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etherealbeats
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Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 1
Location: London
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Fri Dec 14, 2012, 8:30am
Subject: Gaggia Classic Priming
 

I have a new Gaggia Classic (about a week old) and when priming the machine by opening the steam valve and turning the brew switch on, water is also coming from the group head. Should this be happening or am I doing something wrong here?

Any ideas? Thanks in advance.
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calblacksmith
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calblacksmith
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Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
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Posted Fri Dec 14, 2012, 9:39am
Subject: Re: Gaggia Classic Priming
 

Instead of using the brew switch, use the punp switch. This is the one you use when you want hot water to come out of the steam wand.

This only pumps water into the boiler and not out of the brew group.

 
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D4F
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Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 2,022
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Fri Dec 14, 2012, 10:52am
Subject: Re: Gaggia Classic Priming
 

The steam wand is not large enough diameter to take the full flow of the pump.  With air/steam in the boiler top, the tank vents through the wand and fills.  You can hear a change in pump sound as the tank fills and water comes out the wand, and out the group.  The pump loads slightly when it stops moving some air/steam.  I do not get water out the group/head until water is coming out the wand and the tank is full.

Hope this helps.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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shortyjacobs
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Joined: 3 Dec 2012
Posts: 5
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic
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Drip: Melitta Cone filter,...
Posted Fri Dec 14, 2012, 11:16am
Subject: Re: Gaggia Classic Priming
 

Standard operation when turning on the brew switch is the solenoid to the group head opens, so water should come out of the head and the wand.

Some machines have a "hot water" button, which operates the pump but leaves the solenoid closed, so the boiler can only expel water through the steam wand.

To ensure I have primed my Classic fully, (and I have one of the older ones without a "self priming steam valve", a valve which most Classic owners plug up anyway because it malfunctions and dumps hot water back into the reservoir), I hit the steam and brew switches together.  The steam switch is a double action switch, it both triggers the higher temperature loop for steam temp in the boiler, AND disables the solenoid from activating when the brew switch is flipped.

The flow of water is much greater than the boiler can heat, so you'll get steam out of the wand for a few seconds as the boiler fills, then water/steam, then water.  When water comes out, the boiler is full.

Short version, hit both the steam and brew switches, open the steam valve, and after a few seconds water will flow.  Your boiler is primed.
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