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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Alex Duetto...  
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germantownrob
Senior Member
germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,141
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 12:10pm
Subject: Alex Duetto Owners Thread
 

Yes I know, I don't like shiny machines, I love HX machines, I wanted a machine I would have for a lifetime, things change. Turns out the wife likes shiny things, the DT1 is out of stock and shipments have already been delayed, my Oscar broke down 4 weeks ago and I have not had a good espresso since, and I am so sick of drip I have almost given up drinking coffee.

So I only called Chris' to talk for a while, Mary made it way to simple for me to just pull the trigger.

A question. I will be using this  from the tank until it finds a proper spot for plumbing in (I do like that it has the ability to do both), my cabinets are 17 3/4"  and the Duetto is 16 1/2" tall. Will I be able to fill the reservoir without moving the machine around?
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Coffeenoobie
Senior Member
Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,016
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 12:21pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

Grats and send that oscar to me I will fix it right up... and keep it :)

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

My coffee treasure map...
Click Here (maps.google.com)

Oscar trick out: http://s156.photobucket.com/user/GandBteam/story/14231
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germantownrob
Senior Member
germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,141
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 12:38pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

Coffeenoobie Said:

Grats and send that oscar to me I will fix it right up... and keep it :)

Posted January 10, 2013 link

thanks Helen.

The fix is not a big deal with My Oscar but it involves enough breaking down of the machine and at least $100 in parts for the repair. The thing is if I was going to have it that far apart I should do a full break down, clean up, mods, fix what is broken, and fix what could be soon to break, this is more time then I want to spend wrenching on a machine that has broken down on me 4 times in 3.5 years since new. The decision became easy to just buy a new machine. Still this is a good machine with a new Sirai PS, a bottom less PF, a bunch of group gaskets ( probably a whooping $10 worth, lol), and probably some other Oscar things. While it would be a good machine to fix up it would make an excellent parts machine for somebody, hint, hint. Think about it, if interested send me an email,  you would get a very special deal, if not interested I would list this on B/T/S and could use your input for a fair price.
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 2,979
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 12:42pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

Hey Rob,

I have a Duetto II, similar cabinet height as you, and I still haven't found a plumber to come out and run water to my bar area, so I am still playing the "fill the reservoir" game.  Short answer is, no, you won't have to drag the machine out every day.

I have found it very useful to have a large funnel handy.  I "borrowed" one from my home brewing equipment, so I know it's safe for food. Every day, I remove the cup tray from the top of the machine and then the reservoir lid and then hold the funnel at an angle so the spout is over the reservoir, then I pour the water in from a pitcher.  It ain't pretty, but it works.  The machine is (IMO) too heavy to have to move every time you want to add water to the reservoir.  Now, what I should do (until I can get plumbing brought to the bar) is add a short flexible hose to the bottom of the funnel to make it a little easier...maybe I need to make a trip over to DeFalco's (local home brew supply)?

Hope this helps you!

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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germantownrob
Senior Member
germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,141
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 12:56pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

Thanks Ron, that helps a lot, especially going to the home brew store to look for a funnel.

I went ahead and got it in 15amp and Mary made it sound easy enough to switch it to 20amp, what is yours? Mary made it seem like at 15amp doing 6 milk drinks may require some waiting while at 20amp there would be no waiting, again this is an easy enough fix to just change out the outlet since all my kitchen outlets are on 20 amp breakers.
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 2,979
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 1:46pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

Mine's running in 15 amp mode.  The wait is really only a matter of 10-20 seconds max (estimating) to get the steam boiler back up to temp (and thus, to get the steam pressure gauge back up to nearly 1.5 - where I have mine set)...and that's only when you've run enough water through the brew boiler to have to refill the steam boiler (as the water goes first into steam boiler, then into group boiler).  I asked some pretty pointed questions around when I got mine, and Chris himself recommended not using it in 20 amp mode unless you have a dedicated outlet (I was thinking I'd just change out an outlet, since my Romex is all 20 amp too).  I think it's draw is over 18 amps in 20 amp mode, so if you've got other appliances and lights on the same circuit, you may blow it.

The PID programming function is super easy.  The only "difficulty" is if you don't interface fast enough it resets to operating mode from programming mode.  Fortunately, that just means it goes back to how you last set it, rather than restoring defaults each time.  I think Chris' sends it with the steam boiler set to 255F.  I bumped mine up to 260 to get the max pressure close to 1.5.  I also had to lower the brew pressure slightly, as it was nearly 10 bar.  Brew temp is easy to change.  I should be keeping a log on shot timing and brew temps for each of the beans I use, but...well...I'm just not that diligent.

