Admittedly, we’ve lately been going a little crazy for transparent portafilters. But like their makers, we’re obsessed.
Here, Amsterdam-based Tije, the maker of the latest known transparent portafilter, takes us through the first part of his production process. Inspired by Stephen Sweeney’s portafilter, Tije’s method is arduous, especially since no known acrylic-based transparent portafilters have proven to withstand repeated use in commercial applications.
Frans Goddijn, the man behind the camera documenting Tije’s work for his Kostverlorenvaart blog, with permission gives us step-by-step photos of this labor of love:
The double spout Rocket portafilter.
The double spout is removed
Turning the loctite-sealed handle to remove
Fitting the tool to cut out the bottom
Fitting the portafilter into the lathe
The cutting commences. Lathe, baby, lathe.
Tije working the lathe
The hole is cut
Sharpening the tool used to adjust the ring size
Filing down the sharp edge of the bottomless portafilter
More smoothing of the portafilter’s sharp edge
A dremel with sharp discs cutting out the portafilter basket
The bottomless basket
Filing the edge of the bottomless basket
Finishing the edges of the basket
Cutting out a slice of acrylic
Extracting the acrylic
Cutting a thread through the center
At this point, the acrylic is transparent from top to bottom, but still cloudy on the sides and too big for the basket
A long bolt inserted and fastened through the thread
Cutting the diameter to size
Polishing to maximize transparency
Part 1 complete
Nick Brown is the editor of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine.