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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Upgrading Silvia...  
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rpaulo
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Sep 2012
Posts: 33
Location: USA
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Mon May 5, 2014, 9:47pm
Subject: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

Hi,

I'm thinking of upgrading my Silvia (v3, no PID) to a Crossland CC1.  The reason for this is because I wanted PID + Pre-infusion, but the Silvia, after almost 2 years already has rust accumulated under the black paint. The plastic around the brew head cover is also falling apart.  These are purely cosmetic problems, though, but they left me unhappy.

I've done some back of the envelope calculations and I think it's worth selling the Silvia because the price of the PID for the Silvia with Pre-infusion is around $235.

The only question I have is whether it's an upgrade worth doing.  Anyone has comments?  It's looks really good to me.
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Burner0000
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jul 2011
Posts: 1,048
Location: Cambridge, Ontario Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia, VFA Expres...
Grinder: Macap MX/VFA N1464/Kyocera...
Drip: Manual Drip, French Press
Roaster: Behmor 1600 / Sonofresco
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 5:54am
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

rpaulo Said:

Hi,

I'm thinking of upgrading my Silvia (v3, no PID) to a Crossland CC1.  The reason for this is because I wanted PID + Pre-infusion, but the Silvia, after almost 2 years already has rust accumulated under the black paint. The plastic around the brew head cover is also falling apart.  These are purely cosmetic problems, though, but they left me unhappy.

I've done some back of the envelope calculations and I think it's worth selling the Silvia because the price of the PID for the Silvia with Pre-infusion is around $235.

The only question I have is whether it's an upgrade worth doing.  Anyone has comments?  It's looks really good to me.

Posted May 5, 2014 link

I have the same problem. I also thought at one point to sell and go for the CC1 too but I prefer the build quality of Rancilio.  Once I am able to afford it I'll be dropping $100 on a new frame which I'll rust proof before installing and adding a PID. Sure the CC1 has a lot of things the stock Silvia hasn't incl a slightly larger boiler but some of it's internals such as the tubing and thermo block might not last as long as the Silvia's copper and brass internals.  I'd rather drop $250-$350 on a PID and new frame than another $700 on a slightly better machine with the same bells and whistles.
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Dayglow
Senior Member
Dayglow
Joined: 5 Oct 2007
Posts: 67
Location: Greenville, NC
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 6:23am
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

My v3 Silvia also started developing some slight rust on the frame despite my meticulous cleaning. I ended up taking the opportunity to strip the whole thing down and having it powder coated. I cleaned and inspected all the contacts and disassembled the boiler, group, valves, etc. I basically refurbed the machine for less than a $100 and now it performs like new. I already had a PID so I suppose my situation is a bit different, but I do wish I had preinfusion.
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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,067
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 6:31am
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

A Silvia without a PID can consistently make something which is recognizably espresso.  It cannot consistently make something which is good espresso.  

As you already seem to realize, that's because it can't be temped with a sufficient degree of control enough to allow the user to balance biters and sours.  Without a PID (or some other accurate measuring device), even the best temperature surfing technique is only good to around plus or minus 5F.  

Espresso pulled too hot is bitter; and espresso pulled too cold is sour.  Most people's palates can distinguish anything more than 2.5F away from the ideal temp for a given bean.  Absent a PID, even if a very experienced user gets lucky and hits the ideal temp on the nose when "dialing in," (s)he can't consistently return to that temp.  

On top of that the Silvia (like other SBDUs) can't go from brew temp to steam temp, and then steam a latte's worth of milk fast enough to preserve the underlying flavors and textures of the shot.  

Whether or not modding and restoring your two year old machine makes more sense than simply selling it off and replacing it with something better is a question only you can answer.  

A CC1 isn't the world's greatest machine; it has size and speed limitations.  Steaming is only decent.  Build quality is also only decent, but one doesn't buy a CC1 with the idea of passing it down to a grandchild.  A CC1 represents the least amount of money you can spend and still get a machine which will showcase a good grinder's qualities instead of imposing its own weaknesses in the espresso making chain.  

GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER
Once the temping issues are resolved, extraction is managed with grind, dose and puck building.  Anything grinder performing less well than a Vario will show its shortcomings when paired with a CC1.

The good is that as you ascend the ladders for beans, technique, grinder and machine your espresso not only gets better but easier and more pleasant to make.  The bad is that it never frikkin' ends.

Rich
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,354
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 8:13am
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

CC1 is a great machine, and paired with a Vario is a great combo for the $. It's a performance bargain, barely cost more then a Silvia new but offers a lot more. Though if I already owned a Silvia, or Classic etc, it's still a very nice upgrade, but I would pry look at used h/x machines as well, you might score a nice one for similar price or barely more. But if you want new and that's what your budget allows, CC1 is def kick ass for the $ lol. Bill Crossland has great support as well if you end up having any issues.
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marosmith
Senior Member
marosmith
Joined: 15 Dec 2013
Posts: 85
Location: Lafayette, Oregon
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: NS Oscar, Silvia V2
Grinder: NS MCF, Baratza Encore
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 6:36pm
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

Burner0000 Said:

I have the same problem. I also thought at one point to sell and go for the CC1 too but I prefer the build quality of Rancilio.  Once I am able to afford it I'll be dropping $100 on a new frame which I'll rust proof before installing and adding a PID. Sure the CC1 has a lot of things the stock Silvia hasn't incl a slightly larger boiler but some of it's internals such as the tubing and thermo block might not last as long as the Silvia's copper and brass internals.  I'd rather drop $250-$350 on a PID and new frame than another $700 on a slightly better machine with the same bells and whistles.

Posted May 6, 2014 link

The Silvia is better in every way other than features. The good news is that you can add features to the Silvia.

You can prob scrub out the rust and polish up the steel to preserve it.

I think the potential is better for the Silvia, so make some upgrades and keep it IMO.
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rpaulo
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Sep 2012
Posts: 33
Location: USA
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 7:11pm
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

Thanks for the replies. It looks like it's best to keep the Silvia and fix it.  I just need to find a good place in the SF bay area to remove the rust because I don't have a garage to do it myself.
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Gig103
Senior Member


Joined: 12 Feb 2012
Posts: 225
Location: Arizona
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: French press!
Posted Thu May 8, 2014, 3:37pm
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

rpaulo Said:

Thanks for the replies. It looks like it's best to keep the Silvia and fix it.  I just need to find a good place in the SF bay area to remove the rust because I don't have a garage to do it myself.

Posted May 6, 2014 link

Good call; I was coming in to recommend this, even as a CC1 owner. I am not trying to be critical of my machine, but if you can add a PID for 1/3 the price, that's a good call, aesthetics aside.
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Stangdriverdoug
Senior Member


Joined: 16 Apr 2014
Posts: 9
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu May 8, 2014, 4:45pm
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

I've been really happy with my CC1 but I say fix the issues and add a PID.
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takeshi
Senior Member
takeshi
Joined: 12 Oct 2002
Posts: 961
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto 3.0
Grinder: Super Jolly
Roaster: Amaya Roasting
Posted Fri May 9, 2014, 11:55am
Subject: Re: Upgrading Silvia to CC1
 

rpaulo Said:

The only question I have is whether it's an upgrade worth doing.

Posted May 5, 2014 link

Worth is always highly subjective.  I wouldn't consider such an upgrade (i.e. not going to HX or DB) worthwhile but YMMV.

Grinder seems to be a glaring omission here and it's a very important part of all this.
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