Relaunch of Espresso Forge

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#1: Post by EspressoForge »

Hey everyone,

This is Andre with Espresso Forge. I brought the concept of the Forge to the Home-Barista community in early 2015, looking for any kind of feedback to make something special. From a DIY project at my house to a small business venture, I cannot thank everyone at Home-Barista for following along on my journey and giving such great feedback to allow me to have the project come to life. I managed to make it a buy it for life manual espresso machine that comes at a great price and is capable of shop quality espresso.

I hand-made the Forge's on a batch-to-batch basis, with each version getting better than the previous using the Home-Barista feedback to continually improve the Forge until the community agreed we all had accomplished the goal set in front of us. About the time the Forge was refined, my other business was busy as ever, and with a heavy heart, I had to let EF come to a stop. It was a bummer to see this happen as it was not an easy decision to make for me. So when I received an inquisitive email from Dwight (the new owner of Espresso Forge) about the state of EF, I was relieved from the thought of Forge's being sold again to the community who helped design it. I can't thank you guys enough again for all the help along the way, I'm over the moon to see the business Forging Ahead.

All the best,

Andre



---------------
Hey all,

This is Dwight with Espresso Forge and I wanted to drop a quick note that I will be actively present here to answer any questions about the new Forge. I'm excited to take on the legacy that Andre started here on Home-Barista. I'm proud to say these are still handmade in small batches, just in my hometown in Colorado instead of Andre's in North Carolina these days.

I changed a few small details on the Forge, the main ones being an in-house made anodized aluminum handle and a new lock ring. The updated lock ring has a groove cut to allow the band to lock into place (to avoid slipping off) and updated threads for easier threading.







The Forge Details
:
• Professional quality espresso from the comfort of your kitchen or campsite.
• Buy it for life product
• Transferrable Lifetime Warranty
• Pressure Profiling capabilities providing shots rivaling the top commercial machines.
• Commercial Grade 58mm bottomless basket
• Simple, durable, robust
• Minimal maintenance required
• 100% 304 Stainless Steel Brew Path
• Crafted from start to finish in-house, all components finished and assembled by hand.


Please use this thread to ask about the Forge, pressure profiles we are loving, or as a soundboard for more feedback about how we could make the Forge even better. I'm open to it and really appreciate everyone that helped this project alongside Andre.


I'm excited to announce that Espresso Forge's are officially shipping tomorrow (Nov. 1) over at https://espressoforge.com

Cheers,

-Dwight

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LewBK

#2: Post by LewBK »

Hi, Does the new aluminum T handle fit the old Forge models? Thanks.

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#3: Post by EspressoForge (original poster) »

Hey LewBK, the new anodized T handle should fit all the old Forge models. If for some reason it's not the M10 thread, I could thread a handle your thread size and throw it in the next batch going to anodizing so you don't need a new piston to get the new handle. Cheers

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spressomon

#4: Post by spressomon »

A few years ago I had a friend of mine machine a funnel for the top of my EspressoForge. It really helps with over-fill, etc. Something you guys should offer at some point...

Dan

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#5: Post by EspressoForge (original poster) »

Dan,

Really appreciate the feedback and the photo and your travel setup. First off, that funnel is awesome! Is that lock ring under your funnel to hold it up? Lastly, is the funnel something you take on and off, or does it just stay on full time since you received it?

Dwight

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spressomon

#6: Post by spressomon »

Dwight, the funnel has an o-ring in it as I originally thought, when I drew up the design, I wanted it to be removable. But after using it I decided to bond the funnel to the SS tube, so its more or less permanently mounted.

The collar and strap was something I used to use...after I pulled a shot I would pull the strap up over the handle and lock it down to press the remaining water from the 'Forge while grinding & prepping the next shot. But, rather than do that (in the name of speeding up subsequent shots when I make multiple shots for camp friends), I now just pour the unused water from the 'Forge and press out the remaining moisture in the puck...fast, easy and less hassle. So the collar and silicone-rubber strap have been removed.

The funnel makes a big difference, especially during sleepy eyed first of morning shots :lol: ...not having to focus so much on aiming as precisely with boiling water, over-fill, etc.
No Espresso = Depresso

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HB
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#7: Post by HB »

spressomon wrote:...not having to focus so much on aiming as precisely with boiling water, over-fill, etc.
Very good point! While we're on the subject, I recall preheating experiments in here and here. Given the interest in light roasted coffee, is there a recommended preheat method that gets the job done with minimal risk of burns?

