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Rejigger it!

The Green Dragon

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Apr 25, 2012, 7:04pm Top

Being an unemployed college grad type person, I tend towards the "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without" mindset. Unfortunately my Bodum brand French Press recently had a bit of an accident. Somehow the mesh bit on the plunger separated from the framework. This means that, when I press down on the plunger, the mesh bit doesn't quite follow along like it should. Anybody have an idea how I could fix this? Generally I'd lean toward gluing the thing, but seeing as it'll be exposed to stuff I plan on ingesting... I'm a bit hesitant.

Additionally, consider this the place to discuss ways to fix stuff that breaks around the house. The way I figure, unless its got a computer in it (less and less seems to these days) its a whole lot less expensive to fix it yourself. Assuming you know how.

Apr 25, 2012, 7:32pm Top

Even if there is a computer involved, fixing is cheaper. I cracked the screen of my netbook (the bag it was in fell off the bed)--fortunately, it was just the screen that cracked, and the machine itself functioned fine. So I found a replacement screen for it on eBay for about 40 bucks and my electrical engineer husband took out the old one and put the new one in. We're huge fans of fixing whenever possible.

Speaking of eBay--you might look for a new plunger piece for your press there, if you can't find a satisfactory way to repair it. Better than replacing the whole thing.

Apr 26, 2012, 2:01am Top

I just took a good look at mine, and the mesh doesn't seem to be attached to the assembly by anything other than a central metal axis-piece and the concavity of the mesh itself as it associates itself to the metal above. If mine had separated from the framework, I think I'd take the assembly apart, and the try to reshape the mesh so that it once again follows closely the contours of the metal structure on top of it.

Good luck!

Apr 26, 2012, 1:55pm Top

In mine the mesh is held between two frames, and the whole assembly screws into a post on which the lid slides, and which ends in a bobble. The mesh looks like ordinary steel mosquito netting, which I'd go looking for at the local hardware shop. I think I'd buy a few cents' worth of mosquito netting at the hardware shop, use the old mesh as a template to cut a circle from that, then reassemble with the new mesh. Maybe boil it for a while before using.

Apr 26, 2012, 3:25pm Top

On my one-cup French press there is a tiny little screw holding the mesh and frames to the post. Luckily I saw it when it fell out or the whole thing would have been useless.

Apr 26, 2012, 8:19pm Top

My dad took a look at it and thinks he can fix it with careful application of a vice and a mallet. I'll report back when it comes back from the shop. :D

Apr 27, 2012, 1:14am Top

Maybe adding a washer (or two) would help if the hole in the middle is enlarged

Apr 27, 2012, 7:16am Top

My french press is way over 30 years old and still works like a charm. Highly recommended that you do what you can to fix it, or have your father's tools work their magic! Good luck.

Apr 27, 2012, 8:31am Top

Is there anything that can't be fixed by judicious whacks with a mallet? French presses, political systems, cracked eggs, dysfunctional relationships...

Apr 27, 2012, 8:46am Top

"he can fix it with careful application of a vice and a mallet"

Ditto what MrA said.

Apr 27, 2012, 10:21am Top

I spoke too soon! I emptied the grounds from my French press this morning and the little nut thingie went with the grounds. Told daughter she could get me a new one for Mothers' Day.

Apr 27, 2012, 12:27pm Top


Apr 27, 2012, 9:56pm Top

I have to keep reminding myself what a french press is. Us Aussies call them 'plungers', which makes at least Americans giggle (or gag).

I'm wondering if I can use my little one for tea (all my teapots - 5 of them - are too big for a single person).

Apr 28, 2012, 5:29am Top

Hmm - I've always called them "cafetieres" ... (there should probably be at least one grave or acute accent in that word, but I haven't had my second mug of tea (made in a Bodum glass teapot) yet!).

Apr 28, 2012, 8:31am Top

Bodum has tea presses

Edited: Apr 30, 2012, 12:53pm Top

I have a cup with a drop in basket and a top that is perfect for brewing a single cup of tea (and it's pretty!). I'm one for choosing the option that has less dirty dishes.

This is one available on Amazon. Mine has an Oriental pattern.


Edited: Apr 30, 2012, 1:08pm Top

I have an older Brookstone one cup coffee maker at home that I use on weekends. It was given to me by one of the doctors here, who wasn't using it:

It's simple, makes good coffee, and I love it.

Apr 30, 2012, 1:44pm Top

I use a Bodium press and ran across my Grandfather's old wooden, hand crank grinder. It grinds the coffee very coarsely, which means I never had to worry about coffee sludge. The electric whir grinders are horrible for french presses (or plungers).

Apr 30, 2012, 3:24pm Top

Good luck with the repairs--Dads come in handy for such troubles.

I am about ready to retire my coffee press. I have never found the right grind to make a satisfying cup of coffee. And I make a mess getting rid of the grounds.

Over the years, my preference has gone more towards tea or a bottle of brandname/convenience store iced coffee. Either one gives me a drink of consistent strength and flavor. I think the individual cup brewers at our new office have sealed it for me, since the tea doesn't even see a gasp teabag. But I won't be buying one of the $100 machines; I'll just make do with tea, etc. on the weekends or visit my niece, who plans to buy a fancy machine soon.

Mamzel, that's a lovely idea for a cuppa. Tea is getting more attention in this country, so the kitchen shops sometimes have such things in stock. And then there is Amazon, as well.

May 1, 2012, 12:49am Top

Got the plunger back from my dad and looks to be in working order, though I haven't tried it yet.

May 1, 2012, 5:36am Top

It's a trap!

May 1, 2012, 7:52am Top

Dads are great at fixing things.

Why can't my husband be good at that stuff too?? Waah!

May 1, 2012, 11:58am Top

Ah, husbands!

Before I married Monsieur, he and his brother completely rebuilt a farm house into a gorgeous home. Since we moved into our own house he hasn't done a thing! I will need a large inheritance or lotto winning to pay someone to bring the house back to reasonable shape.

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