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Thread: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

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    Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I thought I would just quickly revive this thread to let everyone know that a few weeks back I purchased a brand new Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica http://i1129.photobucket.com/albums/...e/Newsetup.jpgfrom Cosmorex here in Canberra as they had an interest free deal happening so it was a perfect time for me to take the step into making some really nice coffee at home.

    Now I am a complete novice and booked myself in for a Barista course with Cosmorex last Tuesday and wow wasn’t I doing everything wrong... Plus this resulted in me buying a K3 grinder as well last week. Lots of money spent but only a drop in the ocean in comparison to my other hobby/money pit...

    After some useful tips here and finally putting in the time to get a nice brew, the coffee is now starting to taste a touch on the bitter side and its 3 weeks this coming Saturday since I bought it. To reduce the bitterness just a touch would you suggest I make the grind a little coarser or do I need to run a cleaning solution through it already?

    Machine switched and not used for at least 20 minutes
    Double basket is used most times
    7 seconds of pre-extraction
    25 seconds for entire pour including the 7 from above
    Coffee used is out of a 1kg bag of Cosmorex Premium Special Blend

    Any suggestions would be great.

    Cheers

    RP

    PS: I would really like to thank Harry and Jason at Cosmorex for treating me as such a valued customer. I really couldn’t tell you the last time I have encountered such excellent customer service.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Barry O'Speedwagon's Avatar
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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    RP,
    I suspect youll get some advice from the horses mouth quite soon. Ill stay away from that as Im no professional.* From your post it is clear that you havent yet done a chemical backflush. Have you been backflushing with water at all yet?
    And, yep, the staff out at Cosmorex are great.

    BTW this part of the thread probably should be moved (not much manual coffee brewing going on).

    Cheers
    BOSW.

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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    Backflushing?? Time to start searching for that now, so I can give that a go first before the chemical backflush.

    Apologies if this is in the wrong section, happy for a mod to move this to somewhere more suitable.

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    Senior Member C-man's Avatar
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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    Hows it going now?

    you also might need to season the new grinder

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    Super Moderator Javaphile's Avatar
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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    [movedhere] Brewing Equipment - Manual Coffee Brewing Processes [move by] Javaphile.

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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    Dunno how i missed this one before.....

    Than you for the very kind words and i will pass them on to Harry and Jason.

    DONT GO NEAR the machine with cleaners etc. its too soon as in you probably arent using enough coffee to start backflushing with detergents yet.....

    All you need to do is work on your technique...it will be in there somewhere especially as the coffee you are using is a multi award winning top blend and also the blend of my own choice.

    If you like, next time you come in ask if I am around and I will show you on my cupping machine.

    Hope that helps.

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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    Too late !!

    Unfortunately, Ive put the cleaner through twice since I read your comment, but this was after obtaining advice from Cosmorex.

    Now Im confused...

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    Re: Diadema Junior Plus Semi-Automatica help with bitterness

    Dont be! You will need the detergent soon enough, I simply wouldnt have thought it would be this soon for the kind of volume I imagine you are using.

    Your problem however cant be anywhere else but in "grind / dose / tamp".

    As stated, when next youre in ask for me and if I am around will be happy to demo and advise :)

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    Thanks. I think I'm getting the hang of it now. I'm getting some consistent shots but struggling with beans I use that are not the Cosmorex premium blend, messing around with the grind to get it right just ends up in wasting a lot of coffee, then when I get it right, I'm out of beans... Guess that's what happens when you're a coffee snob in training...

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    Hi all

    Just wondering if anyone might be able to assist me in troubleshooting this issue I'm having...

    Basically, I'm lost as to how a $100 Sunbeam machine is able to produce a much thicker, nicer crema than my Diadema Jr.

    The only difference in my technique for the two machines are that the tamp pressure for the Sunbeam machine is much gentler than the Diadema. The coffee and grind are the same.

    Don't get me wrong, the taste of the coffee from the Diadema is much, much nicer. I was just wondering if there is something noticeable that I'm doing to mess things up.

    Also the very first coffee made from the Diadema in the morning has no crema at all but the taste is ok, The 2nd cup made is much better though. I do wait till the machine has been on for at least a minimum of 15 minutes and this morning I ran a dose through to see if that might improve the crema but it didn't improve.

    This is all a cosmetic problem as the taste is ok in my books. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers

    RP

  11. #11
    TC
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    Hello RP071,

    What you have experienced will be the result of one or more of coffee quality, grinder and your technique.

