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Thread: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

  1. #1
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    Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi,

    This is my first post on the forum but I was a lurker for a while :-)

    Let me start how I ended up with the EM6910.
    Our 4 years old DeLonghi Espresso machine started to fall apart so I decided to buy a new one. I love good coffee but I never researched about how to make the perfect espresso at home. This is why I was very happy with our pressurised basket Delonghi coffee machines until now.

    About a month ago I started my research on espresso machines and ended up on coffeesnobs like everyone who cares about what goes into their cup. Very quickly reduced my choice to the Rancilio Silvia and the Sunbeam EM6910. I did want to buy the Silvia but I decided on the EM6910 on these points:
    - Its not only me who makes coffee in the family. I thought the EM6910 will be easier to use for my wife and other people in the family.
    - Its fast to get the machine ready in the mornings.
    - My wife can use the pressurised basket with her pre-ground coffe. She likes coffee but not into quality like me.
    - I could get the machine with extended warranty and the EM0410 grinder for $400 less than the Silvia/Rocky setup.
    - I do want to upgrade to a heat exchanger machine down the road.

    The EM6910 makes awsome coffee but Im still learning how to consistently make the perfect espresso. I figured out the grind sizes for the decaf and the Columbian beans I have so usually my tamping is off.

    Anyway here is why I created this post.
    Ive tried to backflush the machine twice already but Im not sure if everything is right. I use the supplied disc in the double basket but the pressure gauge only reaches the end of the dark brown area, it doesnt go into the red when I open the water flow.
    By the way the areas on the gauge seem to be different from gauge in the manual and on the videos around so I guess I have a newer version (see attached pic)

    Do I need to be worried about not reaching the red area during backflush?

    Thanks


  2. #2
    A_M
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Quote Originally Posted by 7C7D7C786D70190 link=1265461286/0#0 date=1265461286
    Hi,

    This is my first post on the forum but I was a lurker for a while :-)

    Let me start how I ended up with the EM6910.
    Our 4 years old DeLonghi Espresso machine started to fall apart so I decided to buy a new one. I love good coffee but I never researched about how to make the perfect espresso at home. This is why I was very happy with our pressurised basket Delonghi coffee machines until now.

    About a month ago I started my research on espresso machines and ended up on coffeesnobs like everyone who cares about what goes into their cup. Very quickly reduced my choice to the Rancilio Silvia and the Sunbeam EM6910. I did want to buy the Silvia but I decided on the EM6910 on these points:
    - Its not only me who makes coffee in the family. I thought the EM6910 will be easier to use for my wife and other people in the family.
    - Its fast to get the machine ready in the mornings.
    - My wife can use the pressurised basket with her pre-ground coffe. She likes coffee but not into quality like me.
    - I could get the machine with extended warranty and the EM0410 grinder for $400 less than the Silvia/Rocky setup.
    - I do want to upgrade to a heat exchanger machine down the road.

    The EM6910 makes awsome coffee but Im still learning how to consistently make the perfect espresso. I figured out the grind sizes for the decaf and the Columbian beans I have so usually my tamping is off.

    Anyway here is why I created this post.
    Ive tried to backflush the machine twice already but Im not sure if everything is right. I use the supplied disc in the double basket but the pressure gauge only reaches the end of the dark brown area, it doesnt go into the red when I open the water flow.
    By the way the areas on the gauge seem to be different from gauge in the manual and on the videos around so I guess I have a newer version (see attached pic)

    Do I need to be worried about not reaching the red area during backflush?

    Thanks
    NO...

    It could be any where from 10:30 to 3:00 They are all different..

    What chemical cleaner are you using or is this just with plain water ?

  3. #3
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Thanks for your answer

    Plain water but Ive ordered the EM0020 tablets and planning to use it in a couple of month.

  4. #4
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Welcome to CS mate.

    Dont fret about the gauge looking different. I thought the same thing when I purchased mine last year, it seems they did a few little updates - Noticeably the gauge and the end of the steamer and water wands.

    Regarding the backflush, I have found if there are some grinds in the basket sometimes the cleaning disc does not seal properly and it tends to leak more water through and not backflush properly. This usually fixes itself the next time or I simply give it a wipe.

