KafaTek Monolith Concial: Production Run #10 User Experience - Page 8

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

Postby BaristaBob » Nov 14, 2018, 11:09 am

So after two weeks using the new MonoCon (production run #10)...with the "lock-less grind fineness adjustment", I have not experienced one millimeter of movement from the fineness adjuster. I'm wondering what others have experienced so far, considering there is some banter about the "dreaded creep" with the new Niche grinder with its stepless/lockless grind adjuster? :shock:
Bob "hello darkness my old friend..."

sluflyer06

Postby sluflyer06 » Nov 14, 2018, 11:29 am

I never had a concern of creep, but anyways, I've pulled about 40+ shots so far and no movement....

in fact once I dialed it in, I haven't had to move it in a week to maintain my extraction time... exactly what I was hoping for moving to a big Conical! My k30 needed frequent adjustment.

BaristaBob

Postby BaristaBob » Jan 11, 2019, 1:29 pm

Well it's time for an update...

After two full months with this grinder I must simply say...it just works as advertised. Single doser, near-zero retention, step-less, and now lockless adjustment in a rather small package, put together like a Sherman tank...what's not to like. Sure it's way better than my three year old Rancilio Rocky in all categories except it's built like a Sherman tank too. It is worth north of two grand (I did upgrade to the TiN coated burrs on the basis of what's 10% more when you are already spending large sums of money)...the current market still says YES! Is the market still demanding Titan grinders...oh heck YES! And, just for good measure Ceado, that Venice Italy based Company known for manufacturing high quality grinders, they want a piece of this market segment too with the ostentatious Hero 37z and another single doser to hit the market shortly.

In my two months of daily use (minimum 3 double shots/day) the KafaTek Monolith Conical grinder (production run #10) has performed with true consistency. I did not "season" the burrs, just let daily use have its polishing affect. It's winter here in Pennsylvania, humidity is low, RDT is a must. One spray of water mist (about 0.2g) is all it takes. I also WDT (this is nothing new for me, its benefits are discussed in other topic areas on H-B), to mitigate channeling, but with the MonoCon there has never been even one misadventure. My technique is as follows: weigh beans, RDT, grind directly into pf, reweigh, WDT, use Pullman Chisel to compress/distribute grinds, use Decent Espresso tamper v1 with 25lb force spring, lock and load, weigh pour volume...drink or steam milk for flatwhite. So as for the burrs wearing in, the first month saw the most change, dropping 2 whole number units rapidly (in my case from 9 to 7) for my "go to" morning coffee (Kaldi's Espresso 700). The month of December has yielded more stability in grinder setting with no significant change...maybe I have reached the point of being "seasoned." Single dosing has always appealed to me since I love to explore the world of coffee and the many flavor profiles available to us coffee lovers. I can move this grinder in the course of one day from 5 to 4 to 7 and then start over the very next day with all parameters remaining the same...time, pour volume, etc. over a reasonable two week period with the same beans. I log every shot I pull, call me OCD, but if I buy that coffee again six months down the road, I have my starting parameters already lined out. Retention...none to speak of right out of the box and it's still that way....at the most 0.1g retention, if that. I continue to weigh my pf after grinding even with near zero-retention...maybe it's my OCD kicking in, or maybe I'm waiting for the first time this grind decides to hold back on me. Hasn't happened yet...that's all I can say.

Disappointments...nothing major....my biggest complaint is wanting to use my Decent Espresso funnel instead of the KafaTek funnel since the ridge sits on the outside of the pf and not in the bed of grinds. The pf holding arms won't allow this extra width, at least for my Breville pf and basket. I've solved this problem by just riding the pf wings on top for the arms and resting the top edge of the DE funnel under the ridge of the grinder...it works, I just can't walk away. Also, maybe a variable speed adjustment like on the Monolith Flat, though I'm not sure that would yield much of a flavor improvement with conical burrs.

Next topic to discuss, once I pull the data together, will be with respect to particle size distribution coming from the KafaTek Monolith Conical grinder (production run #10). Yes...I was crazy enough to purchase one of those Kruve sifters and we are going to discuss the particle size distribution (PSD) coming from those 68mm TiN conical burrs and comparing my results to those of the Socratic people, who have done some excellent work in the area of PSD on several grinders including the MonoCon.

