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I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > I never knew...  
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,670
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 Sun Dec 23, 2012, 11:25pm
Subject: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

I am now off from work for the Christmas shut down until after New Years. I have turned my machine on and it was going to be on for the next week solid.... but that has changed...!

I went to flush the HX for my shot this morning and my machine was strangely silent with very little pressure from the GH, a few more times pushing the switch and I realized the pump was not running, a couple more times and it tried to run but was not up to speed, in short, I am about 99% sure the start cap went bad, it happens, at the VERY worst it will need a new pump/motor but I seriously doubt that.

Anyway, how I realized how spoiled I am was when I dug out the Sylvia with PID for use until I can get to the electronics store for a new cap and it was like agony waiting between pulling shots and steaming, the puck level in the same basket and PF needs to be lower to prevent channeling which I had very bad on the first lock.

I know there are a lot of members who have a PID Sylvia as a goal, I truly feel sorry for them if they are working on equipment that elevates Sylvia to a high status. The steam is anemic, the tiny wand is hard to work with and worst, the shots go very cold when waiting for the seeming days it takes to warm the boiler to steam temp.

Yes it is working properly for anyone who does not know the whole story behind my Sylvia, it just had a full rebuild, new heater, pump OPV, 3 way valve, tubing and the addition of a PID, so there is nothing wrong with her as to normal function, it just is such a HUGE step down compared to my day to day machine.

I do not mean to insult anyone, and I am sorry if I did but I never FULLY understood how spoiled I was with my ECM, NOW I fully realize it!

 
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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NobbyR
Senior Member
NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
Posts: 2,021
Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Poccino Opus One, Ariete
Grinder: Eureka Mignon Istantaneo
Vac Pot: N/A
Drip: Melitta Linea Unica de Luxe
Roaster: N/A
Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 3:20am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

I guess it's like having a new computer. At first it seems incredibly fast, but after a while you get used to its speed and start thinking, that it's still too slow. And when you have to work with an even older system again, it becomes excruciating.

I love my HX machine and would hate to go back to temperature surfing my old SBDU again, but sometimes I get a trace of upgraditis.

Have a very Merry Christmas, Wayne, with great espresso to highlight your dinner, and a Happy New Year.

 
***
"This drink of the Satan is so delicious that it would be a shame to leave it to the infidels." (Pope Clement VIII on coffee, when he was urged to ban the beverage)
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qualin
Senior Member
qualin
Joined: 30 Jun 2012
Posts: 649
Location: Calgary, AB
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex Duetto 3
Grinder: Mazzer Mini Elect. Type A
Vac Pot: Looking to buy
Drip: Manual
Roaster: Considering?
Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 7:03am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

calblacksmith Said:

The steam is anemic, the tiny wand is hard to work with and worst, the shots go very cold when waiting for the seeming days it takes to warm the boiler to steam temp.

Posted December 23, 2012 link

This was one of my main motivations from moving away from the Silvia and going to the Izzo, the waiting for the steam temperature.. I didn't find the steam wand too difficult to work with.
Moving to the Izzo certainly requires different thinking on my part to use the wand properly. I will certainly say that I'm not used to how quickly these machines heat milk. I'm used to the Silvia
taking about roughly 30 seconds to heat 12 oz of milk, my Izzo can do it in about roughly half that time, so it certainly does take some getting used to.

calblacksmith Said:

it just is such a HUGE step down compared to my day to day machine.

Posted December 23, 2012 link

Yeah, but how much is a new Silvia as opposed to a new version of your day to day machine? :-)

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,670
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 Dec 24, 2012, 8:25am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

qualin Said:

Yeah, but how much is a new Silvia as opposed to a new version of your day to day machine? :-)

Posted December 24, 2012 link

Well, I will put it this way, you could have a PID Sylvia for every day of the work week and still have money left over for accessories :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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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,207
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 8:35am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

calblacksmith Said:

I know there are a lot of members who have a PID Sylvia as a goal, I truly feel sorry for them if they are working on equipment that elevates Sylvia to a high status. The steam is anemic, the tiny wand is hard to work with and worst, the shots go very cold when waiting for the seeming days it takes to warm the boiler to steam temp.

