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2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > 2nd hand Gaggia...  
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stray_bullet
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jul 2012
Posts: 4
Location: Brighton
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Wed Jul 25, 2012, 3:55am
Subject: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

Hello,

I've wanted to buy a Gaggia Classic and a grinder for years, now I finally have the money and the space in the kitchen.

I've found a 2nd-hand set of Gaggia Classic + MDF for 220 - is it worth it?
- they are 6 years old
- the steam valve is leaking (can get a new one for 36 but not sure if I can replace it myself)

Is it worth the price? (total 256 for machine + grinder + the valve + transport)
Would I face costly repairs in the near future?
Would I be better off to buy a new machine for 200 and get a grinder to go with it (I'm thinking Ascaso I-mini for 150 or refurbished old-version Gaggia MDF for 115 or a 2nd hand Gaggia MDF for about 50 - comments welcome about the choice of grinders, too)

In advance, thanks for your advice; it will be much appreciated :)
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calblacksmith
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calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 8,038
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 Jul 25, 2012, 4:24am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

ANY used machine can be a gamble, regardless of how new or old it is, for that matter even NEW machines can hive issues, this is why manufacturers back them up for 3 months, 6 months or a year etc.

The value of a used machine can only really be decided on by you but if you are saying that the difference between new and used is 30 to 100 pounds, well I think I know which way I would go...... :<P

 
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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stray_bullet
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jul 2012
Posts: 4
Location: Brighton
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Wed Jul 25, 2012, 4:52am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

Thanks for your tips;

I might be able to get that set for 200 (2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF + new valve)
or even another one for 80(!)
If I went for new items though, I think I'd go for an aluminium I-mini - that's 200 + a new G. Classic is another 200, so it's 400 altogether.

As you can see, the difference in price might be 200-320, so it is not that small after all.

To be honest, I'd like to buy the I-mini grinder because - in contrast with the MDF -  it's not made of plastic, it hasn't got a doser, it's new, smaller and more powerful. On the other hand, it's rather expensive for me (it's how much my sister earns in a month, to provide context). So basically I'm trying to see is someone can provide a good argument for buying the cheaper, 2nd-hand stuff - only the machine or the whole set.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 8,038
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 Jul 25, 2012, 7:18am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

I buy lots of stuff second, third or even more hand. For ME, the value of new VS what I can buy used .... in good shape, has me buying the used. Your money will always go further when buying "pre loved" vs brand new.. provided you know what you are doing and what you are buying is in good shape. I can live with a few scratches etc in exchange for a very attractive price. YMMV!

 
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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SJM
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2004
Posts: 1,724
Location: CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: SAMA (2), Maximatic, Cremina...
Grinder: K-10PB, Rancilio MD-50
Vac Pot: no like
Drip: no like
Roaster: HotTop   Huky en route
Posted Wed Jul 25, 2012, 7:59am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

Two things to consider:  

    Classic Steam valves always leak;  you can replace it quite easily but the new one will leak again in a few months.  On the other hand you can mod it with a Dremel so that you can clean it the next time it leaks, so....the leaking steam valve isn't really an issue.   Classics are easy to work on and parts are readily available.  But I don't know what that price represents compared to a new machine for you.

    The MDF isn't worth anything to you if you have a Classic, so consider the price being asked as being the price for the Classic itself.  You will want a better grinder.
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stray_bullet
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jul 2012
Posts: 4
Location: Brighton
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Mon Jul 30, 2012, 3:19am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

Thanks for your tips guys.
I got myself a cheapish 2nd-hand Classic and a new Ascaso I-mini; now waiting for the deliveries.
Any essential reading you recommend on using/maintenance?

SJM Said:

you can mod it with a Dremel

Posted July 25, 2012 link

What do you mean? I only know that dremel is a brand of tools and don't know what kind of modding you're talking about.
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SJM
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2004
Posts: 1,724
Location: CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: SAMA (2), Maximatic, Cremina...
Grinder: K-10PB, Rancilio MD-50
Vac Pot: no like
Drip: no like
Roaster: HotTop   Huky en route
Posted Mon Jul 30, 2012, 7:39am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

You can use a cutting blade (I happened to use the one on my Dremel) to cut the steam valve into two parts so that you can actually clean the inside part of it.  Without this modification, you cannot get inside the steam valve if it gets scale inside it, which is the most likely reason that it leaks.  

For more information on how to do it, you can visit the Gaggia Group (see my signature).  Several of us over there have done it.  It's easy.  Once your steam valve has been divided into two parts it is easy to remove and clean.  Okay, okay, I haven't used mine.  I got a new steam valve, mounted it, and then modified the old one.  The old modified one will get mounted when the new one's leaking gets too annoying.
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stray_bullet
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jul 2012
Posts: 4
Location: Brighton
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Mon Jul 30, 2012, 5:20pm
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

Thanks again.
Yahoo? Haven't used it since... about 1999 :)
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SJM
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Nov 2004
Posts: 1,724
Location: CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: SAMA (2), Maximatic, Cremina...
Grinder: K-10PB, Rancilio MD-50
Vac Pot: no like
Drip: no like
Roaster: HotTop   Huky en route
Posted Tue Jul 31, 2012, 6:43am
Subject: Re: 2nd hand Gaggia Classic + MDF - is it worth it?
 

stray_bullet Said:

Thanks again.
Yahoo? Haven't used it since... about 1999 :)

Posted July 30, 2012 link

Yeah, we get a lot of snark about the old platform, but....
we have a large membership of people who have Gaggias, a lot of cumulative experience with Gaggias, and a willingness to share.
Also manuals, wiring diagrams, "how to" articles, etc.
It's all free.
No sponsors whose products get pushed.

Old but...effective.
(like some of us)
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