coffee-forum.net
Promoting coffee discussion.

Main
Date: 07 Mar 2007 12:50:47
From: TS Buhr
Subject: Super Automatic or Grinder
I currently have a Gaggia Espresso and have no complaints about the
performance of the machine itself. The problem is I need a grinder. I
have that horrible Bodum Antigua grinder and it obviously isn't up to
snuff. (Have had it a long time...before the Gaggia...got it for drip
and french press). I've been delaying getting a new grinder as it
hasn't been in the budget so I've been having the local Peet's grind
beans in 1/2 pound batches for me. The main problem is inconsistency.
The same setting on their grinder gives me different results (same
blend/roast everytime). I've about had it and am ready to blow some
bucks to improve the situation.

The thing is, I'm not real fond of the hassle/challenge of making the
perfect cup. I've always been attracted to the idea of a super
automatic. Given that, I've been thinking of putting my grinder money
towards the purchase of a super automatic. I realize that supers are
generally frowned upon in this group and can't compare in quality to a
semi-automatic shot that is done well, but I think I'm okay with that.
It has to be better than the crap I've been getting out of the Gaggia
for the past two years due to the poor grind quality. Or is it?

I guess that's my question. My price limit on a super is $1100. Given
this, would I be paying a lot of money to get the same poor quality
beverage I've been getting with a bad grind and the Gaggia? Or would
it be a step up? I realize I could spend less and get a good grinder
and pair it with my existing Gaggia and produce a better shot with
some work. But how much better and how much work? I understand that
for many on this group, perfecting the shot is part of the experience,
but it really isn't for me. It might be some day but not at this
point.

I'd apprecaite any and all advice people have to give including
recommendations on super automatics or grinders depending on your
ultimate opinion. My grinder budget is $400. (I realized this is far
less than what I'd spend on the super but I can't convince the hubby
to spend more than that on a grinder.)

Thanks!





 
Date: 10 Mar 2007 03:27:36
From: Jasonian
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 7, 7:03 pm, hazzmat
<hazz...@unitedstatesgovernmentbellsouth.net > wrote:
> On Wed, 07 2007 18:35:26 -0600, Lloyd Parsons wrote:
> > In article <1173313171.104777.6...@s48g2000cws.googlegroups.com>,
> > "TS Buhr" <tsb...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> >> Thanks for the recommendation. What about the Ascaso I1. I see it is
> >> on sale a few places for $275. The I2 is $215. The I1 has flat
> >> grinders and the I2 conical. Is one better than the other?
>
> >> Also, while I've got your attention, what about the Gaggia MDF? I had
> >> always considered that one...matches the Gaggia Espresso and all.
> >> Thanks!!
> >> -Tami
>
> >> On 7, 4:42 pm, Lloyd Parsons <lloydpars...@mac.com> wrote:
> >> > In article <1173302207.966148.160...@30g2000cwc.googlegroups.com>,
>
> >> > And if you don't want to spend that much for an excellent grinder, look
> >> > at the Ascaso line. Check the reviews and you will be pleasantly
> >> > surprised at how well they perform. They are in the $200-$250 price
> >> > range. I have the Ascaso I2 Conical burr grinder and am very pleased
> >> > with it. Grinds as good as the Mazzers and Macaps, but not quite as
> >> > sturdy. I think in the home use, they would last as long as you really
> >> > would want them to.
>
> > I liked the idea of conical burrs, so the I2 was the obvious choice for
> > me. I've seen comments and reviews that indicate the I1 is as good, if
> > not slightly better than the I2.
>
> > As to the Gaggia MDF. I had one and it is a fine, low-end grinder.
> > IMO, the major drawback is that it is stepped and the steps are a bit
> > far apart.
>
> > That said, if you are going to do grinds for espresso and also for other
> > things like drip or French Press, then the Ascaso is a horrible choice
> > because changing the grind setting much is real excercise because of
> > that worm-gear adjuster. The Gaggia would make a better choice in that
> > instance.
>
> I have been advised that the main difference between the Gaggia MDF and
> Rancilio Rocky was not so much in the quality of the grind but in the
> number of adjustment steps for changing the grind, which favored the
> Rocky. I can't vouch for the quality comparison but I thought people with
> Gaggia MDFs or considering the MDF would be interested in some howto
> instructs for making the Gaggia grinder stepless:
>
> http://coffeeaspirations.blogspot.com/2006/07/barista-guild-of-americ...
>
> I have no experience with the MDF grinder, nor with this modification.
>
> --
> Get Big Brother out of my email to reply.

