cappuccinoboy Senior Member Joined: 27 Jun 2009 Posts: 798 Location: MILANO Expertise: Professional
Espresso: Milano pod, Milano fully... Grinder: grind on demand
Posted Mon Jun 4, 2012, 2:51pm Subject: Re: Reasons for fast shots other than grinder
I freeze both fresh-roasted and "stale" Italian espressos purchased from the local Italian market, and get excellent results with both as long I use them within a day or two. I freeze in very small batches so I remove at most 1-2 days worth.
If you get excellent results, your "stale" Italian coffee after all is not stale at all at time of freezing, it could be that industrial packaging is in fact working......(just for the unrepentant "Stale, period!" Geeks...) Ciao, Pietro
SteveJames Senior Member Joined: 5 Feb 2012 Posts: 8 Location: Wyoming Expertise: Just starting
Posted Tue Jun 5, 2012, 10:27pm Subject: Re: Reasons for fast shots other than grinder
If you have not done so already, try what Mark "naimnut"has suggested. You can always readjust back to something else if you get worried about hurting the burrs, but based on all of the posts I have read on your thread, along with my last 3 months of beginner experience using Alex II and Vario combo, with Black Pearl and Redbird coffees..., seems that you need to get finer than you have so far.
Posted Wed Jun 6, 2012, 10:22am Subject: Re: Reasons for fast shots other than grinder
What is the pressure set at on the machine? Cheap guage and connector to the PF should answer that, unless there is not a simple way to connect a guage to the PF. Perhaps it is set perfectly, but eliminate that variable if you can.
Posted Wed Jun 6, 2012, 11:27am Subject: Re: Reasons for fast shots other than grinder
I doubt its the grinder, I had no problem choking my Silvia with my Preciso and if the coffee is coming out fine enough to stain your hands its fine enough to make espresso.
Some other variables: Coffee: try some fresh, never frozen, coffee. Check the roast date, dont use beans past 15 days, store them in a paper bag or someplace where they can breathe, do not freeze or refrigerate.
Dose: weigh your grounds. I would run a couple grams of beans through your machine and toss the grounds just to make sure you arent using any stale grounds from the last time you used the grinder.
Distrubution: wdt. Doesn't have to be fancy. Use a funnel (I use a yogurt container with the bottom cut off), get the grounds in the portfailter, use a needle or toothpick or something to stir the grounds to break up clumps. I like to tap the pf on my table to get the grounds to settle before I take out the funnel to tamp.
Tamp: don't worry so much about this. Just make sure you arent putting too much pressure on any one part of the puck. Don't tap the pf with the tamper as it can lead to cracks/channeling.
Temp: use the styrofoam cup/instant read thermometer method to measure your temperature at the grouphead.
As far as pressure, I don't really know how to help you. I know you said Baratza and SCG said the machine is working fine, but that doesn't actually mean anything until they use the machine themselves.
For what it's worth: I have a Rocket Giotto Premium Plus V2 on the way (yay) and expect that the preciso will be able to handle it (oh, I so hope it can handle it).
So, these were all good ideas, I checked channeling with a bottomless portafilter and am not having any issues there. I weighed the dose as high as 20g. And as for pressure, last night I checked the OPV return tube and it is returning water with a blind filter, which means the valve is working. I can't test if it's set too high, but at least I know it isn't blasting away at 12bar like it would have with a defective OPV.
I'm working on getting some fresh roasted coffee that has never been frozen to see if the moisture content has varied from freezing, because the Vario on its finest still doesn't choke my machine. At home I defrosted a third variety and am still not choking my CC1, although the shots are closer to 20 seconds than the 12 I was getting.
Gig103 Senior Member Joined: 12 Feb 2012 Posts: 277 Location: Arizona Expertise: I like coffee
Espresso: QM Andreja Premium,... Grinder: Baratza Vario Drip: French press & Aeropress
Posted Fri Jun 8, 2012, 9:57am Subject: Re: Reasons for fast shots other than grinder
While I wait on fresh coffee, this morning I increased preinfusion and it finally choked the machine and I backed down to 1G. Maybe freezing the coffee, while keeping it "fresh" has adjusted the moisture content and it needed more time to expand? Not that I think 1G is normal, it's still really fine, but it did help with the coffee.
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