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A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
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Discussions > Espresso > Espresso Mods > A portafilter...  
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jrfeler
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Joined: 22 Dec 2012
Posts: 28
Location: Palo Alto, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus III
Grinder: Macap M4
Posted Wed Jun 12, 2013, 1:03pm
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

Someone sniped a photo of me while I wasn't paying attention... But hey, there is plenty to smile awkwardly about here!

If anybody has any questions about how it was made or how it works (or what its like having a brewtus as my roommate in my tiny college dorm room), I would be happy to answer.

Feel free to give any constructive criticism too!

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CoffeeRon
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CoffeeRon
Joined: 26 Apr 2009
Posts: 652
Location: Tacoma Wa.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Wega Lyra, Europiccola(still...
Grinder: K-30 Vario,Pharos, Vario-W,...
Vac Pot: Sunbeam CoffeeMaster
Drip: Melita BCM-4
Roaster: FR SR500,B-1600, SC/TO
Posted Wed Jun 12, 2013, 3:52pm
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

VERY nice work! I'm guessing a very good manufacturing/engineering  job is in your future.
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frcn
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frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
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Posted Wed Jun 12, 2013, 5:01pm
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

Threading?  Why not embedded magnets!

 
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Dayglow
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Dayglow
Joined: 5 Oct 2007
Posts: 57
Location: Greenville, NC
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Wed Jun 12, 2013, 5:21pm
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

I'd buy one, I love the idea! My only concern would be with the threads at some point seizing as with no real surface or texture to grip, if things get sticky, it might get tough to separate the sections.
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Paul_Pratt
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Paul_Pratt
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Posted Wed Jun 12, 2013, 5:53pm
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

Hey that looks like mine, patent pending.

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jrfeler
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Joined: 22 Dec 2012
Posts: 28
Location: Palo Alto, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus III
Grinder: Macap M4
Posted Wed Jun 12, 2013, 5:55pm
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

A few quick notes: The whole body is stainless, and the handle is rosewood of some type. You might notice that the body is fairly tall. I wanted to be able to fit a triple basket with the spouts on. I succeeded in that regard. Also, someone PM'ed me to ask what it cost to make, but I have no problem sharing. All of the raw materials to make both the PF and the tamper, including a single and a double spout and leftover stock, ran about $60--though I am good friends with the metal supplier in the area, and he gives me good deals. I don't care to think about how many man hours went into it...  

I was actually very close to using magnets but elected not too as I discovered the following during prototyping.
1) if you use magnets that are too weak, the bottom part can fly off when you knock the puck out.
2) If you tamp while holding the PF at an angle, the bottom can be displaced.
3) Getting nice alignment was difficult.

I realize now that many of these problems could be solved by making the geometry of of the two pieces such that they can only fit together in the right way.  If I build a second one, I am definitely going to give that a shot. I liked threads for their relative simplicity and aesthetic. Threading to me is very "analog."

As for the threads seizing: I haven't had this problem yet, though I can definitely see that happening. The magnets would probably solve this problem too. I'll let you know. I've been using it consistently for a week, including my presentation at which I went through about two pounds of coffee, and I have not noticed any buildup.
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CoffeeRon
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CoffeeRon
Joined: 26 Apr 2009
Posts: 652
Location: Tacoma Wa.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Wega Lyra, Europiccola(still...
Grinder: K-30 Vario,Pharos, Vario-W,...
Vac Pot: Sunbeam CoffeeMaster
Drip: Melita BCM-4
Roaster: FR SR500,B-1600, SC/TO
Posted Thu Jun 13, 2013, 5:05am
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

Just wondering- did you consider maybe a much larger coarser thread? Maybe one that would lock in a quarter turn  or so? I'm thinking like four threads that encompass like a quarter of the circumference each. might be more durable in the long run and easily cleaned of any buildup. a small O-ring could help keep it in place. Just a thought.
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emradguy
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emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
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Posted Thu Jun 13, 2013, 5:42am
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

that's cool!  Nice job as well.  I would second considering a larger thread with a longer pitch, so that it only takes a quick twist to get it on and off and makes for easier cleanup.

Off topic: I'm surprised you haven't sold your M4 yet. People don't know what their missing. IMO it's a bargain at $300. Can I ask what you've replaced it with?

 
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Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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calblacksmith
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calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,468
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
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Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Thu Jun 13, 2013, 5:48am
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

There really isn't any pressure on the PF AFTER the basket, the bottom of the PF is just there to act like a funnel, so it does not need a tight or even strong fit. A 4 lead screw thread would be very expensive to manufacture and good rare earth magnets just may be strong enough provided the shape was right in the fitup.

For myself, I just use the bottomless all the time, I never split a shot and have no need for a double spout and I like what I get from a "naked" PF as far as the coffee goes but it is an interesting concept and you did a good job with it, I hope you get a good grade on the project!

Others may have (and I am SURE they do) a different view of the naked PF and think of them only as a training aid and prefer to have a spouted PF. :D

 
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Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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jrfeler
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Dec 2012
Posts: 28
Location: Palo Alto, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus III
Grinder: Macap M4
Posted Thu Jun 13, 2013, 9:30am
Subject: Re: A portafilter for the space constrained among us...
 

Man I should have consulted the geeks before I made the thing. These are all excellent ideas.

The reason the threads are so fine was that I was concerned about having too thin of a wall thickness. The total thickness is about .175". Split between two pieces. I don't have great intuition as to how changing the thread size would work out, but perhaps it could be made to work. I would have to go consult math for a while.

The four lead screw would probably be the ideal solution because of the ease of alignment. Finding a tap for a non standard diameter like this would be a challenge, but I'm sure there is a workaround. I'm still on the magnet train for version 2.0 though.

As for the M4: I love it, but as I mentioned I live in a college dorm room, and horizontal surfaces are at a premium (those photos were most definitely not taken in my room). Probably going the baratza or hand grinder route.
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