Who knows what it'll do? If you hear a small BOOM from the direction of Texas you'll have your answer (kindly remember me with affection). Hopefully, it'll merely provide a more reliable & steady supply of steam for the Gaggia. A PID to permit an exact set point for the brew temp and a separate source for immediate & concurrent steaming... who needs the weight of a huge boiler & HX?
It sounds like an interesting idea. Do you plan to use the thermoblock for brewing and the boiler for steaming? The thermoblock could handle the brewing well, but might be limited as a source for steam.
The main concern with this mod might be the current drain, so you should put it on at least a dedicated 20A circuit. The Coffee is rated at 1425Watts to draw about 13A at 110V, and adding a thermoblock would push it quite a bit over 15A. You could also use a 220V supply and get away with less current drain (use the formula Watts=Volts x Amps).
I'm not familiar with the steam generator you are using but here are the first thoughts I had.
1-If you are direct plumbing then you can eliminate the reservoir to increase your working space. 2-With a second boiler for steam you are not forcing high pressure water through anything so you may not need pump pressure per se. Instead you could perhaps use a pstat to open a solenoid valve to let direct plumbed water under house pressure to bleed into the steam boiler to refill it. This would greatly simplify the overall plumbing/wiring of the setup.
I am very interested in a setup like this and whether it could work effectively. In theory 1100W should be sufficient to constantly heat 55° tap water to boiling at a constant rate to produce steam on demand. I have much more experience in engineering than espresso making on the other handso someone with first hand knowledge might want to comment.
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