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Thread: Weight vs level grind in PF

  1. #1
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    Weight vs level grind in PF

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi all

    Got my Cuadra & Mignon the other day and having lots of fun making some the best tasting coffee I and my family has ever had.

    Just like to say thanks for all the help from all of you CSs and especially Damiano from Espresso Italia! I thought he might want to kill me after sending so many question/emails.

    Ive done quite a bit of research here and on the net and am confused with dosage for my single PF basket. Everywhere I read to dose 7-8g but it doesnt look like its enough. I tried a few shots with this way and wasnt getting great results and the puck was sloppy and water logged before knocking out.

    Then I thought Id go with the "just fill the basket and level off before tamping" method. Im putting a double hit of the migon into the PF (14-17g) and getting the desired result!!!! ;D

    So what are your thoughts?


  2. #2
    A_M
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Quote Originally Posted by 7E5B4D565E51503F0 link=1278551069/0#0 date=1278551069
    Then I thought Id go with the "just fill the basket and level off before tamping" method. Im putting a double hit of the migon into the PF (14-17g) and getting the desired result!!!!

    So what are your thoughts?
    Only way to go..

    Its whats in the cup...

    Forget the numbers unless you learn to subscribe to 2 + 2 = 5 (It works for me and many others).

    Great to hear ya getting the results you expect.

  3. #3
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Thanks AM.

    Im not even using a proper Tamper yet. Just the one I got in the with the machine. Crappy little plastic thing.

    My mother in law got me a 57mm tamper from a coffee shop and its not big enough!!! So I am taking it back. My Cuadra specs say 57mm and she was told the tamper is 57 mm. Theres probably about 3mm of room around the tamper. Is this normal? Regardless Im taking my PF in with me to exchange for one that fits perfect.


  4. #4
    A_M
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Quote Originally Posted by 0326302B232C2D420 link=1278551069/2#2 date=1278553712
    Thanks AM.

    Im not even using a proper Tamper yet. Just the one I got in the with the machine. Crappy little plastic thing.

    My mother in law got me a 57mm tamper from a coffee shop in the and its not big enough!!! So I am taking it back. My Cuadra specs say 57mm though and she was told the tamper is 57 mm. Theres probably about 3mm of room around the tamper. Is this normal? Regardless Im taking my PF in with me to exchange for one that fits perfect.
    The crapy tamper is OK... It the USER :D ;D ;) Well ya can still get great coffee, but a better tamper does make it a little easer 8-)

    I would expect to see a slight gap depending on the basket shape/style and to what level you dosing... 3mm how ever sounds a bit much...

    My 54 is tight if I under dose and has some slop when I up dose (UP not OVER).

    Keep up the good work and make sure ya MIL is thanked and does not feel she has don the wrong thing.. MILs are great when they are on ya side ;)

  5. #5
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Thanks for posting the question as Ive been playing with similar things. Ive always found that dosing by weight just seems to not leave enough in the basket after tamping, resulting in sloppy pucks and blonde waterfalls.
    For me; the shower screen screw on the rancilio is a hex nut (3mm think maybe?) so I worked out that when the tamped coffee only just touches the nut I get better results. This transposed to a certain level in the double basket and so I distribute/tamp to that. Cos my grinder is manual (sunbeam, I know, I know...feel my pain) this is the easiest way for me to get any sort of consistency.
    Im really thinking about buying a kilo of some off the shelf beans and doing some serious written down, gram by gram, volume up/down, tamp pressure recording. Obviously bean varieties will differ but Im guessing the basic findings that work best for me and my machine should apply to any bean right?

  6. #6
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Quote Originally Posted by 5A5846455843444D2A0 link=1278551069/4#4 date=1279067546
    Ive always found that dosing by weight just seems to not leave enough in the basket after tamping
    Morning Petel, what type of scales are you using? my suggestion is get a set of cheap digital jewellers scales off the bay, cheap, about $10 and very accurate, gradually increase the dose rate, until you get the dose you are aiming for, if the shot is still gushing start grinding finer and reduce/increase the dose rate as needed, only change one variable at a time and make notes.

