Jump to content
IGNORED

Any Londoners willing to test their grinder on my MaraX?


Recommended Posts

Dear Londoners,

I'm currently getting sour coffee on my MaraX + Niche Zero combo.  I suspect a problem with one of the two and I'd like to test them one by one. Also, more than anything, it would be great to get another pair of (experienced) eyes on my workflow and the taste the coffee to confirm my diagnosis.

(1) If you have a spare grinder, ideally a Niche, that I could borrow for a day to test it on my MaraX, that would be great.  Or you're welcome to visit me and we could dial in some coffee together on your grinder against my MaraX

(2) Would anybody in London be willing to have me bring my Niche and test whether it makes tasty coffee on their machine?

I'm located at Bromley by Bow (between Canary Wharf and Stratford). I'm 3m away from the tube station and the 5m away from Devon's Road DLR station.

I appreciate it's a long shot during corona but it would be really helpful.

 

Cheers.

 More details at: 

 

Edited by PD2020
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 146
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Suspect it wasn't the Vovlic but the Epsom salts....which for me should really be used for medicinal purposes under the advice of a physician, immersion pools and perhaps beer making.

Yep! (ps: I got a new forum name it seems.. 😂👍)

I pulled 3 shots. 18g in, 80g out, grinder setting 10, total time 38s - not pleasant in flavour (it still seemed sour but maybe with a bit of bitter in it) 18g in, 45g out, grinder setting 7

Posted Images

Grinders don't make tasty coffee, you buy tasty coffee & the grinder breaks the beans into little pieces for you to then make tasty coffee. The grinder would normally need to be quite obviously broken to not be able to carry out its job to a normal degree.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • PD2020 changed the title to Any Londoners willing to test their grinder on my MaraX?

Fair point, MWJB.  I think that my Niche is working great. This is basically just binary testing of the components in isolation.

Anyway as the machine is a more likely candidate to cause issues, I have renamed the thread to "Any Londoners willing to test their grinder on my MaraX?"

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd be looking at water quality rather than grinder. What have you used to remineralise? I've had very few sour shots from the Niche, all of them very obviously wrong grind settings when switching to a new coffee. If you're getting sour shots grind a bit finer, don't worry about time increasing to 40 seconds+.

Why would the MaraX be the issue? Do you think the temperature is off somehow?

Edited by Rob1
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Rob1. Thanks for replying. 

I have been using Soda Bicarb and Epsom Salts. First I tested the Osmio Water for KH and GH with the extended API test (20ml) before.  Then added enough Soda Bicarb and Espom Salts to get the water to the SCA spec (40KH + 68GH).  Finally I retested with API test to confirm the output.  Also used TDS meter to confirm the total dissolved solids to be at around 110.

The remineralised water tastes clearly better and nicely balanced compared to the RO water straight from Osmio, which has a slightly acidic (I guess) test. Tasting was done by both me and one more person several times.

I will retry the super fine grind setting today. Thanks for the tip. Last time I tried it the coffee cone was forming WAY slower than in DaveC's videos, and I was getting visible channels on the spent puck.  I'll retest today on the same beans.

 

 

IMG_20200922_093000.jpg

Edited by PD2020
Link to post
Share on other sites

I didn't get on well with epsom salts. If you can brew with your water for any other method you'll eliminate water as a possibility though, cupping might be enough.

In the previous thread you mention you enjoyed the shot when you added 100ml water to it which suggests your palate isn't adjusted to the strength of espresso, or you otherwise simply don't like it. If you've made espresso you like before with some beans then it stands to reason you just don't like the beans you're currently using....

Don't focus on what somebody else is doing with a different coffee. They'll have a different grind setting and maybe a different dose, aside from the fact they're using different coffee. 

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, PD2020 said:

Hi Rob1. Thanks for replying. 

I have been using Soda Bicarb and Epsom Salts. First I tested the Osmio Water for KH and GH with the extended API test (20ml) before.  Then added enough Soda Bicarb and Espom Salts to get the water to the SCA spec (40KH + 68GH).  Finally I retested with API test to confirm the output.  Also used TDS meter to confirm the total dissolved solids to be at around 110.

