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Thread: VBM Super - particulars

  1. #1
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    VBM Super - particulars

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    OK, ive been experimenting with "The Beast" VBM Super every day now for the last few months or so, and am ready to ask for specifics.

    Brew pressure: whats the general variance between the gauge and the group head?

    Where do I get detailed diagrams about the inner workings of my machine?

    Brew temp: how much of a flush is a flush, after how long? I tend to run two double shots consecutively, then steam the milk for both, but the first shot loses half its crema in the process. I know I definitely dont like coffee extracted with lower temps, but dont know how to control higher ones reliably. Would sticking a thermometer in the flush water help?

    Has anyone here pidd, was it easy, could a non-lecko do it? I read some material about putting a domestic temp down the shaft of the group head top bolt (excuse my ignorance) but it looked a little too technical for me to attempt. And Id love a digital readout personally.

  2. #2
    Senior Member redzone121's Avatar
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    http://www.espressomyespresso.com/

    Click on this link and then VBM review. There a couple of exhaustive links on the review page too.
    As a bonus Randy is also a member of CS

    Enjoy

    Chris

    ps: attached the digital temp probe myself, that means anyone can !

  3. #3
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    Intelli dont stress over installing the digi thermometer, i can give you a hand if at first you dont think you can manage and besides i was thinking of getting one also so we can use your VBM as the guinea pig :o ;D
    im sure i can find a screwdriver to hammer into that weird looking screw and undo it ;)
    the grouphead looks pretty solid on them :)

    Darren

  4. #4
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    Howdy. Firstly, dont PID a HX like this, the pressure stat does a bang up job of regulating boiler temp/pressure. a PID would just slow response time. ITs a complex system of thermosyphons and huge chunks of brass that have your brew water coming out the temp you want it, not just the boiler temperature.

    Second, Ive smacked a digi thermometer into that funny looking bolt in the grouphead ;) Not at all hard to do, but TBH probably wasnt worth the $100+ I paid for custom fitting needed to install it.

    For starters it doesnt show the actual brew temp, just the temp of the water a little way back in the brew path, which does change significantly between there and the coffee. It is useful though, for example sometimes the thermosyphone stalls and I come in to see the grouphead sitting at under 80C (normally sits at about 97C). A quick flush to get it started again and 10-20min later and its back where it should be. Is a PITA, but its either that I being befuddled as to why all my shots are coming out sour. Its also handy for consistenty purposes. For example, If I flush till the digi reads a specific value, then pull. I know everytime the shot temp/profile will be pretty similar (though I dont know the actual temperature at the puck) and so can use it to make precise adjustments to my flush.

    Lastly, My owning it for the last 8 months or so has lead me to find that it takes about 100-150ml (Ill have to confirm this figure later, but I think its about there, and it no doubt depends on how youve set your pressurestat anyway) till boiliing water is flushed through, from then you can pull there and then for a shot on the hot side of things (but still not burning hot), or flush an extra shot or two to get closer to the normal 94C pull.

    If your doing multiple shots, you dont need to flush between, but a short flush to rinse the screen is fine.

    If you do have a really bad grind set or do something wrong and feel compelled to do a blind PF wiggle, or scrub all the coffee from the screen and grouphead with the pump running, this will bring the group temp down futher than you want and youll need to wait 10-20min for recovery.

  5. #5
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    Thanks guys - useful stuff.

    What do you think of a circuit breaker tripping mid-shot? (Yesterdays event.) I tried running another shot and by chance noticed the steam gauge up at 2 BAR! I quickly released the steam valve. Today all seems well.

    How? Why?

  6. #6
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    I have had my timer go off twice this week whilst in the middle of a shot; just flicked the switch back to get the power working (didnt turn the machine off) and experienced no issues.
    I will however be re-setting my timer over the weekend....

  7. #7
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    Quote Originally Posted by Intellidepth link=1222066163/0#4 date=1222391528
    Thanks guys - useful stuff.

    What do you think of a circuit breaker tripping mid-shot? (Yesterdays event.) I tried running another shot and by chance noticed the steam gauge up at 2 BAR! I quickly released the steam valve. Today all seems well.

    How? Why?
    Perhaps the power outlet that your VBM is connected to is also shared with the same circuit as some appliances in your kitchen, such as the fridge, etc... Did the breaker trip on overload or was it the safety switch (RCD Device)? This will give you some idea of what might be happening... :)

    Dont know about the 2 Bar incident with the boiler/pressurestat. Might be worth contacting your vendor about that occurrence. :-?

    Cheers,
    Mal.

  8. #8
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    First time weve ever tripped a breaker in nearly 3 years in this house, so combined with the 2 bar incident straight afterward I assumed it might have been the VBM. Ill contact the vendor.

  9. #9
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    Re: VBM Super - particulars

    yeah the 2 bar thing is interesting... Ive tripped my breaker heaps. My whole kitchen and dining and living room is one one circuit (Except stove) for some silly reason. Out of my high power appliances - the fridge can be on, the espresso machine, then either one electric heater, the microwave, or the electric wok. Switch on more than one of them and it trips. never hurt anything yet

    your 2 bar thing certainly seems strange...have you called your supplier?



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