Cafelat Robot User Experience - Page 85

A haven dedicated to manual espresso machine aficionados.
hbk520

Postby hbk520 » Apr 16, 2019, 1:15 am

[quote="Paul_Pratt"]The gauge

The hex fitting on the back of the gauge is threadlocked into place, and heat will release the bond. But I strongly advise not attempting it as it will probably break the gauge.

I will work on a different bracket this week to allow for viewing from the top.

The tamper

It is a great news to me , I can't wait any longer to get the top viewing version.

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Paul_Pratt

Postby Paul_Pratt » Apr 16, 2019, 2:15 am

IMAWriter wrote:Paul,
For us a bit vision challenged (have to wear reading glasses), I have found grinding directly into the basket (the Sette works well for this) yields a nearly level grind, which makes a straight tamp easier. Previously, I was pouring the grind from a small grind catcher into the basket. Hit or miss on an even distribution. I love the provided tamper. I have no issues with channeling.

That said, I was wondering about my gauge. With a time tested grind fineness (over 350 shots from the Robot) I can never seem to reach 6psi without seriously bend over the Robot an exerting way more pressure than I did to get the same sort of shot profile on my former Cremina. The pre-infuse is about 10 seconds, yield 2 grams, the rest of the shot, using a declining profile the final 3rd takes about 30 seconds, including the pre-infuse.

I'll drag out a scale, but is there any chance my gauge could be blocked, clogged, etc? Having owned a Cremina, La Pavoni, etc it just seems like a whole lot more effort. If I loosen the grind, the shot gushes, and I never reach more than about 4.5 psi. at 5psi, the shots look beautiful and taste wonderful...so I'm just curious. Love my Robot.


What you can do is undo the elbow fitting at the back of the gauge. That is the fitting the tube presses into and that just unscrews from the hexagonal nut fitting. There is a filter mesh screen inside there that may be restricted.

I always grind directly into the basket, at the SCA show I was using a good old fashioned grinder/doser with the forks removed. I was extracting around 6-7 bar. The table I was using was purposely made to be only around 90cm in height which allowed me to be in a great position to push down from.

Anyway if you are pulling good shots but the gauge reading is lower than you think it should be, either the gauge may have a blockage or there is a leak. But a leak is easy to see so perhaps there is a restriction in the pipe or the filter screen.

makisffx

Postby makisffx » Apr 16, 2019, 6:56 am

Many thanks to drgary, MB, IMAWriter, jpender, cooperpwc and LC for your answers.

Furthermore I would like to thank Mr. Paul Pratt for giving some interesting information regarding the redesign of the bracket. I am looking forward to seeing your new ideas soon.

The reason why I asked on the first place, about when we should see a redesign of the gauge, was very specific. As I previously said, I am interested in buying the barista version. I contacted a local reseller (I live in Germany), due to the fact that they only provide the regular version, and asked about the barista one. They informed me that they wait for the new redesigned gauge to become available, before they import the barista version.

I know that I could directly order the machine from the Cafelat Store, but I would like to avoid that due to the extra shiping costs and the eventual high custom fees.

Have a nice day!

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Paul_Pratt

Postby Paul_Pratt » replying to makisffx » Apr 16, 2019, 7:43 am

Just to clarify I've been using the gauge as it is for over 2 years now, made over 200 shots last week at SCA and not once have I ever thought the gauge should be facing upwards so you can view it. If I did I would have designed it like that from the beginning. If you are referring to coffee24 in Germany we are building their Barista Robots right now. If they have cancelled or changed the order to Regular Robots that is news to us.

Having a bracket that you can adjust is not that easy. It is easy to make but you have to consider the flexible hose and if the length of the hose allows for you to move the position. And since I prefer to do it properly it will be investment cast, that is a slow process so if I could get an alternative bracket ready to ship I do not foresee it happening before the end of this year.

I am a big believer of keeping things simple and sticking to the fundamentals of making espresso. The pressure gauge is useful, but getting real time feedback from the coffee is not to be underestimated. You can't see the coffee flowing into the cup, you can't see the colour of the coffee if your eyes are glued from above on a gauge. Having it on the front allows you to see both.

adyu

Postby adyu » Apr 16, 2019, 7:55 am

If you must see it from above, why not just stick a mirror underneath it? Simple DIY solution.

Personally, I'd rather be able to see it from below, so I can watch the shot being pulled while keeping an eye on the pressure.

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yakster

Postby yakster » Apr 16, 2019, 9:43 am

An interesting idea, clip a mirrored surface to the arm for viewing from above, maybe you could even make it look like a gauge cover when not in use.
-Chris

LMWDP # 272

makisffx

Postby makisffx » Apr 16, 2019, 10:08 am

Paul_Pratt wrote:Just to clarify I've been using the gauge as it is for over 2 years now, made over 200 shots last week at SCA and not once have I ever thought the gauge should be facing upwards so you can view it. If I did I would have designed it like that from the beginning. If you are referring to coffee24 in Germany we are building their Barista Robots right now. If they have cancelled or changed the order to Regular Robots that is news to us.

