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Porlexes have a pretty good reputation here as a somewhat better yet nothing to replace a Lido or something which is close to perfect. There's this model the tall and then a shorter/smaller model but they're pretty much identical. There's not as much info on these if you want to mod/repair them but their build quality seems to be good enough to not have to worry about it until you get into coffee. Also metal construction > Plastic hario
If you’re looking to get a hand grinder I highly recommend going for a porlex or rhinowares instead. They’re not that much more expensive than a hario and imo the porlex the best grinder for the Budget price range by far, followed by the rhinowares.
I’ve tried my uncle’s hario mill and the axle wobbles like crazy when I try to brew a filter, giving huge pieces. Even brand new ones I tried at the store feel flimsy and wobble badly, and they’re not exactly cheap here. Many specialty cafes/websites carry the porlex so try your local ones.
Looks like this: [link]
There’s a smaller and a larger model, but unless you’re brewing for multiple people the small should suffice. I know this doesn’t exactly answer your question regarding the differences between the different hario models but if you’re getting a grinder I think this would be relevant.
It was the Porlex JP 30. But as you said, it's likely not designed for espressos. Ugh... I just want a serviceable espresso grinder for this machine. I don't need it to be amazing or cost an arm and a leg.
If you want a pretty good hand grinder I use the Porlex JP-30
Been using it for a year and just replaced the burrs. I love the thing if you're down for a little manual labor prior to your cup.
Looks a bit like a porlex. I wouldn't use it in a machine without a pressurized portafilter. If you feel comfortable with it, get the Gaggia classic but keep the pressurized Porta filter for now. Save up, buy a better grinder and start upgrading the Gaggia. Good luck!
I'd suggest a Porlex hand grinder if you're looking to use the AeroPress while camping, and still want fresh ground coffee. It fits inside the AeroPress, so packs super well.
How big a difference would a gooseneck kettle make over a normal kettle?
I currently use a Porlex hand grinder (like this). I'm spotting inconsistencies in the grind at times, but seeing as I usually brew with an Aeropress is it that big a deal?
You're in a good place, actually. Too course is WAY easier than too fine. You could try an old hammer trick. Also, some Hand Grinders are very cheap and make acceptable grind for pour-over. I use this one.
At the end of the day, you may have to break-down and get a Burr Grinder. Expensive but my main concern with grocery grinders is that they're never cleaned so you're picking up moldy rotten coffee bean oils from 10 years of use.
>What are some options for me that are <20-30 dollars?
Nothing electric at all, and almost nothing manual, but a Porlex is a reasonably decent hand grinder for the price, or you might try this to save a few bucks (it appears to be a rebranded Porlex, but we have no firsthand experience with it).
I have a porlex grinder:
My grind is a bit like table salt. I prefer to use a metal screen filter:
Gives more of the body I like from espresso. OH! And there are a TON of ways to make coffee in an AeroPress. Go ahead and research and experiment to find what you like (you can get pretty close to espresso, but I've never got it nearly as creamy and bold as true espresso).
Still my go to setup as well.
Porlex Hand Grinder:
Goose Neck Kettle (allows you to do pour over as well):
If you’re okay with a little bit of work, a hand grinder is a great place to start. I started with a porlex, and I know plenty of people who like the Hario Skerton.
lol, we already know..... never will get good coffee out of it, however this is what I use for my portable coffee kit, [link]
Even a cheap lightweight hand-cranked grinder like a Hario or Porlex would be a decent upgrade over a blade grinder. Since it only has to last 6 months, you might as well get a knock-off
This video is a quick & dirty breakdown of the popular Porlex hand grinder vs a cheaper knockoff version. I go over the exterior and interior showcasing the main differences you get when spending $50 on a grinder as opposed to $10.
I've been using a Porlex grinder every day for about three years now. I love it and it still looks brand new.
Grab a Porlex
This is what I use in my travel kit. Pretty straight forward. Works great for me.
Start here. A burr grinder, like this one, is a good idea.
Porlex JP-30 Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder
and a good french press
I have a two-group Astoria Rapallo at home, but I can't drag that beast into work! I also use an AeroPress, paired with a Porlex grinder that fits right in the hollow handle of the Aero:
The grinder will grind fine enough to choke the Aero, and dialed back just a bit will produce really strong coffee.
But as I'm sure you know, espresso is a process- I don't know of anything handheld that can push 200degree water at 9 atmospheres of pressure through 18 grams of powdery-fine coffee, except MAYBE this - and I'm skeptical:
There are a couple of other options CLAIMING to be proper espresso, but again I'd guess that what they really make is strong coffee:
On the other hand, milk and sugar cover a multitude of sins, and "close enough" might be just fine for the sake of convenience in this case. And hey, if all else fails, there's always this approach:
I've been using a Porlex JP-30.
I've been happy with it. It can hit a wide range of grinds too.
Does the Porlex have the same wobble issue that the Hario has?
edit: Probably. Looks like the same burrs, and even the stock grind photos look horribly inconsistent.
That grinder looks like a portlex.
Porlex JP-30 Stainless Steel Coffee Grinder [link]
Ceramic burrs, it's a pretty solid hand grinder if it is.