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Just wanted to give a bit of feedback after a few weeks with a DE1 at home. Some background: I'm coming from a very reliable Lelit Bianca, but was looking for improvement in some areas, not necessarily related to coffe cup quality.
When I bought the Bianca 2 years ago, I almost bought the Decent instead, but I thought there was not enough feedback for me to take the plunge, while the Bianca was using tried and tested E61 with a few key innovations.
What I was looking to gain by switching to the Decent were:
- Smaller footprint: definitely gained there, just need to look at the size charts of both machines to understand why. Even with the moveable tank on the Bianca, the DE1 remains smaller.
- Quick heat up: I don't drink loads of coffee, usually one or two in the morning, and sometimes I'll have the impulse to have another one later in the day. Letting the machine run most of the day on the off chance I might need it seemed a bit wasteful. But waiting 15-20 mins for it to be fully ready to play with was sometimes not convenient. The DE1 will heat up in a couple of minutes, although it seems it benefits from being kept heated up for slightly longer so that the whole group and portafilter are warm. But in any case, it's ready very very quickly. Kind of exceeded my expectations in that respect.
- Repeatable profiling: of course the Bianca does flow profiling thanks to the neat paddle installed above the group, but even if/when you  know what to do with it, you have to be there and manipulate it and hope to be doing the exact same thing time after time. The DE1 allows to do that in a fully repeatable fashion, and adds pressure and temp profiling as well. The repeatability of this machine can't be overstated enough: given your puck has been consistently prepared, you know exactly what you're going to get shot after shot, and that's fully hands free. I don't have a bluetooth scale so can't use the "stop on weight" function, but I find that for standard espresso I can quite easily rely on the flow-based stopping mechanism. I usually end up within a gram of expectations, so nothing that will significantly affect the ratio.
- Quantified feedback: of course, taste is the only valid criterion when it comes to espresso. However, having access to the data allows you to better understand what might have led to a tastier (or worse) shot, so that you know what to look for or adjust next time. Maybe this is less of a problem for very skilled baristas that can fully operate by feel because they know their coffee and machine inside out, but still, I think this opens new doors.
What I was afraid of:
- Steaming: I don't have milk drinks often, but my partner likes a flat white and she'll have them several times a week. The steam wand is definitely not as nice to use as the one on the Bianca, but still does the job. However, although it might be slightly slower, I have been able to get at least as good steamed milk as on the Bianca very easily.
- Noise: the Bianca has a nice and quiet rotary pump, while the DE1 uses vibration pumps that generate clicking sounds. I must say that most videos you see of the DE1 will tend to overstate the loudness of those pumps. So on the one hand you have the pleasant hum of a rotary pump, and on the other hand the sputtering moped engine sound of the DE1. For me I'd give a slight advantage to the Bianca on that front, but I actually grew fonder of the DE1 noise, and think I actually enjoy hearing it now! Interestingly, my partner said she preferred the sound of the DE1 from the start.
Of course the final verdict is about espresso quality. Maybe it's the honeymoon phase, but I would say the DE1 is superior to the Bianca in that respect. The Bianca can probably do 90% of what the DE1 does in terms of taste, but I believe the key really lies in the programmability of the Decent machines. I have read feedback here and elsewhere about "sour" taste, and thin shots on the DE1. This is not my experience. I even tried the "Italian espresso" profile and it was going too far on the opposite side of the spectrum (maybe because the 94C temperature from this profile is too high, as it refers to group temp, but I digress). I have been able to extract shots that are as syrupy as from the Bianca. I haven't had the courage to set them up side by side and do a direct comparison, but I'm fairly confident in my observations.
Flow/pressure charts also help with the dialing in once you know what to look for, so that's potentially less precious coffee wasted too!
Feedbacks about the machine being much less forgiving than an E61 are definitely true, but not on all type of profiles. The default one or the "gentle and sweet" profiles for example are fairly easy to use without having channeling or spraying everywhere. I found that a homemade distributor tool with four 0.4mm needles in a wine cork indeed work wonders in terms of improving puck consistency, and all of that for a few quids.
I'd say the DE1 is probably overkill for most people. However it's a fantastic thing to play with that delivers consistently excellent coffee and which is already leading to new ideas about espresso making improvement thanks to the data it's generating and its community of dedicated users. Some might argue that there is nothing wrong with espresso from traditional machines, and hence nothing to improve in the first place, but that's another debate. It is probably more geared toward people who enjoy lighter roasts, with which profiling really shines.
The only think I'm not too fond of with this machine are the steam wand, the fact that it often generates wet pucks which are messier to knock out of the portafilter and clean (not a big deal, and could be solved with a spacer) and the price (and I bought mine with a discount...). Oh and the fact that I have too low a caffeine tolerance to spend all day to experiment with it

Great review, thanks.

