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Francis Francis X5 Repair
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Francis Francis...  
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mparra
Senior Member


Joined: 9 Jul 2009
Posts: 3
Location: Greensboro
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: FrancisFrancis X5
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Thu Jul 9, 2009, 11:25am
Subject: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

Hello,

I have an FF X5 that started leaking around the join between the two boiler halfs.  I hope this is a simple problem with the O-ring that seals these two parts together -- I have a replacement on the way and in the meantime I've gone ahead with the ugly task of removing the boiler.

Question 1:
When I separated the two boiler halves, I noticed that one of the bolts securing it is slightly bent and all of them have bad corrosion of their threading. Any thing to make of that? I assume that the leak has been going on unnoticed for sometime, getting the bolts wet and causing the corrosion. These bolts should obviously be replaced but could some more dire problem have led to the bending?  I've included some pics although the bend is hard to see in them -- it's very slight but I noticed it because the bold "wobbled" as I unscrewed it.

Picture:

Click Here (img.skitch.com)


Question 2:
The inside of the boiler and the heating coil are pretty grimy -- I descaled with cleancaf monthly but it's been in operation for 5+ years so I assume some buildup is to be expected.  While I've got it open I want to remove as much of the buildup as I can. My question concerns the best way to clean this thing without damaging the brass.  Is it okay to use a wire brush along with cleancaf?

Picture:

Click Here (img.skitch.com)

Apologies for the pic quality - my camera does not excel at marco shots.

Thanks all.  Any thoughts appreciated.
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xdavez
Senior Member
xdavez
Joined: 21 Nov 2007
Posts: 1,157
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: La Spaziale Vivaldi II
Grinder: Mazzer mini
Vac Pot: none
Drip: Technivorm
Posted Sat Jul 11, 2009, 11:56am
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

mparra Said:

Hello,

I have an FF X5 that started leaking around the join between the two boiler halfs.  I hope this is a simple problem with the O-ring that seals these two parts together -- I have a replacement on the way and in the meantime I've gone ahead with the ugly task of removing the boiler.

Question 1:
When I separated the two boiler halves, I noticed that one of the bolts securing it is slightly bent and all of them have bad corrosion of their threading. Any thing to make of that? I assume that the leak has been going on unnoticed for sometime, getting the bolts wet and causing the corrosion. These bolts should obviously be replaced but could some more dire problem have led to the bending?  I've included some pics although the bend is hard to see in them -- it's very slight but I noticed it because the bold "wobbled" as I unscrewed it.

don't worry about those bolts  clean 'em with a wire brush.  Or a local hardware store may have NEW stainless ones.

Picture:

Click Here (img.skitch.com)


Question 2:
The inside of the boiler and the heating coil are pretty grimy -- I descaled with cleancaf monthly but it's been in operation for 5+ years so I assume some buildup is to be expected.  While I've got it open I want to remove as much of the buildup as I can. My question concerns the best way to clean this thing without damaging the brass.  Is it okay to use a wire brush along with cleancaf?

There is not much there to cause a problem, IMHO.

dave

Picture:

Click Here (img.skitch.com)

Apologies for the pic quality - my camera does not excel at marco shots.

Thanks all.  Any thoughts appreciated.

Posted July 9, 2009 link

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Jmanespresso
Senior Member
Jmanespresso
Joined: 18 Jan 2009
Posts: 2,109
Location: Westchester NY
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto II
Grinder: Compak K10 - Vario
Vac Pot: Yama-SY5/SY8/TCA5
Drip: V60, Beehouse, CCD
Roaster: Hottop B
Posted Sat Jul 11, 2009, 2:05pm
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

Im not too sure about the first question, so ill leave it to someone else..


But the boiler..

Cleancaf works good for general cleaning and light descaling.  A product called Dezcal does a much better job of descaling.  Its made by the same company, Urnex.  Id pick up some of that and soak the boilers insides in that.  If you still need to use a brush, I would be gentle with it, though the dezcal should clean a good portion of it.

