Nixter,nixter wrote:Maybe you don't have to plug the holes when using a larger pitcher and more milk but with a smaller amount of milk and the power of the Oscar steam, plugging the holes makes sense I think.
I also own an Oscar. I had a $20 Krups prior to this that made very good microfoam: tight bubbles, excellent stretch. I've had my Oscar for about a week now. I've used soy milk, whole milk, 2% milk, etc.. I've read (and tried) most of the tips posted here. Pretty much, like you, I get very little foam and a lot of separation. It is possible that I'm expecting too much stretch and should focus more on a consistent foam without much separation. I'll keep practicing.
At full-open, the Oscar can get about 8oz of milk to go from 40 degrees to 160 degrees in about 10 seconds. I have to shut the steam off at 120 and the thermometer will coast up to 160. I believe it's steam capacity/pressure is designed similar to their commercial machines where they use large containers of milk. I called Nuova Simonelli and discussed the issue. They told me they make a 4-hole tip to address this particular problem that has a smaller diameter hole than the standard 4-hole tip that comes with the machine.
I'm not sure if I'm going to buy the Nuova Simonelli tip, but I'm definitely looking into using a tip that produces less volumes of steam yet at a higher pressure (if anyone knows of some good ones, I would appreciate your input).
I hope that helps. Since we both have Oscars, maybe we can share some of our experiences. I'm pretty much a newbie and I'm still trying to get a really good shot out of it. I bought it used (in excellent condition), but it may need backflushing, etc. Right now I'm practicing on some preground illy coffee to see if I can get my 20-30 second double shot right (watching the color, the crema,etc).
Anyway, good luck to you.