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LouisF

Wet steam from Brewtus IV

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What could be the cause of the excessive wetness of the steam on such a machine? The technical guy at the agents I purchased it from said it could be that the sensor regulating water level in the steam kettle allows too high a level of water in the kettle, but how can this came about when the machine has been making good micro foam six months ago and has not been tampered with in any way? When steaming into a vessel that has been heated with boiling water, a lot of water appears in the vessel, even if I let go a good, prolonged purging dose of steam first?

 

 

The result is that milk would not foam properly as I have become used to in the past almost two years since I bought the machine.

 

 

Any suggestions?

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If your water is hard it could be the water level sensor is scaled up, this will allow the water to rise to a higher level.

Remove the level probe and clean it AND or de-scale the machine

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Thanks. Machine has been descaled, but I shall have a look at the probe, as per your suggestion. The technical guy at my supplier did suggest I should adjust the probe's depth, but your suggestion makes more sense. Perhaps my descaling has not been 100% effective.

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Thanks. Machine has been descaled, but I shall have a look at the probe, as per your suggestion. The technical guy at my supplier did suggest I should adjust the probe's depth, but your suggestion makes more sense. Perhaps my descaling has not been 100% effective.

 

I would be very careful with the advice from your suppliers technical guy....he clearly doesn't know too much about these machines to give you that sort of bad advice. Especially as adjusting the probes length will usually mean raising it and increasing the level of the water in the steam boiler. This is because the probes are cut to length and pretty much fully inserted, so unless he has found a way to magically extend the length of the probe, it would only make things worse.

 

The advice you have received from @El carajillo is better than from that technician and I would suggest following that first.


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I do this as a hobby, I'm not in business and receive no payment for my work a full disclosure is, and always has been, on my review and YouTube sites. Oh, I agree with @dfk41 quite often...well sometimes.

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Have you tried increasing the pressure to 1.5 bar? Assuming it's a newish machine it should have a pressure stat near the service boiler with a plastic cover over to prevent you from adjusting it. I think it's just attached with a cable tie. One or two notches movement should be enough.


ACS Minima (Beta) with Bianca Paddle -- Reskinned Ceado E8, Niche Zero --- Gene Cafe CBR101 with Dimmer Mod and Bean Mass Probe

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Thanks for all your advice guys.

Yes, I agree the technical guy did not know what he was talking about for I did find the probe to be at maximum depth already. I have descaled the machine before opening this thread, so the probe is as clean as a whistle. The machine had its second birthday last month so I believe the pressure stat is where you describe, Rob. Shall have a go at that in the next couple of days and report back.

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Have you tried increasing the pressure to 1.5 bar? Assuming it's a newish machine it should have a pressure stat near the service boiler with a plastic cover over to prevent you from adjusting it. I think it's just attached with a cable tie. One or two notches movement should be enough.

Do you also find water in an empty vessel when you steam into that as I have described in my opening post?

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Yes. That'll happen whenever steam comes into contact with a an object not hot enough to stop it from turning into water. How much water are you getting and did you measure how much you were getting before you had this problem for reference?

 

Is this an accurate breakdown of your process?

 

1. Steam and get good microfoam for six months.

2. Steam and have problems getting good microfoam.

3. Descale machine.

4. Still have problems getting good mirofoam.

5. Test by steaming into a hot cup and see water collecting.

 

At what point did you contact your agent for help? Was it before descaling or after? Did you descale and then have problems or descale because you were having problems and thought the probe might be scaled up? Or did you test to see how wet the steam was, then contact the agent etc etc

 

6. Assume the problem is with the service boiler because you've noticed water collecting from steam for the first time?

OR

7. Notice more water collects from steam than before and you wonder what could be the cause...

 

If 6 is accurate then you might not have a problem with the boiler at all, it could just be the milk. If 7 then you're on the right track. What pressure does it get to when heated?

Edited by Rob1

ACS Minima (Beta) with Bianca Paddle -- Reskinned Ceado E8, Niche Zero --- Gene Cafe CBR101 with Dimmer Mod and Bean Mass Probe

WATER CALCULATOR

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Yes. That'll happen whenever steam comes into contact with a an object not hot enough to stop it from turning into water. How much water are you getting and did you measure how much you were getting before you had this problem for reference?

 

Is this an accurate breakdown of your process?

 

1. Steam and get good microfoam for six months, and Since I bought it two years ago, actually, but some months ago I started experiencing problems to create good, firm micro foam - yes, about from the time we moved here to the Strand in the Cape region.

2. Steam and have problems getting good microfoam. Yes.

3. Descale machine. ​Yes.

4. Still have problems getting good mirofoam. ​Yes.

5. Test by steaming into a hot cup and see water collecting. ​Yes, this I did before descaling and had hoped descaling may rectify the situation.

 

At what point did you contact your agent for help? Was it before descaling or after? ​After Did you descale and then have problems or descale because you were having problems ​Yes. and thought the probe might be scaled up? ​Did not really think of the probe, that was the agent's idea.Or did you test to see how wet the steam was, then contact the agent ​Yes, contacted agent after testing. etc etc

 

6. Assume the problem is with the service boiler because you've noticed water collecting from steam for the first time? ​Yes, I never before thought of testing for water collection, it was just an idea I got while trying to solve the foaming problem.

