Spong Coffee Mills: A Grinder for the 23rd Century - Page 2

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

#11: Post by Howdy Mr »

DJR wrote:Take apart the mill, brush it with a brass or other metal brush and if there is a lot of rust, immerse it for several days in a solution of 1 part regular molasses and 10 parts water. It won't damage the paint, but will take care of the rust. Don't laugh. Don't check it for a few days. Then remove the pieces, rinse in the sink and use the brush again. The rust will be gone.
This works. After reading this I started restoring my Dienes. This solution also loosens paint apparently, because it's coming off more easily than before. It becomes brittle and flakes away more easily. Thanks for the tip. Tomorrow I'll take all the parts out to reassemble the mill.


#12: Post by jonny »

Nice write-up. Very informative. I share your frustrations as I too use a Rossi. Which I spend a couple minutes brushing out old grinds prior to grinding and then more brushing in the throat to get all the coffee through and yet more brushing to get the coffee off the walls and star of the doser. Mind you, I realized coffee bean chunks can jump from the throat, through a gap between the adjustment ring and burr carrier and down through cutouts in the burr carrier thread, thus bypassing the burrs and contaminating your grind with coarse particles. I love old things that work well. Might have to snag one of these. Thanks!


#13: Post by Taiki »

You said that "My No. 1 is just to keep the others company.". Does it mean that it isn't suitable for espresso grind? Or maybe it is rather too slow as it has the smallest burrs?

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DJR (original poster)

#14: Post by DJR (original poster) »

Is the Spong No. 1 suitable for espresso?

I tried it for the first time. In dialing it in for espresso (using La Peppina), it took me three tries because the first two were way too fine. Easily Turkish. I backed it off till it seemed too loose. I could wiggle the handle and the burr wiggled. It wasn't very hard to turn at that setting. Sometimes it seemed to fail to grab a bean, but that didn't matter, actually. It worked well, much better than the couple Zassenhaus' I have, at least in terms of ease and grind. I didn't compare taste -- if I ever did do that I'd want at least another two people attending:

The grinds:

The shot:

It took between 60-75 turns for two scoops of beans.



#15: Post by earlgrey_44 »

earlgrey_44 wrote:Well, to my surprise, the #2 was actually a #1. :(

Decided it wasn't worth the effort to mess with it.

Okay, maybe I gave up too soon.

I'll give it a try for sure this time and report back.
Trust your taste. Don't trust your perception.

Howdy Mr

#16: Post by Howdy Mr »

I'm thinking I might have stolen this one. :wink:

The guy listed it before but had even less information. I asked him if there was a number on the grinder. About an hour before the auction closed he sent me a message that it had a number 2 on it. I bid when he relisted and now am the proud owner of a Spong #2.


#17: Post by earlgrey_44 »

Yep, you got away with a good one there. Congrats.

When I bought my espresso machine on e-bay, the seller didn't bother to research the name of the machine. It was called a "vapore continuo" because it had a sticker on it to that effect. Probably helped my price out a bit...
Trust your taste. Don't trust your perception.

Howdy Mr

#18: Post by Howdy Mr »

It showed up this morning. Appears to be in good condition, though with some rust. Looks like surface rust. It looks like the white was sprayed again at some time, but the rest looks original. I'll likely take it apart Monday and let it soak in the molasses/water solution for a few days so it'll be ready next weekend.

Thanks again for this thread.

Howdy Mr

#19: Post by Howdy Mr »

I hate to perpetuate the rising prices of these, but in case anyone is interested there is a number 3 on eBay that has a day left and is at about $30 including shipping. I'd bid on it if I hadn't just gotten a number 2.


#20: Post by Quack »

I had read this thread when it was posted then forgot about it. Was surprised to auction you linked to Howdy was the one i bought today! I'll take some pictures, then take DJR's advice and see if i can't get it all cleaned up.