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New Barista Training and the E-Doser

PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2010 5:08 pm
by Greg H
Yo C-Feed folks,

Any of you trying to train new baristas, or old ones with really bad habits, on how to be consistent dosers with the Mazzer E-Doser?

I'm talking folks that have never checked the weight of their dose or ever made changes to grind settings before.

Part of me feels like it is a fools errand and the old manual doser was far easier to take a crew of novices to consistent dosing.

Some of the issue is that I'm pretty new to the electronic doser since I was an Anfim user up to a month ago.

Anyone want to share how they're compensating for changes in grind setting when it comes to maintaining consistent dose weight?

Here's what I've been doing: if I make the grind more fine the dose decreases so then I bump up the timer a few tenths of a second to maintain my desired dose, extraction time, volume, and flow rate. Conversely, coarsen it and reduce the timer.

Is this the approach you all are taking?

Does anyone have a general ratio they found to be effective. i.e. one notch on the collar equals .3 tenths of a second adjustment or something like that?

Lastly, is this device really cutting down on waste?

Re: New Barista Training and the E-Doser

PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 8:56 am
by afnylander
Hi Greg,

When we are training a barista on an e- model grinder, we find it is much easier to get consistent dosing. The beauty of the grinder is that you can grind only as much as you need for each shot, so while with a doser grinder leveling is required, you can dose only exactly what you'll need with the doserless, and do it more consistently and with less waste.

We adjust one variable at a time on an e- grinder - first grind, then dose. Change the grind until it tastes right. Once the grind adjustment becomes too different than normal, then adjust the dose, which will allow you to change the grind back to the normal range. This way you are constantly striking a balance between grind and dose without making huge changes every time something needs to change. Because generally, a grind change of half a notch won't drastically effect the dose. We find this works best when trying to minimize waste while maintaining high quality espresso. This is the opposite of the Anfim, where adjustments are made to dose rather than to grind.

Re: New Barista Training and the E-Doser

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 4:54 am
by jesseraub
After recent training with some great espresso people, I'm of the camp that the e-doser is a helpful tool for busy settings, but should not replace basic espresso dosing training.

If someone can learn how to dose evenly and repeatedly with a manual doser, then they have a much better skill-set that they can apply to the handy e-doser.

Also good thing to think about — the e-doser is a timer. You're not getting an exact dose with every grind. You're getting an approximation of an exact dose. A simple change in humidity will REALLY throw you off with an e-doser, so being able to monitor your dose and shots with a full knowledge of dosing is really important.

I've also found that it's fairly easy to start updosing with an e-doser, too, if you don't monitor it enough.

When dialing in espresso, this is my methodology — adjust grind, and then weigh dose and adjust from there. Generally, I've found that a short, finer grind adjustment, complete with the lower dose that follows, will get you a shot that runs just about the same time. So if you start with a 20second, 1.75oz, 20g espresso, moving it finer will give you closer to a 20second, 1.75oz, 18-19g espresso.

Adjusting the dose with the grind is antithetical to the scientific method. You don't want to play with too many variables at the same time.

And like manual dosing, it'll only cut down on waste if baristas are trained properly to do so.

Re: New Barista Training and the E-Doser

PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 6:23 am
by nick
I continue to be a big fan of the Mazzer+Delta-timer combo (manual doser) that Espresso Parts is doing. You get the precision of the timer, the dosing control (both the good and the bad) of the doser, and activation using the normal OEM switch. Also, it doesn't have a finger-guard extruder screen to clump the grounds.

FYI, I asked T.Z. why E.P. hasn't offered a Delta timer mod kit. Problem is, Mazzer has changed the wiring configuration a number of times on their grinders, making it tough to put together reliable instructions. Sometimes, the black wire is positive. Sometimes, it's negative. :?

Re: New Barista Training and the E-Doser

PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 12:47 pm
by Elaine Levia
After realizing that very few of the customers I train have the same equipment that we do, we built a really simple timer attached to an extension cord, so that timed dosing is an option on any grinder. It's worked out very nicely... but I still can't decide if I should give all baristas very rigorous training in consistency (which is excellent, but for a short training session can often be frustrating) or just eliminate a variable for them altogether (as long as the understanding of consistency is there).

Ah, run-on sentences. Does anyone train with different types of grinders available?
Obviously, my dream training lab has a Whole Foods-style buffet of espresso machines, from steam piston to semi automatic, pressure-profiled, manual push button monsters.

Re: New Barista Training and the E-Doser

PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:20 am
by theotherone
Speaking of E's, I just purchased a new Major E, and am having some clumping issues, not terrible, but still happening. I have seen some folks break off the lower part of the extruder wire on a Robur, but the wire grid is different on the Major E. Since it's slower, it has a larger grid space on the right side, presumably because it comes out slower on that side. Has anyone figured out any tricksy tips for the Major E?