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Thread: Mazzer SJ collar threads - stuck / what to lubricate

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    Mazzer SJ collar threads - stuck / what to lubricate

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    G'day,

    The mazzer SJ was finally in need of a burr replacement which I've done. But I cannot for the life of me get the collar back on without it locking up with a few threads still left to go before the burrs even get close.

    I've cleaned the thread with an old toothbrush and it looks nice and clean on both sides with no obvious damage.

    Am I missing something obvious here? What could I use for lubrication? If I'm careful, can I wipe some silicon lube on it?

    Thoughts?

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    .. And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why you don't mess with the Mazzer

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Inox food grade grease available from Jaycar electronics, use it very sparingly.
    Does the thread wind most of the way down before it binds? If it screwed out ok there should be nothing stopping it from winding back in, other than some debris or a damaged thread.

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reedburg View Post
    .. And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why you don't mess with the Mazzer
    Not so, the Mazzer is a simple machine, if you can screw the lid off a jar of Vegemite you can remove and replace the burr carrier of a Mazzer, just remember it's a LH thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    Inox food grade grease available from Jaycar electronics, use it very sparingly.
    .........so sparingly that you don't actually get ANY grease on the threads. I will NEVER use grease on grinder threads, and new Mazzers that come out of the box with grease on the threads get it carefully wiped off before any beans go in. If you need grease to allow the collar to thread on smoothly, you've damaged or failed to clean the threads. If you've seen the state Mazzers can get in if they are taken out of the box with factory grease on the threads and then used forever without cleaning them out, you'd agree - the grease catches the grounds which form a nice abrasive paste which makes a mess of the grind head (and you end up drinking some of the grease).

    The three things to check are:

    Grounds in the threads (a toothbrush won't do the job, you need either a wire brush to sweep around along the threads, or if that isn't doing the job a sharp pick carefully scraped around the thread grooves right down to the bottom

    A lock screw in the adjuster collar that is stopping the collar rotating before it bottoms out (some Mazzers have them)

    Grounds built up in the holes where the 3 springs that push up on the adjuster collar sit - they can easily fill up with grounds which prevents the springs compressing, so they lock solid before the burrs meet and stop the collar turning.

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MorganGT View Post
    .........so sparingly that you don't actually get ANY grease on the threads. I will NEVER use grease on grinder threads, and new Mazzers that come out of the box with grease on the threads get it carefully wiped off before any beans go in. If you need grease to allow the collar to thread on smoothly, you've damaged or failed to clean the threads. If you've seen the state Mazzers can get in if they are taken out of the box with factory grease on the threads and then used forever without cleaning them out, you'd agree - the grease catches the grounds which form a nice abrasive paste which makes a mess of the grind head (and you end up drinking some of the grease).

    The three things to check are:

    Grounds in the threads (a toothbrush won't do the job, you need either a wire brush to sweep around along the threads, or if that isn't doing the job a sharp pick carefully scraped around the thread grooves right down to the bottom

    A lock screw in the adjuster collar that is stopping the collar rotating before it bottoms out (some Mazzers have them)

    Grounds built up in the holes where the 3 springs that push up on the adjuster collar sit - they can easily fill up with grounds which prevents the springs compressing, so they lock solid before the burrs meet and stop the collar turning.
    Must admit, as I said recently in another thread, have never used grease on my grinders and have never had a problem.

    You say "Coffee grounds and grease form an abrasive paste" wrong, coffee beans (vegetable matter) are much softer than the metal used in burr carriers, even if any stray grounds find their way up there (not very likely) no abrasive action takes place.

    "you need either a wire brush" here you have an abrasive, while I doubt light use of a wire brush would do much harm my preference would be for a stiff bristle synthetic brush.

