Timing of extraction starts when?

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.
spender

#1: Post by spender »

Hi - do you time the perfect extraction of 1 1/2 to 2 oz in 20 to 25 seconds from the time you turn the pump on, or from the time the espresso actually starts to flow? Thanks!

User avatar
jrtatl

#2: Post by jrtatl »

from the time you turn the pump on.
Jeremy

User avatar
another_jim
Team HB

#3: Post by another_jim »

From the time the first drops appear :twisted:
Jim Schulman

User avatar
another_jim
Team HB

#4: Post by another_jim »

Seriously, the timing rule isn't all that great. Moreover, it's more like 25 to 30 seconds, not 20 to 25.

Here's the proper rule:

0. Throw your stopwatch away

1. Stop your shot by the color of the flow. You want to stop it when the flow becomes light tan and translucent. If you see the crema at the entry point of the coffee into the cup become white, stop the shot, you've gone a little too far (although the white spot is a good way for beginners to to learn)

2. Look at and taste the shot. If it has too much volume, the crema is light (beige), is light bodied, and tastes slightly acidic (sour), grind finer for your next shot. If the volume is too short, the crema too dark (brown), and the taste is bitter and oily/lingering, grind coarser for your next shot.

Get used to doing this drill in your sleep **before** you start playing with dose amount, shot temperature or pressure. Adjusting your grinder to get the right flow is the basis for getting the correct extraction. This drill remains the same for any shot temperature, pressure or dose.
Jim Schulman

User avatar
Psyd

#5: Post by Psyd »

another_jim wrote:
0. Throw your stopwatch away

1. Stop your shot by the color of the flow.

This drill remains the same for any shot temperature, pressure or dose.
I use the stopwatch to remind me to check the flow when I'm putting together back to back extractions. I'll be preparing the second PF while the first groupe extracts, and the timer's (actually, the microwave's) beep reminds me that the end is near, pay attention. I usually have the grind adjusted that I get a great pull at about 27 seconds, so I'm mostly just watching the auto shut-off. I'll interrupt if necessary, but mostly I just watch and smile. Also, if I'm dialling in a new grind, the stopwatch will convert pull time deviations to notches on the Mazzers fairly accurately. Not pinpoint, but better than a SWAG.
OTOH, how does your pre-infusion figure in? I've been thinking about putting a switch on the Astoria's rotary pump, and I want to start out right. If you pre-infuse for six seconds (or five, at 3.5 Bar?) does that make your extractions start to blonde at twenty? How does the pre-infusion affenct the resulting time?
F'rinstance, if I were to pull a straight shot that starts to blonde at twenty-six seconds from the time I start the pump, how long does the same shot take to blonde from pump start after the six second pre-infusion?
Espresso Sniper
One Shot, One Kill

LMWDP #175

User avatar
another_jim
Team HB

#6: Post by another_jim »

Psyd wrote: F'rinstance, if I were to pull a straight shot that starts to blonde at twenty-six seconds from the time I start the pump, how long does the same shot take to blonde from pump start after the six second pre-infusion?
I don't know. I doubt anyone elses data will be good for your machine, or even your blend on any given day.

This is one area where home-baristas have a huge advantage over the pros -- we taste almost all the shots we pull. This is why I'm always amazed about these threads. Why bother with all the arcane diagnostics if you know what the shot tasted like? If it's black, bitter, and too thick, grind coarser, if it's light, sour and too thin, grind finer.

Maybe there's other, ultra-secret grinder adjustments nobody's told me about :wink:
Jim Schulman

User avatar
Psyd

#7: Post by Psyd »

another_jim wrote:I don't know. I doubt anyone elses data will be good for your machine,
Yahbut, if your machine on your blend on a given day takes thirty seconds for a good shot and the pre-infusion adds five seconds to your shot to make the thing work, it would follow that the pre-infusion time doesn't really 'count' in the pull.
If, however, the five second pre-infusion takes five seconds off the motorized pump time (i.e., the whole shebang takes thirty seconds, including the pre-infusion) then I'd say that it does. While I'm happy to do my own experimentation, the smartest discoveries are made by not repeating work that has already been completed.
So, anyone out there that's willing to share their discoveries?
Espresso Sniper
One Shot, One Kill

LMWDP #175

User avatar
cannonfodder
Team HB

#8: Post by cannonfodder »

I just pull until it looks right provided it is not taking 50 seconds (or 15). For what it is worth, I count from the time I hit the button. That includes a 6 second preinfuse on mains pressure (3bar) before the pump engages. Most of my shots run in 30-35 second range depending on blend. Most however, are in the 30 range and I do not use a stop watch; I use my eyes/nose/tongue to calibrate the proper time/dose and temperature.

Don't over complicate the process, it is just espresso.
Dave Stephens

User avatar
Psyd

#9: Post by Psyd »

cannonfodder wrote: Don't over complicate the process, it is just espresso.
Yep, that was the idea. Simply adopt techniques that have been tested by others instead of going thorough the process myself. Sort of my Motus Operandi on these fora. It beats having to get all the complicated computer driven testing equipment!
If I have a fairly good idea of what the expected outcome of a project is going to be, and what results to expect, I can be fairly sure that I'm doing something right when I get similar results to those of those smarter folk that have gone before me. Saves a lot of shooting in the dark.
Of course, if I get bored, I'll try new things, but like most things in life, you should know the rules before you start breaking them... ; >
Espresso Sniper
One Shot, One Kill

LMWDP #175

AUSTINrob

#10: Post by AUSTINrob »

From many sources I have read the recommended extraction time for a shot is approximately 25-30 seconds from the time you pull the lever to begin the extraction. Well I just read on a different website today that that 25-30 second count should begin once the espresso starts pouring from the spout:
"For 1.5 ounces of espresso, the extraction should take between 23-30 seconds where the time starts when the espresso begins to flow from the spouts. To prepare excellent espresso, the pour should look like warm honey dripping from the spouts."
I believe that I have been doing it the more popular way by starting the timer immediately upon pulling the lever to initiate the shot, but how are you guys doing it??
-Rob