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  • watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

    Im a newie to all this, and only have a basic sunbeam EM3600 so it could both of those factors leading to my problem! Anyway I put the coffee grounds in the double shot basket, tamp it down - the basket is not filled to the top - when I extract the coffee I let it run till it changes colour - when I take out the basket thing the coffee that is left in the basket is still full of water and is all sort of mushy, not a dryish puck that springs back under your finger like i learnt on my coffee appreciation course - what am I doing wrong? I dont have a grinder so have been buying pre - ground coffee from a decent coffee shop that roasts its own also so Im confident in their abilities to grind!

  • #2
    Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

    Hi again annb

    Firstly watery pucks are normally a sign of underdosing (not enough coffee in the basket) and / or the grind is too fine.

    Each machine needs a specific grind size to work properly - there is no "one size fits" all solution. So buying preground is far from ideal - and will be stale 3 minutes after it is ground. You really need a grinder.......

    So things to check -

    when you fill the basket and fit the portafilter - does the shower screen (the small disk with lots of tiny holes just above where you fit the portafilter just touch the coffee grounds when you fit it (if not- put a bit more coffee in till it does.....

    get yourself a grinder (not so important with the "crema enhancing" baskets you have now - but essential for real baskets).

    Im pretty sure the EM3600 doesnt have a three way valve - a device which releases the water from above the puck when you finish extraction - and that also causes wet pucks....

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    • #3
      Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

      annb,

      Try updosing a bit more. If you can lock the portafilter in place with coffee right up to the top, do that.

      Other factors could be grind and/or tamp.

      Did they use your model on the coffee appreciation course?
      If they used their current flagship, the EM6910, it doesnt use pressursed baskets and comes with a half decent SS tamper. It would be a lot easier for them to get the dryish puck.

      As for the pre-ground, youll be fighting a losing battle. Its not about the grinding abilities of the place you buy it from. Coffee is a food. It changes with age. It changes a lot from roasting to + 4 weeks.

      You should also be aware of the often quoted rule of 3s.
      Green beans - best used within 3 years
      Roasted beans - best used within 3 weeks
      Ground coffee - best used within 3 minutes of grinding.

      Enjoy!

      Brett.

      *EDIT* - It looks like JavaB is stalking you and I am stalking JavaB at present. Hes obviously typing faster. ;D

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      • #4
        Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

        Sounds like you are under-dosing to me.

        Youll have to play around until you find a good method/amount to dose for your machine & basket..

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        • #5
          Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

          thanks!!
          not in a position to buy a grinder at the moment unless its one of those crappy blade ones which is probably worse than buying preground?? anyway i know about it not being as good as fresh ground beans but in all honesty im such a novice at the moment i couldnt tell anyway!!
          bought some more coffee today and got them to grind it at 3.5 whatever that is, in the shop they grind on 3 apparantly
          im assuming its the grind or the machine as i dosed the basket right up to the top
          unfortunately on my coffee course thingo they didnt use the same model as ive got and the one that was similar didnt work on the day as according to the barista the coffee was too fresh for a one hole filter basekt
          SO MUCH TO LEARN!!

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          • #6
            Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

            Its a sad state of affairs when fresh coffee is too good.

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            • #7
              Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

              Originally posted by Thundergod link=1172107969/0#5 date=1172385099
              Its a sad state of affairs when fresh coffee is too good.
              Now aint that the truth.....

              But having used pressurised baskets (for a long time) and towards the end of that run discovering fresh roasted coffee - yep, it is far easier to use old, stale coffee in those baskets......(the resultant coffee doesnt taste as good, but extraction works better and the resultant puck is far drier - guess thats what they were "designed" for!)

              annb,

              Just checking the Sunbeam EM3600 and it has crema enhancement listed ..... so if you are using the supplied baskets.... you will probably have problems with fresh coffee grounds- especially if you tamp like you would for a normal basket. Stale grounds produce virtually no crema with a normal basket so the crema enhancement works fine..... but fresh grounds in the crema enhanced basket and you will have enhanced, enhanced crema which cant get through the small hole fast enough... Until I replaced my baskets with normal ones, fresh coffee was a PITA to use - always wet pucks.... but stale coffee (supermarket variety) worked fine....

              So you need normal baskets,,,
              Freshly ground coffee will then work well....
              But to get most out of fresh coffee, you will need a grinder....

              The journey continues!

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              • #8
                Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

                Originally posted by JavaB link=1172107969/0#6 date=1172385682
                So you need normal baskets,,,
                Freshly ground coffee will then work well....
                But to get most out of fresh coffee, you will need a grinder....

                The journey continues!
                So can I get normal baskets for the sunbeam then? sunbeam dont stock them, in fact when i tol the woman what the barista on the course said about using fresh coffee in the basket and it not working said she basically said he was talking out of his a***!!!

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                • #9
                  Re: watery gluggy coffee grounds in the basket

                  Originally posted by annb link=1172107969/0#7 date=1172394452

                  So can I get normal baskets for the sunbeam then? sunbeam dont stock them, in fact when i tol the woman what the barista on the course said about using fresh coffee in the basket and it not working said she basically said he was talking out of his a***!!!
                  Mmmmmm.... I know who Id believe.... Those crema enhancement baskets will work with truly fresh coffee (just)- but its almost impossible to get them to work properly and you will have to do a lot of grind/tamp adjustment to get them to even work passably.

                  They really are designed for stale coffee - which most of the population - except we coffeesnobs - use all the time (and dont even realise it is stale - typical "use by" date over 1 year from packing :-X ----- and roast beans are stale after 3 weeks from roasting)

                  If they are 53mm baskets (and most small machine baskets seem to be) you can try either a saeco service agent or a krups service agent..... they can often supply non pressurised baskets to fit (take your PF with you).

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