EspressoForge - First Impressions - Page 16

Need help with equipment usage or want to share your latest discovery?

#151: Post by jackson6 »

Does it make any difference if you fill the cylinder entirely or partially other than shot volume?


#152: Post by kofi »

I don't think it makes a difference. I tried earlier to fill up to about 7mm from the top and it worked great.

If you leave too much air at the top of the cylinder, then that air will compress before creating pressure. Depending on how much air is in the cylinder, the instant feedback you get when you completely fill the cylinder with water may suffer a bit. Although I did not feel any feedback delay with about 1cm of air.

V2 has more volume than necessary for one espresso. I haven't tried it, but you may get about 1.5oz with V2. With my current HG1 settings, V1 will run out of water by 1oz, at least with dark roasted beans. I've had more than 1oz output with V1 with less fine grinds.

I tried two more shots after my earlier post today. I was able to repeat the same flavors with my current HG1 settings.

For some reason, I find that V2 is a bit more forgiving of time/pressure than V1. I had created a routine with V1 to know at what clock time I needed X amount of pressure. I did this to get the same shot each time. V2 seems to be a bit more forgiving when it comes to the time/pressure ratio.


#153: Post by Derno »

Just thought I'd post an update of my experience with the forge. Let me just say that this device has been a great training tool. The manometer and bottomless porta filter help me to dial in my shots. Recently I have been timing and weighing my shots a found that I was grinding a little too fine. Regardless, this machine is very forgiving of grind size along with other variables. Overal I am a very satisfied V2 user.


#154: Post by kofi »

I took some detailed photos of the two Forges side by side to make a comparison.

As you see from the photos, V2 is considerably taller than V1. The cylinder of V1 does not go to the end of the tube, like V2 does. It's hard to see inside the tube, but there are some metal remains that would have prevented the cylinder from reaching the bottom end, which is probably why the decision was made to cut the V1 cylinder about 1" short. With a smother finish all throughout the cylinder, a bigger volume of water could have been achieved without making the device much taller.

In terms of weight, V1 with its stand is actually heavier that V2 with its stand. This is because V1 stand seems to be made out to iron or similarly heavy material. V2 stand is made out of nylon, which is much lighter. For V1 users who would like to lighten up the Forge setup for traveling, it's worth getting the V2 nylon stand.

V1 = 1292 gr
V1 + metal stand = 1880 gr
V2 = 1458 gr
V2 + nylon stand = 1634 gr

The finish in V1 is actually smoother than V2. You can see from the photos that it appears that V1 is cut with a finer tool.

The rubber tube cover of V2 is a much better finish and it feels very good in the hands. It is very water repellent, which is similar in this regard as V1 black tape. The rubber tube cover is hard to cut straight, as you see in the photos.

The handle in V2 is another improvement as it is larger and feels better when pushing down.

The volume of V2 plate seems smaller. You can see that a metal volume protrudes in the water chamber.

The V2 metal rod length is obviously much longer than V1. There is almost a 9cm difference in height between the two.

My kitchen cabinets are 17" tall. V2 with the basket screwed in does not fit under the cabinet. Removing the basket allows the device to fit under the cabinet.

In terms of portability, V1 is a lot shorter and it'll be easier to throw in a suitcase or backpack.

Supporter ♡

#155: Post by samuellaw178 »

Hi Joseph,

Thanks for sharing those pictures! Certainly much appreciated from a V1 user like me to know what I'm missing(or not). Haha. :D

To be honest, I like the V1 form factor(less the stock handle, which I modded) and aesthetic better, but if V2 performs better, why not?

On another note,

I've picked up a PID-ed Silvia just recently.One conclusion I've got - don't waste your money on entry level machines and get the Forge! :D

If you're drinking milk, it might be better off to pair the Forge with a standalone milk frother. I'm starting to believe there is some other inherent limiting factor even though the pressure and temp are within range for these entry level machines (paired with Compak K10 btw). They're not bad shots per se, but when you are spoiled and have had better....

Believe it or not, my wife prefers the one from the Forge (1oz shot 4 oz microfoam milk) compared to the Silvia, every time. More lingering aftertaste, smoother and more flavor dimension. Initially I didn't quite believe it, the PIDed Silvia has got to at least better Forge once. I did a lot of reading on the Silvia and tried to improve the shot quality. No gain. The Silvia does a formidable milk btw, but the shot, not so much. In term of straight shot (me being the judge), same story, Forge gives a more enjoyable shot and better flavor clarity, and less the harsh edge and 'airy' body from pump machines. WIth Forge, I can do quite close to apple-to-apple comparison, same coffee, same dose, same basket, etc - with both having 58mm baskets (something I can't quite do with Rossa previously).

Mr Forge vs Ms Silvia


#156: Post by MJW »

Sam, those are interesting impressions with the Silvia. Is that your first pump machine?

I'm seeing some red text above, "Time to start a new thread? ..." so I will do that. I had a recipe for threading the ring on to the Forge, something I was having trouble with previously. Also some temperature experiments. Look for a new thread on this forum if you care.

Except for the threading of the ring, the work flow of the Forge surprised me. One can stop the flow and transfer the Forge to the "drip tray" with zero mess. One can partly raise and lower the pump once or twice to pump the water out. Last time I looked there was a small amount of coffee film above the shower screen, but somehow the screen is keeping the tube and piston clean. No reservoir to clean, no drip tray to clean. The less is more thing works for the Forge.

