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Thread: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

  1. #1
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    help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hello everyone.
    Been perusing this site for a while and have finally registered.

    I own a sunbeam 5800 at home and a sunbeam EM2300 at work, weve always just used supermarket pre-ground - harris espresso to be specific and have generally been quite happy.

    After reading here I have been motivated on improving my coffee.
    As a result I purchased a krupps un-pressurised double basket and also a new sunbeam EM0450 grinder ;D as Ive heard this can get good results for a cheap price.

    I have been playing with the level of grind and using the machine at work (havent tried the 5800 yet) and I have been improving things.
    My problem is, I understand that a good espresso shot should last about 18 seconds for 20ml, which is very slow and both machines have always flowed quite fast. Ive read to improve this one should a) grind finer and b) tamp harder.
    This is what Ive done and after my last shot which was ground on number 5, was much slower and looked very good. :D
    Problem is, grinding at this level results in coffee grinds getting through the basket and ending up in the coffee :(

    How is it people can do such fine level grinds required for good espresso and not have the coffee grinds ending up in the coffee?
    What am I doing wrong?
    Thanks for reading!

  2. #2
    A_M
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by 3322223E3D20520 link=1267139377/0#0 date=1267139377
    Hello everyone.
    Been perusing this site for a while and have finally registered.

    I own a sunbeam 5800 at home and a sunbeam EM2300 at work, weve always just used supermarket pre-ground - harris espresso to be specific and have generally been quite happy.

    After reading here I have been motivated on improving my coffee.
    As a result I purchased a krupps un-pressurised double basket and also a new sunbeam EM0450 grinder ;D as Ive heard this can get good results for a cheap price.

    I have been playing with the level of grind and using the machine at work (havent tried the 5800 yet) and I have been improving things.
    My problem is, I understand that a good espresso shot should last about 18 seconds for 20ml, which is very slow and both machines have always flowed quite fast. *Ive read to improve this one should a) grind finer and b) tamp harder.
    This is what Ive done and after my last shot which was ground on number 5, was much slower and looked very good. :D
    Problem is, grinding at this level results in coffee grinds getting through the basket and ending up in the coffee :(

    How is it people can do such fine level grinds required for good espresso and not have the coffee grinds ending up in the coffee?
    What am I doing wrong?
    Thanks for reading!
    Either grinds getting trapped on the screen and seal or you need to grind courser and tamp harder.

  3. #3
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Are you still using Harris beans? If so they are stale, and in order to get the grind fine enough to slow the pour enough to produce and acceptable shot you have to turn the beans to almost powder, the problem is then that the individual grinds of coffee are smaller than the holes in the basket hence they drop through. When you grind fresh beans and you get teh 30ml in 25 secs through grinding and tamping.....and you still get bits of grinds in the cup this is called......fines, and that is generally the grinders fault, producing inconsistent sized particles, and the "fines" are forced through the basket.....


    hope this helps!
    cheers
    warren

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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Yes my mate had some Harris beans which I am using.

    So youre saying fresher beans will flow slower than staler beans?

    Guess Ill have to buy some fresh beans and go for a coarser grind yet harder tamp?

    Thanks for your inputs.

  5. #5
    TC
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by 5D4C4C50534E3C0 link=1267139377/3#3 date=1267142488
    Yes my mate had some beans which I am using.
    I use those beans too....They make great compost.....just dont attempt to drink the stuff! *::)

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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by 4352524E4D50220 link=1267139377/3#3 date=1267142488
    Yes my mate had some Harris
    ha ha its always the "mate" I had a laugh ;D jokes mate ;)

    Quote Originally Posted by 4352524E4D50220 link=1267139377/3#3 date=1267142488
    So youre saying fresher beans will flow slower than staler beans?
    yep ;) you HAVE to make sure they are fresh though, this will generally be from a local roaster, or even better, from Andy in brownbay, his award winning Espresso WOW blend is amazing to say the least ;) and guaranteed fresh!

    With the fresh beans you will have to grind courser, you will "choke" the machine if you try at the same grind setting you have for the harris, think of fresh coffee as a living food, and stale coffee is well and truly dead and totally dry [smiley=thumbdown.gif]

  7. #7
    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    When I was looking at unpressurised baskets for a Breville Ikon, I decided the holes in the Krups baskets were too big for my liking.

    Greg

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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Hey guys,

    My problem is worse than ever.

    I am getting THE worst extraction, I didnt even think it would be possible given what Im using.

