Lo-tek coffee vacuum siphon brewer

Lo-tek coffee vacuum siphon brewer

Inspired by John Park’s Florence Siphon Brewer article in MAKE, Volume 17, Boris Legradic of Switzerland made this “cruder” version, mostly out of scrounged parts. In email, he says: “…it adds a certain je ne sais quoi with the potential for burning your flat down.”

Bare-bones Vacuum Coffee

12 thoughts on “Lo-tek coffee vacuum siphon brewer

  1. Bob Darlington says:

    It is really bad practice to use lab ware as kitchen ware, and it’s just plain stupid to use it in the kitchen if it was ever used in a lab.

    1. Boris Legradic says:

      Bob, I know you mean well, but trust me when I say I know what I am doing. I know what has been in that glassware, and it’s nothing I’ll regret putting in my morning coffee!

  2. John Park says:

    Boris, I love the aesthetic of it! Much more MacGuyver than mine!

    Bob, I know what you mean, I’ve heard it from many people. You’ve got to be REALLY careful that you are starting with brand new glassware, and I also see that point that you don’t want people becoming careless about ingesting things from labware.

    1. Bob Darlington says:

      As a young chemistry major, I knew a few people that would use beakers for beverages -at least until the death of one of our colleagues. Multiple organ transplants, chelation therapy, and prayer did not help heavy metal poisoning from lead and mercury compounds. NEVER use stuff from out of lab, even a nutrition lab!

  3. vivi says:

    What’s the advantage of this method over the standard gravity method ? I assumed the vacuum would be used to force the liquid through the coffee and filter, but it looks like it’s only used to suck coffee from the puddle inside the filter …

    Also, he mentions that glassware has been banned from his lab because it’s too dangerous (how ?). I wonder what they’re using instead.

    1. Boris Legradic says:

      Hey vivi,

      in answer to your questions:

      We are now using stainless steel in the lab – glassware was considered too dangerous because it might break. Don’t worry, I don’t get it either, but that’s safety officers for you. Maybe it’s because we are physicists, and only chemists can handle glass safely?

      Vacuum siphons have the advantage that the coffee is brewed at near-perfect temperature, just below boiling. But mainly I like to do it that way because it’s cool ;)

Comments are closed.

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!

Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at garstipsandtools.com.

View more articles by Gareth Branwyn


Maker Faire Bay Area 2023 - Mare Island, CA

Escape to an island of imagination + innovation as Maker Faire Bay Area returns for its 15th iteration!

Buy Tickets today! SAVE 15% and lock-in your preferred date(s).