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Discussions > Espresso > Grinders -... > Grinder...  
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LJSquishy
Senior Member


Joined: 4 Oct 2013
Posts: 27
Location: Spokane, WA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Breville Dual Boiler...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Sat Oct 5, 2013, 7:22am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

CMIN Said:

Gaggia Baby Twin is the blacksheep in the Gaggia family, so good choice avoiding it.

If you mean the SGC videos, i don't know what was up with theirs, some of the CC1 steaming they did was slow.... mine is way faster then that, and other CCQ owners said the same thing, not sure if they had the knob only turned half way or what. The Silvia is a little stronger on the steam side, but the CC1 is a nice smooth controlled steam, which makes it awesome for newbies trying to learn to steam milk right. Even then SCG did a comparo with a couple machines making lattes, and the CC1 was only like a min and a half off the pace of an h/x Oscar, the Silva, like another 7-10 minutes after. Reliability has been awesome for me and a few others I've chatted with, mines an original model as well that I added the updated parts BillC sent out to me. Some people have had some odd glitches but seems rare, for that matter people have had issues with the Silva and it's basically the same old workhorse it's been since it came out, so ya never know lol. About the boilers, yeh the CC1 is an insulated Stainless one, but it's the largest one in it's class, Silvia is like 12 oz, the CC1 is 17oz which is pretty damn big for this class and price range lol. That with the pid = great temp stability with repeated shots. Boiler material doesn't mean much to me, you have people who are worried of lead poisoning with brass boilers which is complete bs lol. As far as distributers, Bill is a smaller company and may not have the production capability to handle all the stores, and it's still kinda unknown, just like how people still buy the Rocky Grinder even though it pales for espresso vs others now but people "know" it.

ChrisCoffee I know sells the CC1. Nothing against the Silvia, it's just outdated and other machines offer more for the money now, Le'Lit even has a pid'd machine that's cheaper (the PL041TQE). You'll have to learn temp surfing on a Silvia and even then not really know what temp your at and it's not consistent like a pid, can be done, just annoyed me lol. That and the boiler cool down period, no autofill etc. If I was gonna start out with something that basic, I'd get the Classic which performs the same for a couple hundred $ less (and you can put the Silva steam wand on it for cheap).

Avoid the Rocky Grinder at all cost, you'll want to bang your head against a wall trying to dial it in. SCG for some reason is obsessed  with that grinder. You won't see it recommended for espresso on the forums or other companies even really anymore.

Check your area though like someone said above as you may snag a deal on a grinder on Craigslist etc

Posted October 5, 2013 link

Thank you so much for going into more detail. I am taking another look at the CC1 because it looks like it fits both my needs and wants in a reasonable price range. The SCG videos are the ones I was referring to on steam power, and I did watch the video where one of the gals tested 5 machines making 4 lattes and the CC1 did do really well. The Silvia didn't do so well. I've scratched the Rocky off of my list now which helps narrow the grinder search down more. I did make a thread in the Machine section hoping for more opinions on which machine would suit me best. I'm just worried I'm going to make a big mistake and either choose a machine that's not going to last 5-7 years or choose one that frustrates me (like maybe the temp surfing) when I want to make 2 drinks. Thanks again for your help and experience with the CC1!
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EarlGray
Senior Member


Joined: 4 Oct 2013
Posts: 2
Location: East
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Sat Oct 5, 2013, 8:47am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

There really isn't much to "surfing" the Silvia - just draw off some hot water and wait the 30-ish seconds for "heating" light to go off. You'll probably want to pull off some hot water to heat your cups in any case.

The established reliability of the Silvia and the large base of units in use (read parts/service availability if needed) were
important factors in my deciding to buy the one that I have.
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onthego
Senior Member
onthego
Joined: 3 Jul 2005
Posts: 231
Location: Anchorage, AK
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Salvatore One Black, Silvia...
Grinder: Macap M4 Stepless, Rocky DL,...
Drip: Krups
Posted Sun Oct 6, 2013, 4:10pm
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

CMIN Said:


Avoid the Rocky Grinder at all cost, you'll want to bang your head against a wall trying to dial it in. SCG for some reason is obsessed  with that grinder. You won't see it recommended for espresso on the forums or other companies even really anymore.

