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Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
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JerDGold
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Dec 2013
Posts: 82
Location: Chicago, IL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Breville...
Drip: Chemex
Posted Fri Jan 17, 2014, 9:20am
Subject: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

So before I run out and spend some more money on a PID, I'd like to try and "master" the "art" of temp surfing on the silvia.  I'd like to get an opinion on my two techniques.

1) The more classic technique.  Let machine heat up.  When at machine is properly heated, cooling flush to begin boil cycle.  When light goes off, wait 35 sec. and brew.

2) Reverse temp surf.  Once machine is heated, cooling flush to begin boil cycle.  When boiler is at max temp, short cooling flush to release pressurized water and flash steam, wait 2 or three sec. then brew.

So far the reverse temp surf seems to be working better, I'm getting more consistent taste in the cup, although still not perfect.  What is everyone elses experience with these two (or other?) methods.  I'm wide open to advice and feedback on this.  I want to get this and other techniques down near perfect before I start upgrading anything.
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Frost
Senior Member
Frost
Joined: 26 Jul 2007
Posts: 2,092
Location: Sierra
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Venus
Grinder: Lelit PL53
Roaster: Poppery I w/variac, MET, BT
Posted Fri Jan 17, 2014, 10:59am
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

For temp surfing I always suggest putting a temperature probe on the boiler. If your temp surf technique is working, the boiler temperature will always be the same when you pull the shot.  

Getting the right, accurate, consistent brew temperature should (hopefully....) not be an issue so you can move on to the more important things about shot quality and consistency.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,745
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Fri Jan 17, 2014, 1:03pm
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

As Gary indicated, the whole point is to get a consistent temp, you need some way to judge the temp. A thermometer works best but in a worst case you ... guess at time. There is no hard and fast rule that it is 35 seconds, it could be 40 or 14 or 8 or ? depending on your coffee, machine, room temp, how fast the machine cools/warms.

Is there a driving reason for wanting to learn to temp surf? Is it you do not have money for a PID? That is a good reason. If it is just because you might think it is a skill that you need to develop to make better espresso, well cut yourself some slack and install the PID and don't look back. :D

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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D4F
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 2,007
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Fri Jan 17, 2014, 1:24pm
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

This question comes up in SBDU threads frequently. As Wayne said, if you are not budgeted for PID, learn to surf.  You may learn something about your machine by surfing, but that will be mostly forgotten if you get a PID. There are no bonus points or extra credit for doing it the hard way or suffering through sink shots.  

Get the PID :)

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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Frost
Senior Member
Frost
Joined: 26 Jul 2007
Posts: 2,092
Location: Sierra
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Venus
Grinder: Lelit PL53
Roaster: Poppery I w/variac, MET, BT
Posted Fri Jan 17, 2014, 4:41pm
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

The main reason I'm still using a thermometer after 6 years (...besides being cheap!) is I'm just so much faster and smarter than a PID to get the boiler from steam temp, filled, and back to brew temp.  The PID would need to control or at least integrate the cold water inlet during the flush and brew to keep up. The PID is usually tuned for a much more static thermal condition.   ...that and my routine is just so simple and reliable, it has not changed in 6 years of use.  I know I should join the technology revolution of the century 21. ...I'll wait and hope to get there with my next machine.
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marosmith
Senior Member
marosmith
Joined: 15 Dec 2013
Posts: 86
Location: Lafayette, Oregon
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: NS Oscar, Silvia V2
Grinder: NS MCF, Baratza Encore
Posted Fri Jan 17, 2014, 7:53pm
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

Frost Said:

The main reason I'm still using a thermometer after 6 years (...besides being cheap!) is I'm just so much faster and smarter than a PID to get the boiler from steam temp, filled, and back to brew temp.  The PID would need to control or at least integrate the cold water inlet during the flush and brew to keep up. The PID is usually tuned for a much more static thermal condition.   ...that and my routine is just so simple and reliable, it has not changed in 6 years of use.  I know I should join the technology revolution of the century 21. ...I'll wait and hope to get there with my next machine.

Posted January 17, 2014 link

I'm trying to master the surfing, but mostly because I think PID's are preposterously overpriced for such an extremely simple piece of technology (a thermostat and digital readout).

If they had a good one for $50 it'd be a no brainer.
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JerDGold
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Dec 2013
Posts: 82
Location: Chicago, IL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Breville...
Drip: Chemex
Posted Sat Jan 18, 2014, 7:17am
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

Well there are a few reasons, and they're all silly and in my head...sorta.

1) I thought it would help me to understand the cycles of my machine better

2)  There's a PID on my machine (which I bought used) and isn't working.  I opened it up to try and get it to work and after reading some of the Auber documentation, I felt really intimidated by the installation, and I'm worried about ruining my machine in some way.

3)  I feel really stupid spending more money (I could spend it if I wanted) because after all the money spent, I wish, in hindsight, I had bought the Vario+Crossland CC1 package from SCG which, after the PID purchase, would have been cheaper.

4)  I want a PID, but I don't really want to take the steps necessary to make it happen.
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D4F
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 2,007
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Sat Jan 18, 2014, 10:43am
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

You have a nonfunctioning PID on it.  A fix should be simple and fairly inexpensive. Which PID controller?  What sensor/description? Which SSR?  Does the PID controller light up and does it read temperature?

If it once worked, a fix or replacement should be simple since you do not have to do the wiring or really understand it.  You may need to check connections or replace a component.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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JerDGold
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Dec 2013
Posts: 82
Location: Chicago, IL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Breville...
Drip: Chemex
Posted Sat Jan 18, 2014, 11:20am
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

It's an Auber PID and is completely non-functioning.  Which Auber PID? I don't know.  I don't think it;s the pre-infusion one...but I really have no idea.  Nor what the SSR is.  

The guy I bought from said he also bought the machine used (I'm at least user #3) and the PID was equally non-functioning when he bought it.  When I opened it, I disconnected the factory hookup and re-connected the PID hookups to the boiler and then nothing worked.  When I looked at the back of the PID, it seemed like there were some wires missing when compared to the documentation including but not limited to the brown wire that I think powers the unit.  So that's problem #1.  I personally wouldn't even begin to know how to diagnose what the problem could be,  but am open to help if anyone can.  I'll post more information about the PID when I get home and can look at it.
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D4F
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 2,007
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Sat Jan 18, 2014, 11:39am
Subject: Re: Silvia Temp. Surfing Technique
 

You can glance at a short read about PID controller, SSR, and Sensors here

http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/index.php/topic,182.0.html

Sensor and SSR are highlighted, barely, and will take you to a brief description.


You may have similar to these

Click Here (www.auberins.com)

Click Here (www.auberins.com)

Click Here (www.auberins.com)
or
Click Here (www.auberins.com)

Often a thermostat is replaced with sensor, so see if you can find the sensor on your machine.

If you have the Auber Kit diagram, not just PID diagram, you should be able to find the SSR.  If not, a few hints will help.

If you are interested keep posting.  A reasonably sized photo of the controller front and back.  If you have seen the wires at the back, then it is not boxed?  Do you have a volt meter or multi-meter and can you use it?

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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