I do, as that's my how-to you've linked.

I'll say that the mod has pretty much alleviated most of my major
complaints about the MDF. The second major one being the doser, which
I have since come to love, since its presence helps significantly to
reduce clumping when used right.

The only other complaint I have is the PF fork, as it sits pretty
close to the dosing exit hole, making "focusing on the landing" quite
difficult.

However, I traced a click to that very article back to this thread,
with a how-to on removing the PF fork in a reversible manner. Check
the frankenstein MDF while you're there. http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1167433239

BTW, I personally would avoid a superauto at all costs.



 
Date: davebobblane@gmai
From: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
Subject: .com>
.com

 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 13:48:33
From: chardinej
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8, 5:08 pm, pltrgyst <pltrg...@spamlessxhost.org > wrote:
> On 8 2007 09:53:03 -0800, "daveb" <davebobbl...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> >.... The fiddly things are dealt with by the "human
> >> factor" in the process- dialing in a grinder, dosing, tamping,
> >> temperature surfing, flushing group head, removing grinds from filter,
> >> cleaning etc.
>
> >Exactly! and a LOT of people, right or wrong do NOT want to deal with
> >that.
>
> Exactly. To serve again as a counterpoint, we drink drip every morning, and
> espresso most evenings after the supper wine is finished. We have zero interest
> in cappucino or anything else frothed.
>
> We already had the Krups drip machine and a $1200 grinder.
>
> I started out with a Delonghi with automatic tamping, then to a Gaggia Classic.
> Nice machine, made great espresso -- but water tank egress was a PITA, and my
> wife didn't want to cope with it ever.
>
> Had a good experience with a friend's Jura in Vienna, Austria, so we first tried
> a Saeco Vienna (coincidence). IMO, piece of shit, never could get a decent cup
> of anything out of it. It went back.
>
> So I bought a Jura/Capresso (C1500?). I found that in order to get anything
> drinkable, I had to set the grinder to its finest setting, set water volume to
> minimum (30ml), and hold the brew/strength button in for about three seconds
> every time (to "strong" and then to "extra"). Doing this with cups pre-heated in
> the microwave (half-full of water, 60 seconds on high) yields a very good single
> espresso. A double requires two cycles.
>
> We use locally roasted beans and beans from Baltimore Coffee & Tea, in a variety
> of French, full-city and dark medium roasts. All work acceptably.
>
> We're happy with this. All it will do acceptably is make a single espresso at a
> time, but that meets our needs. The machine sits close enough to our sink that
> we don't even have to remove the water reservoir -- just pull the spigot over
> and fill 'er up. The machine heats to ready from cold in about two minutes while
> you're pre-heating the cups; 15-second rinse cycle, push and hold a button
> twice, and you've got a very acceptable espresso. My wife will now do this for
> herself if I'm not around.
>
> The Jura has been going for almost three years now with only a cleaning tablet
> about every six months, and it tells you when it needs that. Never a burp
> otherwise, and we can have decent espresso any time, within four minutes or so
> of getting the urge. Apart from living next door to a coffee house, I find that
> unbeatable -- for us.
>
> If it dies, I'll replace it with another Jura unless something else seems
> better. The Gaggia has been in the closet for two years now. It likes it there.
> 8;)
>
> -- Larry

Sounds like you are doing some pretty fiddly things with your super-
automatic to get a decent drink so not sure in your case what the
advantage might be. And all that for the princely sum of $1700 Can
(just Googled it, your price may be lower). You obviously like your
machine and to each her/his own!

John



  
Date: 08 Mar 2007 22:49:26
From: pltrgyst
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8 2007 13:48:33 -0800, "chardinej" <chardine@nbnet.nb.ca > wrote:

>Sounds like you are doing some pretty fiddly things with your super-
>automatic to get a decent drink so not sure in your case what the
>advantage might be. And all that for the princely sum of $1700 Can
>(just Googled it, your price may be lower). You obviously like your
>machine and to each her/his own!

It cost us 1100. As to fiddly, I just leave it on finest grind all the time. The
only thing I have to remember to do is hold the "go" button in as it cycles from
normal - > strong-> extra. That's it. The advantage is that it's easy for either
me or my wife to do that -- no grinding, measuring, tamping, long warm-up, etc.