Posted October 5, 2013 link

What you will find is a cult of Rocky haters on some of the blogs who I suspect have no experience at all using the machine.  It is actually a pretty good little grinder.  I picked one up for a good price about 9 years ago and have never felt the need to smash my head against a wall or anything else as a result of using the grinder.  Its shortcoming are well documented. It uses click stops to adjust the grind and the clicks are further spaced than some of the other grinders out there.  When the click locks into place there is just a slight amount of movement still possible that bothers some people.  Those are fair criticisms.  Those failings can be easily worked around.  The Rocky has the same internal components as the Rancilio MD40 commecrial grinder.  It is built like a tank. I doubt you could ever wear it out using it as a home grinder.  It employs 50 mm planar burrs and the ground coffee produced is about what you would expect with a commercial grinder using burrs of that size.  No, it is not as good as some higher priced grinders out there but it is not the piece of junk some have reported it to be.  I use mine for the Hario V60 pourover coffee and as a backup to my espresso grinder.  You can find used Rocky grinders in good condition for around $200-$225.  

Here is a good link to a Rocky test: click here

Baratza has refurbished Varios available for sale on their web site for a very good price.  I have never used a vario but I use an Encore daily and have used the Virtuoso as well and can recommend Baratza if you decide to go that way.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,506
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Sun Oct 6, 2013, 6:42pm
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

Oh I know,  I've used it a bunch of times. Too much of a pain imo trying to dial in and play with dose amounts especially as the beans age. Plus I single dose and didn't like the Rocky for that or its high retention. It's a workhorse and will last no doubt, just outdated. The Vario is so much easier to dial in,  basically only play with the micro a bit here and there depending on beans type and dose amount.
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onthego
Senior Member
onthego
Joined: 3 Jul 2005
Posts: 231
Location: Anchorage, AK
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Salvatore One Black, Silvia...
Grinder: Macap M4 Stepless, Rocky DL,...
Drip: Krups
Posted Sun Oct 6, 2013, 10:49pm
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

CMIN Said:

Oh  The Vario is so much easier to dial in,  basically only play with the micro a bit here and there depending on beans type and dose amount.

Posted October 6, 2013 link

I read so many good things about the Vario, it is tempting to get one just to try it out.  But I have more grinders than I need right now.  The Vario would be on my short list if I was just getting started.
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Whitcoatsyndrom
Senior Member
Whitcoatsyndrom
Joined: 25 Apr 2013
Posts: 178
Location: Roanoke, VA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Expobar Office Pulser
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: Newco-OCS 12
Roaster: HG/BM
Posted Mon Oct 7, 2013, 5:20am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

I started on espresso within the last year and made a few decisions that bolster everything you all have been saying.  I started out with a Baratza Virtuoso Preciso.  The grinds were quite nice, as was the price.  However, within a month I was so fed up with the machine seeming to change grind settings over night that I got rid of it.  I experienced many of the same problems other Preciso users have already outlined.  I also experienced the absolute greatest customer service I've ever seen.  Baratza wants happy customers and I'll continue to be one of them...just with a Vario.  I've experienced no problems with it and love the fluffy grounds and ease of single dosing without large retention.  As it applies to this thread, I also use a Gaggia Classic (I purchased it for many of the reasons you all have outlined, far cheaper than the Silvia with similar technology with the exception of brass vs aluminum boiler).  I was surprised to read that the thread creator didn't like the look of the GC!  I love it's rocker-buttons and somewhat goofy outline...comon, it's an espresso machine!  That being said, I really wish I could have afforded the CC1.  Having the extra control of built in PID and pre-infusion time/shot time settings is pretty slick if you ask me, but it was hard to justify at almost 2X the price when I wasn't sure how much I would actually love it.  When it's time to upgrade I'll most likely be looking in that direction.
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Burner0000
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jul 2011
Posts: 1,090
Location: Cambridge, Ontario Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia, VFA Expres...
Grinder: Macap MX/VFA N1464/Kyocera...
Drip: Manual Drip, French Press
Roaster: Behmor 1600 / Sonofresco
Posted Mon Oct 7, 2013, 6:29am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

