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BES870 - is my machine faulty

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  • BES870 - is my machine faulty

    Hi everyone, been lurking for a while.

    I know there's approximately 978438602 threads on how to make a coffee and on the BES8XX range, but I've read through a lot and yet I haven't been able to extract a single decent coffee out of it, and it always comes out bitter.

    It's my parent's machine, so this is only coming up now although they've had it for 8 months.

    This has been with both supermarket beans (Vittoria coffee, Lavazza etc) and fresh beans (I currently have a Gesha coffee - Brazil pack) all yelding similar results.

    The coffee always comes out bitter.

    The best combination I've found is with:
    • Grind settings 3 or 4 (4 already requires a fair bit more force than the 5-20kg to reach the espresso pressure range).
    • Standard heat setting (tried -1c and +1c, not much difference. Coffee never seems quite hot enough though, although I would describe it tasting 'burnt')
    • Manual dosing - because the auto, even on the lowest setting, still makes excess ground coffee (with all coffees I've tried)


    Having tried pretty much ALL settings, regular maintenace and coffees (Supermarket, Fresh beans, Dark roast, light roast etc) it still tastes runny and bitter and has since day 1.

    At best I get a little more crema with the fresh beans, but still taste awful.

    I did bring it to David Jones last month to get it checked, but after having someone come in the shop, they called me and said the Breville guy said there was nothing wrong with it. Apparently they were going to tell me about the next time a rep was there so they could show us through it.

    My question is: do I suck at making coffee, or could there be something wrong with the machine?

    I can take pictures / provide more info if anyone needs.

    Any advice is really appreciated! Thanks

  • #2
    I find the built-in grinder on this machine clogs up with coffee real quick. Give it a good clean out, don't use supermarket beans and maybe post a video of what your shot pour looks like. I also find you have to grind it on the very fine end of it's grind setting spectrum. Try taking it down to ~1

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    • #3
      i feel your pain. I purchased a 870 a week ago and already have had to swap as it would no longer run water through the group head ( the hot water and steamer were fine). But even with a new machine I have used up about $40 worth of beans and still not had a coffee I can drink. Either bitter or no body. I have tried 2 beans, one from my local coffee place that roast on site and they make a good Latte from these and the other from Seven Seed, Just north of the Melbourne CBD. All I get is garbage. Cannot drink it at all.

      Curious as to who runs any courses or can help in Melbourne as I am stuck. Not happy

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      • #4
        What are you using to grind your beans?

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        • #5
          On some 870's the grinders need shimming as they can't grind fine enough. It's rare but can happen.

          What setting do you have the grinder on? Where does the pressure gauge move to? Does the coffee flow out fast or slow?

          This machine is easy to get decent coffee from once the grinder is sorted.

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          • #6
            BES870 - is my machine faulty

            I've been using an 870 for 7 years now and am only just getting to the point where the grinder needs a shim, that said, I do overdose at about 18-9g to make up for the coarse grind :-) You can get a decent shot out of them though.

            Do you know what dose you are using at the moment? Getting that right, and consistent, is a good start on the 870.

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