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I've been talking with Joel Finklestein of Qualia Coffee about which grinder is best for me, and he pointed me to this blog entry:

"Choosing the Best Baratza Grinder for You (Revised)" on baratza.com

I, for one, am going to listen to what Joel said in his chat and buy a good grinder. I'm *sick* of going out for coffee each morning only to have a lousy cup of burnt Starbucks served in a *paper cup*, so I'm going to subscribe to Qualia's mail-order program. (I'll add that there are absolutely no discounts or kick-backs for me; I just want to help support a quality business - I took the initiative and wrote Joel; not the other way around.)

Fino Pour-Over Kettle

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Related threads on Coffee Makers and High-Volume Coffee Makers (Joel, if you run across this, I'd be curious to read your opinions about these two, as you came on board after they were written.)

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Throwing this out to the experts, as I truly have no idea:  What is the quality of the grind on manual grinders?  Several advertise that they have burr grinders, and are adjustable.  They tend to be cheaper than the $200+ electric grinders.  They have that old-timey, nostalgic aesthetic, if you are into that.

So what are the drawbacks, other than manual work?  Is it marketing, and they're actually not as good?  Inconsistent grind compared to the quality electrics?

For comparative purposes, the type of manual grinder I'm asking about would be similar to the ones from this company, not the grinders that look like traditional pepper mills.

 

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I have a Hario manual burr grinder and really like it.  It takes all of 15-20 seconds to grind enough for a single press pot or Aeropress serving (about 20 grams usually).  Even grinding a full hopper only takes a minute or two, and I've got an attachment for a small power screwdriver to make that go faster.  It's a little fussy to dial in the grind size by trial and error (you're moving a set screw up and down in very small, unmarked increments), but it seems very consistent once you're there.  I put a lock washer on it and don't futz with that setting.  If you are going back and forth between espresso and course grind all of the time it would be really annoying.

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18 hours ago, TedE said:

I have a Hario manual burr grinder and really like it.  It takes all of 15-20 seconds to grind enough for a single press pot or Aeropress serving (about 20 grams usually).  Even grinding a full hopper only takes a minute or two, and I've got an attachment for a small power screwdriver to make that go faster.  It's a little fussy to dial in the grind size by trial and error (you're moving a set screw up and down in very small, unmarked increments), but it seems very consistent once you're there.  I put a lock washer on it and don't futz with that setting.  If you are going back and forth between espresso and course grind all of the time it would be really annoying.

Thanks, that's helpful.  I don't have a need for any setting beyond coarse for the french press.

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