EM6910- need help with steaming!!
First post for me!
Hi all, recently purchased a second hand, hardly used, EM6910. In seemingly great condition and after a bit of fiddling I am, now pouring consistently great shots and am very happy. Steaming on the other hand has not been so successful- after about two weeks of trying my results are still dismal. I'm getting bubbly foam that will not infuse with my milk and not anything close to microform. I am currently running default settings for my steam wand. Can anyone help me out? I'm willing to try anything!!
p.s I don't think it is a technique issue as I work as a barista and produce perfect milk all day (work machine is a 3 group expobar).
Please help ell I am extremely frustrated! Sorry for long post.
Originally Posted by JimmyL
I posted a fair bit about it on
The 6910 is a single nozzle steam wand, so you need a different technique compared to the multi nozzle ones. The 6910 DVD explains it really well*. FWIW, I only know one barista that can get decent sweet microfoam out of a multi nozzle without scalding the milk, and he uses Espro Toroidal jugs exclusively. Getting "normal microfoam" is simple, it is the sweeter bit that is hard with multis. The 6910 is the other way around (as you have noticed) - when you eventually get it right, it is usually also in the sweet zone.
Also, if the wand is partially blocked, all bets are off until you clean it out. I have seen some shockers.
* DVD - I can send you one for the cost of postage if you do not have it. Saves a lot of 6910 grief. PM me if needed.
Have a go playing around with the steam settings. I found microfoam comes a lot easier with water and temp set to MAX. Good luck!!
Thanks for replying! Sorry for the slow response I have been pretty flat out lately! Have had a few goes since posting this and slowly but surely I am getting better. I think I'll just put this down to lack of practice on my machine and simply not being used to it! I also checked and cleaned my steam nozzle - cheers for the tips mate you were very helpful!
That is the plan now mate! Do you have it on drier or wetter settings? Thanks for replying.
Originally Posted by JimmyL
You are welcome.
I would suggest you leave the 6910 on default settings and hone your technique first. Then (of course) feel free to tinker away at will. As I also set up a lot of friends and cafe machines (all types), I tend to only move settings if the standard setup does not work - probably due more to KISS than anything else. Some of the more exotic "milks" some places use (from plants or whatever) often fail at non-standard settings - especially if you crank the temp up.
Paul Bassett must have spent a lot of hours sorting out the 6900 steaming setup to end up at the 6910. FWIW, I can get sweet microfoam out of any of the dozen or so 6910s I have encountered at the standard settings using any type of milk (almond, rice, oat, llama, sheep etc, not just cow). It also steams & froths a really good hot choc / cocoa with ease* - something a lot of more expensive machines have problems with. FWIW, using my 7000, it is actually harder to get the extra sweetness compared to either of my 6910s (IMO, the new automatic steaming setup is only useful for newbies to get to ANY microfoam) even after 6 months of ownership. However, using a 7000 it is easier to make a truly brilliant espresso shot... swings & roundabouts.
The main thing is to enjoy your cuppas.
* Just dissolve choc / cocoa in the smallest amount water of water you can get away with. Ideally add the milk after it cools and then stick it in a fridge for half an hour (removes the graininess of not quite dissolved cocoa). Then just froth it like any other straight milk - "just like a chocolate milkshake, only hot" to misquote a well known product. Add whatever floats your boat (marshmallows, Lindt Chocolate flakes, rosewater, vanilla... endless list) and serve it. A friend's daughter coined the term "an ot Chocolate" (just say it) which works to differentiate it.
I have had my 6910 for over 5 years now and have learnt to just skim the top of the milk with the steam wand to get a good microfoam - works for me.