    After learning about backflushing, I now backflush after every session of coffee with water and once a month with the tablet - at first I did not backflush at all, my mistake.

    I would also recommend the sunbeam course you are entitled too with the purchase. I found I did not learn as much as I was hoping but it was good to direct questions at and also socialise with other coffee lovers!
    Mind you I did pick up a few good tips about the 6910 which I would not have so I am glad to have done it.

    Enjoy the machine!

  5. #5
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Sweet find.
    New purchase of one of these also.
    Would a backflush of say once a week (with just water) be the go?
    ie: would probably have 12-15 cups thru it in this time...

    cheers

    PS: as a side note:
    I just backflushed for the first time (had about 12 shots thru it)
    used the double basket (single floor) and first time was sweet, went all the way into "red" zone.
    I made another coffee after this, and then thought - well I will do that again. This time it only went to about not even 10 oclock on the dial... what would have been the problem there? :-/

  6. #6
    A_M
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Quote Originally Posted by 757E7F7A7A7F757762677A72160 link=1265461286/4#4 date=1301450609
    Sweet find.
    New purchase of one of these also.
    Would a backflush of say once a week (with just water) be the go?
    ie: would probably have 12-15 cups thru it in this time...

    cheers

    PS: as a side note:
    I just backflushed for the first time (had about 12 shots thru it)
    used the double basket (single floor) and first time was sweet, went all the way into "red" zone.
    I made another coffee after this, and then thought - well I will do that again. This time it only went to about not even 10 oclock on the dial... what would have been the problem there?* *:-/
    Read the manual.

    With water once or twice a week.. All depends

    What do you mean all to teh red zone ? That is over dosing ?

    What is you sweet spot ? (search CS for more info)

    Next time to 10 = What beans / what grinder / what does level / what sort of tamp and teh list goes on.

    Go and do the Sunbeam training, watch the dvd and do some reading ....

  7. #7
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Hi AM

    On the DVD (which I have watched... twice - read the manual once) it says when you do your backflush (with water only) the guage should go into the red zone!
    It did this the first time (which was about 2oclock on the dial) - the second time it went only to about 10 oclock.

    Still to work out "the sweet spot" but it definately is in the high end of the "dark brown" zone on the guage.

    Thanks for your help mate.

    chilli

  8. #8
    A_M
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    It will depend on the basket and the rubber blind that your using..

    A single Double floor with no coffee, will give you the sweet spot = Aprox 9 Bar on teh gauge and it can be any where as teh gauge is just an indicator for YOU. Not a reference for others.

    If you use the rubber in this and a Sunbeam Tablet then it is possible to get into teh red etc when teh tab is whole and blocking the pin hole.

    There are other ways including backflush powder but one needs to take care.

    I use 1/4 backflush powder and mix a bit of water and this is in a Single basket with a double floor. When it starts off etc it can get up high, but as teh solution dissolves and moves it should be at teh sweet spot.

    Thus I then know my system is clean and OK...

    If you do things differently (Manual is not 100% correct. They forget to tell you to take ot the filter if you go and descale.. One example) or change certain factors... OR make assumptions any values or info you give can mislead myself and others.

    Enjoy the road as it is bumpy ;D



  9. #9
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Hi AM

    Well finally did the "sweet spot" test... results as follows. Could you please use your wisdom on my findings: (?)

    Results using double floor basket - double cup. Water only (no beans)

    30sec (manual) on stopwatch resulted in 88ml at 10.30 oclock. (on the gauge)

    1 cup auto - took 16 sec and resulted in 40ml at 10.30 oclock. (on the gauge)

    2 cup auto - took 24 sec and resulted in 65ml at 10.30 oclock. (on the gauge)


    So it would seem my "sweet spot" is 10.30 oclock on the gauge?

    But all the shots I have been pouring have been up around 1 oclock??

    Any reading of these findings much appreciated...* 8-)


  10. #10
    A_M
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Quote Originally Posted by 252E2F2A2A2F252732372A22460 link=1265461286/8#8 date=1301565253
    Hi AM

    Well finally did the "sweet spot" test... results as follows. Could you please use your wisdom on my findings: (?)

