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Cheap pressure gauge!
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gajetjunkie
Senior Member
gajetjunkie
Joined: 14 Nov 2003
Posts: 139
Location: Houston , TX
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Valentina Semi-auto ,...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini ,Capresso...
Vac Pot: Not yet , French Press
Drip: Technivorm
Roaster: Behmor , SC/TO
Posted Wed Aug 11, 2004, 12:44pm
Subject: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

I needed to check the boiler pressure on my Expobar. I'm pretty tight/cheap , so I made a homemade temporary pressure gauge to dial in my Pstat.

You can get everything at the auto parts store. I bought a round tire pressure gauge , a short length of fuel hose , you could use a piece of HP air hose , and 2 hose clamps. I just put it all together and attached it to my steam wand as you see in the pic below. Then just open the steam valve to read the pressure and dial in the Pstat.

I use a pressure conversion program or chart to convert from psi to bar. Here is a link to one http://www.omega.com/techref/pressconverter.html

I set my Expobar boiler pressure to 1.0 bar at the top of the cycle and my shots improved! :-)

Total cost for the parts $7.

Murray

gajetjunkie: expobar 002 (Small).jpg
(Click for larger image)
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brianbonedoc
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Joined: 5 Jan 2004
Posts: 17
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Aug 11, 2004, 9:11pm
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

That's ingenious!

I too have wondered what my pressure is on my Expobar Office.

Did you have much to change on the PStat?

-B
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gajetjunkie
Senior Member
gajetjunkie
Joined: 14 Nov 2003
Posts: 139
Location: Houston , TX
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Valentina Semi-auto ,...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini ,Capresso...
Vac Pot: Not yet , French Press
Drip: Technivorm
Roaster: Behmor , SC/TO
Posted Thu Aug 12, 2004, 3:31am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

brianbonedoc Said:

That's ingenious!

I too have wondered what my pressure is on my Expobar Office.

Did you have much to change on the PStat?

-B

Posted August 11, 2004 link

When I first checked the boiler pressure it was at 12psi/.827bar which is too low for me. It only took about one full turn clockwise on the pstat and that brought the pressure up to 15psi/1.03bar. My expobar has the pstat with the thumbwheel adjustment not the small brass screw. The shots improved and I noticed that I had more steam for frothing.
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Strad
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Joined: 4 Aug 2004
Posts: 27
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Aug 12, 2004, 7:18am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

Brilliant! Now that's my kind of fix-it.

I already have the tubing and the hose clamps, so all I need now is the gauge.
...........Oh, and I have to decide on a machine!
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jrtATL
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jrtATL
Joined: 20 Feb 2004
Posts: 1,035
Location: Austin TX
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Expobar Office Control
Grinder: Mazzer Jolly; Cunill...
Drip: Melitta Clarity
Roaster: Drum on a Weber grill; HG/DB
Posted Thu Aug 12, 2004, 7:44am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

gajetjunkie Said:

My expobar has the pstat with the thumbwheel adjustment not the small brass screw.

Posted August 12, 2004 link

Be careful with that thumbwheel pstat.  This is what mine had. Mine broke very easily when I overadjusted once.

Doubt this will happen to you.  Just thought I should pass along the warning.

Jeremy

 
"I've appeared before every court in the state.  Often as a lawyer." - Lionel Hutz, Esq.
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gajetjunkie
Senior Member
gajetjunkie
Joined: 14 Nov 2003
Posts: 139
Location: Houston , TX
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Valentina Semi-auto ,...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini ,Capresso...
Vac Pot: Not yet , French Press
Drip: Technivorm
Roaster: Behmor , SC/TO
Posted Thu Aug 12, 2004, 7:57am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

jrtATL Said:

Be careful with that thumbwheel pstat.  This is what mine had. Mine broke very easily when I overadjusted once.

Doubt this will happen to you.  Just thought I should pass along the warning.

Jeremy

Posted August 12, 2004 link

Thanks for the warning. :)I do like this pstat better than the one on my Oscar though , it had the small brass screw, it seemed a little more finicky.
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Worldman
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Worldman
Joined: 16 Nov 2004
Posts: 1,824
Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Expobar Office Control
Grinder: Cimbali 6/S
Posted Wed Dec 15, 2004, 8:55am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

CHEAP!  I like it!  

OK, but what do you mean by the following?

I set my Expobar boiler pressure to 1.0 bar at the top of the cycle and my shots improved!

What is the top of the cycle?  Do you leave the steam valave oopen during the whole process?  Also, in what way did the shots improve?  

Thanks,
Len

 
Len
Len's Espresso Blends
www.lensespressoblends.com
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mike01
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Jan 2004
Posts: 372
Location: SE Michigan
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex
Grinder: Mazzer SJ, Vario-W
Vac Pot: Yama Stovetop
Drip: Bunn Trifecta
Roaster: Hottop
Posted Wed Dec 15, 2004, 9:40am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

The top of the cycle on the Expobar machines is the point when the boiler light goes off.  This will be the point where the pressure is highest.  Another thing you can check is the deadband of the p-stat.  This is the difference between the highest and lowest pressures of the boiler cycle.  It should be somewhere around 0.2Bar if your p-stat is operating correctly.  Yes, the steam valve is left open during the entire process.  Raising the boiler pressure will improve the shots if they are sour and the temp is too low.  On the other hand, lowering the p-stat setting will improve the shots if they are bitter because of too high of a brew temp.
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petewa
Senior Member


Joined: 16 Jan 2004
Posts: 19
Location: CT
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Expobar Pulser
Grinder: Mazzer Mine and SMP
Vac Pot: none yet
Drip: Bunn, FP, Chemex
Roaster: SC/GC
Posted Wed Dec 15, 2004, 10:01am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

i have had my second pulser for a few weeks now... and the shots are amazing right out of the box... the first one had a bad p-stat...   i am very interested in making that Cheap pressure gauge... thanks

 
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"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that problem." Ronald Reagan, 1985
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Srock
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Nov 2004
Posts: 87
Location: Boston
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Expobar Pulser
Grinder: Rocky
Drip: Starbucks Thermal Pots
Posted Thu Dec 16, 2004, 5:41am
Subject: Re: Cheap pressure gauge!
 

Very cool - doe you think a tire pressure guage is precise enough at low pressures to give an accurate result? My guess they are calibrated to be their best at 20-30lbs pressure.  I may look around to see if there are cheap low pressure guages avail. Your idea is teriffic !

Steve
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