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Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

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  • Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

    I have been using the Silvia + Rocky combo for about 6 months now.

    Generally happy with the result, but I was wondering what other users think about the Rockys ability to produce fine grinds.

    It seems that to get an extraction time of about 20-25 seconds for 60mL of espresso using a double basket, I need to leave my Rocky at its true zero point which is at +2 (the burrs just touch at +1 with no beans inside).

    If I dont tamp the coffee down hard enough or under-dose the coffee by a tiny bit, the shot just pours out in 15 seconds. I now pack the coffee so that there is a bit of tightness when I squeeze in the portafilter into the Silvia to 90 degrees.

    To me, the problem is that this means that there is no wiggle room. I think normally a decent grinder should be able to grind fine enough so there are several grades of fine-ness (reserved for Turkish coffee for example) beyond the setting that gives you the traditional 30mL single shot or 60mL double shot in 20-25 seconds.

    The Lelit PL043 grinder which Ive recently played with seems to only require a mid-setting to produce the correctly sized grind. In fact at one of the finer settings (not even the finest), the coffee was coming out drop by drop. Having seen this, Im tempted to sell the Rocky and get the PL043 which is cheaper (about AU$450 for the Rocky and $350 for the Lelit).

    Any ideas on what Im doing wrong with my Rocky so I feel like the grinds arent fine enough, at its finest setting?

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

    Does it grind fine enough?

    Yes, and then some and without wishing to disrespect someone elses product, to go from rocky to the other would be at best a sideways step and not worth the investment. If you are going to spend money, do it in order to invest in much better equipment.

    If you are not under dosing, and are using good fresh beans, there shouldnt be a problem.

    If you are using stale beans or beans that have been open to the air or moisture, then there definitely will be a problem. Beans that are stored in the fridge are certainly always suspect.

    If you are using fresh beans and are not under dosing, then I am afraid the only other answer I can think of is to suggest you contact your retailer for advice.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

      Hi and thank you for a quick response.

      I understand your point about the beans - Ive experimented with various beans ranging from the stale supermarket variety to the quality beans from original Campos Newtown and Mecca Espresso in Sydney CBD, and have found that the cheap beans will spit out 60mL in 10 seconds no matter how fine the grind.

      When Im out of fresh beans, I use 1kg supermarket beans as a backup until I buy more of the good stuff.

      However, my disappointment results from the Darkhorse Blend from Mecca which Ive recently finished (was roasted about 10 days before I bought it). Depending on how much coffee I managed to pack into my double basket, I was sometimes getting a 60mL double shot in under 20 seconds with very little crema, at the Rockys finest setting.

      I figured if I had the cheaper Lelit I could dial in a much finer grind when I encounter problems such as these.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

        Originally posted by 7B776E7974796C6C7D180 link=1329690917/2#2 date=1329692243
        When Im out of fresh beans, I use 1kg supermarket beans as a backup until I buy more of the good stuff.
        Thats a lot of beans for normal home use, considering they are likely to be stale before purchase.

        Originally posted by 7B776E7974796C6C7D180 link=1329690917/2#2 date=1329692243
        Depending on how much coffee I managed to pack into my double basket, I was sometimes getting a 60mL double shot in under 20 seconds with very little crema, at the Rockys finest setting.
        I dont know your experience level, so excuse me if Im sounding condescending, but keep in mind there are other factors. For example, if you are over dosing, it could be that your puck is fractured as you insert the portafilter - this would result in a faster pour, of poor quality.


        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

          Originally posted by 75627A78110 link=1329690917/3#3 date=1329693306

          Originally posted by 7B776E7974796C6C7D180 link=1329690917/2#2 date=1329692243
          Depending on how much coffee I managed to pack into my double basket, I was sometimes getting a 60mL double shot in under 20 seconds with very little crema, at the Rockys finest setting.
          I dont know your experience level, so excuse me if Im sounding condescending, but keep in mind there are other factors. For example, if you are over dosing, it could be that your puck is fractured as you insert the portafilter - this would result in a faster pour, of poor quality.

          My experience is pretty limited. I made lattes at home for about 6 years with a cheap Sunbeam but had no clue what I was doing the whole time. Last 6 months Ive used the Silvia, I was a bit more informed, thanks to the internet.

          To avoid dosing problems, Ive started to use the WDT. I found that the plastic rice measuring cup that comes free with the Sunrice brand of rice is perfect for this.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

            Hi Covalatte,

            If you really are at the finest setting on your Rocky and its not fine enough when using fresh beans and a ball-park correct dose, your Rocky needs some attention from your retailer. If you bought it here we can check it and let you know whether its OK or not.

            charlie

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

              Originally posted by 597667517F72707850727576130 link=1329690917/5#5 date=1329693896
              Hi Covalatte,

              If you really are at the finest setting on your Rocky and its not fine enough when using fresh beans and a ball-park correct dose, your Rocky needs some attention from your retailer. If you bought it here we can check it and let you know whether its OK or not.

              charlie

              Hi Charlie,

              I bought it around September last year from your store.

