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do it yourself espresso maker
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > do it yourself...  
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myrand
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jul 2012
Posts: 17
Location: canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: pavoni europicolla
Grinder: not a good one
Posted Thu Jul 12, 2012, 2:13pm
Subject: do it yourself espresso maker
 

hi folks
i have a cnc milling and a lathe in my garage sitting and doing nothing right now. in fact, its waiting my next freak idea.  that freak idea, its to make a coffee maker from scratch. probably during next winter when i will be stuck inside.
i have 2 concepts and dont know if one or the other have been tried. so far i didnt found any information on google, maybe someone could tell me if it has been done or not.

the first thing i've been thinking aout is a pneumatic piston operated double boiler.
easy for me to make that cylinder and piston.  with a pressure adjustment on the down stroke it should be very easy to control the pressure to be always the same, and steady.
2 boilers, 2 heaters, one for steaming, one for coffee. i could even use that air pressure to pressurize the tank and fill the cylinder.
it would be noisy, not user friendly(actually other than the fact that 2 boilers need to be filled, it should not be that bad)

another thing i was thinking about is something i red about the first espresso makers.
they were using the steam pressure to force the water trough the coffee, obviously it was too hot and was burning the coffee so they changes it a little.
now, what if i would make a tank that can accept 150 psi, fill it with water and heat that thing at the right temperature. once the right temperature achieved, pressurize the boiler to 150psi, run a hose from the bottom of that boiler to the porta filter. . .and put an electric or pneumatic valve on that line to open or close the water flow. . . . . .
150 psi on a 5in column of water should give me around 750 lbs of force. . . . . . . .then the restriction of the piping will do its job and if i am lucky i end up with too much pressure at the end. then its just a matter of adjusting.
there is a certain danger with pressurizing hot water but there are ways to put casings around and make it safe.
what concerns me is the concept.

does anything like that have been done and is known to give poor results and or good results ?
i am leaning toward pneumatic for its simplicity and the fact that this coffee maker will end up in the garage since it will probably be way too big to have it in the house.

any ideas or suggestions are welcome. there is still 5 monts before the winter. thats plenty of time.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,775
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 Thu Jul 12, 2012, 4:19pm
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

At its core, an espresso machine is only a boiler that can supply the proper pressure to the bed of coffee at the proper temp. Your ideas cancertanly be done and are much more complicated than it needs to be to produce coffee.....but that isn't the point is it? :<D

I can see issues with using air pressure that need to be addressed. Air is compressable so you need to account for that fact. When using a water pump, the pressure stops as soon as you cut the power as water is not compressable so with air pressure you continue to apply pressure until it is dissipated. You could pressurize the boiler and use an inline valve for brewing to skirt this issue bit you still need accurate regulation which is easier with water than with air.

It sounds like you will be able to work out the issues.

 
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!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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IMAWriter
Senior Member
IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,876
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, OE Pharos,...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Thu Jul 12, 2012, 8:02pm
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

How about a simple machine that works like an Ararex Caravel?
click here

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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mhborstad
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Feb 2012
Posts: 31
Location: Gatineau
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Thu Jul 12, 2012, 9:00pm
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

#1 is fine, but compressed air is a big hassle where you could use incompressible water instead (see #2)
#2 is every SBDU/dual boiler pump machine currently on the market.

The pressures involved are 100% non-scary if you are reasonable with your design. Look forward to seeing what you come up with!  I wish my tools weren't so far away.
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myrand
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jul 2012
Posts: 17
Location: canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: pavoni europicolla
Grinder: not a good one
Posted Thu Jul 12, 2012, 10:36pm
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

IMAWriter Said:

How about a simple machine that works like an Ararex Caravel?
click here

Posted July 12, 2012 link

simply because i will buy a la pavoni for the house, and i would not want to end up with 2 machines that works the same. and i am buying the la pavoni simply because i want that coffee maker before christmas.. . .its my gift to myself for being a good boy in the past year :)





mhborstad Said:

#1 is fine, but compressed air is a big hassle where you could use incompressible water instead (see #2)
#2 is every SBDU/dual boiler pump machine currently on the market.

The pressures involved are 100% non-scary if you are reasonable with your design. Look forward to seeing what you come up with!  I wish my tools weren't so far away.

Posted July 12, 2012 link

well, here is the little tricks.
i am mechanic, working in a shop where we already have a ton of compressed air. at home, i have a 60 gallon tank ready to do the job,  and that coffee maker will end up. . . . . . . .in the garage. i will also make the possibility to use it in the house as well, an air compressor and a small tank doesn't takes a lot of room. i am lucky, i have lots of that stuff. we have actually a complete bar downstairs that is now transformed into the words first spice bar. this is after transforming that bar into the worlds first canned tomato bar. why not a coffee bar for the summer :)
that being said, imagine for a moment how great would be my life if one day, i could unplug my impact wrench and plug my coffee maker. . . . . . . . .it would be. . . . .original. i usually dont have customers in my shop, simply because i have none, but if they would see it, they would assume right away that the genius fixing their stuff. . . .also like good coffee.

