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La Peppina, the amazing countertop irrigator

Postby pacificmanitou on Fri May 18, 2012 7:49 pm

Ive come into possession of a la Peppina in great condition, except for the fact the previous owner has never heard of descaling or cleaning in general. After making the machine clean enough to drink from, I noticed the group drips steadily out of the dispersion screen, regardless of the position the lever is in. What could be causing this, I'm assuming seals or gaskets, but which one? I'm not familiar with the machine, having just got it, and would prefer not to test each one.
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Postby samgiles on Fri May 18, 2012 10:02 pm

You're probably going to want to replace all of the seals but the one that is most likely causing the group to leak is a rubber washer that acts as a one way valve in the grouphead behind the dispersion screen. If it's not seated properly or the screw in the middle is too tight or too loose, water will get past it. Also, if the washer is old it may have hardened up and cupped a little which would also allow water past.
Have a look at the rebuild guide on the OE site. It looks daunting but with some patience, it's not too hard;
http://www.orphanespresso.com/LA-PEPPINA-Espresso-Machine-Rebuild_ep_540-1.html
There are some notes about seating that washer correctly at the bottom of the page.
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Postby yakster on Sat May 19, 2012 4:35 am

I agree that it's the flapper valve washers; there's one inside the cylinder under the heater that lets water into the cylinder and prevents back flow into the kettle and one under the dispersion screen that allows water to flow out of the group but seals in the other direction to keep air from being drawn into the group so that when you pull the lever down you draw water into the cylinder.

Be very careful removing the dispersion screen screws if they are original, they strip easily, it's worth getting the OE rebuild kit for these metric screws and the gaskets. I ended up having to drill out one broken screw and re-tap the hole.
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Postby pacificmanitou on Sat May 19, 2012 5:52 am

eek, that sounds unpleasant. I ended up taking the whole thing apart, and I found enough sand to make a beach. Im assuming (read: hoping) that this is just horrid scale. Also, whoever had this last took it apart incorrectly and left a crack in the base next to where the stem for the boiler begins. Should I think about bonding it with something or is there enough tensile strength left to be ok? Anyway, it was a combination of filthy seals and the re-construction seating the boiler unit a 1/4" higher than it should be that caused the leaking. I sterilized the innards and replaced the boiler correctly and its holding better. Should probably order that kit from OE anyway though, Im almost assured to need it from what I understand.
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Postby yakster on Sat May 19, 2012 9:58 am

pacificmanitou wrote:Also, whoever had this last took it apart incorrectly and left a crack in the base next to where the stem for the boiler begins. Should I think about bonding it with something or is there enough tensile strength left to be ok?


A picture of the damage would help here.
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Postby pacificmanitou on Mon May 21, 2012 4:41 am

Hm, I'm quite new to this forum thing, how do I go about posting photos? The crack doesn't appear to be growing in size any, but with it being so near the spring Id like it to be secure. Could I use some type of liquid epoxy to repair it? JB weld or something similar perhaps?
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