    Results using double floor basket - double cup. Water only (no beans)

    30sec (manual) on stopwatch resulted in 88ml at 10.30 oclock. (on the gauge)

    1 cup auto - took 16 sec and resulted in 40ml at 10.30 oclock. (on the gauge)

    2 cup auto - took 24 sec and resulted in 65ml at 10.30 oclock. (on the gauge)


    So it would seem my "sweet spot" is 10.30 oclock on the gauge?

    But all the shots I have been pouring have been up around 1 oclock??

    Any reading of these findings much appreciated...* 8-)
    Remember you can program the buttons, but that is about right - It is a guide* ;)

    Yes it would appear that about 10:30* / 11 may be you sweet spot ie. Aprox 8.75 to 9.5 bar....* ( Note to be correct you would use the single basket with the single shot as less water to fill before being under pressure)

    Also a good cross check as regardless of the pour, the gauge should be about the same...*


    Note: When one has coffee in the basket it does change things...* Thus water is just a guide and to set your OWN bench mark.* Then later you can repeat and you will know if things have changed.* But usualy they are constant.* This then points back at YOU and THE method* ;)

    1: I only ever used double basket or other 58mm baskets with a standard floor. Lots of holes.

    This then also becomes a constant* ;D

    That then leaves:

    A: YOU* ;)
    B: Beans
    C: Grind
    D: Dose Level
    E: Tamp

    About now you will see that there are lots of variables and even trying to keep Tamp / Beans / Grind as a constant becomes an issue as each has other factors.* i.e. How consistent is your grinder..* Do you dump the first few grams as they are stale and have been sitting in the grinder over night or between shots ?

    Opps... Another variable to consider.

    Weather and humidity, how long you left the machine to stablise etc etc YEP the list gets longer and not shorter.

    With out being on site and watching, my guess is one or more of the following (and each of their own inconsistencies) as to your shots and whats in the cup.

    A: YOU* ;)
    B: Beans - Variable
    C: Grind - Variable
    D: Dose Level -* 5 cent piece test (CS Search)
    E: Tamp -* Variable

    Now its been posted before, but I think on Home Barista or elsewhere there is a nice guide as to Tamp Vs Grind as this along with Dose will ahve an impact on not only is in the cup but also what back pressure your causing etc.

    Overdosing, Over tamping with the right bean and grind, CAN give an OK shot but will develop higher back* pressure ( Remember no OPV valve in the EM6910 - so to speak)

    It is a fine balance between A to E and that is what makes a good person behind the Group.* But until you master it and understand that YOU are the biggest Factor / Cause, one can never resolve a great shot and do it consistently.

    Hell I am still trying and my wife puts more down the sink, than she has ever before. Must be her, can not be me or the machine or the 101 diferent roasts I keep playing with.* Opps, that means the Grinder / Dose and Tamp all have to change* ;D :D ;) :D ;D

    PS. If ya in Brisbane and want some guidance on the weekend... PM me as I may have some time free....

  11. #11
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Thanks heaps for the reply AM
    Will try again with the single floor single shot basket and compare.

    Having fun playing and learning and great advice like yours in invaluable. Have booked my free Sunbeam course so hopefully will take something more away from that.

    Definately can say that 9/10 times I am making a much better flat white (well its more a latte!!) than my regular coffee haunts of old. Zarrafas tastes like bitter sweet memories of the past now!

    cheers once again and will upload new data ASAP.


  12. #12
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Once you get it happening its very easy to out do 99 % of all coffee shops, even the very well known ones. You will also really start to resent paying for rubbish coffee when you are away from your machine. The look on friends faces as the take their first sip will have you looking for potential coffee shop locations as you realise that you can make better coffee on a $ 600 machine than those with a $ 16 000 machine ;D

  13. #13
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    too true derrilex... too true!

  14. #14
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Also agree derrilex - I have a lawyer friend from Bris who nearly fell over when he had a coffee I made him and was pissed that he was paying $4 plus for bilge water in a very classy coffee establishment in the city!