OR

7. Notice more water collects from steam than before and you wonder what could be the cause...​No.

 

If 6 is accurate then you might not have a problem with the boiler at all, it could just be the milk. If 7 then you're on the right track. What pressure does it get to when heated? ​Pressure goes up to a maximum of 1,3 Bar, but more usually between 1 and 1,2 Bar

I am also beginning to suspect the milk, but why all that water in the hot vessel when I blow steam into it? What is the situation with other Brewus owners?

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The pressure shouldn't change. It should go up to its set point and very slowly drop off until the heater is activated again to bring it back up to temp. When you open the wand or water tap the pressure will obviously drop quickly and the heater will be activated giving you a constant supply of steam.

 

Mine came set from the factory at 1.2 bar I think. I increased it to 1.5.

 

Measure how much water you get after a purge (just doing it by weight) and somebody using a brewtus with the same pressure as yours can see if they match up more or less.


ACS Minima (Beta) with Bianca Paddle -- Reskinned Ceado E8, Niche Zero --- Gene Cafe CBR101 with Dimmer Mod and Bean Mass Probe

WATER CALCULATOR

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I checked the pressure at 1.2 B, steamed for 30 s (did purging blast first), pressure fell to 0.9 B for the duration and quickly went up to 1.2 B again when I closed the steam valve. Water in a vessel that was too hot to touch - cannot be condensation - 2.4 g.

I would appreciate it if someone could run a similar test on a similar machine.

Edited by LouisF

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What do you mean it can't be condensation? And why on earth are you streaming into a hot container? Unless your container was heated above 100c then it isn't too hot for condensation to form. Do you preheat the milk until its too hot to touch and then steam it or something? I'm confused by your attempts diagnose the problem here. It seems like you've decided your steam is suddenly too wet and to prove it you've steamed into a container apparently heated to the point that 125c steam cannot condense on it and therefore any water collected must be because the water isn't superheated enough in the boiler. 2.5g is inconsequential. The amount collected when the wand is submerged in milk will be more as the steam can't escape and its going into something that's about 4c to start with. To know how much water is going into the milk just weigh the milk before and after steaming and remove a gram or two for whatever is stuck to the tip of the wand. The difference is how much water has gone into the milk which is a measure that can be replicated on any machine for the sake of comparison.

 

Tldr: it's the milk.


ACS Minima (Beta) with Bianca Paddle -- Reskinned Ceado E8, Niche Zero --- Gene Cafe CBR101 with Dimmer Mod and Bean Mass Probe

WATER CALCULATOR

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Water cannot condensate on a surface at temperatures in excess of 60°C. I steam into an empty container to see if there is a lot of water emitted along with the steam because it is common knowledge as far as I have read in many different publications (posts, articles of the how-to type, etc.) that you purge the steam nozzle to prevent water being blown into the milk so you can produce proper foam. I am looking for a cause of poor milk texturing, and checking for water coming from the steam nozzle is a possible cause as far as I can see. One can actually hear [edit 12-11-2018] minute drops as they make a spitting sort of noise when shooting from the steam nozzle.

 

I hear what you are saying about water condensing in the milk. Makes sense. The milk could also be the problem, but I used a milk brand used by at least two reputable coffee shops in the vicinity and they get perfect foam from it. I have never attended a barista course; all I know about espresso and steaming is what I found in a lot of articles on the web and watching many many videos on the subject. Planning to go do a barista course in the near future, toting along my own machine, to up my coffee game.

 

May report back on that sometime.

Edited by LouisF

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Can you post a video of purging and then steaming your milk so we can see what’s happening?


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There is nothing wrong with your machine, the issue seems to be your understanding of steam production on that machine.


 Reviews: https://coffeeequipmentreviews.wordpress.com/ YouTube channel: https://tinyurl.com/szhgxzl

I do this as a hobby, I'm not in business and receive no payment for my work a full disclosure is, and always has been, on my review and YouTube sites. Oh, I agree with @dfk41 quite often...well sometimes.

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121.9g milk steamed to about 65c weighed 137.6g. So about 15ml of water ended up in the milk.

 

Water will condense in the air before (and after) it hits your cup. And your methodology makes no sense, its all based on noticing things you haven't noticed before and testing in ways that are irrelevant.

 

Also as a tip, purging for 30 seconds is incredibly excessive. You're just wasting water and causing a mineral build up in the boiler increasing your need to flush it out more regularly. Purge until the initial blast of water stops, it should take no more than a few seconds.


ACS Minima (Beta) with Bianca Paddle -- Reskinned Ceado E8, Niche Zero --- Gene Cafe CBR101 with Dimmer Mod and Bean Mass Probe

WATER CALCULATOR

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Can you post a video of purging and then steaming your milk so we can see what’s happening?

I'll try to that, Mildred, great idea.

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