I wanted crema to flow from my Hamilton Beach machine...just like his!!
The Hamilton Beach machine does an okay job with Starbucks ESE pods right out of the box. But it just doesn't get the water hot enough to take on ground espresso. There seems to be a lot of variance...but mine would heat up to 197 degrees...shut off...coast up to 204...then back to 177 before the heater would cut back on. Some people push the steam button after it gets hot...to surf the temperature up before pulling a shot. The PID makes the machine so much more usable. You can get the temperature exactly where you want it...shot after shot without temp surfing. The temp readout on the PID also lets you see where the factory thermoswitches are set...I did this before bypassing the thermostat on the machine.
Posted Wed Dec 31, 2008, 7:59am Subject: Re: Hamilton Beach w/ PID
I followed his example almost exactly.
The only thing he did...that I didn't...was to put a fuse in the power line going to the PID. I didn't feel it necessary...and I don't leave appliances plugged in when I'm not using them anyway.
I wound up getting a Saeco Burr mill from Costco.com...and modifying the ring setting to enable a finer grind...much like he did...but I believe he had a Solis Maestro. They are very similar in design.
I even started with the Black Cat Espresso that he had good fortune with from Intelligensia Coffee...and I'm waiting on an order from Sweet Maria's.
I can take no credit for this...it's all Steve's ground work. But I sure am enjoying the rewards of his efforts.
Hope that your PID project goes smoothly...and you're results are equally as enjoyable!!
Posted Sat Jan 10, 2009, 5:11am Subject: Re: Hamilton Beach w/ PID
I've GOT to get a knockbox...on my list!
I see you went to a Naked Portafilter...any pointers on cutting the bottom off the filter holder? (in case you busted any knuckles...maybe a clue as to how to avoid the busted knuckles)
I've got an order form from Hamilton Beach...gonna get a couple of extra filter holders, portafilters, and maybe a spare resevoir, in case I want to try to play around with modifying it to hook up to a water line. (am I lazy? or what?)
Good info. Just got the last piece for my hamilton beach PID project in (the PID itself). Before i rip this thing apart (it's my only machine currently) I'm just wondering if anyone has more info than is presented in that site above, possibly a wiring diagram- I found one for a silvia, which should work the same, I just have to figure which wires are what. My concept of how this all works comes from this site:
Posted Fri Jan 15, 2010, 12:08pm Subject: Re: Hamilton Beach w/ PID
Sorry...I haven't logged in for a while. But for anyone interested.
UNPLUG the machine to prevent electrical shock while wiring!!! IF you're not experienced working with electricity...best to get help from someone that is.
The HB machine is very easy to PID. Probably the hardest thing is popping the top off...
The top is held on by two security screws. If you lift the flap that covers the well for the Scoop/Tamper...and look carefully near the hinges...you'll see two little round impressions. These are plugs that cover the access to the security screws. A fine tipped phillips will remove these screws. After you remove these...you'll be able to lift the cover up from the rear - foward. There are a couple of tabs on the front edge of the cover that catch the housing.
There is a terminal block in the left hand side of the machine. I added my wiring to this terminal block for power to the PID. I used the rear post...far left and far right for switched power.
Next, the top-front-left side of the thermoblock has the brew thermostat. You just bypass that thermostat by jumping it to the SSR relay. So, the relay terminals on the SSR replace the thermostat.
Finally, add your temp sensor onto the thermoblock to sense the temperature...
A couple of notes. I used a radio shack project box. It's easy to drill a couple of holes and use pop rivets to secure it to the left side of the machine. Then you'll need to drill a passageway from the project box to the machine...make sure you take into account the location of the scoop/tamper well in the cover. It can interfere with your wiring if you're not carefull. Everything else is just like PID'ing the Silvia...
The pictures linked above show the screw wells with the plugs removed, the terminal blocks, where my power is tapped from with the two black wires, there is an overall view where you'll see the thermostat with the spade connectors removed...and rerouted to male spade terminals at the ends of the red wires, and finally the copper colored coil of wire is the temperature sensor.
Hope this helps...
Additionally, If you just purchased this machine...you might want to loosen the diffusion screen screw...and add food grade lubricant to it. I have used mine for just over a year...and I went to remove the diffusor screen for cleaning --- and it's NOT coming off. I suspect that it's corroded at the threads due to disimilar metals/ or possibly some type of thread sealer. I cannot get mine off now. I was able to descale the machine with citric acid...but the water flows unevenly from the diffusor now...which channels the coffee and doesn't allow for an even extraction.
Still scraping together some $$ to buy a Miss Silvia someday :)
Posted Mon Feb 1, 2010, 8:28pm Subject: Re: Hamilton Beach w/ PID
Preparing to do the same operation here. Popped the cover off today. First, those safety screw caps are a pain to get off, and then the triangular screws underneath are even worse! Managed to ease them out with a small slotted driver, and I'm definitely going to replace them with philips tomorrow. Anyway, looks like my water lines need some help; they're a shade of brown too, well, brown for my tastes. Any suggestions on tubing type and size? I may just pop off the lines in question and take them with me to check size, but if anyone has proper measurements, that'd be nice too.
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