Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

    Hi all
    Ive recently bought an espresso machine - a Sunbeam EM3600 - and Im struggling to get it right!! Firstly, the crema seems to get a head on it like a badly poured beer. Ive referred to the manual and the DVD that came with it but it just doesnt seem right somehow. Tastes great, mind you, but just seems to be bubbly and not at all like the photos. Secondly, I cannot get the milk right for the life of me. It is getting way too hot with little frothing or extension. In other words a latte seems more like a flat white. Again, Im using the instructions as a guide.
    For what its worth, I was able to get it right with my old machine (a Morphy Richards Italiano model) and I have had training using a commercial machine. any ideas?
    Kes
    PS Im aware from reading some other posts that I may cop some criticism for having a Sunbeam rather than a $1500 Gaggia. Dont bother - Ive got what fits in the family budget (I wouldnt get away with taking the kids out of school to support my habit!!) and my previous budget-priced machine was excellent.

  • #2
    Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

    Kes,

    Are you using a grinder? and if so, what grinder are you using?

    What Beans are you using?

    $1500 Gaggia?? Never seen that posted here anywhere

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

      MarcS - no, I dont use a grinder. I buy ground coffee. Is there one that you recommend? As for the Gaggia comment, I exaggerated a tad but I saw a post where someone had a cheaper machine and half of the replies were suggesting that a new machine should be purchased. I probably got defensive in advance!!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

        Kes,

        Firstly, preground will ALWAYS give you inferiour results. If youve searched around here long enough that much is very clear!

        Principles for a good quality coffee is this:

        * "Freshly roasted" Coffee Beans and within 4 weeks from being roasted (Some say 3 weeks, but it can be stretched to 4 IMHO). Nothing on a supermarket shelf with meet that criteria.
        * Ground on demand using at least a Sunbeam EM0450 grinder (Ive used a Delonghi KG100 on this machine and it wasnt fine enough). Anything less will be disappointing - in other words, grind the coffee as you need it.
        * Having used a EM3600, you really need to updose - jam as much coffee in the basket as you can.

        Technique can then be fine tuned after the above criteria is met.
        I understand the budget constraint - we all have them at different degrees - however, we cant alter the science of creating a fantastic coffee without "key" essentials in the process.

        I hope this is of some help you.

        IF a grinder is out of the question, then at least find a local roaster who can grind for you and buy small amounts at a time. This is the only work around in regards to a grinder. My suggestion, keep an eye in the For Sale section and youll find some bargins from time to time.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

          MarcS
          This sounds like good advice and Ill look into the acquisition of a grinder. When you say I need to overstock the basket, to what extent? I use strictly 7 grams which is pretty much a one scoop. When tamped, sits a couple of mm below the lip. Do you think I should put in justa fractuion more?

          In the meantime, I will get some more finely ground coffee.
          Thanksagain.
          Kes

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

            Kes,

            Dose so its tamped and level with the basket rim... forget the 7gram rule... just fill the basket until its full, tamp, and fill again. You need a tamped full basket level with the rim (or just below)

            Marc

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

              Thanks Marc - Ill have a go tonight. I dont expect to be able to get to sleep!
              Kes

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                gday kes

                ive just got the same unit few days ago, well mines the red one it goes faster

                as for filling the baskets i fill 1mm below the top & pound it in real tight getting a better tamper will make a big improvment.

                funny enough with the frothing i got it right after making my third cup what i do is cause it to bubble a bit in the beginning then just keep the end of the pipe just below the milk line as it makes a loud hissing sound since then ive allmost mastered it now from making a few cups, yer i followed the dvd to but its a bit hard to expect the same results when the machine hes using is $600 unit & not the cheap one we have but it does get better the more u use it

                good luck m8 happy brewing..

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                  Thanks Kringle (and Marc if youre reading)
                  I bought some ground coffee last night that was ground for espresso machines. A nice arabica Freetrade called Scarborough. I put in a scoop and a bit and tamped well. Beautiful result. As for frothing, I ended up following advice similar to yours (didnt see it until this morning). The milk stretched really well but wasnt warm enough.
                  Keep posting - we can compare notes!
                  Kes

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                    Im reading :-)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                      Hi Kes - welcome to the site. I just had a quick look at the Sunbeam site and I am pretty confident that your machine uses dual wall (crema enhancing) baskets (like my old Sunbeam Ristretto). What that means is that instead of the hot water passing straight through the tamped coffee grounds and out a couple of hundred small holes in the bottom of the basket, it instead percolates around the coffee and then out a couple of small holes before going into the two big holes where you see the coffee exiting from...alright this means that you will see crema, but it will be nothing like the crema that you will get from a higher end machine with proper commercial style baskets. So you can either try to get single walled baskets (ie commercial style) from somewhere or just persevere knowing that you will not get the same product as you would from say the Sunbeam EM6910 for example (or Gaggia Classic, or Rancilio Silvia - or for that matter a $10k commercial machine).

                      But dont dispair - Marc has given you the best advise you could hear....if you use fresh coffee and grind your own beans you will get a much better product that what you have got so far. You might get away with a KG100 but really for the price you would be better getting the upper end Sunbeam grinder. The beans and grinder are a far more important part of the coffee making equation than the machine!

                      Ok...you might want to also roast your own beans at home. It can be done in a pop corn maker or bread maker with a heat gun (Corretto) so dont worry about expensive home roasting machines. You will not believe how good the result is even without much science going into things initially.

                      Overall you will always be limited by your machine, but I am confident that you will see a massive improvement by following the above.

                      As for milk texturing - practice, practice, practice No one gets it right straight away. Try practicing with water first to get a swirl going. I suggest you search the Milk Froth and Bubbles part of this board and read the suggestions as to how to go about it...its a very good source.

                      Let us know how you go..

                      Cheers
                      Oz

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                        Thanks Oz. Ill keep practising and try the advice. A grinder is on my horizon!
                        Kes

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                          No worries Kez - keep posting and reading on this site and you will get well and truly hooked

                          Cheers

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                            Thats good advise Oz ;-)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Getting a Sunbeam EM3600 right

                              Agreed!

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X