Our Valued Sponsor
OpinionsConsumer ReviewsGuides and How TosCoffeeGeek ReviewsResourcesForums
Espresso: Espresso Machines
Heat exchange machine temp control
Learn @seattlecoffeegear
Learn all about coffee, watch videos, read how-to articles.
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
 
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered  
Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Heat exchange...  
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
showing page 2 of 6 first page | last page previous page | next page
Author Messages
jammin
Senior Member
jammin
Joined: 25 Nov 2009
Posts: 666
Location: Boise
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Vario-W
Vac Pot: Hario
Drip: manual
Roaster: quest m3
Posted Tue Jun 15, 2010, 12:50pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

wbaguhn Said:

I'm curious - what does yours do other than deliver hot water, albeit at the right temperature and pressure?

All mine does is squirt out hot water or steam

Posted June 15, 2010 link

Does it not allow you to manually control pre-infusion and deliver the water under specific pressure profile via the spring mechanism?  Does that not make it make the "water delivery" much different than other machines?  Does that not all have influence on the process?

 
roast your own
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
wbaguhn
Senior Member
wbaguhn
Joined: 16 Feb 2009
Posts: 980
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Ponte Vecchio Lusso
Grinder: Cunill Tranquilo, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Cory DR
Drip: Vietnamese gadget, AeroPress
Roaster: Behmor
Posted Tue Jun 15, 2010, 1:40pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

My machine does have controls which change how it dispenses hot water, but dispensing hot water is what it does.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
jammin
Senior Member
jammin
Joined: 25 Nov 2009
Posts: 666
Location: Boise
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Vario-W
Vac Pot: Hario
Drip: manual
Roaster: quest m3
Posted Tue Jun 15, 2010, 2:01pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

wbaguhn Said:

My machine does have controls which change how it dispenses hot water, but dispensing hot water is what it does.

Posted June 15, 2010 link

Thanks for clearing that up...

 
roast your own
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
boyscout
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Dec 2009
Posts: 405
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 12:35pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

JasonBrandtLewis Said:

<snip>Each class of machine has its advantages and its disadvantages, and each class has its "dedicated followers."  Largely, but not exclusively, this boils down to what you're comfortable with -- i.e.:   what they already own.  For example, by temperature surfing, you can change/adjust your brewing temperature on an HX machine "on the fly," as it were.  With a DB, you have to reset the thermostat, and wait for it to re-stabilize at the new (higher or lower) setting.<snip>

Posted June 14, 2010 link

Leighton, I owned a good HX machine before purchasing a DB machine.  Each class does have its "dedicated followers" and in the above post you've heard from coffeegeek's most ardent defender of HX machines.  People who own expensive HX machines perhaps have an understandable inclination to defend the older technology and the value of their machines, but I'll bet you can judge for yourself what is the "best advice in this thread" and don't need one of your would-be advisors to decide that for you.

I especially hope that you don't take the advice that "the machine is just a hot water delivery device" too much to heart... it is particularly misleading.  Under such a dismissive description, a Breville Cafe Roma ($200) or Rancilio Silvia ($700) and a La Marzocco GS/3 ($7,000) would be equivalent, a contention that many machine owners would likely dispute.

When I was upgrading last year and paralyzed by indecision, I got advice that all machines above a certain level, in the right hands, can be used to make pretty good coffee.  There's almost certainly great truth in that.  However, it obviously irks a few people here that burbling or awed reports keep appearing from those who have upgraded from an HX to a DB machine (like the Vivaldi or Duetto or GS/3).  These come from people of all experience levels (including many of the most experienced) who are amazed and/or delighted by the improvement in their drinks that they get from their DB machines.  That's a great truth too, and you don't have to look very hard here to find these reports.  I dunno if you can find anyone who has dumped a double-boiler to go back to an HX machine... they would be very rare.

And the reason, Leighton, gets back to your original question:  temperature control.  Temperature is one of the very most critical of the half-dozen or so major factors affecting your cup.  Nobody has said that it's hard to control temperature on an HX machine, but getting consistent, highly-accurate temperature at a known level is undeniably easier on double-boilers.  That's why most well-financed coffee shops (is that an oxymoron?!) these days use double-boilers from La Marzocco and a few other leading manufacturers.  They're more expensive, but they make it easier to produce a consistently-good product with less care and attention, leading to repeat customers, so they're worth the extra cost.

