Domestic Lever Group Flange Bolt Pattern

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mrb
Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 22, 2016, 2:46 pm

Postby mrb » Mar 23, 2016, 5:55 pm

Hello.

What is the distance between the center of the holes in the group mount flange for the Elektra Leva? How about the Cremina?--Ponte Vecchio?

Thanks for any replies.

mrb
Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 22, 2016, 2:46 pm

Postby mrb » Mar 24, 2016, 11:02 am

It would seem that Ponte Vecchio and the Elektra Leva use a similar spec, as per this: Elektra Microcasa a Leva temperature stability upgrade

Am I pretty close in estimating the distance between holes at around 35mm?

max
Posts: 241
Joined: Sep 06, 2015, 8:09 am

Postby max » Mar 24, 2016, 11:39 am

I have been wondering the same thing, and, as you point out, in the case of the Elektra and Zacconi groups it seems natural since SAMA used both (even before Elektra, if I read Francesco's site right).

Does anyone know about Olympia Cremina/Club?

This is my SAMA-branded machine on the inside:
Image

Now I'm just speculating, but to me it looks awfully similar to the Olympia Club (in particular the boiler to group connection, apart from the filling pipe) so perhaps they have some common origin, thus use the same mounting pattern?

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rpavlis
Posts: 1795
Joined: Jan 08, 2012, 3:26 pm

Postby rpavlis » Mar 24, 2016, 11:43 am

The Microcasa a Leva is very close to 35mm. If one wanted to measure it really accurately the thing to do would be to remove the group and measure the distance with a vernier caliper. Are you trying to make an insulating gasket of some kind? I thought of doing this, but I want something that is durable enough to hold up, because most of the time mine would be in a drawer waiting for the time when I make espresso for larger groups. When making small amounts of espresso one wants as much heat as fast as one can get it!!!

I obtained a piece of a polymer sometimes called Ultem. It is a very high performance polymer, but also is somewhat expensive. The piece I got was too thick. High temperature polymers, however, are usually easier to work than cheap thermoplastics that melt when cutting tools hit them, because their glass temperature are high. When you try to machine them pieces come off, rather than melt. Most people do not understand just how hot polymers get when they are being sawed or drilled. Depolymerisation can occur with many of them, and some of the monomers and other decomposition products are toxic, sometimes extremely so. This is particularly true of polytetrafluoroethylene. Cut and machine these materials in an area with good ventilation.

mrb
Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 22, 2016, 2:46 pm

Postby mrb » Mar 24, 2016, 1:55 pm

This is my SAMA-branded machine on the inside:
Image

Nice boiler max. I like the asbestos insulation.

Does your thermosyphon group have threaded nipples;
Image

or, does it seal flush with the firewall like the Elektra group?
Image

What portafilter do you use on this machine?

mrb
Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 22, 2016, 2:46 pm

Postby mrb » Mar 24, 2016, 1:58 pm

rpavlis wrote:The Microcasa a Leva is very close to 35mm.


rpavlis, Thanks for the approximate measurement.

rpavlis wrote:Depolymerisation can occur with many of them, and some of the monomers and other decomposition products are toxic, sometimes extremely so.


Thanks for the warning about cutting PTFE. Did you polish the cut surface of the Ultem to prevent splinters?

I am working with a thermosyphon group and don't care to to reduce heat exchange at the group flange. I am considering the interchangeability of these groups with similar mounts.

max
Posts: 241
Joined: Sep 06, 2015, 8:09 am

Postby max » Mar 24, 2016, 4:07 pm

mrb wrote:Nice boiler max. I like the asbestos insulation.

Does your thermosyphon group have threaded nipples;

What portafilter do you use on this machine?


Up close it looks like there is not only asbestos, but also some cloth holding the asbestos together. I don't know much about asbestos so maybe that's common. I'm just happy it seems to be in good condition!

My machine doesn't have a thermosyphon. It has a Zacconi group visually identical to the SAMA/PV Export, but I haven't had the machine to examine further, i.e., 45mm baskets/portafilter.

I uploaded some pictures and comments in this post: Lever Espresso Machine Gallery (direct link to post)
Its precise origin is still somewhat of a mystery.

mrb
Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 22, 2016, 2:46 pm

Postby mrb » Mar 29, 2016, 10:55 pm

Image


max,

I recently came into a machine called "La Romana Automatica" similar to your club machine but haven't had a chance to fiddle with.

I have the same Zacconi shaped group but figured it was an earlier thermosyphon design. I think my machine was built in the early sixties.

Are you sure there is only one connection to your group? I haven't had the cowling off yet.

I am considering swapping the group with that of an Elektra Leva to have easier access for maintenance and easier sourcing of parts.

How is the coffee from your machine? Which Zacconi piston seals do you use? Do Ponte Vecchio baskets work?

The grouphead looks like a 49mm. The machine came with a portafilter that looks like it takes a 45mm basket, but no basket. I only pressurized her once and the pressure cutoff swing is between 1.3 and 1.4 kg/cm of mercury as per the gauge. This higher than usual boiler pressure is why I figured it uses a thermosyphon.

Thanks for any info.

Image
Image

max
Posts: 241
Joined: Sep 06, 2015, 8:09 am

Postby max » Mar 30, 2016, 7:02 am

mrb wrote:max,

I recently came into a machine called "La Romana Automatica" similar to your club machine but haven't had a chance to fiddle with.

I have the same Zacconi shaped group but figured it was an earlier thermosyphon design. I think my machine was built in the early sixties.

Are you sure there is only one connection to your group? I haven't had the cowling off yet.

I am considering swapping the group with that of an Elektra Leva to have easier access for maintenance and easier sourcing of parts.

How is the coffee from your machine? Which Zacconi piston seals do you use? Do Ponte Vecchio baskets work?

The grouphead looks like a 49mm. The machine came with a portafilter that looks like it takes a 45mm basket, but no basket. I only pressurized her once and the pressure cutoff swing is between 1.3 and 1.4 kg/cm of mercury as per the gauge. This higher than usual boiler pressure is why I figured it uses a thermosyphon.

Thanks for any info.



That certainly looks like the same machine. I think it only has one connection. I haven't taken it apart, but there is a photo posted on a German discussion board clearly showing one connection. Unfortunately I'm not allowed to post it here since it's not my picture.
Moreover, when taking off the case, there seems to only be one connection to the group.

As for the servicing, I'm hoping that this tool will be of use when it's time: Ponte Vecchio Lusso piston removal tool
Currently my group is in good condition so I won't open it up. Spare parts seem to be available. There is apparently a guy on ebay who has gaskets. I don't have the username here, but could check if you're interested.
My group is definitely a 45mm one. As far as I know the portafilters and baskets are the same as PV.

So far I've had a bit of trouble with the coffee. I believe most of it is caused by too low group temperatures (pressurestat set to maybe 1.1 to 1.2 bar). Other smaller issues are probably related to inexperience with this machine. I haven't had it for a long time at all so I'm still investigating.

Please keep us posted if you learn something new about it or make modifications.

mrb
Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 22, 2016, 2:46 pm

Postby mrb » Mar 31, 2016, 12:06 am

I will try the Ponte Vecchio basket. I plan to swap in a Elektra Leva group at some point, partly because I already have some matching portafilters and baskets. With the group and boiler mated to opposite sides of the firewall and not to each other, I suppose one could mount group heads with different bolt patterns with relatively little modification.

 
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