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What size of basket?
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Discussions > Espresso > Q and A > What size of...  
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Butterfinger_414
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Butterfinger_414
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Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 11:38am
Subject: What size of basket?
 

Hello CG's
        I'm thinking of getting a VST basket and could not decide which size of basket should I get,I usually dose 16grams of coffee.Thank you


Brent
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emradguy
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Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 12:59pm
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

The VST baskets will be fine if you over or under dose about 1g off their nominal recommended weight.  I.e., a "15g" VST has a range of 14-16g, a "17g" VST has a range of 16-18g, etc. So I'd decide between those two, depending on your usage.

 
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schwaggy
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Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 5:05pm
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

emradguy Said:

The VST baskets will be fine if you over or under dose about 1g off their nominal recommended weight.  I.e., a "15g" VST has a range of 14-16g, a "17g" VST has a range of 16-18g, etc. So I'd decide between those two, depending on your usage.

Posted April 5, 2014 link

I don't think there is a true 17g VST basket, only a batch of La Marzocco branded ones released a couple years ago mistakenly marked 17g
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Butterfinger_414
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Butterfinger_414
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Espresso: Quickmill Andreja
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Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 7:29pm
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

Thank you guys for the respond,I order the 15g basket.
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emradguy
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emradguy
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Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 8:24pm
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

schwaggy Said:

I don't think there is a true 17g VST basket, only a batch of La Marzocco branded ones released a couple years ago mistakenly marked 17g

Posted April 5, 2014 link

Well, true VST doesn't make a 17g size...my mistake. However, the LM Stradas do come in 17g size (not mistakenly marked - http://lamarzoccousa.com/docs/tb/LM-Basket-Guide.pdf). I own both brands and my LMs are in 17g and 21g.

 
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Butterfinger_414
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Butterfinger_414
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Posted Sun Apr 6, 2014, 3:36pm
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

Another question is there any adjustment to make when using the VST basket for the first time,like corser or finer grind maybe?

 
Brent *_*
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emradguy
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emradguy
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Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Sun Apr 6, 2014, 3:42pm
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

I would just prep the basket and see how it goes, then adjust as needed. Most people have found they prefer flat tamper bases. If you have a tamper (such as the RB one) which allows you to screw on a different base AND need/want to order a new one, the size to get is 58.35mm.

 
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brianl
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Posted Mon Apr 7, 2014, 6:55am
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

Butterfinger_414 Said:

Another question is there any adjustment to make when using the VST basket for the first time,like corser or finer grind maybe?

Posted April 6, 2014 link

The VST usually requires a finer grind but don't go crazy. As for grinder size, you'll be fine all the way up to about 58.4mm. Cafelat makes a tamper base specifically for the VST baskets.
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boar_d_laze
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Posted Mon Apr 7, 2014, 8:07am
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

Baskets
The 15g size is pretty small.  Some machines won't work well with a basket that shallow.  Consider ordering an 18g as well.  If you love the 15g size, you can return the larger one.  

Once you've figured out which size works best for you, order another. That makes switching baskets in the same size a non-issue when it comes to dialing-in -- as long as you're dialed in for that size to begin with.

Yes, you're going to have to dial-in your grinder for the VST basket, just as you have to dial it in for a change in coffees, or as the coffee ages.  Luckily, grinders are adjustable.    

As the sole basket in your chain, I'm not sure how much of a positive difference a VST/Strada will make. They're good baskets, but not magic.  

The best thing about the VST/Stradas is their uniformity.  If you're pulling shots for a group, multiple baskets will increase your work rate (just like in a cafe).  In any case, baskets do wear out with use and cleaning; after a few years, the holes enlarge.  

Tampers
A close fitting tamper is a very good thing, and helps prevent "side channeling."  I've used regular 58mm tampers and they require that you do some work to seal the edges, techhiques like NEWS and/or "nutating."

The "VST specific" size is 58.35mm.  VST expressly states that anything between 58.3mm and 58.4mm will fit well.  My favorite tamper, a "Butterfly" from Clive, is nominally 58,2mm and seals as well as either of my 58.35s.

The conventional wisdom about flat tamper bases seems to be less of a consensus than I'd previously thought. But as Ron's post implies there are a lot of posts out there recommending flat.  However my flat and C-flat work equally well; while the Butterfly, which has a very shallow curve, works slightly better.  

As much as I like mine, unless and until you've tamped a lot of baskets, I recommend NOT buying a Butterfly.  It's an awkward tamper to use in a normal "pressing" style, and is really all about low-pressure "consolidation."      

Quite a few good tamper makers put out models in the VST/Strada size.  The least expensive, high quality maker who does a range of styles is Coffee Complements (aka "Precision Tampers" on E-Bay).  

Coffee Complements' "Brass Handle," is very heavy, and very newbie friendly in terms of establishing a level surface and a good mid-pressure force.  Oddly, those two things kind of go together, because by the time you've got the surface of the puck leveled, the tamper's own weight has done a great deal of the press for you -- you just get your fingers in the right place and kind of confirm it to get a good level, tamp.  Also, it looks less like a door-pull in person than on the CC and Precision Tamper web pages.  

Another nice thing about Coffee Complements is their offer of serrated bases a as no-cost option.  Serration doesn't actually do anything, but it makes the puck surface look cool as hell -- and that's never bad.  

If I were buying a tamper as a gift for someone else, It would be a Reg Barber -- they don't really do anything better, but are extremely well made and beaucoup classy.  The Cafelat are nice, but nothing special. The dirty secret about nearly all tampers is that they're tampers.  If it fits your basket and your hand, you're good to go. After that, buy for looks and fun.  

Rich
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Butterfinger_414
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Butterfinger_414
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Location: Oak Creek,Wi
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Espresso: Quickmill Andreja
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Posted Mon Apr 7, 2014, 11:27am
Subject: Re: What size of basket?
 

is there any way i can change my espro tamper base to 58.35mm?, i think I've found a site that selling just a base for espro but could not found any site on to how change the base.

 
Brent *_*
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