It works for us. Maybe not for anyone else in this group, but that's what ymmv
is for. 8;)

-- Larry


 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 09:57:40
From: daveb
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8, 12:15 pm, "chardinej" <chard...@nbnet.nb.ca > wrote:
> On 8, 10:09 am, "daveb" <davebobbl...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > rather than stepping into the minefield of
>
> > > super automatics.
>
> > > John
>
> > ". . . the minefield of super automatics."
>
> > the WHAT??
>
> > SOME people like 'em, John.
>
> > I don't sell 'em, I just fix 'em
>
> > Davewww.hitechespresso.com
>
> Grinding coffee and making espresso or any sort of coffee for that
> matter is basically a simple process. The hardware we need to do this
> is pretty basic. The fiddly things are dealt with by the "human
> factor" in the process- dialing in a grinder, dosing, tamping,
> temperature surfing, flushing group head, removing grinds from filter,
> cleaning etc. Machines such a super-automatic espresso makers might be
> able to cover this well, but they need a significant "complexity
> overhead" to accomplish these tasks, and therein lies the minefield of
> breakdowns, service and the cost of a quality machine itself.
>
> John

> Grinding coffee and making espresso or any sort of coffee for that
> matter is basically a simple process. The hardware we need to do this
> is pretty basic. The fiddly things are dealt with by the "human
> factor" in the process- dialing in a grinder, dosing, tamping,
> temperature surfing, flushing group head, removing grinds from filter,
> cleaning etc.

Exactly! and a LOT of people, right or wrong do NOT want to deal with
that.



Machines such a super-automatic espresso makers might be
> able to cover this well, but they need a significant "complexity
> overhead" to accomplish these tasks, and therein lies the minefield of
> breakdowns, service and the cost of a quality machine itself.

Certainly there is a lot going on inside them -- I work on 'em every
day and they can be a royal PITA!! -- I would not own one.

but IF they receive normal care and cleaning -- (a very big IF, ask
any auto mechanic) they can serve VERY capably.

without mines. and at a cost very competitive with manuals -- i.e.
$200 grinder and $400 machine. with the bonus of quite accurate
electronic temperature control, NOT a button t'stat!

dave



 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 09:53:03
From: daveb
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8, 12:15 pm, "chardinej" <chard...@nbnet.nb.ca > wrote:
> On 8, 10:09 am, "daveb" <davebobbl...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > rather than stepping into the minefield of
>
> > > super automatics.
>
> > > John
>
> > ". . . the minefield of super automatics."
>
> > the WHAT??
>
> > SOME people like 'em, John.
>
> > I don't sell 'em, I just fix 'em
>
> > Davewww.hitechespresso.com
>
> Grinding coffee and making espresso or any sort of coffee for that
> matter is basically a simple process. The hardware we need to do this
> is pretty basic. The fiddly things are dealt with by the "human
> factor" in the process- dialing in a grinder, dosing, tamping,
> temperature surfing, flushing group head, removing grinds from filter,
> cleaning etc.

Exactly! and a LOT of people, right or wrong do NOT want to deal with
that.



Machines such a super-automatic espresso makers might be
> able to cover this well, but they need a significant "complexity
> overhead" to accomplish these tasks, and therein lies the minefield of
> breakdowns, service and the cost of a quality machine itself.

Certainly there is a lot going on inside them -- I work on 'em every
day and they can be a royal PITA!! -- I would not own one.

but IF they receive normal care and cleaning -- (a very big IF, ask
any auto mechanic) they can serve VERY capably.

without mines.

dave



  
Date: 08 Mar 2007 16:08:52
From: pltrgyst
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8 2007 09:53:03 -0800, "daveb" <davebobblane@gmail.com > wrote:

>.... The fiddly things are dealt with by the "human
>> factor" in the process- dialing in a grinder, dosing, tamping,
>> temperature surfing, flushing group head, removing grinds from filter,
>> cleaning etc.
>
>Exactly! and a LOT of people, right or wrong do NOT want to deal with
>that.

Exactly. To serve again as a counterpoint, we drink drip every morning, and
espresso most evenings after the supper wine is finished. We have zero interest
in cappucino or anything else frothed.

We already had the Krups drip machine and a $1200 grinder.

I started out with a Delonghi with automatic tamping, then to a Gaggia Classic.
Nice machine, made great espresso -- but water tank egress was a PITA, and my
wife didn't want to cope with it ever.

Had a good experience with a friend's Jura in Vienna, Austria, so we first tried
a Saeco Vienna (coincidence). IMO, piece of shit, never could get a decent cup
of anything out of it. It went back.

So I bought a Jura/Capresso (C1500?). I found that in order to get anything
drinkable, I had to set the grinder to its finest setting, set water volume to
minimum (30ml), and hold the brew/strength button in for about three seconds
every time (to "strong" and then to "extra"). Doing this with cups pre-heated in
the microwave (half-full of water, 60 seconds on high) yields a very good single
espresso. A double requires two cycles.

