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Easy to clean grouphead?
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Jen_Savage
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Joined: 25 Mar 2006
Posts: 42
Location: CT
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sun May 27, 2007, 8:09pm
Subject: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

I'm tired of screwing and unscrewing things in order to properly clean the grouphead on my machine. I just want something a little more low-maintenance.

Is there such a machine out there? Something that somehow locks the grouphead in place without screwing, so I could just unlock and slide it out or something?
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Noonievut
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Joined: 9 Sep 2006
Posts: 472
Location: Toronto. Canada
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Rocky DL
Vac Pot: Other - Aeropress, Clever,...
Posted Mon May 28, 2007, 5:15am
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

A machine with a 3-way solenoid valve allows backflushing, which helps clean the grouphead.  I actually find it quicker to unscrew and clean the shower and dipsersion screens (soak in cafiza).

I have to think that your next purchase/upgrade should be based on more than just cleaning the group though...like shot quality, steaming abilitiy, etc.
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Jen_Savage
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Joined: 25 Mar 2006
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Location: CT
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon May 28, 2007, 8:55am
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

Well yes :) but I was hoping to find a machine that was the best of both worlds.
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Tex
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Tex
Joined: 27 Apr 2006
Posts: 840
Location: Texas - That's God's country to everyone else!
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Bunn ES-1A (PID'd), Gaggia...
Grinder: Rancilio MD50
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Drip: Melitta Clarity
Roaster: TurboCrazy &...
Posted Mon May 28, 2007, 10:34am
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

Jen_Savage Said:

I'm tired of screwing and unscrewing things in order to properly clean the grouphead on my machine. I just want something a little more low-maintenance.

Is there such a machine out there? Something that somehow locks the grouphead in place without screwing, so I could just unlock and slide it out or something?

Posted May 27, 2007 link

Howdy!
What machine are you having such trouble with? I once had a friend ask me to permanently attach the screw to a Gaggia screen so it could be spun out without using a screw driver. It never worked as well as he'd hoped, but with his arthritic hands any helped was appreciated. And that was only one part of the group - other parts still had to be unscrewed to thoroughly clean the group.

I don't know of any machine that completely eliminates screwing around. Back flushing will help a bit but I'd hate to think that you'll be using your machine without deep cleaning the group once in a while.

Good luck!


  ARGH!

Tex: pirate 01.gif
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John_Manzo
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John_Manzo
Joined: 5 Aug 2005
Posts: 318
Location: Calgary
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Elektra Microcasa a Leva,...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Vac Pot: none
Drip: presspot
Roaster: nada (yet)
Posted Mon May 28, 2007, 3:16pm
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

Tex Said:

I don't know of any machine that completely eliminates screwing around. Back flushing will help a bit but I'd hate to think that you'll be using your machine without deep cleaning the group once in a while.

Posted May 28, 2007 link

Get to know the Elektra Microcasa a Leva. No screw, screen held in place by the gasket, easy to pry out with a blunt edge (like the handle of a spoon in my case)- No three-way, no backflushing. Wiggle, remove screen once a week or so, wipe the piston. No pump to fret over. Not a workhorse and not a volume machine for obvious reasons, but there are some things that the MCaL does incredibly well and it manages to obviate some vexing issues with other machines. Lever machines seem a lot more durable, just based on narratives on longevity by owners. Mine is my fifth espresso machine and by the best shots, best steamer, best everything.
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Jen_Savage
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Joined: 25 Mar 2006
Posts: 42
Location: CT
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed Jul 4, 2007, 11:55am
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

John_Manzo Said:

Get to know the Elektra Microcasa a Leva. No screw, screen held in place by the gasket, easy to pry out with a blunt edge (like the handle of a spoon in my case)- No three-way, no backflushing. Wiggle, remove screen once a week or so, wipe the piston. No pump to fret over. Not a workhorse and not a volume machine for obvious reasons, but there are some things that the MCaL does incredibly well and it manages to obviate some vexing issues with other machines. Lever machines seem a lot more durable, just based on narratives on longevity by owners. Mine is my fifth espresso machine and by the best shots, best steamer, best everything.

Posted May 28, 2007 link

I certainly will now that I know that. I have been looking at that machine anyways, since it's so beautiful.
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passionateone
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passionateone
Joined: 27 Dec 2006
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Espresso: Bezzera BZ02S
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Posted Wed Jul 4, 2007, 10:29pm
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

FWIW: I think my buddy's Expobar has a gasket held group head.  If your still thinking pump machine.
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mrgnomer
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mrgnomer
Joined: 16 Oct 2005
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Location: NA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Vetrano, Silvia, Olympia...
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Posted Thu Jul 5, 2007, 5:17am
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

All the e61 groupheads I can think of have the showerscreen held in place by the gasket.  When you pry out the gasket the showerscreen comes with it.  Sounds easy but gaskets don't like to come out.  I had a Silvia and unscrewing the showerscreen was a lot easier than getting the gasket/showerscreen assembly out of an e61.  The problem with the 361 set up usually is trying to get the gasket out without gouging a piece out of it.

I find that the showerscreen doesn't get as dirty quick when it's sealed in so you don't have to clean it as regularily as a screwed in one.  With the Silvia I had to clean the showerscreen atleast once a week.  With an e61 set up once every two or so months would probably do.  I took out the e61 showerscreen after one month and it was a waste of time.  Nothing there and I gouged my gasket doing it.  However, it will get dirty eventually.

This was mine after almost a year of not cleaning it.  The gasket is surrounding the showerscreen and holds it in place in the group at the showerscreen's rim, which is slightly turned out.

mrgnomer: IMG_2219.JPG
(Click for larger image)
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M_R
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M_R
Joined: 8 Aug 2011
Posts: 112
Location: Sydney
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic
Grinder: Lelit PL043MM
Posted Sat May 4, 2013, 5:53pm
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

See my post below for the solution to my whinge.
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M_R
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M_R
Joined: 8 Aug 2011
Posts: 112
Location: Sydney
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic
Grinder: Lelit PL043MM
Posted Sat May 4, 2013, 8:26pm
Subject: Re: Easy to clean grouphead?
 

Perhaps a moderator might give a moment or two's thought to posting a sticky on this widespread complaint I write of the difficulty of removing the shower screen in order to clean both it and the bottom of the shower disc click here to identify on a Gaggia Classic.
Lots of owners of this terrific machine have found that after some time many months, usually during which there was no problem in unscrewing the shower screen/disc/whatever you want to call it, it just can't be unscrewed any more. And the common anxiety given voice to is along the lines of "I'm afraid I'll strip the thread of the screw".
I have found the following, and I state it from experience
  1. leave the machine off all night, so that all metallic parts are cold
  2. remove the cord connected to power, and then take off everything movable, not forgetting the see-through water tank!
  3. lie the machine gently on its back (no, the water in the internal tank will NOT leak out!)
  4. now you have much easier access to the shower screen and its little screw; and you can, having carefully worked out which direction is ANTI-clockwise, access the screw and get it moving again

Having myself neglected to take this trouble for months, whingeing throughout about the bloody impossibility of cleaning thehead disc and shower screen, I have today given myself a savage pinch.
The method above is all it takes.
I PROMISE!
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