Am I broken or is the espresso machine?

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goodmonringcoffee

#1: Post by goodmonringcoffee »

Hello,

Newbie here. I am hoping to get some insight into a problem I seem to be having with my Espresso Machine: La Pavoni Grand Cafe, now I am very quickly understanding that this wasn't the best buy but I got it as a gift and I am hoping to make it work. I would like to note that I have a Eureka Specialita and I am using fresh whole beans coffee is no older than 5 days with a non-pressurized Portafilter.

Problem: So far I have not been able to reach the appropriate 9-10 bar on the gauge extraction with a brew ratio of 1:2 in 25-30 Seconds. It is more like 10 seconds.
This wouldn't be much of a problem if I was able to get a proper brew ratio without serious channeling as the Pressure gauge goes to 15+ PSI to get the brew ratio of 1:2 in the 25-30 seconds.

A little extra info: when I turn on the water with nothing connected the gauge says 5 bars of pressure. I feel like that is a lot of pressure.

La Pavoni Tech told me to shorten the OPV spring in the group head, which I did but this hasn't changed anything.

Thoughts? IS the pressure gauge accurate when it reads 15 bars or is it really just 10-11?

Thank you for your input!

JRising

#2: Post by JRising »

Where is the gauge reading thepressure?
If it shows 5 bar when you KNOW that the brewhead is open to atmosphere, then it's reading from before some serious restrictions, giving you no info about the pressure drop across your coffee. If it reads 15 when the machine is producing excellent coffee, assume that 15 bar at wherever the pump reads is a good reading. It's certainly not hurting anything. The gauge may just be ornamental on something like a La Pavoni Grand Cafe.

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Nunas
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#3: Post by Nunas »

goodmonringcoffee wrote:<snip> Problem: So far I have not been able to reach the appropriate 9-10 bar on the gauge extraction with a brew ratio of 1:2 in 25-30 Seconds. It is more like 10 seconds. This wouldn't be much of a problem if I was able to get a proper brew ratio without serious channeling as the Pressure gauge goes to 15+ PSI to get the brew ratio of 1:2 in the 25-30 seconds.
I presume this machine uses a vibe pump. They make ~15-bar of pressure. The OPV bleeds off pressure above its set point, usually ~9-bar. Some are adjustable, some not. It should never read 15-bar. You're doing the right thing, though. Too fast a shot is generally a grinding problem (too coarse).
A little extra info: when I turn on the water with nothing connected the Guarge says 5 bars of pressure. I feel like that is a lot of pressure.
By 'nothing connected' do you mean no portafilter, or do you mean a portafilter and basket with no coffee? If the former, then this does indeed sound odd. The pressure would normally be very low. If the latter, then does your machine use pressurized baskets (false bottom with a tiny pinhole for the coffee to exit)? If this is the case, then you'd see pressure...can't say how much.
La Pavoni Tech told me to shorten the OPV spring in the group head, which I did but this hasn't changed anything. Thoughts? IS the pressure gauge accurate when it reads 15 bars or is it really just 10-11? <snip>!
This does not sound right to me. On the adjustable OPVs, compressing the spring makes the pressure go up, not down.

That's all I've got, as I've no experience with this machine.

goodmonringcoffee (original poster)

#4: Post by goodmonringcoffee (original poster) »

JRising wrote:Where is the gauge reading thepressure?
If it shows 5 bar when you KNOW that the brewhead is open to atmosphere, then it's reading from before some serious restrictions, giving you no info about the pressure drop across your coffee. If it reads 15 when the machine is producing excellent coffee, assume that 15 bar at wherever the pump reads is a good reading. It's certainly not hurting anything. The gauge may just be ornamental on something like a La Pavoni Grand Cafe.

Thanks for the reply. I believe what you are saying to be true.

Cheers,