We use locally roasted beans and beans from Baltimore Coffee & Tea, in a variety
of French, full-city and dark medium roasts. All work acceptably.

We're happy with this. All it will do acceptably is make a single espresso at a
time, but that meets our needs. The machine sits close enough to our sink that
we don't even have to remove the water reservoir -- just pull the spigot over
and fill 'er up. The machine heats to ready from cold in about two minutes while
you're pre-heating the cups; 15-second rinse cycle, push and hold a button
twice, and you've got a very acceptable espresso. My wife will now do this for
herself if I'm not around.

The Jura has been going for almost three years now with only a cleaning tablet
about every six months, and it tells you when it needs that. Never a burp
otherwise, and we can have decent espresso any time, within four minutes or so
of getting the urge. Apart from living next door to a coffee house, I find that
unbeatable -- for us.

If it dies, I'll replace it with another Jura unless something else seems
better. The Gaggia has been in the closet for two years now. It likes it there.
8;)

-- Larry


 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 09:15:53
From: chardinej
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8, 10:09 am, "daveb" <davebobbl...@gmail.com > wrote:
> rather than stepping into the minefield of
>
> > super automatics.
>
> > John
>
> ". . . the minefield of super automatics."
>
> the WHAT??
>
> SOME people like 'em, John.
>
> I don't sell 'em, I just fix 'em
>
> Davewww.hitechespresso.com

Grinding coffee and making espresso or any sort of coffee for that
matter is basically a simple process. The hardware we need to do this
is pretty basic. The fiddly things are dealt with by the "human
factor" in the process- dialing in a grinder, dosing, tamping,
temperature surfing, flushing group head, removing grinds from filter,
cleaning etc. Machines such a super-automatic espresso makers might be
able to cover this well, but they need a significant "complexity
overhead" to accomplish these tasks, and therein lies the minefield of
breakdowns, service and the cost of a quality machine itself.

John



 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 08:48:23
From: daveb
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 8, 11:44 am, "Charter" <jpdavis...@myway.com > wrote:
> I went the way of the Super Auto for about 3 weeks and then returned it and
> got a Mini Mazzer to go with the SL 70 I already had.
>
> I liked the convenience but the coffee and particularly the espresso was
> never as good as I could make with a espresso machine.
> I'm not real discriminating but it never seemed to have the same "body".
> I tried various beans, grinds, roasts, etc.
>
> Jeff
>
No doubt about that. I love my MM. (espesially before the price
increase)

just that not all have the same tastes -- and that is OK too.

dave





 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 10:44:33
From: Charter
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
I went the way of the Super Auto for about 3 weeks and then returned it and
got a Mini Mazzer to go with the SL 70 I already had.

I liked the convenience but the coffee and particularly the espresso was
never as good as I could make with a espresso machine.
I'm not real discriminating but it never seemed to have the same "body".
I tried various beans, grinds, roasts, etc.

Jeff


"TS Buhr" <tsbuhr@gmail.com > wrote in message
news:1173300647.104425.30140@v33g2000cwv.googlegroups.com...
>I currently have a Gaggia Espresso and have no complaints about the
> performance of the machine itself. The problem is I need a grinder. I
> have that horrible Bodum Antigua grinder and it obviously isn't up to
> snuff. (Have had it a long time...before the Gaggia...got it for drip
> and french press). I've been delaying getting a new grinder as it
> hasn't been in the budget so I've been having the local Peet's grind
> beans in 1/2 pound batches for me. The main problem is inconsistency.
> The same setting on their grinder gives me different results (same
> blend/roast everytime). I've about had it and am ready to blow some
> bucks to improve the situation.
>
> The thing is, I'm not real fond of the hassle/challenge of making the
> perfect cup. I've always been attracted to the idea of a super
> automatic. Given that, I've been thinking of putting my grinder money
> towards the purchase of a super automatic. I realize that supers are
> generally frowned upon in this group and can't compare in quality to a
> semi-automatic shot that is done well, but I think I'm okay with that.
> It has to be better than the crap I've been getting out of the Gaggia
> for the past two years due to the poor grind quality. Or is it?
>
> I guess that's my question. My price limit on a super is $1100. Given
> this, would I be paying a lot of money to get the same poor quality
> beverage I've been getting with a bad grind and the Gaggia? Or would
> it be a step up? I realize I could spend less and get a good grinder
> and pair it with my existing Gaggia and produce a better shot with
> some work. But how much better and how much work? I understand that
> for many on this group, perfecting the shot is part of the experience,
> but it really isn't for me. It might be some day but not at this
> point.
>
> I'd apprecaite any and all advice people have to give including
> recommendations on super automatics or grinders depending on your
> ultimate opinion. My grinder budget is $400. (I realized this is far
> less than what I'd spend on the super but I can't convince the hubby
> to spend more than that on a grinder.)
>
> Thanks!
>




 
Date: 08 Mar 2007 04:38:32
From: Miss Penny
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
". . . . the minefield of super automatics."

the WHAT??

