Powder in Grinder

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Powder in Grinder

Postby tisri » Mon Jan 17, 2005 10:54 am

Hi, me again with another question about equipment.

I've got a Bodum grinder (it looks like the Antigua but in white) and when I grind for filter I get a lot of fine powder in the results. The powder is fine enough that when I put it in a one-cup filter I can tap the side of the filter unit and get an appreciable amount of it falling through. If I don't tap the side first it all ends up in my cup which is a bit grim towards the end.

I've had the unit a few years now so it doesn't really owe me anything, but I'm reluctant to shell out extra cash for a new one if it's something that can be easily fixed.

Any suggestions?

Cheers
John
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Postby wang » Mon Jan 17, 2005 10:58 am

Doubt it'd be easily fixed. Sounds like worn burrs to me. I've got the Maestro which has the same burrset, but different gearing system and motor, and it won't produce tap-able powder even on a fine drip setting in my Bodum one-cup filter.

You could try asking Bodum for a replacement top burr, but they're unlikely to give you a replacement. Alternatively, you could look for a new grinder - www.allesinallem.com do the Maestro Plus in 220V for 100E with 20-25E shipping, roughly cheaper than anothercoffee for the original Maestro. The Maestro+ came out on that site days after my Maestro arrived for 20E extra, I was a bit disappointed :(
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Postby HughF » Mon Jan 17, 2005 1:55 pm

If the bottom burr is worn as well as the top one, (as you've had it a few years) replacing one burr may not be enough. Some grinders have non-replaceable bottom burrs (including IIRC the Maestros plus the Dualit aka Solis 166 I used to own), if your Bodum is one of those you might be wasting your money and effort. New grinders - the Dualit can probably be found for c. £50 and at a similar price you could go for another Bodum - this assumes that it is for non-espresso use.

I noticed less sediment and a cleaner taste in my cafetiere-brewed coffee when moving to a Rocky DL from the Dualit though, so don't assume that a better grinder is completely wasted if you're not making espresso - and it will last longer. Mind you, the Rocky is messier to use than the "enclosed receptacle" Dualit/Maestros type grinders.

Cheers,

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Postby tisri » Mon Jan 17, 2005 4:28 pm

I'm not going to be using it for espresso very often, largely because I've got a bean-to-cup machine that grinds for me so the only reason to grind extra fine is to use the manual doser within the machine.

It's certainly plausible that the burrs are shot - I've had it about seven years and although it went almost unused for three of those it did start life grinding for espresso almost all the time.

If I do end up replacing it I'd rather spend extra on something that will last (and which isn't monstrously big) than save a few pounds and find myself with something unsuitable. If any machines are particularly good at keeping coffee grounds in some kind of container (i.e. reducing static that makes them stick to just about everything) that would also be a Good Thing.

In terms of size anything with a footprint much bigger than the Bodum is likely to be a non-starter, as is anything more than about 50% taller than the Bodum. I'll take a look around for ideas, but any web links people can throw at me with recommendations would be appreciated.

Cheers
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Postby HughF » Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:53 pm

The problem is that all the grinders I can think of which have enclosed receptacles for grounds are not the longer-lasting kind and anything else will make **some** mess. (Someone else may know differently though.) If you don't mind a doser and slightly coarse adjustment steps, the Gaggia MDF is probably the cheapest long-lasting grinder (H292 x W114 x D216millimetres).
Kelkoo lists http://www.best-of-italy.com/cgi-bin/ncommerce3/ProductDisplay?prmenbr=31895&prrfnbr=63846&mall=B&lang=E as the cheapest at £130 + £6 P&P but I don't know that supplier. Gaggia UK are not listing any reconditioned grinders right now.
A Rocky Doserless Stainless Steel is £180 including P&P from https://www.drury.uk.com/mail-order/uk-index.htm - I think it's worth the extra (especially as it's doserless) and Drury are OK suppliers. It's c. H300mm x W110 x D110 plus another D 75mm of 12mm thick platform in front.
If you don't want go for the MDF or better, I'd suggest the c. £50 Dualit unless you can find a Maestro cheaply. I'm not sure if I would bother spending the extra for the Maestro Plus myself given your usage.

Cheers,

Hugh
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Postby E61 » Mon Jan 17, 2005 8:37 pm

I have tried best-of-italy however not for coffee related products (I have bought an ice-cream maker from there) and that was a very pleasant and smooth buying experience.

Another option might be an ascaso grinder. They exist in a number of versions, many known as Innova, but also with small footprints that might interest you. You can see one here at the Danish webshop Moccabox. I have been using one of these or a couple of years with much pleasure. It has conicla burrs and micro adjustment.


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Postby HughF » Mon Jan 17, 2005 8:59 pm

I'm glad you can recommend BOI, thanks for that.