    "Grounds built up in the holes where the 3 springs that push up on the adjuster collar sit - they can easily fill up with grounds which prevents the springs compressing, so they lock solid before the burrs meet and stop the collar turning."
    I use my grinder a number of times daily and give it a thorough clean every 6 months or so, have never experience more than a small amount of grounds in the spring holders, certainly nothing like the amount that would prevent the springs from compressing though I'm sure it could happen if, as others suggest you never remove the top burr carrier.
    Dragunov21 likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    You say "Coffee grounds and grease form an abrasive paste" wrong, coffee beans (vegetable matter) are much softer than the metal used in burr carriers, even if any stray grounds find their way up there (not very likely) no abrasive action takes place.
    Get some grounds, place them on a metal surface and rub them against the metal with the heel of your thumb - you'll see abrasion marks. Yes, grounds are softer than alloy, but fresh ground particles have lots of sharp edges which, although they individually won't do much, over time the huge quantity of particles rubbing/scraping their way through a grinder can cause amazing amounts of wear. I could show you some surprisingly worn grinder components where the wear is all due to the action of grounds.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    "you need either a wire brush" here you have an abrasive, while I doubt light use of a wire brush would do much harm my preference would be for a stiff bristle synthetic brush.
    A bristle brush is usually ineffective in cleaning grounds stuck in threads. Grounds that work their way into the collar threads sit there absorbing moisture from the air, and 'set' into a solid mass which can't be brushed off - it has to be scraped loose (unless you are cleaning the grinder threads out every day, where the grounds are more likely to still be dry and 'loose').

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    Senior Member CafeLotta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MorganGT View Post
    ....... and new Mazzers that come out of the box with grease on the threads ....
    If the manufacturer puts grease on the threads do you think there might be a message in there somewhere?

    Quote Originally Posted by MorganGT View Post
    If you've seen the state Mazzers can get in if they are taken out of the box with factory grease on the threads and then used forever without cleaning them out, you'd agree
    Removing excess grease out of the box is probably a good idea as is regular maintenance. I would suggest that using H1 Food Grade grease sparingly (wiping off excess) is probably going to do more good than harm if used correctly.

    If you think of how the threads engage, most of the grease will be swept off the burr carrier threads when installing before it bottoms out. The key is not to be heavy handed with grease near the bottom of the threads of the grinder body. If you're still not convinced, screw the carrier in once after lightly greasing, remove it and once again wipe off any excess then reassemble. When removing the burr carrier, any build up will probably be swept off the carrier threads in the bottom couple of threads.

    Dry assembling threads, especially when there's some resistance, exposes them to a serious risk of galling(depending on the metals involved).

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MorganGT View Post
    Get some grounds, place them on a metal surface and rub them against the metal with the heel of your thumb - you'll see abrasion marks.
    Then get your self a 10x hand lens and examine the mark, you will find it's simply a mark (like a chalk mark) not a scratch.

    I'll say it again, coffee grounds will not and cannot scratch most metals, it's simple science, on Moh's scale of hardness Talc is rated at 1 and diamond at 10 with all other materials somewhere in between, ground coffee would be right down at the low end of the scale.

    What all this really means, is that any item on the Mohs Scale list, can scratch any item below it on the Scale. Hence, a Fingernail (2.5) can scratch Plaster of Paris (2 ). A coin (3) can scratch a Pearl (2.5). And platinum 4 can scratch gold 2.5.

    Ground coffee won't scratch aluminium or steel.
    Last edited by Yelta; 13th April 2013 at 11:45 AM.

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    plastic is rated at much more than 1. usually talc is thought of as 1.

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hildy View Post
    plastic is rated at much more than 1. usually talc is thought of as 1.
    Your right Hildy, Mohs is a scale of mineral hardness, plastic does not have a hardness because it is not a mineral, I've corrected my post.

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    Senior Member Vinitasse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    Your right Hildy, Mohs is a scale of mineral hardness, plastic does not have a hardness because it is not a mineral, I've corrected my post.
    Last time I checked, coffee wasn't a mineral either.

    And of course coffee beans/grounds can wear away metals. After all, how do you explain worn burrs???? Coffee will dull that super hard steel in the same way that mere paper can and will dull scissors. One more example that makes this all the more obvious is the sand blaster. A sandblaster, whether it happens to be filled with silica based sand, walnut shells or, indeed, coffee beans will wear away pretty much anything and everything given enough time.

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinitasse View Post

    And of course coffee beans/grounds can wear away metals. After all, how do you explain worn burrs????
    Rocks and stuff in the beans Vinitasse, too many rocks in the beans

    "Walnut shell grit can be used as a soft aggregate in removing foreign matter or coatings from surfaces without etching, scratching or marring cleaned areas"

    Anyhow, as they say, I've made my point, now that were down to splitting hairs I'll bow out.

