RayTCoffeePro Senior Member Joined: 1 Jun 2014 Posts: 112 Location: For My Safety, Its Empty
Posted Tue Jun 3, 2014, 7:30pm Subject: Buying Advice Needed
Okay, This isn't for advice, It's actually for pinpointing a machine.
Heres my credentials
It's a semi auto with heat exchangers with one boiler and grouphead.
1.E61 Brew Group 2.1-2 liter reservoir 3.Highly Thermally Conductive Boiler 4.Temperature gauge for boiler 5.Vibratory Pump 6.Maybe just maybe a pressure gauge 7.Not so bulky 8.Very deep tray 9.3 Way Solenoid (Almost called for everytime if you hate waiting between shots)
Only true passion and expertise will make the best coffee.
Heres my credentials It's a semi auto with heat exchangers with one boiler and grouphead. -- E61 Brew Group -- 1-2 liter reservoir -- Highly Thermally Conductive Boiler -- Temperature gauge for boiler -- Vibratory Pump -- Maybe just maybe a pressure gauge -- Not so bulky -- Very deep tray -- 3 Way Solenoid (Almost called for everytime if you hate waiting between shots)
Perhaps you didn't mean "credentials," but rather, "here is what I am looking for in a machine"??? Hmmmmm . . . .
Questions/Comments . . . .
a) The E61 group is an excellent design, but it's also 50+ years old. Why are you wedded to that (versus a newer) design?
b) Why do you prefer a vibe pump, rather than rotary?
c) A three-way solenoid has little to do with any sort of waiting time between shots. What causes any type of waiting time as to do with waiting for an SBDU machine to heat up/cool down in between pulling a shot, steaming milk, and pulling a shot again. There is no such waiting time with an HX or DB machine. A three-way solenoid leaves you with a dry/drier puck, and avoids the dreaded "portafilter sneeze" which sends wet grounds all over the place, rather than -- and here is the wait time -- waiting for the machine to cool down prior to removing the portafilter. If you need to make back-to-back shots that quickly, it seems to me you are talking about a commercial environment rather than a home environment, and perhaps you need a two-group machine . . .
d) What is your budget for this machine? And what are you using for a grinder? (Without a decent grinder, the machine is useless.)
Or . . .
Let's take it from the top . . .
Standard Questions: 1) What kind of drinks do you like/want to make? (This will tell us what you need in terms of a machine's capabilities.) 2) How many drinks, on average, do you see yourself needing to make at ay one time? (This will tell us what you need in terms of a machine's ability to work continuously.) 3) How many drinks, on average, do you see yourself making in any given week? (This will tell us what you need in terms of a machine's durability.) 4) Can you plumb a machine directly into the water supply, or do you want/need a pourover machine with its own reservoir? 5) Do you have a 20-amp circuit available, or only a (standard) 15-amp circuit? 6) What is your budget for a new machine? Does that also include a grinder? If not, what is your budget for a grinder?
So you're looking for an HX for $1500 or so- quite a few to chose from really. I would check out the Quick Mill Anita, the Faema Carisma, Bezzera BZ07, La Nuova Era Cuadra. All would be pretty good machines in your price range, and you wouldn't find much difference in the features. Popular vendors around these parts include Chris' Coffee, 1st Line Equipment, and Whole Latte Love. You'll find a fair amount of info on most of these machines here if you do a search- at least a couple have threads dedicated to them.
There's a bunch of E-61 HXs clustered at around $1500. Almost all of them are "Compact," which means they're narrow. Most are full featured. In addition to Faema, La Nuova, and Quickmill, you should look at offerings from Bezzera, Expobar, Izzo, Pasquini, Rocket and Vibiemme. I don't think there's an ECM in your price range.
I "added" Bezzera even though the BZ07 was already suggested. The BZ07 is a fine machine, but it is not an E-61 although styled in such a way that it looks like one. Bezzerra HXs designated with an alphanumeric name use one of Bezzera's two proprietary groups. Bezzera's named with a word, like "Magica," have an E-61. By the way, the Bezzera BZ10 is a much better machine than the BZ07, and -- at about the same price -- is well within your price range. The Bezzera Magica, which is an E-61, is also a very good machine for around $1600.
Any compact HX in the $1500 range will have far more in common with similarly priced compact HXs than differences. Within that price range, all have vibratory pumps. I don't think that any of them stand out as much better or worse than any of the others, although, typically you get a little extra build quality and finish at the high end of the range.
As a rule, rotary pumps are more, not less, reliable than vibratory pumps. They are also more expensive.
When you wrote "2 group," I think you meant "double-boiler." In any case, neither design is more nor less susceptible to pf sneezing than a 1group HX.
The E-61 is a good group. It is not a great group. It is not the only good group. The E-61 is fairly stable, but not a standout in that respect. Rather, it's outstanding feature is "passive pre-infusion."
No compact E-61 HX comes with a temperature gauge. Single gauge machines show boiler pressure. Double gauge machines show boiler and pump pressure. If you want an E-61 thermometer, you can buy one separately from EricS.
Boiler pressure can be used to infer the temperature within the boiler, but that's not much help when it comes to guessing water temp. You need to learn to use the "water dance" aka "cooling flush" to temp the brew water to whatever's appropriate for your coffee.
If you have questions about a specific machine or the differences between two or three you should come back here. If you're not specific or if you ask about too many machines, you won't get a detailed or coherent answer.
Based on what you've written, it seems you have a lot of basic misconceptions. Ask lots of questions and we'll try and clear them up as when they appear.
and where I replied, "A three-way solenoid leaves you with a dry/drier puck . . . rather than -- and here is the wait time -- waiting for the machine to cool down prior to removing the portafilter. If you need to make back-to-back shots that quickly, it seems to me you are talking about a commercial environment rather than a home environment, and perhaps you need a two-group machine . . . "
I don't think the OP needs a two-group, mind you, but . . . . ;^)
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