Having a bracket that you can adjust is not that easy. It is easy to make but you have to consider the flexible hose and if the length of the hose allows for you to move the position. And since I prefer to do it properly it will be investment cast, that is a slow process so if I could get an alternative bracket ready to ship I do not foresee it happening before the end of this year.

I am a big believer of keeping things simple and sticking to the fundamentals of making espresso. The pressure gauge is useful, but getting real time feedback from the coffee is not to be underestimated. You can't see the coffee flowing into the cup, you can't see the colour of the coffee if your eyes are glued from above on a gauge. Having it on the front allows you to see both.


Hello Mr. Pratt. The company I am refering to is the brewcompany in Germany.

I will happily wait for the barista version to become available from coffee24. Thank you in advance for that!

What you say about the gauge sound logical to me.

IMAWriter

Postby IMAWriter » Apr 16, 2019, 11:48 pm

Paul_Pratt wrote:What you can do is undo the elbow fitting at the back of the gauge. That is the fitting the tube presses into and that just unscrews from the hexagonal nut fitting. There is a filter mesh screen inside there that may be restricted.
(snipped)
Anyway if you are pulling good shots but the gauge reading is lower than you think it should be, either the gauge may have a blockage or there is a leak. But a leak is easy to see so perhaps there is a restriction in the pipe or the filter screen.

Many thanks, Paul. Yep, I can lean over my Robot similar to you. I'll check things out, and try my best to not have any leftover parts! :lol:

EDIT:
Paul, Way back, I had read I should see a bit of water in the plastic tubing during the pull? I actually never have, other than a couple times maybe a droplet.
Before I take anything apart, maybe I'll look at your Instagram pulls and see what happening with your pulls.
Rob
LMWDP #187
www.robertjason.com

IMAWriter

Postby IMAWriter » Apr 17, 2019, 12:27 am

OK, loosened the nut, whilst holding the gauge nut so as not to disturb.
Amazing precision fittings you've done, sir! Smooth as silk on..off, and back on. Didn't scratch a thing. So, the screen, under a bright light looked pristine, no sediment. The tube was firmly seated. I watched a couple of your vids. One showed what looked like you applying moderate pressure to the Robot's arms, the gauge reading just a fraction over 6 at your max. My grind fineness is, if anything coarser than my MCAL grind, the shot times are with my preferred parameters for the coffees I use. SO, it could be my weakened shoulders...yeah, BOTH of them (weightlifting) just cannot exert as much pressure due to the inward motion, as opposed to the 2 handed downward pressure applied on other levers?

I'll scale test my applied pressure in a couple days. Whatever, the coffee from my Robot is thick, delicious. FWIW, I'm currently pulling a very nice Australian roasted espresso blend from Coffee Mio.
Rob
LMWDP #187
www.robertjason.com

cooperpwc

Postby cooperpwc » Apr 17, 2019, 2:13 am

Paul_Pratt wrote:Just to clarify I've been using the gauge as it is for over 2 years now, made over 200 shots last week at SCA and not once have I ever thought the gauge should be facing upwards so you can view it. If I did I would have designed it like that from the beginning. If you are referring to coffee24 in Germany we are building their Barista Robots right now. If they have cancelled or changed the order to Regular Robots that is news to us.

Having a bracket that you can adjust is not that easy. It is easy to make but you have to consider the flexible hose and if the length of the hose allows for you to move the position. And since I prefer to do it properly it will be investment cast, that is a slow process so if I could get an alternative bracket ready to ship I do not foresee it happening before the end of this year.

I am a big believer of keeping things simple and sticking to the fundamentals of making espresso. The pressure gauge is useful, but getting real time feedback from the coffee is not to be underestimated. You can't see the coffee flowing into the cup, you can't see the colour of the coffee if your eyes are glued from above on a gauge. Having it on the front allows you to see both.


Following on this good advice, I tried front pull shots for the first time this morning. (I have Varier balance chair that lets me lean forward and throw my weight into it, so that helps a bit.) Having done a front pull, there is no going back IMO. It required some real strength to pull and hold 6-7 bars but, as with my manual grinder, that can only get easier with regular practice. :-)

Front pull is more comfortable for me than pushing down, including on the hands. I love seeing the brew pressure and flow simultaneously. (I still use my compact mirror to comfortably monitor the flow rather than duck my head; I am sitting a little high relative to my coffee cabinet.)

I am doubly pleased now with my Barista Robot. And I expect that I will be sticking with the current bracket. It looks good and it works.