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Adventures with a Brasilia Century -- From start to finish...
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Sun Jul 16, 2006, 8:03pm
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

Different view

aeroplane: BC9.jpg
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Sun Jul 16, 2006, 8:04pm
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

The ends of the boiler shined up quite well.

aeroplane: BC11.jpg
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Sun Jul 16, 2006, 8:15pm
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

I got the machine together to the point that power could be applied, and it works again! everything pumps and valves and steams and so forth and so on... Except that the boiler leaks around the end on the element side, but not out of the element gasket -- out of the boiler head itself. I am not really suprised, as what little I know about these says that the boiler head gasket is pretty finicky. So I will finish up the paintjob - My wife decided on a color that is very close to LaPavaoni Red - bolt it all together, and take it to a professional who has probably taken apart a million boilers!
I have had this machine for more than two years and really love it. (I got it used, it's never given me any trouble) A bit of a tune-up and new paint will be good for it.


--jim
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benway999
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 48
Location: California
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Jul 18, 2006, 8:13am
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

thanks for posting the pics etc

I have the same machine.  [But mine is called a Brasilia Cappuccino Del.]  Brasilia info is hard to find and somewhat contradictory...

Brasilia parts are available online-- I'm sure you could get the parts from them and do the work yourself.


http://www.coffeestuff.com/brasilia1.html

http://www.espressoparts.com/category/03.01.brasilia/

failing that Rosito Bisani in LA are the main US importers for Brasilia

what pressure do you run your boiler at?

hope that all helps
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Tue Jul 18, 2006, 9:47am
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

Rosito Bisani has the parts. They have been great in the past with that! My problem is I can't get the boiler heads off without resorting to more force, and I am a bit shy about it...

My pressure needle rests (cold) showing about .3-.4, but once hot and cycled it's at 1.9 .
IMO that gauge is only good at displaying relative steam availability. It has nothing to do with brew pressure, and is usless to help determine pressostat setting... unless it is in gross mis-adjustment. I REALLY wish that it was a good dual manometer.

Tearing it apart has made me scratch my head alot  -- not in repairing it, but in the decisions that were made in parts selection. It has a killer pressostat, 3-way valve, vacuum breaker and dosing electronics. But the boiler looks like it's made from 13 cm (5inch) copper pipe with generic brass heads on the end, and the whole shebang is powered by a 41w UKLA vibe pump! But what the heck -- it works pretty well.

How is yours working? What do you like/dislike?

--jim
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Tue Jul 18, 2006, 7:24pm
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

I just talked to Jose at Rosito-Bisani and placed an order for a bunch of parts -- mostly seals and o-rings and such, the type of things that need to be replaced when you remove them, etc... as well as the seals for the boiler heads.

How do you get the heads off? Well, acccording to the guy who works on them --

Hit 'em with a bigger hammer!!!!

(a rubber or plastic one, of course...)

It will take a couple of days to get the seals, I will not open it (the boiler) untill then. Pics to follow, for those who are interested.

--jim
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benway999
Senior Member


Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 48
Location: California
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Jul 19, 2006, 2:14pm
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

I like my machine  a lot.

I'm not quite sure what you mean by "boiler head"?

its my understanding that the flat circular brass "ends/sides"  of the boiler are held in place by a bolt that runs through the boiler [which i'm sure you already know]

hope that helps
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Sat Jul 22, 2006, 7:31am
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

THE BIGGER HAMMER!
Actually, I didn't have a rubber hammer, so I had to buy this one. It was up to the task!

aeroplane: BC13.jpg
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aeroplane
Senior Member
aeroplane
Joined: 1 May 2004
Posts: 228
Location: Colorado
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale S1 v2
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Drip: Bodum French press
Roaster: FreshRoast w/modified switch
Posted Sat Jul 22, 2006, 7:36am
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

Boiler heads off, descaling. Note the 'fill line' on the heads.
The rod is the heat exchanger.
Parts from Rosito-Bisani are on their way, the boiler itself requires 4, one on each head, and one for each end of the HX.

aeroplane: BC12.jpg
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rileys
Senior Member
rileys
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 132
Location: St. Louis, MO
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: La Marzocco Linea AV 2-group...
Grinder: Mazzer Super Jolly
Vac Pot: Nicro Knock-off; Sunbeam;...
Drip: Melitta cone; Chemex CM-1;...
Roaster: Diedrich IL-7 (work)
Posted Mon Jul 24, 2006, 11:07am
Subject: Re: Weekend project -- Gutting my Brasilia Century -- PICS!
 

aeroplane Said:

Parts from Rosito-Bisani are on their way, the boiler itself requires 4, one on each head, and one for each end of the HX.

Posted July 22, 2006 link


you need to call them up and make sure that is correct.  the century i rebuilt required 6 gaskets for the boiler: an o-ring for each endplate (mounts in groove in part that fits into boiler), 2 o-rings for the heat exchanger, and a teflon flat gasket for each endplate (mounts between endplate and edge of boiler).

my initial parts order from RB did not include the teflon gaskets, and the boiler leaked.  when RB was contacted again, there was an "oh yeah, you need these, too" moment.

also, i strongly suggest you do a cold hydrostatic test on the reassembled boiler before you replace it in the machine.  and don't overtorque the heat exchanger nuts...  that gets expensive quickly.
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