Tamper and distribution tool recommendations - Page 2

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
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cafeIKE
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#11: Post by cafeIKE »

Jeff wrote:This is why "shake and flip" alone is rare among those that obsess over prep. Even if not visible, often the flip makes one side more dense than the other. A healthy stir is probably a good idea, if you're seeing uneven extraction
I definitely don't obsess :!: Obsessive pals often remark something along the lines of "What about ...?"

The Niche flip is definitely an issue as it is 100% inconsistent :?:

So, addition of a dose funnel


Grind directly into basket


Custom Spreaders for various doses & baskets, only two shown :roll:


Tamp & Brew!

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JB90068
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#12: Post by JB90068 »

I'll second using the Bravo tamper. Even with lots of practice with regular tampers it was hit and miss always getting a perfectly level puck. The Bravo tamper removes all pilot error and now I don't have to worry about channeling. I also like how it looks.

The Bravo distributor works well, but I've found that as long as I WDT first, I don't need to use it.

My workflow: grind into a Weber Blind Shaker and then shake, WDT with a Duomo The Eight, tamp with a Bravo tamper set at 27 lbs. This idiot proofs even me.
Head of lifestyle maintenance.

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cafeIKE
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#13: Post by cafeIKE »

Bravo: "The intentional design prevents over tamping to ensure perfect shots."

Poor puck, a wimpy 27 pounds or ≈6psi tamp is gonna get mashed by ≈500 pounds or ≈125psi during extraction.

A slightly off level tamp is not going to cause channeling.

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JB90068
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#14: Post by JB90068 »

cafeIKE wrote:Bravo: "The intentional design prevents over tamping to ensure perfect shots."

Poor puck, a wimpy 27 pounds or ≈6psi tamp is gonna get mashed by ≈500 pounds or ≈125psi during extraction.
Is the industry standard of a 30 lb tamp all that different? There are people that find they get excellent results by using just a leveler and not tamping.
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cafeIKE
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#15: Post by cafeIKE »

There is no industry standard. Schomer proselytized 30 pounds a long while back.

All the fancy tampers are a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.

SandraF

#16: Post by SandraF »

I bought a Lever Craft tool for WDT, and like it a lot. Reasonably priced. Bought the ECM 'funnel' that sits atop my portafilter. It's not magnetic, but it has a bottom that makes it fit well. It stays on well. I have a St Anthonies Industries "wedge" that is adjustable. It's levels out the bed of coffee prior to tamping. The ECM tamper that came with my Synchronika is weighty & works well.

So that's what I got.

Pressino

#17: Post by Pressino »

BaristaBoy E61 wrote:If this is your 1st foray into the palm dozer & tamper world, I'd recommend one of the cheap fully adjustable ones found on Amazon for a trial run before investing heavily. They usually do quite well.
I second this recommendation. I use the following one that I got from Amazon:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B082M ... UTF8&psc=1

It is heavy and very nicely machined. I'm confident it will last many years. It requires a bit of setting up to work with a particular PF basket, but once the distribution and tamping faces are dialed and locked in, you don't need any further adjustments so long as you're using that basket. It's so inexpensive, you could even buy a couple of them for use with single and double or just differently made baskets. The distribution and tamping sides assure a well distributed and level puck.

I've got no vested interest in this model gadget and I'm extremely happy with it. Over the years I've accumulated several tampers, but this has become my go-to puck prep gadget. :D

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Jeff
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#18: Post by Jeff »

Sometimes Ike and I see eye to eye, sometimes not. Like many things in coffee (and other pursuits), context and perspective can change opinions.

I agree that the tamping force, as long as it is sufficient (which is surprisingly light) and results in even compression of the grinds, gets overwhelmed within seconds.

I also agree that if you're using a classic espresso blend that you can basically "pull the doser twice, press it up against the grinder's built-in tamper, lock, and go" and get an acceptable shot. No WDT (since the doser did it), no scale, no fuss. This is part of the intangible magic of an old-school, Italian, master roaster.

With coffees that are more challenging to extract well (lighter roasts, for example), a more-even tamp is often needed to survive the initial pressure ramp. "More even" is just that. Not "exactly 30#", but evenly compressed across the puck and level so that one side of the puck doesn't wet first and become more permeable than other parts of the puck. Yes, you can do that with an old-school tamper and a practiced hand.

I like the Bravo because it is a square-to-basket tamper. For other users of it that have compromised use of fingers, wrist, and arm, that it is also a force-indicating tamper is helpful. For those without the dexterity that we take for granted, the Bravo or The Force have huge advantages.

A square-to-basket tamper for learning the craft of espresso is sort of like an automatic transmission for learning to drive. So many things already going on when you're at a stop sign at partially blind intersection, pointed uphill, with only the roof of some exotic sports car visible in the rear-view mirror, right on your tail. Yes, you may want to learn how a clutch works, but better for another day once you've gotten the basics of the gas pedal and steering wheel down.

DanoM

#19: Post by DanoM »

I haven't actually used my tamper once in over a year!

I finger level the coffee, no WDT as the K10 Grinder + humidity doesn't really need it. Then use one of those inexpensive "distribution" tools to spin & tamp the coffee. The tool I use is over 400g, so it's definitely tamping down the coffee bed. I adjust the depth for dose if necessary, but that's rare. Generally I grind or dose to match the flavor I want. My shots have been terrific, time after time.

Granted, I'm pulling shots on a Strega lever, so pump machines might have different needs.
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cafeIKE
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#20: Post by cafeIKE »

Pressino wrote:you don't need any further adjustments so long as you're using that basket
¿Que?
Every coffee is different and coffees change with time. If I grind ¼ tick coarser and add 0.5g, the basket fill is different.
Jeff wrote:For other users of it that have compromised use of fingers, wrist, and arm, that it is also a force-indicating tamper is helpful. For those without the dexterity that we take for granted, the Bravo or The Force have huge advantages.
Good point.
Jeff wrote:Yes, you can do that with an old-school tamper and a practiced hand.
When I assist neophytes I'm amazed at how many want to grab the tamper like a gear shift and try to tamp on a rocking spouted PF.

Dave 'cannonfodder' Stevens posted this image about 15 years ago.


With the fingers similarly positioned, it's trivial to feel when the tamp is level and force is directed in line with the basket centerline precluding an off level tamp from the get-go.
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