SOME people like 'em, John.

I don't sell 'em, I just fix 'em

Dave
www.hitechespresso.com





 
Date: 07 Mar 2007 17:10:10
From: daveb
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 7, 3:50 pm, "TS Buhr" <tsb...@gmail.com > wrote:
> I currently have a Gaggia Espresso and have no complaints about the
> performance of the machine itself. The problem is I need a grinder. I
> have that horrible Bodum Antigua grinder and it obviously isn't up to
> snuff. (Have had it a long time...before the Gaggia...got it for drip
> and french press). I've been delaying getting a new grinder as it
> hasn't been in the budget so I've been having the local Peet's grind
> beans in 1/2 pound batches for me. The main problem is inconsistency.
> The same setting on their grinder gives me different results (same
> blend/roast everytime). I've about had it and am ready to blow some
> bucks to improve the situation.
>
> The thing is, I'm not real fond of the hassle/challenge of making the
> perfect cup. I've always been attracted to the idea of a super
> automatic. Given that, I've been thinking of putting my grinder money
> towards the purchase of a super automatic. I realize that supers are
> generally frowned upon in this group and can't compare in quality to a
> semi-automatic shot that is done well, but I think I'm okay with that.
> It has to be better than the crap I've been getting out of the Gaggia
> for the past two years due to the poor grind quality. Or is it?
>
> I guess that's my question. My price limit on a super is $1100. Given
> this, would I be paying a lot of money to get the same poor quality
> beverage I've been getting with a bad grind and the Gaggia? Or would
> it be a step up? I realize I could spend less and get a good grinder
> and pair it with my existing Gaggia and produce a better shot with
> some work. But how much better and how much work? I understand that
> for many on this group, perfecting the shot is part of the experience,
> but it really isn't for me. It might be some day but not at this
> point.
>
> I'd apprecaite any and all advice people have to give including
> recommendations on super automatics or grinders depending on your
> ultimate opinion. My grinder budget is $400. (I realized this is far
> less than what I'd spend on the super but I can't convince the hubby
> to spend more than that on a grinder.)
>
> Thanks!

If you don't like the hassle of hand making espresso -- supers can
deliver a good cup, partly because the grinder is better than your old
one.

a good Saeco (or Gaggia super -- same thing) can be had for about 500
to 600, more than that buys very LITTLE difference.

enjoy.

Dave



 
Date: 07 Mar 2007 16:19:31
From: TS Buhr
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
Thanks for the recommendation. What about the Ascaso I1. I see it is
on sale a few places for $275. The I2 is $215. The I1 has flat
grinders and the I2 conical. Is one better than the other?

Also, while I've got your attention, what about the Gaggia MDF? I had
always considered that one...matches the Gaggia Espresso and all.
Thanks!!
-Tami

On 7, 4:42 pm, Lloyd Parsons <lloydpars...@mac.com > wrote:
> In article <1173302207.966148.160...@30g2000cwc.googlegroups.com>,
>

>
> And if you don't want to spend that much for an excellent grinder, look
> at the Ascaso line. Check the reviews and you will be pleasantly
> surprised at how well they perform. They are in the $200-$250 price
> range. I have the Ascaso I2 Conical burr grinder and am very pleased
> with it. Grinds as good as the Mazzers and Macaps, but not quite as
> sturdy. I think in the home use, they would last as long as you really
> would want them to.




  
Date: 07 Mar 2007 18:35:26
From: Lloyd Parsons
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
In article <1173313171.104777.6620@s48g2000cws.googlegroups.com >,
"TS Buhr" <tsbuhr@gmail.com > wrote:

> Thanks for the recommendation. What about the Ascaso I1. I see it is
> on sale a few places for $275. The I2 is $215. The I1 has flat
> grinders and the I2 conical. Is one better than the other?
>
> Also, while I've got your attention, what about the Gaggia MDF? I had
> always considered that one...matches the Gaggia Espresso and all.
> Thanks!!
> -Tami
>
> On 7, 4:42 pm, Lloyd Parsons <lloydpars...@mac.com> wrote:
> > In article <1173302207.966148.160...@30g2000cwc.googlegroups.com>,
> >
>
> >
> > And if you don't want to spend that much for an excellent grinder, look
> > at the Ascaso line. Check the reviews and you will be pleasantly
> > surprised at how well they perform. They are in the $200-$250 price
> > range. I have the Ascaso I2 Conical burr grinder and am very pleased
> > with it. Grinds as good as the Mazzers and Macaps, but not quite as
> > sturdy. I think in the home use, they would last as long as you really
> > would want them to.

