Posted Sun Jun 8, 2014, 5:43pm Subject: should i find a new boiler or get this one fixed?
its an old feama due that I recently got as a gift from my neighbor who found it at a yard sale. looks to me most of the parts just need a really good cleaning, but this crack in one of the heat exchangers has me worried. my first thought was to have a pro sweat a whole new end cap on, but im wondering if its even safe to do that. should I just scrap it and use the other parts for a custom machine one day?
skydragondave Senior Member Joined: 18 Feb 2013 Posts: 167 Location: Ontario, Canada Expertise: Professional
Espresso: Commercial Only Grinder: Commercial Only Roaster: Has Garanti HG5
Posted Sun Jun 8, 2014, 10:00pm Subject: Re: should i find a new boiler or get this one fixed?
The fact that these cracks aren't covered with calcium/scale buildup suggest to me that this damage occured due to the machine being subjected to freezing temperatures with water still present in the heat exchangers during storage, and expansion of the freezing water caused this damage. I would be surprised if the heat exchanger tube inside the boiler was not ruptured. It's not impossible to repair a boiler damaged in this way, but a Faema Due is not exactly a front-of-house presentable machine, though it is quite capable of good cupping quality. You would not see a return on your investment with this machine.
calblacksmith Moderator Joined: 25 Nov 2007 Posts: 7,734 Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A. Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32 Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major Vac Pot: 40s era Silex Drip: Msl. Com. brewers Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Mon Jun 9, 2014, 5:51am Subject: Re: should i find a new boiler or get this one fixed?
Freeze damage is quite common in places that get cold enough to freeze and the machine is in unheated storage. As the machine came to you free, the cost to repair likely will be OK for you if you consider what it would cost to buy another machine of equal abilities.
Only you can decide if the investment is worth it. It would not be unsafe with a repaired HX system, not at all so if that is your main concern then you are OK.
There may be hidden damage inside the boiler though so I would remove the heater and look inside to see if you can find anything that looks off or bad.
In real life, my name is Wayne P. Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!
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Posted Mon Jun 9, 2014, 1:01pm Subject: Re: should i find a new boiler or get this one fixed?
make sense! ok so I live in salt lake UT, any recommendations on who I should have do the repair? perhaps I could get it done for cheaper at a pro boiler shop rather than a espresso machine repair shop. maybe I have that backwards. I know I don't want to have a low grade fab shop do it, they may not have any real experience with sweating sensitive high pressure parts.
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