New Zassenhaus Hand Mill (use with filter/Chemex)

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New Zassenhaus Hand Mill (use with filter/Chemex)

Postby al_bongo » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:03 pm

Very much my first impressions of the Knee Mill (95 euros) and does not allow for any running in period (if needed?). Bought mainly for use with Melitta 2 cup filter for work and travel.

Initial results for filter/Chemex grind just a bit disappointing. Would say it's just about on a par with my Solis 166 (4-5 years old and daily use). Not even close to Iberital MC2 (when adjusted for filter). Will certainly be a big improvement on pregrinding at home, prior to work, or buying ground when on holiday.

One thing is for certain I seen to grind an awful lot finer for filter/Chemex, based on the instructions for setting the grind on SweetMarias and by Mark Price (Coffeegeek). In gerneral even with the Solis/Iberital the grind I use for filter seems to be a lot finer than is normally recommended, especially for Chemex. Anyone else find this to be the case?
Last edited by al_bongo on Sat Jan 19, 2008 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: New Zassenhous Hand Mill (use with filter/Chemex)

Postby kingseven » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:07 pm

How hard is your water? I have found this makes a huge difference when brewing with the Chemex.
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Postby al_bongo » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:08 pm

I'm in Glasgow, so reckon it's as soft as you get in the uk. I think when it's over extracted I get a bitter/stewed flavour which I feel corresponds to overextracted.

Underextracted is either tasteless or almost tea like in its flavour, which I probably prefer to overextraction, but certainly lacks body.

I've read your blog Jim, and would quite like to stop short of a TDS meter, but I have a horrible feeling that in terms of brewing at home, with either the Solis or the Iberital, the TDS meter might have improved my cup more, though I bought the Zassenhaus primarily for work and holidays for which I'm sure it will be invaluable.
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Postby al_bongo » Sat Jan 19, 2008 10:47 am

My verdict on the Zassenhaus: not impressed. This was an impulse buy and for those considering purchase I would refer them to the consumer reviews on coffeegeek.

My summary is that it's barely adequate for filter and I cannot imagine that it would be in any way suitable for espresso or press pot for that matter. The grind is very inconsistent. Lots (and I mean lots) of fines with the remainder relatively coarse. So much so that following a brew in the aeropress I can physically separate the "puck" into 2 distinct layers, one is so much finer than the other.

This does seem to be a design flaw with the newer models and there is a "fix" on home-barista, but this is I feel somewhat elaborate and for me life is too short.

It's been a long time since I had a blade grinder, but I can't imagine it would be much worse.

Disappointing for the money.
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Postby Neo » Sat Jan 19, 2008 12:14 pm

did you buy an old one?
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Postby al_bongo » Sat Jan 19, 2008 4:45 pm

No this is a brand new one from the Zassenhaus store direct.

I believe the older ones may be better made. The newer ones seem to use a plastic component to maintain burr alignment.

I suppose I always have the option to return it though this is a bit more hassle/expense than for a uk based retailer. Ah well.
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Postby Skippy » Sat Mar 15, 2008 7:13 pm

Anyone have any experience with the Aromagrind hand grinder for filter and press pot?

Id like a hand crank grinder for holidays and trips away but the old kyms, Zassenhaus, etc seem to be pretty big.
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Postby johnnyguitar » Wed Apr 16, 2008 5:51 pm

We've found that the new Zass just don't work nearly as well as some of the old ones. As you found - inconsistent, and they don't grind fine enough to suit us. As for older hand grinders, some will grind fine, and evenly, and some won't - doesn't seem to be burr wear (we've a few that the burrs are nice & sharp, but just won't grind fine). For a little one, we use a Pe De knee mill - quite small, but works great!
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Postby jon » Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:00 pm

Ah, was just looking to pick up a newer Zass. Might need to look elsewhere, then - the difficulties of finding a manual grinder that works :(
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Postby al_bongo » Sun Dec 07, 2008 9:41 pm

Glad you found this. Thought about replying to your thread, but didn't want to seem like I had a personal vendetta against Zass!

I have to confess I wouldn't even try mine with FP, it is so inconsistent in its grind quality.
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Postby jon » Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:29 am

Thanks - useful to know... Hopefully La Cafetiere will do a better job...
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Postby syscrusher » Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:32 am

I bought a new Zass, it's being returned today. Heap of **** to be honest.
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