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How to - penny spacer

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Evening all

Just wondering what this penny on the tamped coffee is about to tell if the right amount is in the basket? 

Surely this doesnt work on every coffee? I have always done it so when you put the pf in amd out of a dry group - you see the imprint of the screw holding the shower plate in. Too much? 

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Yes.


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

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If you use a penny (or 5p) and ensure that it leaves an impression but not fully depressed you can visibly see how much headroom you’ve got. Will be about 1 mm as the depth of the coin is 1.65mm. 18g of a light roasted coffee will occupy less volume than 18g of a medium roast so the penny method will mean you fill the basket to the same height regardless of coffee roast. I do this every time I change to a different coffee to help with consistency 


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Cheers for the replies 

I suppose the other question would be - what difference would it make if i started to do this? 

If it makes it taste different - how and what taste woukd come through more? Ie does it really matter? 

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The coffee puck expands as it becomes wet, the coffee needs room to expand as this happens.  

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The grinds expand when water goes in so overloading the filter basket results in a coarser grind being used for some grams in to grams of shot out ratio. That changes taste. In some respects it relates to how much expansion space is limited. A little may be ok, little means a few 1/10g too much.

I suspect many people get channelling when there is zero or not enough space. Water is unlikely to go into a puck dead evenly so more gets through in some places than others. Grinds expand and the pressure in the puck builds and that encourages water to only flow in a limited number of places. The edge is common but channels can crop up anywhere. ;) This fits in with my early experience of channelling anyway. I didn't go and buy an oversized tamper but channelling stopped.

Conversely a lower fill height needs a finer grind for some specific ratio. Eventually as that is reduced the used puck starts getting rather wet maybe soggy. At some point that can result in crap coffee / a taste the bean shouldn't have. Same with overfilling really.

John

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In Use Sage DB+IMS Shower Screen, Niche. Others Sage BE, Mazer Mini A,. Projects Little Gem, Gaggia M7D

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