The remineralised water tastes clearly better and nicely balanced compared to the RO water straight from Osmio, which has a slightly acidic (I guess) test. Tasting was done by both me and one more person several times.

I will retry the super fine grind setting today. Thanks for the tip. Last time I tried it the coffee cone was forming WAY slower than in DaveC's videos, and I was getting visible channels on the spent puck.  I'll retest today on the same beans.

 

 

IMG_20200922_093000.jpg

The beauty of the MaraX... It's an HX machine. Bring the machine up to temp. Empty the tank, dump a bottle (2L) of Waitrose Essentials Lockhills into the tank. Flush 200ml. Brew some coffee. See it tastes better. This way you are eliminating the water variable.

  • Like 2

Current: Lelit Elizabeth / Niche Zero / VST baskets / Distilled water + 100mg NaCO3/L

Previous: Gaggia Classic | Eureka Mignon | Rocket Cellini Evo | Profitec 700 | Profitec T-64 | Gene Cafe CBR-101 | Kinu M68 | Feldgrind 2 | La Pavoni Europiccola 2012

Also at: CoffeeTime Forum & Niche Zero Owners Group

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Rob1 said:

In the previous thread you mention you enjoyed the shot when you added 100ml water to it which suggests your palate isn't adjusted to the strength of espresso, or you otherwise simply don't like it. If you've made espresso you like before with some beans then it stands to reason you just don't like the beans you're currently using....

 

Yeah, diluting it made it nice, but mind you, when I say nice it was coming from a person that has just had a harsh sour espresso.  Of course it was much nicer when diluted :) 

I gave a sample of that Americano to my girlfriend and she didn't enjoy it at all calling it "the opposite of bitter" - meaning sour 😉

I'm going to get some bottled water (Volvic), put that into my machine, and see if it makes a difference.

Edited by PD2020
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, PD2020 said:

Hi MediumSteamRoast.  Yeah, good idea.  I'm going to try that today too.  I'll go get some Volvic later on - should be good, right?

Yep! (ps: I got a new forum name it seems.. 😂👍)

Edited by MediumRoastSteam
  • Like 1

Current: Lelit Elizabeth / Niche Zero / VST baskets / Distilled water + 100mg NaCO3/L

Previous: Gaggia Classic | Eureka Mignon | Rocket Cellini Evo | Profitec 700 | Profitec T-64 | Gene Cafe CBR-101 | Kinu M68 | Feldgrind 2 | La Pavoni Europiccola 2012

Also at: CoffeeTime Forum & Niche Zero Owners Group

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

By the way, in the previous I posted a photo of the Bicarb of Soda and Epsom Salt I'm using.  Could you please confirm these are the products typically used by people who remineralise their water?  Just want to make sure I'm not putting the obviously wrong product in.

Edited by PD2020
Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, MediumRoastSteam said:

Yep! (ps: I got a new forum name it seems.. 😂👍)

Haha, sorry for that 😉 I'm doing multiple things at the same time and I'm not a multitasking kind of person really 😉

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, PD2020 said:

By the way, in the previous I posted a photo of the Bicarb of Soda and Epsom Salt I'm using.  Could you please confirm these are the products typically used by people who remineralise their water?  Just want to make sure I'm not putting the obviously wrong product in.

I'm not sure about either of those specifically. If they are only what they say they are then fine. Just make sure there are no additives listed on the label like anti-caking agents.

Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, PD2020 said:

Bromley by Bow (between Canary Wharf and Stratford). I'm 3m away from the tube station and the 5m away from Devon's Road DLR station.

im in hackney with a specialita but my gf is too corona scared for this to happen. hopefully someone else can help you out.


What beans are you using btw?

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Right now: Origin Gesha (https://www.origincoffee.co.uk/products/san-jose-gesha), and Square Mile Espresso Decaf (https://shop.squaremilecoffee.com/products/decaf-espresso).

I've tried other beans before though.

