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Date: 29 Jan 2007 16:04:40
From: Z @ R
Subject: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
The reason for the question k is that I recognize it may be user error.

I got an Expobar Office Lever about a week ago, after four years with a Jura
Capresso E8 Superautomatic. Going further back in my resume, I was a
barista for Caribou Coffee for a few years in the late 90s, so I have some
basic skills still in my long term memory. And I drink a lot of espresso,
at home and away. My drink of choice is a (very) dry cappucino, or just
plain espresso.

Here's my problem: After much practicing and varying parameters, I can't
get a tasty shot out of this thing. I use a Rancillio Rocky grinder, set
at 10 (i've tried everything from 5 to 15 -- I was told for Espresso to use
between 9 and 12). I fill the 58mm portafilter to the brim, levelled off
like I'm baking, tamp it at 30 lbs. of pressure, and I can get the "golden
rule" shot, 2.0 - 2.5oz. in 20 to 25 seconds. I've bracketed my shotmaking
in every way possible: more and less espresso, finer and thicker grind,
shorter and longer brew time, more and less tamp, and my shots still taste
very very bitter and a little sour. There is usually a good looking -
albeit dark - crema, but it doesn't taste very good.

For the beans, I used whatever I had around the house, mostly Caribou brand
beans, from medium to dark roast. When I wasn't getting good results, I
bought some Illy beans, which made a ginal improvement, but nothing
great.

What could be the problem? This is a fairly basic machine, so I doubt
anything could be wrong with it... Could there?

--

- Jonathan

October 27, 2005 -- T H E C D S A R E H E R E !
E-mail me your mailing addresses for a FREE CD! No strings attached, even
shipping is on me.
Go to www.guestroomproject.com and listen to some clips.
If you like what you hear, click on CONTACT ME to request a free CD.









 
Date: 31 Jan 2007 11:01:55
From: Jasonian
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
I have Matthew's old Pulser, and it can still pull some good shots.

Pretty easily, I might add.

It does take quite a bit of flushing, as mentioned. 5-7oz. sounds
about right.

Don't measure it, just watch the water falling from the shower
screen. Once it begins a steady flow with no bubbles, it's ready to
go. Lock the Portafilter in and pull immediately.

It also sounds like your pressurestat might be set a little too
high.

I'd turn it down to around 1-1.1, myself.




  
Date: 01 Feb 2007 12:27:56
From: Z @ R
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
> It also sounds like your pressurestat might be set a little too
> high.
>
> I'd turn it down to around 1-1.1, myself.

How do I turn it down?



--

- Jonathan

October 27, 2005 -- T H E C D S A R E H E R E !
E-mail me your mailing addresses for a FREE CD! No strings attached, even
shipping is on me.
Go to www.guestroomproject.com and listen to some clips.
If you like what you hear, click on CONTACT ME to request a free CD.






"Jasonian" <jason.haeger@gmail.com > wrote in message
news:1170270115.483841.262730@a75g2000cwd.googlegroups.com...
>I have Matthew's old Pulser, and it can still pull some good shots.
>
> Pretty easily, I might add.
>
> It does take quite a bit of flushing, as mentioned. 5-7oz. sounds
> about right.
>
> Don't measure it, just watch the water falling from the shower
> screen. Once it begins a steady flow with no bubbles, it's ready to
> go. Lock the Portafilter in and pull immediately.
>
> It also sounds like your pressurestat might be set a little too
> high.
>
> I'd turn it down to around 1-1.1, myself.
>
>




 
Date:
From:
Subject:


 
Date: 31 Jan 2007 01:47:25
From: CrackAddict
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?

> Yes, I forgot to mention, I was instructed to do this, and I always run a
> shot before brewing, but still the boiler pressure guage usually runs high.
> The "green zone" is (from memory), .8 - 1.0 bars, and the needle is usually
> 1.2. the "red zone" starts at around 2.0 bars I think.
>
I've got two Office Control machines (one 230V in the UK and one 120V
in USA) and both came with the OPV valve turned up WAY too high. So
maybe you are grinding too fine to compensate for the too high
pressure? Iuse a PF gauge to check since the Office doesn't have a
gauge built in.



 
Date: 30 Jan 2007 03:07:18
From: Barry Jarrett
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
On Mon, 29 Jan 2007 16:04:40 -0500, " Z @ R "
<jattea@adelphia.net > wrote:

>like I'm baking, tamp it at 30 lbs. of pressure, and I can get the "golden
>rule" shot, 2.0 - 2.5oz. in 20 to 25 seconds. I've bracketed my shotmaking
>in every way possible: more and less espresso, finer and thicker grind,
>shorter and longer brew time, more and less tamp, and my shots still taste
>very very bitter and a little sour. There is usually a good looking -
>albeit dark - crema, but it doesn't taste very good.

is this using a double basket or a single basket?



>For the beans, I used whatever I had around the house, mostly Caribou brand
>beans, from medium to dark roast. When I wasn't getting good results, I
>bought some Illy beans, which made a ginal improvement, but nothing
>great.


if you get tasty shots from your jura using the same beans, then it's
not the beans.



 
Date: 29 Jan 2007 17:37:21
From: wes
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
Hi,

I have an Expobar Pulser, and I have a friend who has the Lever, so I
have a lot of experience with those machines. I think your problem is
2 fold:

1. As DaveB as said, I very much doubt that your coffee is very fresh.
Find a local roaster that has a good freshly roasted light Northern
Italian espresso blend, and try that. Else order from any number of
great online roasters, like Stumptown, Intelligentsia, Paradise, etc.,
the list goes on and on. If you don't have quality beans, you're
wasting your time.

