What is a high quality LOW MAINTENANCE espresso machine? - Page 4

Recommendations for espresso equipment buyers and upgraders.
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BaristaBoy E61

#31: Post by BaristaBoy E61 »

maxrahder wrote:I used to have a Silvia, but gave it to some friends 10 years ago. Guess what? It's still working great, with very few issues over the years. I figure the difference is in the complexity of the machine. There's not that much to a Silvia, whereas a E61 machine is more like servicing your own motorcycle.
Any machine will need some servicing from time to time. The E61 is like a motorcycle of the 60's with a 60's carburetor. The 'engine' is exposed and you hardly need more than a screwdriver and wrench to easily effect most repairs and maintenance.

It's worth the tradeoff for great espresso (IMO).
"You didn't buy an Espresso Machine - You bought a Chemistry Set!"

mrjag

#32: Post by mrjag »

I don't own one, but the La Pavoni Lever espresso machine comes to mind as a high quality, low maintenance machine. They seem to be built like tanks and maintain their value even after decades. The design is also fairly simple so less parts to break or wear down over time. Best of all, the owners love the taste.

ojt

#33: Post by ojt »

mrjag wrote:They seem to be built like tanks and maintain their value even after decades.
If you mean the manual levers I have to disagree on 1) keeping their value and 2) built like tanks.

Many buy these things used and if I was to get one now I'd get it used. So easy to work on, simple and proven. Other reason to buy used is because they cost much less used.

Other than that I do agree. Very easy to maintain, works like a charm if you like the rituals, flow profiling out of the box :), and so forth. Good water is key though, as mentioned before, and that will hold true for any machine.
Osku

Nonprophet

#34: Post by Nonprophet »

mrjag wrote:I don't own one, but the La Pavoni Lever espresso machine comes to mind as a high quality, low maintenance machine. They seem to be built like tanks and maintain their value even after decades. The design is also fairly simple so less parts to break or wear down over time. Best of all, the owners love the taste.

I really loved my La Pavoni, but they certainly have their limitations. Temp surfing/keeping the grouphead a consistent temp is a challenge. Lastly, the OP stated that he makes a lot of milk drinks and needs good steaming capabilities, and the La Pavonis really falter in this area--especially if you're making more than one latte, etc.

I miss the classic design of my La Pavoni and the small footprint on my countertop, but I don't miss wide temp fluctuations and poor steaming capabilities....
"Chop your own wood--it will warm you twice."

LMWDP #522

pcrussell50

#35: Post by pcrussell50 »

I have two Pavonis to go with my temp stable machine. True about the heat stability thing. But they're always good for two before they get too hot. And for 99/100 that's enough.

-Peter
LMWDP #553

bettysnephew

#36: Post by bettysnephew »

I would say a Bosco Sorrento would qualify on all counts. High quality basic components, reliability to the max as there is very little to break or wear and hand craftsmanship to add old world like charm to boot.
Suffering from EAS (Espresso Acquisition Syndrome)
LMWDP #586

mrjag

#37: Post by mrjag »

ojt wrote:If you mean the manual levers I have to disagree on 1) keeping their value and 2) built like tanks.

Many buy these things used and if I was to get one now I'd get it used. So easy to work on, simple and proven. Other reason to buy used is because they cost much less used.

Other than that I do agree. Very easy to maintain, works like a charm if you like the rituals, flow profiling out of the box :), and so forth. Good water is key though, as mentioned before, and that will hold true for any machine.
At one point I was pricing one out to use at my office and it seemed like ~$1300 (new) for what I wanted, but $900-2000 depending on the exact model. The used ones didn't seem to be that much less unless you were willing to go the restoration route. For example, I saw one recently sell for $800 in the Buy/Sell section that was from the 70's and in good condition.

I wasn't aware about the trouble in the steam department -- sounds like that would be a deal breaker for the OP (and me).

ojt

#38: Post by ojt »

Yeah well with the one hole tip it's quite Ok, but I make lattes one at the time. Am in no hurry. The millennium models do solve most of the temperature issues as far as I know, and I have one of those. But yeah, maybe it isn't for everyone :)
Osku

pcrussell50

#39: Post by pcrussell50 » replying to ojt »

This is true about the Millennium. But the pre millennium is still good for about two shots. And how often do you need more than that? I have both models and I almost never use my Millennium. While it does a better job of staying there afterwards, I find it harder to get it up to the right temperature for my one shot.

-Peter
LMWDP #553

ojt

#40: Post by ojt » replying to pcrussell50 »

Hmm, I haven't had issues. I pretty much only use light roast so I can keep it hot. With a few "dry pumps" the machine is hot in no time. I think all Pavoni generations have their technique and tricks, which they do still need and for some is a deal-breaker
Osku