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A grinder for camping expedition

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  • A grinder for camping expedition

    Hi all, it's been a while, but we are heading off for a couple weeks holiday camping and I have a Moka in the camping kit but want to grind some beans I've roasted up. What's the recommendations? Was looking at the Hario units but not sure if I want to put $40-50 down on something that is only used a couple times a year.

    Thanks guys, appreciate your insights!


  • #2
    Dave, there are many available options. If you aren't going to use it often, I suggest asking friends or family if they have one you can loan. If you do buy one. I can recommend the PORLEX hand grinders. I have experience with a few different hand grinders, including Hario, and have to say the Porlex produces the nicest grind and is higher in quality than many others (in it's price bracket). It's also very portable, and being stainless steel in construction, it's ideal for camping (can take a beating).

    Try a site sponsor, or ebay. You might be lucky to get a PORLEX as I've heard they had a factory fire which has slowed production recently.



    • #3
      Talk Coffee has special on Hario grinders at the moment could be worth a look.


      • #4
        I second the Porlex recommendation, for the same reasons as James.


        • #5
          Thanks for the recommendation Yelta.

          We have a few Porlex in stock as well.



          • #6
            I like the porlex except for one thing: that stupid pentagonal coupling system.


            • #7
              While the Porlex and Hario Mini Slim have a rather similar design. (central shaft, burrs, burr carrier, etc) the Porlex is just a better quality build. I've broken two Hario mini-slims after only a few uses each. The metal shaft would turn/strip inside the plastic burr carrier when grinding lightly roasted coffees. I found that the small crimped 'ears' on the metal shaft had manufacturing issues. Measuring both the Hario's with my digital calipers confirmed they have some variance in their shaft 'ear' size. This could be just poor quality control or manufacturing error. When my first unit was replaced under warranty, and my second unit suffered the same fate, I gave up and bought the porlex.

              The same shaft on the Porlex is clearly better quality, just by looking at it.

              Having said all that, these are my own experiences. I may have just had a bad 'batch' of hario grinders. I have indeed spoken with people who are more than satisfied with their hario hand grinders and have used them for a long time!

              I said to myself some time ago that Hario should just stick to glassware. I took delivery of the Hario drip scales late last year and had problems out of the box. It wouldn't even sit flat on a flat bench (wobbled) and required light sanding of it's feet to get it to sit flat. Did I mention they make great glassware?

              There are many options avail including the Orphan Espresso LIDO (large), Rosco (expensive), Kyocera, the range from Hario, Porlex tall/mini, and more. Do some reading around, if possible, loan one or try one out.

              Some things to be aware of with Porlex. the 'mini' will only hold maybe 25-30gm of whole-bean coffee in the hopper. The hario slim will hold a bit more. It's easy to just add more if you need it though. It fit's brilliantly inside the Aeropress (my recommendation for camping!)

              I highly recommend buying from a site sponsor. My hario(s) were bought through a site sponsor and the customer service was outstanding.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Hildy View Post
                I like the porlex except for one thing: that stupid pentagonal coupling system.
                you mean where the handle attaches? same deal with the hario slim and some others..


                • #9
                  I agree with James. I love my Porlex and I now use it every day to grind my coffee. Amazing how much coffee you save when you go to hand grinding. Yes it is more work but I quite enjoy it as it adds to the whole experience of preparing my coffee each morning.


                  • #10
                    I really like my Porlex mini, that said would be better with a hex coupler rather than a pentagonal coupler, would mean i could use something else other than their more fiddly handle.

                    That is my only gripe with it though, i use it regularly with my Aeropress and S-filter when we are away.


                    • #11
                      How about having your cake and eating it too. If you already have a burr grinder, take it with you and plug it into your inverter. Then you can have a proper coffee while watching tv :-)


                      • #12
                        I've been using a Porlex mini for the last 3 months (3 coffees a day). Does the job very well, is easy to clean and is much more compact than my Hario Skerton (which I've had no quality control issues with). The one possible design 'weakness' that it has is that the metal in the handle (or may the pentagonal coupler) is a little soft and so the 'coupling' isn't as tight as when brand biggie...just means that you get the occasional de-coupling if not paying attention. The other thing I like about the Porlex Mini is that the bean hopper has a lid, so beans can't escape while grinding.


                        • #13
                          Until recently the Porlex mini was my only grinder, espresso, Aeropress. It grinds best in the espresso region or just a touch coarser. If you get to coarse it starts to get really uneven.

                          I had the trouble with the soft metal where the handle attaches early on. I solved this by sticking it down with blue tack each time i used it. Very rarely had a de-coupling even going at it hammer and tong.

                          Also to make fine adjustments on the grind setting and have them stick, a 10mm nut tightened onto the adjustment wheel works wonders.

                          Great little grinder, i have given it a pretty good going over the last year and its still going strong when needed for mobile Aeropressing.


                          • #14
                            Steve, thanks for the pro tip on the 10mm nut!

                            any more tips?

                            I've moved the rubber band on the porlex mini as high on the unit that I can, so more of the grinder fits inside the aeropress


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by iamtakai View Post
                              I really like my Porlex mini, that said would be better with a hex coupler rather than a pentagonal coupler, would mean i could use something else other than their more fiddly handle.
                              If it had a standard 1/4" hex, I could use my mini ratcheting screwdriver with it.