In this post, I would like to review the TIMEMORE SLIM PLUS hand grinder. I use this everyday and it is one that I can highly recommend.
If you are on the look out for a high quality grinder which doesn’t cost a fortune, I think this grinder will be a very good option. Let me share with you why I chose it, and the benefits I feel from using it.
Unsure that you actually need a new / better grinder? This post may help you out. I had the exact same question as you, and the post covers which grinders I was considering and the benefits of upgrading your grinder.
I’ve had the TIMEMORE SLIM PLUS for about half a year now. The 3 key points I like about it are;
- Build quality
- Grind Speed
- Great value for money
Build Quality and Basic Specs
The grinder comes in a pretty clean and nice box. Wouldn’t say is apple quality, but it a decent box that you would expect for a premium grade grinder.
The body of the grinder is milled out of a single piece of aluminum, and it feels and looks great. The surface of the body has this diamond shaped patterns cut on them, which gives it a premium look and makes it very easy to grip.
The body weighs 350g with the handle part detached, and 435g with the handle. It has a significant heft to it. A small point that I actually quite like is its weight without the handle. This is the state that you would put your coffee beans in. The simple fact that it is quite a easy number (350g) to remember makes my like a little bit easier when I forget to tear the scale before loading the beans.
The handle part also includes a lid for the hopper. By the way, the lid is also made of aluminum. The part that you hold onto when grinding is made of good quality wood. It attaches to the bar by a magnet. I was somewhat worried that this wooden part might pop off while grinding, but it has never been an issue. These magnets are very strong.
When you look at the grinder from the top, you see the hopper. Its machined out of a block of aluminum so everything is one piece. This gives it the sturdiness it needs to stabilize the rotation shaft while grinding. The stabilizer bars which hold the shaft are quite deep in the hopper, so loading the beans in is quite smooth. The body is slim so that does make it slightly difficult. I usually use a spoon to load my coffee beans in, its not a problem once you get use to it a little. (Also theres a little trick I use to make loading beans easier. Please jump to this post if you are interested)
When we take off the grinds catch, we get access to the burrs. The grind size adjustment mechanism is the standard dial to tighten the burr. The labels indicating which way to turn for coarser/finer is a nice touch.
The adjustment parts are very well made as well. They are fully metal (probably stainless steel). The left part has 12 grooves for the adjustment. The right part has these ball-like parts which lock on to the grooves. These balls are actually spring loaded and make the adjustment very stable and satisfying to turn. TIMEMORE has obviously thought through the details.
Now we will take a look at the burrs. The burrs in the SLIM plus are milled out of stainless steel. TIMEMORE calls this burr design the E&B (Espresso&Brew) burrs. There actually are two models for the SLIM (at least, what it offered in Japan), the SLIM PLUS (this one) and the SLIMS. The SLIMS uses a different set of burrs. You can see that the burrs have very clean cut sharp edges and they are clearly well machined.
The grinds catch attaches to the rest of the grinder with a screw on thread. It feels a little bit fragile so it’s probably best to rotate it in the reverse direction once to align the threads. When you screw the grinds catch on, it produces a metal on metal sound. I personally like it, but I can imagine some people might not.
The grinder can be disassembled for maintenance. The shaft looks like this. The spring that holds the burrs and adjusts the grind size is very strong. There are washers between the spring and the bearings. For details about how to clean up this grinder, this post should help.
There are 2 ball bearings which hold the shaft in place. These are very smooth, and if you hold the handle and give the body a spin, they will spin for a very long time.
The official capacity of the hopper is 20g according to TIMEMORE’s website.
With 10g of medium roasted beans, it looks like this.
With the full capacity 20g, it looks like this. The lid closes no problem with this much beans and you may be able to fit a little bit more in, but it does look like about 20g is the capacity.
As a bonus, TIMEMORE includes a carrying bag and a brush. The brush is plastic and doesn’t necessarily feel too premium but it gets the job done.
The carrying bag has 2 pockets which let you store the body and the handle of the grinder separately, so as to avoid scratches.
The thing that surprised me the most when I first used the SLIM PLUS was its grind speed. It is ridiculously fast.
For pour-over coffee, I set the grind adjustment to 17 clicks. With this setting, I can grind 10g of beans in 19.07secs. As a reference, with the HARIO Ceramic Slim grinder, which I used before this grinder, it took 63.37secs for a similar grind size setting (8clicks). The SLIM PLUS grinds at over 3 times the speed. It was so fast that I first thought that I made a mistake in the amount of beans I put in. I did a in depth comparison of the SLIM PLUS and the Ceramic Slim.
The slim body diameter and the diamond pattern on the surface make it vary easy to grab. This also adds to the smooth grinding experience.
The burrs clearly play a key role in the grinding experience. If you look at it closely they have quite unique teeth. If you look at the picture, you can see that these burrs have teeth that are cut horizontally at the top of the burr. From the burrs that I’ve seen, this seems to be a unique design for the E&B burrs. Maybe they act to catch on the beans better when feeding them in to the burrs.
Great value for money
In Japan, you can purchase the SLIM PLUS for about 120 USD (13200 yen). If you consider that other premium grade hand grinders easily cost over 300 USD, the value you get out of the SLIM PLUS is just great. It has everything you would expect in a premium grinder like a fully metal construction, extremely fast metallic burrs, bearings for stabilization. The build quality is very nice as well and the grinder feels as though its something that is far more expensive than it actually is.
It you are looking for the best value for money, TIMEMORE’s C2 grinder at around 65 USD provide some shocking value. But chose the SLIM PLUS over the C2 for its fully metal construction and better burrs. I feel that the SLIM PLUS is a very great balance of cost to performance.
Maybe you will be interested in this comparison between the SLIM PLUS grinder and HARIO’s Ceramic Slim entry level grinder.
Hope you got something valuable out of this post.