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Topic: Grinder for Vac Pot (15 msgs / 357 lines)
1) From: Phil Palmintere
Since getting a vacuum pot from SM about 6 months ago, I've really come to
appreciate the coffee it makes.  I make a pot almost every day.
So... since I'm now a Vac Pot kind of guy, the obvious next question is what
would a good grinder for dedicated vac pot use?
Any thoughts?
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2) From: Michael Irrera
Rather than dial down the worm drive on my Macap (and then have to dial the espresso back in), I use a Zass box mill for my vac pots, which I find perfectly serviceable -- about 80 turns and I've got what I need for my 5 (Japanese) cups.  It also works well when camping (press pot there, though).  
-AdkMike
On Sep 8, 2010, at 12:53 PM, Phil Palmintere wrote:
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3) From: Jim Couch
I get the feeling from the reading I have done. (and if I am wrong I am sure
I will be corrected :-)) that if you are not talking The Expresso then
practically anything that can get your grind fine enough is usable even a
whirly blade or a Mortar and Pestle. I use a Cuisinart Burr grinder for my
vac pot and my French Press.
On Wed, Sep 8, 2010 at 11:53 AM, Phil Palmintere
wrote:
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-- 
"Idiots are so much fun! Thats why every village either has one or wants
one!"
G. House MD.
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4) From: Michael Irrera
Jim,
That's not been my experience with the vac pot.  Certainly when using the paper filter contraption, it's more forgiving, and you may be able to get away with "practically anything".  But most vac pot users that I've been exposed to eventually convert to a glass rod filter, which can easily be clogged with fines, so a consistent, coarser-than-espresso grind is necessary (no plurimodal distribution desired here).  
Or, you can sift the grounds, but that seems a bit like work to me.
-AdkMike
On Sep 8, 2010, at 1:22 PM, Jim Couch wrote:
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5) From: Ira
At 10:22 AM 9/8/2010, you wrote:
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I think if you look more carefully you'll find that the only time 
you'll ever see whirly blades talked about in a positive fashion is 
by people who've never directly compared one with a proper grinder.
A whirly blade and fresh beans are orders of magnitude better than 
Maxwell House and they're $11 if you shop carefully. I think that's 
the end of the long list if positive attributes of a whirly blade.
Ira
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6) From: John Borella
I use a Bunn G3 that I picked up after a local coffeeshop closed. Modified 
the grind selector so that it is stepless & it does a very nice job! Not 
your most kitchen friendly brew grinder but I have an understanding wife.
John B.

7) From: raymanowen
"...the obvious next question is
what would a good grinder
for dedicated vac pot use?        Any thoughts?"
First let's sort things out a little. In the question lies a critical
misunderstanding:
I can hook you up with an adequate grinder by my standards.
   - If your  standards have size and weight constraints, no dice
   we're done.
   - If you want to dedicate the machine to a single application, we're
   done.
My question is: For what other answers are your questions rhetorical?
Why the assumption that a good [machine] can do only one thing well? Do you
have a Town Car, highway car, another for carrying the driver only, one for
carrying children, another for not carrying children?
How ridiculous do you want?
My wife was helping a friend of hers start a new business. Julia has clients
in the Colorado region and was considering an H1 for the store. "The only
thing is, I don't know where I'd be able to park it."
"Anywhere you want, Julia- "
Cheers, Mabuhay -RayO, aka Opa!
-- 
Maintain old ways; expect new results - enjoy the Insanity...
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8) From: Doug Hoople
Hi Phil,
A good grinder is essential to getting the best results from your vacuum
brewer.
Also, you'll want to be able to experiment with grind to get your best
flavor. A grinder that, at a minimum, produces consistent coarser grinds
gives you your best shot at being able to experiment across a full range of
grind. That's actually not as easy as it sounds, as a good coarse grind is
an elusive thing.
I've found the best flavor coming from medium-coarse settings on your
grinder. That runs counter to the general recommendation that you go a bit
finer.
That said, coarser grinds, counterintuitively enough, create problems with
drawdowns that you can fix by, get this, going finer. Especially with an
"espresso grinder," which is optimized for finer settings.
I recommend the Baratza Vario. Not only does it perform extremely well in
producing consistent grinds at all levels, it yields a great tasting cup of
coffee.
Thanks.