The CC1 is a good buy over the Silvia.  It has the largest boiler in the single boiler world.  Has an additional 5 oz over the Silvia.  Also has removable elements if you ever need to replace them.. The Silvia you will have to replace the entire boiler.  Yes the Silvia has commercial steam parts but like any parts they eventually will need to be replaced.  If you ever need to replace any on the CC1 they will at least be a bit cheaper.  Hoses with clamps are very easy to replace and can be found at a local hardware store.

Bottom line the CC1 in most ways is the better version of the Silvia.


Note on temp surfing on the Silvia.. There isn't much to it.. I find that preping my shot right after the light goes out is perfect timing for me.  So I really don't "surf" at all.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,506
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Mon Oct 7, 2013, 8:55am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

onthego Said:

I read so many good things about the Vario, it is tempting to get one just to try it out.  But I have more grinders than I need right now.  The Vario would be on my short list if I was just getting started.

Posted October 6, 2013 link

If Rancilio would make the Rocky stepless from the factory that'd be awesome. They've basically left it untouched all these years, and only a few updates to the Silvia in the last decade when others have updated their machines or brought out new models in the class with a bunch of features, pid etc. Personally I don't think they care about the "consumer market" class, their bread and butter is their high end stuff.

I wish i went with the Vario lol, I snagged a deal on a Preciso I couldn't pass up. then shortly after used a Vario, taste in the cup is right there with grinders like the K6 or Super Jolley and way better then the Preciso (Preciso is still great, but I way prefer the taste of larger flat burrs), and love the no/little retention that all Baratzas have since I like single dosing when it's just the woman and I and not friends etc over (then I just load the hopper up and weigh the bin).

Rocky Grinder will pry out live anyone in their life time though lol, built like a tank.
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LJSquishy
Senior Member


Joined: 4 Oct 2013
Posts: 27
Location: Spokane, WA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Breville Dual Boiler...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Mon Oct 7, 2013, 9:18am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

Thanks, all!

I'm going to pony up for a Vario I think (probably refurbished). :)

I've now decided against the Silvia and am going to choose between the Crossland CC1 and Breville Dual Boiler. After coupons/ebates, the BDB is about $250 more than the CC1. Tough decision.
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moosepucky
Senior Member
moosepucky
Joined: 6 Jun 2009
Posts: 155
Location: USA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Pasquini Livia 90 auto
Grinder: Super Jolly - Forte BG -...
Vac Pot: Cona - Santos
Drip: Bodum - Chemex - Hario -...
Roaster: Hottop KN-8828-B
Posted Mon Oct 7, 2013, 10:42am
Subject: Re: Grinder Suggestions for Silvia
 

LJSquishy Said:

Thanks, all!

I'm going to pony up for a Vario I think (probably refurbished). :)

I've now decided against the Silvia and am going to choose between the Crossland CC1 and Breville Dual Boiler. After coupons/ebates, the BDB is about $250 more than the CC1. Tough decision.

Posted October 7, 2013 link

If you can squeeze the little extra $$$  for the Vario-W go that route (the weight based option is slick) as it will make that grinder stick around a lot longer on your counter.  One of the better choices I've made.  I use the Vario-W (ceramic burrs) and a super jolly for espresso and a Preciso for pour over and press grinding.  I've ran the Vario-W all the way as coarse is it will go and it is a nice press grind so theoretically it could be a one and only grinder (i.e. one size fits all) but you will want more than one grinder before you are done and the Vario-W will stick around to fill the "other slot" once you get another (higher quality) grinder later on.

No help for you on your two options for a machine other than to suggest that you spend more on a grinder and skimp on the machine.  An excellent grinder and OK espresso machine will make better espresso than a "coffee grinder/chopper" and the best espresso machine ever made
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