I liked the idea of conical burrs, so the I2 was the obvious choice for
me. I've seen comments and reviews that indicate the I1 is as good, if
not slightly better than the I2.

As to the Gaggia MDF. I had one and it is a fine, low-end grinder.
IMO, the major drawback is that it is stepped and the steps are a bit
far apart.

That said, if you are going to do grinds for espresso and also for other
things like drip or French Press, then the Ascaso is a horrible choice
because changing the grind setting much is real excercise because of
that worm-gear adjuster. The Gaggia would make a better choice in that
instance.


   
Date: 07 Mar 2007 16:56:53
From: John S.
Subject: Re: Moka Pot VS Brikka Pot VS Espresso
On 7, 6:48 pm, "lulu" <bulliefor...@gmail.com > wrote:
> Well John I would love to spoon out the extra $80 for the Brikka to
> test but thn I feel those few bits of test funds could have been used
> on a 'better?' machine. Tally in an extra $100 to get the Gaggia or
> Saeco and it might give a cheaper thrill for the extra dig.

There will always be a better coffee maker than the one you have.
Because you already have a Moka pot it would not seem to make much
sense to buy a Brikka unless you have a need for two pots. The real
question that only you can determine the answer to is whether moka
coffee is satisfactory or not. If not then spend some more money on a
decent espresso machine. Otherwise just keep brewing with your
current moka pot.


>
> It's bang the coffee buck in comparison to my Moka and which affords
> the better value. Especially for someone such as myself who drown
> such things in rich deep sugars; Muscovada and yep at times thick as
> limbs clotted cream. Lulu




 
Date: 07 Mar 2007 21:23:32
From: Robert Harmon
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
Howdy M'am!
You're in for a surprise when you learn just how easy it is to make shots
that'll blow your mind (without blowing your budget). $400 will get you a
very good grinder - I'd recommend a commercial Mazzer or similar (used on
eBay for $200ish plus $40 for new burrs). Spend the remainder on getting the
Espresso cleaned & tuned. Quality espresso (not necessarily God shots) are
no effort at all, once you have the right combo of beans, grinder, espresso
machine, & technique.
--
Robert (Give a bum a buck & he'll buy a drink; buy him the bottle & you
won't see him again for a week at least!) Harmon
http://tinyurl.com/pou2y
http://tinyurl.com/psfob
http://tinyurl.com/fkd6r

"TS Buhr" <tsbuhr@gmail.com > wrote in message
news:1173300647.104425.30140@v33g2000cwv.googlegroups.com...
>I currently have a Gaggia Espresso and have no complaints about the
> performance of the machine itself. The problem is I need a grinder. I
> have that horrible Bodum Antigua grinder and it obviously isn't up to
> snuff. (Have had it a long time...before the Gaggia...got it for drip
> and french press). I've been delaying getting a new grinder as it
> hasn't been in the budget so I've been having the local Peet's grind
> beans in 1/2 pound batches for me. The main problem is inconsistency.
> The same setting on their grinder gives me different results (same
> blend/roast everytime). I've about had it and am ready to blow some
> bucks to improve the situation.
>
> The thing is, I'm not real fond of the hassle/challenge of making the
> perfect cup. I've always been attracted to the idea of a super
> automatic. Given that, I've been thinking of putting my grinder money
> towards the purchase of a super automatic. I realize that supers are
> generally frowned upon in this group and can't compare in quality to a
> semi-automatic shot that is done well, but I think I'm okay with that.
> It has to be better than the crap I've been getting out of the Gaggia
> for the past two years due to the poor grind quality. Or is it?
>
> I guess that's my question. My price limit on a super is $1100. Given
> this, would I be paying a lot of money to get the same poor quality
> beverage I've been getting with a bad grind and the Gaggia? Or would
> it be a step up? I realize I could spend less and get a good grinder
> and pair it with my existing Gaggia and produce a better shot with
> some work. But how much better and how much work? I understand that
> for many on this group, perfecting the shot is part of the experience,
> but it really isn't for me. It might be some day but not at this
> point.
>
> I'd apprecaite any and all advice people have to give including
> recommendations on super automatics or grinders depending on your
> ultimate opinion. My grinder budget is $400. (I realized this is far
> less than what I'd spend on the super but I can't convince the hubby
> to spend more than that on a grinder.)
>
> Thanks!
>