Did you order any accessories with the Decent?

I’m about to order and interested to know whether to add anything else at the same time...
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One more thing -- what kills companies most often is money.  So, let me address that separately: We've only ever been self-funded, with money from me, my girlfriend and her mum. As of Januar

The serviceability question is totally fair, and I've tried to reassure people as much as I can, with a set of decision. How do I get parts?  All our parts are available to anyone, not just autho

I was a bit upset today, when I went to pick up our mail at our PO box. Of 7 packages received, 6 were product returns.  We rarely get returns, maybe 1 a month.  WTF?FYI : we're going through logistic

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2 hours ago, shaunlawler said:


Great review, thanks.

Did you order any accessories with the Decent?

I’m about to order and interested to know whether to add anything else at the same time...

No, didn't get any accessory, as I more or less have everything I need already. Was tempted by the pour over filter but I'm not THAT lazy after all, and I actually enjoy the pour over ritual.

Just one thing to keep in mind: you might not get the accessories at the same time as the machine. As the latter is shipped in a custom-made suitcase, accessories ship separately.

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The accessories that I have are the Bluetooth Skale2 and the drip tray and adaptor that works with it. Turns the whole drip tray into a scale that links to the app meaning stop at weight works like a dream. Also use the steam by weight function on the DSX skin. You set the weight for each of your jugs, then weigh the milk you are going to steam and time how long it takes to get to the temp you like. Enter these details as the default. Then just fill your jug, rest on the tray/scale press the button and it sets the steam time based on qty of milk. Very accurate and you end up at the same temp every time regardless of qty. 

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8 hours ago, olivier said:

Just wanted to give a bit of feedback after a few weeks with a DE1 at home. Some background: I'm coming from a very reliable Lelit Bianca, but was looking for improvement in some areas, not necessarily related to coffe cup quality.

When I bought the Bianca 2 years ago, I almost bought the Decent instead, but I thought there was not enough feedback for me to take the plunge, while the Bianca was using tried and tested E61 with a few key innovations.

What I was looking to gain by switching to the Decent were:
- Smaller footprint: definitely gained there, just need to look at the size charts of both machines to understand why. Even with the moveable tank on the Bianca, the DE1 remains smaller.

- Quick heat up: I don't drink loads of coffee, usually one or two in the morning, and sometimes I'll have the impulse to have another one later in the day. Letting the machine run most of the day on the off chance I might need it seemed a bit wasteful. But waiting 15-20 mins for it to be fully ready to play with was sometimes not convenient. The DE1 will heat up in a couple of minutes, although it seems it benefits from being kept heated up for slightly longer so that the whole group and portafilter are warm. But in any case, it's ready very very quickly. Kind of exceeded my expectations in that respect.

- Repeatable profiling: of course the Bianca does flow profiling thanks to the neat paddle installed above the group, but even if/when you  know what to do with it, you have to be there and manipulate it and hope to be doing the exact same thing time after time. The DE1 allows to do that in a fully repeatable fashion, and adds pressure and temp profiling as well. The repeatability of this machine can't be overstated enough: given your puck has been consistently prepared, you know exactly what you're going to get shot after shot, and that's fully hands free. I don't have a bluetooth scale so can't use the "stop on weight" function, but I find that for standard espresso I can quite easily rely on the flow-based stopping mechanism. I usually end up within a gram of expectations, so nothing that will significantly affect the ratio.

- Quantified feedback: of course, taste is the only valid criterion when it comes to espresso. However, having access to the data allows you to better understand what might have led to a tastier (or worse) shot, so that you know what to look for or adjust next time. Maybe this is less of a problem for very skilled baristas that can fully operate by feel because they know their coffee and machine inside out, but still, I think this opens new doors.

