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Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 12, 2012, 2:57pm
Subject: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

I have now completed the restoration of a Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 1 group HX espresso machine with automatic programmable shot volume (4 programmable buttons + semi-auto start-stop buttons). The machine is originally from the late 1990s (the old manometer was date stamped 1997).

I bought it quite cheaply off a guy living on a island outside Gothenburg, Sweden (I live in neighbouring Denmark). He actually delivered the machine by boat to the nearest harbour. It was purchased as faulty, as there was a known leak in the gasket between the boiler and group head and as it had only been fully tested years earlier before being put to rest in his shed. After finding the machine online, I did a bit of reading and concluded that it was a good machine that would be worth the effort to fix.

My prior experience in working with espresso machines was limited to modifying a couple of Nuova Simonelli Oscars by adding OPV and pressure-release valves, as well as trouble-shooting and fixing a commercial Rancilio Classe 6 2 gr. machine by cleaning and changing 3-way valves and a few gaskets here and there. The Brasilia was thus my first real serious challenge in trouble-shooting and repairing an espresso machine.

Ok, so I knew that the gasket between the group holder on the boiler and group had to be changed (the group on this machine is "strapped" onto the boiler in order to keep the group consistently heated instead of a thermosyphon-system). This was confirmed when I started up the machine, but after changing this gasket as well as a defective boiler manometer, strange things started to happen: when trying to brew and especially back-flush, the boiler manometer went all the way to the max and water leaked through the safety valve. After some research, I concluded that the heat exchanger tube was most likely perforated! After further research on Coffeegeek, I learned that the boiler of this Brasilia Cappuccino model could be opened by means of a plastic hammer (!). After taking the boiler apart, the leak was clearly seen: a rupture in the HX tube of a couple of centimeters parallel to the tube. Most likely, the machine had been exposed to frost when stored away and the ice pressure had simply ruptured the tube. I had this tube as well as the rest of the boiler, fittings, pipes etc. cleaned and descaled, and had the hole in the tube welded by a plumber.

After reassembly, and the changing of a couple of leaking solenoid valves, the machine works. Once it has heated properly, it is very heat-stable. Steaming works nicely and is very powerful, although one has to get used to the push-button system instead of knob-turning. I have now only tested a couple of shots on it, but the initial results are good and I am expecting a lot once I start to get to know it better.

So this is basically what I did:

The machine was thoroughly cleaned and descaled - the boiler etc. and group by soaking in citric acid, the rest was flushed though with citric acid without dis-assembly.

A few parts were replaced:
- Replaced manometer
- Replaced 3-way valve
- Replaced 2-way valve controlling the hot water delivery
- Replaced a lot of gaskets, screws etc.
- Replaced safety valve
- Replaced steam wand and tip (the original was a strange large "froth-aid" type pipe)

And as mentioned, the hole in the HX tube was professionally welded.

A paint job could be considered, as the cabinet does have a few scratches and small rust spots (no dents luckily).

I am considering routing the excess water from the OPV back to the water tank instead of into the drip tray in order to avoid filling the tank so often. A further possible mod would be a brew-pressure gauge, as you can get dual manometers that are of the same dimension as the standard boiler manometer used for this Cappuccino model.

I am extremely grateful for all the info, tips and kind help received from this and other coffee-forums. Not the least Rick's restoration/rebuild project and answers has helped me a lot:
Click Here (coffeegeek.com)

Any questions and comments are more than welcome. If anyone has more information on the Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 model, I would also to curious to know more. I have managed to find a users manual, but no schematics on the machine.

Here is a picture of the machine as it looked before buying it. I will post more pictures on the process and how it look now (once I get around to shoot some more pictures).

Spalte5: Brasilia.jpg
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 12, 2012, 2:59pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

A picture of the inside pre-restoration.

Spalte5: DSC_7708.JPG
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 12, 2012, 3:00pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

The cleaned and descaled boiler, heat exchange tube, and heating element.

Spalte5: DSC_8180.JPG
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 12, 2012, 3:01pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

Welding on HX tube.

Spalte5: DSC_8181.JPG
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yorel1
Senior Member


Joined: 13 Feb 2012
Posts: 25
Location: Wellington NZ
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappucino Del 1,...
Grinder: La Pavoni Jolly
Roaster: Going to try popcorn maker...
Posted Thu Feb 16, 2012, 8:03pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

Nice! I love that shine on the boiler. I just missed out on the same machine up for sale here in NZ. I'll be interested to follow you progress. Happy pulling.
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 19, 2012, 1:10pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

As promised, I will post a few pictures of the finished machine. But first a picture of the backside of the group head (pre-cleaning and descaling), as I could not find any schematics on this type of Brasilia group head and I though it could thus be of interest to others. The gasket (which I replaced) fits into the groove around the water chamber.

Spalte5: DSC_7714.jpg
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 19, 2012, 1:11pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

Post-restoration: checking the brew pressure and adjusting the OPV.

Spalte5: DSC_8225.jpg
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 19, 2012, 1:13pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

Pulling a double shot - machine is restored, but still topless.

Spalte5: DSC_8232.jpg
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Spalte5
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1
Grinder: Compak k3
Posted Sun Feb 19, 2012, 1:19pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

This is how the Brasilia looks now. Pulls great shots and is very temperature stable. Fantastic steaming abilities by the way (at least compared to my Nuova Simonelli Oscar). Still considering repainting, so have not reattached the sides yet.

Spalte5: DSC_8235.jpg
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IenBell
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Feb 2012
Posts: 25
Location: Uk
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Sun Feb 19, 2012, 9:30pm
Subject: Re: Brasilia Cappuccino Del 1 restoration
 

I really like that glow on the furnace. I just skipped out on the same device up on the market here in NZ. I'll be fascinated to go by you success. Satisfied taking.
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