Ashmaster Senior Member Joined: 27 May 2014 Posts: 3 Location: NE US Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: ECM Giotto
Posted Tue May 27, 2014, 7:29am Subject: Bottomless portafilter help needed
Machine: ECM Giotto Rancillo bottomless porta filter with deep basket
I purchased a bottomless portafilter several months ago and recently when brewing I am getting a light spray from the bottom of the filter basket that makes a mess all over the machine, drip tray and counter. This did not occur when I first purchased but is a recent development. Group head gasket has been replaced and has a good seal.
Has anyone encountered this issue and if so how did you resolve?
z0mbie Senior Member Joined: 26 Sep 2013 Posts: 382 Location: Online Expertise: I live coffee
Posted Tue May 27, 2014, 8:33am Subject: Re: Bottomless portafilter help needed
The problem is with the grind. It's called channeling. The bottomless filter is doing precisely what it was designed to do--expose flaws in the extraction that would otherwise remain hidden.
You need to think about what changes have occurred since this started happening. New beans, beans too old, change in prep technique, new grinder, burrs fallen out of alignment, grind setting slippage, worn or damaged burrs, etc...
My guess is that you have made no adjustments to your grinder during this time, right?
calblacksmith Moderator Joined: 25 Nov 2007 Posts: 7,947 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 Tue May 27, 2014, 6:22pm Subject: Re: Bottomless portafilter help needed
Hi! Tamping has the least affect on the shot of all the steps. Just be consistent from shot to shot with the tamp and adjust the grind and dose to get the desired results but only change one thing at a time so you can see how the change affected the shot.
The grind needs to be constantly altered, thus the comment about not changing your grind. As the coffee ages, the grind needs to change too, some times several times a day.
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Posted Wed May 28, 2014, 10:09am Subject: Re: Bottomless portafilter help needed
The problem you're describing isn't channeling, but "spritzing." The good news is that even though spritzing is messy and annoying it seldom means that anything horrible is going on.
Spritzing can can be the result of any of several things singly or in combination. More good news, grind setting and tamp force are kinda way down the list as suspects.
If the spritzing comes early in the shot, it could be because the puck has cracks, gaps, and/or is not properly sealed to the basket wall; building your puck in a wet basket can cause early spritzing; so can weather; so can overdosing the basket so the top of the puck is damaged by the screen.
If the spritzing comes late in the shot, it's because the layer of fines at the bottom of the basket wasn't laid down evenly or shifted during the extraction.
The best advice I can give you is that if your shots are otherwise good switch back to a spouted pf. If you can't see it, it didn't happen.
emradguy Senior Member Joined: 31 Mar 2011 Posts: 3,221 Location: Houston Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2 Grinder: M Major, Macap M4, Pharos,... Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Wed May 28, 2014, 10:36am Subject: Re: Bottomless portafilter help needed
without seeing a photo or, even better, a video of this so-called "light spray", I can't say whether I agree with true channeling or insignificant sprites.
You've now gotten several different things to look into, most of all which involves tweaking your interaction with your equipment and/or puck. This is the "mano" part of the equation. Short of taking a barista training course, I highly recommend reading through Randy's (frcn) website, www.espressomyespresso.com. In particular, look for article 12, Easy Guide to Better Espresso at Home, under the how to section. I don't think there's anything better out there to help you improve your general skills.
. Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
How To #12, EASY GUIDE TO BETTER ESPRESSO AT HOME, is very informative and worth reading but won't supply much insight into what's going on here.
"Spritz" is Yiddish for "spray," and in modern usage the terms are synonymous. In the naked pf context, "channeling" is characterized by multiple streams into the cup. If channeling it was, surely the description would differ.
I am getting a light spray from the bottom of the filter basket that makes a mess all over the machine, drip tray and counter.
Ron, I honestly don't think we need a video to call that spritzing instead of channeling.
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