As usual, all comments welcome.
Bob "hello darkness my old friend..."

eltakeiteasy

Postby eltakeiteasy » replying to BaristaBob » Jan 11, 2019, 6:00 pm

Very nice summary, Bob. After 4 months of use with my MonFlat w/SSP burrs, I can confirm that I have not experienced one millimeter of movement from the fineness adjuster either. It's a fantastic grinder than I enjoy using multiple times per day. Always brings a smle to my face :lol:

BaristaBob

Postby BaristaBob » replying to eltakeiteasy » Jan 11, 2019, 6:48 pm

Yep...the smiles do keep coming. :lol:
Bob "hello darkness my old friend..."

JayBeck

Postby JayBeck » Jan 11, 2019, 10:37 pm

BaristaBob wrote:Well it's time for an update...

After two full months with this grinder I must simply say...it just works as advertised. Single doser, near-zero retention, step-less, and now lockless adjustment in a rather small package, put together like a Sherman tank...what's not to like. Sure it's way better than my three year old Rancilio Rocky in all categories except it's built like a Sherman tank too. It is worth north of two grand (I did upgrade to the TiN coated burrs on the basis of what's 10% more when you are already spending large sums of money)...the current market still says YES! Is the market still demanding Titan grinders...oh heck YES! And, just for good measure Ceado, that Venice Italy based Company known for manufacturing high quality grinders, they want a piece of this market segment too with the ostentatious Hero 37z and another single doser to hit the market shortly.

In my two months of daily use (minimum 3 double shots/day) the KafaTek Monolith Conical grinder (production run #10) has performed with true consistency. I did not "season" the burrs, just let daily use have its polishing affect. It's winter here in Pennsylvania, humidity is low, RDT is a must. One spray of water mist (about 0.2g) is all it takes. I also WDT (this is nothing new for me, its benefits are discussed in other topic areas on H-B), to mitigate channeling, but with the MonoCon there has never been even one misadventure. My technique is as follows: weigh beans, RDT, grind directly into pf, reweigh, WDT, use Pullman Chisel to compress/distribute grinds, use Decent Espresso tamper v1 with 25lb force spring, lock and load, weigh pour volume...drink or steam milk for flatwhite. So as for the burrs wearing in, the first month saw the most change, dropping 2 whole number units rapidly (in my case from 9 to 7) for my "go to" morning coffee (Kaldi's Espresso 700). The month of December has yielded more stability in grinder setting with no significant change...maybe I have reached the point of being "seasoned." Single dosing has always appealed to me since I love to explore the world of coffee and the many flavor profiles available to us coffee lovers. I can move this grinder in the course of one day from 5 to 4 to 7 and then start over the very next day with all parameters remaining the same...time, pour volume, etc. over a reasonable two week period with the same beans. I log every shot I pull, call me OCD, but if I buy that coffee again six months down the road, I have my starting parameters already lined out. Retention...none to speak of right out of the box and it's still that way....at the most 0.1g retention, if that. I continue to weigh my pf after grinding even with near zero-retention...maybe it's my OCD kicking in, or maybe I'm waiting for the first time this grind decides to hold back on me. Hasn't happened yet...that's all I can say.

Disappointments...nothing major....my biggest complaint is wanting to use my Decent Espresso funnel instead of the KafaTek funnel since the ridge sits on the outside of the pf and not in the bed of grinds. The pf holding arms won't allow this extra width, at least for my Breville pf and basket. I've solved this problem by just riding the pf wings on top for the arms and resting the top edge of the DE funnel under the ridge of the grinder...it works, I just can't walk away. Also, maybe a variable speed adjustment like on the Monolith Flat, though I'm not sure that would yield much of a flavor improvement with conical burrs.

Next topic to discuss, once I pull the data together, will be with respect to particle size distribution coming from the KafaTek Monolith Conical grinder (production run #10). Yes...I was crazy enough to purchase one of those Kruve sifters and we are going to discuss the particle size distribution (PSD) coming from those 68mm TiN conical burrs and comparing my results to those of the Socratic people, who have done some excellent work in the area of PSD on several grinders including the MonoCon.

As usual, all comments welcome.


Great read! I'm loving the Flat as well!