Levercraft Ultra Grinder User Experience

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

#1: Post by cccpu »

So, after months of waiting, my Levercraft Ultra Grinder is finally here!

I got this grinder as an upgrade to my "hyper-aligned" Baratza Forte because I was tired of the single dosing workflow and lever arm action on that grinder and was ready for the end-game side of things grinder-wise...

So far, the Ultra is shaping up to be everything I have been hoping it would be.

I have pulled 5 shots so far using 18g doses, with two separate coffees. As of yet, I have only needed one shot to establish a baseline, and by the second shot, the coffees have already been very enjoyable.

I am pretty OD'd on caffeine today, but, starting tomorrow I should be able to try one or two more shots in the morning and possibly my first attempt at pour-over ranges, time permitting.

I ordered my grinder with all black accessories and 98mm Red Speed Coated SSP High Uniformity Blind Burrs.

I have my grinder set to 400 RPM at the moment and will possibly experiment with the RPM profiling features as soon as tonight using some Decaf options...

Let me know if y'all have any questions or comments, and I'll see if I can help answer them.

Hope this finds y'all well. A big thank you to Eric who has helped make this machine available to us folks stateside.

More to come...
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#2: Post by mwebber »

I can't wait for mine to come in! As someone who is also upgrading from a hyperaligned Forte, I am curious what your thoughts are on the differences in workflow and cup quality between the two.

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#3: Post by cccpu (original poster) »

I was able to use the RPM profiling tonight that came preprogrammed on my Ultra.

The grinder runs at 200 RPM for about 10 seconds (which is more than enough time to grind the 15g doses I was using for my pour-overs) and then immediately ramps up to 1250 RPM for another few seconds to purge any remaining coffee from the grind chamber before turning off.

The first attempt was much finer than my preference for filter at 9 on the dial (my previous espresso shots were hovering around 2 on the dial) producing a somewhat bitter and astringent cup.

I majorly overcompensated on my second go, moving the dial to 17.2, which resulted in a grind size I was much more comfortable with visually - however the extraction, while much more drinkable, began exhibiting the signs of slight under-extraction with the newfound sweetness in the cup being slightly tainted by the first hints of sourness.

I have dial set now to 15 and will see how that fares first thing in the morning.
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#4: Post by cccpu (original poster) »

mwebber wrote:I can't wait for mine to come in! As someone who is also upgrading from a hyperaligned Forte, I am curious what your thoughts are on the differences in workflow and cup quality between the two.
I am still absorbing and readjusting myself to my new "limbs" so I haven't fully settled in to a new routine just yet - however I can already make a few comments on some differences that stand out so far:

01) Noise. The Forté is many magnitudes louder than the Ultra - both running while empty and during grinding.

02) Time to grind. The Forté is by no means a "fast" grinder, but even when using a moderately low speed (200 RPM) the 15g doses I put through the Ultra were ground in about 5-7 seconds.

03) Retention. One thing I grew to despise while single dosing my Forté was having to blow into the hopper to make sure everything I put into the hopper went into the burrs and came out again on the other side...

With the Ultra, I am currently using a "Weber-esque" blind tumbler with a lid that seats perfectly in the mouth of the grind chamber. I dose into the tumbler, RDT, put the lid on, shake vigorously, remove the lid and the stopper once the tumbler is sitting on the running grinder, and voila.

The "set-it-and-forget-it" nature of the RPM profiling "self-purge" makes getting what you put into the grinder out again a given - not an exercise in seeing how you can best prevent coffee particles from getting blown back into your eyes and all over your coffee station... *sigh, Baratza*

The last thing I will say is in regards to those at times infuriatingly obstinate lever arms on the Forté - I will not miss them.

In contrast, the dial collar on the Ultra has a slightly "grippy" rubbery feel that while not overly difficult to adjust, feels solid once set into a new position - unlike say, the dial on an EK43, that verges on "drifty" when trying to switch between several similar settings in the espresso ranges.

So far, there is nothing I am missing about my Forté in relation to workflow or user experience when compared to the Levercraft Ultra.

Hopefully that at least begins to paint a picture of where things are at so far?

That's all for now. Good night!
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#5: Post by RobindG »

Does it not have the rounded / curved chute?

cccpu (original poster)

#6: Post by cccpu (original poster) »

Mine does not, however I have seen that chute design on one or two social media posts.
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#7: Post by Eiern »

Congrats with your new grinder! Exept for a bulky controller for the motor if one doesn't have a good place to hide it it looks like a great option!

Regarding filter brews, I have the High Uniformity SSP burrs in my EK43S with Titus carrier, and mirroring other users experiences it's just not a good burrset for brew in my experience. The taste is hollow, lacking body and sweetness, it has however a decent clarity of aromas in that tiny window between underextracted that you found and bitter tainted, but it's really lacking body and sweetness and aftertaste.

I did not enjoy the brews from it much, very boring presentation of a coffee. That's why I got a Wilfa Uniform with SSP brew burrs and it's much better, actually close to EK with stock burrs: sweet, clean enough to reveal aromas, good body/mouthfeel and aftertaste, extraction measures high. It's not identical to the EK but close. Maybe keeping the Forte for brew would be a good solution if you haven't sold it already?

I was hoping the EK with stock burrs aligned would be a great dual purpose grinder. It almost is but espresso wasn't possible like with the High Uniformitity is with my Bianca and light roasts. I couldn't grind fine enough, but now with H. U. I can switch to filter roast as the espresso roast is more bitter tainted and has duller acidity.

I was also hoping that the High Uniformity actually was decent for filter brews and that the other people just were too picky. But I was wrong and now I believe more that you can't get the best for such different grind sizes at the same time with a burr. You can get close but it's easier and better to have one optimised for each style.

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#8: Post by ancoffee »

wow. Love your new grinder. I want to compare it with kafatek max, weber eg1 or lagom 64.

cccpu (original poster)

#9: Post by cccpu (original poster) »

Some shots of the grounds produced by the HU Blind Burrs at setting 17 on the dial.

15g Dose
220g Water
1:48 Drawdown

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#10: Post by LewBK »

Waiting for the Monolith comparison.