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ECM synchronika simultaneous boiler heating

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  • #16
    Is that a feature of the boilers not being simultaneous, or a design issue with the pump/water level?

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    • #17
      Originally posted by alexcs View Post
      Is that a feature of the boilers not being simultaneous, or a design issue with the pump/water level?
      Probably the latter and possibly due to programming of the PID not working out and giving priority to whatever operation is currently going on. Although I'm always wondering if recovery is going on as quickly as some of the videos I've seen of it online. It seems slower than I anticipated. Knowing that both boilers could recover simultaneously would spare me always wondering which boiler was coming back up to temperature and second guessing.

      A 240V power point can handle 2400 watts (10A x 240v = 2400watts) but I think the fuse is more than 10A? I'm surprised it can't handle 2600 watts for short bursts. I'm no electrician though.

      It is slightly annoying to have a dual boiler system that is kind of crippled. I'll live with it but I don't really think it's totally optimal.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by YeastNCaffeine View Post
        I've had my Synchronika for a week and one thing that has been annoying me is that I can be steaming milk and the pump suddenly comes on drops the steam boiler pressure to under 1 bar. It's done it a few times now - very annoying. I love the machine but I don't like that the boilers aren't simultaneous - it's a bit of a pain.
        This is an older thread where a Profitec 500's pump was activated when steaming. It suggests that there may be an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.

        https://coffeesnobs.com.au/forum/equ...-milk-steaming

        Good luck.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by lancruiser View Post

          This is an older thread where a Profitec 500's pump was activated when steaming. It suggests that there may be an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.

          https://coffeesnobs.com.au/forum/equ...-milk-steaming

          Good luck.
          Oh great lol

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          • #20
            Alexcs- the big issue is basically that it's a wasted opportunity. The wall can supply 2400w but the machine is limiting itself to 1100w. If it will only consume 2200w to use both boilers simultaneously, leaving 200w overhead for pump/pid. If it's crippled deep in the software then I can't even install a 15A circuit (3600w) for the extra headroom

            an e61 may take 30 mins to come up to temp properly, but sometimes I don't care, and just want a coffee now, now, now. For $4500 it could at least be smart enough to provide partial power to the steam boiler rather than leaving it completely idle. If the steam boiler had 2 modes (700w standby or 110w full) then both boilers could opperate at only 1800w

            We expect too little of our $4500 hot water pumpers

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            • #21
              Originally posted by hugz View Post
              Alexcs- the big issue is basically that it's a wasted opportunity. The wall can supply 2400w but the machine is limiting itself to 1100w. If it will only consume 2200w to use both boilers simultaneously, leaving 200w overhead for pump/pid. If it's crippled deep in the software then I can't even install a 15A circuit (3600w) for the extra headroom

              an e61 may take 30 mins to come up to temp properly, but sometimes I don't care, and just want a coffee now, now, now. For $4500 it could at least be smart enough to provide partial power to the steam boiler rather than leaving it completely idle. If the steam boiler had 2 modes (700w standby or 110w full) then both boilers could opperate at only 1800w

              We expect too little of our $4500 hot water pumpers
              Yes that's essentially how I feel about it. I'll also add there's nothing worse than knowing something has been hobbled on purpose and knowing other people in other countries have more options. It makes you feel like a second class citizen. We can get 15A circuits in Australia if we want. Pretty sure my oven runs on one. Sure I might have to call an electrician...

              I didn't really enjoy reading yesterday that they aren't really designed to be left on for too long implying they aren't insulated that well either. Then I have to wonder if running the steam boiler at their new whizz bang 2 bar pressure is a good idea due to the extra temperature required to achieve that tand have they improved the insulation to cope with it... I'll bet not... Happy to be corrected. No problems for them if it fails 5 years earlier as long as it lasts past the warranty period.

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              • level3ninja
                level3ninja commented
                Editing a comment
                Most ovens run on between 10-40A, yes you can pretty much have any size circuit you want.

            • #22
              The issue is whether you have a circuit designed for it. 10A is not enough, 15A is.

              Jet Black Espresso can probably confirm this or clarify, but i believe you can get a simultaneous heating PID from them, it is only not available by default because it would be dangerous if someone just puts the machine on a regular 10A socket.

              It is not a missed opportunity so much as a practical limitation of how much power we can push through the machine on standard Aus sockets.

              The other option would be to put less powerful elements, but then they would not be able to react as quickly or maintain temps as well, given the system is designed to prioritise the brew boiler over the steam boiler, so when it needs to blast it with power, it can, whereas if you were using weaker heating elements, you'd just have less power on tap for a given boiler at any time.


              The issue around the pump coming on and bringing dropping your pressure during a brew is annoying, but it's got nothing to do with the heat.
              That system is detecting that the steam boiler is running low on water, and filling it up, thus diverting water from the brew boiler.
              You could make the system not activate the refil during a brew, but that may put the steam boiler at risk of running with the level too low.
              Another option would be to fill more aggressively, i.e not let the level drop as low, but then that would just increase the chances of it activating during a brew.

              One way you can avoid the problem, is to induce a refill, by bleeding a bit of water out of the steam boiler via the hot water valve. This will cause a full refill and avoid the problem

              If you *really* wanted to avoid the problem, you'd have two dedicated pumps, but now we're basically building two entire machines inside a single chassis...

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              • #23
                also, time is not a big issue here, as far as heat up goes, so simultaneous heating wouldn't do much.
                The synkronika takes about 5min to finish the brew boiler, then another 10 for the steam boiler.
                you should be waiting at least that long for the temp to equalise in the brew head, so you haven't really lost anything.

                Once the system is running at steady state, the alternating heating and other things it does are more than enough to maintain the temps

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                • #24
                  Originally posted by Cats View Post
                  The other option would be to put less powerful elements, but then they would not be able to react as quickly or maintain temps as well, given the system is designed to prioritise the brew boiler over the steam boiler, so when it needs to blast it with power, it can, whereas if you were using weaker heating elements, you'd just have less power on tap for a given boiler at any time.

                  The other option is to give the steam element a "standard" mode (1400w) and "standby" mode (700w), The steam element goes into standby when the brew element is on, resulting in a total power usage of 1400+700w (8.75A). This way the steam element is always doing something rather than sitting idle when the boiler element is on. Presumably this could be done pretty damn easily with pulse width modulation or a transformer or even just adding a second element to the steam boiler. The machine already has a computer in it.


                  Regarding filling while steaming- presumably this could fairly easily be fixed with a switch, either activated by the movement of the steam lever, or the movement of the steam itself (like a solonoid in reverse). Personally, I prefer the machine to just follow the "instructions" of the autofill probe, even if it does potentially lose steam pressure

                  edit: come to think of it, the heating element on my $200 chinese 3d printer can be modified on the fly. presumably this is by varying the amount of power given to it
                  Last edited by hugz; 14 August 2020, 10:07 AM.

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                  • #25
                    Never even thought of this until now, will have to keep an eye.

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