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(Re)Learning to Drive

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  • (Re)Learning to Drive

    Thanks KK for the thread title

    So moving from Silvia to Vivian is a bit like learning to drive a new car. Certain things stay the same, other things are quite different. I thought Id start this thread as an amateurs guide to getting set up on a new machine, sharing my experiences and getting the valuable input of those more knowledgeable than myself.

    Aim:
    To get a reproduceable high quality espresso.

    Equipment:
    VBM Domobar Super
    Macap M4
    Pullman Tamp
    Lots of beans
    Notepad (to record results)

    Method:
    Grind
    Distribute (WDT)
    Tamp
    Pull shot

    Ive read many times about the golden guideline and never thought to check exactly how much 30mL is. Heres a pic of 30mL of water in an espresso cup. Nice to know I dont need to fill it.




    My first task was to identify how much coffee should be in the basket. As suggested by many people, I first loaded up and then locked in to the group. Removal showed a nice gash on one edge - too much coffee.

    Its worth mentioning at this point that use of WDT tends to fluff the grounds a fair bit, so under dosing (by eye) the pf can easily result in a correct dose (by volume). I should have thought to take a photo of this, Ill insert one here this afternoon.

    Dosing less resulted in a puck that wasnt damaged pre-pull. Ok - we have a starting point. By the way, if anyone can explain how Scottie manages to collapse three times in the ECA video and still lock in Id love to hear it!

    Grant

  • #2
    Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

    First shot:
    [media]http://video.google.com.au/googleplayer.swf?docid=6199903619376092959&hl=un&f s=true[/media]

    In the cup:


    Notes:
    First thoughts were that the pour may have started too quickly. Preinfusion generally ends around the 6-7 second mark, and the pour started about half a second after ramping up to full pressure.
    The colour was nice, although after watching the video I should have finished the pull about second 29 on the video - funny how noticeable the stream thinning out is.

    Grant

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    • #3
      Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

      One full turn on the screw finer.

      Second shot:
      [media]http://video.google.com.au/googleplayer.swf?docid=-7590633247900997312&hl=un&fs=true[/media]


      In the cup:


      Notes:
      Mousetailing towards the end implies channeling. Looking at the puck afterwards it has pulled away from the edge, which indicates I need a better seal around the edge of the portafilter. Mouthful was nice, though the volume of the shot was smaller. Ill leave all my settings as they are and work on my technique.

      Thats all for this morning. More to come when I get home this afternoon.

      Grant

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

        Thanks for sharing your renewed driving skills !!

        Looks like you are advancing well!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

          Yeah, its getting closer.

          I wont tell you how much coffee I wasted dialling in the new grinder - Andy would kill me.

          I found a lot of resources that show you a gusher and say "dial grind finer" and then show an oily, extremely slow dripper that say "dial grind coarser". Im yet to find something that shows pours which are close to correct and identify what needs to be changed to take it to the next level.

          Im hoping with the experience on this board that this thread can address that deficiency.

          Grant

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

            Grant you probably didnt waste as much coffee as I did : :-[

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

              I am struggling with getting the correct dose in the portafilter.
              I have been checking the puck after I engage the portafilter and before brewing and am finding that even with the dose quite low in the basket, the puck is being disrupted.
              Should you be able to remove the portafilter before brewing and still have the puck perfectly intact?

              Marie

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                Originally posted by 41554E494042784350424B4B4255270 link=1231714559/0#0 date=1231714559
                By the way, if anyone can explain how Scottie manages to collapse three times in the ECA video and still lock in Id love to hear it!

                Grant

                This is indeed one of lifes great mysteries....

                My theory is that during the finger sweep he is replicating what would happen if he were to use SC Dosing Tool #2 or 3.   I have just purchased a mini set to have a play. I dont trust the accuracy/consistency of my finger, and many times using the straight edge of a knife to sweep results in over dosing (even after tinkering with grind, and tamp pressure).

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                  Thanks KK for the thread title  
                  My pleasure FD
                  With regards to your grind setting
                  Always grind to a consistency of table salt as a starting point

                  My personal preference is to grind courser and tamp harder
                  This gives one more crema and flavour of the coffee (try it)


                  Originally posted by 55594A415A380 link=1231714559/6#6 date=1231719961
                  I am struggling with getting the correct dose in the portafilter.
                  I have been checking the puck after I engage the portafilter and before brewing and am finding that even with the dose quite low in the basket, the puck is being disrupted.
                  Should you be able to remove the portafilter before brewing and still have the puck perfectly intact?

                  Marie
                  Marie
                  This all depends on your individual machine
                  As I have said in other posts with regards to my Bezzera Galatea the depth I need to tamp is 8mm to clear the shower screen
                  When you find the correct depth for your machine note it down and use it for future reference.

                  KK

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                    Thanks KK

                    I have a Maver Marte Makin Espresso.

                    I have worked out the level it needs to be at, which is lower that what Ive been doing.  I had been told to feel a litttle resistance as I engage the portafilter, but I think that resistance would have to be the puck coming up against the shower screen (and breaking up).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                      Originally posted by 54584B405B390 link=1231714559/9#9 date=1231727415
                      Thanks KK

                      I have a Maver Marte Makin Espresso.

                      I have worked out the level it needs to be at, which is lower that what Ive been doing.  I had been told to feel a litttle resistance as I engage the portafilter, but I think that resistance would have to be the puck coming up against the shower screen (and breaking up).
                      Yea Marie the puck should clear the screen by a hairs whisker to 1mm
                      This is in part because during the brew process the coffee grounds expand a small amount, and they need that space to do so

                      Thats over and above the obvious as you have mentioned (damaged puck) if to high in the basket

                      KK



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                      • #12
                        Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                        Originally posted by 70545D5D5E5E6470544856543B0 link=1231714559/8#8 date=1231724279
                        My personal preference is to grind courser and tamp harder
                        This gives one more crema and flavour of the coffee (try it)
                        KK what number in general do you have your grinder on?
                        going by the silver button?

                        also if you are grinding coarser does it still come out slow enough?

                        A few coffees i made had a few coffee grains in them so i figure it is too fine? :-/

                        Grant Sorry to hijack your thread!! :-[

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                          Oonga
                          I dont have a silver button on my M4D stepped grinder I have a black button to adjust grind
                          The silver button is used as a choice of single/double/continuous grind dose and as a timer set up

                          I will assume you have the stepped model
                          I mostly grind between 1.5 to 2.2 on the dial

                          The silver timer is set at
                          Double 9.4 seconds
                          Single is 5.4 seconds
                          Note that is based on my machine at you may need to adjust for your machine as required

                          Hope that helps

                          KK

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                            KK
                            I have the same grinder as you do

                            I meant the silver button you press for changing the program say from continuous does to single dose or double dose.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: (Re)Learning to Drive

                              Sorry Oonga
                              I re read you question and while I was modifying my answer
                              you came in with another reply

                              So here is that answer

                              The silver timer is set at
                              Double 9.4 seconds
                              Single is 5.4 seconds
                              Note that is based on my machine at you may need to adjust for your machine as required

                              Hope that helps
                              KK

                              Comment

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