The HX defenders have a small set of criticisms of double-boilers that often get played-out each time this debate sparks again.

With a DB, you have to reset the thermostat, and wait for it to re-stabilize at the new (higher or lower) setting.

Unless you're making very large changes of several degrees or more, a temperature change takes only seconds on a DB.  It would be rare to make larger adjustments unless you were changing coffees altogether, in which case the temperature adjustment is just one of your tasks.  A DB machine's brew water goes up by one degree as fast as its heater can take it there... seconds on home machines.  To go down, brew water is flushed just enough to get cold water refilling the boiler, and then seconds of waiting lets the temp stabilize.  Both tasks take well under a minute on my machine.  I'd time it for you but my machine is down right now.  I'd guess 15-20 seconds going up, 45 seconds coming down, and I'd guess that the Vivaldis and Dalla Cortes would be even faster.  And once the brew heater has stabilized, you know without question you've got exactly the temperature you want.  

It undeniably requires more skill and experience and attention to know that on an HX machine, especially the majority of them not fitted with thermometers (thermometers are available as an after-market add-on for some HXs).  There's also some sly misdirection in this contention, easy because it seems obviously-true on the surface.  However temperature changes take time on an HX machine too, and especially going up in temperature can require more time than on a DB.  The HX machine's typically-massive group resists temperature change - that is its job, after all - and it usually gets heated by conduction, rather than the direct heating of brew water by a heater that occurs in a DB.  So temperature changes, especially going up, also take time on HX machines.  Any experienced HX user would know this, so perhaps Zin1953's "on the fly" was not meant to suggest a significant difference between the two types of machine in this regard.

With a DB, you have to do a warming flush so it's no different from an HX which requires a cooling flush.

Depends on the machine - some DBs don't need a flush - but if required the flush on a DB is a complete fuggedaboudit exercise.  Most DBs are automatics, so a simple tap on a button before turning away to tamp is all that's required for an automatic flush that is typically much faster - about 1/3 to 1/2 as long as a typical HX cooling flush - with no listening, no watching, no counting, no timing, unlike the HX flush.

With a DB, you get stale water in the brew boiler.

This is the silliest argument advanced by HX defenders.  Fresh water enters the DB's brew boiler when pulling shots or flushing.  Home machine boilers are small enough that in typical use they are significantly recharged with fresh water daily, and commercial machines are usually busy enough that they, too, are recharged.  In either case, if the machine was used well below typical loads, some quick flushing would instantly resolve the "problem". AFAIK this claim has not ever been advanced by anyone who could taste "stale water" in the cup, but it nevertheless often appears as a theory during this debate.  Misdirection and reaching for clouds are unfortunately not rare in it.

So I suggest again, with your budget, consider DB machines among your choices.  One of them may be the best machine for you and your coffee habit.

Hope this helps.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
davethebrewguy
Senior Member
davethebrewguy
Joined: 31 Jul 2008
Posts: 1,228
Location: The Brewery
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Fiorenzato Bricoletta,...
Grinder: Compak K-6, Baratza Maestro...
Drip: Saeco Renaissance
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 1:54pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

Congrats Boyscout, you've just posted the biggest pile of BS that I've ever seen on this forum!!

but getting consistent, highly-accurate temperature at a known level is undeniably easier on double-boilers.

Seriously? My house blend seems to work best at 210.5F at the group, as measured with a simple grouphead thermometer that can be installed on almost any E-61 machine. Just lift the lever up and let it run, the temp will rise from it's idle temp (206F @ the group) to about 213 and then start dropping, stop the machine when you get to the desired temp. It takes about 10 seconds and I could stop at a different temperature if I desired. OTOH, I can taste the difference between a shot that was pulled after a 35 minute warm-up and a shot pulled after a 40 minute warm-up. Your display may say that the water temp is ready but if the plumbing and group haven't stabilized, that shot is not going to be pulled at the temp you see on the display.

That's why most well-financed coffee shops (is that an oxymoron?!) these days use double-boilers from La Marzocco and a few other leading manufacturers.  They're more expensive, but they make it easier to produce a consistently-good product with less care and attention, leading to repeat customers

I've had great shots at a number of shops that have HX machines, I'm guessing that you have no idea what's inside many of the common machines, LM builds DBs but a lot of the others are HX machines. OTOH, as you pointed out, DB machines "produce a consistently-good product with less care and attention' and in a commercial establishment that is a good thing. At home, most CGs are willing to put in that care and attention because we enjoy it.

