Need help choosing 98mm flat burr grinder

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
HoyaZot

#1: Post by HoyaZot »

I have tried googling. The results are all spam.

I am leaning towards a P100. I like the single dose workflow and I am enjoying light roast coffees lately as espresso and I'm hitting the limits of my niche. But I love its workflow. So it seems like the P100 would be the endgame.

Are there other 98mm grinders I should consider? I have heard (but don't have a source) that these grinders are often using the same burrs?

Thanks

prust
Supporter ♡

#2: Post by prust »

I have the P100 and it is great. Very easy workflow. No need for RDT in the summer. It has a self purge function at the end of the grind that expels any residual ground coffee. Best workflow of any grinder I have owned.

User avatar
Jeff
Team HB

#3: Post by Jeff »

The first question is why straight into a 98 mm, flat-burr grinder, coming from an Oracle? Do you know what you're getting into?

They aren't silver bullets for espresso, nor do they tend to treat imperfect puck prep or extraction skills very kindly. I could see ordering a P64 (at least a year out for US buyers, though a handful "appeared" yesterday and disappeared just as quickly) or a P100 (probably several months out) and getting something more forgiving in the mean time to understand how grinders behave and what you might want in the future. Plenty of time to decide that you really don't want to spend thousands to get a highly detailed rendering of all the baked, ashy, smoky, dank flavors that often hide beneath the chocolate and nuts of a comfort blend.

At least right now, the P100 is one of the more available 98 mm grinders. It takes "standard" 98 mm burrs, typically SSP. There are two that seem to be the most popular for espresso, the 98 HU and the 98 LU. Note that the 64 mm naming is very different, with the 64 MP being similar to the 98 HU. There is also a 98 ULF, but I don't read as much about that for espresso.

Unfortunately, the LeverCraft Ultra is no longer in production due to some supply-chain issues related to delivery of parts. The LeverCraft version was not only 120 V, but had some significant improvements in design and execution over the original version.

There is also the Kafatek Flat Max. They now have their own burr series in 98 mm.

Two other options are the Titus Nautilus and the Mahlkonig EK43. They seem to be less popular in the US. Titus grinders are beautiful, but expensive and need to be imported from Europe. The EK43 is massive.

HoyaZot (original poster)

#4: Post by HoyaZot (original poster) »

Jeff wrote:The first question is why straight into a 98 mm, flat-burr grinder, coming from an Oracle? Do you know what you're getting into?
guess I need to update my profile. I have had a v2 Bianca and the Niche mentioned in the OP for a while.

Plenty of time to decide that you really don't want to spend thousands to get a highly detailed rendering of all the baked, ashy, smoky, dank flavors that often hide beneath the chocolate and nuts of a comfort blend.


I mentioned light roasts in my post, but I meant really light. I have been pulling espresso for the last year or so from natural process light roasts and getting some really good extractions with lots of fruit etc. But with more difficult coffees, sometimes with larger size beans, the niche starts to struggle. So for those coffees it's time to go to flat burrs. Maybe I don't need to go to 98mm right away, but I lost enough money offloading my Oracle to know the true cost of buying the wrong equipment for the job.

User avatar
Jeff
Team HB

#5: Post by Jeff »

I'll apologize and take responsibility for failing to catch that.

If I had to pick a grinder to buy today and I didn't need it here tomorrow, I'd go with a P100 and 98HU burrs. This is based on pulling almost exclusively light-roast espresso, some hands-on with Kafatek, and second-hand information from users of the P100. I don't think you'd "go wrong" with a Flat Max either.

I've got a DF64 with 64 MPs in it and am starting to get used to how it works with my coffee, water, and gear. It's annoying loud and messy, but comparatively cheap (around $600 with 64 MP or 64 Cv2 "sweet"). It is a functional "try before you buy" option, I think. The 64 MPs have been described to me as 90% of the way to the 98 HUs. I've also got an Option-O Mini "Moonshine" on order as well, which I've heard makes espresso that light-roast, 98 HU enthusiasts enjoy. I won't be able to comment on that for a couple of months though.

HoyaZot (original poster)

#6: Post by HoyaZot (original poster) » replying to Jeff »


Ok this is very helpful. And it does sort of confirm my research right now. Thank you

Primacog

#7: Post by Primacog »

The problem almost all the 98mm single dosing grinders seem to have is supply issues as rhey are never in stock. Are all of them made in China and thus subject to the supply chain disruptions that covid has wrought or do they make insufficiently large orders from the factory to fulfil the demand? Or is there any reason?
LMWDP #729

baldheadracing
Team HB

#8: Post by baldheadracing » replying to Primacog »

The Mahlkoenig EK43S and Compak PK100 are in stock in the USA; I just checked at Chris' Coffee.

The MAX, Nautilus, and P100 are built in batches, and demand is such that each batch is pre-sold. The MAX and Nautilus are also hand-built-to-order by one or two people, so there cannot be stock. FWIW, the next P100 pre-order will be on August 5.

AFAIK, none of the 98mm grinders currently available in North America are made in the PRC. The Ultra was/is made in China, but was finished in the USA.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada

mikeTRON

#9: Post by mikeTRON »

Get the one that's available.

/Thread

ShotClock
Supporter ♡

#10: Post by ShotClock »

You should probably also add the Weber EG-1 and Kafatek monolith flat (75mm) to your list. Not 98mm, but should achieve excellent results with light roasts.

If you register for the Kafatek forum, you can find for sale posts, pre order resale posts etc fairly frequently. Easier than the preorder route imo, although you lose out on customization.