Bought a Mazzer Super Jolly while I wait

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

#1: Post by MNate »

Wait times on top grinders can be long. I'm waiting on a Weber Key that really could arrive after Christmas. Just thought I'd post some of my experience:

1. Commercial grinders can take awhile to sell. That's why I posted my Compak F8 early and sold it when someone offered a reasonable price. Wish I could have kept it as I liked the grinder but thought it was best to put the money toward my next grinder. Similarly, I offered an ok price to a few people selling their Super Jollies. They were originally asking $300-350 but after a few months of no takers one of them finally came down to $225. $350 seems like an ok price, but they won't sell quickly for that. Since I knew I was going to want to sell it after my Key comes I knew I had to get a price low enough that I wouldn't have it forever posted for sale.

2. Hand grinders taste great but grinding 4 shots in quick succession gets old fast. We did our Minneapolis coffee gathering at my house right after selling my F8, so everything we made that day was on a friend's Monolith flat. Really nice. However, as I worked through that five pound bag over the next weeks I was using my Kinu M47 Traveller and found a profile and flow rate that really made a better drink than any I had that day with the Monolith. I'm sure the Monolith with that new profile would have been even better, but the point is the little conical did a great job. But man... every morning my wife was wanting three drinks (one for then, two to-go for work) plus mine and that was just excessive for me on a hand grinder. Pharos or Kinu, it takes time, effort, and left me a bit sore.

3. A used Super Jolly is great. Mine was very very clean and in good shape when I got it.
- I immediately removed the hopper and doser and single doser.
- I opened it up and did a marker test to check alignment. The top burr seemed good and the bottom burr seemed to remove about 80% so I thought I'd be good.
- in fact, I couldn't get it to grind nearly fine enough. It would chirp the burrs without getting to espresso range. So I took it apart, removed the burrs and discovered lots of fresh coffee grounds under the burrs. I'm pretty sure after the last user cleaned it out he didn't put the burrs in very tightly. I cleaned it well and put things back, marking positions and tightening the screws down well. I did another marker test and things were great. It then had no problem grinding for espresso.
- the Super Jolly was quite easy to use and dial in. A tiny nudge on the adjustment collar makes a difference. Easier to fine tune would be great, but it's fine. Taste has been good, but I won't try to compare it to others.
-I told myself I would NOT get SSP burrs because I'm only using it for a short time. Not worth it and I won't recoup my costs so... I'll try to stay strong!
-I did the pop bottle funnel mod and got a bellows that I've seen recommended on HB. Both have worked pretty well so I don't think I'll ask a friend to help with 3D printing.

4. I'd recommend a Super Jolly to tide other people over too, or even use as your starter grinder (though I'd go conical for starters and I'm not really sure a 64 flat is really a light-roast flat grinder. I did have an order in for a DF64 but the Super Jolly came available so I canceled it (Espresso Outlet was great about the canceling, by the way).

Some photos:

I may shoot a video of the workflow, once I get that sorted out a bit better.

ECM Manufacture: @ecmespresso #weliveespresso
Sponsored by ECM Manufacture

#2: Post by Pressino »

I think you'll like the SJ's espresso grinding abilities. I've got both the Mini and an SJ. I've found the SJ's standard 64mm burrs grind really fast compared to the 58mm Mini, which is a bit slow. I converted the Mini to single dosing with the DW mod. Both grinders produce nice tasting espresso. I'm still not sure how much difference there is in the cup, though there seems to be some, but I do prefer the quieter grinding of the Mini. I'm planning to convert the Mini to 64mm burrs, which I hope will speed it up. I also expect it will have even less retention than the 58mm burrs with the DW mod. I did convert my SJ with the DW mod, and it has very little retention compared to the DW modded Mini. I've finally decided I'll go with the 189D burrs, which are less aggressive than the 33M's, but still faster than the 58mm Mini burr set. I expect there will be some noticeable difference in taste as well that I could work with for different coffees.

You may decide to keep the SJ. They seem to be able to take abuse and last forever. About the only things that may wear out are the burrs (which cost very little and can be substituted by other types if you want) and the bearings (which are easy to replace when needed and can be bought for about $10 each. I bought some from McMaster-Carr just in case mine should ever need replacing. :)


#3: Post by blackcats »

In somewhat of a similar conundrum. Would love to get my hands on a Monolith but timeline is unknown right now. Perhaps a used SJ is the way to go. Pairs well with a GS3 I'm thinking.


#4: Post by MemPast »

I suggest you get the SSP burss, either the espresso burrs, or the Unimodal ones. It is going to improve the taste. It does require a break in period. In my case, it was close to 4 pounds of minute rice and another two pounds of coffee before I got nice shots. It is worth noting that the my SJ burrs are not well aligned, where the lower is aligned but the upper is not. I tried a couple of times to align them, but without success. Yet, the result in the cup is very nice.

To keep a flat and a conical is advised. I was hooked on conicals, until I replaced my SJ burrs with SSP Espresso burrs. I have a Eureka KR conical. I do back to back shots from each grinder on the same machine every day, and both grinders do very well on the same coffee, and the winner alternates between them from one day to another. If I am to keep one, I will keep the conical, because dialing in conicals seems to be easier, especially with the Eureka. Also, going very fine does not work well with SJ, where the burrs would spin but no coffee comes out (it does not stale nor the burrs touch, though).

Two grinders on the counter is not an option for some people. But if you have the space, then I advise you to have both. Also, selling a SJ with SSP burrs should be easier than selling one without them if you do not feel to keep the SJ -- I think!

Good luck.