the only thing i am thinking about the option no2 is the food grade compressed air. complicated ! it need filters, food grade lubricant, it would require a dedicated air compressor. maybe i could also find a small diaphragm compressor but i doubt that thing would go high enough in the pressures. i dont want to use a water pump, that would be too simple and i would not have 100% control on everything.
making a pneumatic operated piston type espresso maker, since the air doesn't touch the coffee, a simple filter and an exhaust far from the cup should not intoxicate me. its much more machining. need a piston, seals, cylinder, etc.

what i need in both case are boilers and heating elements. i can start gathering the stuff anyway since no matter what i do, i need 2 boilers that are about 1 liter each.  i will see if i could get a good chunk of brass for cheap.
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chasemonster
Senior Member
chasemonster
Joined: 3 Jun 2010
Posts: 364
Location: Chicago
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Audrey
Grinder: Hario Mini Mill
Drip: V60
Posted Fri Jul 13, 2012, 5:22am
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

Someone named woodsman43 has a couple of "DIY" videos on YouTube that should prove to be interesting.
Here is one of them: Click Here
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GVDub
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jan 2008
Posts: 862
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Londinium I, Arrarex...
Grinder: Gaggia MD85, Dienes Mokka,...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Abid Clever
Roaster: Behmor 1600+
Posted Fri Jul 13, 2012, 7:28am
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

A closed boiler pressurized manual lever like the Pavoni is substantially different from an open boiler gravity-fed system like the Caravel. Caravel group is also a truly unique design without the temperature control issues of a La Pavoni (because the water is always at precisely the temperature you need for extraction (well, at least within the limits of whatever thermostat system you're using). Quite a different beast.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,375
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Fri Jul 13, 2012, 8:27am
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

chasemonster Said:

Someone named woodsman43 has a couple of "DIY" videos on YouTube that should prove to be interesting.
Here is one of them: Click Here

Posted July 13, 2012 link

haha I was about to post one of his vids when I saw this thread. Somehow came across this one the other day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iK3zn8Ex6BI
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myrand
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jul 2012
Posts: 17
Location: canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: pavoni europicolla
Grinder: not a good one
Posted Tue Dec 18, 2012, 11:38pm
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

a couple monts to think about it, then the ideas start to make sens.

i have more practice on the cnc mill, i now can make stuff in a timely manner, especially drilling pannels and some small stuff like that where i just program manually.

i still dont have much budget but its all good, i am sure i can afford the metal.

now, the situation changed. i now have a la pavoni europiccola wich i love. its just beautiful.

what i want now is something automatic and easy, but 100% customisable.

the plan:

a 1 liter boiler made out of stainless. i will try to find a stainless steel tubing to make a non presurised tank.
i have a pid for the temperature control

found some 1000 watt water heating elements on ebay for cheap

procon vane pump installed underneath the boiler, just so it is almost forcefed by the weight of the water in the boiler.
i will put a little switch to make sure the thing never run dry.

brass made portafilter and a head that fits it properly with a 1/4 in long and maybe 1/16 in wide lip on the portafilter that will seal in a groove that fit as tight as possible, this should seal properly just by using an o'ring if everything is square enough.


adjustments:
using the procon pump, a 3 way  valve and a relief valve(all of these actuated manually from the front pannel)
i am expecting to be capable of: adjusting the pressure with the relief.
the 3 way will have one way from the pump, one to the tank and one to the head. it should let me start the pump and sending the flow back to the tank, it will mix the water so its even everywhere. on the other way(to the portafilter), well it will obviously force the water trough the head. i will be capable of cutting the shot longer or shorter by opening the valve to the tank again, and i am confident i will be capable of dealing with the preinfusion time with that system.

other than these 2 adjustment, i will have the pid for water temperature, manual switch to start the pump that will not start until pid reached its temperature.

what i want it to look line now:

what i would like to do, if i find the tank:
very simple desing, think about a big pipe with the flange and these oversized bolts.
this is exactly what i want. big, tall stainless steel tank, a nice flange at the top and a cover held by allen screws all around it.
front pannel will be stainless. controls on top of it.
the 3 way valve, this is the one that will send the pressure to the porta filter. i want something that i need to hold and if i release it sends the flow to the tank. that way there will be no mess and forgotten valved. that switch or valve, i would like it to look like a small beer tap. . . .

side pannels and top pannels will be one single sheet, i will have it bent to fit properly.

the rear of that thing as well as the bottom will be the vents. i hope it will be enough, i might end up installing a fan. as for the vents, holes everywhere should do the job. all the motor and heaters will be in the back anyway, it should do the trick.

next step:
find the tank. i will go see my metal supplier in january.
once i have the tank, i will get the pump, fittings, silicon hoses, find a motor and start making plans for the portafilter.

hopefully everything is done by june :)
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,775
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 Wed Dec 19, 2012, 6:51am
Subject: Re: do it yourself espresso maker
 

You do not want to put hot water through the pump, it is not designed for that type of service.

 
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!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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