 
Date: 07 Mar 2007 13:16:48
From: chardinej
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
On 7, 4:50 pm, "TS Buhr" <tsb...@gmail.com > wrote:
> I currently have a Gaggia Espresso and have no complaints about the
> performance of the machine itself. The problem is I need a grinder. I
> have that horrible Bodum Antigua grinder and it obviously isn't up to
> snuff. (Have had it a long time...before the Gaggia...got it for drip
> and french press). I've been delaying getting a new grinder as it
> hasn't been in the budget so I've been having the local Peet's grind
> beans in 1/2 pound batches for me. The main problem is inconsistency.
> The same setting on their grinder gives me different results (same
> blend/roast everytime). I've about had it and am ready to blow some
> bucks to improve the situation.
>
> The thing is, I'm not real fond of the hassle/challenge of making the
> perfect cup. I've always been attracted to the idea of a super
> automatic. Given that, I've been thinking of putting my grinder money
> towards the purchase of a super automatic. I realize that supers are
> generally frowned upon in this group and can't compare in quality to a
> semi-automatic shot that is done well, but I think I'm okay with that.
> It has to be better than the crap I've been getting out of the Gaggia
> for the past two years due to the poor grind quality. Or is it?
>
> I guess that's my question. My price limit on a super is $1100. Given
> this, would I be paying a lot of money to get the same poor quality
> beverage I've been getting with a bad grind and the Gaggia? Or would
> it be a step up? I realize I could spend less and get a good grinder
> and pair it with my existing Gaggia and produce a better shot with
> some work. But how much better and how much work? I understand that
> for many on this group, perfecting the shot is part of the experience,
> but it really isn't for me. It might be some day but not at this
> point.
>
> I'd apprecaite any and all advice people have to give including
> recommendations on super automatics or grinders depending on your
> ultimate opinion. My grinder budget is $400. (I realized this is far
> less than what I'd spend on the super but I can't convince the hubby
> to spend more than that on a grinder.)
>
> Thanks!

You could purchase a Mazzer mini for a little over $400 US and you
would have a top-of-the-line grinder that would last you a very long
time. I have a mini and it's excellent. There are cheaper grinders
that would perform well too. In other words your budget is "do-able"
for a quality grinder. You say you have no complaints about the Gaggia
so why not go this route rather than stepping into the minefield of
super automatics.

John



  
Date: 08 Mar 2007 09:09:54
From: daveb
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
rather than stepping into the minefield of
> super automatics.
>
> John
>

". . . the minefield of super automatics."

the WHAT??


SOME people like 'em, John.


I don't sell 'em, I just fix 'em


Dave
www.hitechespresso.com




  
Date: 07 Mar 2007 15:42:27
From: Lloyd Parsons
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
In article <1173302207.966148.160630@30g2000cwc.googlegroups.com >,
"chardinej" <chardine@nbnet.nb.ca > wrote:

> On 7, 4:50 pm, "TS Buhr" <tsb...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > I currently have a Gaggia Espresso and have no complaints about the
> > performance of the machine itself. The problem is I need a grinder. I
> > have that horrible Bodum Antigua grinder and it obviously isn't up to
> > snuff. (Have had it a long time...before the Gaggia...got it for drip
> > and french press). I've been delaying getting a new grinder as it
> > hasn't been in the budget so I've been having the local Peet's grind
> > beans in 1/2 pound batches for me. The main problem is inconsistency.
> > The same setting on their grinder gives me different results (same
> > blend/roast everytime). I've about had it and am ready to blow some
> > bucks to improve the situation.
> >
> > The thing is, I'm not real fond of the hassle/challenge of making the
> > perfect cup. I've always been attracted to the idea of a super
> > automatic. Given that, I've been thinking of putting my grinder money
> > towards the purchase of a super automatic. I realize that supers are
> > generally frowned upon in this group and can't compare in quality to a
> > semi-automatic shot that is done well, but I think I'm okay with that.
> > It has to be better than the crap I've been getting out of the Gaggia
> > for the past two years due to the poor grind quality. Or is it?
> >
> > I guess that's my question. My price limit on a super is $1100. Given
> > this, would I be paying a lot of money to get the same poor quality
> > beverage I've been getting with a bad grind and the Gaggia? Or would
> > it be a step up? I realize I could spend less and get a good grinder
> > and pair it with my existing Gaggia and produce a better shot with
> > some work. But how much better and how much work? I understand that
> > for many on this group, perfecting the shot is part of the experience,
> > but it really isn't for me. It might be some day but not at this
> > point.
> >
> > I'd apprecaite any and all advice people have to give including
> > recommendations on super automatics or grinders depending on your
> > ultimate opinion. My grinder budget is $400. (I realized this is far
> > less than what I'd spend on the super but I can't convince the hubby
> > to spend more than that on a grinder.)
> >
> > Thanks!
>
> You could purchase a Mazzer mini for a little over $400 US and you
> would have a top-of-the-line grinder that would last you a very long
> time. I have a mini and it's excellent. There are cheaper grinders
> that would perform well too. In other words your budget is "do-able"
> for a quality grinder. You say you have no complaints about the Gaggia
> so why not go this route rather than stepping into the minefield of
> super automatics.
>
> John

