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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > EXPOBAR Brewtus...  
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gshokar
Senior Member
gshokar
Joined: 19 Feb 2012
Posts: 14
Location: Vancouver, BC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus IV-V
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: Chemex
Posted Tue Jun 5, 2012, 5:28pm
Subject: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

I've had my brewtus 4 - Vibe machine for a few months now and I am not happy with it yet.   I am giving it some time to try to work out the bugs but I can't produce consistent shots with any sort of crema.  I am using a Bartaza Vario - W as my grinder, at setting 1:(S-Z).  This is a pretty fine grind setting for those of you who don't use Baratza Vario's.  

The problem I am having is the vibe pump almost always chokes if I were to tamp to hard or grind too fine.  The Pressure bar raises up to 10-11 then the vibe pump almost sounds like it shuts off and the pressure drops to 4 then it slowly goes up again and then stops once the pressure gets up too high.  Now the pressure drops as soon as the coffee begins to come out of the portafilter which would explain the pressure drop but I am wondering if this is normal.
If I were to get a regular shot out of the Brewtus within the 25-28 second window the pressure gets up to 4 bar max.  
I am not getting much crema this way at all.

I purchased beans from a cafe that they just used on their La Morcozzo machine and the crema it produced versus my machine was night and day.  Do I have false expectations of what a prosumer machine can do?

Will moving to a rotary pump do anything for me?

Thanks for the help,

Gary
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flatsix
Senior Member


Joined: 4 Feb 2012
Posts: 21
Location: Washington, DC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus IV-R
Grinder: Ceado E37, OE LIDO #036
Vac Pot: Espro french press
Posted Tue Jun 5, 2012, 5:39pm
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

Well I have the IV-R, not the -V, but there's nothing about the vibratory version that would prevent you from getting thick, rich crema. How old are the beans you have? If they're under 2 weeks post-roast, that's not it.
Also, your tamp pressure will always be dwarfed by the pressure exerted by the machine, so that's not the problem. It's got to be either the grind or a defect in the machine. Have you spoken to the vendor you bought it from?
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gshokar
Senior Member
gshokar
Joined: 19 Feb 2012
Posts: 14
Location: Vancouver, BC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus IV-V
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: Chemex
Posted Tue Jun 5, 2012, 11:31pm
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

Yes, beans are always fresh, definately less than 2 weeks and sealed in an airtight cannister.  When i back flush i am able to keep the pressure consistently up, so not certain if the pump is the problem.  

Very confused right now.  i tried calling the vendor, but he is very difficult to get a hold of...
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diggi
Senior Member
diggi
Joined: 28 Nov 2011
Posts: 383
Location: Halifax, NS
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Spaz vivaldi S1 V2
Grinder: B Vario, OE LIDO
Drip: Chemex, Espro Press,...
Roaster: Poppery I
Posted Wed Jun 6, 2012, 11:52am
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

gshokar Said:

The problem I am having is the vibe pump almost always chokes if I were to tamp to hard or grind too fine.  The Pressure bar raises up to 10-11 then the vibe pump almost sounds like it shuts off and the pressure drops to 4 then it slowly goes up again and then stops once the pressure gets up too high.  Now the pressure drops as soon as the coffee begins to come out of the portafilter which would explain the pressure drop but I am wondering if this is normal.

Posted June 5, 2012 link

The problem you are having is not really clear to me. Is it possible that you are grinding too fine.  You are choking the machine.  I'm not really clear on what you are describing.  What happens if you coarsen the grind?
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wsikes
Senior Member
wsikes
Joined: 3 Oct 2011
Posts: 396
Location: West Virginia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic
Grinder: Promac MD-64 AT
Drip: Bunn
Roaster: Behmor
Posted Wed Jun 6, 2012, 12:10pm
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

I agree with diggi... it really sounds like you might be grinding too fine.

 
Bill
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gshokar
Senior Member
gshokar
Joined: 19 Feb 2012
Posts: 14
Location: Vancouver, BC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus IV-V
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: Chemex
Posted Wed Jun 6, 2012, 4:15pm
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

If I were to coarsen the grind the pressure doesn't get up past 3-4 BAR and the shot is extracted within 18-20 seconds.  So I am pretty certain the grind settings are correct.

