Grind Sifting for Brewed Coffee - Page 8

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.
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#71: Post by yakster »

I was really hoping that the Coffee Notes App got funded in their Kickstarter campaign to produce a grinds analyzer using the built in camera of smart phones. Luckily, the project is still going forward and I hope that once it's released it can help in dialing in hand grinders and comparing grinds across grinders.

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#72: Post by Sardonic_Sardine »

Wow! This thread seems to be right up my alley! I've just read it from the start and love the sort of intellectual and practical developments that have been made in the past few years regarding grind particle size and 'fines' (a rather contentious term it seems!).

I do own a coffee grind sizer, which I bought from Coffee Chemistry ( ... rind-sizer), and have used it sporadically to sift my ground coffee. It actually comes with 19 sizes of screens, though you can only use four or less each time you sieve. The 'tower' is actually made of five separate 'tubes' of acrylic, and you place each screen between these acrylic sections. The problem with it is:

1. It's a massive pain in the ass to sieve the coffee (I actually spend several minutes vigorously sieving and break into a sweat doing so).

2. It's messy as all hell and difficult to clean up after you're done (which is certainly not ideal if you don't want to spend 20 minutes making a coffee and another 20 minutes cleaning up).

3. It's not the most consistent process, and the reproduction of results is difficult (considering the variance in manual sieving).

Below is a picture of when I used two screens (1mm/1000 microns and 250 microns):

So, I think it's a great tool for doing a crude measurement of grind particle distribution, but not so great for when you want to brew coffee. That being said, I did notice a much better tasting cup when I did sieve. I will of course qualify the previous statement by saying that I was using a Hario Skerton mill at the time (with its problematic shaky burr), albeit at a finer setting for a V60 pour over.

Currently, and perhaps this is way, way, way, way, way overkill, I'm considering getting a full set of test sieves and a sieve shaker from Coffeetec ( ... inoren.htm and ... -8inch.htm).

I appear to be some kind of mad coffee 'scientist'. Then again, I do live in a country with a lot of lightning storms, which really adds to the effect...
"Really great things are evident to anybody who's paying attention." - Charles Babinski

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#73: Post by Sardonic_Sardine »

Okay. After looking through as many test sieve shakers that I could find on the inter webs, I've decided that that's just not going to happen. They're expensive ('No kidding!' I hear you say), heavy, and probably (scratch that, definitely) not worthwhile.

Fear not though! It's time to think about some homemade DIY solutions! I found a video of someone who's made their own sieve shaker here:

This could be a viable solution for a more consistent sifting process, which I think was the crux of what I was going for.

I've been looking through online retailers of vibration motors, and will keep folks posted on what I come up with. On a rather hilarious note (and this did cross my mind when I was thinking about the motors), the largest vibration motors that I found on one site ( ... tor-ranges) are used in 'Adult Toys'. :lol: Chuckle.
"Really great things are evident to anybody who's paying attention." - Charles Babinski


#74: Post by jonr »

I would guess that an orbital sander would do a good job. But perhaps developing a home roller grinder would be more useful that sifting.


#75: Post by squaremile »

I found really affordable PVC sieves on ebay that are normally used for plankton, etc. I got a 250u and messed around with it, so there are deals out there.

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#76: Post by TomC replying to squaremile »

These are the ones I first acquired. They work well and don't make your hands smell.
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#77: Post by bigdaub »

You can get the actual sieves for rather cheap. Its the shaker that is expensive. Here is where I get my sieves. It looks like 3" sieves with stainless steel mesh are about $25 each. The trays interlock so all that is needed is a way to clamp them together. I bet a concrete pencil vibrator would work nicely for shaking.

Best of luck