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Soggy wet puck that's hard to knock out?

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  • Soggy wet puck that's hard to knock out?

    Hey fellow CS,
    I have been using my new Diadema Jnr semi auto machine now for a few months, and I'm still getting the hang of it.

    I recently did a barista course and was able to pull a good shot on their commercial machine 2 x 30ml in 30 secs with a fairly firm dryish puck.

    On my machine at home the extraction is still 60ml in 30 secs but its not as good. I cant get that "drippy" start and the flow seems a little more watery. but the biggest difference is when I remove the PF the top of the puck is really wet (almost soggy) and is hard to knock out...

    any ideas what is causing a very wet puck?

    thanks.

  • #2
    Under dose or too coarse ?

    Comment


    • #3
      Try a lighter tamp and adjust the grind to compensate.

      I find that if I tamp too hard (and therefore use a coarser grind) I get a soggy puck and slight doughtnutting (small dead spot in the centre of the basket).

      Comment


      • #4
        Tips for getting a base-line.


        1 Use the same dose the same each time.
        (overfill the basket and level flush with the top of the basket)

        2. Tamp consistent.
        (tamp as hard as you can, it will be more repeatable with less variation shot to shot)

        3. Adjust the grind as your ONLY variable
        (courser for a faster pour, finer for a slower pour).

        If you dose and tamp on a really fine grind and "choke" the pour so you only get a few drips you can then make adjustments to the grind to speed-up the pour until you are happy.

        I suspect you are introducing too many different variables to your routine, dose and tamp the same every time then adjust the grind to suit is the quickest and easiest way to get a good shot. You can later get more creative with under and over doses, lighter tamp etc when you understand your equipment and it's quirks better.

        Comment


        • #5
          Sounds like his pours are alright the only issue is a soggy puck?

          Comment


          • #6
            ...and the soggy puck could also be caused by too fine a grind (which is the inverse of what you said) or too coarse or too much water pressure or.... you get the idea!

            This is one of the gotchas with remote diagnosis without enough information or tactile "feel".

            I read the question as "I don't really understand what I'm doing yet" and ergo a baseline is needed first.

            Comment


            • #7
              True enough. FWIW I wasn't saying that a finer grind results in a drier puck; just that in my experience the combination of lighter tamp and correct grind had resulted in that.

              Comment


              • #8
                How does it taste? (Serious question).

                How much coffee in grams are you putting in to the basket and how much does the resulting double or single espresso weigh?
                How long did it take to pour?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Andy View Post
                  ...and the soggy puck could also be caused by too fine a grind (which is the inverse of what you said) or too coarse or too much water pressure or.... you get the idea!

                  This is one of the gotchas with remote diagnosis without enough information or tactile "feel".

                  I read the question as "I don't really understand what I'm doing yet" and ergo a baseline is needed first.
                  Thanks Andy. Yes I am pretty much a beginner so having a baseline is helpful.

                  What other information should I be posting?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dragunov21 View Post
                    True enough. FWIW I wasn't saying that a finer grind results in a drier puck; just that in my experience the combination of lighter tamp and correct grind had resulted in that.
                    Thanks Dragunov, I will try that and see what happens.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by EspressoSchool View Post
                      How does it taste? (Serious question).

                      How much coffee in grams are you putting in to the basket and how much does the resulting double or single espresso weigh?
                      How long did it take to pour?
                      hi, thanks for the reply.

                      To answer your questions, the taste is ok but I know it could be and has been better.

                      the dose method I use is fill the chamber to a mound then one knock down on the forks of the grinder, then I use a flat knife to scrape off the coffee grinds level. Then I tamp. I do not weigh.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by 13bob View Post
                        I do not weigh.
                        Point scales are five bucks on eBay. If you're trying to diagnose shots as a home user then there's no reason not to weigh.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Dragunov21 View Post
                          Point scales are five bucks on eBay. If you're trying to diagnose shots as a home user then there's no reason not to weigh.
                          Ok, what weight should I be aiming for?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Andy View Post
                            ...or too coarse or too much water pressure or....
                            Andy, my gauge needle always sits just over 1 bar when fully warmed up.... Is that too high?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The golden mean as I understand it is 30mls from 30secs from a double baskets (I assume you're using a double / triple basket coz if not there's your problem right there!

                              Try fining you grind to slow your extraction down

                              Also are you purging your machine after each extraction?

                              It's good practise to put your empty handle back in the group head after the extraction, place a cup underneath, and run some water through it whilst giggling your handle back and forth to add / break tension

                              This is more of a regular maintenance thing, as opposed to shot quality, but if you're not doing it and back washing with a blind filter once per month, you'll be surprised how much gunk gets stuck in there - and over time this will definitely impact on shot quality ...

                              Comment

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