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Thread: Can't reach 1:2 brew ratio before blonding

  1. #1
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    Can't reach 1:2 brew ratio before blonding

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi guys, hoping for a little help/advice.

    I've been loading 18-19 grams into my VST basket and have been trying to aim for an1:2 brew ratio.

    I find I'm barely hitting a 1:1 ratio before the coffee starts to blonde and go thin. Sometimes I can't even yield my 18-19 grams before it goes blonde and watery.

    I find at a 1:1 ratio the coffee is delicious and I'm more than happy with the overall flavour, I guess I'm just wondering why I'm struggling to get to a double shot ratio.

    I am using di Bella Modena blend which is a medium-sized blend. To my knowledge, the darker the blend, the more soluble the coffee is, but struggling to yield a 1:1 ratio seems a bit strange.
    I always use beans between 1 and 2 weeks old.
    The pour takes 6-8 seconds to start pouring, starts pouring slowly with a viscous 'mouse tail' flow and continues to quicken as it should.
    Everything seems right, except for the fact that I can't reach a 1:2 ratio.

    As I said, it tastes great, but am more curious as to why this is happening.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    What is the total elapsed time when you hit the 1:1 point?

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    22-25 seconds

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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    Ok. So you’d be able to reach about 1:1.5 or slightly more in around 30secs I’m guessing. I think you should try doing this and see what the coffee is like. I would ignore the ‘blonding’ point as it’s incredibly subjective and can be different from coffee to coffee.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jackster's Avatar
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    Back the grinder off slightly to allow a little more water through

  6. #6
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    What machine are you using?

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    I have tried running it longer (30-35 seconds) as well as trying a courser grind to get to a 1:2 brew ratio but I find the taste of the coffee diminishes. It becomes quite weak and bitter.

    Perhaps it's just this bean?

    Rocket r58.

  8. #8
    Senior Member flynnaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Esky View Post
    I have tried running it longer (30-35 seconds) as well as trying a courser grind to get to a 1:2 brew ratio but I find the taste of the coffee diminishes. It becomes quite weak and bitter.

    Perhaps it's just this bean?

    Rocket r58.
    Have you have been able to get good coffee on your R58 with other beans?
    What grinder are you using?

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    I just changed my scales to another set and now it tells me I'm where I need to be haha.

    I looked at the espresso and thought, "that's a lot more than 12 grams!" And after a change of scales, it registered at 38 grams. It seems my good scales have broken..
    The good news is, I don't need to adjust anything haha.

    Thanks anyway guys!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Esky View Post
    I just changed my scales to another set and now it tells me I'm where I need to be haha.

    I looked at the espresso and thought, "that's a lot more than 12 grams!" And after a change of scales, it registered at 38 grams. It seems my good scales have broken..
    The good news is, I don't need to adjust anything haha.

    Thanks anyway guys!
    New batteries?

    I've seen electronic scales do weird things even though there was no low battery warning.

  11. #11
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    Yeah I'm planning to try new batteries, although I'm getting the vibe the plate is sticking. We shall see.

  12. #12
    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    Aha! It pays to keep a calibrating weight handy to check your scales periodically. Doesn’t have to be anything flash, just a river pebble will do the job. Calibrate your scales to zero then weigh the pebble/weight and write the weight on it. Done.
    bigdaddy likes this.

  13. #13
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    I dial in by brew ratio all the time. Like you I use about 19gms in a 18gm VST basket. I run my shot until I get about 38 to 40 gms and if it happens in 25 to 30 seconds then I've got my 1:2 ratio. If its too quick tighten the grind otherwise make it coarser. I ignore any blonding. I then make small changes based on taste but 1:2 seems like a good way to start. Works for me.
    bigdaddy likes this.

  14. #14
    Super Moderator Javaphile's Avatar
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    Coins are a great way to calibrate your scale. Use newly(ish) minted ones looking up their weight online.


    Java "Standard what?" phile
    flynnaus and bigdaddy like this.
    Toys! I must have new toys!!!

  15. #15
    Senior Member flynnaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Javaphile View Post
    Coins are a great way to calibrate your scale. Use newly(ish) minted ones looking up their weight
    Great idea.
    See reference table halfway down the page at
    Counting Australian Coins for the bank. | Michael Kubler


  16. #16
    Senior Member Barry O'Speedwagon's Avatar
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    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Quote Originally Posted by Javaphile View Post
    Coins are a great way to calibrate your scale. Use newly(ish) minted ones looking up their weight online.


    Java "Standard what?" phile
    Yep, I had to do this after accidentally recalibrating (to a ridiculous level) the scales I use in my office.



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