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spressomon

#8: Post by spressomon »

Typically, when I use the 'Forge it's when we're camping. And more often than not out here in the vastland of the Great Basin and Eastern Sierra, we're camping at 6500' and higher. Last week we camped at 7300' (water boils at ~199F at this elevation) and I just preheated the 'Forge one time by pouring in boiling water, inserting the piston to help contain the heat and pressing down lightly to get the heat impart into the base. At these elevations I generally use darker roast beans that are better with a little lower temp brew water. I have pre-heated the 'Forge by placing it atop my Fino water kettle, in lieu of the lid, and using the steam to pre-heat...but that adds a ton of steam into our little camp trailer, so I tend not to use it that way when camping; but it works great too for pre-heating.

But, I have pulled medium to medium-light roasts during some of our higher elevation camp-outs and flavor is on point; albeit with 2-preheating cycles. Having said that, I don't think Cafe Lusso's Gran Miscela Carmo, notorious for needing 204-206F brew water temp for full flavor, would be my go to when camping at any elevation higher than sea level-ish.

As is the case with all normal atmospheric pressure (non-pressurized boiler fed espresso machines/presses) the results in the cup are very related to the type and roast level of the beans.

I found I prefer the flavor in the cup by using a 26.5 IMS Competition basket with 20-21g doses rather than the basket that came with my 'Forge. At home, using the Slayer, my go to basket is the 18g VST with 17g doses. But I found the 'Forge really glows with the larger dose in the IMS basket.
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#9: Post by EspressoForge (original poster) »

Dan,

The O-ring design is an awesome idea, I imagine I would try to recreate something like that for people to be able to take it on and off as they please. Was pondering the idea of a sight glass (for water level) on the side of the Forge if it could be made strong enough to withstand some abuse of getting tossed around. I've also found that sweet spot in overdosing a bit, curious what your favorite beans you would grab for those trips with the Forge instead of the Gran Miscela Carmo?

We have a couple of local roasters here in Colorado really enjoying the Forge for QC in their coffee lab which has been awesome to hear their feedback.

As far as the preheating recommendations, I always prefer the preheating on the kettle versus the blank basket with hot water. With the preheating on the kettle, you just have to watch the top plate versus pouring out hot water with the blank basket technique. I often touch the top plate (I don't recommend this) when it's fully at temp after preheating to feel how hot and it seems no more dangerous than the portafilter on my Slayer when it's at temp. It seems the steam coming out of the kettle would be the only thing to truly keep an eye out for!

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BeanRidin'

#10: Post by BeanRidin' »

I am glad to hear the Forge is back in the picture!

Andre, I didn't realize you had stopped making them and have passed the company on. I just noticed all the talk about the Robot compared to other small manual devices but no mention of the Forge. I had a mypressi twist that made good espresso when it worked, but chose a Forge when I could no longer get parts to keep it running,

So simple and robust. It pulls a great shot also. I have been able to pull some shots using it that tasted as good as I have had from a local roaster with a slayer. I have it paired with an OE Pharos.

My work flow is to put some water in a three cup Yama gooseneck kettle, put a stopper in the spout, and bring it to a boil. While waiting, I measure out 18.5 to 21g of beans and dose the grinder. Once at a boil, I grind the beans, take the lid off the kettle, and place the Forge, without the lock ring, on the kettle. I fits just right. By time I dump the grinds into the basket, stir them up some, level and tamp, the Forge is up to temp for medium roasts. I let it steam a bit longer for the light roasts I prefer. I grab the tube and give the screen a quick blot on a towel before locking on the basket. The gooseneck makes it easy to pour and I go by the sound and slow down at a certain pitch and top it off. I wait for the level to drop about half an inch and top it off. I start the plunge at about 2 bars until the first drop falls and the ramp up to 8-9 bars, sometimes trailing off to 6 bar at the end, depending on the coffee.

The only two qualms I have had about it were trying to get the lock ring threaded on and the rubber gripper on the lock ring falling off.

I found my first time success rate with threading greatly increased when I turned the dial to face me and rotated the ring off just above a towel. When ready to lock the basket in, I pick up the ring just as it fell and make sure the pressure gage is again facing me when I bring the two together.

I have found the rubber ring around the locking ring to slip easily when it is still hot. This is an issue if I am pulling shots for more than myself. When it does come off, that locking ring is very hot to the touch. Since pulling shots for guests is rare, I have not bothered gluing or coming up with another fix for it yet. The grove to help keep it in place sounds like a good idea, especially for travel.

Dwight, the best of luck to you. I anticipate my Forge will out last me!