What I was afraid of:

- Steaming: I don't have milk drinks often, but my partner likes a flat white and she'll have them several times a week. The steam wand is definitely not as nice to use as the one on the Bianca, but still does the job. However, although it might be slightly slower, I have been able to get at least as good steamed milk as on the Bianca very easily.

- Noise: the Bianca has a nice and quiet rotary pump, while the DE1 uses vibration pumps that generate clicking sounds. I must say that most videos you see of the DE1 will tend to overstate the loudness of those pumps. So on the one hand you have the pleasant hum of a rotary pump, and on the other hand the sputtering moped engine sound of the DE1. For me I'd give a slight advantage to the Bianca on that front, but I actually grew fonder of the DE1 noise, and think I actually enjoy hearing it now! Interestingly, my partner said she preferred the sound of the DE1 from the start.

Of course the final verdict is about espresso quality. Maybe it's the honeymoon phase, but I would say the DE1 is superior to the Bianca in that respect. The Bianca can probably do 90% of what the DE1 does in terms of taste, but I believe the key really lies in the programmability of the Decent machines. I have read feedback here and elsewhere about "sour" taste, and thin shots on the DE1. This is not my experience. I even tried the "Italian espresso" profile and it was going too far on the opposite side of the spectrum (maybe because the 94C temperature from this profile is too high, as it refers to group temp, but I digress). I have been able to extract shots that are as syrupy as from the Bianca. I haven't had the courage to set them up side by side and do a direct comparison, but I'm fairly confident in my observations.
Flow/pressure charts also help with the dialing in once you know what to look for, so that's potentially less precious coffee wasted too!
Feedbacks about the machine being much less forgiving than an E61 are definitely true, but not on all type of profiles. The default one or the "gentle and sweet" profiles for example are fairly easy to use without having channeling or spraying everywhere. I found that a homemade distributor tool with four 0.4mm needles in a wine cork indeed work wonders in terms of improving puck consistency, and all of that for a few quids.

I'd say the DE1 is probably overkill for most people. However it's a fantastic thing to play with that delivers consistently excellent coffee and which is already leading to new ideas about espresso making improvement thanks to the data it's generating and its community of dedicated users. Some might argue that there is nothing wrong with espresso from traditional machines, and hence nothing to improve in the first place, but that's another debate. It is probably more geared toward people who enjoy lighter roasts, with which profiling really shines.

The only think I'm not too fond of with this machine are the steam wand, the fact that it often generates wet pucks which are messier to knock out of the portafilter and clean (not a big deal, and could be solved with a spacer) and the price (and I bought mine with a discount...). Oh and the fact that I have too low a caffeine tolerance to spend all day to experiment with it

Timely review. I'm currently considering both machines. Nice to hear your thoughts. 

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I was interviewed a few weeks ago for a video podcast by John Lamberton. He's an interesting guy who likes to cover wide-ranging topics.

Instead of focussing on coffee, we talked more about philosophy of design, and the interaction between mental models and tools. These were very much on my mind when we design the Decent, so it was great to explore this topic in depth.

-john

Quote

BRIDGE podcast w/ John Lamberton
An interdisciplinary podcast with a futurist bent that features guests from an assortment of domains in conversation with host John Lamberton. Topics covered include coffee, music, art, futurism, philosophy, aesthetics, cognition, nutrition, transhumanism, animal welfare, sexuality, rationality, complexity, and chaos.

 

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% sales trends for each model

In planning how many DE1 suitcases to get for each size, I needed to make a forecast of what models people have been buying.  Our DE1XL model takes different internal foam from the DE1+/DE1PRO models.

Some insights:

  • The DE1XL model was very slow to start, and now has been taking sales away from our DE1PRO model
  • The DE1+ model is very stable at 30% of our machine sales
  • DE1XL sales briefly shot up, at the same time that we had them in stock.  We didn't anticipate this, and ran out of stock, and ran out of stock after 5 months, at which point sales of that model decreased.

