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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Gaggia valve...  
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ilcaffedio
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Jan 2006
Posts: 456
Location: Atlanta, GA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Astra G.A.
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: Chemex
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 11:21am
Subject: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

Have any of you upgraded a Gaggia without a 3 way solenoid valve, by replacing the 2 way valve with a 3 way valve?  Any tips?
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Jasonian
Senior Member
Jasonian
Joined: 8 Aug 2005
Posts: 3,856
Location: Lubbock, TX
Expertise: Professional

Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 1:23pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

Honestly, I don't think it's worth the effort.  You don't gain anything with a 3-way valve except convenience of removing the PF handle immediately after pulling the shot and having a dry puck.  Otherwise, there's really no point.  In fact, some speculate that having one can actually compromise the quality of the espresso due to contamination by old oils in the valve.

Just my $.02

 
www.AJCoffeeCo.com - www.espressotrainer.com - www.TX-Coffee.com
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ilcaffedio
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Jan 2006
Posts: 456
Location: Atlanta, GA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Astra G.A.
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: Chemex
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 1:39pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

Sometimes I have to wait for several minutes (more than 5) for the pressure to dissipate before removing the portafilter after a shot.  Otherwise I end up with grounds all over my group.  Sometimes even after frothing milk there is still a lot of pressure.  

I can estimate how much of the pressure has dissipated, by the resistance on the handle before I break the seal.  

Do you know any tricks to relieving the pressure more quickly?
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silver2k
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 74
Location: PA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Quickmill Vetrano
Grinder: Mazzer Super Jolly
Roaster: Behmor
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 2:02pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

Here is my routine:

-Make espresso
-Flip steam switch and wait
-Steam milk
-Turn steam switch off
-Open steam valve and vent into a jar
-When steam valve is no longer venting release the portafilter
-Close steam valve
Then:
-Start cleaning routine
OR
-Rinse PF, dry and load up again
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Jasonian
Senior Member
Jasonian
Joined: 8 Aug 2005
Posts: 3,856
Location: Lubbock, TX
Expertise: Professional

Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 4:35pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

ilcaffedio Said:

Sometimes I have to wait for several minutes (more than 5) for the pressure to dissipate before removing the portafilter after a shot.  Otherwise I end up with grounds all over my group.  Sometimes even after frothing milk there is still a lot of pressure.  

I can estimate how much of the pressure has dissipated, by the resistance on the handle before I break the seal.  

Do you know any tricks to relieving the pressure more quickly?

Posted February 27, 2006 link

That's news to me.  I've found that pressure BUILDS UP more than it dissipates as the moisture on top of the puck evaporates within the same volume of space.  

I am able to pull the PF almost immediately after pulling the shot.  While the puck isn't entirely dry, I don't usually have to worry about a PF sneeze.. I just turn the handle very VERY slowly so that if it DOES sneeze.. it's minimal.

 
www.AJCoffeeCo.com - www.espressotrainer.com - www.TX-Coffee.com
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beanmuncher
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jan 2006
Posts: 128
Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: VBM DoubleDomo v3
Grinder: Macap MXK/R
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 5:21pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

Yeah; I'm on a gaggia espresso and can pull the PF within 30 sec
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ilcaffedio
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Jan 2006
Posts: 456
Location: Atlanta, GA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Astra G.A.
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: Chemex
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 7:00pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

That makes sense.  While I thought the pressure was dissipating, it was actually building up.  That's why I get explosive pf sneezes.  Ok, I'll try removing the pf earlier rather than later.
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BSOD
Senior Member
BSOD
Joined: 25 Jan 2004
Posts: 198
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Espresso Deluxe
Grinder: Imat Lux
Drip: FP - Various
Roaster: Hmm . . . .
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 7:59pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

ilcaffedio Said:

Sometimes I have to wait for several minutes (more than 5) for the pressure to dissipate before removing the portafilter after a shot.  Otherwise I end up with grounds all over my group.  Sometimes even after frothing milk there is still a lot of pressure.  

I can estimate how much of the pressure has dissipated, by the resistance on the handle before I break the seal.  

Do you know any tricks to relieving the pressure more quickly?

Posted February 27, 2006 link

On my Espresso (no solenoid), I just VERY GENTLY loosen the PF shortly after the shot to get rid of the pressure. If you do this slowly enough there should be no explosion of grounds.
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kaanage
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Mar 2004
Posts: 1,452
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bezerra BZ99, Gaggia...
Grinder: NS MCF, Imat Lux, Cunil...
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 9:38pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

ilcaffedio Said:

Have any of you upgraded a Gaggia without a 3 way solenoid valve, by replacing the 2 way valve with a 3 way valve?  Any tips?

Posted February 27, 2006 link

This is almost impossible to do unless you were to buy a whole new group assembly as well. The solenoid models have water channels in the group casting that run out to and back from the side of the group where the solenoid sits and directs the water flow as required. You would also need to add a hole to the casing for the solenoid relief tube to run to the droplet tray.

It would probably be cheaper to sell your Carezza and buy a Baby than to get the parts required (unless you can get hold of a dead Baby or Classic).

I agree with what the others have said about removing the PF before the machine gets up to steam temp.

Greg

 
do'in it on the cheap
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ilcaffedio
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Jan 2006
Posts: 456
Location: Atlanta, GA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Astra G.A.
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: Chemex
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Feb 27, 2006, 10:55pm
Subject: Re: Gaggia valve upgrade
 

I'm anxious to try removing the pf earlier on.  However I'm low on beans, and I know I won't be able to get any good beans tomorrow because it's Mardi Gras! :-D

I would prefer that removing the pf earlier is the solution.  I may try finding a Gaggia baby on eBay to sacrifice.  I would just buy a classic or baby, but the carezza just looks so much nicer in my opinion even that it's plastic.  Maybe a Tebe...

Still considering what Jasonian said about residual oils.  Wouldn't a quick group flush, flush out any oils; or is that something that only a backflush would take care of?
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