    Quote Originally Posted by 5A5846455843444D2A0 link=1278551069/4#4 date=1279067546
    Im really thinking about buying a kilo of some off the shelf beans and doing some serious written down, gram by gram, volume up/down, tamp pressure recording.
    Good idea but do the tests with good freshly roasted beans, the results will be a lot more accurate than trying to work with stale supermarket beans, and of course you can drink the mistakes, they cant be all that bad. ;)

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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Quote Originally Posted by 2527393A273C3B32550 link=1278551069/4#4 date=1279067546
    should apply to any bean right?
    Nope what works with one bean will not be exactly right for another, it will also change as the bean ages. Not that it wont be useful to do but you wont be left with a wonderful formula that you can use in all situations. As someone around here says 2 + 2 often = 5 with coffee.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator Javaphile's Avatar
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Quote Originally Posted by 5456484B564D4A43240 link=1278551069/4#4 date=1279067546
    Thanks for posting the question as Ive been playing with similar things. Ive always found that dosing by weight just seems to not leave enough in the basket after tamping, resulting in sloppy pucks and blonde waterfalls.
    You dont use the same weight for every bean. Nor even the same weight for the same bean one day to the next or even in many cases on the same day. You need to adjust both the grind and the weight until you get the right combination that yields a good shot. As the beans age and as the temp and humidity change youll have to change the grind/weight to accommodate those variables.


    Java "I guess I need to fix my calculator. It keeps telling me 2+2=4!" phile

  9. #9
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Once your pulling shots to your satisfaction with fresh beans providing you continue using beans from the same roast adjustments are easy, running a bit fast .25 to .50 gram more, slow, reduce by similar amount or adjust the grind up or down by small increments, remember adjust either weight or grind separately not both together.
    And as Java says, age, temp and humidity may well affect the pour quite often i.e. daily, and of course a new batch of beans will mean going through the process again, once youve got the idea it becomes second nature. ;)

  10. #10
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    I guess Ive been thinking about this because my curiosity made me go against the whats good in the cup theory and weigh a dry dose/tamped puck to find 19g in my basket :-? so I then weighed and pulled 14g but didnt even bother to taste the result.
    I now have a better machine (after 6mnths without one) and wanting to take things a little more seriously/accurately. (yknow, when you learn more, you have to learn even more to fully understand what you just learned, argh its never ending - but fun.

    Jon. - yeah I was using digital scales but they only read to the gram, so I would weigh, take some out, re weigh, put half back, re-weigh etc to guesstimate as best I could the fractions of a gram.
    True, I should use some propper beans.

    Moto & Java - sure, I understand the theory that beans, age, temp, humidity affect the result but my pallet/skills (and my grinder) are not yet refined enough to tell if the problem with that last shot was a change in humidity in my kitchen, especially since I know that some fairly big variables are just that, variable.
    I guess Im trying to say that, if I can learn that generally my style/machine/taste likes an up dose, finer grind, medium tamp or whatever then that will be the starting point for any new beans, to adjust as necessary. So yeah, a starting point is what Im after. At the moment, especially with a new machine diagnosing is a bit hit and miss.

  11. #11
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Sounds like you are on the way, the best way to get to know how to use your machine is to...well use your machine, play with the variables find out what works and take it from there. If you get a benefit from doing things in a systematic way (which sounds like a good idea to me) then buy a kg of (decent) beans and go for it. Invite a like minded person around if you can as another set of eyes/pallet is always handy.

  12. #12
    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: Weight vs level grind in PF

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Sometimes I hate being logical. ;D

    If you have the right volume for that bean, just weigh the basket with the grounds and subtract the empty basket weight. This should be good for most shots with that bean. Ill bet ageing and humidity wouldnt make a difference greater than 1 gram. Of course this is mostly useful if you individual dose your grinder.

    Greg



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