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Breville BES860 - getting the hang of it !

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  • Breville BES860 - getting the hang of it !

    Hi all,
    I recently bought a BES860 (after returning a sunbeam 5900-and wrote a whole other thread about that in the under $500 section!) :
    I am really pleased with it so far, it seems perfect for my level, (I previously had a BES250 and wanted to move on a bit) and I am currently experimenting to get things the way I want.

    I started with the dual walls and my pre-ground coffee : , then bought some beans yesterday and switched to the single wall baskets, which surprised me by worked fairly well straight away!

    The only issue I am getting though is when I pull a single shot the programmed 1-shot only gives me around 20-25mls, and it runs through in under 10 seconds (from the time it starts pouring out, not from pressing the button)
    The coffee itself looks and tastes ok, though the crema is pretty shallow. The gauge needle in the right place when it starts extracting, maybe towards the lower side of ok.
    I know I can alter the pre-programmed shots to run for longer until I get around 30mls, but I dont want to change that yet if I am doing something else wrong --- what do you think? Do I need to alter the grind, or my tamp pressure?? :-?
    What I am aiming for is more volume (30ml), longer extraction time, and probably richer crema. Acheivable?

    (The beans are good, roasted 7 days ago then sealed until yesterday, and obviously I am grinding immediately before the extraction with the built-in grinder)

    I have seen a few threads about this machine but none I could find having the same issue. Any helpful advice would be welcome!


  • #2
    Re: Breville BES860 - getting the hang of it !

    Originally posted by 57554F544E5B53544D53565E56535C5F3A0 link=1317857168/0#0 date=1317857168
    the programmed 1-shot only gives me around 20-25mls, and it runs through in under 10 seconds
    ...
    The gauge needle in the right place when it starts extracting
    I told you that you were one of us Just beware that this is not a numbers game - ignore the exact place of the needle, the number on the grinder, the exact number of seconds... it changes with time of day, age of beans, and the phase of the moon (not really the moon, but you get my point!).  Consistency is important, but not the exact numbers.

    And 25mL is fine, although 10s is a bit short.  The mantra is usually 25-30mL in 25-30s, not spot-on 30mL in 30s.

    Originally posted by 57554F544E5B53544D53565E56535C5F3A0 link=1317857168/0#0 date=1317857168
    Do I need to alter the grind, or my tamp pressure??
    what youll find is most people ditch the single baskets for this reason - they require a whole different range of settings from grinding, to extracting.  Youll need a finer grind, different dose (obviously its smaller), possibly even different tamp...  Its a pain to move the grinder each time you want to switch from single to double.

    As an alternative you can either do double shots all the time for yourself, make a ristretto when you dont have a drinking partner, or pour the second into a shot glass as the first goes in your cup just to see what it looks like (watching creama is like watching fire - everyone stares!)

    hope that helps

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    • #3
      Re: Breville BES860 - getting the hang of it !

      I was getting good coffee with my 860 but now I am getting a better brew with my 900.

      I was mainly using the single shot single walled basket.

      If you are tamping firmly and getting such a quick flow, I think your are grinding too coarse.

      It is good that you got away from the pre-ground.

      Try changing only one thing at a time such as grind and as explained by iandb the numbers are only a guide. It’s what’s in the cup that counts.

      As you are using good fresh beans, you should be able to solve your problems by adjusting the grind, dose and tamp.

      After some time my 860 would not grind fine enough and I had to get inside and do some modifications. If you do a search you will find my methods.

      Barry

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      • #4
        Re: Breville BES860 - getting the hang of it !

        Well it didnt take long to get things right on track with this machine - milk is perfect every time right from the start, and as for the coffee itself I basically went from one end of the spectrum to the other, (from weak and watery to treacle dripping out!!) then found my happy middle ground Going to the extremes first helped me find exactly what I wanted.

        I have the grinder on setting 8, tamp with less pressure than I thought was neccesary and hey presto, beaut coffee for me.

        I am even getting to taste the difference in coffee beans and different roasts from a couple of local roasters, which is a little bit addictive in inself

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