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Thread: Decent espresso

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    Interesting what you have to say about grinders John and it gives the impression you tell it straight given the one you sell isn't on the list. Of all the grinders out there the only ones that intrigue me over what I already have are the Lynweber and the other similar one available with a choice of flat and conical burrs which has been mentioned on here of which I forget the name. Have you tried those by any chance?
    Ambient Vesuvius, Probat EK43 & Feldgind

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    Monolith @dan1502
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan1502 View Post
    Interesting what you have to say about grinders John and it gives the impression you tell it straight given the one you sell isn't on the list.
    The one we sell is the least expensive grinder I could find that doesn't suck. Our grinder performs similarly on the DE1+ to the Robur, once you remove the Robur's anti-static bars that cause clumping. However, our grinder is significantly slower than the Robur, taking about 20s to grind 16g. Not sure, but I think the Robur might be 2x as fast as that.

    I group grinders into these categories of increasing quality:
    1) those that can't make a good shot no matter what you do
    2) those that make a fairly good shot if you grind into a vessel, whisk the grounds to remove clumping and then dose
    3) those that make a fairly good shot if you grind into a vessel, shake the vessel a bit and then dose
    4) those that make a fairly good shot if you dose directly into a portafilter
    5) those that give you absolutely straight pressure curves, even when you dose into a portafilter
    6) those that give you perfect shots, dosed into a portafilter, and the grounds are warmed
    7) those that take less than 30 seconds to prep a shot
    8) those that don't break

    By "fairly good shot" I mean that objectively, the pressure rises fairly smoothly on the DE1+, with only small losses of pressure that last less than 1s. Except for Baratza, and Orphan Espresso's hand grinder, I haven't seen anything under USD$500 that doesn't have really wobbly pressure curves. There was one other manual grinder someone brought to a demo, I forget the name, that also did well.

    In my month of trying grinders, here's what I found:
    - the Mythos is the only grinder at #8
    - the EK would be at #7 but it takes too long to prep a shot
    - the Peak is really fantastic, but it overheats, or breaks, or something, when in production. If they get it to be reliable, it will be at #8.
    - the Robur, if you leave the built-in static shield, is at #2. Without the shield, it is at #4.
    - the Sette is at #4, and is smaller and less expensive than our grinder, and is my recommendation for Decent Espresso buyers looking for a home grinder. The weighed dosing worked to within 0.2g for me, which is impressive.
    - the grinder we sell is at #4, but is pro oriented, rather than home oriented like the Sette is.
    - the unseasoned EG-1 was at #3, seasoned it is now at #4. Their manual in fact states that most grinders benefit from dosing into an intermediate container, a statement with which I agree.

    Note that stages #3 and #4 are very close to each other, with only a whisk (or wdt) to differentiate them. The difference is basically "are you removing clumps" or are you just "evenly distributing the grind particle size"

    Quote Originally Posted by dan1502 View Post
    Of all the grinders out there the only ones that intrigue me over what I already have are the Lynweber and the other similar one available with a choice of flat and conical burrs which has been mentioned on here of which I forget the name. Have you tried those by any chance?
    Yes, I own an EG-1 and have been touring with it. It makes terrible coffee until (a) you season it with 5lbs of coffee and (b) lower the RPM to 600-800.

    Then it makes extremely acceptable espresso. Craig Lyn gave me GREAT tech support to set me straight but I've talked to other EG-1 owners who have given up w/o seasoning properly, which is a shame. I think this is only a communication issue on LW's part, because once seasoned, it's a very nice grinder. On the EG-1, I still see a bit of channeling (visible on the DE1+ curves) on pressure rise, between 2 and 5 bar, which I'm told might be fines migration. The EG-1 doesn't have any trouble holding a straight pressure curve once peak pressure is hit and held.

    The Peak, EK and Mythos are the only grinders I've seen with perfect curves. Using a refractometer, the highest extraction I've obtained on the EG-1 is 19.3%.

    Mind you, things I love about the EG-1:
    - low retention
    - it's very quiet
    - it makes really good espresso, just not as good as the Peak, EK or Mythos. It's definitely in the camp right below those, however. I hope people see that as a not unfair thing for me to say, as those other 3 grinders are the very top in the industry.
    - I haven't yet experimented with different RPMs to see what effect that has on drink quality. I might get fewer fines at a lower RPM, for instance.
    - it's beautiful

    -john
    Last edited by decent_espresso; 10-12-16 at 10:32.

