so I'm sure this is a very stupid question, I'm hoping someone will take pity on me. I just bought a new Rancilio Silvia. However, I am having trouble getting the portafilter in. Without coffee I have no problems, but once I fill it with ground coffee, scrape off the excess and tamp, no luck. I'm not a totally idiot, so if I take some and re-tamp, I do arrive at a point where I can sort of get it in. The thing is all the videos on the internet showing people filling the portfilter with an excess of coffee, scrapping it level and then press it, so I'm fairly sure I'm following what the videos show.
Can anyone please advise, many thanks!
Use less coffee. When the grounds are tamped down into the basket they should just barely not touch the grouphead screen when the portafilter is locked into place. A 5 cent piece (Australian) placed on top of the tamped grounds should leave a light impression in them after being locked into the grouphead.
Java "Lock 'n Load!" phile
Toys! I must have new toys!!!
What Java said and also stick to the double shot basket until you get the hang of it, they're much more forgiving.
Thanks...OK I will try the double shot. I think why I'm asking is that when I watch the videos they grind an excess, scrape it level and then tamp. I swear I'm doing the same thing so don't see why I have "too much" coffee. I realise I clearly do...but I don't see where I'm going wrong.
+1 to the above points, but also remember that how coarse your grind is will also greatly impact how far your coffee will compress.
If you're used to a different machine that only handles coarse grinds (many consumer machines choke with the grind a commercial machine uses - what machine have you come from?) and you're still grinding on those settings for the new Silvia, you will likely be overfilling the basket with non-compressible grounds. From my (minimal) Silvia experience, it should handle a traditional espresso grind no worries which are quite 'soft' and compressible (hence the overfill/scrape success of the videos).
Maybe try grinding finer - you'll be surprised what a Silvia can handle
Enjoy the journey!
Thanks again for all the help. So I had a crack at the double holder and trying to put a bit less in. That seems to have worked as now the head is fitting easily enough and I managed to get something that tastes not bad. Frankly, from this morning when I couldn't even get the head in this is progress!
@DesigningByCoffee this is my first proper machine, so no real experience, can you tell :P. I have the rocky grinder...so I guess I'm trying to find the right setting. I think I was somewhere around the 10 mark. The last shot that tasted OK was a little fast so may need a finer grind I guess.