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Thread: Dirty group head

  1. #1
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    Dirty group head

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Ive been using the 6910 (my first espresso machine) for just under a week now and have a real noob question.

    The machine works well and I cant believe how straightforward it is (with a little bit of trial and error) to pull really nice shots. One thing puzzles me, though - I cant seem to get and keep the inside of the group head clean. I purge a little extra water after removing the group handle every time I use it and wipe the shower screen down.

    However, old grounds keep coming out of it and I have no idea where they come from. The shower screen looks clean and shiny from underneath but running a cloth around it always brings up more.

    Is this just the way these things work and I should ignore it, or am I doing something wrong? There seems to be no issue with the seal of the group handle, so Im a bit hesitant about taking it all apart.

    Cheers
    Steffen.

  2. #2
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    Re: Dirty group head

    The problem is that you have grounds accumulating up and around the gasket.

    You could either:

    a) purchae a group head cleaning brush and just gently scrub the gasket after each session

    b) grab a damp cloth, bunch up a corner and insert it into the gap. Wipe around the gasket making sure to keep your hands off the shower screen (its hot!)

    I personally have never bought a group head brush, so I just bunch up a damp cloth

  3. #3
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Dirty group head

    I always poked a bit of cloth up there on the 6910 using the handle of a teaspoon and ran it around.

  4. #4
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    Re: Dirty group head

    Yes, Ive done the cloth on a teaspoon handle thing a few times now, and the yield of old grinds is slowly getting lower :)

    My question is though, is this normal? Do grinds usually get up and all over the inside of the group head or would this have been the result of some particular operator error?

    Cheers
    Steffen.

  5. #5
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    Re: Dirty group head

    Generally I find SOME accumulation of grinds after every shot I pull, though its generally at its worst if Ive happened to accidentally overdose.

    Are you overdosing?

  6. #6
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    Re: Dirty group head

    Quote Originally Posted by 606B73796564666F657D0A0 link=1303620429/4#4 date=1303644025
    Are you overdosing?
    Good question. How can I tell? The manual said the level after tamping has to be exactly 3mm below the rim of the basket. I havent measured it but Im pretty sure Im close there. What Im not sure about is my tamping pressure. Does putting in a little too much and compensating by tamping harder count as overdosing?

    Also, could you still get a good looking extraction (as shown on the DVD) despite dosing or tamping improperly?

    Cheers
    Steffen.

  7. #7
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    Re: Dirty group head

    Quote Originally Posted by 4E69787B7B78731D0 link=1303620429/5#5 date=1303647967
    How can I tell?
    Do you feel any resistance when youre locking in the group handle?

    Try this:
    - Prepare to pull a shot as you would normally,
    - Lock the group handle into the head, but dont start to brew.
    - Remove the handle, and check the top of the puck.
    If you can see quite a heavy indentation, then youre probably overdosing.

    Quote Originally Posted by 4E69787B7B78731D0 link=1303620429/5#5 date=1303647967
    exactly 3mm below the rim of the basket
    IMO 3mm doesnt given enough space when locking the handle in, and will speed up the wear on the collar.

    Quote Originally Posted by 4E69787B7B78731D0 link=1303620429/5#5 date=1303647967
    Does putting in a little too much and compensating by tamping harder count as overdosing?
    This will give you quite inconsistent results (unless youre ALWAYS putting in a little too much, and tamping extra hard),
    as though the extra hard tamp may not do TOO much to slow the pour rate, the extra ground coffee will.

    Quote Originally Posted by 4E69787B7B78731D0 link=1303620429/5#5 date=1303647967
    Also, could you still get a good looking extraction (as shown on the DVD) despite dosing or tamping improperly?
    The extractions in the DVD seemed to me to be inconsistent as well, with the flow rate and blonding times differing.
    Using fresh beans would give the extraction the viscosity as appears in the DVD.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Rusty's Avatar
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    Re: Dirty group head

    After each shot I do a wriggle of the handle in the group head after pressing the brew button.

    At the end of each day I do a water only backflush by inserting the rubber disk and pressing the brew button.* I repeat this for five goes.* It gets the muck out* :)



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