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Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
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Discussions > Espresso > Q and A > Weight vs....  
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JasonBrandtLewis
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JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
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Posted Fri Jan 25, 2013, 8:52am
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

You're obviously on the right track!  Like Randy (frcn) above, it's been a long time since I had an SBDU (I went the Gaggia route, rather than the Silvia one), but a couple of observations that apply to any machine you may have -- now or in the future.

-- As you've already been told, tapping AFTER tamping is bad, but before you tamp is of little consequence and definite (in my experience) benefit.  
-- Don't worry about the tamping pressure, but be consistent in how you tamp, how much pressure you tamp with.  
-- Seeing the screw on the puck after the shot is quite common, BUT . . . lock in the portafilter with a "loaded" basket, then remove it without pulling a shot; if you see the screw, or the impression of the group screen, you've dosed too much (regardless of roaster's recommendation).

I'm glad to hear the reduction of dose to 16g and WDT has helped.  Your "output" per spout should have evened out (i.e.: the volume from one side should be approx. equal to the other) as well.  (FWIW, I dose approx. 15.5g per double ristretto.)

Basically, I think you're doing everything right so far.  Certainly there are some people here who are more "obsessive" than others; I tend not to be.  (Example:  some will weigh each and every dose before they pull the shot, as well as the final result to figure out the extraction ratio; I weigh a couple of doses on my 0.1 gram scale when dialing in a new bean, or periodically as a "check," but I never weigh each and every dose.)  The point is to do do whatever works for you -- and that means the bottom line is "How does it taste in the cup?"

Cheers from a fellow Berkeley resident,

Jason

 
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rhiannonstone
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rhiannonstone
Joined: 14 Mar 2010
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Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia V3
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Posted Fri Jan 25, 2013, 11:51am
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

JasonBrandtLewis Said:

Seeing the screw on the puck after the shot is quite common, BUT . . . lock in the portafilter with a "loaded" basket, then remove it without pulling a shot; if you see the screw, or the impression of the group screen, you've dosed too much (regardless of roaster's recommendation).

Posted January 25, 2013 link

Thanks for the clarification!

I'm glad to hear the reduction of dose to 16g and WDT has helped.  Your "output" per spout should have evened out (i.e.: the volume from one side should be approx. equal to the other) as well.  (FWIW, I dose approx. 15.5g per double ristretto.)

Yep, I'm getting a beautifully even extraction now. Still a wee bit short, but I'm still fiddling with the grind, and don't mind ristrettos one bit. :)

Basically, I think you're doing everything right so far.  Certainly there are some people here who are more "obsessive" than others; I tend not to be.  (Example:  some will weigh each and every dose before they pull the shot, as well as the final result to figure out the extraction ratio; I weigh a couple of doses on my 0.1 gram scale when dialing in a new bean, or periodically as a "check," but I never weigh each and every dose.)

I think I lean a bit toward the obsessive side, at least in terms of weighing each dose. Mostly because once I started weighing, I realized how wildly the amount of beans varies from scoop to scoop, even if I'm trying hard to be consistent. Bean shapes don't play nicely with space.

Cheers from a fellow Berkeley resident

We've got so few places to get good coffee here in Berkeley proper, I figure there must be plenty of us here!
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steamer
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steamer
Joined: 11 Feb 2005
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Posted Fri Jan 25, 2013, 3:17pm
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

One thing I found and this is only after using the Gaggi for a short time, and then give it 3 years of non use, then start again. I had some issues that were just not clicking right, one was overweighting my dose. the second was when I was cleaning the spray head from all the grounds stuck up and around the head, the mounting screws were loose on the spray head, go figure, not more than 20 shots pulled overall. Once I got the unit cleaned and all the screws tight again, it works like a charm. So even from the factory some screws may come loose.
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rabbit
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Joined: 3 Sep 2008
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Posted Fri Jan 25, 2013, 4:58pm
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

try 12 grams then 13 then 14 grams  for a double shot(3 oz)
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rhiannonstone
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rhiannonstone
Joined: 14 Mar 2010
Posts: 15
Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia V3
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Drip: Aeropress, French Press
Posted Fri Jan 25, 2013, 5:12pm
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

rabbit Said:

try 12 grams then 13 then 14 grams  for a double shot(3 oz)

Posted January 25, 2013 link

The espresso I'm used to drinking (from cafes) is a 2-2.5 ounce double, almost always "overdosed" with 16g+ of coffee. I imagine a 3 ounce double from the lower doses you're suggesting would taste very different, no? Not that I'm not willing to experiment, but those numbers sound quite far from what I'm used to and what I've been reading about.
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frcn
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frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
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Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

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Posted Fri Jan 25, 2013, 6:48pm
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

A three ounce pull with a Silvia is not ideal, particularly for a new user.  The advice to begin with a 12 gram mass is an excellent one, and I will tell you why. Trying a number of 12 gram doubles will force you to tune teh grinder through a range to get around 1.75 to 2.25 ounces before blonding begins. There is very little margin for error. You will be learning to dose evenly, tamp level, and then make fine adjustments to the grinder to control things. I think that when you go to 13 through 16 (if you get that far), you will have gained a huge amount of knowledge and greatly improved your skills. If you learn to control a fickle girl like Silvia, you will be well on your way.

 
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
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Location: Rapid City, SD
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Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 11:37am
Subject: Re: Weight vs. Leveled Volume for Consistent Dose & Distribution
 

rabbit Said:

try 12 grams then 13 then 14 grams  for a double shot(3 oz)

Posted January 25, 2013 link

Let's do a little calculation using AndyS's brew ratios. 3oz of water (or espresso) weighs 90g. 3oz of pure crema weighs about half that (45g). For a 14g coffee dose, a 3oz shot brew ratio lies between 15% (14g/90g) and 30% (14g/45g); i.e., in cafe crema / lungo territory. Lower coffee doses just make it worse.

If you like lungos, that's fine. But 3oz is not a reasonable target volume for a normale double. I suggest you aim for half that volume, which should yield a brew ratio in the normale range.
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