Next month, we're going to start selling a new espresso machine model. It will be the 10 amp version of the DE1XL.  It's 40% more powerful, and so steaming is is faster and higher pressure (around 3.5 bar vs 2 bar), resulting in finer milk microfoam.  Professionals visiting our office who try it have said that the steam feels "normal" to them, like a pro La Marzocco or Simonelli machine, though they're happy with the microfoam quality.

We're in the process of receiving parts to build 2000 machines of our v1.42 model, which we plan to build over the next 9 months.  As we've made 2400 machines in our entire history, that will bring us to 4400 total Decent machines out in the world, which is a fairly reasonable number.  It also means we won't be out of stock for a while, since this is a much larger run than our v1.40 run of 750 machines, which we built and sold out in 3.5 months.

In September, we'll start building 2000 machines of the v1.43 model, which will be virtually identical to our current v1.42 model.  Hopefully we can keep our production up with demand, and not run out of stock again.

-john
 

 

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Decent Zoom call scheduled: Picking the right recipe for your bean

to join the Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81115386914?pwd=NytDTGVYWmVaMitockxhN3hlREJ3dz09

Meeting ID: 811 1538 6914, Passcode: 51


Time: https://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/converter.html?iso=20210108T010000&p1=tz_hkt&p2=224&p3=179&p4=152


As always, the zoom call will be video recorded and made available on youtube later.

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On 06/01/2021 at 01:06, decent_espresso said:

model_sales.thumb.jpg.c53e0490156897561f4fd0883cf77b4f.jpg

% sales trends for each model

In planning how many DE1 suitcases to get for each size, I needed to make a forecast of what models people have been buying.  Our DE1XL model takes different internal foam from the DE1+/DE1PRO models.

Some insights:

  • The DE1XL model was very slow to start, and now has been taking sales away from our DE1PRO model
  • The DE1+ model is very stable at 30% of our machine sales
  • DE1XL sales briefly shot up, at the same time that we had them in stock.  We didn't anticipate this, and ran out of stock, and ran out of stock after 5 months, at which point sales of that model decreased.

Next month, we're going to start selling a new espresso machine model. It will be the 10 amp version of the DE1XL.  It's 40% more powerful, and so steaming is is faster and higher pressure (around 3.5 bar vs 2 bar), resulting in finer milk microfoam.  Professionals visiting our office who try it have said that the steam feels "normal" to them, like a pro La Marzocco or Simonelli machine, though they're happy with the microfoam quality.

We're in the process of receiving parts to build 2000 machines of our v1.42 model, which we plan to build over the next 9 months.  As we've made 2400 machines in our entire history, that will bring us to 4400 total Decent machines out in the world, which is a fairly reasonable number.  It also means we won't be out of stock for a while, since this is a much larger run than our v1.40 run of 750 machines, which we built and sold out in 3.5 months.

In September, we'll start building 2000 machines of the v1.43 model, which will be virtually identical to our current v1.42 model.  Hopefully we can keep our production up with demand, and not run out of stock again.

-john
 

 

So, the 1.42 version will be the higher steam power. Can we pre-order one?

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9 hours ago, Stephen Prosser said:

So, the 1.42 version will be the higher steam power. Can we pre-order one?

v1.42 is the same as v1.40/v1.41, it does not have more steam power.  It's just hew batch of 2000 machines we are building.

However, in February we will be releasing a new model, the DE1XXL, which has 40% more steam power, and it can be pre-ordered.

https://decentespresso.com/c?filter=de1xxl

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R&D fluid dynamic simulation of next-gen mixing chamber

Here is a look into our long-term R&D process.  We've given Ben and Ray a full year (up to 2 years) to work on difficult problems before needing to ship anything new. Our current v1.4 models don't have any major negatives, so instead of tinkering, we want to work on more substantive things.

Ben is working on a new hot water mixing system, planned for release in 2022.  It will not introduce any new features to the DE1, but it does condense 3 separate parts in our current model, into one.  It also removes 8 water tubes, and one of two quite expensive medical-grade flow constrictors.  

This video is a fluid dynamic simulation of hot and cold water mixing. Ben is trying to understand how well the water is mixing.  Turbulence, eddies, and other complicated physical aspects of moving liquids can cause water mixing to be less even, which would then affect our temperature stability.  