I did modify the wand.  It comes as a no burn and I just found the steam wasn't dry enough and that my microfoam wasn't quite as good as my old Silvia with the articulating mod.  I found that very frustrating.  Someone else who was having the same difficulty converted theirs to a burn me and said his steam improved 100 fold (or something like that).  I had similar results (well, maybe not 100 fold, but you get the idea).  jwoodyu started a thread on the steam wand mod a while back.  It's really easy.  take the tip off and grab the plastic tube wiht needle nose pliers, then pull it out.  Time commitment is...maybe 2 minutes?...basically however long it takes you to grab your tools, unscrew the tip and screw it back on.  I ordered a rubber sleeve from espressoparts for less than $5 (get the 10mm one), but you can make one from Sugru, if you have some around (I forget who suggested that, but I've since bought some and it's really cool stuff).

what else?  Oh, the II has these rubber sleeves that sit on the inner shell under the cup tray, to cushion the contact between the two.  They pop off all the time when you lift the tray to get to the reservoir...well, they used to.  I applied a small amount of high tack gasket seal and they don't come off anymore.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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jwoodyu
Senior Member
jwoodyu
Joined: 31 Dec 2010
Posts: 847
Location: Michigan
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Allex Duetto II
Grinder: Mazzer Major
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 2:47pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

RIGHT ON BRO!!!!!!!!!

I can't wait to get your feedback initially and over the long haul. On the question of 15 vs 20 amp I am just not fast enough for it to make a difference to me even when I am entertaining. The closest I come to needing the 20 amp is if I have to make a few long blacks in row and even then it is no heart ache.

I know it is hard to go hacking on a new $2500 toy but I would do the no burn mod before I ever heated the machine up the first time. It was weeks before I put a the little rubber thing on mine and I never burned myself once, just use your tea towel to grab it.

Dudes you both need to plumb the thing even if only the supply side and you have to run the supply line along the counter rather than through it. I would say that about any E-61 in the hands of experienced guys like you two. Having the ability to manually control the pre-infusion is just another dimension that I love having. The fact that it is handy is just a bonus IMO.

Set that baby up and stick a pic in the shrine thread for us when you get it. :0)

Woody

 
Yes i have a reason for leaving SCG off my list, yes it is my opinion, yes it is subjective as opinions are by definition, no don't start a flame war because you disagree.
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germantownrob
Senior Member
germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,141
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 2:54pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

My kitchen has 4 20amp circuits powering the outlets, I just need to throw some switches to see which outlets are running what and which ones may be dedicated lines, so I got that going for me. Then you go into the family room which has all 9 outlets on the same circuit.

The PID stuff will all be new to me so thanks for the input on that, hopefully the instructions are well written.

Seems the no burn wands are the rage with the kids these days, everything seems to have them. I will find Johns post and just do that mod soon, I actually meant to ask Mary if there was a burn replacement but sounds to simple to take care of myself.

I wonder if the changes to the shell fixed the rubber sleeves? Guess I will find out, if not your advice will come in handy once again.
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germantownrob
Senior Member
germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,141
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 3:05pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

John I will be plumbing it in when I figure out the right spot. I need to gut my kitchen and start over, the builder and what must have been his brother in law electrician where a bit challenged to say the least with certain aspects of my home. What that translates into is even though I have a 13' x30' kitchen that has no flow or workable stations so anywhere an coffee station is set up makes it extremely difficult to prep foods for entertaining. Once I figure out the least intrusive spot for the Duetto I will plumb it and since it can be run off a tank I can still move the beast to the bar or outdoor kitchen when needed.

So John be honest, did you chuckle when you saw I bought the Duetto?
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jwoodyu
Senior Member
jwoodyu
Joined: 31 Dec 2010
Posts: 847
Location: Michigan
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Allex Duetto II
Grinder: Mazzer Major
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2013, 3:24pm
Subject: Re: Alex Duetto 3.0 on its way to me
 

germantownrob Said:

So John be honest, did you chuckle when you saw I bought the Duetto?

Posted January 10, 2013 link

Straight up ;) I promise never to say "I told you so" or anything of the sort. I would have been just about as geeked for you if it had been the Cimbali or and Elektra in all honesty. When a great machine finds it's way into experienced hands it always makes for good reading.

 
Yes i have a reason for leaving SCG off my list, yes it is my opinion, yes it is subjective as opinions are by definition, no don't start a flame war because you disagree.
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