What is the correct method for shot timing? - Page 2

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.
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cafeIKE
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#11: Post by cafeIKE »

Shot timing should be used to get in the ball park, then discarded. An arbitrary 26s can be 2s too long or 2s too short depending on the weather and the bean age. Color is a more reliable indicator of when to end the shot.



I use a binary clock and just glance at it when I start the pump and stop the shot based on color.
The mental math is fun and NO BEEPS :evil:

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BradyButler

#12: Post by BradyButler »

Agreed with those that suggest that shot timing is really only a guideline sorta thing. Useful for getting you within the ballpark. However the question stands, nevermind that as it stands it probably has no answer.

The "split the difference" approach is probably good - minimizing variation due to different methods. So it is probably a useful method when you aren't sure what the other person meant. Awfully imprecise if you do know what they meant though.

Let me ask a slightly different question then, one that I suspect has a clearer answer: "What do you suppose your roaster meant when they put 26 seconds on the bag?"

Those time displays on La Marzoccos (FB-80 too, checked last night) are pretty darned handy...
LMWDP #379
Carolina Espresso Services - "Quality Service for Espresso Equipment"

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another_jim
Team HB

#13: Post by another_jim »

BradyButler wrote:Let me ask a slightly different question then, one that I suspect has a clearer answer: "What do you suppose your roaster meant when they put 26 seconds on the bag?"
"They" may know what they mean when they say 26 seconds, or 202F, or 19 grams; but the only other people who share that knowledge are mind readers.

Precise instruction based on unknown equipment and techniques are meaningless. Roasters' instructions would be a lot more useful if they said something like use a high temperature, a low dose, and a long pull -- since instructions like these can be adapted to any grinder, machine and basket.
Jim Schulman

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BradyButler

#14: Post by BradyButler »

Considering the extent that "start timer when you push the button" is taught at barista training courses, it seems likely that this is the approach that they use. I've been through and helped out at a few, including Counter Culture's and the SCAA's, and that's the approach that I've always seen and used. That's not to suggest that this is a more correct method, but it does seem to be more common in commercial circles.

Has anyone run across a roaster or other commercial entity teaching any of the other ways of timing a shot?

Perhaps we could take an informal poll, and see how roasters actually do it? Anyone associated with a roaster care to jump in here?

To your other points... do you have any reason to think that, for a top-tier roaster, these recommendations were based on anything other than a La Marzocco or other DB machine, checked with Scace, and weighed accurately? Doesn't "28 seconds" read as "slower pull" to most of us anyway? How would a less-specific recommendations be more useful?
LMWDP #379
Carolina Espresso Services - "Quality Service for Espresso Equipment"

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HB
Admin

#15: Post by HB »

BradyButler wrote:How would a less-specific recommendations be more useful?
For a roaster's commercial clientele, it's convenient if they speak in terms of the equipment they have in common. For everyone else, precise brew parameters derived from a specific setup are only useful if you know how to apply them to the equipment you have before you. In other words, not everyone knows how to map La Marzocco-speak, nor, in my opinion, should the roaster require that non-commercial clientele do so.
Dan Kehn

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BradyButler

#16: Post by BradyButler replying to HB »

That presumes that the majority of the roasters' clients also run La Marzocco machines. I'm not sure that's the case. We run an Astoria 3 group at our shop, and the majority of the machines in my city are hX - Rancilio, Nuova Simonelli, La Cimbali, and Astoria. I have to translate just like everyone else.

Isn't it more important for recommendations to be consistent roaster-to-roaster? So once you figure out how to translate the recommendation for Black Cat to your rig you can get to good results more quickly when you get a bag of La Forza.

These are just starting point recommendations, after all. I understand that some people take them as gospel, but is that the roasters' fault for providing detailed recommendations?

Good discussion.
LMWDP #379
Carolina Espresso Services - "Quality Service for Espresso Equipment"

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barry

#17: Post by barry »

These are just starting point recommendations, after all. I understand that some people take them as gospel, but is that the roasters' fault for providing detailed recommendations?
My feeling is the more specific the information, whether it be brew data or even tasting notes, the less translatable that information becomes.

mitch236
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#18: Post by mitch236 »

BradyButler wrote:That presumes that the majority of the roasters' clients also run La Marzocco machines. I'm not sure that's the case. We run an Astoria 3 group at our shop, and the majority of the machines in my city are hX - Rancilio, Nuova Simonelli, La Cimbali, and Astoria. I have to translate just like everyone else.

Isn't it more important for recommendations to be consistent roaster-to-roaster? So once you figure out how to translate the recommendation for Black Cat to your rig you can get to good results more quickly when you get a bag of La Forza.

These are just starting point recommendations, after all. I understand that some people take them as gospel, but is that the roasters' fault for providing detailed recommendations?

Good discussion.
I don't see how a variety of roaster could ever develop an industry standard since different equipment has differing profiles. It might be better to give their parameters with some additional notes about how to tune to their idea of how it should taste. Then again, maybe you want something different than the roaster intended anyway? I find preparing coffee to be more art than science. The best advantage about being a home barista is I decide what tastes good to me and I attempt to recreate that.

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Kristi

#19: Post by Kristi »

BradyButler wrote: Has anyone run across a roaster or other commercial entity teaching any of the other ways of timing a shot?
Jeff Pentel at Redbird http://www.redbirdcoffee.com/redbirdespressoa.html
Kris