EMI Consul Restore

A haven dedicated to manual espresso machine aficionados.
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dmccallum

#1: Post by dmccallum »

Hi there,
I've recently finished a restore on an EMI Consul (1963) which we don't see too many of and so I'm sharing a few pics.
It had sat in my workshop for some time and only over the last year have I got round to doing something about it. I'd long thought it was an ugly duckling but after all the time it's soaked up I've come round to it.

I've seen it mentioned that EMI were an Italian company run by the brother in law of Faema's founder (Carlo Valente) who had a license to use Faema designs. Enrico Maltoni suggests in his book that EMI was a short-lived subsidiary of Faema that produced machines and bar furniture. A search on EMI turns up very little.

The bodywork seems a little less fancy than a regular Faema but take the cabinet off and you wouldn't know the difference.

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I had to improve on the 1500W element I initially installed, taking 30min to come up to temp. A 2400W element brought it back 15min.

The corrosion on the lower cabinet front facing panel was a bit advanced and I couldn't do much about it. I've yet to find a suitable aluminum sheet product and go through the anodising & folding etc..

The main/fiddly challenges were dealing with all the aluminum parts and the corrosion they'd accumulated, and also refabricating the plastic bezel and logo.

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The machine came to me with only half the plastic bezel that held the EMI name plate. It's quite a complex shape but fortunately I had what I needed to complete the piece. You should give silicon moulding/plastic resin casting a go if you haven't already. First, I've taken a mould and created two copies of the original piece and put them together using epoxy putty. Wet sand it to desired shape and then remould and cast final piece. Final step is to put a bit of 800grit wet paper over it and then a wheel with plastic polishing compound to bring up a shine.

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keepitsimple

#2: Post by keepitsimple »

I don't think it's an ugly duckling at all - just so much of its time, and you've done a great job on it.

I'm assuming it's nothing to do with the other EMI ? They were a very diverse organisation at one time, including developing and marketing the first CAT scanning machines, and they sold percolators and lots of other household appliances under the HMV brand (as well as records 8) )

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TomC
Team HB

#3: Post by TomC »

This is incredible! Well done! How are you liking its shots?

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Paul_Pratt

#4: Post by Paul_Pratt »

Wow what a machine, a piece of Faema history and pretty rare. You did a great job on that plastic bezel, I bet that was fun to do.

I think I've only seen 2 1group EMI machines in the past several years, good find.

Paul

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rotchitos

#5: Post by rotchitos »

very very nice machine, very very nice restauration, very very jealous
http://machines.cafeslevier.free.fr/
I look for persons to translate into English one or + pages of my site... :-)

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zeb

#6: Post by zeb »

I love it, and I love the job you did on it ;)

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drgary
Team HB

#7: Post by drgary »

dmccallum wrote: You should give silicon moulding/plastic resin casting a go if you haven't already. First, I've taken a mould and created two copies of the original piece and put them together using epoxy putty.
Nice technique and beautiful EMI machine. Can you show us the specific materials you use for silicon moulding and plastic resin casting please?
Gary
LMWDP#308

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!

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dmccallum

#8: Post by dmccallum »

I don't believe EMI had anything to do with the global EMI brand. Faema closed it down in 1967 according to Enrico Maltoni.

As for the plastic moulding,
To make the moulds Polycraft GP-3481-F General Purpose RTV Silicone Mould Making Rubber and I used Polytek EasyFlo 60 Polyurethane Liquid Plastic Casting Resin for the casting with Polytek pigments to color. Milliput expoxy putty for filling.
There's a big range of products out there, Polycraft & Polytek appear to be available globally. What's made it more accessible nowadays is products with thin viscosity that eliminate the need to degass mixtures in a vacuum chamber. With the right products you can just mix and pour.
In reality there are a few tricks to it and you really need to research the market to learn about the range of products and how to (or not) use them and determine the right mix of products for what you want to do. YouTube 'plastic casting' & 'silicon moulding' and you'll learn a lot. Try to make your first project a low cost one as there's every chance you'll 'learn a thing or two' with your initial investment. Polytek in particular have a very good YouTube channel.

One thing I have found very useful to make replacement hard rubber feet and stoppers is a product called Sugru (sugru.com). It's a little pricey given the quantity but very convenient and makes a hard rubber product that comes premixed and sticks to anything. Great for that replacement foot/grommet/seal that just isn't available anymore. I believe Polytek also do pourable rubbers in varying hardnesses.

http://www.polytek.com/

And some of my suppliers here in the UK,
http://www.easycomposites.co.uk
http://www.mbfg.co.uk/

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drgary
Team HB

#9: Post by drgary »

Thanks for that detail, Derek.

I can see restoring some rarity like this in the future and looking up your method.

I'm also looking into the history of EMI to see if I can add a bit about that.
Gary
LMWDP#308

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!