Baratza Vario upgrade w Forté parts

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.

#1: Post by sportbiber »

Hello everybody,

my first post in this forum in which I've been reading for quite a while.

I own a Baratza Vario with a defective motor and today I received a motor/pulley/belt set from the Forté as a replacement part.
The Forté motor already has the D-shaft (thats why I ordered it) but the timing belt has coarser teeth than on my old Vario (built in 2010), so it does not fit the large plastic gear under the grinding chamber.

My first question:
Do the newer Varios have the same coarse toothing on the belt as the Forté or is this a difference between the two models?

Second question:
Are the D-shafts of the Vario motor and the Forté motor of the same size, length and diameter? Can I put a Vario pulley on a Forté motor?

Third question:
Is it possible to install the large plastic gear from the Forté (part no. 1056) so the new belt would fit?

Thanks a lot for support and kind regards from Germany,


#2: Post by DamianWarS replying to sportbiber »

Welcome to HB
I had a question about the motor a while back to baratza and here's what's baratza told me (quoting revelant parts only)

"The Vario and Forte actually use the same motor. The input is in AC voltage, but the transformation process to DC results in a higher number. Amp draw will also change between the models (on paper) due to the burr differences - the Vario defaults to ceramic burrs which draw lower amperage when driven by our motor (and also grinding coffee).

I've found baratza support to be really helpful, they don't discourage modding and generally will give you useful tips for whatever your doing. If your unsure I would email baratza directly but it seems the motor is the same on the Vario and Forte.

sportbiber (original poster)

#3: Post by sportbiber (original poster) »

Yes you are right, the motor is the same part in Vario and Forte, see attached parts lists. So the D-shaft should have the same diameter.
But belt, motor pulley and main drive pulley have different part numbers so I assume they differ. Maybe the motor in the Forte is going faster so the belt must be stronger?

sportbiber (original poster)

#4: Post by sportbiber (original poster) »

Btw could the Vario/Forte Motor run the other way around? It's a DC Motor so if I swap the black and the red cable... or are there diodes inside the motor which would burn out?

If so I could use right-ground burrs instead of the leftground ceramic burrs

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#5: Post by baldheadracing »

Yes, you can swap the leads and run right-hand 54mm burrs. You will probably have to change the burr mounting screws - the screws for the Mahlkoenig ceramic burrs have very small heads.

In addition, I believe that the sweeper arms on the lower burr carrier are bidirectional, but if not, a bit of work would be needed to shape the arms to push the grounds outwards.

However, the Baratza Vario/Forté BG steel burrs are made by Ditting and many people like them, including myself. There are also Mahlkoenig X54 burrs, Anfim Best burrs, or the Ditting combo burrs for Franke BK310148 (one burr looks like X54, the other like Baratza). All of these are left-hand.

I don't know if there are right-hand burrs that would be better than Ditting/Mahlkoenig/Anfim (all part of the Hemro group), but I'd be surprised.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada