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PID on a HX?
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > PID on a HX?  
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calblacksmith
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calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,853
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 4:05am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

boar_d_laze Said:

A primary reason to use a PID instead of a p-stat is that it allows the maker to "thermocompensate" the group with boiler water and keep very stable head temp.  Another HX using the same strategy is the new generatiom Elektra T1.

The new Pasquini looks like it has a lot going for it.

In terms of pros/cons for the PID on the G4 in particular, the pros include meantime between failures, tighter deadband, and the ability to relate electronic control over the boiler to other aspects of operation.  There probably aren't any cons.

BDL

Posted October 10, 2013 link

My E61 is not PID and it has no problem with stable GH temp, my personal view is that with the much slower swing in temp that 8 pounds of brass has vs water in the boiler, any supposed stability increase by the use of a PID is in the mind of the user, not in the machine.

A pstat maintains a +/- 2f in the steam boiler that goes from min to max and back again in less than a minute thus, the GH will not see any temp swing that can be easily measured with tools that are available to a user in the home. In a lab, possibly but again the metal moves much slower so it will easily average out the slight change in the boiler.

I will even grant that a PID will cause a HX machine to reach stability a little quicker, but very quickly both systems will be the same anyway. Then too, the temp in the GH is not the same throughout, it is a gradient with the warmest being next to the water channel that heats the GH and in the thickest part of the GH, as you move further away and to a larger surface area exposed to room air, the metal is cooler.

EVERY method of temp regulation has flaws, nothing is perfect but some changes to design have more value to the sales floor than to the function of the machine and my personal opinion after using a HX and a E61 for years, is that the PID on a HX system is one of these. YMMV!

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
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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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,853
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 5:56am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

George, that has not been what I see on my machine. The GH acts like a shock absorber and is not the primary source of temp regulation, even allowing 50 deg, which may or may not be true, the affect on the water by the GH is only a few degs as the contact time is not that long. The water path through the group head is only about 3 inches at most, this gives a moderating effect but is not the primary temp regulation device, that is the design of the HX system and the surface area of the HX to the steam boiler.


The heavy lifting of temp control is in the HX system, the GH WILL affect the water but only by a few degs, perhaps 5 or so. Given that the water in the steam boiler would be at 212 subtract the 5 deg, you are at 207 or so for brew. The top of where you would want to brew.

To use a HX machine like a SBDU, is a poor use of the equipment, kind of like using a Semi truck and trailer to take a date to a dance. Yes it will get you there just the same as a sports car but there is a whole lot of capacity that goes unused.

AS ALWAYS, these statements are from personal use and what I have seen,  YMMV

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
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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alexmaxxwell
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alexmaxxwell
Joined: 11 Oct 2013
Posts: 1
Location: london
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Fri Oct 11, 2013, 6:10am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

really this stuff is good
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doug_s
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Joined: 8 Oct 2010
Posts: 36
Location: earth
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: livia 90 & gaggia classic
Grinder: baratza vario & preciso
Drip: bodum french press
Posted Tue Mar 25, 2014, 7:32am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

a few comments.  first, this machine is awailable w/o pid.  2nd, it's the exact same machine as the new bezzera bz13 (which is also awailable w/or w/o pid).  bezzera makes the pasquini machines.  3rd, its group heat stability (or lack thereof) does not come from the boiler, but it is electronically controlled.  unlike the old livia 90 (which i happen to own), the group on the new models is relatively separated from the boiler - it is connected w/brackets and the water tube; it is not part of the boiler assembly itself.  so, thermal stability should be relatively good w/o requiring much flushing...

schematics:
Click Here (www.bezzera.it)

doug s.
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DavecUK
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Joined: 21 Sep 2005
Posts: 1,449
Location: UK
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Mar 25, 2014, 8:11am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

PID on HX, in terms of making any difference to anything in the cup, about as useful as snow shoes in Arizona.

