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Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
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D4F
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Joined: 15 Mar 2012
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Posted Mon Jan 21, 2013, 9:44pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

The PF without a basket fits very differently than with.  I have a Gaggia but the process is similar.  The PF handles rotates around farther to lock, and the lock is on a small rim of the PF, not as wide and smooth as the basket.  It is not as good a lock.  In a normal brew with the puck in the basket, the basket makes the seal, not the PF.  Inspect the PF edges and make sure that it is smooth and does not have any nicks.  Some PFs have a notch and will not seal.  

If you cannot seal the system, or have a controlled slow that simulates a brew at about 50 - 60 ml/25 seconds, then the readings will be somewhat meaningless.  Just adjusting and attempting to measure the pressure should not have harmed the machine.  Worse case, you can reverse the adjustment.

If you did not get a glycerine filled gauge, it will bounce a lot and be difficult to read.

I am not sure what you mean with this  "whenever i try running the pressure up, water drips out of the pressure release valve. even after removing the full portafilter with gauge water drips for quite a while from out of the sides of the bottom of the portafilter."
   
   What is dripping after you remove the PF?

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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jpc
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Joined: 4 Jul 2008
Posts: 22
Location: madison, ct
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: rancilio sylvia
Grinder: la cimbali, adapted by chris
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Posted Mon Jan 21, 2013, 10:04pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

D4F,
thanks for response.
you're right. i was not clear. what i meant is two things. first, that water keeps dripping out of the pressure relief valve each time i run a pressure test. second, that after each test when i remove the portafilter (and its attached pressure gauge) water continues to drip from around the brew head for quite a while. makes me wonder if the pressure getting up to 210 might have cracked something causing a leak from somewhere around the brew head.

did not get a glycerine filled gauge. cost of one?

the PF does not have a notch.

appreciate your thoughts, D4F.

john c.
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D4F
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Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 1,981
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Mon Jan 21, 2013, 10:32pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

First, the pressure.  The system should be able to stand that near stall pressure, 15 bar pump x 14.5 psi/bar is about 217.5 psi.  Internally the seals are basically O rings. washers and gaskets.  If you have a leak, then I expect that you would see something inside the case.  

Pressure relief valve could mean the relief from the 3 way, or from the expansion valve.  Refer to this diagram, it is a good one to put in favorites.

http://www.partsguru.com/user/SilviaParts.pdf.pdf

When was it last descaled?  Stuck valve?  How has the expassion valve been set and cleaned?

A oil/glycerine filled gauge is nice, it damps the needle oscillation, but not needed.  I was offering an explanation of a bouncing needle, not trying to spend your money.  I used a non-filled gauge and lived with a little bounce.  If I was mounting for continued use or used it many times, perhaps.

Could you crack something?  Not likely, but perhaps not impossible.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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RapidCoffee
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RapidCoffee
Joined: 4 Dec 2004
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Espresso: La Spaziale S1
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Posted Tue Jan 22, 2013, 8:14am
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

jpc Said:

i'm about ready to throw up my hands, spend too much money packing up this bloody sucker (silvia) to send it to some repair person to see if i haven't ruined it. this pressure gauge measurement has me in fits.
...
thought i had screwed the pooch when i worked inside the housing having forgotten to turn off power, big spark flew, machine went dark. but turned out house circuit breaker just needed to be flipped back on.

Posted January 21, 2013 link

You cannot harm the Silvia by running the pump with a portafilter pressure gauge. Or a blind filter. This machine has a 3-way valve and is designed to be backflushed. The pressure buildup is not all that different from pulling a ristretto shot. (Note: you do not want to run the pump for extended periods of time, regardless of the application.)

If you are going to ignore basic safety precautions (like unplugging the machine when you mess with the internal electrical wiring), then stop working on it immediately and send it off for repair.

Good luck with your machine, and please be more careful in the future!
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sleepdance
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sleepdance
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Posted Tue Jan 22, 2013, 10:00pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

So the verdict is that this pressure gauge should work fine on a Silvia? If so, count me in. I have no idea what my pressure is currently set to.

