What grind setting are you on?
So, Ive been working with my new (2nd hand) kit, and after much playing with grind, tamp and beans (beans from Veneziano in Richmond, buying fortnightly, only grinding what I need from those sealable bean bags) Im getting some reliable shots right at the end of the gold zone on the pressure gauge.
And while the coffee itself is pretty tasty, Im still getting these shots in probably 10-15 seconds, not 25-30 for 30ml. Coffee comes out with a nice golden colour, but its not that nice, viscous, honey-like pour that Ive seen on youtube on this same kit.
So I know its possible to achieve, but for the life of me, I cant get it! If I try to dose up or tamp harder to slow it down, the pressure gauge goes beserk and its slow, but bitter tasting and thin.
Ideas? Have been trawling here for weeks for some knowledge but Im coming up blank.....
Perhaps I should be satisfied to have tasty coffee, but then I guess I wouldnt be here if I wasnt caught up in a search for consistent perfection!
What grind setting are you on?
Use the search function.. http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1257241858Originally Posted by 4A6B6F60514C6B6F600E0 link=1258511301/0#0 date=1258511301
All been asked and answered before in other posts...
You can not ASSUME any thing...
1: What cleaning cycle ?
2: What cleaning agent ?
3: When did you last do a correct back flush
4: When did you last do a correct descale
5: Have you ever removed and cleaned the shower screen
6: How old and how often have you used the unit
7: What grinder are you using and what setting
8: Which baskets are you using ?
9: There are 3 digits stamped into the black lable of the unit that you can see after you open the rear door fully up... What are these 3 numbers...
10: Where did you buy it from
11: What beans are you using
12: What / Where is teh Sweet Spot
13: 5 cent piece test
14: How heavy a tamp ?
With most of these answered... Use the search function - part 4
and you should be able to work out many of the issues at hand..
Last of all where are you located..
If youre happy with your dose and tamp (and it sounds like you should be), you should avoid changing them and grind finer for a longer pour.
It all comes down to grind / dose / tamp.
You should be dosing enough coffee into the PF so that there is about 3mm (or so) from the top of the compressed puck to the top of the basket (or roughly 1/2 - 3/4 of the steel portion of the sunbeam tamp if you are using that). Once you can get the level consistent, then you can start playing around with the grind and changing the coarseness / fineness to quicken / lengthen the pour as you see fit.
The EM0480 is not micro-adjustable, in that the steps are quite large and will make big changes to the pour time. The other limiting factor of the 0480 grinder is that you can get quite inconsistent results as the volume of beans reduces in the hopper (mine used to do this, but as it all "wore in" seems less problematic now).
Your symptom of the gauge "jumping" sounds like a combination of too finer of a grind and basket underdosed. The 6910 does not generally like being underdosed.
You may also find that your first shot is a touch quicker than the 2nd (if pulled one after the other), I attribute this to grinds being left in the chamber of the 480 and being stale (hence, why I make the Mrss coffee first, then my own ;)) Stale grinds will flow quicker than fresh.
Practice, practice and practice some more. If you are going to make changes to your routine, make sure you only change 1 thing at a time (usually grind).
i just poured a few shots on my 6900 and
as Senator has said
"It all comes down to grind / dose / tamp." *is very true
my 6900 likes a very high dose compared to my HX machine, when using the sunbeam tamper if it goes in below the metal bit on the tamp i start to think "underdosed"
i like to give the 6900 a fine grind and a medium / light tamp
its a very fine grind gap between, choke, nice shot and gusher
keep working on it,
Originally Posted by 79565F5D4A755956595F5D555D564C380 link=1258511301/2#2 date=1258516936
Okay, in no particular order here:
1. Last clean was when I got it about 3 months ago. That involved a descale (using the SB descale solution and as per the instruction book), clean (using the SB tablet as per the instruction book), removed the shower screen assembly, replaced the group seal with new, and put in a new anti-calc filter. Plan is to repeat that every 3 months when my Brita filter gets replaced (the seal probably every 6 though)
2. Unit is a couple of years old, got off evilbay from someone who claimed not to use it too often. Aside from needing a good clean, all seems good? Still has extended warranty from HN.
3. Its used maybe 4 times a week, Sat and Sun.
4. Grinder is em0450 as detailed - pull the thing apart every Sunday, clean ALL the grinds out etc etc. Anything below 14 or 15 setting chokes the machine.
5. Beans are Veneziano as detailed, always roasted within a couple of weeks of me picking up my little batches.
6. Single floor baskets, everything is heated and flushed with water, then dried 15-20 mins before I starting working with it.