I've had trouble threading the ring on without some trial and error, and also when the device is hot the insulation can become too hot to touch. I hope we can find some better insulation or maybe put a handle on the side of the ring, a little like a real portafilter.



#157: Post by beananimal »

Hello All,
I would like to present some ideas for discussion, as I am impressed of the comparison of the v1 and v2 and I feel the EsForge is a bit trapped between the chairs, thinking in terms of acceptance.

First there are "normal" espresso drinkers who feel it looks a bit like a freaky toy and probably worry about splashing of hot water and where to put the pots needed.

Second there are espresso nerds who don't trust temperature management, about temperature is generally too low and you cannot control it. The statement of the few lovers may not be trustworthy.

I love it, although I had only the chance to use it few days and mostly without gauge - due to a shipment damage ( replacement has been directly started by Andre, without delay, without discussion. Thanks)

1) Ideas to improve the feeling when watching the pictures. (To avoid misunderstandings: I love the handmade style, but I know it is not everybody's style).

The tripod stand is much more solid than it looks like. I would like to see the option for shorter legs (yes, everybody can cut them). Just long enough to handle standard espresso cups under a triple filter. If there were also aluminum tubes, outer diameter 8 or 10 mm to cover the threaded bars, it would more solid and create more "trust".
Maybe a plexiglass cylinder could be a stylish alternative.

The new foam replacing the rubber tape insulates better, but the ends look raw. Is it possible to cover the just theends additionally with the former rubber tape to give it a nice appearance?

Some are worrying about the drips of hot water when filling the EsForge.
Is there any (stylish) drip-catcher as on wine bottles as an option?
Perhaps a flexible foam ring absorbing the drops or a nice gadget.

2) Procedure of preparation.
Up to now pre-heating is typically filling in water, that is handling hot water and needing an extra pot...
Now the idea about heating on a kettle is on stage and I believe this can be a real change.

Water must be heated anyway. So lets say something like a Hario kettle can be used, as a well known and stylish version or just a milk jug. It may have a relative small top opening, so that the EsForge (without filter and lower ring) may stand directly on it. Maybe a disc is necessary to adapt the diameter. Then it could be of silicon or with a soft coating to function as a sealing between kettle and EsForge. Then the steam of the boiling water would fully pass through the e61 shower and pass through the tube as a vent stack. Otherwise it lasts long - as I tried today. (if you are really lucky, you may have a milk jug with a diameter fitting the e61 rubber sealing)

The possible relevant changes I see are:
- you do not need to handle additionally hot water and pots
- you wait 5 - 10 minutes with the kettle and the EsForge on the hot plate, which is not too much to warm up espresso equipment. Just waiting, doing nothing.
- after this you have a quite stable temperature, probably within the standard values
- then you just go on as usual - install the filter with the coffee, put it onto the stand and fill-in the water from the kettle. (one with a small spout, making it easy to fill in)
This may give a quite different picture in the auditorium. It is nothing more than with a common italian mocha pot.
(sorry if I perhaps repeat items already mentioned month ago)

Supporter ♡

#158: Post by samuellaw178 »

MJW wrote:Sam, those are interesting impressions with the Silvia. Is that your first pump machine?
Hi Mike,

Nope, it's not my first pump machine. I've had a Gaggia as my first starter machine (the taste profile of Silvia reminds me of that, fond memory :D ). After the Gaggia about 4 years ago, I've had a NS Oscar, CC1, ECM Giotto, La Cimbali Junior but most my time were with levers.
MJW wrote: One can stop the flow and transfer the Forge to the "drip tray" with zero mess.
We should probably make a video one day about the workflow. After pulling the shot, you actually don't even need a drip tray. Retract the piston and it'll stop the flow. Leave that as is and the piston will stay (at least for V1). When you're ready to clean - with the piston in retracted position, unscrew the basket and knock out the basket. Then over a sink or a waste water collector(if without sink access), remove the piston and the remaining water will gush out, clearing the screen in the process. Wipe the basket & showerscreen with a damp cloth or paper towel, and it's clean for the next shot next day. It actually takes longer to type than to clean the Forge. :oops: It's very easy to keep the Forge clean.


#159: Post by MJW »

samuellaw178 wrote:We should probably make a video one day about the workflow.
That would be supremely helpful. You've really got it down, I'll try out your routine next time.

There's nothing like watching an expert, seeing exactly what they do and don't do, like watching Heather Perry for example.

Which makes me think -- this is sort of directed at Andre -- maybe at some point a World EspressoForge Championship competition could be set up. In general competitions are one way to push quality forward but like I say they work as an education tool also.


#160: Post by MJW »

Hi Peter, there are a bunch of great ideas there.

The legs on the nylon tripod are I believe threaded rods, and if you can find out the size they are very inexpensive if you are willing to buy them yourself. They might not be metric though. I agree the threaded rods don't looks as nice as a chromed rod... maybe a good solution, for anyone who cares to make their own, is to take a brass or aluminum rod and use a die to cut some threads on the end. Alu's light and can be polished up. Aluminum rod is inexpensive in the U.S. from places like speedymetals.

The foam ring to absorb drips is an interesting idea.

I think foam -- the current v2 tube insulator is solid -- would insulate a lot better. PVC foam rubber tubes are <$3 per 6 ft at Mcmaster-Carr.

Your preheat ideas are good, it would be nice if the preheat can can occur while heating the water.