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Francis Francis X1 - Jay Johnson's Review
Posted: July 27, 2008, 7:51am
review rating: 7.5
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Francis Francis X1
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More About This Product
Arrow The Francis Francis X1 has 43 Reviews
Arrow The Francis Francis X1 has been rated 7.20 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Francis Francis X1 reviews have been viewed 255,059 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Scott Smith 8.75
Patrick Moss 8.00
Josh Alwitt 8.00
Steve Strawman 8.00
Phil M 7.60

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 4.6
Manufacturer: Francis! Francis! Quality: 3
Average Price: $799.00 Usability: 4
Price Paid: $550.00 Cost vs. Value 3
Where Bought: Sur La Table Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 4+ years Overall 3
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: No
Similar Items Owned: X1
Bottom Line: If you need parts, get ready to ship your machine.  Using the steamer: for 12oz of milk to go from 40* to 160* takes over 3 min.  FF customer service is juvenile at best.
Positive Product Points

Pretty and it has a small footprint.

Negative Product Points

Inconsistant shots.  Steamer is a bad joke.  Parts are not sold, you must ship the machine

Detailed Commentary

Well, I'm on my second machine.  After 3 - 4 years, the first one started to blast hot water and coffee grinds out of the group assembly (changed the gasket an no luck).  Sur La Table was a dream to work with.  They instantly exchanged the machine for another.  This new machine (I've had for a couple of years) has issues out of the box.  The steam wand constantly leaks, and my temp gauge went out.  Called FF for parts and they said they can't sell parts, you must ship it to them to have it fixed.  The bubble gum smacking *chic* on the other end said you really don't need the temp gauge anyway.  Well that may have been true when I first discovered home brewing, but now I have some experience of what it's like to pull bad shots rather often because the machine is not temp stable and must be finessed to achieve perfect temp for extraction.  Try doing that without a temp gauge.  Never buy a machine that you can't monitor the temp.  This machine is now worthless.  Buying a Brewtus 2.  Do some research on dual boilers, e-61 groups, importance of temp stabilization, and you will see this is just a prettier version of Mr Coffee.  Oh, have you ever fallen asleep while steaming milk?  The Brewtus (and other machines like it) steam 12oz in 50 sec or less.  Literally, the X1 steams 12oz in about 3 to 4 min.  And forget about microfoam unless you are the Dalai Lama.  What a turd.  Keep in mind, I've used this damn machine(s) since 2002.  I have pulled shots daily for 6 years on a X1.  I will admit that I can pull a mean shot (not consistantly).  Just tired of mediocrety.  This machine is great for a beginner until the beginner samples a god shot and realizes some machines can do it consistantly.  I paid $550 and am happy with the cheap machine's performance, but I see the X1 is nearing $1k.  They are crazy.  

My model year is 2003 with a brass boiler.

Buying Experience

Great experience at Sur La Table.  Love the store.  They took back a nearly 4 year old machine in exchange for a new one.

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review rating: 7.5
Posted: July 27, 2008, 7:51am
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