    Also agree that once you get a feel for it and an understanding of how the many variables affect the taste (and how the variables affect each other!) things get much easier. Having said that it can take a while for things to settle down. Ive had an EM6910 for just over a year (after a year on a cheaper machine) and things were going great - very consistent nice shots, adjustments to weather, new roasts etc all pretty easy. Then the machine died and now have new replacement. Am working quite hard (compared with before) to get to know the new beast, but know that with a careful, methodical approach and practice, things will settle down and Ill be able to stagger out half awake in the morning and churn out a couple of really nice flat whites that make a great start to the day for my wife and I! As AM says, enjoy the journey...

  15. #15
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    A group co -op coffee house, owned and run by 6910 owners, using only 6910s - with AM as on site service rep and tech guru. Stop laughing, it could fly ;D

  16. #16
    brett230873
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Quote Originally Posted by 7D7C6B6B70757C61190 link=1265461286/14#14 date=1301993605
    A group co -op coffee house, owned and run by 6910 owners, using only 6910s - with AM as on site service rep and tech guru. Stop laughing, it could fly* ;D
    Yeah, and when they all fall over at once he could do the dance of the seven veils to keep the punters from leaving and give yall time to boil a kettle. Only thing is his $/hour... Might be cheaper to buy a couple of Synessos and be done with it! ;D

  17. #17
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Quote Originally Posted by 31213627276160636B6460530 link=1265461286/15#15 date=1302010622
    Reply #15 - Yesterday at 11:37pm Mark & Quote Quote
    derrilex wrote Yesterday at 6:53pm:
    A group co -op coffee house, owned and run by 6910 owners, using only 6910s - with AM as on site service rep and tech guru. Stop laughing, it could fly Grin


    Yeah, and when they all fall over at once

    Oh yee of little faith

  18. #18
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    OK. So I finally got to go to the Sunbeam course offered with my machine (6910) and was honestly hoping for a bit more! I really wanted some answers on the maintenance side of things as I really think my coffees are turning out great as is.
    But after being there I am starting to wonder if I have a problem with my machine as I mentioned above? Although I am making great coffee I think after seeing the machines at the course that I am not reaching full pressure!
    I say this as the first time I backflushed my machine (with water) the pressure gauge went into the "red zone", the machine sound went high pitched and silent, followed by the "sneezing" gush sound. Subsequent backflushes have only ever since resulted in a needle position of 12 oclock at the most!
    After watching them "clean up" at the Sunbeam school - all the machines seemed to go right up into the "red zone" and went into high pitched and silent noise followed by the good water release.
    Another thing that makes me think I dont have full pressure is I am using beans roasted about 5 days (following poasters recomonded timezone) and I am always grinding at about "14" on my grinder dial (Sunbeam EM0480) anything less results in my 6910 overextracting to the point that it cannot even get hardly any liquid out!
    Now I know beans are different - but at the course all the machines were set at about the "7" zone and able to pull good shots.

    I know yes I can pull great shots in the right zone on mine, but does this seem excessively course (the grind)? And why can I not get a good backflush (well I got 1).
    Could it be that my (supplied rubber) blind filter is not sealing properly (and maybe a steel blind filter would be better) or maybe is my machine running low pressure?

    Any help much appreciated...

  19. #19
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    Re: Sunbeam EM6910 backflush

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A71707575707A786D68757D190 link=1265461286/17#17 date=1303123322
    I know yes I can pull great shots in the right zone on mine, but does this seem excessively course (the grind)?

    Ignore the numbers, they are irrelevant as each grinder is different. If youre pulling great shots, I dont see the need to change it.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A71707575707A786D68757D190 link=1265461286/17#17 date=1303123322
    Could it be that my (supplied rubber) blind filter is not sealing properly
    I struggle with this as well. Sometimes just giving it a quick dry wipe (both the disc and basket) helps. Other times, nothing seems to work, so Ill leave it to another day.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A71707575707A786D68757D190 link=1265461286/17#17 date=1303123322
    and maybe a steel blind filter would be better)
    I read somewhere that the EM6910 is not designed to handle a steel blind filter. So be VERY WARY.



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