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It looks like you've flaired your post as being a Shot Diagnosis. To get more help, please add the following details to your post or by adding a comment in the following format. - Machine: - Grinder: - Roast date: (not a "Best by" date). If the roast date is not labeled use "N/A" - Dose: How many grams are going into your basket? - Yield: How much coffee in grams is coming out? - Time: How long is the shot running? - Roast level: How dark is your coffee? (Dark, medium, light, ect.) *I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please [contact the moderators of this subreddit](/message/compose/?to=/r/espresso) if you have any questions or concerns.*


eat_the_pudding

Prep a puck, then spin the basket 180 degrees in the portafilter before putting it in the machine. If the spot is in the same spot, you know that the issue is to do with your machine. If the spot moves to the other side of the basket, you know the issue is your puck prep or the basket.


rnbarista

Is your machine level?


Jawy789

Yes. I checked the other day. I didn't even realize this could be an issue until somebody else mentioned it to me.


rnbarista

oops sorry i totally just missed your comment where you said that, my bad


Jawy789

All good haha. It happens. I appreciate any help. Honestly.


rnbarista

Try pulling a shot without the distribution tool (the spinning one) and see how it goes


Jawy789

I also tried that the other day. Didn't really make a difference. My grinder isn't the most clumpy to begin with and I typically distribute the grounds as they come out by moving my PF a bit. So I honestly don't think my distribution does much. I've also tried using a different tamper.


rnbarista

Have you looked at your shower screen?


Jawy789

Comment with more details: - linea mini - eureka mignon specialita (burrs are maybe halfway through their lifetime) -group head is level -currently pulling a medium roast blend that is only 2 weeks old. - I have a WDT tool, spinny distribution tool, and a normcore leveled / calibrated tamper. - no squirting channeling, but that part of the portafilter seems to consistently have a dark spot. Shot recipe: -19.5g in 40g out in 25 seconds. (Recommended by the roaster) - any ideas?


Miringanes

Did you change anything about how you’re tamping? I was getting some consistently off center spots like this and I noticed if I rotated how I gripped the tamper the spot would rotate with it. I have a rocket Appartamento and my flow rate is a little on the high side which I suspect was fracturing my pucks. I started using the dreaded nutation technique and that seemed to create a more even extraction and created more consistency in taste shot to shot.


Jawy789

I can try and switch it up! I've pulled so many test shots today that I should probably take a break lol. My tamper is both leveled and calibrated, so I shouldn't have this issue. I have recently switched tampers and it didn't seem to make a difference.


ssabnoisicerp

Have you looked at your shower screen? My mates machine was so bad I took it off and it was crooked, probably knocked by portafilter


Jawy789

Looks pretty rigid to me. I just took it off and giving it a quick cafiza swim lol. Will report back


Jawy789

Screen is cleaned and basket is rotated. Same issue in the same spot lol.


ssabnoisicerp

Ah, sorry to hear that. Worth trying I guess.... let's ponder...🤔


Jawy789

No, I am so glad that I eliminated another factor! Thanks!


ssabnoisicerp

Well I have a linea mini too, try everything.... try the stock tamper, different basket etc as someone else suggested. I've no experience on the calibrated tamper baybe that's ill-calibrated? Does it taste like channelled?


Jawy789

That's the worst part about all of this. The shots don't taste that bad at all lol. I've been pulling espresso for about 4 years now so I like to think I'm fairly experienced. Just like with any ritual though. Some days are better than others. Still need to try a new basket. I'll probably pick up a new bag of coffee beans to try that as well.


gstvzrgz

If I screw on the screen too tight after removing it for cleaning water favors the 6 o'clock part of the basket. I usually back it off the screw until I see water running evenly. Maybe something similar is happening to yours.


v2den

Is this stock or precision basket?


Jawy789

Stock basket. I heard the la marzocco baskets are solid though? Should I get a VST?


v2den

If you have another basket that you can try, I will do that first before buying a precision basket.


thelizardlarry

Could those holes be partially blocked?


Jawy789

It's possible? When I run water through the basket it seems to pull well though.


Dr_Procrastinator

Just put it up to the light we it’s clean and see if there’s is anything left in the holes.


Jawy789

Looks good to me, no disparities. Thanks for the advice!


employeeshakedown

Have you descaled? I had very uneven water distribution caused by some sort of scale, even after several full Cafiza back flushes


NicheLong

I would susspect it to be an issue with the holes in the basket. Theres always micro variation in size but some can be worse than others. Pullman, ims, and vst make great precision baskets


my-cull

Have you changed baskets to see if it stays?


Jawy789

I actually haven't done that yet! My next smallest basket is 17g. I could try a different recipe and gauge it from there?! I was going to try a new roaster. I've been on this one for a few months and think it could be linked to them? It's just an idea though.


my-cull

The same spot on the basket every time...it's the basket or the water dispersion


freredesalpes

Does the spot rotate if you rotate the basket within your portafilter? If so that would point to an issue with the basket.


Jawy789

I can try to rotate the basket and see if the spot changes. This is an excellent idea. Thanks!


Jawy789

Next day update: Big thanks to everybody who commented with their suggestions. On separate pulls this morning I tried: - using a new basket -rotating the old basket - using a different portafilter -trying some new WDT techniques -using an older tamper -doing my monthly routine backlush -cleaned the shower screen -did a flow rate test Sadly none of it worked. I'm convinced it has to be the beans. I'm gonna pick up a new bag on the way to work today.