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Rancilio Silvia help
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Discussions > Espresso > Q and A > Rancilio Silvia...  
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irishblood
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Aug 2012
Posts: 6
Location: DC
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Tue Aug 14, 2012, 12:01pm
Subject: Rancilio Silvia help
 

Hi I'm new to the forum as far as posting, so forgive me if there is a FAQ I didn't see.  
I've had a Silvia for a few years and lately have not had luck getting good shots.  I was hoping someone might help me narrow down a probable problem/cause.  I have a 07 Silvia and a doserless Rocky.  
I recently added a PID since the temp seemed to be way high.  I was hoping this might solve the problem but I still am not getting much crema and the shots are consistently fast regardless of how hard I tamp or how fresh the coffee is.  On the grinder, one click away from the burrs making contact and tamping as hard as I can, i am not able to choke the machine or slow it down for that matter. the best results I have are by dosing a little and tamping, then dosing more and tamping a second time.
I've replaced the burrs once and the rubber gasket on the Silvia already.  does anyone have any advice as to a starting point to narrow down a problem?
thanks a ton
john
please let me know if i left out any crucial information
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,734
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 Tue Aug 14, 2012, 12:12pm
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

John
Welcome!
You should be able to get some great shots from your gear. The PID on my Sylvia is set for 221 which includes the offset between the location of the sensor and the brew water. The brewing should be about 201.
Rocky is able to do the job for sure but I can see some possible frustration if you need to grind between the steps.

It sure sounds like your problem is stale coffee. We define coffee to be stale two weeks from the day it was roasted, the most common trouble (besides lousy taste!) is fast, thin shots with no crema.

How old is your coffee and who roasted it? If it came from a supermarket or a Starbucks store, it is hopelessly stale before you got out of bed the morning you bought it.

 
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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irishblood
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Aug 2012
Posts: 6
Location: DC
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Tue Aug 14, 2012, 4:04pm
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

Thanks....that could be it but the last bag I used was stump town hairbender with a roast date of 8/8 or 8/5...can't remember, I can get pretty fresh stuff from stumptown, Intelligentsia, counter culture and PT's, so I'm thinking it's something else? I tried to calibrate the pressure of my machine using a blank basket and timing/measuring the overflow water based on an article I found and if that method is accurate enough I should be close to 9 bar.
Not ever using anything but a rocky, I'm not sure if my grind is right or something. The only other theory I have is that I'm way over tamping and it's channelling around the puck.
Are there any methods anyone has to further eliminate the problem in this equation...something I might be missing?
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JGG
Senior Member
JGG
Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 1,377
Location: Kentucky, US
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: PID Silvia; PID Alexia
Grinder: Mazzer SJ
Roaster: Hottop D w/HTC+TC4C
Posted Tue Aug 14, 2012, 7:29pm
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

If your shots are too fast with fresh coffee then the grind is not fine enough.  

I understand that you think the burrs are going to touch if you go any finer.  But I suspect that is not actually the case if your present setting is too coarse to choke the machine.

Jim

Disclaimer:  if you were right and I was wrong about the burrs touching, I will feel badly, but not buy you a new grinder :-)
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irishblood
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Aug 2012
Posts: 6
Location: DC
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Tue Aug 14, 2012, 8:08pm
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

Haha, thanks Jim. If I click one more click finer I hear a skipping whine which I assume is the burrs touching, I could be wrong. Maybe something is out of line in the grinder,I may see if I can get a local shop to grind some coffee for me to run home and try in my machine to see what happens
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NobbyR
Senior Member
NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
Posts: 2,041
Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
Vac Pot: N/A
Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
Roaster: N/A
Posted Wed Aug 15, 2012, 12:30am
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

Have you done the teflon tape mod on your Rocky?

 
***
"This drink of the Satan is so delicious that it would be a shame to leave it to the infidels." (Pope Clement VIII on coffee, when he was urged to ban the beverage)
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irishblood
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Aug 2012
Posts: 6
Location: DC
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Wed Aug 15, 2012, 4:39am
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

I did, but I was just thinking I need to revisit that and make sure it's done right
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 3,067
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Wed Aug 15, 2012, 7:19am
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

I understand your desire to make the Rocky work, but have you considered just getting a better grinder?  Perhaps a refurb Preciso...if you want to save money?

Back to your original question...

You should be able to choke your Silvia easily with the Rocky.  I would also suggest trying to recalibrate it.  While you're at it, clean it out really good...  

There's a nice pictorial "how-to" in disassembly and reassembly out there on the CG "guides & how tos" pages...

http://coffeegeek.com/guides/cleanrocky

also, article 11 under "how-to" on www.espressomyespresso.com is a non-pictorial version

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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irishblood
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Aug 2012
Posts: 6
Location: DC
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Wed Aug 15, 2012, 10:12am
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

I am now feeling more like it's a grinder issue. Thanks for the link. I will give it a thorough cleaning and maybe reapplying the Teflon tape and see if there's any improvement. I was checking Craigslist for used grinders yesterday, thinking of a step up in grinders now
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 3,067
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Wed Aug 15, 2012, 11:51am
Subject: Re: Rancilio Silvia help
 

if you decide on Baratza, don't forget to check their website for refurbished ones.  Another place to look is in the B, S, T (buy, sell, trade) forum here at CG.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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