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Old 07-25-2020, 10:24 AM
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William William is offline
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OT:Espresso Machines - Manual/Lever

So I'm have an itch to get another machine. I don't mind repairing/refurbishing if it is a good quality machine. That said I've always wondered about manual machines. Cool retro aesthetic, but having never worked one are they worth the little bit of extra work to pull a good shot? We don't steam a lot here, mostly just pull straight shots, sometimes add a little milk.

An inquiring mind would like to know.






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Old 07-25-2020, 11:09 AM
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Btw, not that it's a necessary thing, just getting the itch to try something else out. Even with my Seaco, a really good commercial grade burr grinder, fresh beans, and a naked non-pressurized portafilter, I've got it dialed in and I'm pulling some really good shots...






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Last edited by William; 07-25-2020 at 12:18 PM.
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  #3  
Old 07-25-2020, 11:11 AM
Andreas Andreas is offline
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https://www.olympia-express.ch/en/products/cremina
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Old 07-25-2020, 11:17 AM
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William William is offline
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Nice machine!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...ature=emb_logo







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Old 07-25-2020, 11:59 AM
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Totally Not what you are asking, but my wife and kids surprised me with this little gem for Father’s Day. It is not the one I was looking for but I have fallen in love with this little machine. Fast, easy, clean, makes a perfect cup and perfect froth every time.

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Old 07-25-2020, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Tickdoc View Post
Totally Not what you are asking, but my wife and kids surprised me with this little gem for Father’s Day. It is not the one I was looking for but I have fallen in love with this little machine. Fast, easy, clean, makes a perfect cup and perfect froth every time.

Nice! I haven't ruled anything out, just looking at options and was also curious about manuals.

Does that run a pressurized portafilter?


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Old 07-25-2020, 01:54 PM
echappist echappist is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William View Post
Btw, not that it's a necessary thing, just getting the itch to try something else out. Even with my Seaco, a really good commercial grade burr grinder, fresh beans, and a naked non-pressurized portafilter, I've got it dialed in and I'm pulling some really good shots...






W.
That's probably the most important component in your set-up. I have a so-so burr grinder and a more expensive machine, but I constantly get uneven extraction and sprays. This actually wasn't an issue a few years ago, but it happens a lot more frequently now. I think for better consistency, I probably need a better grinder.

Which segues into the discussion re: lever machines. One really needs everything as dialed-in and consistent as possible, b/c the manual pulling introduces more variables. So in that regard, you should be set to use lever machines.
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Old 07-25-2020, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by William View Post
Nice! I haven't ruled anything out, just looking at options and was also curious about manuals.

Does that run a pressurized portafilter?


W.
I’m not qualified enough to answer that. I leave all that to Gail:

(Btw, I was ready to return this machine until I saw this review)

https://youtu.be/WJByklLa1ps
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Old 07-25-2020, 03:10 PM
9tubes 9tubes is offline
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It depends on what you're looking for and your budget. The Pavoni machines have a difficult time with temperature stability. The trend over the past 15 years or so has been to carefully control temperature to improve shot quality. On that basis I'd suggest an e61 machine with PID temperature control. If you don't steam much you can save a bit by using a single-boiler machine like:

http://www.chriscoffee.com/collectio...ill-alexia-evo

That machine also gives the option of flow control, the greatest development since precise temperature control.

If budget is an issue, the Rancilio Silvia is still the best bang for the buck around, but with some tradeoffs:

http://www.chriscoffee.com/collectio...cilio-silvia-m

Last edited by 9tubes; 07-25-2020 at 03:30 PM.
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  #10  
Old 07-25-2020, 04:32 PM
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Gsinill Gsinill is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William View Post
So I'm have an itch to get another machine. I don't mind repairing/refurbishing if it is a good quality machine. That said I've always wondered about manual machines. Cool retro aesthetic, but having never worked one are they worth the little bit of extra work to pull a good shot? We don't steam a lot here, mostly just pull straight shots, sometimes add a little milk.

An inquiring mind would like to know.






W.

We have the upgraded “Professional” version and love it.
We bought it during our first vacation 20 years ago in Tuscany.
Works great and has been our only coffee maker until this spring when we got one of those built in Miele appliances as part of a kitchen remodeling project.
The Miele is fantastic and helps if you have folks over i.e. need to make more than 1 or 2 lattes or cappuccinos but I still use the La Pavoni a lot.
Just a great ritual to start the day...

Needs a $30 rebuild (seals and gaskets) every year or so but it’s easy and actually something I don’t mind doing.
There is literally nothing other than the heating element and the seals that can break, I am sure mine will outlive me and my wife.

Long story short, if you are a “mechanical” guy and don’t mind the little maintenance it requires, get one.
If you’re not in a hurry you can probably find one that needs new seals on CL relatively cheap.

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Old 07-25-2020, 04:34 PM
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I've got a www.decentespresso.com de1plus and a niche zero grinder. I'm REALLY happy with that combo, tho it's as far from a lever machine as you can get.
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  #12  
Old 07-25-2020, 04:38 PM
earlfoss earlfoss is offline
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OT:Espresso Machines - Manual/Lever

I own a La Pavoni Professional. It's maybe ~20+ years old and works just as good as when it was new... Well, I bought it cheap off EBay and it was in need of a total overhaul which was actually a fun and quick process. I use it every day. Yes, it needs a good cleaning. That's on my to-do list

Mins hasn't had problems with temp stability or anything like that. It always produces excellent espresso. I think that the lever machines maybe require a little more attention to how finely ground the beans are, but not having had any other machine, I can't say if this is true.

Only maintenance required is to replace gaskets every 2 years or so. Even then a full regasket isn't required, just need to do the ones in the group head.

Last edited by earlfoss; 07-25-2020 at 04:46 PM.
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  #13  
Old 07-25-2020, 05:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
I've got a www.decentespresso.com de1plus and a niche zero grinder. I'm REALLY happy with that combo, tho it's as far from a lever machine as you can get.
You are James Hoffman?

Kidding. Nice set up!
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  #14  
Old 07-25-2020, 06:52 PM
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Steve in SLO Steve in SLO is offline
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I have a La Pavoni like earlfloss and agree with what he said. I made a few rotten shots with it before I got myself dialed into it, but it has been great since.
I like to think of it like an old Silca floor pump: a classic that needs a little maintenance and performs steadily over the years. It may may not be as quick as sexy as the latest, but a great workhorse especially for traditionalists.
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  #15  
Old 07-26-2020, 11:32 AM
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Just something about those levers machines...so mechanical.



The search is on...





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