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Topic: grinder dilema, please help (8 msgs / 148 lines)
1) From: Richard Ferguson
I was lucky enough to receive a Gaggia Coffee espresso machine for Christmas
and am totally excited to try my hand at pulling my own shots.  Up to this
point I have been using a french press or pour over for my daily needs with a
Baratza Maestro grinder.  Everything I have read and heard is that my grinder
isn't up to the challenge of producing a good espresso.  So far I have been
exploring the Rocky and the Gaggia MDF.  My concern is that I don't have
enough counter space for two grinders and I don't want to lose my ability for
my press pots.  Will either of these still perform in the press pot range? 
Also, does anyone have experience with the Gaggia MDF?  A lot of posts
reference Rockys but I don't hear much about the MDF.  Any insight would help.
 Thanks
richard

2) From: Barry Luterman
The reason for more posts on the Rocky is that it is the more popular and
,at least in my opinion, the better grinder. The Rocky is an entry level
machine into espresso making. Any grinder which can be used for espresso
will be well up to the task of grinding for press pot or any other method
for that matter.
On Dec 27, 2007 3:35 PM, Richard Ferguson  wrote:
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3) From: Bryan Wray
Now... I have worked with only the rocky (do not own one, just have worked with one, and have not used an MDF, so take this advice however you'd like...)
In my opinion, the rocky is one of the best multipurpose grinders on the market.  If you are going to be switching back and forth a lot (few times a week) then a rocky will fit you fine.  Remember, the grinder is the most important part, so buy as much as you can afford in this area.  Yeah, it's $120 more, but it won't leave you wanting...  Read some of the reviews over on CG and HB about the MDF... most of them seem to be in the "It's good *but*" range...
HTH
-Bry
 
Bryan Wray
NaDean's Coffee Place/
Dino's Coffee Lounge
Kalamazoo, MI
"It is my hope that people realize that coffee is more than just a caffeine delivery service, it can be a culinary art"- Chris Owens.
       
---------------------------------
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4) From: John Crippen
Richard,
I had been using a Solis/Baratza Maestro for my non-espresso brewing.  I
bought a Silvia a few months ago and definitely needed a better grinder (I
under extracted every pull because the grind was not anywhere near fine
enough).  I just received my Rocky today.  The adjustment ring on it is very
easy to use (and has more definite settings, so you can always go back to
the exact spot you had it before).  I have not brewed anything except
espresso with it yet, but I am sure that it would be great for all types of
grinds, given how great the range of grinds is.  Good luck making the
upgrade!
Saludos,
John

5) From: Richard Ferguson
John,
Thanks for your reply, its seems we are in the same boat =)
I usually use my Baratza in the 20 - 30 tick range, can you comment if the
Rocky will produce a grind in that range too?  Also, have you seen a
noticeable improvement in your shots since using the Rocky?  Thanks
richard
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6) From: John Crippen
Richard,
I would be glad to make a grind comparison between the two for you.  20-30
from which end of the range?
Here's what happened yesterday with Day One of Rocky.  I followed the Rocky
directions on how to pick the first setting, I ground 16 grams of Idido
Misty Valley.  The grind was incredibly fluffy and fine.  I tamped it down
and pulled a shot.  I always extract for 28 seconds and measure the success
of the pull based on the volume in the glass.  I've been shooting for 60 ml
in 28 seconds.  With the Maesto, I would also get closer to 100 mls in 28
seconds.  With the first pull of the Rocky-ground IMV, almost nothing came
out!  I mean I had 5 or 10 mls, nothing more.  This made me very happy,
because it meant I finally had room to play with.  I spent the next few
hours "dialing in," adjusting back and forth, trying to find the right
grind.  I eventually found a setting that gave me 60 ml at 28 secs.
Success!  And yes, it tastes great!  I won't comment on the taste
improvement yet because I fear the emotional excitement of finally being
able to have the proper extraction time biased my senses.  I'm selling my
Maestro to a friend next week, but before I do I will run some side-by-side
comparisons for taste purposes, just to confirm.  If we're really in the
same boat, there's no turning back at this point.  I am uber-happy to
finally have a grinder that gives me such a great range of fineness.
If you haven't, please read the thread I started yesterday about "2 Rocky
Questions."  There you will fine my only 2 concerns about the Rocky, neither
of which are anywhere near significant enough to make me regret the
purchase.
-John
On Dec 28, 2007 8:40 AM, Richard Ferguson  wrote:
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7) From: rich ferguson
John,
You already have me just about sold but a side by side comparison would
be nice.  Not sure what your Maestro looks like but mine has 40 total
ticks.  It has 0 labeled as the finest grind and 40 the coarsest.  I
mainly grind in the 20-30 range so that's the mid point and a little
coarser.  If the Rocky can provide a grind that is comparable to the
Maestro at 3/4 of its coarsest setting, that would sell me completely.  
Thanks for your help
richard
On Fri, 2007-12-28 at 09:59 -0500, John Crippen wrote:
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8) From: John Crippen
Richard,
I ran the comparison this morning.  No problem.  I did not reach the far end
of the Rocky steps to make it match the grind from the Maestro where you
indicated.  So I would be comfortable using the Rocky for both methods of
brewing.
Good luck with the decision,
John
On Dec 28, 2007 3:43 PM, rich ferguson  wrote:
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