7. Little number on the back is 447 (the first number is little faint, but 95% sure its a 4)
8. Tamp is a fairly firm one, but not like elbows up, shoulders down or anything - just a good firm push and twist.
But now, the 5 cent piece test, must admit failure there. And given some of the other comments, I think I may have an underdosing problem....for ages I was over-extracting until I reduced the dose to maybe 4-5mm below the edge, and then pushed out the grind to 14-15. Thats what got me to where I am now, with the right pressure, but quick shots.
I was reducing the dose based on reading somewhere that if you dose and tamp, and load up the handle, that if you remove it, it should be pretty untouched. Maybe Ive gone too far?
Hmm....thanks for the ideas, will report back on Sunday and share results.
this is why the 5 cent thing is an indicator of the dose, to less no print to much and the Ghead busts up your tamp. very fine line to the good shotsOriginally Posted by 7554505F6E7354505F310 link=1258511301/6#6 date=1258611310
grind finer, dose up a bit then build in your tamp
i pulled some shots this arvo 6900
i dosed filling the basket
tapped on the bench
dosed a bit more
finger chopped (tamped) / evened the grinds level across the top of the basket
tamped firmly bit not "hard"
shots ran about 20 sec (bit fast at the end) but were pretty good
your using the deep double basket arnt you?
If youre basing that on the pressure/extraction dial... dont ;)I was reducing the dose based on reading somewhere that if you dose and tamp, and load up the handle, that if you remove it, it should be pretty untouched. Maybe Ive gone too far?
The correct reading varies from machine to machine, but should be just into the red zone on most 6910s. My experience is similar to yours - an extraction that goes into the gold zone is a 10-15 second gusher and while not unpleasant to drink with milk lacks any depth of flavour. So the advice to updose and reduce your grind sounds good... OTOH if the machine goes from a gusher to choking in a click or two on the EM0450, this may indicate a fault with the machine - especially if the pressure gauge is going crazy. Think someone has posted this problem before but cant recall the outcome...
PS - hopefully you wont need to call on it - but you will likely find that the extended warranty only applies to the original purchaser. IME those things arent worth the paper they are printed on anyway, unfortunately.
Wrong...Originally Posted by 3A17570 link=1258511301/8#8 date=1258679742
Yes it varies from machine to machine but teh last dozen that I have seen would choke and never make a pour even close to the RED Zone.. Te last two are just great with a run between 11 and 12...
Do the SB sweet spot test to check where the key spot is and as to how you gauge is calibrated.. If it is ever pulled apart and or you have scale build up it will change... After a chemical back flush and or de scale is performed; check before and after- The results will speak for them selves.
Manage the grind / Dose / Tamp according to ya beans (Fresh Vs stale) and the gauge about 1/2 to 1 hr at most in advance of your sweet spot.
Anything else, and your deluding you self and trying to have the machine and or grinder compensate for user issues as to your method or stale beans.
As a long term user (Have had 5) and still have two... One in use in an office and supporting a number of other users... I am well across most of the issues and little tricks; that these units need, to perform at their best. It is a shame, but miss information and assumptions result in most problems being PEBFAG...
Originally Posted by 6F4E4A4574694E4A452B0 link=1258511301/6#6 date=1258611310Sounds like a good approach...1. Last clean was when I got it about 3 months ago. That involved a descale (using the SB descale solution and as per the instruction book), clean (using the SB tablet as per the instruction book), removed the shower screen assembly, replaced the group seal with new, and put in a new anti-calc filter. Plan is to repeat that every 3 months when my Brita filter gets replaced (the seal probably every 6 though)
If ya have the receipt.. Ya may be OK... *It was a gift from them to you ???2. Unit is a couple of years old, got off evilbay from someone who claimed not to use it too often. Aside from needing a good clean, all seems good? Still has extended warranty from HN.
Turn off at the wall after use / where it may be some time / next day...3. Its used maybe 4 times a week, Sat and Sun.
May be an over kill.... *Depends on how oily the beans are...4. Grinder is em0450 as detailed - pull the thing apart every Sunday, clean ALL the grinds out etc etc. Anything below 14 or 15 setting chokes the machine.
Sounds OK... Vs usually provide top shelf stuff...5. Beans are Veneziano as detailed, always roasted within a couple of weeks of me picking up my little batches.
Single floor DOUBLE SHOT for all coffees... Pull short if ya want a single or a strong coffee with less caffeine.6. Single floor baskets, everything is heated and flushed with water, then dried 15-20 mins before I starting working with it.
Keep the dual floor single shot to do the Sweet spot test....
