Results 1 to 20 of 20

Thread: PID and silky microfoam

  1. #1
    Senior Member greenman's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    3,156

    PID and silky microfoam

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I have just installed a PID with steam control on my Silvia and cant get over the improvement in the quality of the textured milk. Creamy and silky and Im actually starting to produce some recognisable artwork.
    This is an added bonus to the consistently good espresso shots I am now pulling!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    1,687

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Good stuff Gman, got some pics? (of the machine/PID & the results!)

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    36

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    so, excuse my ignorance, but can i get a PID for my gaggia classic? if so where from and can i install it without a professional?

  4. #4
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Warwick, QLD
    Posts
    16,693

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 5E44530A0C050D3D0 link=1221277436/2#2 date=1236855031
    so, excuse my ignorance, but can i get a PID for my gaggia classic? if so where from and can i install it without a professional?
    Gday "cyn7180"....

    Why not contact Jim at PID Kits (Site Sponsor over on the left) and ask his opinion. Even though he mostly works with Silvia Kits, Im sure he would be able to give you some good advice on where to start... :)

    Cheers,
    Mal.

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    36

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    hey thanks Mal, tip much appreciated. Judging on the threads ive looked at this weekend with their pictures of wires everywhere i think Ill leave the installation to a professional! :o

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    39

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Just a newbie question here which Ive been wondering a bit lately, does a PID help with producing steam? I always find it annoying that I have to use my steamer before the light goes off (on my silvia) and was hoping through having a PID I could avoid this?

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    466

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Providing it is a dual set point PID it can help keep the boiler hotter while steaming. However with a single set point you can see the boiler temperature and know when to start steaming so as to just keep the light on during the whole process.

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    60

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 544E5900060F07370 link=1221277436/2#2 date=1236855031
    so, excuse my ignorance, but can i get a PID for my gaggia classic? if so where from and can i install it without a professional?
    Hi cyn7180...I built one for my Classic recently

    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1238569278

    It is not something I would recommend to someone with no electrical knowledge..do you have experience in electrical stuff or have any friends who are electricians?..if so, and they are happy to help...it will be very straight forward and easily reversible as the install needs no cutting/splicing etc...parts are easily obtained too and isnt too expensive...

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    59

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 0A2635332E262B180A28292C223E470 link=1221277436/6#6 date=1239966120
    Providing it is a dual set point PID it can help keep the boiler hotter while steaming.
    Actually, if your PID has a high/low alarm output, you can use that for steam temperature control with a few extra parts:
    http://www.skenedesign.com/Silvia/

    Been thinking about this... Can then use the power supply to feed 2-3 LEDs to light the work area too!

    RJ

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    60

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 36313136202E252A440 link=1221277436/8#8 date=1240094212
    Quote Originally Posted by 0A2635332E262B180A28292C223E470 link=1221277436/6#6 date=1239966120
    Providing it is a dual set point PID it can help keep the boiler hotter while steaming.
    Actually, if your PID has a high/low alarm output, you can use that for steam temperature control with a few extra parts:
    http://www.skenedesign.com/Silvia/

    Been thinking about this... Can then use the power supply to feed 2-3 LEDs to light the work area too!

    RJ
    I have seen this too and have looked at the circuit & wiring diagrams for the Gaggia Classic, but I am not sure if this could be done without the ac/dc supply being on the whole time? This is due to the fact that current is always flowing through the steam thermostat unless it opens due to temperature (even when brewing)...maybe a diode to prevent current to the dc supply when the steam switch is open? is this correct?

  11. #11
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    59

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 49626F7F6D6A7E650B0 link=1221277436/9#9 date=1240108383
    I have seen this too and have looked at the circuit & wiring diagrams for the Gaggia Classic, but I am not sure if this could be done without the ac/dc supply being on the whole time? This is due to the fact that current is always flowing through the steam thermostat unless it opens due to temperature (even when brewing)...maybe a diode to prevent current to the dc supply when the steam switch is open? is this correct?
    Looking at http://www.partsguru.com/user/ClassicCoffee_V120_Sae0298_Rev00.pdf
    and this one http://newsgroups.derkeiler.com/pdf/Archive/Alt/alt.coffee/2008-03/msg00026.pdf
    (or the original: http://groups.google.com.au/group/alt.coffee/browse_thread/thread/64539f8088fbfc06/057fcf9866509994?hl=en&lnk=gst&q=gaggia+pid+steam+ control#057fcf9866509994 , havent read it all yet...)

    Strange. The link above states disconnect the blue wire from both the steam and brew thermostat. The steam one doesnt have a blue wire (blue is live +120v, and the steam thermos is in series with the brew thermos, so no on live...).
    Agree that the way he wires it, the ac/dc is always on. Not sure if thats a big deal though (he uses a cellphone charger, which is used to be always on I guess...). However, if you put the ac/dc source on the gray wire taken from the steam thermo, it would only be on when the steam switch is on, according to the wiring diagram.
    By the way, shouldnt you be able to get that dc from inside the PID somewhere?

    The disadvantage I can see is that while brewing the PID will be continuously in alarm mode.
    "The PID is set up such that the High alarm trip point is set to 295░ F and the Low alarm trip point is set to 296░ F. This causes the alarm output to turn OFF when the temperature climbs higher than 296░ F, and to turn ON when it drops below 295░ F."

    That might be a bother if the PID somehow notifies you of the alarm (I think the display flashes). Not sure if you can turn that off. I dont have a PID (yet...), so its all theory.

    RJ

  12. #12
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Warwick, QLD
    Posts
    16,693

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    You know....

    You dont need to any of this. Its as simple as shorting out the Steam T/stat and then use the PID Controller to control the boiler at what ever temperature you want. Just move the Setpoint from what ever you have the Brew Temp set at up to about 125C. When youre finished, move the Setpoint back down to the Brew Temp Setpoint.... Easy as, and takes but seconds to do 8-)

    Mal.

