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$10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > $10 portafilter...  
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
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Posted Fri Jan 27, 2006, 3:56pm
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

mineralman55 Said:

So what does your Ventrano read when it is flowing a shot?

Posted January 27, 2006 link

The pressure is pretty much maxed out at 8.5-9 bar once the pump ramps up (take a few seconds). The pressure shouldn't drop much under flow unless you're pulling a cafe crema. It's difficult to get accurate readings from the Vetrano gauge (marked only at 0, 8, 12, and 15 bar), and the gauge is out of focus in this pic, but you can tell that the pressure is definitely over 8 bar.

That's why I don't consider a built-in pressure gauge to be a necessity. Once you set the max brew pressure correctly (usually to 8-9 bar), there's not much to be gained from monitoring the pressure during the shot. You should hit close to the max pressure every time (unless your pressure is set 'way too high). You're much better off monitoring the shot time, volume, color, etc. - and of course the taste. (Now a realtime brew temp sensor might be nice... :-)

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CoffeeToolsAppJon
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Posted Fri Jan 27, 2006, 10:23pm
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

RapidCoffee Said:

Uh, no. You have to unscrew the gauge (at least) before brewing. This is for setting the brew pressure, not monitoring it during the pour.

Actually, that brings up an interesting point. The measured pressure may be slightly higher using a PF gauge, since there is no liquid pushing out through the coffee grinds. It should give you the maximum pressure setting - anything more will cause pressure to be released through the overpressure/relief valve. I assume it's useful nonetheless (since you can purchase commercial versions).

Has anyone checked for differences between brew pressure gauge readings during a shot, and pressure measurements from a PF gauge such as this one?

Posted December 8, 2005 link

ok check this out... this person solved the issue of finding out brewing pressure..

it is a similar setup as this only with a small faucet opened just enough to let out 2oz in 25 seconds...

Click Here (www.home-barista.com)

might be worth a look.

jon

 
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http://www.coffeeToolsApp.com
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
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Location: Rapid City, SD
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Espresso: La Spaziale S1
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Posted Fri Jan 27, 2006, 11:10pm
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

Thanks for the link. Here's a followup post. Lots of great discussions on Home Barista for the technically minded.
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Ozark_61
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Ozark_61
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Posted Sat Jan 28, 2006, 11:16pm
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

Is there a trick for sealing the reducer to the pf?  Mine isn't quite 3/8" at the bottom, but I can't seem to get a tight seal even with 15+ winds of teflon tape - and I'm sure I couldn't find metric plumbing fittings anywhere around here!

Geoff
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
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Posted Sun Jan 29, 2006, 7:54am
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

Ozark_61 Said:

Is there a trick for sealing the reducer to the pf?  Mine isn't quite 3/8" at the bottom, but I can't seem to get a tight seal even with 15+ winds of teflon tape - and I'm sure I couldn't find metric plumbing fittings anywhere around here!

Posted January 28, 2006 link

Sorry to hear this, and wish I could help. Is this a Gaggia PF? I'm using a commercial Rancilio PF, and there's no problem with the seal. All it takes is one twist of teflon tape. I believe 3/8" is the standard fitting for PF spouts.
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GrantT
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GrantT
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Posted Sun Jan 29, 2006, 8:50am
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

Ozark_61 Said:

Is there a trick for sealing the reducer to the pf?  Mine isn't quite 3/8" at the bottom, but I can't seem to get a tight seal even with 15+ winds of teflon tape - and I'm sure I couldn't find metric plumbing fittings anywhere around here!

Geoff

Posted January 28, 2006 link

I had no problem sealing either with a couple wraps.....the thread on my two different PFs are both 3/8 NPT.

Actually....that may be the problem....in the fitting you are using a 3/8" National Pipe Thread, or just a 3/8" "normal" thread....like on a 3/8 nut/bolt?   A standard 3/8" thread will NOT work properly...it has to be a tapered pipe threaded fitting.

Grant

 
"Wake up and Smell the Coffee"
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Ozark_61
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Ozark_61
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Posted Sun Jan 29, 2006, 9:00am
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

I think you got it - I checked the trash and the label on the coupling shows FPT, but I grabbed it out of the NPT box... oops!
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Ozark_61
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Ozark_61
Joined: 18 Dec 2004
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Location: Springfield, MO
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ECM Giotto
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Roaster: Behmor 1600, SC/TO, Poppery...
Posted Sun Jan 29, 2006, 3:27pm
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

Actually - there's a few options at the hardware shop - but I think I did have the right one in the begining.  I bought a 3/8 x 1/4 FPT coupling.  There are some other fittings, flare, compression, etc, but maybe the one I bought is just defective.  Of course I would never rule out user error... ;-)
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poison
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poison
Joined: 11 Aug 2004
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Posted Thu Feb 9, 2006, 8:22am
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

Well, I bought the gear needed for thos pressure guage last night, and tried it this morning. First I tried it with a regular basket in, and it sprayed water everywhere. Then I tried it without, really cranked the PF in there, and it shot water across the room. Both times from the PF gasket area, not the guage connection.

What could it be? My PF gasket is not too old. Is the guage faulty?
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
Posts: 1,930
Location: Rapid City, SD
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1
Grinder: Mazzer Robur
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: misc
Posted Thu Feb 9, 2006, 8:39am
Subject: Re: $10 portafilter brew pressure gauge
 

poison Said:

Well, I bought the gear needed for thos pressure guage last night, and tried it this morning. First I tried it with a regular basket in, and it sprayed water everywhere. Then I tried it without, really cranked the PF in there, and it shot water across the room. Both times from the PF gasket area, not the guage connection.

What could it be? My PF gasket is not too old. Is the guage faulty?

Posted February 9, 2006 link

I've never tried this on a Silvia. Do you ever backflush? If your machine does not spray water with the blind filter in place, it should not spray with a gauge, which blocks the flow just as completely. Your gauge could be faulty, but I don't see how this would impact on water spraying from around the gasket.

I've used this method on two machines (one is a different model Rancilio) using the PF without any basket in place, and never had leakage around the group head gasket. You will definitely get leakage between the PF and the gauge if you fail to wrap the PF and gauge threads with Teflon tape.
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