Need help choosing a machine (espresso only) - Page 3

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
Tim M (original poster)

#21: Post by Tim M (original poster) »

erik82 wrote:I haven't polshed it in months and it still looks good (though it need a good polish :mrgreen: ). It needs far less polishing then you'd think and descaling takes you only 10minutes for a full descale instead of half a day for and E61. In terms of total time spend on cleaning it's less then a E61 as those big chrome bombs also get dirty and need a lot of cleaning. You'll see everythng on chrome, even more then on brass and copper. But because of the modest size even cleaning doesn't take long. The Strietman has a saturated group due to the open boiler design with superb temperature stability. Build quality is also great and it'll last a very long time with minimal fuss. It's also super easy to pull great shots with.
Thanks for the info. It's definitely an interesting machine.
erik82 wrote: There's information about this and you're partially right as it also works the other way around. That's also the reason why I don't use the 18gr basket in the Strietman as it's way too tall for how wide it is and it really affects extraction. So for a 49mm basket you can go up to 16gr without any problems. With a 58mm filterbasket you can go much higher but still I never liked shots over 18gr in dose. Some brands like Dalla Corta use 54mm because it also works the other way around and they state that 58mm is too wide and the basket too shallow for a good extraction for a 16gr dose. So as long as you use the right filterbaskets and dose you'll be fine.
This is also interesting to read. I really enjoy the mechanics of coffee extraction. It's so multifaceted.

Tim M (original poster)

#22: Post by Tim M (original poster) »

erik82 wrote:No it isn't. You can set the brew pressure but it's not meant to do this all the time and especially not during shots. An OPV isn't made to handle that. And you won't be changing this parameter a lot. Every other E61 can also do this but you need to remove a part of the housing and use a screwdriver. Most here just set it from 11 bar to 8-9 bar and you're good.
That pressure knob is so weird...

erik82 wrote: Keep in mind that with a manual lever you can do every pressure/flow profile you can think of as you're the one pulling on the lever and deciding what it should do. Once you have a bit of experience with them it's incredibly easy.
But I can't draw the same stick figure twice... I feel like I'd always be doubting myself and not my tools. Levers worry me tbh.

Tim M (original poster)

#23: Post by Tim M (original poster) »

Jeff wrote:There are lots of marketing claims made about E61 heat-up times. Sure, you can pull a shot as soon as the boiler is up to temperature. With 4 kg of brass hanging out in the breeze, intentionally spilling heat, warmed only by a trickle of water through the thermosiphon, that isn't going to be up to temperature for a long time. Classic Italian espresso blends survive just about anything. Modern roasts, especially light roasts, are a lot less forgiving. If you're willing to wrap the group head in a towel, you might get down to 20 minutes. Otherwise plan on 30-45 minutes.

I found a video of a guy who plotted the group head temp over time on the Puristika. It takes about 50 mins to stabilise. Or about half an hour if you flush it every few mins. You're correct, ten mins is bullsh**. I was sad when I watched that, happy sad though because I dodged a bullet. Thanks for making me go double check.


#24: Post by erik82 »

Tim M wrote:But I can't draw the same stick figure twice... I feel like I'd always be doubting myself and not my tools. Levers worry me tbh.
Have faith in yourself. I've worked a lot with a Bianca and LM GS3 and with the paddles it's not easier to do a profile exactly the same twice (especially with the GS3) as it is with a manual lever and some experience. Then you need to buy somethng like a decent and program profiles. But even then changes in temperature, humidity and bean aging affect grind and thus extraction so it's never going to be exactly the same shot after shot. We humans are fully capable of becoming very consistent and especially if you put the manometer on the piston it's really easy to do exact profiles time after time. You're overthinking it right now as levers are the most foregiving and easy machnes to pull great shots with.

Tim M (original poster)

#25: Post by Tim M (original poster) replying to erik82 »

Okay I think you've sold me on one... Do you have experience with any other than the Strietman? Does anything else come close for thermal management that doesn't have steam attached?


#26: Post by erik82 »

As far as I know it's the only one except for some very old models which have major drawbacks. The Strietman is a one of a kind in todays market in terms of manual lever without a steaming ability and with superb temperature management. And it has a lot more shot volume then other manual levers.

I do have experience with machines like a La Pavoni and Cremina up to a Strega and Londinium.

Team HB

#27: Post by ira »

Tim M wrote:I want the Decent... I really do. I want to download someone else's profile and have a taste, I really do. I just don't want it for 10k...
I also fear getting stuck in the forums doing more reading and programming and less paid work. That being said, I'm jelly you have one and I hope you get bulk enjoyment from it.
I wish I could tell you that there's lots of discussion of profiles and experiments, maybe one day, but not so much any more. More customer service and requests for access to the decent forum and Discord. Right now there are 25 unread messages, not one has anything to do with making coffee. I probably represent a significant portion of the Decent owners, I found a profile I like and it makes coffee every morning I like and I've not messed with it in months. And probably even odder, I don't use it to make espresso as it makes excellent and very consistent pour over. It's not what I expected, but it consistently makes the best coffee I've had in a while. And the tea basket is killer as s the very short warm up time. With the steam turned off, it's a bit under 3 minutes, short enough I rarely even notice as by the time I get organized to make coffee, it's almost always already warm.

And as has been mentioned, the software tend towards being unfinished. Depending on your sensitivity to that you might not notice at all, or curse Decent for not getting it right and not fixing stuff that's clearly wrong(IMHO).

If you have time to wait, both the Oddesey and the Meticulous might be among the best choices for you with my choice being the Meticulous. But they have to start shipping. I saw both of them at the SCA show and was impressed but both the machines and the developers. The Meticulous will satisfy most of your Decent wants for a lot less money and a developer who seems more open to listening.

Tim M (original poster)

#28: Post by Tim M (original poster) »

Hello all,

In an effort to round out this discussion, provide closure and express some gratitude I thought I should update this thread.

Firstly, I should say that after some discussion with John from Decent I stand corrected, the Decent (for me) is not a 10k machine, it's about $6500 as my requirements are such that the Pro would fill them and my assumptions on the differences between the Pro and XXL were wrong. Thank you John for taking the time to engage with me.

I did a lot of reading about the suggestions that you all made, and I'm very grateful for the places to look and the various heads up because it quickly became obvious that what you read from marketing and what people who have used it say can be very different... and most importantly I think the realisation that depth of my ignorance when it comes to what I can taste the difference between is an abyss that can only be bridged with years of practical study.

So in the end...
I couldn't find a supplier for the Option-O P64 and I CBF waiting on an "approximate" timeline so I bought a Niche Zero.
I bought a Breville Dual Boiler, some VST baskets, a naked portafilter, a WDT and Black Mirror Nano scales.

I've been making shots that taste better than the cafe down the road so I'm considering it a win. Thanks to everyone who helped me out. I look forward to getting to a point I feel like I need something better, right now though I'm loving the speed and repeatability of what I have.




#29: Post by luvmy40 »

A solid set up! This will serve you well for many years. Please be sure to read through the several BDB threads and familiarize yourself with the maintenance requirements. There are not many or onerous in either time or $, but they are critical to keeping your BDB in good health.

I do see that Breville is still marketing the BDB, so maybe my information about it being discontinued was wrong?