I believe that my Iberital is another version of the Innova worm-drive grinder to which you linked. If so, unless you are using only one grind fineness, I'm concerned that many people would become somewhat frustrated while re-adjusting it for each differing grind. Others might disagree, but that's why I chose not to recommend my Iberital (which is slightly cheaper than the MDF and is doserless). I really like using the Iberital for the one method needing very fine adjustment (espresso) but I still use the Rocky DL for all other coffee grinding.

Cheers,

Hugh
Grinders : Macap MXK conical for espresso, Mahlkoenig Vario for Chemex, Macap MC6 (spare when our office was closed) for cafetiere, Zassenhaus Knee Mill for cafetiere when working away from home.
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Postby tisri » Tue Jan 18, 2005 12:40 am

Thanks again all - I took a look at the Drury web site and found it positively awful to navigate. Every time I wanted to click Back I had to hunt for the equivalent and it took me nearly 10 minutes to find contact details!

The Rocky looks interesting, although I was bothered by Raf's review of it. I'll take a look at the Gaggia and see if it looks suitable.
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Postby Gouezeri » Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:46 am

Tisri,
I've got a Rocky and it works great. Raf got a dodgy one it seems. IF you had a problem with anything made by Rancilio the advantage is that the CoffeeMachine Co. have a repair facility not far from London Bridge. I was there picking up some bits and pieces a week or so ago.
I see you are in London. If you want to have a look at things for yourself. I'd try the following places.
Fairfax: http://www.fairfaxcookshop.com/ On the Finchley Rd (Nr Swiss Cottage) Has La Pavoni and Innova grinders in stock.
Selfridges: didn't find anything on the web and I presume you know where they are ;-). Has La Pavoni, Gaggia, Isomac and KitchenAid (possibly smaller Bodum as well) grinders on display.
Dury: http://www.coffeemachinecompany.co.uk/ Much easier to navigate on! CoffeeMachine Co supplies Drury, but they are more or less the same company (just serving different markets) Has Rancilio and Mazzer, not sure you if could visit them for a demo.

To be honest, I'm not sure there's "one grinder" which suits everybody and all sorts of coffee "machines"... compromises have to be made (often with size/cost) and so you pick the best machine for you. If you want more detailed info, you'd have to explain precisely what it was to be used for and what you'd be looking to spend.
Hope some of this helps
D
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Postby phil » Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:48 am

Re Raf's review, it is fair for his own experience. A number of people had really bad experiences with Rocky, and regrettably Raf was one. From what I can gather there was a period when a number of dodgy grinders were manufactured.

That aside, for those people who did not get a bad Rocky the reputation of the grinder is deserved. Mine served me well (until I damaged the burrs with hard rice!).
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Postby Gouezeri » Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:59 am

Furthermore, he damaged the screws holding the burrs in place as well. Not quite sure how he managed to do that with rice though ;-)
Anyway, having replaced the burrs its as good as new and works absolutely fine for me. Would I buy one at £180? Only if I was making something other than espresso on a regular basis. Otherwise I would go for an Innova with a worm drive and just use it for espresso. But if you want an all round machine, it still is probably the best for the price. Just don't buy Raf's off him! ;-)
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Postby tisri » Tue Jan 18, 2005 12:47 pm

The sort of thing I'm going to be doing with it is grinding for a one-cup filter and cafetiere. Sometimes I'll want to grind for espresso but that will be the exception, for times when I want to put some pre-ground coffee into the bean-to-cup machine.

I'll sometimes want to put 200g of beans or so through it in a single pass but more usually I want enough to make a cafetiere big enough for 4-6 people or grind 50-100g or so of filter coffee to take to work.

Budget wise since it won't be used a great deal I don't want to go for something silly. The £180 for the Rocky doesn't scare me off but I certainly don't want all the gubbins associated with a doser - I want to be able to grind straight into a vacuum bag or into my own container. If I have to grind into a built-in hopper and then empty it that's acceptable, but not ideal.

Sounds like I should see about getting a demo of a Rocky and go from there. The industrial park where Drury are based is within a reasonable taxi ride of work, so just about achievable in a lunch break.
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Postby michel » Tue Jan 18, 2005 12:58 pm

John,
I'm very happy for years now with the doserless Innova Grinder...

Just an Idea...
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Postby Gouezeri » Tue Jan 18, 2005 1:00 pm

The Innova, Rocky DL and possibly one of the Isomacs sound like the obvious choice of those that you could easily "inspect" in London. I'd definitely give the CoffeeMachineCo a ring before turning up as it's more offices, roastery and workshop than "sales room."
FWIW I used my Rocky with "doser" (though I don't use it as it is intended) at the weekend to make a cafetiere for 6 people. Ground straight into the doser, then something like 5 "clicks" later (3 secs or so) everything I had ground was in a glass and then poured into the cafetiere - hardly complicated.
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Postby wang » Tue Jan 18, 2005 1:19 pm

Where can you get an Innova doserless, and how much are they in euros? I can't seem to find a good price around.
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