For coffee enthusiasts, preparing a brew can be as important as what beans are being used. Gizmag has covered lots of coffee makers over the years, but how the beans are ground also makes a difference. The Handground coffee grinder promises a consistent and precision grind for a better flavor.
According to Handground the idea to create a new coffee grinder came out of what the company called its "Crowdsourced Coffee Experiment." The project was an attempt to apply the Japanese concept of Kaizen, or continuous incremental improvement, to the coffee routine.
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After being made aware of the importance of a good coffee grinder, the company tested a variety of options, but ultimately felt that they all fell short of being ideal. As a result, Handground decided to create its own.
Handground continued with its crowdsourcing approach, taking direction from the coffee community for the design of its grinder and even its company name. The result is a 221 x 147 mm (8.7 x 5.8-in) glass and stainless steel prototype, which the company hopes to take to production pending a successful crowdfunding campaign.
The grinder has a sleek and curved design that tapers in the middle. The upper glass compartment has space for around 100 g (3.5 oz) of coffee beans and has a lockable top to stop any beans from flying out while they are being ground. A borosilicate glass detachable bottom compartment, meanwhile, provides a wide base for stability and collects the ground coffee, whilst also reportedly preventing static and sticky grounds.
The star of the show is arguably the grinding mechanism itself though. A handle mounted to the side of the top compartment drives a triple-mounted grinding axle that runs down through the center of the top compartment. The axle drives a 38 mm (1.5-in) ceramic burr mill to grind the beans. This is said to be far superior than a blade mechanism and to produce a very consistent level of coarseness.
Users can select from 20 different levels of coarseness that are spaced at 125 micron intervals. A dotted wheel located at the join of the two compartments and said to be modeled on a precision camera lens is used to set the level of coarseness. In order to help determine what level of coarseness is required, Handground is offering a fridge magnet that shows water and coffee ratios and brewing instructions with the grinder.
Backers can pledge to support the Handground Kickstarter campaign. At the time of writing, a pledge of US$69 will get you a grinder, assuming all goes to plan with production and roll-out.
The video below is the Kickstarter pitch video for the Handground coffee grinder.