    So we bought fresh dibella beans, ground fresh, tamped with heavy stainless steel tamp and I get about 1 second of dark brown good looking coffee then it just turns to water within 2 seconds.
    It is ridiculous.

    I dont know what to do here, I can try grinding finer but then Ill start getting grains in my coffee. The beans are fresh as can be.
    Can anyone suggest something for me to try?
    I dont think the machine could be the cause of this could it?

  9. #9
    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by 6E7F7F63607D0F0 link=1267139377/7#7 date=1269038790
    I get about 1 second of dark brown good looking coffee then it just turns to water within 2 seconds.
    This sounds like channelling. Unfortunately, diagnosing over the internet is fraught with difficulties so Im going to suggest that you do one of two things:

    1. Put a call out here for a Snob who can help you in person.

    2. Attend a course (hopefully put on by one of the sponsors).

    Your equipment and supplies are capable of fine coffee.

    Greg

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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Quote Originally Posted by 5C4D4D51524F3D0 link=1267139377/7#7 date=1269038790
    Can anyone suggest something for me to try?
    I dont think the machine could be the cause of this could it?
    You just cant go wrong with Gregs suggestion above. *Quality training will achieve more in 2 hours than 2 weeks of text based instruction via CS etc.

    Until that happens though.....

    An important part of the equation hasnt been mentioned yet. *Have you checked your dose? *Too low a dose (not enough coffee in the basket) can also result in channelling, no matter how fine your grind or how hard your tamp. *Perhaps youd like to consider the following:

    Ensure your dose is sufficient to create a firm puck with some give. *What does that mean? *(This is where text fails). *Removing the group handle after an extraction, you should be able to press down on the puck and feel.....something like....
    - The matting they put down under childrens playgrounds nowadays. *Rubber based spongy stuff. *Firm with a little give.
    - Do you know the pinch test to check your steak is cooked? *You pinch your thumb and a finger (finger depends on level of "done-ness") together and feel the fleshy part of your palm (under your thumb). *Press your thumb and little finger together and feel that fleshy part. *In other words, it should feel like a well done steak. Something like that. *(refer pic)

    It should neither be hard nor soft/spongy (kitchen sponge) or soupy (a slurry of coffee and water)

    Once your dose is correct, you can then work on your grind and tamp.

    Finally, pls excuse my crude attempt at turning a physical property into words. *Have I mentioned how important hands on training is??? *:)

    Epic76

    edit: addition of what the puck shouldnt look like


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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    I made a couple of coffees this afternoon which came out more or less identical.
    They were better than my previous ones, though still flow too quickly.

    As for the puck, it was maybe a bit wet on top but quite dry and firm throughout. Im guessing its maybe wetter than it should be. After my tamp the coffee is pressed about 1mm or so below the lip - should it be more or less flush?

    1. Put a call out here for a Snob who can help you in person.
    Given Ive only made this post on the forums and peoples time is important, I didnt think Id really have an influx of volunteers

    2. Attend a course (hopefully put on by one of the sponsors).
    I would like to do this, just a matter of time and money and decided to ask on the forums here first in case it was something easily fixed. Also, these courses are run on different machines etc. so may still have the problem on my own equipment at home.

    I do understand it is hard to diagnose this stuff on a forum so thankyou everyone for your contribution.

  12. #12
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Where are you located? Im guessing brissie melboune or Adelaide given the Dibella beans.....sorry if I missed it

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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    I live in Algester, Brisbane.

  14. #14
    guv
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    I have a similar grinder and class of machine (mines the breville 800ES) as you.

    I purchased the same krups basket a few months ago and got reasonable results out of it. Needed up up my dose and grind quite a bit compared to the pressurised basket that came with the machine. I ended up with getting a lot of grinds in the cup - there didnt seem to be alot I could do about it , changed grind to more coarse but it still didnt seem to help so I just put up with it. was able to get a good 50 second double shot which tasted pretty good.

    Anyways - the week before last cut a circle out of the lower layer of the pressurised basket (image attached). Made a huge difference - no grinds in the cup, the holes in the krups are too large (well for my grinder they are anyways). coffee is stronger as well as the original basket holds more coffee.




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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Youve done a clean job cutting the hole in that basket.
    What did you use?

  16. #16
    guv
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    Re: help with coffee - grinds in coffee

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    My cousin did it - hes good with stuff like that.

    says he "drilled a series of holes and then used the drill like a die grinder"

    A



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