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    Thanks for the comprehensive answer. As well as being able to achieve extraction yields of 24% or perhaps more with the EK it is the ability to single dose I like about it although I have noticed that there is still quite a difference between the first shot and subsuent shots which suggests to me that some of the retained grounds might be getting into the first shot of the day (I need to look into this further). It is a big beast though. Although I'm unlikely to move away from the EK had the EG-1 or something similar achieved quivalent results and if money were no object I would be tempted due to the very low retention, size and looks. Out of interest have you tried an Anfim Super Caimano (with Ti burrs)? I sold mine when I got the EK but they're supposed to come close and perhaps be better than ther robur in terms of grind size spread.
    Ambient Vesuvius, Probat EK43 & Feldgind

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    have been reading with interest the points on grinders.

    the mythos has had lots of comments elsewhere about the negative effects of heating the beans, and there's a few articles on the good effects of cooling beans too, how come this is such a positive?

    not sure I understand the trade off between negative heating effects v positive effects of quicker time for the group head to hit the right temp.

    surely it depends on how long the beans have been at a warmer temp as they will loose volatiles?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phobic View Post
    the mythos has had lots of comments elsewhere about the negative effects of heating the beans, and there's a few articles on the good effects of cooling beans too, how come this is such a positive?
    I am unqualified to answer this question, but since Roast Magazine put me on the spot and asked me this same question, I will give you same ill informed answer I gave them.

    This idea of cooling the grounds seems to be have been recently popularized by Berg Wu of Taiwan, who won the 2016 world barista championship.

    My position is that heating ground beans for a while is a very bad thing. If I lock in my portafilter in and don't pull a shot for 15 minutes, my experience is that it will pull fast.

    However, I also feel that having the water temperature not drop by 6ºC to 8ºC when the shot starts, would be a good thing, and with the Mythos the temperature drop is only around 2ºC to 1ºC, as measured on the DE1+, vs shots using unheated grinders.

    And so, my feeling is that if you dose with the Mythos and work quickly to pull the shot shortly afterwards, you avoid the negatives of heating the grounds for too long, while having more temperature stability in the shot. Seems like the best of both worlds.

    Another issue with bean heating is variability. The problem is that some grinders warm up as they work, and so produce grounds at different temperatures. The Mythos is very consistent (being fan cooled) so once the shot is dialed it, it works well for a while.

    Others are more qualified to pursue this thread, however, so I'm not sure I will opine more on this topic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dan1502 View Post
    Out of interest have you tried an Anfim Super Caimano (with Ti burrs)? I sold mine when I got the EK but they're supposed to come close and perhaps be better than ther robur in terms of grind size spread.
    Weird, that's actually the grinder right in front of me! I just ground a 15g dose for you to take a look at. Check out the terrible clumping. These exact same beans grind unclumpy on my EG-1. Hmm... going to go see if the chute is clogged....

    IMG_5475.jpg

    ok, after rummaging through the house to find the right allen key as ANFIM has rather unhelpfully decided to make the grounds chute fitted with hex key bolts, I've now cleaned out the chute and the grind quality is better, but still not super impressive. The EG-1, with exactly these same beans, had no clumping, at the same dose-per-shot (16g).

    For me, the titanium burr ANFIM super caimano falls into the #3 category of grinders (makes a good coffee if you whisk the grounds).
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    You seem to be making a correlation between clumps and bad grind... Is this fair? I love to see fluffy as much as the next guy, but I'm genuinely not sure whether clumps matter and have never seen anything definitive on it

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    Anfim should only ever be dosered then they are clump free.
    Didi matloba

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    Quote Originally Posted by coffeechap View Post
    Anfim should only ever be dosered then they are clump free.
    I'm sure you're right, as ANFIMs are usually found with a dosing chamber, and I'm sure that removes the clumps. However, I wanted to grind on demand and also weigh my dose as I grind, so bought the doserless version, which seems to have this clumping issue for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by fluffles View Post
    You seem to be making a correlation between clumps and bad grind... Is this fair? I love to see fluffy as much as the next guy, but I'm genuinely not sure whether clumps matter and have never seen anything definitive on it
    Again, let me reiterate that (a) I'm not an expert on grinding, and (b) I'm not trying to convince anyone that I'm right, or win an argument. I merely expressed my opinion since I was asked for it.

    As far as clumps go, my problem with them is:
    1) they make it difficult to create an even bed
    2) with extreme clumping (ie, Robur) after tamping I can see fissures in the bed, and that can't be good. Mostly, this isn't the case on my Super Caimano, probably because the clumping is not as severe as on the Robur.
    3) if I grind into something else (a 650ml milk jug), and WDT or whisk the grinds and then dose into the pf, I get a superior shot on the Caimano.

    If you disagree, no problem.

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