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JoeF

Second shot inconsistent

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Hi,

 

I'm wondering if someone can help me with an extraction issue I'm often having.

OK, so my typical routine for pulling a double espresso shot would be:

 

Grind 18g into the portafilter basket (weighed using a gram scales)

Break clumps using a cocktail stick

Distribute evenly using finger swiping

Level and tamp

Cooling flush for 5 secs then fit the portafilter to grouphead

Extract approx 36-38g over 25 secs (seems to be good for the particular beans I'm using at the moment).

I'm using the scales here also to check the weight.

OK, all good so far.

Now this will be say the first shot of the day after having the machine on for 30-45 mins for warm up.

This shot tastes perfect to me.

 

Here's where things go downhill from here.

So I remove the portafilter and knock out the puck.

Then I rinse the portafilter basket by running water through the grouphead again which cleans the grinds from the basket and the shower screen.

I connect back the portafilter.

The problem is the next shot I make tastes salty and horrible.

I follow exactly the same process again as above but it never tastes the same.

I've tried varying the time between shots (e.g. leaving it for longer) but it still doesn't seem to make any difference.

 

I there something else I should be doing between shots to clean the grouphead more?

P.S. my machine is a Rocket Apartamento and grinder is Eureka Mignon.

 

Many thanks,

Joe

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It's a bit puzzling. Is the 2nd shot taking the same amount of time? If so, the only things I can think of are:

First shot of the morning may be different due to retained coffee from the previous day being in the basket (unless you purge a couple of grams for the first shot of the day);

Or we're back to it being temperature related. Maybe shot 2 is actually being pulled cooler than you realise? Other than that I'm out of ideas.

 

___

Eat, drink and be merry


Rocket R58Ceado E37SAeropressAerGrind • Puck Puck cold brew widget • VST 18g basket • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 convex black Ti/walnut tamper • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 flat sharp edge tamper • Big bag o' beans • Triumph Street Triple 675R

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Thanks for the help.

Yeah it's puzzling me too!

Second shot takes same time (sometimes maybe a second or 2 longer but not more than that).

When you say purge I presume you mean grinding a few grams and dumping it before filling the basket with the 18g? No I don't do this.

Yeah maybe it is a temp. issue - does cooler temp generally cause saltiness in the shot then?

 

It's a bit puzzling. Is the 2nd shot taking the same amount of time? If so, the only things I can think of are:

First shot of the morning may be different due to retained coffee from the previous day being in the basket (unless you purge a couple of grams for the first shot of the day);

Or we're back to it being temperature related. Maybe shot 2 is actually being pulled cooler than you realise? Other than that I'm out of ideas.

 

___

Eat, drink and be merry

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Yeah, most grinders retain a little bit in the chamber and chute. That will be stale by the next day, so it can be worthwhile just dumping a couple of grams. However I'm inclined to think your issue is temp related. When a shot is under extracted you can sometimes get a impression of saltiness. If the temperature is down, you can end up extracting less from the puck for a given time/flow. This can result in an unbalanced (or at least different) shot.

 

___

Eat, drink and be merry


Rocket R58Ceado E37SAeropressAerGrind • Puck Puck cold brew widget • VST 18g basket • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 convex black Ti/walnut tamper • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 flat sharp edge tamper • Big bag o' beans • Triumph Street Triple 675R

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Ah OK - thanks.

Would it be worth me trying a cooling flush using the steam wand instead of the brew lever?

Or maybe I need to flush for a few seconds longer to try to regulate the temp?

 

Yeah, most grinders retain a little bit in the chamber and chute. That will be stale by the next day, so it can be worthwhile just dumping a couple of grams. However I'm inclined to think your issue is temp related. When a shot is under extracted you can sometimes get a impression of saltiness. If the temperature is down, you can end up extracting less from the puck for a given time/flow. This can result in an unbalanced (or at least different) shot.

 

___

Eat, drink and be merry

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Tricky to say. I have no experience with HX. Whether the flush warms or heats the group (or is even necessary for shot 2) might just take a bit of trial and error.

 

___

Eat, drink and be merry


Rocket R58Ceado E37SAeropressAerGrind • Puck Puck cold brew widget • VST 18g basket • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 convex black Ti/walnut tamper • Torr Goldfinger 58.5 flat sharp edge tamper • Big bag o' beans • Triumph Street Triple 675R

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There are grouphead thermometers availanle that fit where the allen bolt is which can help with getting a consistant temp.


Laissez les bons temps rouler

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Salty coffee usually means under extraction. If dose, output and time same, only issue i can think of would be temperature. I have no experience with HX but i don't think a cooling flush is necessary for 2nd shot if your preparation is no longer than a minute after first shot.

Edited by Inspector

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That's what I can't figure out - I'd normally have a second shot 10,15 maybe even 30mins after the first.

So in my mind the boiler shouldn't be under temp at that stage?

 

Salty coffee usually means under extraction. If dose, output and time same, only issue i can think of would be temperature. I have no experience with HX but i don't think a cooling flush is necessary for 2nd shot if your preparation is no longer then a minute after first shot.

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Yeah, I think I may get some more beans and set aside my Saturday afternoon for some experimenting ;)

 

Tricky to say. I have no experience with HX. Whether the flush warms or heats the group (or is even necessary for shot 2) might just take a bit of trial and error.

 

___

Eat, drink and be merry

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Have you checked the temperature of the group when you come to the machine later? As in touched it for a second to see if it's hot enough to burn? If you get an airlock the group could be cooling down before you come back to the machine. Do you use the steam wand after your first shot?


Expobar DB Office Leva IV, La Pavoni Professional -- FOR SALE: MBK HEFT, Torr Goldfinger Titan Convex & 58.55 Flat -- Ceado E8, Lido E, Pharos VDD -- 2 and 5 cup Syphons; Vintage Nicro Metal Filter -- Gene Cafe CBR101 with Dimmer Mod and Bean Mass Probe

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Do you perform a cooling flush on the second shot after the machine has been idle for 30 minutes?

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Out of interest where are your beans being stored?

 

Could the temperature of the beans be the issue? Overnight they get cold and then during the day as the central heating comes on they warm up.

 

In the early days I found bean temperature affected extraction and as such now keep them in the freezer for consistency.


Ve ve suvivius.... /E37s/ Eazytamp / tupperware pot / completely healthy relationship with coffee (and bank manager).

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My guess is temperature - depending on how an e61 hx is setup and how the operator uses it, 2nd shot can be hugely different temp in my experience.

 

I had the same issue - it wasn’t until I got a group head thermometer that I realised I was flushing too much water after first shot and/or not waiting long enough for recovery.

 

On saying that I would say most e61 hx’s run hot enough for 2nd shot to be ok unless you’re running quite a low boiler pressure? Is your boiler pressure topping out under 1 bar?


Plumbed in Vesuvius - BWT Bestmax - Niche in Black. Aeropress and Aergrind

 

Live and Let Live

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Hi all,

 

Thanks for your comments - this has been very helpful.

My beans are stored near to the grinder and not far from a radiator in the kitchen actually so yes they may be heating up a bit - hadn't considered that so I'll move them to a cooler area.

Yes, the group head is still red hot to touch after I come back for the second shot - I'll make a note of the pressure gauge though as I hadn't been checking that.

 

I did have a bit of success yesterday & this morning as I've tried something different.

Just before I start to grind the beans into the basket I did a flush of water for 5 sec but this time while the portafilter is connected to the grouphead.

I dried the basket and spouts thoroughly before going about my routine as normal (including another flush just before I'm about to reconnect the portafilter for the shot).

The strong salty taste didn't seem to be present.

It's early days yet so I'll need to try keep trying this but it's definitely a bit better.

Was wondering if maybe some coffee oils or residue are being purged from the portafilter in doing this extra step?

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