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The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
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IMAWriter
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IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,698
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 2:47pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

Lifestar Said:

Well the downside is I came down with the stomach flu on Thursday and my stomach is still chruning if I east anything stronger than toast.  Wonderful beans showed up on  Friday and I cant do a thing with them.

Posted March 8, 2009 link

Reminds me of the twilight Zone episode where Burgess Meredith has books and "all the time in the world"...then breaks his glasses.

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
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weiv
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Joined: 21 Jun 2005
Posts: 29
Location: Burlingame, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Silvia
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 8:18pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

My Vario arrived Thursday. After a few days, I found it was very easy to dial in a good grind level. It is relatively quiet. Portaholder works, but not as well as I would hope on my bottomless portafilter - I still have to be careful. Timer function is neat, but I pre-dose (regular/decaf combo and what not).

Today I cleaned my Rocky with doser in order to figure out which one goes up for sale. Rocky is heavier, louder and way messier. The same amount of coffee put in produces much less ground coffee (the rest stays in Rocky).

With this knowledge, if I had to choose between a new Vario and a new Rocky, I'd easily go for Vario. On the other hand, if you already have a Rocky that works well, the situation is more muddy. Vario is definitely a generation ahead of Rocky. It dials in more precisely, it is less messy (although if you pre-dose, the last few seconds will throw grounds all around the counter top). Noise wise, Vario seems to be a bit quieter. Speed is about the same (again, I pre-dose, so the last few beans take more time than if the hopper was full). With Rocky, I had to put duct tape in doser to sweep properly, I replaced the hopper cap with click-clack, and I removed the shield in the hopper. At the moment, I have no obvious needs to do any modifications on Vario.

I'll wait a few more weeks, but I think it is Rocky that will go.
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IMAWriter
Senior Member
IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,698
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 9:16pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

weiv Said:

My Vario arrived Thursday. After a few days, I found it was very easy to dial in a good grind level. It is relatively quiet. Portaholder works, but not as well as I would hope on my bottomless portafilter - I still have to be careful. Timer function is neat, but I pre-dose (regular/decaf combo and what not).

Posted March 8, 2009 link

When you say "pre-dose" do you mean "grind by the dose?"
That is, putting only the amount of beans you wish to grind?
Wasn't quite sure what you meant.
Sounds like you did all you could with your Rocky.
Please keep us up on your Vario adventures!

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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weiv
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Jun 2005
Posts: 29
Location: Burlingame, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Silvia
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 9:25pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

Yes, I put in what I want to grind. The reason is that my wife prefers some decaf, while I like regular espresso.

Regards,
v.
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IMAWriter
Senior Member
IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,698
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 9:43pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

weiv Said:

Yes, I put in what I want to grind. The reason is that my wife prefers some decaf, while I like regular espresso.

Regards,
v.

Posted March 8, 2009 link

been there done that.
I always  ground per shot in my SJ...needed a tamper on top of the beans to prevent "popcorning."

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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acp
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Joined: 8 Mar 2009
Posts: 7
Location: The Great Northwest
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 9:49pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

How do ceramic burrs stand up to rocks? Better than steel?
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weiv
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Jun 2005
Posts: 29
Location: Burlingame, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Silvia
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 10:04pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

acp Said:

How do ceramic burrs stand up to rocks? Better than steel?

Posted March 8, 2009 link

That's a good question. I'm not sure how would I test that.

I do remember that Rocky's speed increased when I replaced the burrs after about 2 years of usage.
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acp
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Joined: 8 Mar 2009
Posts: 7
Location: The Great Northwest
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Mar 8, 2009, 10:14pm
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

So for those of you who have one, how easy is it to learn the control panel? Is it intuitive? Logical? Accurate? I've been thinking of upgrading from the Virtuoso and this looks pretty nice.
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weiv
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Jun 2005
Posts: 29
Location: Burlingame, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Silvia
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Mon Mar 9, 2009, 9:29am
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

I'd say there are a wee bit more buttons than I like. I'd probably go for another lever to select manual/espresso/drip/french timing. Grind setting is definitely different than Rocky or another grinder where you make adjustments by rotating the hopper. However, once you try it a bit, it is not hard to get comfortable with. As for accurate, I guess you are really asking how repeatable it is. That I don't know yet - I didn't go through enough coffee to say.
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JohnBurridge
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JohnBurridge
Joined: 15 Feb 2009
Posts: 20
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Rocket Giotto Premium
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos
Drip: Technivorm, Hario Woodneck
Posted Tue Mar 10, 2009, 11:48am
Subject: Re: The Baratza Vario Grinder Owner's Thread
 

Well, I've had my Vario for all of 20 minutes, but I seem to be suffering from similar problems to DaveZ, only I haven't even it made it operate successfully once. All I get are blue lights and counting timers, but no motor. There was no manual of any kind in the box (I don't know if that is normal) that I could find, either. The only thing I could think of is that the hopper seems to sit a little loosely at the top, so maybe I need to lock it in more, though I have my doubts since there appears to be very few ways to insert it. DaveZ seems to have found a workaround by fiddling with the sequence of button presses, but no dice for me.

Anyone else overcome this? I hope it's only a hiccup, though I can see myself hoofing it back down to the Green Beanery in the near future.
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