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There are many variations on how to tamp and each person develops their own personal style to achieve


A basic tamping guide can be accessed on this link


There are a number of tamping methods;

Nutation is one method finding favour amongst some baristas, and involves 'wobbling' the tamper ever so slightly to seal the edges of the puck before compressing

Wikipedia entry for Nutation


Even distribution is an essential pre-requisite for a good tamp

Refer to the Distribution Wiki entry for further details

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I've got both. Both are fine. Convex are supposed to push the grounds outward for a better seal at the edge. In use, you get a more positive feedback from a flat tamper (with regards to pressure and angle or 'flatness'). Ideally try before you buy but if not both will do the job just as well really in my experience. If you ask me, getting one that is a good fit (eg 58.4 rather than 'roughly 58mm') is more important than base profile. Just my 2p worth - I'm not a coffee guru.

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A lot of theory has changed in the past few years yet the process is still largely the same.


The links point to a now retired website.

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I currently use a naked porta-filter, and an attento click tamp mat.

How do you tamp a single porta-filter? when it's resting on the single point of the spout at the bottom (which is off-centre) it must be hard to to get the downward pressure straight? Also, would that pressure on a single point damage the tamp mat?


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three fingers, thumb, forefinger and middle. downward motion with force on forefinger, rather than thumb (as that's where the inclination will be). if you stand on tiptoes and hold the tamper in place then let yourself down holding in place, that's all the force you need.

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