2. This is the big one, also- you need to perform a "cooling flush" on
your machine before every pull, as you have an HX machine. If you
don't, the temp of the water coming through your coffee can be as high
as 220 degrees, which is *way* too hot. You want it around 200
degrees, or a little cooler, depending on your preference. The fact
that your crema is really dark sounds like the water is way too hot.
Try this: after you dose and tamp your portafilter, turn your machine
on and flush around 6-7 oz of water through the grouphead. Then
immediately lock your portafilter in and pull your shot. Report back
if the taste is improved.

I dose by volume, so grind till the basket is overflowing, level it
off and then tamp. There are lots of variations to that, but that's a
basic start.

That machine is capable of very good espresso, so keep trying. Better
coffee and a cooling flush will improve your results dramatically! Do
a google search on HX cooling flush, and there should be lots of info
out there. . .

Hope that helps,

Wes Nance
Rochester, NY

ps I spent Sunday morning trying out shots from Andy S.'s new Robur 3
phase grinder! Very impressive! Tasted good, too. . .


> Here's my problem: After much practicing and varying parameters, I can't
> get a tasty shot out of this thing. I use a Rancillio Rocky grinder, set
> at 10 (i've tried everything from 5 to 15 -- I was told for Espresso to use
> between 9 and 12). I fill the 58mm portafilter to the brim, levelled off
> like I'm baking, tamp it at 30 lbs. of pressure, and I can get the "golden
> rule" shot, 2.0 - 2.5oz. in 20 to 25 seconds. I've bracketed my shotmaking
> in every way possible: more and less espresso, finer and thicker grind,
> shorter and longer brew time, more and less tamp, and my shots still taste
> very very bitter and a little sour. There is usually a good looking -
> albeit dark - crema, but it doesn't taste very good.
>



  
Date: 30 Jan 2007 16:56:46
From: Z @ R
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
> 2. This is the big one, also- you need to perform a "cooling flush" on
> your machine before every pull, as you have an HX machine. If you
> don't, the temp of the water coming through your coffee can be as high
> as 220 degrees, which is *way* too hot. You want it around 200
> degrees, or a little cooler, depending on your preference. The fact
> that your crema is really dark sounds like the water is way too hot.

Yes, I forgot to mention, I was instructed to do this, and I always run a
shot before brewing, but still the boiler pressure guage usually runs high.
The "green zone" is (from memory), .8 - 1.0 bars, and the needle is usually
1.2. the "red zone" starts at around 2.0 bars I think.

Could this be causing my problems?


--

- Jonathan

October 27, 2005 -- T H E C D S A R E H E R E !
E-mail me your mailing addresses for a FREE CD! No strings attached, even
shipping is on me.
Go to www.guestroomproject.com and listen to some clips.
If you like what you hear, click on CONTACT ME to request a free CD.


"wes" <wnance3@rochester.rr.com > wrote in message
news:1170121041.771584.315030@j27g2000cwj.googlegroups.com...
> Hi,
>
> I have an Expobar Pulser, and I have a friend who has the Lever, so I
> have a lot of experience with those machines. I think your problem is
> 2 fold:
>
> 1. As DaveB as said, I very much doubt that your coffee is very fresh.
> Find a local roaster that has a good freshly roasted light Northern
> Italian espresso blend, and try that. Else order from any number of
> great online roasters, like Stumptown, Intelligentsia, Paradise, etc.,
> the list goes on and on. If you don't have quality beans, you're
> wasting your time.
>
> 2. This is the big one, also- you need to perform a "cooling flush" on
> your machine before every pull, as you have an HX machine. If you
> don't, the temp of the water coming through your coffee can be as high
> as 220 degrees, which is *way* too hot. You want it around 200
> degrees, or a little cooler, depending on your preference. The fact
> that your crema is really dark sounds like the water is way too hot.
> Try this: after you dose and tamp your portafilter, turn your machine
> on and flush around 6-7 oz of water through the grouphead. Then
> immediately lock your portafilter in and pull your shot. Report back
> if the taste is improved.
>
> I dose by volume, so grind till the basket is overflowing, level it
> off and then tamp. There are lots of variations to that, but that's a
> basic start.
>
> That machine is capable of very good espresso, so keep trying. Better
> coffee and a cooling flush will improve your results dramatically! Do
> a google search on HX cooling flush, and there should be lots of info
> out there. . .
>
> Hope that helps,
>
> Wes Nance
> Rochester, NY
>
> ps I spent Sunday morning trying out shots from Andy S.'s new Robur 3
> phase grinder! Very impressive! Tasted good, too. . .
>
>
>> Here's my problem: After much practicing and varying parameters, I
>> can't
>> get a tasty shot out of this thing. I use a Rancillio Rocky grinder,
>> set
>> at 10 (i've tried everything from 5 to 15 -- I was told for Espresso to
>> use
>> between 9 and 12). I fill the 58mm portafilter to the brim, levelled off
>> like I'm baking, tamp it at 30 lbs. of pressure, and I can get the
>> "golden
>> rule" shot, 2.0 - 2.5oz. in 20 to 25 seconds. I've bracketed my
>> shotmaking
>> in every way possible: more and less espresso, finer and thicker grind,
>> shorter and longer brew time, more and less tamp, and my shots still
>> taste
>> very very bitter and a little sour. There is usually a good looking -
>> albeit dark - crema, but it doesn't taste very good.
>>
>




 
Date: 29 Jan 2007 16:16:43
From: daveb
Subject: Re: Problems with my new expobar office lever?
sounds like the COFFEE is your problem:

" >
> For the beans, I used whatever I had around the house, mostly Caribou
> brand beans, from medium to dark roast. When I wasn't getting good
> results, I bought some Illy beans, which made a ginal improvement, but
> nothing great.
>
> What could be the problem? This is a fairly basic machine, so I doubt
> anything could be wrong with it... Could there?
>


dave
210