Versalab M4 Unboxing and First Espresso - Page 3

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.
BVLDARI (original poster)

#21: Post by BVLDARI (original poster) »

mborkow wrote:Congratulations!
Thank you!!

BVLDARI (original poster)

#22: Post by BVLDARI (original poster) »

CoffeeMac wrote:I've had my M4 a few months now and also had initial retention on clean funnel of up to 3 grams! I eventually was able to bend the wiper closer to the funnel and reduce initial retention to about 0.5g. In vs out is now usually +/- 0.2g.

No RDT/WDT needed - one of the biggest benefits of the M4 vs my prior grinders. I have gotten a few (3-4?) pinhole channels resulting in gushers, but these have diminished after doing a more consistent vertical tap of the portafilter on the mat before tamping.

Regarding machine upgrades - you could do worse than considering a modern lever machine. I'm very happy with my current M4 + Londinium Compressa setup.
My retention is running at around 0.4 right now. Odd that it's about the same with clean or "used" funnel. I've only ran maybe 170g through it so I will wait a bit more to see how things settle.

BVLDARI (original poster)

#23: Post by BVLDARI (original poster) »

Corgo wrote:How is the user experience for changing grind fineness? Thanks!
CoffeeMac wrote:Very easy. Loosen red knob, rotate funnel, tighten red knob. Don't forget the last step!
100% correct - easiest thing ever. It's infinitely adjustable and everything is super smooth.


#24: Post by Plinyyounger »

Regarding adjusting grind, yes tightening and loosening the red knob is pretty effortless. I noticed when I first started using the grinder the adjustments can be small to make a noticeable grind difference. It's neither here nor there, but just something I've noticed.

I don't have any retention issues to speak of. I do use the forks to slap the bottom of the portafilter after each grind though. Probably shakes anything loose and why I don't have any retention issues.
Big 98mm flat grinder, been there done that, sold it. I’m happy now.

BVLDARI (original poster)

#25: Post by BVLDARI (original poster) »

I am a complete novice regarding workload but here is what it looks like for me right now.

VST 18g basket. Normcore tamper.

Gring right out of the grinder undisturbed.

After a few light taps. I noticed that I need to tap flat or the grinds will shift.

After tamp.

BVLDARI (original poster)

#26: Post by BVLDARI (original poster) »

If you follow the instructions, applying / installing the grinder scale is fairly uneventful and straight forward. In my opinion, the scale itself on the aluminum shelf should be pre installed (better yet etched) by the manufacturer. I like the multiple stickers they supply to use on the funnel itself since you can set several of them in different spots if you use multiple coffee beans.


#27: Post by p4lxrich »

Great info read. How do we order this? We have to call? What's the current turnaround time?

BVLDARI (original poster)

#28: Post by BVLDARI (original poster) replying to p4lxrich »

I ordered through the phone. Talked to Laura a couple of times before pulling the trigger. They had it out to me at around 2 weeks - which all things considered felt quick.


#29: Post by steelval3 »

Dari, and others - appreciate the detail in this thread!

My Versalab ships out this week, coming from a Kafatek MC4 (which I really enjoy but excited to experience the workflow, etc. of the Versalab).


#30: Post by proftournesol »

I've got a Gen 1 M3 that has been updated to the M4 level. I'm still unhappy with my burr alignment; it's OK but could be better. Having said that, this is my longest-lasting bit of coffee gear; I use it with my Decent. I've mounted mine on some Vibrapods, which has reduced the noise level somewhat. The anti-pop corning over looks rudimentary but works very well, it's a great improvement on the M3 (no cover at all), and I can watch the beans feed. I single dose from test-tube bean cellars; they easily fit under the cover. I don't RDT but find that WDT depends on the bean, I get no improvement with most beans, but some beans will persistently channel without it. I do get some clogging of coffee grounds in the bottom funnel. I brush it clean weekly. Dose-to-dose retention is 0.1g or less