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Brown flakes coming out of the steam wand -Rancilio Silvia
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Tcampbells
Senior Member
Tcampbells
Joined: 3 Jan 2008
Posts: 101
Location: Taiwan
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia / Stove top...
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky / Solis 166
Vac Pot: Hario 3 cup Siphon
Drip: Braun 4 Cup classic
Roaster: My local Organic coffee...
Posted Thu Mar 13, 2008, 8:51pm
Subject: Re: Brown flakes coming out of the steam wand -Rancilio Silvia
 

The flakes came back today. 4 more ones about the same size as was pictured.

I have come to the conclusion that it isn't milk. Maybe I am right and maybe I am wrong. In the month plus that I have been using it, the wand tip has never been lower then 1 cm into the milk. If that is the case then there would have only been one CM of areas for the milk to build up. I have been very good at cleaning the wand the second I stop steaming, flip on the hot water switch and running hot water through the wand until boiler light come on (that is a lot of water and should have cleaned out the wand.

That said, even if the past user sunk the wand the full 3 inches into the milk (up to the curve of the wand (and never cleaned it - though unlikely from the look of the machine when it arrived - spotless - and the fact that the seller roasts his own coffee and has about 6 different kinds of coffee machines as seems to know about coffee). But providing that he did not clean it, that would still give very little surface area for milk film to form.(and would have resulted in a low water flow rate with the wand being clogged - which is not the case).

Saying all that, I have run about 20+ tanks of water through the wand, descaled it 2 times and I am still getting these rubbery thin flakes (for lack of a better word). So I can't figure what is happening. I assume it isn't the teflon problem from the post by Mark Prince, and that the Silvias did not have a teflon lined boiler just the Rialtos. So I can not think of another cause. Is there something else in the sivia that would be along he steam wand line that could be breaking down and coming out (since it doesn't come out of the group head). Suggestions welcomed.
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mauijer
Senior Member
mauijer
Joined: 10 Mar 2012
Posts: 28
Location: I'm a Nomad, today I'm in Ohio
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: QM Silvano
Grinder: Baratza Vario W
Drip: Chemex
Posted Sun Mar 31, 2013, 6:36pm
Subject: Re: Brown flakes coming out of the steam wand -Rancilio Silvia
 

Did you ever find out the answer to this? My espresso machine just started doing this too (I have a Starbucks Barista Athena). Started shooting out large brown flakes from the steam wand yesterday. I was going to descale it for the same thought process you had but i think maybe its something else. I would appreciate if anyone here can identify the flakes or source of the problem. Do I need to disassemble my machine? Replace the Steamwand? Or do I need to worry about something bigger, like the boiler?
Thanks in advance. Pics look exactly the same as what's already been posted so I wont add mine.
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