Ben's fluid dynamic simulations of water flow onto the coffee puck, 5 years ago, led to a radically different design of how the Decent places water onto a dry puck. We believe it's the main reason why it's so difficult to intentionally cause channeling on the Decent, yet so easy to have that problem on other machines.  

This sort of computerized modelling so much cheaper and faster than physical modelling, which will be done as a later step, once the computer thinks we've got something that might work well.  Then we'll test it in the real world, in an infrared camera, to see how closely the models match reality, and what improvements still need to be made.

-john
 

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On 18/11/2020 at 04:15, decent_espresso said:

xl_build2.thumb.jpg.104ece3d2e0bbbe5fa29881dea532489.jpg

No more waiting for Decent Espresso

Throughout the 3 years we've been making espresso machines, every buyer has had to wait.  It's never been less than a month, frequently 3 months, and some waited much much longer.  In South Korea they called us "the genius machine that nobody can buy".

Finally, FINALLY! this won't be the case.

Even though our monthly sales have been increasing, my team has been getting better and better at their jobs. We did double the staff count in August but this had only a modest effect on machines shipped per month.  

The real shift came from human factors.  I had long ago figured out that Western-style management doesn't work here.  Hong Kongers do not want to be "bossed", and by extension, none of our employees would accept a promotion to be a manager.  What I had learned about Management in California didn't work here.

I tinkered with the workplace culture of the company, and I finally have found a good fit.  

There's an opposing tension between individualism and communal-spirit here.  Some of the workplace experiments I tried, such as having small teams, were actually a productivity and HR disaster, and actually promoted conflict. It's difficult to figure out the right structure and balance.

What has worked best, and REALLY worked, is copying the French restaurant's "battery de cuisine" concept.  In a "battery de cuisine" kitchen, everyone has a speciality, and there's always work to be done in that job. There's no "boss, what should I be working on?"  And when it's mealtime, the pressure is on for each person to produce in their speciality.  Everyone knows how they fit into the whole, when they're expected to perform, and they feel both individual pride in their contribution, as well as in the output of team.

I adapted the "battery de cuisine" system to the Decent factory. 

Keith, for example, is responsible for fully testing every DC PCB (the "computer") that will go inside the espresso machine. Every day, he plugs temperature sensors, LED and motors into a board on his desk, and painstakingly tests it. Each takes about 20 minutes. That's a long time, but thanks to the extensive prep work, when it's time install them, Keith can put 50 computers into 50 espresso machines in just 2 hours.  And rarely do any have problems that need later fixing, when it'd be quite a bit harder to do so.  Like a restaurant dish with a frozen-in-the-middle steak.

Decent Espresso is now run like a professional kitchen. Everyone has their own "prep station".  And when the 50 machines on the line need their part, they're "in the kitchen" installing their part, so they don't slow anyone else down.

Initially I started with 2 lines (a "kitchen") of 50 machines each, with 1 actively being built, and the other being tested. As the testers got faster, after 1 day they finished 25 machines, we squeezed the remaining machines down, and started a 3rd line of the next 50 machines. Thus, most of the time we're actually running 3 "kitchens". 

This puts more stress on good prep. But as each person is totally responsible for their part, they know what is expected of them, but also they are empowered to improve how they work.

And that's how we managed to go from 23 machines per month, to 69, to 108, to 213 and this month: to 291 machines in one month!

I had the "talk radio show" turned off, and it's quiet in the factory, except for power tools pulsing. There's an intense concentration on people's faces. And come Friday, they're mentally drained, but happy, because everyone can see the success of the week.

Tomorrow we're testing 50 DE1XL 220V machines, and in a few days we'll have the same quantity of 110V DE1XL done.  That has us almost wiping out the queue that has been a weight around our neck:

backlog.thumb.jpg.6908907509934630e8bde286ebf6470b.jpg

 

I had hoped (dreamt!) to be at this point before Christmas, but it looks like we'll be there by the end of November, a month early.

sold_vs_shipped.thumb.gif.7afcaf762ac90343226976e564122a49.gif

That also means that if you buy a DE1 before mid-December, there's a good chance we can get it to you in time for Christmas.

. . . 

