yakster Senior Member Joined: 25 Feb 2009 Posts: 1,042 Location: San Jose, CA Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: Gaggia Factory / La Peppina... Grinder: Vario / Kyocera Vac Pot: Yama 8 + Pyrex Lox-in Rod Drip: Brazen / Kalita / Chemex /... Roaster: Behmor
Posted Thu Feb 7, 2013, 3:32pm Subject: Re: How to measure portafilter size?
I believe that the Saeco machines, and a lot of the entry level espresso machines are 53 mm. Some of the tamper sites have a list of machines and portafilter sizes, but I just did a search on Saeco Via Venezia Portafilter Size and came up with 53 mm on an Amazon tamper listing here.
Markarian Senior Member Joined: 27 Jun 2012 Posts: 658 Location: Seattle Area Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: ECM Technika IV Profi WT-WC Grinder: Baratza Forte AP, HG One Vac Pot: Bunn Trifecta MB Drip: Moka, Aeropress, Hario V60 Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Thu Feb 7, 2013, 5:08pm Subject: Re: How to measure portafilter size?
Yes, Saeco uses a 53mm portafilter. I can only assume if you're asking what size the PF is, you're probably thinking of buying a tamper or a replacement PF. Bear in mind that the ViaVen uses a pressurized portafilter and that tamping those is a bad idea. Non-pressurized portafilters can be found at Seattle Coffee Gear. They're not cheap, but they're beautifully made. Also, your Cuisinart grinder will NOT grind sufficiently fine or uniform for unpressurized espresso. You need to either buy a hand grinder, such as the $40 Hario Skerton, or an entry level electric grinder, such as the Baratza Preciso. I used to have several Saeco machines and they make terrific espresso, so long as you're patient, use fresh coffee, and a capable grinder. Welcome to CG and best of luck!
RebelEdster Senior Member Joined: 7 Feb 2013 Posts: 2 Location: Memphis, TN Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Saeco Grinder: Cusinart
Posted Fri Feb 8, 2013, 7:43am Subject: Re: How to measure portafilter size?
Thanks! Actually, I was looking at a set of portafilters on EBay, but they are 58mm. I depressurized my original portafilter a long time ago, and it has subsequently broken. I have a new (non-pressurized) one a recently purchased from SCG. Now, I'm interested in a bottomless one. You are correct, my grinder doesn't grind fine enough, so that's my next step. Does the manual grinder you mentioned actually produce a fine espresso grind? The grinder you recommended looks good. I was also looking at the Rancilio doserless ones. You are correct, the Saeco makes good espresso, but I find that I need to heat the machine up on the steam setting to get the boiler temp up above 200 and for the group head to heat up. I usually let it heat up for several minutes, then blast the steam through the brew head, and then pull my shot. Thanks again.
Buy Baratza before you buy Rancilio as far as grinders. You can often get a refurbished unit from Baratza if you call them.
If you have one of the newer Via Venezias, I would find a broken Starbucks Barista/Estro Vapore/Rio Vapore/Proteo Barista and get the steam wand off of it, since it doesn't have a panarello. I might have one laying around, so I'll check, but don't hold your breath. Good luck!
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