  13. #13
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    60

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 05282C202D410 link=1221277436/11#11 date=1240142803
    You know....

    You dont need to any of this. Its as simple as shorting out the Steam T/stat and then use the PID Controller to control the boiler at what ever temperature you want. Just move the Setpoint from what ever you have the Brew Temp set at up to about 125C. When youre finished, move the Setpoint back down to the Brew Temp Setpoint.... Easy as, and takes but seconds to do 8-)

    Mal.
    Ive thought about this too Mal...I guess some people just love to tinker and modify stuff because they can :D

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Newcastle, NSW
    Posts
    126

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Hi Mal,

    I like your idea and am a bit embarrassed to not have thought about it earlier... The Steam T/Stat cuts off at about 145C on my machine. Thus, I guess that there is no need to shorten it, or is the overshoot that much?

    Is 125C a good temperature setpoint for steaming or should it be a bit higher?

    Thanks

    Daniel




  15. #15
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    59

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Are there PIDs that allow you to switch between setpoints based on an external signal? Would be nice to hook that up to the steam switch.

    Anyone got a databook for PIDs?

    And yes, Im a tinkerer (Electrical Engineer by trade...), so Id like a shot timer implemented too if I can *8-)

    RJ

  16. #16
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Warwick, QLD
    Posts
    16,693

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 43464956270 link=1221277436/13#13 date=1240181007
    Hi Mal,

    I like your idea and am a bit embarrassed to not have thought about it earlier... The Steam T/Stat cuts off at about 145C on my machine. Thus, I guess that there is no need to shorten it, or is the overshoot that much?

    Is 125C a good temperature setpoint for steaming or should it be a bit higher?

    Thanks

    Daniel
    Gday Daniel :)

    Yep, 125C is about perfect from my own experience. Thermostats have a much wider dead-band and therefore are usually selected at a higher nominal temperature so as to avoid the Low cut-in temperature occurring at too low a temperature and therefore affecting the availability of hot, dry steam.

    The PID Controller (if set up properly) will try and hold the Boiler Temp to the setpoint regardless of how much steam you use. Never forget though, Dual Purpose Single Boiler machines are not Steam Demons, they will eventually run the Boiler water level too low and expose the element. You should probably limit each texturing session to a max of 500ml or so and then refill the Boiler before the next session.

    125C is the temperature (mean) for most commercial and prosumer machines and the reason why I initially started at this number. Steam output was so good that I never found any need to change it.... 8-)

    Mal.

  17. #17
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Warwick, QLD
    Posts
    16,693

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 4C4B4B4C5A545F503E0 link=1221277436/14#14 date=1240212268
    Are there PIDs that allow you to switch between setpoints based on an external signal? Would be nice to hook that up to the steam switch.

    Anyone got a databook for PIDs?

    And yes, Im a tinkerer (Electrical Engineer by trade...), so Id like a shot timer implemented too if I can *8-)

    RJ
    Gday RJ,

    Another electrical engineer to the fold, good to see ;).

    Yep, you can obtain Dual Setpoint PID Controllers (and more). Jim from PID Kits has such a model on offer in one of the Kit variations he has on offer. You can buy them from any decent Instrumentation supplier in Oz too but theyre not cheap unfortunately. Id give Jim a buzz and talk to him about possible options.... 8-)

    Cheers :)
    Mal.

  18. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Newcastle, NSW
    Posts
    126

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Thanks Mal,

    I believe that the steam-switch overrides whatever the PID tells the heating element to do. Thus, if I do not shorten the steam Thermostat, then will I get steam out of the wand by setting the temperature at 125C and turning on the hot water function?

    Or do I have to shorten the steam T/Stat?

    :)

    Daniel

  19. #19
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Warwick, QLD
    Posts
    16,693

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Quote Originally Posted by 3A3F302F5E0 link=1221277436/17#17 date=1240267638
    Or do I have to shorten the steam T/Stat?
    Gday Daniel,

    Yes you do mate but it is extremely easy to do but if youre not au fait with "apparatus electricus", then please see if you can encourage a local qualified person to do it for you in exchange for some great coffee. You are playing with 240V AC when working under the bonnet of these machines so safety is paramount.... NEVER attempt to remove any covers unless the machine has been switched OFF and the plug removed from the wall socket.

    Because most machines use either 4.5 or 6.4mm Spade Connectors in their wiring, visit your local DSE or Jaycar store and ask them for a Single Spade Connector, such as these stocked at Jaycar... http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView...g&form=KEYWORD . This will allow you to simply disconnect the wiring from the Steam T/stat and then join the removed wiring together using these and very easily reversible. If you also grab some suitable Heatshrink tubing while youre there, you can then insulate the new joint by shrinking a couple of layers of this over the entire length. If you have any qualms though, please get someone who is qualified to do this for you.

    Hope this helps you out Daniel... :)

    Mal.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Newcastle, NSW
    Posts
    126

    Re: PID and silky microfoam

    Thank you Mal,

    This may become a weekend project soon.

    Daniel



Similar Threads

  1. Microfoam and Microcimbali
    By johnszymanski in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 24th December 2010, 07:53 PM
  2. YES I HAVE MICROFOAM!!!
    By greenman in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 27th September 2007, 05:31 PM
  3. MIcrofoam with Silvia
    By greenman in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 6th September 2007, 05:33 PM
  4. Microfoam potential?
    By omote in forum Milk Froth and Bubbles
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 4th September 2007, 10:44 PM
  5. Silvia Microfoam
    By dumiya in forum Brewing Equipment - Midrange ($500-$1500)
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 25th February 2007, 11:55 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •