WDT still getting bad channeling

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks.
coffeejoe87

Postby coffeejoe87 » Feb 11, 2018, 9:28 pm

I'm wondering what you all think... if there's a problem with my WDT or if it's something else that causing problems.

I'm using a mod'ed Delonghi Dedica with bottomless PF. I'm using a Baratza Virtuoso Grinder, and beans meant for espresso that were roasted 2 days ago.

I've been using 14.5g and been pulling about 29ish g which I feel is spot on, however the quality of the shot the last 5 seconds doesn't seem to be great. Really starts to spurt, channel around.

When I grind finer, my machine seems to choke. Coarser and I get a quick, spraying disaster of a flow.

I can't put much more coffee in the basket I have as it chokes the machine.

I've noticed on a couple of my pucks that they seemed to be split through the middle of them horizontally. I know you don't want to spend too much time looking at them, but don't know if that means anything or not.

For WDT.. here's what I've been doing.

Been pouring my grinds in the PF, with a cut out paper cut fit to my PF. I've dispersed the grind with a needle, stirring in all directions. Then I give it a little shake side to side. I take the cup out, and have an opening around the edges where the cup sat. I then give it a little shake side to side to spread the grind into that area. I usually don't have overfill, so tough to do any Chicago Chop or 6-12/3-9 leveling. I give it a couple taps on the counter to finish it up, tamp, and go for a pull. I have not yet getting a full bottom of the PF clearly filled with that dark espresso coming out evenly across the entire surface... usually some spots that are not getting any flow. As the flow builds, I'll sometimes get a pretty nice, narrow flow in the middle or close enough (usually accompanied with some minor spraying at the least). This is all best case scenario. The other 50% of the time, The stream moves all around, spurts, etc.

Let me know your thoughts if you have any! I really appreciate your time!

Bret

Postby Bret » Feb 11, 2018, 10:13 pm

Have you tried back to back shots, one with WDT, one without? That might be instructive. It might point to WDT technique if the one without WDT is better, or exonerate your WDT if the one without is largely the same.

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BaristaBoy E61

Postby BaristaBoy E61 » Feb 11, 2018, 11:57 pm

coffeejoe87 wrote:I'm using a mod'ed Delonghi Dedica with bottomless PF. I'm using a Baratza Virtuoso Grinder, and beans meant for espresso that were roasted 2 days ago.



What happens when you let your beans 'rest' for more than 2-days post roast?
"You didn't buy an Espresso Machine - You bought a Chemistry Set!"

coffeejoe87

Postby coffeejoe87 » replying to BaristaBoy E61 » Feb 12, 2018, 2:50 pm

Same. I'm getting this problem with beans roasted anywhere from 2-8 days. Haven't used many beans older than that.

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Jake_G

Postby Jake_G » Feb 13, 2018, 7:51 am

coffeejoe87 wrote:When I grind finer, my machine seems to choke. Coarser and I get a quick, spraying disaster of a flow.

I can't put much more coffee in the basket I have as it chokes the machine.


Have you tried the nickel test? I used to have this problem in a bad way and found out my shower screen was super-tamping my puck and often cracking it and causing all sorts of glorious spurts when locking the portafilter on. I ended up dosing less and grinding finer. Since the grinds sit below the rim of the basket in order to clear the shower screen, I made a puck grooming tool to level out the grounds more consistently.

Cheers!

- Jake

coffeejoe87

Postby coffeejoe87 » Feb 13, 2018, 11:55 pm

Good tips. I haven't tried the nickel test yet, but I definitely will try that out tomorrow morning. I think there's a chance my grinds could definitely be hitting the group head.

I'll give it a go. Thanks for the help!

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RapidCoffee
Team HB

Postby RapidCoffee » Feb 14, 2018, 10:46 pm

coffeejoe87 wrote:I'm using a mod'ed Delonghi Dedica with bottomless PF. I'm using a Baratza Virtuoso Grinder, and beans meant for espresso that were roasted 2 days ago.

I've been using 14.5g and been pulling about 29ish g which I feel is spot on, however the quality of the shot the last 5 seconds doesn't seem to be great. Really starts to spurt, channel around.

When I grind finer, my machine seems to choke. Coarser and I get a quick, spraying disaster of a flow.

I don't believe the primary problem is puck prep. You probably don't want to hear this, but you are trying to make espresso with marginal equipment. Delonghi espresso machine? No comment. Baratza Virtuoso? Decent grinder for non-espresso brewing (I've used one for years), but not for espresso. As you have already found, the adjustment steps are too coarse. If you're serious about espresso, consider upgrading both your grinder and your espresso machine.

Another potential problem: coffee beans. Only two days rest? Is this a home roast?
John

coffeejoe87

Postby coffeejoe87 » Feb 14, 2018, 11:04 pm

Yeah I totally agree and completely understand my ceiling is pretty low with the equipment I'm using at this time. I've seen enough half-decent shots with these machines that I know they're possible (but even then, I know it will be hard to replicate every time).

I will most likely upgrade at some point.

Another potential problem: coffee beans. Only two days rest? Is this a home roast?


I thought it's best to use freshly roasted beans? Do you need to wait longer than that?

I'm using high quality beans, roasted by some great local roasting companies. I've varied and tried few different ones for different tastes but they're all top notch when I have them poured by the pros ha.

mrjag

Postby mrjag » Feb 15, 2018, 1:19 am

Freshly roasted usually means the sweet spot between 7-14 days. It varies from bean to bean, but 2 days is generally too early and it still needs to degas some more.

erik82

Postby erik82 » Feb 15, 2018, 5:31 am

Too fresh beans indeed give more problems then they do good. I almost never open a bag of beans that's within a week after the roast date.