La Marzocco GS3 - Basket and Gasket

Recommendations for espresso equipment buyers and upgraders.

#1: Post by SurJones » Jan 10, 2020, 9:28 pm

What Baskets are you using and why? (I typically use Double Shot Baskets because it helps me stretch my Roast over the week) BUT open if there's something better even if I should overdose - etc etc etc.

I know that the Grouphead gasket might be an easier question :)


#2: Post by SurJones » Jan 16, 2020, 12:42 pm


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#3: Post by Jake_G » Jan 16, 2020, 1:54 pm

Use the Cafelat gasket. I use the IMS shower screen, but pick whichever one you like.

I use Rancilio precision baskets because I bought them when i had my 2 group S20 MIDI CD, they're cheap, high quality and work well. I use the "103" 18g basket and dose between 16.5g and 19g, depending on the degree of roast and bean density. 18g is my standard. The shower screen bolt is your litmus test for dose. When your dose is correct.l, you should see a small imprint of the screw when you lock in the portafilter and pull it right back out. If you have a big hole in the middle of your puck, you're dosing too much. I really could care less if there is a hole in the middle of my finished puck, and there generally is.

Espresso Parts HQ14 is another great basket with a strong reputation. It is a lower extraction basket that is great for 90% or more of the coffees out there. It holds 18g easily in most cases.

LM Strada baskets are rebadged VST baskets with 1g less recommended dose on account of the LM headspace vs an E61. LM Strada 17g is a VST 18g.

VST/ IMS/ Pullman, I am not particularly interested in but they work fine for many and many swear by their preferred basket. Once you find what suits your tastes, I suggest you just go with it. My personal opinion, especially with a profiling machine, is that the extraction space and range of outcomes is so large that playing musical baskets to try and find the perfect extraction is a bit of an uphill battle. Many folks I know simply use the HQ14 for everything or VST 18g for everything. A few use one or the other, depending on the outcome of the first couple shots with a new coffee.

The point is that you have to reach some level of consistency before you can really develop the intuition to say "this shot I just pulled was as good as this basket can get me. I need to use that basket over there to get more of this flavor and less of that flavor." I can't pretend to be that good yet, so I just stick with my cheap basket that performs consistently for me. Some day, I'll branch out.

I will say that the stock LM "non-strada" 17g basket is rubbish for my uses. But that's because my tamper doesn't fit past the ridge, which leaves my with not enough headspace and the hole pattern is visibly bad. Likewise, I think triple baskets are generally rubbish. Not that they are poorly manufactured, just that I enjoy coffee that would be hideously under-extracted if I tried using a triple basket, so I don't.


- Jake

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#4: Post by blondica73 » Jan 16, 2020, 2:56 pm

I have a Linea Mini and played with stock La Marzocco, VST and BaristaPro IMS baskets. I can definetly tell the difference in grind/taste between the stock LM and the VST/IMS baskets, as I needed to grind finer for the VST and the IMS baskets. The VST and IMS baskets seem similar, shot pulled within 1 sec of each other, all other variables kept constant. I still have the stock LM screen.


#5: Post by SurJones » Jan 16, 2020, 4:58 pm

Great thanks both of you - I went ahead and placed my Order - Hopefully this helps anyone Searching as well :)

Let me know if you see any issues with it for my GS3 :)

IMS Competition E-61 Precision Filter Ridgeless Basket 18/22 g ... UTF8&psc=1

Cafelat Silicone Group Gasket (La Marzocco Blue) ... UTF8&psc=1

Ullman Devices No.1820 Utility Packing Hook with Magnetic Pick-Up Handle, 7" ... UTF8&psc=1

La Marzocco Group Head Diffuser Screw ... UTF8&psc=1

IMS Competition Precision Shower Screen For La Marzocco - MA 200 IM ... UTF8&psc=1