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    Senior Member Vinitasse's Avatar
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    Ain't no rocks in my beans... ever!... and the burrs on my grinders still wear over time. And there certainly ain't no rocks in the sheets of paper that dull my scissors either. I think I know where the rocks are.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CafeLotta View Post
    If the manufacturer puts grease on the threads do you think there might be a message in there somewhere?
    Yes, the message is often that the manufacturer hasn't spent enough time looking at the real world use of their equipment and what happens to it in the hands of non-technically minded users.
    A lot of manufacturers sell espresso machines with little or no grease on the steam tap threads, and when it is there the amount can vary wildly from tap to tap and machine to machine.Almost never do they put the right amount of the right kind of lubricant in the right spots. Some machines I have seen have completely destroyed their tap threads in 6 months of usage from new out of the box - the same machine will have its taps survive happily for years when we get a chance to 'commission' it prior to use by dismantling and lubing the parts that require it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinitasse View Post
    . And there certainly ain't no rocks in the sheets of paper that dull my scissors either. I think I know where the rocks are.
    while I dont want to get involved engineering discussions on the hardness of coffee beans versus various machine parts. lots of paper is coated with clay and various other minerals so while it may not be obvious there certainly are rocks on paper.

    is this thread helping anybody with coffee related issues?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinitasse View Post
    After all, how do you explain worn burrs???? Coffee will dull that super hard steel in the same way that mere paper can and will dull scissors.
    paper doesn't dull good scissors; good scissors dull because they're adjusted so that the metal cuts against metal.

    the reason that burrs wear is the same reason that soft plastic chopping boards will dull sharp good quality knives - because it's not from scratching, it's from a folding-over of a very finely honed point. ceramic knives don't show this and I wouldn't imagine ceramic burrs would dull in the same way.

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    Senior Member Dragunov21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hildy View Post
    paper doesn't dull good scissors; good scissors dull because they're adjusted so that the metal cuts against metal.

    the reason that burrs wear is the same reason that soft plastic chopping boards will dull sharp good quality knives - because it's not from scratching, it's from a folding-over of a very finely honed point. ceramic knives don't show this and I wouldn't imagine ceramic burrs would dull in the same way.
    Dude, where do you get this stuff? Good scissors dull because the metal cuts against metal? Really?

    And yes, paper will (as far as I'm aware) accelerate blade wear due to abrasive compounds used to process it (what don said).

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    Senior Member Barry O'Speedwagon's Avatar
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    I think what Hildy is suggesting is that if you use scissors to cut 'nothing' (i.e. open and close them repeatedly) that each blade will wear down the other. This of course, doesn't imply that paper will not also wear down the blades. I can't help but think of a sketch on the Late Show along the lines of "Not the Good Scissors!".......

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    Senior Member greenman's Avatar
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    just noticed this thread, I recently cleaned the burrs on my SJ and could not get it to seat properly even though I thought the threads were clean and free of any residue. I took it to Dimattina in Osborne Park where I purchased it and the techies soon sorted me out, using a small wire brush and a quick clean of the threads and we were back in action.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hildy View Post
    the reason that burrs wear is the same reason that soft plastic chopping boards will dull sharp good quality knives - because it's not from scratching, it's from a folding-over of a very finely honed point. ceramic knives don't show this and I wouldn't imagine ceramic burrs would dull in the same way.
    Ceramic burrs wear the same way as metal burrs do - the sharp machined tips of the burrs are worn away and flattened, which is why worn metal burrs are visible from the shiny polished edges (new burrs aren't shiny at the edges as there is no 'surface' on the points to reflect light. Ceramic burrs wear the same way but just take a lot longer, unless you are unlucky to get a stone or bolt in them, which can make them shatter - not nice, since they tend to cost a lot more.

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    Having owned Supper Jolly and Major for many years I always put some Dow111 on the threads before installing.The threads of Mazzer are very very tight.Without grease it's almost impossible to get smoot action from the adjustment system.
    Quamar(Fio) on the contrary has lots of play between the threads and I always installed that without any lubricant.
    But Mazzers...always some dow on there.And take care to turn it in carefully No force .The first couple of windings must turn very lightly.Don't destroy the threads!



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