All posts filed under Coffee

Tiny cheap fluid bed: chaff collector and more testing

Last week we did some new tests with our DIY Tiny fluid bed roaster. There were two things to test. First we wanted to test the Chaff collector that was made by Tije. Secondly we wanted to configure the PID of the TC4/ Arduino to make it accurately execute pre defined roast profiles.

Tije’s chaff collector

During our previous tests the tiny fluid bed roaster blew lots of coffee chaff in Tije’s workplace. This made a lot of mess and we had to fix that. To solve the problem we needed a small but effective chaff collector. We were very happy that Tije made a creative solution for this. He invented a unique part for this purpose that’s smal and effective. It’s also easy to use & clean. To make the part he used a large herb infuser bowl that he sourced at a cook shop.


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Tiny Fluid Bed Roaster update


(movie by Frans Goddijn)

Last week we updated the Arduino software of our air roaster prototype. Tije fixed the new safety switch that I brought along. In case of software failure, you want to switch off the heater and keep the blower active in order to cool the beans and prevent overheating of the blower and heating element. The switch bypasses the relays that are controlled by the Arduino control board. We also tried a new Artisan sketch that supports a “background roast” using the Artisan PID to follow a pre-designed roast profile. Read More

Simple affordable-for-all fluid bed roaster

Tije design and construction of the roaster

Tije de Jong, Frans Goddijn and I are thinking of a small simple affordable-for-all fluid bed home roaster for coffee. The roaster is supposed to roast 200 grams of coffee and work with the Artisan roast software. Furthermore the machine is intended to have PID control and adjustable airflow. This combination of things would make it an ideal home or laboratory machine that will let you precisely execute predefined roast curves, roast different batch sizes and give consistent results. We decided to open source the design of this machine. This enables you to build this roaster yourself, contribute and help to further develop the machine. Read More

Espresso dosing funnel design

Dosing the coffee in the espresso portafilter basket and distributing evenly can be difficult. A small funnel can help to ease this proces. Tije made a beautiful one for me and there are funnels on the market like the IDR dosing tool. I’ve recently learned how to draw in 3D and I thought it was a good exercise to made a first design. The prototype is not final and I haven’t tested it yet. You can however download and print the design yourself. Don’t forget that you will need to print it a bit larger (approx 1.5% for ABS) because filaments tend to shrink after printing. Let me know what you think about it.

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La Marzocco Linea Mini, first shot


Frans Goddijn and I are reviewing the La Marzocco Linea Mini this week (to be published in an upcoming issue of KTC magazine) and here we extract a first espresso, using the double basket included with the machine, the heavy double spout portafilter, the LM tamper that comes with the machine. Also using the Acaia scales and a Compak grinder. Monitoring the group temp which is very stable around 83ºC after we set the extraction temp on 93ºC using a small mechanical wheel on the top left of the machine. The roast profile shown briefly during grinding is made by the free Artisan roast control & logging software supported and developed by Marko Luther.

This post was first published on kostverlorenvaart.nl.

Affordable fluid bed roaster

Tije de Jong, Frans Goddijn and I are thinking of a small simple affordable-for-all fluid bed home roaster for coffee. We use some hard- and software idea’s from the Roastuino project. Today we installed the electronics and tested several configurations. The results are promising. To be continued!

Sudden Coffee – Just add water and stir

sudden coffee instant

By Frans Goddijn & Jan van der Weel. This blog is also on kostverlorenvaart.nl

Travelling can be tough when you are used to excellent coffee. How does one prepare a decent cup on the road if there is no specialty coffee place in sight?

You can load all your equipment in your trunk but this isn’t a very practical solution when you travel by airplane or when you drive out to very remote places, if you want to go backpacking or if you don’t want to have another coffee related argument with your partner.

Now there might be a simple solution. A relatively new company, Sudden Coffee, promises to offer a solution. “Just add water & stir – it’s really that simple”, they say. Read More

‘Kitchen stress’ relieving coffee station

coffee station

I know that this coffee thing has got out of control. It has taken over our house. Our kitchen has become something of a laboratory. This 5 square meter space is crammed with cutlery, cooking equipment, kitchen appliances, dishwasher, washing machine, fridge, deep freeze, a vegetable stall and all of my coffee things: a giant roaster, a huge grinder, a big espresso machine and lots and lots of other coffee related stuff.

I have tried to convince my girlfriend that our kitchen situation was quite normal. This was everybody’s kitchen situation, I could hear myself say. However my words weren’t compelling and after some time I had to admit that she was right. Entering our kitchen gave me bad vibes. It was absolutely no relaxing feng shui environment. It was certainly the worst room in our house. Also, the space was not very practical. All the kitchen counters were filled with stuff. There was no more room left for cooking. That’s why I could regularly find my girlfriend on the kitchen floor, the only ‘open space’ left in the room. While cutting vegetables on the cold floor I ofter heard her mumbling ‘I hate this kitchen’. Read More

How to fix a La Marzocco GS3 pump on the cheap

Recently the pump of my LM GS3 espresso machine broke. It was the second time the machine experienced this problem in a period of one year. The problem was quite substantial. The pump refused to run after pushing the brewing button. This brought me in a depressing situation. I wasn’t able to brew any espresso.

The cause of the problem

What was the cause of this problem? Inspection showed that the vane in the fluid-o-tech pump head didn’t turn smoothly. That made it impossible for the motor to drive the pump head.

pump head rotary pump
Failing pump head la Marzocco GS3

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An Afternoon at the Opera

Roemer Overdiep made a wonderful video of our visit, see it on Vimeo.

[Text by Jan van der Weel and Frans Goddijn]

The Sanremo “Opera” machine development used the input of an international array of baristas like John Gordon (New Zealand), Serif Basaran (Turkey), Sasa Sestic (Australia) and even Torpong Tantraporn from Thailand.

This “dream machine” is new to The Netherlands so Maarten Meijer of Sanremo Netherlands invited us to come and have a closer look. Read More

Think Coffee Out of the Box

If coffee wouldn’t be such a challenge, we all wouldn’t be here.

John Gordon

Coffee has been around for many years but we are still struggling just to learn the basics about it. Consistent coffee roasting, grinding and brewing is quite a task and many aspects of the process are not properly understood and controlled. What we think we know today may be discarded tomorrow. That’s not a bad thing, however and the above remark by John Gordon summarized this very well. The joint discovery and sharing of knowledge brought together a group of fun and open minded baristas. Read More