Am I worried that we're now building much much faster than we're selling?

Yes, of course I am.

However, I'm also aware of just how many people have said "no thanks" to a Decent Espresso Machine, because they didn't want to wait.  

People are used to getting instant satisfaction from their purchases, and a several-months-long wait doesn't cut it.  So I'm hoping that "ships within 24h" will have a positive effect.

And finally, we're getting a tremendous number of inquiries from small cafes.  I think that now that the COVID vaccine is in sight, planning has started on the orgy of travel, restaurant, and entertainment spending that is likely to follow.

-john
 

It seems things didn't work out as you planned. What happened?

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1 hour ago, canuck10 said:

It seems things didn't work out as you planned. What happened?

When I wrote "no more waiting" I didn't anticipate a 35% increase in month-to-month sales.

DE1 sales rose quickly when we had stock, peaking in November and December, selling out of whatever machines we had built:

1877922673_ScreenShot2021-01-13at12_21_43PM.thumb.jpg.b100dc2e8029419046d46706dde9437c.jpg

We closed for 10 days during Christmas, to have a holiday, and we also changed over from the v1.40 line to the v1.42 line, and have some parts shortages during the change-over as all the new parts arrive.

At any rate, the wait is only 4 weeks right now, and likely to get reduced to 2 weeks in about 10 days, we we've just finished 127 machines (current queue is 152 machines) and are another week out from finishing another 100 machines. And all parts for the next 2000 machines, are set to arrive in the next 2 weeks.

However, the DE1 queue will be shortly back to under 2 weeks, and in february I hope we can keep up with sales to start to have stock again, shipping next-day.

Here's a view from my desk:

IMG_3585 2.jpeg

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A coffee cart for the office

We've built a two-DE1 IKEA coffee stand for staff use. There are about 30 people here, making coffee in their-own-preferred way.

The image above is the sign I posted above the cart, for my staff to read (and hopefully, follow),

Previously, we used a large bamboo IKEA table, that let us get away with being messy.  However, that bamboo table isn't anything I'd recommend to our clients, as it was a huge pain in the neck to cut out (due to strengthening cross ribs) and to clean.

The two-DE1 stand is something I developed for tight-on-space coffee carts, as it does give you steam-during brew, or the ability to make two coffees at once.  

But, space is tight, so you have to be disciplined about what you have on the table top, and to have a workflow which manages to work efficiently in a tight space.  

I've got my preferred workflow, which is circular: grind->WDT->tamp->mount portafilter->make espresso->steam milk->pour->serve cup on right->knock out spent puck->rinse portafilter in pitcher rinser->dry basket->grind

Notably, this workflow requires you to be partially ambidextrous, but the benefit is that there is no passing objects between your hands.  It's quite efficient.

I've made the poster above and over the next few weeks I'll be observing how well this works at Decent, with a group of people who are decidedly not baristas (they build our espresso machines).

And I've love to hear your feedback on any experience you've had in trying to get your coworkers to maintain a coffee-making area, and to follow a demonstrably-workable way of making drinks.

Note that this cart is completely self-sufficient, with clean and dirty water handled on the cart.  It's also heavy-load, with those water containers not needing emptying (or filling) often at all.  This is my first time splitting clean water into "espresso water" and "pitcher rinser water" so as to economize.

-john
 

 

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Reddit "Ask me Anything" (AMA) for Decent / john

In 2 days' time I'll be doing a "Ask me Anything" on Reddit.

Announcement:
https://www.reddit.com/r/espresso/comments/kvpt4r/ama_w_john_buckman_founder_of_decent_espresso/

Which will be visible here:
https://www.reddit.com/r/espresso/

it will be at this time/date:
https://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/converter.html?iso=20210115T010000&p1=tz_hkt&p2=224&p3=179&p4=152

Thanks to Andrew Levenson (/r/espresso moderator) for proposing and organizing this.


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4 hours ago, decent_espresso said:

reset-stand.thumb.jpg.c3d3e802639608f7789955de26c97b72.jpg

A coffee cart for the office

We've built a two-DE1 IKEA coffee stand for staff use. There are about 30 people here, making coffee in their-own-preferred way.