To go down, brew water is flushed just enough to get cold water refilling the boiler, and then seconds of waiting lets the temp stabilize.

An idling HX machine runs hot, you just do exactly the same thing to bring the temp down to where you want it. How is that an advantage for either type of machine?

well under a minute on my machine

Mine too!

The HX machine's typically-massive group resists temperature change - that is its job, after all - and it usually gets heated by conduction, rather than the direct heating of brew water by a heater that occurs in a DB.

Absolutely incorrect. The E-61 group found on most HX machines is heated by the brew water that constantly circulates through it. This design was created to work on HX machines and does exactly what it was intended to do. I don't think that this design would work as well on a DB machine, the temp offset just isn't there so the head will always run cool (requiring a heating flush), but many DB manufacturers insist on using them anyway. So, what was your point again?

However temperature changes take time on an HX machine too, and especially going up in temperature can require more time than on a DB.


Incorrect again, you have it backwards. If you are flushing from "too hot," you use a shorter flush for a higher brew temp.

Most DBs are automatics, so a simple tap on a button before turning away to tamp is all that's required for an automatic flush

You do realize that most HX machines are available in full-auto versions as well, don't you? Now that you mention it, the lack of semi-auto versions of most DBs seems like a negative.

The big one for me is this;

It undeniably requires more skill and experience and attention to know that on an HX machine

I enjoy honing my skills. When I'm perfect, I'll have to consider getting either a DB machine or a new hobby.
In all seriousness, any type of machine has it's pros and cons. You seem to think that all HX owners are closet DB fans but your post sounds like you are still trying to convince yourself that your DB was worth the extra that you spent on it. I can't say that I wouldn't have a DB machine if I had unlimited funding, OTOH, I can't say that I would have one either. My "top 5 dream machine list" includes both DB and HX machines.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
ginalola
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Jul 2009
Posts: 203
Location: USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto II; Pasquini...
Grinder: (2) Baratza Vario
Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 3:25pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

Well, this is my little story:  I played with my Pasquini Livia 90 Automatic for several years; I had never heard of the water dance until I began reading CG a year or so ago.  I did my best, and even though I took ballet lessons for a dozen years, my water dancing was never pretty.  I thought the Baratza Vario would improve my performance, and it did; however, I felt that I needed to change partners....I bought an Alex Duetto II in April from Chris Coffee.  It was the best decision I ever made.

Now there is no mystery 'for me' relative to the temperature of the water.  In all honesty, the very first shot and the very first frothing I did on the Duetto was perfect 'for me', and it continues to be so.  

'For me' a double boiler would be the only machine I would consider now.  My journey began with HX in 1991, and it has happily ended with my Duetto in 2010.

Everyone's story is different, but the happy ending of mine is due to all the wonderful detailed information I read on CG, and I appreciated and respected every word that I read.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
boyscout
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Dec 2009
Posts: 405
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 3:50pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

davethebrewguy Said:

Congrats Boyscout, you've just posted the biggest pile of BS that I've ever seen on this forum!!

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Yup, figgered we'd see you with your jack-boots on again.  A very few guys here just can't be civil on this topic.  He who kicks strongest often has weakest argument.

davethebrewguy Said:

Your display may say that the water temp is ready but if the plumbing and group haven't stabilized, that shot is not going to be pulled at the temp you see on the display.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

If the brew water is at the right temperature, which it very quickly is, "the plumbing and the group" just need a quick warming flush with that water.  Unlike an HX machine, I don't have to wait for these to heat up if they are too cool.

davethebrewguy Said:

I've had great shots at a number of shops that have HX machines

Posted June 16, 2010 link

So have I.  You and your cohort on this subject can't stop hearing (or pretending to hear) me saying, "you can't make good coffee with an HX."  Never, ever, said anything close to that, I know it's not true, I even made good coffee on an HX myself!!

davethebrewguy Said:

I'm guessing that you have no idea what's inside many of the common machines

Posted June 16, 2010 link

You have no idea what I know.  Another attempt at distracting from the meat of the debate?

davethebrewguy Said:

OTOH, as you pointed out, DB machines "produce a consistently-good product with less care and attention' and in a commercial establishment that is a good thing. At home, most CGs are willing to put in that care and attention because we enjoy it.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Again unsupported conjecture.  Many here do seem very interested in the the art, the process, the science, and will devote considerable time to learning about them and practicing them.  Others - maybe more than you believe - just want to be able to easily make great coffee at home, and aren't looking for it to become a major time-consuming hobby.  I'm a bit in both camps, but more in the latter.  When I'm making coffee for ten people while also socializing and table-clearing and desserting - a frequent occurrence here - I do NOT want to be thinking about group temperature and flushing and warming and timing.  Been there, done that.  With the DB, it's a no-brainer (yeah, go ahead, take the cheap shot!)

davethebrewguy Said:

An idling HX machine runs hot, you just do exactly the same thing to bring the temp down to where you want it. How is that an advantage for either type of machine?

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Thanks for re-making my point.  Contrary to what Zin1953 seemed to be contending, there is not a major difference between the two classes of machine when doing typical temperature changes.

davethebrewguy Said:

Absolutely incorrect. The E-61 group found on most HX machines is heated by the brew water that constantly circulates through it. This design was created to work on HX machines and does exactly what it was intended to do. I don't think that this design would work as well on a DB machine, the temp offset just isn't there so the head will always run cool (requiring a heating flush), but many DB manufacturers insist on using them anyway. So, what was your point again?

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Again, you re-make my point.  Just as I said, your group is heated by conduction of temperature (from the water), it's big and heavy, and takes some time to change temperature.  A DB's brew water is directly and quickly brought to temperature by an electric heater, and can be flushed to quickly bring the much-smaller group to temperature.  Not much difference.  My point, again.

davethebrewguy Said:

Incorrect again, you have it backwards. If you are flushing from "too hot," you use a shorter flush for a higher brew temp.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

OK, I'll concede this point because I wasn't clear, but I was clear in my mind.  If your group is too cool to pull at the desired temperature, it takes plenty of time for your group to heat back up, just as it takes time to heat and flush on a DB.  That's what I meant.

davethebrewguy Said:

You do realize that most HX machines are available in full-auto versions as well, don't you?

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Of course.  But are you misdirecting again?  You're not claiming that you do your cooling flush with a pre-set volumetric button and no attention, are you Dave?  If you are, then your kitchen temperature and machine are a WHOLE lot more stable than mine were when I had my HX machine.  I proved with a Scace that my temperature was ALL over the map when I tried to flush just by timing the flush (I didn't have volumetric, but for flushing that's irrelevant.)

davethebrewguy Said:

The big one for me is this; I enjoy honing my skills. When I'm perfect, I'll have to consider getting either a DB machine or a new hobby.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Good one, Dave, I did chuckle.  But you and your buddy seem unable to understand that not everyone here is just like you.

davethebrewguy Said:

You seem to think that all HX owners are closet DB fans but your post sounds like you are still trying to convince yourself that your DB was worth the extra that you spent on it.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Wrong, and wrong again.

There has been NO doubt, thanks, about where a small number of people like you and Zin1953 stand on this issue.  I don't have any problem with people loving their HX machines, why would I care about that?!  It's the Pavlovian charging that occurs after nearly ANY mild suggestion like mine earlier in this thread that, in some circumstances, a DB might be worth considering and might even be a better choice for some people who may not be true geeks like you.  That charging, usually led by Zin1953 and quickly followed by you, seems irrational, impolite, and probably confusing to newcomers.

And absolutely NO part of my effort on this topic is related to convincing myself.  I'm completely thrilled with my DB choice.  I make great coffee with much better consistency than I did with my HX.  No doubt I might one day, with lots of practice and careful attention, have become pretty consistent with the HX but I just didn't want to spend the time and effort to do it.  My choice.  Tolerance of that, and recognition that there may be others like me, would be appreciated.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
boyscout
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Dec 2009
Posts: 405
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 4:07pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

ginalola Said:

'For me' a double boiler would be the only machine I would consider now.  My journey began with HX in 1991, and it has happily ended with my Duetto in 2010.  Everyone's story is different, but the happy ending of mine is due to all the wonderful detailed information I read on CG, and I appreciated and respected every word that I read.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

Thanks for chipping in Judy.  Different strokes for different folks... for a lot of us, the DB is the best choice.  There's plenty of room for both types of machine, and for civilized discussion about their merits, to allow people to make their choices.