To clarify the problem, as I pull my shot, the pressure guage increases from 1 bar up to 10-11 bar and then as the coffee starts to pour out the pressure drops back down to 5 bar and it sounds like the pump turns off, then starts up again when the pressure decreases.  So the pressure will continuously move from 4 up to 10 then repeat, rather than staying at the required 8-10 bar pressure sweet spot.

Funny enough just as I sent my message yesterday I did some further experiments and ensured the handle of my portafilter was precisely in the middle position and the pressure came out at 8-9 bar throughout the shot with much more crema!  

Not sure if I solved it yet, but I will keep you posted.
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AndyPanda
Senior Member
AndyPanda
Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 769
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Olympia Cremina, Various...
Grinder: Mazzer Major, Fiorenzato,...
Vac Pot: vintage Corey
Drip: AeroPress
Roaster: BreadMachine/HeatGun
Posted Wed Jun 6, 2012, 7:11pm
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

gshokar Said:

To clarify the problem, as I pull my shot, the pressure guage increases from 1 bar up to 10-11 bar and then as the coffee starts to pour out the pressure drops back down to 5 bar and it sounds like the pump turns off, then starts up again when the pressure decreases.

Posted June 6, 2012 link

This description sounds like an electrical or mechanical problem with the pump ... it is normal for the vibe pump to get quiet as it loads up pressure ... but it is not normal for the pressure to drop and to sound like the pump turns off ... if the pressure were dropping because the coffee started to flow, this usually makes the pump louder as it is no longer locked up and is vibrating harder

gshokar Said:

Funny enough just as I sent my message yesterday I did some further experiments and ensured the handle of my portafilter was precisely in the middle position and the pressure came out at 8-9 bar throughout the shot with much more crema!  

Posted June 6, 2012 link

But then this part seems to indicate that your pump is working fine.

Pretty hard to diagnose this way .. but it's possible you have an intermittent problem with your pump that only shows up when you lock it up.
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heenaldo
Senior Member
heenaldo
Joined: 25 Jun 2012
Posts: 5
Location: SINGAPORE
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: GS3
Grinder: Vario
Posted Mon Jun 25, 2012, 1:08am
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

Hi!

i'm still owning my bretus iv leva -V version after my upgrade to GS3.

i used to face the same problem as you. i tried out some of the following solutions which you may wanna consider:

1) use a blind PF to check if the pressure drops during backflushing. If yes, then most like the OPV needs to be tweaked or change.
2) try adjust the grind setting to slightly coarser. if the grind setting is too fine, you may chock the brew head (which explains why espresso comes out after 11-13 sec) and may cause channelling through the side of the PF. You can also check and see the puck in the PF if there's any channelling holes caused by over pressure.
3) overpacking is also a potential problem to channeling depending on your grind settings
4) the tamper you are using may also be a factor. are you tamping with the right size tamper? expobar E61 PF is usually 58mm in size. i tried using 57mm tamper and it caused me serious channeling.

if the brew pressure is 8-9 bar... i think the extracted espresso should be nice and honey like with a good crema. how did it taste for yours?
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heenaldo
Senior Member
heenaldo
Joined: 25 Jun 2012
Posts: 5
Location: SINGAPORE
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: GS3
Grinder: Vario
Posted Wed Jun 27, 2012, 1:13am
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

Oh ya... one more possibility will be that the rubber gasket (rubber around the brewhead showerscreen) might have been torn causing leakage. Try check that out too.
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gshokar
Senior Member
gshokar
Joined: 19 Feb 2012
Posts: 14
Location: Vancouver, BC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Expobar Brewtus IV-V
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: Chemex
Posted Wed Jun 27, 2012, 10:46pm
Subject: Re: EXPOBAR Brewtus IV- V problems
 

See what I am referring to regarding my problem:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGQbMOmVsQA

Anyone have an idea
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