And if you don't want to spend that much for an excellent grinder, look
at the Ascaso line. Check the reviews and you will be pleasantly
surprised at how well they perform. They are in the $200-$250 price
range. I have the Ascaso I2 Conical burr grinder and am very pleased
with it. Grinds as good as the Mazzers and Macaps, but not quite as
sturdy. I think in the home use, they would last as long as you really
would want them to.


   
Date: 07 Mar 2007 23:19:54
From: Robert Harmon
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
Howdy Lloyd!
Just out of curiosity, did you actually do comparison tests of the grinders
& if so were they all in as-new condition? What methodology did you use,
sieve, microscopic analysis, or other? What quantity of beans did you use in
your tests? I'd be very interested in the results & I wish others who do
tests like you do would post the results.
--
Robert (Gig 'em!) Harmon
http://tinyurl.com/pou2y
http://tinyurl.com/psfob
http://tinyurl.com/fkd6r

"Lloyd Parsons" <lloydparsons@mac.com > wrote in message
news:lloydparsons-7E3B6F.15422707032007@individual.net...

I have the Ascaso I2 Conical burr grinder and am very pleased
> with it. Grinds as good as the Mazzers and Macaps, but not quite as
> sturdy. I think in the home use, they would last as long as you really
> would want them to.




    
Date: 07 Mar 2007 17:53:38
From: Lloyd Parsons
Subject: Re: Super Automatic or Grinder
In article <uMHHh.10140$Jl.7042@newsread3.news.pas.earthlink.net >,
"Robert Harmon" <r_h_harmon@Zhotmail.com > wrote:

> Howdy Lloyd!
> Just out of curiosity, did you actually do comparison tests of the grinders
> & if so were they all in as-new condition? What methodology did you use,
> sieve, microscopic analysis, or other? What quantity of beans did you use in
> your tests? I'd be very interested in the results & I wish others who do
> tests like you do would post the results.

I did some comparison testing when I got the Ascaso. I compared it to
my SuperJolly that just had new burrs installed. But the testing was
very informal, but here is what I observed :

I used 1/4 lb in each grinder of a 3-day rested DP Sidamo.

After grinding I examined each result with a magnifying glass (just
handheld). I could discern no appreciable difference in either the
grind size or consistency between the two machines.

Packing into a portafilter a measured amount produced a puck that
appeared identical. I used a scale when I tamped to try to ensure an
accurate and equal tamp pressure.

Flavor seemed, and this is totally subjective, a tad better from the
Ascaso. But I could have been influenced by what I had been reading in
other reviews. But whatever difference was there, was very slight.

I did this mostly because it was a rainy, cold day and I couldn't go to
the golf course. It was fun to do a comparison, but it sure wasn't
scientific.

I like both the SJ and the I2 and have recommended both of them to
others. The I2 will most likely have a shorter lifespan because it just
isn't the same construction at all that the SJ is. But in the home, it
should last many years, imo. And for those with shorter counter
cabinets, the I2 may fit where the SJ, even with the shorter hopper,
might not.

Before buying the I2 I did do a lot of reading on low-end grinders, and
the Ascaso was getting excellent reviews. The adjuster on the Ascasos
is a worm-gear and allows for very fine adjustment, finer than I can do
on the Mazzer SJ. It is also a bit slower than the SJ, but for doing a
few doubles a day, hardly noticeable. But it surely is noisier!

I guess it could be asked what would using a new SJ have produced? I
think the results would have been similar. With new burrs and good
springs, a used SJ is literally 'new' in the guts that count, imo.