Posted December 23, 2012 link

Put a 150C steam stat in there in place of the 140C one, & I'm sure you wouldn't be saying that Wayne! ;)
I've never found the original steam pressure to be anemic in the least bit..
Have you seen my posts on the results of when I swapped mine out some 7 years ago? I've talked about it much earlier though.

 
http://twitter.com/CoffeegeekCraig
http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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frcn
Senior Member
frcn
Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 3,350
Location: Northern California
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Double
Grinder: Mazzer Kony, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Hario, 2 Cory pots, 1 Cory...
Drip: Behmor Brazen, Bunn A10 mod...
Roaster: computer controlled Hottop,...
Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 8:45am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

Over the last dozen years I have been into this things have changed... a LOT. back than Silvia was IT. There was not much available in the "pro-sumer" range of machines. For some time there have been a myriad of choices in the $1000-5,000 range with technical innovations available, driven in a large part by the home enthusiasts who have been modding their machines and demonstrating the value of the mods in forums such as these. Would there be so many PID equipped machines to choose from if it weren't for the early modders:

Tricked-out Silvia
Andy Schecter  
Feb 4 2001, 12:43 am
http://tinyurl.com/78eos

Temperature study of my Sylvia (looong)
Greg Scace
Feb 5 2001, 12:50 pm
http://tinyurl.com/awhtp

Proportional Temperature Control for Sylvia
Greg Scace
Mar 5 2001, 6:32 am
http://tinyurl.com/7m43d

PI Sylvia Tempmeasurements (really)
Greg Scace
Mar 24 2001, 2:39 pm
http://tinyurl.com/d2rof

SCHOMER'S # 27
Prof. Brian L. GOMES da COSTA
May 21 2001, 5:41 pm
http://tinyurl.com/d4lud

Tricked-out Silvia part 3: Procon pump!
Andy Schecter
Apr 15 2001, 1:10 pm
http://tinyurl.com/8crek

Construction, Thermodynamics and heat transfer of espresso machines - Ok I ranted a bit already
Greg Scace
Sep 20 2001, 1:03 pm
http://tinyurl.com/72omq

Tricked-out Silvia: heated brew head
Andy Schecter
Sep 16 2001, 4:26 am
http://tinyurl.com/ahvf8

Anyway, a lot of the folks from back then have experimented, learned, and moved up. The experience allowed them to compare a modded home machine (PID'd Silvia) to better machines (and in some cases, much better machines). I think that is why a number of the "old-timers" have tried to talk new shoppers out of Silvia, and steered them to either spend more for a better machine, or less for a machine as capable.

I agree, to go back to a SB-DU machine and have to wait for the steam temp to rise, bleed boiler, rise again, steam, flush stem, refill boiler, then pull the next shot? Ludicrous! And we haven't even touched on the joy and ease of a plumbed machine!

But there is far more than that here. The consistency that a HX or DB machine supplies the user, when compared to Silvia, is astounding. $2000 for a new refrigerator? And all it does is make food cold? And balk at spending the same on a machine that makes espresso? What is wrong with the world today?   ;-)

 
Visit My Website
www.EspressoMyEspresso.com
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,207
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 8:57am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

WoW, thanks for all those links & a trip back down memory lane to the good ol' days of alt.coffee Randy! {:-D

 
http://twitter.com/CoffeegeekCraig
http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,670
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 Dec 24, 2012, 10:09am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

CraigA Said:

Put a 150C steam stat in there in place of the 140C one, & I'm sure you wouldn't be saying that Wayne! ;)
I've never found the original steam pressure to be anemic in the least bit..
Have you seen my posts on the results of when I swapped mine out some 7 years ago? I've talked about it much earlier though.

Posted December 24, 2012 link

Hi Craig. Yes, I will stick by my statement LOL! The PID on my Sylvia also takes care of steam temp and it is running at about 290 F, it has a lot to do with the tiny diameter wand of the steamer which is need to maintain a reasonable pressure as the smaller the diameter of the tube the higher the flow speed will be for a set volume of steam. My ECM has a wand that is much bigger and steams a lot more volume at a time and for as long as I want.