 
Follow Your Bliss

Coffee makes your constantly overcome your prejudices and re-evaluate your own "received wisdoms" when it comes to judging cup flavors. -Tom Owen, SweetMarias
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zircote
Senior Member
zircote
Joined: 10 Dec 2008
Posts: 59
Location: Valley Forge, PA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Fiorenzato Bricoletta
Grinder: Pro M
Roaster: Behmoor
Posted Sun Jul 12, 2009, 9:00am
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

mparra
Replace the bolts.
They look like the threads have been compromised.
Lowes or HD will have something close enough.
Look in the hardware area. They have trays of specialty fasteners.
Go with the stainless.
For cleaning the boiler you can use a brass wire brush.
Not steel or stainless. The brass, being the same as the boiler, will not damage or scratch  the inside of the boiler.
Good Luck
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mparra
Senior Member


Joined: 9 Jul 2009
Posts: 3
Location: Greensboro
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: FrancisFrancis X5
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Mon Jul 13, 2009, 4:02pm
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

thank to everyone replying here.  unfortunately during my dismantling of the upper part of the boiler I broke off the thermostat trying to unscrew it -- I guess the threads were stuck and instead of giving, the part just twisted off --leaving the threaded bit down in the boiler.  The break is flush with the boiler top, so there's nothing to grab onto to try and back it out.

guess I'm sunk.

for anyone else working with an x5 -- beware this delicate part:
Click Here (img.skitch.com)

Thanks again to all for replying
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zircote
Senior Member
zircote
Joined: 10 Dec 2008
Posts: 59
Location: Valley Forge, PA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Fiorenzato Bricoletta
Grinder: Pro M
Roaster: Behmoor
Posted Mon Jul 13, 2009, 6:41pm
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

mparra
Don't panic.
You can get the threaded piece out.
You need some drill bits smaller than the broken piece
Drill out the center of the broken piece with a 1/16" bit first
Increase the size of the bit and open up the hole until the inside of the threads are exposed
From here you should be able to pry the old bits of the thermostat  threads out or if you are ambitious re-thread the hole
When you install the new thermostat use some thermo grease
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mparra
Senior Member


Joined: 9 Jul 2009
Posts: 3
Location: Greensboro
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: FrancisFrancis X5
Grinder: Rocky
Posted Tue Jul 14, 2009, 8:16am
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

Thanks zircote!

I'll give your procedure a shot.
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amzoun
Senior Member


Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 3
Location: california
Expertise: Professional

Posted Fri May 18, 2012, 2:14am
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

Hello. I have the same problem as you. I need to replace the orange O-ring between the 2 part of the boiler and the head, could you please tell me where did you get the rubber seal / gasket any address or phone number ? thanks
email me at
amzoun2000@yahoo.com
my cell number is 530-519-1514
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amzoun
Senior Member


Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 3
Location: california
Expertise: Professional

Posted Fri May 18, 2012, 2:19am
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

Hello, I have a Francis x5 that need the orange O-ring for the boiler and head also need the 2 small o-ring for the heating elements? any one know the exact size or factory specification?. I may order them from a place where they make o-rings
also I could not open the screw with the spring inside the bottom part of the boiler I mean it is inside the head , I removed the small screw that  hold the stanless filter but then there is a screw that need a special key,. I used a flat big screw driver but it does not want to open ..any suggestion? I think the spring is broken and keep the head open and the steam comes down ,, when the machine is on.. lot of steam comes from the brew head ,, please help
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zircote
Senior Member
zircote
Joined: 10 Dec 2008
Posts: 59
Location: Valley Forge, PA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Fiorenzato Bricoletta
Grinder: Pro M
Roaster: Behmoor
Posted Mon May 21, 2012, 3:35pm
Subject: Re: Francis Francis X5 Repair
 

amzoun
Try 1st line for the parts you need.
Lelit and FF share some parts.
The last time I needed the o-rings that you need they were the same.
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