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question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
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haak
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Posts: 71
Location: Surrey, BC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Andreja
Grinder: Milano
Roaster: iRoast2
Posted Fri Dec 2, 2005, 3:59pm
Subject: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

My tastes have some time ago learned to appreciate ristretos, and have taken over as my favorite coffee drink. I have a Silvia which I was using to my satisfaction for about 3 months but since my ristreto evolution I was finding  my coffee a tad too bitter.
As I roast my own I at first attributed this to the varietals and my roasting, and so experimented with both in an effort to bring the bitterness down a notch. Recently I attended the testing of the Marzocco CS3 at the Elysian Room in Vancouver (niiiiice) and to cut a long story short discovered that the extra bitterness in my cup was caused by a grind setting too fine, eventhough the extraction times were perfectly suited for my Silvia (25 seconds). I experimented at home and achieved a noticable reduction in bitterness by using a slightly coarser grind, but now my extraction times are around 12 seconds which might be too fast.
I should also mentioned that a couple of months ago I have put a new vibe pump in which seems to plough through anything.
So I have decided to mod my Silvia and try to reduce the pressure. Does anyone have similiar experiences? Any helpful hints? Can someone point me to a nice link with concise instructions (I have found one already but am looking for more).
Also, is anyone willing to sell or lend me (I live in Surrey, BC, Canada) a pressure gauge fitted portafilter that fits the Silvia. I appreciate your help.
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koffeekev
Senior Member
koffeekev
Joined: 21 Jul 2002
Posts: 693
Location: Connecticut
Expertise: Professional

Posted Fri Dec 2, 2005, 7:24pm
Subject: Re: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

If your pump is set too high (over 9 bars or 135 p.s.i.) the coffee will tend to have an awesome crema but a sharp, overextracted flavor.

12 seconds is way too quick. I shoot for 25.
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Kristi
Senior Member
Kristi
Joined: 6 Oct 2005
Posts: 2,286
Location: Boston
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Evo w silvia wand
Grinder: Macap M4 mod to d&s-less
Roaster: (Jeff at Redbirdcoffee)
Posted Sat Dec 3, 2005, 9:03am
Subject: Re: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

  1. Check the temp at the brew screen (see the link in my sig).

  2. Do the pressure mod via Greg Scace (google for link) - I replaced the factory copper ring with a part from an auto store (Advanced Auto I think) , oil pan plug gasket, copper, (Dorman part# 65273)  5/8"/M14 whatever that means - it's 5/8"id which is the important part, and about 1 1/3 the thickness of the factory one.  Pressure now measures 9 bar.  Change in taste?  Not sure. Probably.

 
#--> I recommend Eric Svendson's adapter and thermometer for E61s (also Silvia) : easy surfing!
# My photo albums have moved to     http://picasaweb.google.com/krislema2
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KittJ
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Jul 2004
Posts: 324
Location: Chappaquiddick Island

Espresso: PID Expobar Brewtus IIIR;
Grinder: Mazzer: Mini & SJ
Drip: Why??
Posted Sat Dec 3, 2005, 9:31am
Subject: Re: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

Kristi,  
Would you drop me a quick note off line via my e-mail button below.  I need to run an idea by you.
Thanks
KittJ     in Winchester at the moment
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Kristi
Senior Member
Kristi
Joined: 6 Oct 2005
Posts: 2,286
Location: Boston
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Evo w silvia wand
Grinder: Macap M4 mod to d&s-less
Roaster: (Jeff at Redbirdcoffee)
Posted Sat Dec 3, 2005, 9:48am
Subject: Re: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

KittJ Said:

Kristi,  
Would you drop me a quick note off line via my e-mail button below.  I need to run an idea by you.
Thanks
KittJ     in Winchester at the moment

Posted December 3, 2005 link

done, I think!

 
#--> I recommend Eric Svendson's adapter and thermometer for E61s (also Silvia) : easy surfing!
# My photo albums have moved to     http://picasaweb.google.com/krislema2
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richardtempura
Senior Member
richardtempura
Joined: 21 Apr 2005
Posts: 236
Location: Montreal, Canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Mazzer Major (Rio)
Posted Sat Dec 3, 2005, 7:47pm
Subject: Re: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

I did the copper gasket mod and found a small inconvenience.

There's alot more steam buildup in my boiler.

Guess the OPV is acting differently with the extra gasket.....

It's not that bad though; I flushed the boiler before; now it has to be done....

Then again, it really helped alot!

Smoother pours, bigger body....
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haak
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Posts: 71
Location: Surrey, BC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Andreja
Grinder: Milano
Roaster: iRoast2
Posted Tue Dec 6, 2005, 12:43am
Subject: Re: question about Rancilio Silvia, taste and pressure adjustment
 

Mod completed. I used about a pound of beans for testing and can tell you that the taste difference is noticable. A lot less bitter as I can use a bit coarser grind. Hmm. Nice. A bit less crema as well. Not much though. I also found out that ECM put out a machine for 2006 called ECM Botticelli II. This is apparently their second attempt, as the first was put out around 2001. Reason I am mentioning it is because it seems to fit the same class as the Silvia and Venus, except it costs a lot more than either, around CDN$900.
Thank you for the link, and everyone thanks for your help.
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