Thanks for the brilliant writeup RapidCoffee!
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jpc
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Joined: 4 Jul 2008
Posts: 22
Location: madison, ct
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: rancilio sylvia
Grinder: la cimbali, adapted by chris
Vac Pot: cona
Roaster: alpenroast
Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 3:00pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

dear RAPIDCOFFEE and D4F
thanks so much for your supportive and guiding help last week end in my attempts to adjust the pressure on the silvia. my only time to fool with this is on the week ends. last week end i had played poorly at tennis, was still sick for 5th week after having the flu, was still under water with hospital re-credentialing required by hospital, and still had not learned a whole new system of billing codes required by medicare since january first. so, failing to get Silvia working was the last straw for me last week end. with your help, i hope to give it another try.

RAPIDCOFFEE, i promise to be more careful. thank you for your concern.

in response to D4F's questions: last de-scaled about a month ago. expansion valve was opened to reveal spring and long piece within it. was cleaned with cotton swab and coffee bristle cleaning brush to remove debris.

so, with regard to "bounce" behavior of non-glycerine pressure gauge:
is that to say that when pressure gradually builds to around 150, then for one second bounces up and back from 210 that one can ignore the 210 as an anomalous reading and simply assume that the real sustained reading indicates that the pressure is 150?

Another question is about getting a seal with portafilter and its attached pressure gauge. the leaking seems to be around the seal between the portafilter (without the basket) and the group head. i've examine the portafilter rim and there are no irregularities or notches. no matter how hard i turn to tighten the handle, i still get leaking, spitting, flowing of water through that seal once the pressure build up to 150.

Also, If anyone has explanation as to why so much water drips from the brew-head after one of these measuring attempts, i am all ears. the process seems to be that i tighten portafilter, turn on machine, watch pressure gauge build up to around 120 (5 seconds), 150 (next 3-4 seconds), spike up to 210(lasts half a second before returning to 150), leaking around seal occurs, turn espresso-making off, remove portafilter which is now filled with water, and then for next 2-3 minutes, water drains from brew-head or from the housing around the brew-head.

i welcome any suggestions.

thanks,
john c.
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jpc
Senior Member


Joined: 4 Jul 2008
Posts: 22
Location: madison, ct
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: rancilio sylvia
Grinder: la cimbali, adapted by chris
Vac Pot: cona
Roaster: alpenroast
Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 9:49pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

to D4F,
hi there. i've posted a response to your questions from last sunday. i hope you'll take a look and to hear back from you.
thanks,
jpc
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D4F
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Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 1,981
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Expertise: I like coffee

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Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 10:05pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

A video showing the typical vibration/oscillation of the gauge.  The video also is about changing the Vib pump pressure, but another topic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joQs13t15QI

Oil filled on Silvia

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfqkprLNQIY

I think that video can be typical of oscillation of a gauge, though not everyone sees that.  You are describing jumps of pressure up to 210 that are probably due to intermittent seal and blow by.  I doubt that you can get a meaningful reading with a leak between the PF and gasket.  The system has to be steady state, no leak, or perhaps a leak of 50 -60 ml in 25 seconds like a double.  Some pressure systems are build with a valve to simulate flow, but not an intermittent leak.  There is more/similar posting on the $10 pressure gauge thread mentioned at the beginning of this.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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D4F
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 1,981
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 10:15pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

jpc Said:

Also, If anyone has explanation as to why so much water drips from the brew-head after one of these measuring attempts, i am all ears. the process seems to be that i tighten portafilter, turn on machine, watch pressure gauge build up to around 120 (5 seconds), 150 (next 3-4 seconds), spike up to 210(lasts half a second before returning to 150), leaking around seal occurs, turn espresso-making off, remove portafilter which is now filled with water, and then for next 2-3 minutes, water drains from brew-head or from the housing around the brew-head.

Posted January 26, 2013 link

Does the 3 way work properly?  After a normal brew are you getting the same dripping?  Can you hear the pressure/water discharge into the drain pan?  No leaks inside the machine, a question that you posed earlier?  Can you put a blind basket in the PF and seal it, no leaks or drips?  Have you been backflushing?

Sorry to hear about the flu and credentialling, which was worse :)

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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D4F
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 1,981
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Sun Jan 27, 2013, 4:12pm
Subject: Re: Want to Buy: pressure gauge that attaches to portafilter on Rancilio Sylvia
 

Another similar thought, when has the gasket been changed?  Could the leak be at the group to gasket vs gasket to PF?

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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