Why do bulk grinders produce a superior grind for non espresso preparation? - Page 8

Coffee preparation techniques besides espresso like pourover.

#71: Post by dutchj »

Hello Dan.

I have a quick question...
I have just purchashed a SPONG No1 grinder and to be honist it could do with a clean, so what are the best ways of doing so?

buy the way im using it for coffee but am going to try it with my organic cocoa beans, these beans, well nibbs are a bit more oilly than coffee i think but dont think that will be a problem.

Thanks and looking forward to your reply... and full wright-up on spong grinders


#72: Post by dutchj »

DJR wrote:I use an old cast iron Arcade No. 3 grinder from probably around 1900. I got it for cheap ($10.00) on Ebay because it didn't have the the glass globe or catcher cup, neither of which I wanted. You can get them anytime for less than $25.00 I mounted it on my wall.

To make drip using a "Clever Dripper" I add 4 scoops of beans and turn the handle, holding a No. 4 filter under the grinder to catch the grinds. It takes about 35 turns to do all four scoops (less than 30 seconds). Back turn a couple times. NO grind retention that is measurable!

Quality is very high, adjustment stepless (basically) and no maintenance, cleaning, changing burrs etc etc and no motor noise.

The burrs by the way are about 3.5" in diameter, which is substantial enough.

I can't imagine doing it any other way for a No. 4 filter.

BTW, I have been carefully testing Spong grinders and am using a No. 3 Spong for espresso with my La Peppina. It can easily grind fine enough. It takes 30 turns (this one is clamped to my counter), the burr almost 4 inches in diameter, which would qualify it for a titan, less than 1/10 gm retention measuring before and after.

I can't imagine using an electric for the two espressos I need to make a day. Again, if doing a large volume/party, that would be another matter. If anyone is interested in a detailed writeup on the Spong, let me know and it may motivate me to do a detailed review, pictures etc.

The following are some rough measurements I took from grinders I bought and opened but didn't clean/derust etc. The green numbers are approx sq.mm burr surface area. You can see how puny the Zass is compared to the Spong 2 or 3. Much less efficient.


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cannonfodder (original poster)
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#73: Post by cannonfodder (original poster) »

I dont remember if it was here, or another forum, but there was a member that sold nibs. He has a business doing so. As I recall, roasting in a coffee roaster did not work well due to the higher temperatures and trying to grind the nibs in a coffee grinder resulted in a giant, gooey mess. When nibs are milled to paste, they do not grind them in burrs, they are stone (or stainless steel) rolled in a crushing machine, repeatedly. If you try to grind them in a coffee grinder you may end up gumming up the entire thing.
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#74: Post by ira »

dutchj wrote:Hello Dan.

I have a quick question...
I have just purchashed a SPONG No1 grinder and to be honist it could do with a clean, so what are the best ways of doing so?

Thanks and looking forward to your reply... and full wright-up on spong grinders
My Spong has 3 screws holding it together and one holding on the handle, take those out and it just comes apart.



#75: Post by Bane »

dutchj wrote:well nibbs are a bit more oilly than coffee i think but dont think that will be a problem.

That's quite an understatement. Cocoa beans contain appr. 50% fat. grinding them in any coffee grinder is a rather bad idea, since friction heat will melt the cocoa fat and the whole thing will just clog your grinder.

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#76: Post by Pale Rider »

JohnB. wrote:The Ditting burrs cost about $70 more then a set of stock Bunn burrs. No modifications to the grinder are required & the mounting holes share the same spacing as the stock burrs. You will need a spacer ring to replicate the spacer portion of the inner Bunn burr that is part of the stock burr casting. I had a stainless ring machined & can supply these either installed on your burr or separate if there is enough interest in the conversion to warrant running off a batch. Once the spacer is installed on the Ditting "Top" burr it is a bolt on conversion requiring nothing more then resetting your zero point.

I'll post some pics & more details in a separate thread next week after I run the seasoning beans through & pull the burrs for cleaning. I'll also post some pics & details of the stepless mod in the same thread.

I just picked up two Bunn grinders, one for home and one for office, for brewed coffee, and I am definitely interested in the spacer rings. Question: I just started looking, but where did you pick up your KF804 burrs?

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#77: Post by JohnB. »

My burrs came from Ditting USA but I purchased them through a helpful coffee equipment dealer who got them for me as a favor. They did ask him for the 804's serial number which he obviously didn't have but finally agreed to sell him the burrs. My suggestion would be to try buying the burrs through a Ditting dealer. Make sure you are getting the "machined" burrs that came out in 2009 & not the original "pressed" style.

Spacer rings: I called around & found a small machine shop that would do small one off jobs & brought them the inner Bunn burr & the "Top" 804 burr. The machinist made a spacer ring from stainless steel & shrink fitted (heated ring/froze burr-pressed together) it to my Ditting burr. Check in your area & I'm sure you'll find someone that will take on the job.

The Ditting burrs are marked Top & Bottom. The Top burr is your fixed or inner burr on the Bunn & the Bottom burr goes in the outer Bunn burr carrier which is driven by the auger/motor shaft assy. The 804 burrs share the same mounting hole spacing as the Bunn burrs so they will mount with no modifications outside of adding the spacer ring to the inner burr. You will have to reuse the stock Bunn mounting screws as the screws that come with the Ditting burrs will not work.

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#78: Post by mitch236 »

A quick question. There is chance for me to get a FPG-2 (Dan posted a link to CG). I assume based on my reading of the website that it uses the same burrset as the LPG that John has swapped out to Ditting burrs. Does anyone know whether the two grinders (LPG and FPG-2) are indeed the same burrset?

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#79: Post by JohnB. »

I did the Ditting burr swap with a G3 not the LPG. That said I believe that the G series, LPG & the FPG-2 all use the same size/style burr set.


#80: Post by tinseljim »

Thank you all for this thread and the contributions. Sorry haven't posted for a while - but didn't have much to report.

Anyways I waited for the ebay gods to produce a ditting 804 and after about a year of waiting I now have one. it was about a year old and just missed out on having the machined burrs. So the problem is it has the pressed burrs rather than the machined ones. two quick questions:

1) Is there just one type of machined burr or are there several, as hinted at in the marco ubergrinder blog? and where to buy (i'm in the UK and haven't had much luck with the normal avenues)
2) does anyone want the pressed burrs that are actually in very good nick (<100 lbs. of coffee or 0.7% of its life) - any reasonable offer accepted once the newer burrs arrive!

thank you,