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Thread: Inconsistent shots...

  1. #1
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    Inconsistent shots...

    I've been using my ECM Synchronika for almost a month now... what I've noticed....
    i set the grind right, using similar beans and being consistent with dosage and tamper strength and normally extract a decent 1st shot.... however, I can't replicate that for my second shot (straight after the 1st, as I usually make 2 at a time for myself and wife).
    The second and subsequent shots will take a much longer time to extract (over 15-20s) and eventually taste slightly more bitter and burnt.
    im even modifying my subsequent shots now to coarser grind size and less tampering strength.....

    Initially I thought the machine was new and needed some time and perhaps my technique has not been consistent but no matter what I do, I'm still getting the same results.

    any ideas....?

    thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member Jono_Willmer's Avatar
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    What type of grinder do you use?

    How often do you make coffee? Once a day?

    I'm wondering if maybe the first shot is actually stale, ground coffee left over night in the chute, then the second shot is fresh which might run slower. Adjust your grinder courser then try purging your grinder first and then pull your two shots?

  3. #3
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    Always give the second one to your wife?
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  4. #4
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    Thanks Jono
    im using ECM V Titan which I bought new with the machine.
    i only dose enough for every grind and normally purge the grinder fully before my subsequent grind.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by blonk View Post
    Always give the second one to your wife?
    haha.... have been quietly doing that until couple days ago she complained they are tasting rather bitter

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    Is the basket dry between shots?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris View Post
    Is the basket dry between shots?
    i just wipe it with cloth but I don't usually remove the basket and and wipe underneath as well
    does that make a difference?

  8. #8
    Senior Member Jono_Willmer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenfinger View Post
    Thanks Jono
    im using ECM V Titan which I bought new with the machine.
    i only dose enough for every grind and normally purge the grinder fully before my subsequent grind.
    Can I suggest you try and make a few shots in a row with a decent amount of coffee in the grinder, I wonder if it's due to inconsistency of grind between the two shots.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono_Willmer View Post
    Can I suggest you try and make a few shots in a row with a decent amount of coffee in the grinder, I wonder if it's due to inconsistency of grind between the two shots.
    you mean leaving enough beans in the Shute for multiple shots rather than dosing enough for every grind?

  10. #10
    Senior Member Jono_Willmer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenfinger View Post
    you mean leaving enough beans in the Shute for multiple shots rather than dosing enough for every grind?
    Exactly, try maybe 100-200 grams.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono_Willmer View Post
    Exactly, try maybe 100-200 grams.
    ok.. will do that... I do think this will have help with consistency of grinds
    funny enough and this may open up a can of worms.... I've always been told to dose just enough for every grind and not to leave beans in the hopper... even for few hours?

    want to know what your thoughts on this

  12. #12
    Senior Member Jono_Willmer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenfinger View Post
    ok.. will do that... I do think this will have help with consistency of grinds
    funny enough and this may open up a can of worms.... I've always been told to dose just enough for every grind and not to leave beans in the hopper... even for few hours?

    want to know what your thoughts on this
    It's a catch 22 yes, but most grinders are designed to have weight of beans loaded into them sadly.

    I personally leave my coffee in the hopper and the improvement in grind quality out weighs the loss in freshness(I haven't found it makes a huge difference in taste, but it is noticeable) the main thing is not to have ground coffee lying around for ages, thus why I like to purge my grinder to make sure it's all fresh.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member simonsk8r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenfinger View Post
    ok.. will do that... I do think this will have help with consistency of grinds
    funny enough and this may open up a can of worms.... I've always been told to dose just enough for every grind and not to leave beans in the hopper... even for few hours?

    want to know what your thoughts on this
    Yeah definitely try putting enough coffee into the hopper.
    I think what that's referring to is moreso don't grind a bunch of coffee and leave the ground coffee sitting for a long time. So yeah you grind and dose coffee freshly per cup still. I reckon it's okay to leave beans out for a little, even so, once you're finished it's really easy and pretty quick to just close the latch on the hopper, and decant the beans back into their bag when you're not using them.

    I even bought a bug vacuum which I use for the throat of the grinder to get all the beans out and easily put them into the bag! Quicker than spooning them out

    But yeah, some grinders it seems don't take too kindly to single dosing, and seems to have to do with those last scraggly beans that try to grind through while jumping around, and not getting ground at a similar consistency as the ones prior.

    So yeah I reckon try filling the hopper more, purging a bit (experiment here, 3g, 5g..), and keep everything as consistent as possible with each shot pulled (same dose, distribution etc)

    Let us know how you go!
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  14. #14
    Senior Member trentski's Avatar
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    Sounds like you still have old grinds even after purging. Try purging before your first shot to clear out the old grinds.
    simonsk8r likes this.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Magic_Matt's Avatar
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    Yep, I see two issues here:

    1. stale grounds in the first shot
    2. inconsistent/lack of weight on the burrs

    My second crack is if you want to single-dose, buy a grinder designed for this purpose. Try to keep the hopper partly full and make sure you purge sufficiently before the first shot and you should be fine. If you're concerned about waste, remember that a sink shot wastes 22g, whereas purging costs 4 or 5 or so.

    The V-Titan has a pretty narrow throat and doesn't retain much above the burrs - so if you really worried about beans going stale in the hopper it's pretty easy to remove it and pour them into a valved bag (though that's a bit OTT even for me. I don't notice any significant changes in quality leaving some beans in the hopper, though I try to minimise this after the last shot of a session).
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  16. #16
    Senior Member simonsk8r's Avatar
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    What they said!

    Whilst on the subject, does everyone purge in between shots? I do a little purge (3g or so), sweep the chute and quick vacuum out of paranoia haha, but wondering if it's necessary? Obviously if it's been sitting for a few hours probably good to clear out the grinds in the chute and purge through a bit, but a few minutes, half an hour? A waste of life even pondering this at ALL? XD

  17. #17
    Senior Member level3ninja's Avatar
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    I don't purge between shots as I make them a minute or two apart. Have tried it and it makes no difference that I could discerne.
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  18. #18
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    May I ask is The V Titan a stepped adjustment or micrometric?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by coffeeguy84 View Post
    May I ask is The V Titan a stepped adjustment or micrometric?
    pretty sure it's micrometric

  20. #20
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    Hi guys, thanks all for your valuable contributions.
    i think you guys are spot on... after dosing through a hopper half full of beans, the inconsistent issue is gone!
    The grinder's burr is just not designed for single grind, and it's too light for the burr.

    I used to have a Quamar Q50 and had never any issues with just dosing for single grind...

    what at would have been the difference...?

    still trying to get used to seeing beans in the hopper... but I'm sure I'll get used to that. I normally chew up 500g beans in 7-10 days....

  21. #21
    Senior Member Magic_Matt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coffeeguy84 View Post
    May I ask is The V Titan a stepped adjustment or micrometric?
    Micrometric, driven by a very nicely machined, all metal worm gear.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Jono_Willmer's Avatar
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    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    I will be surprised if you taste any stale coffee in that time, I'm sure you'll taste better coffee due to consistency.
    Magic_Matt and greenfinger like this.

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