This is my Linea story. It's just beginning and I want to thank everyone here for all the informative posts. If it wasn't for those of you who have done a Linea refurb before, I would never have thought I could do it too.
After years of frequenting *$s and finally deciding there had to be something better, I started visiting the few coffee shops we have here in Salt Lake City that might possibly have something of higher quality and better taste. There are a few good shops downtown, but none of them are easy to get to on a regular basis if you don't live near them. I also was in grave need of a new hobby for the sake of my sanity.
So, I went to the internet to learn more and I happened upon this great website frequented by coffee lovers and filled with so much information I couldn't get enough. It felt like I finally found a home for my drive to find the best caffeine buzz. I devoured everything on this site until I was ravenous to sink my teeth into my own machine.
I started by reading everything I could about Silvia. I read that she was the first machine most people buy who are getting into making their own espresso. Then I read that she could be temperamental. And about PID and Silvia and how it was her own form of Prozac. But the more I read, the more I decided I wasn't the kind of person to temperature surf. So, I set my sights higher and sold off a bunch of stuff I wasn't using so I could skip ahead.
I saw so many beautiful machines. I think all the shiny chrome of the Alex Duetto is beautiful. I read the great review posted from the UK. I thought about the exposed group and all that shiny chrome and the ability to plumb or fill the tank manually. I thought about the Vivaldi, but there isn't much in terms of style. I know Vivaldi is a very popular machine and after watching Chris' video I learned what a solid performer it was. But I was most impressed by the two boiler machine. The more I read the more I decided I wanted two boilers.
But again, I wanted more. To experience life is to enjoy the adventure of reaching a destination. The vistas from the top are always inspiring, but the learning that takes place along the way is what often matters most. Besides, I wanted this to be an adventure.
I started reading about Paul P's, Paul G's and other Linea overhauls. Now that looked like fun. I've rebuilt cars and had other similar projects, this could be the new hobby I was looking for! The detailed rebuilds that have been posted in the past taught me about the quality that goes into a La Marzocco espresso machine. There may be more beautiful machines, and there may be more advanced machines but 100 pounds of stainless steel must have something going them. And our kitchen has a commercial Traulsen fridge in it already so the boxy steel lines of a Linea would fit in just fine. I learned that one group Lineas are hard to come by. But I figured, I would wait it out. Then, I saw a post for a machine on the website of one of our local newspapers. A one group Linea with EverPure filter system included. Recently refurbished, it said. I made some inquiries and found the machine was in Moab and came from a bike shop. I'm not a very good deal maker so when the owner offered to drive it from Moab to SLC, I was hooked.
I know my 1990 A.1 works but I could tell it needed a good cleaning. The group gasket was fused into a solid mass of rubber and the portafilters were black with old coffee. The kids and I set it up and played with the steam wand practicing our soapy water latte foam before I shut it down and we started taking the Linea apart. I've taken quite a few pictures of the teardown and will post them very soon--have to make the file size smaler. For now, here's two. I have a couple questions already and hope to learn more from everyone here. Thanks for reading and thanks for inspiring!