Grinder cleaning - when and how? - Page 2

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.
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JohnB.
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#11: Post by JohnB. » Feb 12, 2014, 12:36 pm

I've got one of those Rocket blowers but it doesn't do a good job of clearing out the old grounds from the K10. It has proved useful at clearing the coal ash from my manometer take off as well as a few other odd jobs so it was still money well spent.
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beer&mathematics

#12: Post by beer&mathematics » Feb 12, 2014, 1:14 pm

I can't imagine a grinder like the K10 so the Rocket air blower works for me for my Pharos and Virtuoso. Hopefully it works with the Vario that the OP owns. Best
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rebthor

#13: Post by rebthor » replying to beer&mathematics » Feb 12, 2014, 4:45 pm

Rocket blower works well for me with a dosered SJ to get the grinds out from the chute and also to help get all the ground coffee into the doser.

sonnyhad

#14: Post by sonnyhad » Feb 12, 2014, 4:53 pm

Why not raw rice? Its what I have always used? I never did understand the reasons why not!
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Spitz.me

#15: Post by Spitz.me » Feb 12, 2014, 5:17 pm

JohnB. wrote:I've got one of those Rocket blowers but it doesn't do a good job of clearing out the old grounds from the K10. It has proved useful at clearing the coal ash from my manometer take off as well as a few other odd jobs so it was still money well spent.
Interesting because it really does work for me. You have to make sure you cup the hole when blowing out loose grounds so that you don't get blow back. For those people who are thinking about a Rocket blower and have a K10, keep in mind that it only works if you're looking to move a small amount of grinds (less than 1gr). It doesn't work instead of your brush when you're 'bumping and grinding'.

I have not found the need to use anything to clean my burrs since I bought the grinder.
I know I've pulled a great shot when the flavour is 'like a beany taste that tastes like a bean'.

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JohnB.
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#16: Post by JohnB. » Feb 12, 2014, 5:49 pm

Since the sweeper in the burr chamber of the K10 has 3 arms you could only "blow out" one section at a time from the chute opening. Then what? Reach in & turn to the next one? Pumping air in from the top with the Rocket blower with the grinder running is a waste of time as it just isn't strong enough. If I want to clear the chamber of old loose grounds it takes about 3-4 seconds with the grinder running & the vacuum I mentioned previously.

As you said nothing much builds up on the burr surface but the burr chamber & sweeper get coated with coffee oils & a thick layer of old grounds builds up on the bottom of the upper burr carrier.
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pShoe

#17: Post by pShoe » Feb 12, 2014, 6:56 pm

Image

These are amazing for Vario Cleaning. A set of them can be bought at Harbor Freight for a couple bucks.

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boar_d_laze

#18: Post by boar_d_laze » Feb 12, 2014, 9:42 pm

sonnyhad wrote:Why not raw rice? Its what I have always used? I never did understand the reasons why not!
Because it's so hard, it can bog down or stall a grinder's motor. Or so I've heard from techs, retailers and manufacturers.

My previous grinder, a La Cimbali Junior Max Hybrid is both a huge pain to take apart, and not really amenable to thorough cleaning by brush or air without taking apart. I used Grindz and/or instant rice to keep it clean since buying it. It punished me when I didn't clean it regularly. For those who've never had schmutz stuck to their burrs :) Good for you!

My Ceado is built so that the top burr assembly can be removed by removing two screws; and following cleaning the burrs and burr chamber, the assembly can be replaced without requiring any re-calibration, so -- alright already -- I'll disassemble and brush. It'll be interesting to see if grind setting needs much adjustment.

BDL
Drop a nickel in the pot Joe. Takin' it slow. Waiter, waiter, percolator

opother

#19: Post by opother » Feb 12, 2014, 10:09 pm

sonnyhad wrote:Why not raw rice? Its what I have always used? I never did understand the reasons why not!
No NO NO if you use raw rice you must be sure your grinder has sturdy burr mounts. If they are of the plastic tab variety or other weaker low tolerance design it will rip it up. How do I know, ok well I tried using uncooked rice in a Solis Maestro and it popped the outer burr right out. I had rebend the flexible plastic tabs back into shape again.

It did cause noticeable strain on the motor but still handled it, at least until the burr mount popped out of it's carrier.

The newer ones have more tabs and are more durable but I am still familiar with the general concept and it is not a good idea to pour raw rice into those either.

In other words if your grinder is not overbuilt (stocky commercial grinders seem to handle rice fine) it probably will not fare well grinding stuff that is harder than your most lightly roasted hard coffee beans such as for instance HARD UNCOOKED RICE.

I have turned to the simple brush, vacuum cleaner, and once in a while disassembly to keep my burrs clean. I gave up on pouring magic neutral tasting substances into the grind mechanism. It does work (grinding neutral tasting stuff) but it is not a long term solution. It is probably practical for a quick clean but for weaker grinders use less hard stuff such as grindz.

sonnyhad

#20: Post by sonnyhad » Feb 13, 2014, 2:20 am

Hmm, guess I better not press my luck with raw rice! Thanks for the explanation!
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