Manufactured in October 2007 - Is it RED ?7. Little number on the back is 447 (the first number is little faint, but 95% sure its a 4)
Good... To many try to do 15kg plus and never test on scales and end up over tamping... Can also snap the spouts and or damage the lip - leaving a burr, which makes the pour look funny.. *:o8. Tamp is a fairly firm one, but not like elbows up, shoulders down or anything - just a good firm push and twist.
Dose level is critical or you will hasten the ware and damage to teh collar....But now, the 5 cent piece test, must admit failure there. And given some of the other comments, I think I may have an underdosing problem....for ages I was over-extracting until I reduced the dose to maybe 4-5mm below the edge, and then pushed out the grind to 14-15. Thats what got me to where I am now, with the right pressure, but quick shots.
A: Needs to have a slight gap between the top of teh tamped coffee and the shower screen.. This allows for the coffee to expand a little..
If over dosed; then when you lock in you stress teh collar as you also in effect - tamping by another 20 - 40 kg as teh shower screen is compacted down on teh coffee. *Then when teh water hits and it trys to expand it then increases the internal pressure yet again..
Thus.. Your tamp is out the door and the machine has to struggle and will choke.. *Any one up in the RED or high end... *With a heavy imprint of the shower screen is killing the machine / collar and compensating as to their grind and tamp method... NOT GOOD.....
B: Do teh 5 cent piece test.. *Note the hight... *Then you just have to manage the grind and tamp to have the gauge display abou 1/2 to 1 hr above that value... In fact it will be visible as the shot should be good.. *If it goes higher or lower it will be due to the grind / tamp / or beans.
I always use a finer grind and a lighter tamp.
Not untouched, but just an imprint of the shower screen- after pulling the shot.. *It should be just untouched when dry... Thus a 5 cent piece is used to test..... When dry, it should be just making an imprint in the dry puck... And that should be the right depth / dose.I was reducing the dose based on reading somewhere that if you dose and tamp, and load up the handle, that if you remove it, it should be pretty untouched. Maybe Ive gone too far?
Look forward to your findings...Hmm....thanks for the ideas, will report back on Sunday and share results.
Trust me... Follow the steps above.. Maintain you cleaning and focus and you will product great coffee and have a machine that will last some time..
OK - I reject your reality, and substitute my own ;DOriginally Posted by 6D424B495E614D424D4B49414942582C0 link=1258511301/9#9 date=1258682405
Simply - you cant get thirty in thirty unless you hit the correct spot for the individual machine - IME (a mere two machines) and from other posts here that tends to be on the brown/red line or just over for many machines around the same age as the OPs. Could well be a generational issue as the dial colours have changed more than once... However in that case the OPs machine is likely to be similar to mine (being a similar age). YMMV as always ;)
Sorry.. Know plenty that get 30 in 30 and still have and serve CRAP coffee...Originally Posted by 725F1F0 link=1258511301/11#11 date=1258695691
So what the SB sweet spot for yours ? *They are all different.. Not generational, more like who fitted the cover...... * If ya know the machine.. You will know why...
Many previously said go teh RED, without knowing the real reasons.. *Opps.. Those that have, have *had collar issues..
If your Sweet spot is in the red... Then fine for you... But until another has tested... Dont assume..
The sweet spot is approx that magic value of about 9 bar... *Thus if your SP was 12:00 and your running at 3:00 you would be screaming about being at 10 or 11 bar... *Work with the facts and measured values.. Not ASSUMPTIONS.
PS. *Yes I have NATA certified Temp and pressure gauges along with flow meters.. In addition to set-up and QA documentation for the said units (EM6910)... *Thus love to have people with a 10cent rule and temp probe discuss Metrology [ (from Ancient Greek metron (measure) and logos (study of)) is the science of measurement] and what works for the EM6910.....
Oh noes - every EM6910 owner now needs to have their machine tested by a qualified professional using NATA certified Temp and pressure gauges in order to know whether their coffee is any good! Hope SB will incorporate this into their user course!! ;) ;D
Also still giggled like a schoolgirl ;)
Originally Posted by 1F30393B2C133F303F393B333B302A5E0 link=1258511301/12#12 date=1258697278
Mine is around 1 oclock
Anywhere near or in the red is a choker.....
In the gold suggested good spot is too fast.
Lets start a thread on where the best is for everyone and find out how far they range...
Cant see the red zone being good. The red zone is exactly that like on a tacho.....limiter or valve bounce city ;D
No, every user has a calibrated group handle basket...Originally Posted by 7855150 link=1258511301/13#13 date=1258704166
Put it in when empty and run a manual shot a couple of times... That will show you teh sweet spot.. Why...
