I like the look of the Baratza Vario, and the grinds I have enjoyed from it seemed to be great. Now these were fine grinds for espresso though, not coarse grinds for press or metal filter brewing. Let me start off by saying I do not own one of these machines (never say never, right?) but I do have a bit of envy for those who do. Now, I have grinders for espresso so even though I appreciate the Vario, I am not envious of it for that application.
My envy stems from the new metal burrs from Ditting that owners of the Vario can purchase from Baratza and install in place of the ceramic burrs that come standard. now these flat burrs can create coarse grinds up to a point, and are a marvel to behold. Being created for the Vario by Mahlkonig is a plus too for me since that company can make a burr set. If only I had a flat burr grinder like the Vario with those snazzy coarse grinding Ditting burrs I thought.
Then it hit me - I might already have something like that sitting around in my coffee tool chest! I am not sure if the burrs are identical, but Mahlkonig and Ditting are essentially the same company now, and I do have a set of metal Mahlkonig burrs sitting in my K30 grinder. They are a little bit larger than the ones that fit the Baratza Vario but are metal and maybe can grind coarse. Time to find out!
I opened up the K30 and gave that burr one full turn coarser and put the lid back on. It takes removing only one screw and about a minute of my time - so it's very easy to do and undo as well. So this machine is capable of grinding OK for coarse metal filter too - I made a cup using a pour over cone and a Swiss Gold filter - the photo shows what was left in the glass from 16g of grounds (four second grinding time for anyone keeping score at home).
Now full disclosure time - in my haste I did not clean or purge the grinder chute so I know some stay espresso fines made it into the cup - the top half of the grind pile is cleaner than the bottom (first out) half. I expect cup number to to be even more consistent and will be a hair less coarse as well.