Doug
On Thu, Sep 9, 2010 at 4:53 AM, Phil Palmintere
wrote:
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9) From: Yakster
I can confirm that my upgrade to a Vario has made a great improvement in the
taste and draw-down of my coffee, made in the vac pot, Chemex, or CCD.  I
went with the Vario to solve the rest of my coffee problems, since I have a
nice hand-grinder that's capable for espresso, but not convenient for other
methods.  Since the upgrade, however, the Vario has been quite nice to use
for both espresso and other coffee prep methods.  I was amazed at the
difference in appearance between the fresh ground and spent grounds with my
old grinder (since gone down South to my dad since his grinder's timer died)
and the Vario,  I should have taken before and after photos before I shipped
the grinder home with him.
Keep in mind that the Vario is not the only good grinder out there for
coffee, just the one that I chose to cover both coffee and espresso.  I was
looking forward to the release of the Virtuoso Preciso--a virtuoso grinder
with a micro-adjustment mechanism bolted onto it--but it got pushed back to
September and I decided that I wanted to upgrade before then (and not be one
of the first customers to try out the new grinder).  I knew that I was
suffering with a poor grinder for coffee, but delayed upgrading due to
financial reasons saving up for a grinder upgrade this year after buying the
espresso machine last year.  It's been a long wait.  I've even tried a few
times grinding coffee in the morning at home into a one cup canning jar to
take to work to brew in the AP (AeroPress) or CCD (Clever Coffee Dripper).
The jury is still out, but I think I get a better cup this way then grinding
the coffee here at work with a whirly blade freshly before use.  It's also
nice not to have to worry about running the grinder at work while someone
may try and be on the phone or wonder what I'm up to.
Tom sells both the Maestro Plus and the Virtuoso which should both be
capable of grinding for vac pot, but the step size between the grinds makes
it more challenging to dial in espresso using these grinders.
-Chris
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10) From: g paris
Phil:
it really depends on how you grind now; you seem to be happy with what you
results
so far. How/what are you using today to grind and how would you rate your
grind?
let's say we have a scale from 1 to 10, ten being the finest grind and 1
being the coarse,
where would oyu rate/put your grind.
thanks ginny
On Wed, Sep 8, 2010 at 9:53 AM, Phil Palmintere
wrote:
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11) From: Phil Palmintere
Ginny,
I currently am using a low-end Cuisinart DBM-8 burr grinder for the vac pot.
On this grinder, I grind at about 6 on the scale.  I don't have the
experience with higher end grinders to really be able to intelligently
compare the output -- but one feature that is nice is it is easy to
disassemble to clean (I disassemble it after each use to brush out all
remaining coffee grinds & blow with compressed air) so I don't get
yesterday's stale coffee grinds mixed in with today's fresh grinds.
On a side note, this morning I have Kenya Nyeri Peaberri Kieni, roasted just
to just before the start of 2nd crack on Saturday with a Gene Café.  This=
 is
a great cup of coffee!
--phil
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12) From: Jim Couch
You are using the same grinder I have so I will ask you. Bits of thread on
the chamber are starting to come off so that it has to be turned in tighter
and finer. Haven't yet been able to find a replacement chamber (but now that
I have a model number maybe) have you had any problem like this?
Jim
On Mon, Sep 13, 2010 at 11:03 AM, Phil Palmintere 

13) From: g paris
Phil:
here again it is where you want to spend your money. are you always going to
use a vac pot? would your try cafecrema
or press pot?
if you answer yes to those questions I would say a Mazzer Mini is a
wonderful grinder.
if you are going to stick with your vac pot and you are happy with your
grind, why change until
your grinder dies??
but if you are like most coffee crazed folks around here upgrade, upgrade,
upgrade.
believe me I did it myself after I used the gift from hell Christmas of 2002
I received a Fresh Roast, that started
my adventure into coffee hell!!!
Love it,
am going to roast Tom's #12 Espresso Lab in a few minutes.
ginnyhttp://www.homeroasters.org/php/news.phpOn Mon, Sep 13, 2010 at 9:03 AM, Phil Palmintere
wrote:
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is
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14) From: Phil Palmintere
I don't have this problem -- yet.  Knock on wood.  =
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15) From: raymanowen
"I don't have this problem -- yet."
"Bits of thread on the chamber are starting to come off so that it has to be
turned in tighter
and finer. Haven't yet been able to find a replacement chamber"
In the final stages of the grinder's life, a stone may become part of your
grinding tool set.
Cheers, Mabuhay -RayO, aka Opa!
-- 
Persist in old ways; expect new results - early onset dementia...
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