If two machine schemas are considered PID+SSR or Pressurestat+SSR

Pros vs Pressurestat

  1. Removes a mechanical device from the machine (the pressurestat).
  2. Noisless

Cons vs Pressurstat (assuming the usual Gicar PID

  1. Pressurestats are cheap to replace, PID isn't
  2. Pressurstat response is instant PID isn't, so steaming is worse than with a pressurestat (PID cuts power as the setpoint approaches
  3. Gicar PID unit has PIDness even if you try and set it as a pure on/off controller for good steam response
  4. Other points of failure introduced (transformer to run PID, Thermal Probe)

The latest UK Duetto I reviewed using a PID actually consumed about 80% of the element power when steaming early on, due to PID reducing the power to the element as it was near the set point! I insisted on a special Dual channel PID for the UK Vetrano DB (Verona) which actually has 2 algorithms splitting PID control from brew control and allowing a much narrower PID band operation to improve steaming response.

If it's a straight choice on an HX machine of single channel PID control+SSR, vs a Pressurestat+SSR, I personally would be inclined to go the pressurestat route....especially if the PID machine costs more. You have to have the hot boiler on ALL the time and at steam temp (unlike most Dual boilers), this does not give the most favourable environment for the PID to work in over the long term.
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Dave_E
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Joined: 25 Mar 2014
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Location: Edmonton, Canada
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Espresso: Rocket Cellini
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Tue Mar 25, 2014, 8:32am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

The only real benefit as I see it is that you can see if your initial purge prior to pulling the shot has been enough to relieve any backed up overheated water.  Other than that - nothing.
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gophishin
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Joined: 1 Mar 2013
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ecm technika iv profi
Grinder: baratza vario
Drip: bonavita immersion dripper
Posted Tue Mar 25, 2014, 8:36am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

^^ you sir, have clearly not been to Arizona!  There are two (main) ski areas in Northern AZ and one in southern AZ.  Snowshoeing is a regular winter activity in Flagstaff!  

But I digress, this discussion has been very helpful and educational, as I am also beginning my research for my next machine and am at the moment leaning towards an HX.  Although, I don't see why my future HX would have a PID, I had not considered that the steam would be compromised by the lower temps at the boiler by the PID (if I'm saying that correctly).  My question is, what kind of temp would an PID HX machine be targeting as compared to a PID SBDU or DB considering that job of the boiler is much different being a heat exchanger?

Additionally, it's very interesting that there is limited information on V3 HX Rocket machines (Cellini and Giotto) the seem to indicate they will now have PIDs, why?  http://www.seattlecoffeegear.com/rocket-espresso-cellini-premium-plus-v3

(edit- I just saw there is a similar thread currently running on the Bezzera BZ13 that answers some of these questions, sorry for any redundancy.)
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boar_d_laze
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Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,314
Location: Monrovia, CA
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Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Tue Mar 25, 2014, 8:42am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

Dave_E Said:

The only real benefit as I see it is that you can see if your initial purge prior to pulling the shot has been enough to relieve any backed up overheated water.  Other than that - nothing.

Posted March 25, 2014 link

Well then, "nothing."  Because the ordinary cooling flush sights and sounds -- which are entirely independent of whether the HX's boiler is controlled by a PID or p-stat -- are sufficient to temp first the group, and then the brew water.

As a minor thing, I think the term "backed up" implies something which doesn't happen.  

Rich
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onthego
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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 Tue Mar 25, 2014, 10:34am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

boar_d_laze Said:

A primary reason to use a PID instead of a p-stat is that it allows the maker to "thermocompensate" the group with boiler water and keep very stable head temp.  Another HX using the same strategy is the new generatiom Elektra T1.

The new Pasquini looks like it has a lot going for it.

In terms of pros/cons for the PID on the G4 in particular, the pros include meantime between failures, tighter deadband, and the ability to relate electronic control over the boiler to other aspects of operation.  There probably aren't any cons.

BDL

Posted October 10, 2013 link

The latest version of the Izzo Alex HX machine has also replaced the P-stat with a PID.
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boar_d_laze
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Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,314
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Tue Mar 25, 2014, 10:50am
Subject: Re: PID on a HX?
 

onthego Said:

The latest version of the Izzo Alex HX machine has also replaced the P-stat with a PID.

Posted March 25, 2014 link

Whether we like it or not, PIDs are the wave of the future for HXs.  Good thing or bad?  I'm agnostic.    

Rich
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