Well they want / need 9bar when people use course / stale coffee from the supermarket. Thus the hole in teh bottom has a twist and is a very specific size calculated to give the right back pressure of 9bar... *That way nubs with crappy coffee will and can get a shot of sorts.. *And teh gauge will work. *That is the other reason why the bands are so WIDE... *The issue is min specks gauge and any scale or dirt or coffee grinds up in the valve will impact on the gauge..
It Is an INDICATOR... *And no one should ever use theirs as a reference with another machine... It is the same for the grinders.. Rocky, Sunbeam and many others.. The actual ZERO is different and with the markings etc a setting of 10 on one grinder will not be the same as 10 on another likie grinder..
The truth is out there... *If one wishes to look....
Of teh last 5 I have had, it ranged from 11 to about 2....
But at least knowing that... Fresh beans / grind and Tamp and if the shot looked good and I was around teh sweet spot.. I was happy... If the gauge all of a sudden when way out... Dohoooo *It was usually ME.. *Poor grind / Tamp or the wrong bag of beans... *(The one set aside for visitors *:D )
Originally Posted by 767E666C71150 link=1258511301/14#14 date=1258705902
I tend to agree as to the RED zone... But the one unit that came in at about 2... Meant that 2 to 3 was expected and the red was encroached on.. *Managed to tweek it in teh end to read about 1 after a little work and felt happier... But did nothing to the actual machine and the coffee was the same... GREAT *:D
Its just a visual perception... *Lights On or Lights off... All visual regardless of the actual activity.. Same for coffee *:D *;D *:o *8-) *And I know what I would rather *:P
COFFEE *;) * Trust me *:-*
So an update....
5 cent piece confirmed that my dosing was actually pretty much bang on - left a small imprint of the coin in the puck, but no breaking or cracking.
So my shot played out like this:
1. Beans roasted around the 10/11, ground at 15 setting on the 0450.
2. Grind into container, give it a good shake to break up clumps.
3. Dose into double single floor basket, basically filling it, maybe a touch above the line.
4. Finger smooth to get even distribution across the basket.
5. Tap once to settle grounds.
6. Tamp - again, not all that firm really.
7. Manual shot, into measuring glass.
8. Pressure runs probably one mark past the sweet spot, which was around 12:00-12:30.
9. Shot looks bloody great, thicker and more golden syrupy in colour
10. 30mls takes about 15-20 secs....lovely 5ml of dense golden crema
So, being a milk based drinker, did my milk, and man was it good! Just the slightest hint of bitter, which I was hoping to get from this blend. Missus usually hates coffee without sugar, but I had her taste this and she couldnt get over how smooth and sweet it was.
But, still not 30 in 30! Gah. Think Ill stick with this method and enjoy the beans for the next couple of weekends, maybe tweak the grind up and down one notch and see what happens.....
Thanks for everyones patience and help - Im ordering a new collar and maybe a new group handle too after following some other talk here, I reckon then the kit will be as good as I can get it which will keep me going for (hopefully) a while...
Remember the time starts the moment ya hit the button...Originally Posted by 1736323D0C1136323D530 link=1258511301/16#16 date=1258766615
Tamp - firm but not that firm = Sounds good.... *This way you can just change ya tamp slightly OR ya grind a step finer and see teh result. ( Change only ONE thing at a time and do a couple of shots etc before making another change)
- Remember it will change as teh beans age *;)
Bitter or Acidic as there is a difference as to what causes what.. Maybe a bit darker that I would go...
Glad your getting a great shot, as thats what it is about...
A few spares and regular Maintenance and with a little TLC, it should do you well and set you up for upgraditius in the near future *;D
Now you will understand why 2 + 2 = 5 *8-)
A new style group handle is a Positive move... Ring SB and see if they will send you a Si Spacer for teh group gasket... This will buy you some time as to the collar... If you treat it Right... It may not need replacing for some time... But having one ready to go is a plus. [/edit]
Well, I guess so far we agree on 90%... (gauge varies from machine to machine and is an indicator only - secondary to the result in the cup). *Im still confused though as I cannot get a good pour unless the gauge is somewhere around the line between dark brown and red (about 2 oclock) - yet the sweet spot is just past 12. An extraction at 12 is a ten-second gusher regardless of bean freshness, grind/dose/tamp.
So like the gauge and the 30 in 30 rule - Im inclined to look at the sweet spot test as an indicator only and secondary to whats in the cup (part of the 90% - or the 10%? ;)).
Anyway - Im interested to discuss this more, so as cksyd suggested have created a new thread with poll :)