The image above is the sign I posted above the cart, for my staff to read (and hopefully, follow),

Previously, we used a large bamboo IKEA table, that let us get away with being messy.  However, that bamboo table isn't anything I'd recommend to our clients, as it was a huge pain in the neck to cut out (due to strengthening cross ribs) and to clean.

The two-DE1 stand is something I developed for tight-on-space coffee carts, as it does give you steam-during brew, or the ability to make two coffees at once.  

But, space is tight, so you have to be disciplined about what you have on the table top, and to have a workflow which manages to work efficiently in a tight space.  

I've got my preferred workflow, which is circular: grind->WDT->tamp->mount portafilter->make espresso->steam milk->pour->serve cup on right->knock out spent puck->rinse portafilter in pitcher rinser->dry basket->grind

Notably, this workflow requires you to be partially ambidextrous, but the benefit is that there is no passing objects between your hands.  It's quite efficient.

I've made the poster above and over the next few weeks I'll be observing how well this works at Decent, with a group of people who are decidedly not baristas (they build our espresso machines).

And I've love to hear your feedback on any experience you've had in trying to get your coworkers to maintain a coffee-making area, and to follow a demonstrably-workable way of making drinks.

Note that this cart is completely self-sufficient, with clean and dirty water handled on the cart.  It's also heavy-load, with those water containers not needing emptying (or filling) often at all.  This is my first time splitting clean water into "espresso water" and "pitcher rinser water" so as to economize.

-john
 

 

can i ask why you wouldnt have the machines on the outside of the unit with the cleaning/grinding section in the middle shared between the two machines. To me it makes more sense from a people workflow, now if 2 people are making coffee there is a risk that person at DE1 turns around and into someone crossing over the back of them

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On Home Barista there was recently a conversation about or XL (aka "Pro") steam wand, and how it doesn't bend far enough.  https://www.home-barista.com/advice/decent-de1-last-questions-before-pressing-submit-payment-button-t70457.html#p768986

One person wrote:

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Note that the pro wand is too long to be able to purge into the drip tray.

I haven't yet announced it publicly until right now, but we have a new XL (aka "pro") steam wand design coming, that resolves that issue.  

Here is a photo comparing the two models

compare.thumb.jpg.79db1d84d4027b7bb597a910451af419.jpg

the gooseneck bend is a different shape, and the wand now angles into the drip tray.  

include.jpg.daa0ae69fbe477d738d84104192e29fc.jpg

It also makes it easier to "ghost steam" (hands free) since the tip goes much deeper into the milk jug. 

deep.jpg.e848cd8f039651f8fec55c21b0e160a4.jpg

 We've also revisited the silicone sleeve that goes over the wand, and the clip connector is now integrated into the steam wand instead of requiring a longer adaptor.

The bad news: due to COVID induced delays, our steam wand supplier is hugely backed up, and we are completely out of any XL steam wands (old or new design) until mid-April, when the new design arrives.  

Until then, we'll be shipping XL models with the standard steam wand, and then following up a few months later with the XL steam wand in the mail.  Swapping the steam wands yourself is not difficult, and there's a video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_RPBf_wp2Io - you will of course be able to keep the standard wand, and the XL wand as well, no need to return anything.

-john
 

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17 hours ago, spasypaddy said:

can i ask why you wouldnt have the machines on the outside of the unit with the cleaning/grinding section in the middle shared between the two machines. To me it makes more sense from a people workflow, now if 2 people are making coffee there is a risk that person at DE1 turns around and into someone crossing over the back of them

The IKEA BROR cart is much smaller than it looks in that photo.  It's only 109cm wide, which is really not wide enough for two people.

920918078_ScreenShot2021-01-14at12_42_17PM.thumb.jpg.9cccc842159049663f532e295758aaad.jpg

So, short answer: I never considered that one cart would be used by two people.  

Another reason is that the workflow I intended was to brew the espresso on the left machine, while you steam milk on the right machine, and then leave the drink for customer pick up to the right of the right machine, in that gulley.

Here's a video of this cart setup being used at a trade show, and you can see the intended workflow in action:

Note that in this video, the cart is made from the IKEA "Rimforsa" table, which is 120cm wide -- slightly more than the BROR that we have now settled on.

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