Sylvia is an able machine, no doubt, I was able to pull some very nice shots this morning on her. I did use my naked PF from the E61 GH and my triple basket, the same as my main machine.

Like I said, I did not intend to put anyone down, not at all. For straight shots I achieved very nice ones this morning, the steam routine though leaves something to be desired.

 
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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mmlugar
Senior Member


Joined: 3 May 2007
Posts: 8
Location: Coventry, RI
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 11:07am
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

Yes, consider yourself quite lucky.  I'm basically working blind on my Vetrano, and it definitely takes some fiddling.
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Iluvdabean
Senior Member
Iluvdabean
Joined: 7 Mar 2005
Posts: 1,249
Location: Kentucky
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Nuova Era Cuadra/Gaggia...
Grinder: Baratza Preciso/K-A Pro...
Drip: Bonavita BV 1800 TH
Roaster: Nesco 1010/Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Dec 24, 2012, 3:37pm
Subject: Re: I never knew EXACTLY how spoiled I was!
 

Oh nothing wrong with loving your machine so no offense taken. Actually I think my old faithful Gaggia Classic would produce the same shot once in awhile,yet I dont have unlimited steam nor much control over the other
processes. So Im sure it isnt as consistent. For me its always been about the bean so I must confess an obsession with Vivaci. I also have gone through pounds and pounds of Intelligentsia and Klatch. Ive became an ardent home roaster too.
I got stuck in this espresso rut for what seemed to be years and years...then one day i fell in love with drip again. Started running all kinds of good coffee through my Capresso MT 500. Klatch,Paradise, Intelligentsia,and many more I would
find on coffee reviews website. I got some great Galapagos from Tree Frog coffee...( yes the good stuff) and have had this passionate love of Chiapas which started last year when my wife  and I went on a cruise to Mexico. So to me its about the bean. What extracts the coffee is a method/process and the machine a tool. Im fine also with expensive espresso machines. There are times I get tempted to get one but just havent ever felt that it would give me a better latte.I have been using the MDF and its the only weak point Ive found in my system. There are times I have known that with the coffee Im using a need a grind setting in between and dont have the option. So I have finally asked Mrs Clause for a Baratza Preciso and its actually under the tree.
I havent posted here for a long time because I just got into my own journey focused on the bean more than the machine. I think its a guy thing really,we get off on machines. Yet I do think that there is a tendency for a lot of
arguing over what machines,like somehow its going to elevate a persons knowledge or passion for the bean,which is a little off I think. So no, be stoked you have a great machine and yes some are better than others
I am just not sure it makes the coffee better.



calblacksmith Said:

I am now off from work for the Christmas shut down until after New Years. I have turned my machine on and it was going to be on for the next week solid.... but that has changed...!

I went to flush the HX for my shot this morning and my machine was strangely silent with very little pressure from the GH, a few more times pushing the switch and I realized the pump was not running, a couple more times and it tried to run but was not up to speed, in short, I am about 99% sure the start cap went bad, it happens, at the VERY worst it will need a new pump/motor but I seriously doubt that.

Anyway, how I realized how spoiled I am was when I dug out the Sylvia with PID for use until I can get to the electronics store for a new cap and it was like agony waiting between pulling shots and steaming, the puck level in the same basket and PF needs to be lower to prevent channeling which I had very bad on the first lock.

I know there are a lot of members who have a PID Sylvia as a goal, I truly feel sorry for them if they are working on equipment that elevates Sylvia to a high status. The steam is anemic, the tiny wand is hard to work with and worst, the shots go very cold when waiting for the seeming days it takes to warm the boiler to steam temp.

Yes it is working properly for anyone who does not know the whole story behind my Sylvia, it just had a full rebuild, new heater, pump OPV, 3 way valve, tubing and the addition of a PID, so there is nothing wrong with her as to normal function, it just is such a HUGE step down compared to my day to day machine.

I do not mean to insult anyone, and I am sorry if I did but I never FULLY understood how spoiled I was with my ECM, NOW I fully realize it!

Posted December 23, 2012 link

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