              The blends Ive tried so far include the Campos Superior blend, the Mecca Darkhorse blend, and various single origin roasts from Charlie Lovett in Crows Nest.

              Of these, the Darkhorse blend demonstrated the problem where the finest setting seemed apparently not fine enough.

              The others were okay-ish, with 20-30 sec extraction times achievable on repeated attempts. However the fact remains that I must always use the finest setting available, whereas the reviews Ive read suggest that the correct setting is a few settings coarser than the zero point.

              Im on my annual leave at the moment.. and Ill gladly take up your offer to check my grinder out. When will you be at the store?

              Thank you

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                Our service department is open mon - fri, 9 - 5 so drop it off when convenient,

                charlie

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                  Ive just brought home some fresh (10 days old) Woolloomooloo blend beans from Tobys Estate.

                  I ground the beans at the finest setting, flushed out the old supermarket beans (i.e. threw out about a double baskets worth of coffee from the grinder), and prepared a double shot using the WDT + horizontal leveling off + tamping.

                  This is the result - a thick, creamy double shot espresso in about 28 seconds.

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccwqZkMtrLA

                  And this is a one-handed pour (I was holding the camera too) which is not my best effort due the the foam being a bit too thick for a latte.

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYO-RN_8vw8

                  You may ask why Im even wondering whether there is a problem - but basically my question comes down to whether it is normal to need the finest setting on the Rocky to achieve a 25-30 sec extraction time with quality fresh beans, or is this grinder supposed to have some room left if you know what I mean.

                  Depending on the advice, I may drop the grinder off at Charlies JetBlackEspresso. Cremorne used to be 10 mins drive away but Ive moved and now its 1 hour 

                  Thanks in advance.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                    Take it in and let them check it for you.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                      Originally posted by 56627563784F537F76767575100 link=1329690917/9#9 date=1329811202
                      Take it in and let them check it for you.

                      +1

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                        UPDATE:

                        Im pleased to report that after servicing at JetBlackEspresso, the problem is now fixed.

                        Ive had to use the finest grind setting from day 1, to get an extraction time of 20-30 sec with quality beans.

                        Now I need 5 settings above the finest setting to achieve the same, and the new finest setting will now grind the beans so fine that it clogs up the Silvia.

                        Not sure that Ill ever need the finer settings, but its good to know the grinder is working as it should, and who knows I might one day try Turkish coffee

                        Thanks JetBlackEspresso for the free warranty service!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                          Originally posted by 646871666B66737362070 link=1329690917/11#11 date=1331205515
                          Im pleased to report that after servicing at JetBlackEspresso, the problem is now fixed.

                          Ive had to use the finest grind setting from day 1, to get an extraction time of 20-30 sec with quality beans.

                          Now I need 5 settings above the finest setting to achieve the same, and the new finest setting will now grind the beans so fine that it clogs up the Silvia.

                          Good one. Glad to hear you got a great result.

                          Nice to have some room to move on the grinder.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                            My Rancilio Rocky has all of a sudden decided its a woodchipper not a coffee grinder. It has me flummoxed as up until this point it has worked pretty perfectly. No matter how fine i take grind setting, I reckon I could get a finer grind by crushing the beans with my own fingers. Does anyone have any tips or advice? Im reluctant to do too much amateur exploration inside the grinder for fear of causing more damage.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Rancilio Rocky - does it grind fine enough??

                              Originally posted by 072C2C2B2C2827490 link=1329690917/13#13 date=1334553662
                              My Rancilio Rocky has all of a sudden decided its a woodchipper  not a coffee grinder. It has me flummoxed as up until this point it has worked pretty perfectly. No matter how fine i take grind setting, I reckon I could get a finer grind by crushing the beans with my own fingers. Does anyone have any tips or advice? Im reluctant to do too much amateur exploration inside the grinder for fear of causing more damage.
                              Has anything changed recently?
                              EG: Did you perhaps unscrew the top burr for cleaning? Or is it possible someone else may have fiddled with it?

                              Can you get the burrs to touch?

                              I had an issue many years back with my Rocky where I had not fully screwed back in the upper burr after cleaning (about 2 rotations short) and at that point minor adjustments do absolutely nothing. Its TOO COARSE or TOO COARSE.

                              Brett.

                              Comment

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