Puck never comes out - Breville Oracle Touch

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.

#1: Post by israguard »

Hi everyone,

The puck in my Linea Mini comes out like butter and with zero effort. Comes out in perfect shape. No issues.

The puck in my Breville Oracle Touch comes out only if you bang the hell out of the porta filter against the knock box 4-5 times. I feel like the counter will one day break.

My question is why is this happening with the Breville ? I use a knife to just "cut it / pry it" into the compost bucket and move on... but I am curious if the puck being so stuck inside is a sign something is not being done properly in regards to grind.

Any input you may have / suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Warmest regards, Shawn

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#2: Post by Nunas »

I've got three machines and about eight baskets. I too have noticed that the same coffee will pop out of some baskets and require a couple of hard hits in others. I've never really wondered why, but thinking about which ones pop out and which ones don't, I suspect a major factor is the shape of the basket. The easiest extraction is on my Caravel, which has a very tapered basket. The hardest is on the biggest basket on my Riviera, which has vertical sides right down to the bottom.

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israguard (original poster)

#3: Post by israguard (original poster) »

Good morning. Thanks for taking the time. I may be out to lunch but I do feel that pucks should come out relatively easily and maybe one or two (max) knocks. Mine requires 4-knocks minimum and with some serious force.. What I will try is a more coarse grind ad a wetter puck.

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BaristaBoy E61

#4: Post by BaristaBoy E61 »

What I've discovered when not being in too much in a hurry, is that leaving the spent portafilter resting on the drip tray with the puck in tact after extraction while I do other things such as steaming milk, gives the puck time to absorb all the moisture remaining, bloom somewhat and then contract into a drier puck that I can then remove just by shacking the portafilter with the puck over a compost bin, often without even any banging at all! It usually comes out relatively clean, complete and well, like a hockey 'puck'.

The downside is that if the portafilter has been out of the group for any length of time, it and the group will require a longer period of time to come back up to temperature and stabilize once reinserted. In a home environment this is not much of a problem as long as I don't have guests waiting for their shots.

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israguard (original poster)

#5: Post by israguard (original poster) »

Good morning,

By pure chance I found a video on YT on how to adjust the amount of coffee being dispensed by this machine. Small removal/adjustment with tools supplied. As it comes out of the factory... this machines dispenses way too much coffee and the basket is quite full. I will play with this for a day or so until I can get a 1 to 2 almost perfect ratio and I am hopeful it will be better then. Also, I wonder if oils or lack there of in the coffee beans have any sort of effect on the ease in which a pick comes out.

To be continued.


#6: Post by scottsworth »

Could it be that your Breville is running at a higher pressure and causing the puck to become more compacted?

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#7: Post by baldheadracing »

I would guess that the issue might be due to differences in the two machines' 3-way systems. (The 3-way system releases the water pressure at the end of a shot, and makes the pssht noise at the end of a shot. This allows the portafilter to be removed immediately after a shot.) Differences in system function could be due to something like an over-loaded basket, differences in maintenance (backflushing), or even the distance between the 3-way system and the group dispersion block inside the machine.

As a general guideline, commercial groups are going to have a 3-way system strong enough to suck the puck upwards out of the basket a bit at the end of the shot. (Old transparent basket video from La Spaziale: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Xmq8NqdUiM ) When the water pressure is released by the 3-way, the puck settles back down into the portafilter basket. Thus, the seal between the wet, spent puck and the portafilter basket is broken and the puck knocks out easily. However, if the seal between the puck and the basket hasn't been broken by the 3-way's action, then you have to break that seal by vigorous knocking, cleaning up, etc. (Single baskets are infamous for this making mess.)

So you may well be on the right track if your Oracle is over-filling the basket.
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israguard (original poster)

#8: Post by israguard (original poster) »

Thank you baldheadracing for posting the awesome video and your comments. I'm learning every week a bit more.

So this afternoon.. without a scale I adjusted the amount of grinds into the basket... I just couldn't wait anymore.. and there is an immediate difference in removing the puck.

I will tonight bring out the scale and set the machine to dose 17 to 18 grams of grounds.. and then ill make some shots.

We are on the right track...
After this is resolved... I will raise the other pressure issue I see with the Breville (on each initial shot only) which makes me nuts. I own two of these Breville models (work and Kitchen) and they both do it. Maybe the adjustments I am working on today will fix this..

Wamest regards, Shawn