Got this mexican-made lever machine, any thoughts? - Page 2

A haven dedicated to manual espresso machine aficionados.

#11: Post by Pressino »

boren wrote:I didn't say it's Ponte Vecchio Lusso, but that it seems inspired by it. You really don't see the similarity?
Ok, I get it the point...but there are also several other machines that have the same general Bauplan and "look." The off-center group placement, however, is a fairly large design difference. That's the only point I wanted to make.

Jmalpica (original poster)

#12: Post by Jmalpica (original poster) »

Marmot wrote:Yes, you are right about the carimali group! It seems Carimali (and Schärf) used this kind of group but I'm afraid there are no spare parts anymore.

The Ponte Vecchio uses a very classic looking group design. It was the same as on Sama machines before. Those home machines got their design from large commercial units like this one.
And for example, regarding the unavailability of finding new spare parts for this kind of group, what do you suggest?? Maybe changing the group to another, more new (or with available partas) one?? Or maybe selling the machine and getting another one???

Thanks in advance by the way


#13: Post by Marmot »

I would wait until you get it and then try to find out who made it. The user in the german forum manufactured missing parts himself. Maybe this machine "only" needs new gaskets. Sometimes you can use gaskets from another manufacturer or cut them yourself.

Jmalpica (original poster)

#14: Post by Jmalpica (original poster) » replying to Marmot »

It just arrived (in pretty bad shape due to the shipping guys, can't swear here) and I can't really tell anything about this group head, shower, gasket, etc.

User avatar
Team HB

#15: Post by IamOiman »

Ah nuts that is unfortunate. Make a list of the damages and hopefully each part can be fixed without too much hassle. What specifically was found to be damage?

The group is not like the normal Carimali group. The linked kaffee-netz thread has the Carimali group undeneath the group cover if you want to see the difference. I think a disassembly of the group is needed to see what the piston and rod assembly looks like. There is something written on the side of the group, that may also help you figure out the original of the grouphead.
Using a spice grinder violates the Geneva Convention
LMWDP #612

Jmalpica (original poster)

#16: Post by Jmalpica (original poster) » replying to IamOiman »

Yeah, I tried to find out what does it say but it is really impossible to tell. It looks like when shipping, they put some heavy stuff on it and the case was badly bent, also the front part, where the group is "sitting" is slightly bent to the front, so it is not perfectly square to the frame. Apparently all plumbing is OK and after plugging it, I had no leaks whatsoever but water came really cloudy (they had this machine abandoned for two years, since the beginning of this covid sh*t). As I will send it to deep service, I will dissassembly the group to see what the hell is inside there and what does it need. Also I'll have to buy a new portafilter and a good shower as it is also sh*t. Any suggestions???

Jmalpica (original poster)

#17: Post by Jmalpica (original poster) »

Got some pictures of the guts of the machine. Any thoughts???


#18: Post by Pressino »

Sloppy boiler welds, but otherwise looks robust.


#19: Post by LObin »

I'm noticing a few "anomalies" when it comes to the design of this machine...

1. The main one is how the group is fed. The group isn't attached to the boiler like most dipper machines but seemed to be fed from a single and rather small pipe (in diameter) attached to an elbow fitting up top of the boiler...

If it was an heat exchanger, there would normally be two pipes feeding the group called thermosiphon. One for the hot water going to the group and one for the cooled down water going back into the boiler, in a close or open loop.

So... It raises the question: How is it fed? What's underneath that elbow fitting? There has to be a pipe going down the boiler to draw water otherwise it would only supply steam to the group...

It has me wonder about warm up time and the possible need to flush before every pull. It's possible this group is made to idle at a low temperature while the pstat is set quite high.

2. Also, I'm wondering if there will be some flexing seeing how the group is bolted to the front of the machine.

3. How big is the machine? Is it commercial size? The pipes are on the small side if it's commercial. Doesn't mean it's an issue but rather unusual.

4. There seem to be a broken pipe or a weird plug on the left side of the boiler, at the lower end of a split T...?

5. I see a safety valve but no vacuum relief valve. You'd probably have to bleed of pressure every time you turn it on to avoid false pressure. This means that you can't put the machine on a timer. It's an easy fix though.

This is quite an intriguing machine... Once you have it up and running, I'd suggest monitoring the warm up time, idling group temperature and temp inside the portafilter.
Unless it pulls fantastic shots right off the gate!

Thanks for sharing your amazing and intriguing find with us!

LMWDP #592

User avatar
Supporter ♡

#20: Post by JohnB. »

That group feed line is certainly unusual. It looks to be a dipper but I don't recall ever seeing one where the feed came off the boiler & then ran down to the group. The idea is to transfer some heat from the boiler into the large brass group body while it's idle. As LObin stated that group would have to run cool.