    Your old machine will likely have had a pressurised basket in the portafilter. Whilst these produce "crema", the do not produce true espresso. I suspect that they would produce crema if tan bark was used instead of coffee! Real espresso machines will not produce good results with poor quality, stale coffee.

    Have a look over this online training dvd and use it as a guide- and to check your technique.

    Good luck!

    Chris

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    G'day RP.

    From what you've written, the problem will be in the grind setting and dose of grinds in the filter.

    Hint....it is most unliklely the grind setting for the Diadema and a $100.00 Sunbean (a "Ristretto" I assume) can be the same.


    Your BFC Diadema Junior machine will produce a crema that rises from the bottom like a guinness, when you get your operational technique right. Did you ever come in? I never got a message if you did....

    HTH

    Attilio
    very firts CS site sposnor

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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    I dont mean to sway from trying to help answer your question (however the two guys above are the best bet it getting some help on what you are asking) but I must say after reading what you have written it sounds like myself sometime ago. On an avaerage of 10 shots I was only getting good crema on about 2-3. I started thinking am I doing something wrong? Worried I started reading for answers. While doing so it somewhat dawned on me that regardless weather or not I was getting a good crema or not, the coffee that i was making i was was still very nice and i was happy with the taste. You have mentioned this in your thread/reply. Looking back now I dont even think about it, I make coffee that I, my wife and my friends like and thats all that matter to me.

    I dont mean at all to take away from what you are asking, just wanted to put that thought out, since after reading what you wrote it sounded like the same questions i was asking sometime ago.

    Chris

  14. #14
    Senior Member Barry O'Speedwagon's Avatar
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    RP. I have a similar machine purchased from Cosmorex a year or so ago, with a K3. The only time I've noticed a lack of crema, or a rapidly dissipating crema has been when I've used some slightly older beans (to finish of the end of a packet etc). You don't say anything about the beans you are using. Are they freshly roasted? It's the simplest thing to fix if this actually the problem

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    Hi all

    Thanks for everyone's replies and thank you Chris for your online DVD, I will certainly have a look at that a few times and hopefully this will help fix some of my issues.

    Hi Attilio, I was in just recently to have the machine looked at as the water spout was leaking and the water alarm wasn't working, which seems to have not been fixed but I'll run a couple of containers through first. I did do a course with Hugh at Cosmorex when I first bought the machine and that definitely helped but I guess I'm fine tuning and getting a little more fussy with presentation.

    Coffeechris, yes the taste is still really nice and everyone that comes over do enjoy a cup or 4...

    Barry, the beans were bought from cosmorex (signature blue, i think) so they shouldn't be that old.

    I'll see how I go with the dvd and give it a few more shots and I'll report back with the results. Good thing is that I can only get better, well I hope so...

    Cheers, RP

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    Any way u can post a picture of you're portafilter with the grinds still in it post shot? keen to see the level and state of the puck post shot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RP071 View Post
    Hi all

    Thanks for everyone's replies...the beans were bought from cosmorex (signature blue)......they shouldn't be that old....Cheers, RP
    Yes I believe that will be a classic understatement......the blend is an award winner and quite fresh when it leaves our roasterie. Our whole business revolves around fresh roasted coffee. As stated previously, any lack of crema will be in the operator technique/grind adjustment. I am in tomorrow from around 10 until 2 if you would like to take advantage of my invitation, and the cupping machine will be ON!

    If you should ever find a problem with a service that we have effected, undoubtedly the best course of action is to call us ASAP. It is the right thing for both yourself and us, & the service is guaranteed. WRT the low water circuit....sometimes a water tank can move around a little and get "hung up" inside the body especially when it has been moved around (like when it is emptied and travels back home after a service). That may stop it from operating properly. Try moving it a little in situ and see if that "fixes" it ! Otherwise, please give us a call.

    HTH
    Attilio
    very first CS site sponsor

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    Thanks Attilio, unfortunately I read this a touch too late to take you up on your offer but I'll probably drop the machine off tomorrow morning as the alarm still isn't working. Thanks for asking Andrew to call me, definitely not something I'm used, customer service wise. It is greatly appreciated.

    Could be a tough couple of days at work now without my morning fix though...

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    Junior Member MEATCLEAVER101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RP071 View Post
    Hi all

    Also the very first coffee made from the Diadema in the morning has no crema at all but the taste is ok, The 2nd cup made is much better though. I do wait till the machine has been on for at least a minimum of 15 minutes and this morning I ran a dose through to see if that might improve the crema but it didn't improve.


