the YM-2 is a good starter roaster. Depending on the model year, it may or may not have some things that I feel are important for doing consistent roasts. When I got my 2003 model it did not have a digital bean probe, gas pressure gauge or an adjustable gas valve. I was roasting in the dark ages. I got pretty good at it but I wanted to be able to track my roasts better. I have since installed those items. The size is limiting depending on your needs. I quickly added a YM- 15 which I have been using for 8 years now.
I had a YM2 and a YM10. Both were excellent machines. I purchased both new in 2006 and 2007. I realized early on that I was spending all my time at the YM2 and not enough time with the business. The beauty of a YM2 is that is an excellent machine to learn on as well as roast on for a lifetime. It would be very difficult to wear one of these out. If you buy it used make sure you are getting one of the latter models with the US motors as opposed to the Turkish motors. It is a little harder and more expensive to replace. If you buy used you pay from $3500-5500 dollars all dependent on the condition of the machine. These little machines hold their value. If you ever upgrade to a larger size, you will always be able to get your money back. As far as capacity, you usually figure about 80% of the stated capacity. I would always do between 3-3.5# max. Watch the boards and eBay, lots for sale.
Hey thanks so much for your advice and comments.  Did either of yours run off of propane, and if so how much did you use?  I have to due to lack of gas lines in my area.

All my machines ran on NG. Most machines are set up for NG but can easily be converted to Propane.


I used to use a YM 2 at the shop I formerly worked at.  Now I'm starting my own place, and though I haven't roasted a batch on them yet due to construction not being finished, I bought 2 new Ambexes--a YM2 and a YM15.  I'm dying to get back onto them! They're great little machines.  Roast consistency is only as good as the person doing the roasting.
Wasn't Ambex just purchased by another company?  I spoke with one of their reps as SCAA Houston and was amazed at how much he didn't know about Ambex roasters.  As I prodded him for info he said he was new to Ambex because they were just sold to another company (I think US Roaster Corps, but I honestly don't remember).  Anyone know about this?  I would wonder about after purchase service with a new owner.
They were purchased by another company.  A guy named Don at Roaster Authority.  I had some (huge understatement) difficulty with Terry, the former owner.  He basically took my money before I got the machines and had no further contact with me.  I still haven't talked with him since March or so.  Anyways, I found out through another forum (Terry didn't even bother to tell me himself!!!) that they were sold, and so I gave Don (the new owner) a call.  He has been very straight talking and is trying to uphold the integrity of the brand.  He got me my roasters with a relatively quick turn-around time.

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