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  • Tampers Flat or convex?

    Most likely been asked a 100 times before but which is the best? Are there circumstances where you would use one over the other. I need to buy one and not sure which way to go. I`ve read somewhere that if your shower screen is flat then use a flat tamper or a convex if your screen is slightly curved, is this just a myth. Some one please help. 8-)

  • #2
    Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

    Originally posted by 7C414C4B5C5A6D2E0 link=1264832515/0#0 date=1264832515
    Most likely been asked a 100 times before but which is the best? Are there circumstances where you would use one over the other. I need to buy one and not sure which way to go. I`ve read somewhere that if your shower screen is flat then use a flat tamper or a convex if your screen is slightly curved, is this just a myth. Some one please help.  8-)
    I tend to favour that the tamper shape should match the water dispersion screen

    Having said that a flat tamper is more popular & will do the job just as well

    KK

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    • #3
      Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

      Check out the Pullman website:

      http://www.coffeetamper.com.au/information/faq.html#flat-convex

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

        Next to impossible to assess Robert.... :-?

        If someone can devise a method that removes all other variables from the process, such that the effect of the Tamper design alone can be isolated, I think that this question is going to remain one that will be posed ad infinitum throughout the ages....

        Mal.

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        • #5
          Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

          I went for a flat one after reading up on the Pullman website.

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          • #6
            Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

            I have a flat and convex Pullman.
            The convex does make a better shot on my Brugnetti. This was with all things equal (as much as possible, one could argue that the convex would have less coffee in the basket). Same bean, same grinder, same grind, same basket. The Brugnetti has a convex shower screen.
            Plus one for a difference.

            On my Silvia I couldnt really pick a difference.
            Minus one for a difference.

            I was doing a market stall on a La Pavoni that has a flat shower screen. In a daze I forgot to tamp. It was locked in to the group head before my brain clicked. Thought "ah well" give it a go, its wasted any way. One of the best shots of the day!
            Plus one for..... I dont know! Does tamping matter at all?

            So who knows?

            If you remove all of the variables one of those variables will be the machine. So even if someone does the experiment it will probably mean nothing to you. Maybe even the basket will make a difference?

            If I HAD to make a choice/give advise I would lean to what KK said, convex tamper for convex screen, flat tamper for flat screen.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

              Some months ago I pulled a shot on my Expobar through a bottomless portafilter that poured just beautifully - perfect pour time, extraction pattern etc. That was with a flat tamper. So I immediately pulled another shot, everything else the same but used a convex tamper. The result was near enough to identical to call identical.

              Someone may find one shape tamper works better with one type of machine, someone else may find the opposite works better with a different machine. At the end of the day I think there are more important issues to be worrying about than 1.5mm of curve on the bottom of the tamper. That said I dont think the debate is going to go away anytime soon - if youre not sure flip a coin and Im sure youll be happy either way.

              Greg

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              • #8
                Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                Thanks all. Went for the convex and worked fine. And guess what 2 days later my Gaggia Babby karked it. Hows that. Oh well on the lookout for a another s/h machine now.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                  I would also like to say thanks for all the advice above. I am a relative beginner to the coffee snob world and am about to get a new machine and grinder (silvia/rocky I think). I was getting very confused about convex vs flat tampers.

                  I think in a kind of confusing way, this has cleared it up. Mostly by making me realise it doesnt really matter. Im gonna go with the flat Tamper I think. Ill let you all know if I solve the mystery!!

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                  • #10
                    Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                    Ill echo Foz. Im about to do the grinder (and likely machine) upgrade and was a little confused about the tamper thing. I think Ill end up going with the gut.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                      Originally posted by 3A392B2B2F3921580 link=1264832515/5#5 date=1265150615
                      I was doing a market stall on a La Pavoni that has a flat shower screen. In a daze I forgot to tamp. It was locked in to the group head before my brain clicked. Thought "ah well" give it a go, its wasted any way. One of the best shots of the day!
                      Plus one for..... I dont know! Does tamping matter at all?

                      So who knows?

                      If you remove all of the variables one of those variables will be the machine. So even if someone does the experiment it will probably mean nothing to you. Maybe even the basket will make a difference?
                      One of the best posts that Ive seen on this subject in a while. It supports the opinion that tamping is mainly an aid to getting the dose and distribution right.

                      I would certainly support the contention that the machine and the basket (which can vary in taper and depth as well as volume) are much more likely to make a difference that a tamper.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                        Originally posted by 5865686F787E490A0 link=1264832515/7#7 date=1267646266
                        Thanks all. Went for the convex and worked fine. And guess what 2 days later my Gaggia Babby karked it.  Hows that. Oh well on the lookout for a another s/h machine now.
                        Wow! Thats the best argument against a convex tamper Ive ever heard - convex tamper = dead machine!!

                        ...the other main reason I use a flat tamper is that it sits flat on the bench without rocking around.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                          Originally posted by 594C5B594E4B5252535F503E0 link=1264832515/6#6 date=1265155858
                          Someone may find one shape tamper works better with one type of machine, someone else may find the opposite works better with a different machine.
                          Morning Greg, I believe it has something to do with alignment of the stars, or was it moon phases, it could even be (heaven forbid) something to do with operator skill levels? all very mysterious stuff. :

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Tampers Flat or convex?

                            Originally posted by 4D4B524A5F50514D495750593E0 link=1264832515/11#11 date=1275015816
                            ...the other main reason I use a flat tamper is that it sits flat on the bench without rocking around.
                            Cant argue with this type of logic.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Convex or flat tampers the best?

                              I was admiring Greg Pullmans tampers and noted that the 58mm comes in 2 flavours - convex and flat, while the 57mm only comes in flat. Why is this, and what are the pros / cons of convex vs. flat?

                              thanks in advance for humouring any stupid questions...

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