    RP
    Hi RP071

    After reading your posts I have one little question .... When you ground your first coffee in the morning did you flush your grinder? When coffee is ground it flattens out/deteriorates its goodness and with most grinders the old coffee stays around the plates/burr's, front spouts & channel. I would recommend purging a small handful of coffee each morning before proceeding to the coffee making steps. When you purge the grinder it removes a lot of the old coffee from around the grinding plates/burr's etc...Thus leaving you with lovely fresh coffee grinds when you proceed with the daily ritual...

    Thank you for your time

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    Quote Originally Posted by AtomicGrog View Post
    Any way u can post a picture of you're portafilter with the grinds still in it post shot? keen to see the level and state of the puck post shot.
    Sorry I keep forgetting to take a photo, but I grind enough coffee so that it is full/flush in the portafilter, then I give it one tap on the bench, then I'll tamp it at a guestimate of 16kgs of force.

    Quote Originally Posted by MEATCLEAVER101 View Post
    Hi RP071

    After reading your posts I have one little question .... When you ground your first coffee in the morning did you flush your grinder? When coffee is ground it flattens out/deteriorates its goodness and with most grinders the old coffee stays around the plates/burr's, front spouts & channel. I would recommend purging a small handful of coffee each morning before proceeding to the coffee making steps. When you purge the grinder it removes a lot of the old coffee from around the grinding plates/burr's etc...Thus leaving you with lovely fresh coffee grinds when you proceed with the daily ritual...

    Thank you for your time
    I'll defintely give this a try, thank you so much for this tip, it's something I've never thought of.

  21. #21
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    Hi,

    Just to add my thoughts to the thread.

    I found the same problem when I first got my new Sylvia.
    I read that it takes about 12 months to learn to drive it, and didn't accept that as it couldn't be that difficult.
    My first coffees were worse than the Sunbeam cheapie.
    Had to go online and look at all the how to videos and fix things I was doing wrong.
    Gradually it got better, but kept finding it wasn't quite right, and then finding I was still getting things wrong.
    Eventually I was happy that the Sylvia was making a much better coffee than the Sunbeam could, but it took about a year rather than 12 months.

    As others have said here, probably the grind is the most important thing. (I think the tamp is probably overrated)
    Best to get the grind fine enough that it just trickels out in a continuous stream (just faster than drip). If it drips out then it it too fine and if it runs out it is too coarse.

    Eventually I found that the Sunbeam grinder was just not good enough. I couldn't get it fine enough without it clogging.
    It seems like, if you try to force it to produce a very fine grind, then you get a lot of powder that cloggs the filter.

    Had to lash out and buy a good grinder and it made so much difference I couldn't believe it.

    I have been using Cosmorex Signature Blend and occasionally finding they loose their punch after a while.
    It seemed to me one day they were fine, then the next I couldn't get any flavour or crema from them. I got some fresh beans and all was well.
    Probably need to try to use them within 3 weeks and be careful how they are stored.

    Good point about the stale coffee in the grinder. They told me this one wouldn't hold any ald grinds, but I find there is still enough in there to be a concern.
    Just leaning the machine over and tapping will get most of it out.



    Good luck

  22. #22
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    G'day RP...

    Probably among the most difficult things to do, is to try and help a fellow CSer troubleshoot their espresso shot technique via the printed word, with a delay added in.

    Having bought your system from one of the most professional outfits in Oz, it really is behoven on you to take up Attilio's offer and make arrangements for you and he to get together with your system (including grinder and the coffee you are using) and sort out your technique issues. I would have given anything to have someone like the guys and gals at Cosmorex Coffee teach me how to use my machinery properly, right from the outset, you are very lucky to have this level of expertise, practically on your doorstep.

    I think the ball is in your court...

    Mal.

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    Hi all

    Things have progressed quite nicely since starting this thread and I'm now experimenting with different types of beans. I'm now adjusting the grind from the start of a new packet of beans to as they age throughout the thir lifespan, 1kg might last 2 weeks or so, shorter if I have quite weekend at home...

    The only issue I have now is the machine's low water alarm has died again, so this looks like a flaw that I'm happy to live with as the thing weighs a ton and with a dodgy back I'm not going to pick it up and put in the cxar to get it fixed any more. Might get it looked at when I pop it in for a service one day/year...

    I'm loving the experimentation with the beans and I still pop in to Cosmorex to get some tips/hints from the staff which have been great.

    Cheers, RP



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