Glad to hear that you're so pleased with your choice, I remember the threads when you were on the hunt.  Something will probably come along in the next while that makes us think our machines are crap :-) but we can enjoy for a while!
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
Joel_B
Senior Member
Joel_B
Joined: 9 Oct 2007
Posts: 1,823
Location: Pacific NW
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Astra Mega II
Grinder: Mazzer SJ, Virtuoso
Vac Pot: Yama 5 cup
Drip: nope, french press
Roaster: Behmor, WP, BBQ drum
Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 4:36pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

boyscout Said:

Any experienced HX user would know this, so perhaps Zin1953's "on the fly" was not meant to suggest a significant difference between the two types of machine in this regard.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

boyscout Said:

Thanks for re-making my point.  Contrary to what Zin1953 seemed to be contending, there is not a major difference between the two classes of machine when doing typical temperature changes.

Posted June 16, 2010 link

I think you may not understand what Jason (or myself) are refering to by "on the fly" temp changes.  The brewing temp can be altered "on the fly" 3 ways.  You can lengthen/shorten the cooling flush.  You can lengthen/shorten the rebound time.  You can vary both the cooling flush and the rebound time.  

As I said, this remains as the biggest advantage an HX has over a DB.  It may  not mean much to many but the "on the fly" comes in very handy if you switch beans often (until recently I kept two grinders loaded).  It also lets you play around with a coffee more.  It's nice to be able to see how it does at different temps to dial it in.

boyscout Said:

I do NOT want to be thinking about group temperature and flushing and warming and timing.  Been there, done that.  With the DB, it's a no-brainer (yeah, go ahead, take the cheap shot!)

Posted June 16, 2010 link

A cooling flush won't be for everybody.  For some it becomes an inconvenience and for others it's hardly even thought about (second nature if you will).

I do agree that there's a general ease of use associated with a DB over an HX and it certainly has it's advatages over a HX.  But in that $1500 (give or take) it remains a solid value in my book.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
ginalola
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Jul 2009
Posts: 203
Location: USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto II; Pasquini...
Grinder: (2) Baratza Vario
Posted Wed Jun 16, 2010, 4:37pm
Subject: Re: Heat exchange machine temp control
 

You're correct about that, too, Mark....last night I was researching lever machines!  Then I watched a video on youtube of the gals at Seattle Coffee Gear trying to get a La Pavoni to behave.  I think admiring the lever machine from afar shall be my decision.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
showing page 2 of 6 first page | last page previous page | next page
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Heat exchange...  
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered     Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
Discussions Quick Jump:
Symbols: New Posts= New Posts since your last visit      No New Posts= No New Posts since last visit     Go to most recent post= Newest post
Forum Rules:
No profanity, illegal acts or personal attacks will be tolerated in these discussion boards.
No commercial posting of any nature will be tolerated; only private sales by private individuals, in the "Buy and Sell" forum.
No SEO style postings will be tolerated. SEO related posts will result in immediate ban from CoffeeGeek.
No cross posting allowed - do not post your topic to more than one forum, nor repost a topic to the same forum.
Who Can Read The Forum? Anyone can read posts in these discussion boards.
Who Can Post New Topics? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post new topics.
Who Can Post Replies? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post replies.
Can Photos be posted? Anyone can post photos in their new topics or replies.
Who can change or delete posts? Any CoffeeGeek member can edit their own posts. Only moderators can delete posts.
Probationary Period: If you are a new signup for CoffeeGeek, you cannot promote, endorse, criticise or otherwise post an unsolicited endorsement for any company, product or service in your first five postings.
Rocket R58 Double Boiler
Rocket Espresso R58 Double Boiler -  Everything you need for the perfect shot!
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
Home | Opinions | Consumer Reviews | Guides & How Tos | CoffeeGeek Reviews | Resources | Forums | Contact Us
CoffeeGeek.com, CoffeeGeek, and Coffee Geek, along with all associated content & images are copyright ©2000-2014 by Mark Prince, all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Content, code, and images may not be reused without permission. Usage of this website signifies agreement with our Terms and Conditions. (0.639721870422)
Privacy Policy | Copyright Info | Terms and Conditions | CoffeeGeek Advertisers | RSS | Find us on Google+