The only beans which gave me a truly non-sour espresso were HasBean Decaf (https://www.hasbean.co.uk/products/colombia-finca-la-chorrera-decaf?variant=14997579333667.)

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, PD2020 said:

I can't see any additives.

IMG_20200922_101212.jpg

The bicarbonate, I don’t recognise, and the ingredient list looks odd, but that could just be cake speak for 100% sodium bicarbonate (which is what my packet says).

The Epsom Salts are the exact ones I use, though note (as you probably are aware) that it isn’t pure magnesium sulphate; there is water in the crystals which you will need to account for when dosing (this may already be done for you if you are following e.g. a Barista Hustle DIY recipe, which also uses Epsom Salts rather than pure magnesium sulphate).

I like the taste of Epsom Salts in my water for brewed coffee (e.g. V60). I have never used it for espresso, though, so can’t comment on its taste in that context.

Edited by AJP80
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, AJP80 said:

The bicarbonate, I don’t recognise, and the ingredient list looks odd, but that could just be cake speak for 100% sodium bicarbonate (which is what my packet says).

The Epsom Salts are the exact ones I use, though note (as you are probably aware) that it isn’t pure magnesium sulphate; there is water in the crystals which you will need to account for when dosing (this may already be done for you if you are following e.g. a Barista Hustle DIY recipe, which also uses Epsom Salts rather than pure magnesium sulphate.

I like the taste of Epsom Salts in my water for brewed coffee (e.g. V60). I have never used it for espresso, though, so can’t comment on its taste in that context.

Hi AJP80, thank you for helping out. 

I am using the Barista Hustle way of "making water" :) I dilute 2.45g of Epsom Salt in 1L of Osmio water, and 1.68g of Sodium Bicarb in 1L of Osmio.  The only difference is Osmio isn't exactly pure, it does have TDS ranging from mostly 25 to 50.  That's why I've done lots of API kit testing (extended to 20ml probe) to make sure I'm adding things correctly. I have never put water with more than 120TDS into my machine.  It's always aim for 110 TDS +- 3 and err on the side of 'less' than 'more'.

Also I've just put Volvic into my tank.  So I'll make some coffee in the lunch break and we'll find out whether water was the culprit.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Inspector. Yes, you could do that as well. The tricky is that Osmio water has variable KH/GH depending on when you drew some water last, how long it's been sitting in the tank, and at how concentrated the water in the tank is.

To keep things simple I'm going to run a test using Volvic very soon just to be sure whether it's a water-related problem.  I'll report back.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, PD2020 said:

I will retry the super fine grind setting today. Thanks for the tip. Last time I tried it the coffee cone was forming WAY slower than in DaveC's videos, and I was getting visible channels on the spent puck

If you are already getting channeling with the current grind, isn't that more likely to be the cause of under extraction and sourness than the water? And if you go even finer, wouldn't that make the channeling and sourness problem worse? Maybe the first thing is to try and get rid of the channeling by better distribution and grinding coarser? I consider myself a newbie like yourself, often struggling with the same confusions, so perhaps someone with more experience can comment if what I am saying makes any sense?

Edited by Doram
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • About
    Coffee Forums UK is the UK's premier coffee forum Started in June 2008 by Glenn Watson, we now have more than 24000 mainly UK based members, and welcome more than 3000 members and visitors from around the world each day! With strategic investment and digital expertise from the Jackson Lockhart team (Tait Pollack and Adam Bateman), we are taking Coffee Forums UK to the next level, and are delighted to share the journey with you.

    New Members:
    We are often referred to as the friendliest forum on the web and we look forward to welcoming you onboard. Please read our Terms of Use. We stick by them, existing members please familiarise yourselves with them.


    Advertising

    Coffee Forums Media Kit

    Click Here To Buy Advertising Space 
    £100 p/m when paid yearly, up-to: 690000 banner impressions per month!


    Donate / Sponsor

    Get Your Supporter Badge Today (per year)

    image.png



    Coffee Forums Logo
     


×
×
  • Create New...