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Thread: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

  1. #1
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    New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Just bought a new silvia/ rocky combo from cosmorex on Thursday. Great service, great CS price - thanks Attilio. :)


    Anyway, I am reasonably familiar with the basics of the machine but I was wanting to get peoples thoughts on temperature surfing. I know that a PID is the easiest way to achieve temp stability but am interested to see how good I can get just using surfing.

    A quick google suggests the "reverse temperature surfing" method is popular - i.e. wait until light goes off and then wait 1 and a half minutes, pull shot.

    Do people have any modifications to this routine? E.g. some recommend turning steam switch on for 10 seconds, 5 seconds into the brew. This sounds like a good way to maintain the temperature throughout the shot, but Im a bit worried that this might make it too hot.

    Id appreciate any feedback from CSers on their preferred technique.....

  2. #2
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Ive been using *the reverse temp surfing method for over 12 months, I *usually only make a double at a time so I find it quite manageable but backing up with extra pours while trying to juggle temp surfing is different story. When I was using the Rocky I was waiting 1.30 after the light went out, since going to the SJ I have had to extend that time. So try 1.30 to 1.40 to start with, try a longer time for a colder shot and a shorter time for a hotter shot and let your taste decide which works best for you.

  3. #3
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Before I PIDed my machine, I used to pull the shot just as the boiler light went out.

    Heres a graph I got from somewhere, to help you see the temp after certain waiting times. It is for the newer Silvia (which has been in production for a few years now). Note how steep the graph is in the heating cycle - you have to be pretty accurate with your timing.

    You can see that the boiler cycles off when the boiler temp is 228F (109C) - which is the temp everyone seems to have their PID set at. Waiting for a set time after the light goes out will result in pulling the shot at a temp too hot. From memory the pulling the shot 1 min after was for the older model.


  4. #4
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Two other ways that worked for me, particularly in the morning when I didnt have time to be standing in the kitchen staring at Silvia and her timer:

    1: Run water through the steam arm or group until the boiler light comes on. Wait 40 seconds and pull your shot. The waiting time can vary between Silvias, 35 - 45 seconds seems to be the go.

    2: If the light is already on, or the toaster distracts you at the 35 second mark, wait until the boiler light goes out, run water through the group head until it stops spitting and hissing, this is now a good temperature to pull your shot. You get a good feel for how much water to run out with practice.

    Reverse temp surfing is a more accurate way, and is great if you make one coffee once or twice a day. For the dedicated caffeine addict or the time poor these two alternatives will give reasonable consistency with a lot less stress. ;)

  5. #5
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Quote Originally Posted by fleery link=1226694955/0#2 date=1226986092
    ...You can see that the boiler cycles off when the boiler temp is 228F (109C) - which is the temp everyone seems to have their PID set at. Waiting for a set time after the light goes out will result in pulling the shot at a temp too hot....
    There is another piece to this puzzle that is not so obvious.

    The group temperature on a machine with a stock thermostat generally will run several degrees cooler than a machine with a PID set at 109C. *As a result, pulling a shot at precisely 109C on a stock machine will yield a lower brew temperature than from a machine with PID set at 109C. *The difference being the cooler group on the stock machine.

    A shot pulled near the top of the temp cycle on a stock machine should be pretty close to correct once the cooling effects of the group are considered.

    Jim


  6. #6
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    A shot pulled near the top of the temp cycle on a stock machine should be pretty close to correct once the cooling effects of the group are considered.
    Going by the above graph that would make it about 60 seconds after the light goes out, but that graph is for 110V I expect our higher voltage will result in a hotter element with more overshoot after the thermostat switches off.

  7. #7
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Viviane link=1226694955/0#3 date=1227274017
    wait until the boiler light goes out, run water through the group head until it stops spitting and hissing, this is now a good temperature to pull your shot. You get a good feel for how much water to run out with practice.
    Yup I agree with this.....Rather than via the group, I used to run the water via the steam wand [I prefered this caus the pf could be loaded and in place whilst you do it]

    I was a diligent Reverse Temp surfer for some time, but still found it a bit hit and miss.
    Its consistancy is very dependent on the starting conditions, eg after steaming you need to flush the boiler to cool it back down into the brew heating cycle and then wait 10min or so for it to stabilse [ie for the brass to lose excess heat from the steaming]

    By all means try everything and stick with what works best for you.
    I reckon the cooling flush as described by Viviane is the simplest and easiest method.

  8. #8
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Wow, many thanks for the input everybody. It sounds like there are a lot of variables that Im not factoring in.

    Im certainly not in any hurry when I make my one cup of coffee a day, so am happy to wait using the reverse temperature surfing technique. HOwever, it seems as if it is more complicated than simply waiting 1 minute 30 or whatever.

    I will try the "wait until the light goes out, run water through until it stops spitting and steaming, and then pull shot" and see how that goes...

    Also, do people have opinions on whether it is worth turning steam switch on 5 seconds into the shot (for 10 seconds) to maintain the temp throughout the shot?

  9. #9
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    Re: New Silvia/Rocky - temp surfing?

    Quote Originally Posted by hughwebb link=1226694955/0#7 date=1227305705
    Also, do people have opinions on whether it is worth turning steam switch on 5 seconds into the shot (for 10 seconds) to maintain the temp throughout the shot?
    I dont think that is needed. From the graphs that Ive seen, the temp (at the puck) is fairly flat during a shot. And a graph Ive seen with the steam switch on showed the temp at the puck increasing during the shot.



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