La Pavoni Europiccola- Stuck Grouphead Sleeve

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Bristil

#1: Post by Bristil »

Hi,

I picked up a post mil Europiccola and have just one more repair, and I want to use it!

The sleeve in the group head is stuck, like really stuck.

I purchased a removal tool to ensure I do not tear it up trying to get it out. I am going to replace it with a brass one and I am also going to use a brass piston.

Before I attempt this I thought I would see if anyone had any suggestions for how I may be able to loosen it a bit first.

Thanks!
John

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Kaffee Bitte

#2: Post by Kaffee Bitte »

Take the group and put it in your freezer for ten minutes or so. This will shrink the plastic sleeve a little and should make getting it out easier.
I have had to do the same with one that broke right below the oring.
Lynn G.
LMWDP # 110
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Bristil (original poster)

#3: Post by Bristil (original poster) »

thank you!! I really appreciate the help. I will definitely do that.

JeffNYC

#4: Post by JeffNYC »

I had to Dremel out mine. It had some scaling on the threads which prevented easy removal. Be sure to line up the hole in the new sleeve with the boiler tube! It took me some time to figure that out as I wasn't getting the same flow when lifting the lever.
Gaggia Factory, Cunill El Tranquilo

ojt

#5: Post by ojt »

+1 on the freezer trick, helped me also.

As for lining up the hole, I would suggest trying to get it on the other side of the boiler, so 180° from the boiler / neck. Water should enter the brew chamber as the water inside the groupdhead is pressurized. If the water isn't entering the brew chamber it is likely that the hole never gets opened, ie. the piston doesn't go high enough to uncover it. In this case I would make sure the piston is completely screwed in to the shaft, and that the lever is correctly mounted. You can also turn the sleeve back a little to lower the inlet hole position.

The supposed advantage of having the inlet hole on the barista side of the grouphead is that you get more of the cooled down water and less straight from the boiler.
Osku

jtrops

#6: Post by jtrops »

To piggyback on what OJT said...

These sleeves should be designed so that when they are full threaded into the group the hole is in the correct position and the seal is seated.

JeffNYC

#7: Post by JeffNYC »

Interesting...maybe I didn't have the piston going over the inlet hole before. I did screw in the piston a bit more into the piston rod, so maybe that was what solved my issue (as opposed to the hole not aligning with the boiler tube)? When I go in again to change gaskets, I may try to turn the sleeve so the inlet is facing the front to pick up water further from the boiler.
Gaggia Factory, Cunill El Tranquilo

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Kaffee Bitte

#8: Post by Kaffee Bitte »

jtrops wrote:To piggyback on what OJT said...

These sleeves should be designed so that when they are full threaded into the group the hole is in the correct position and the seal is seated.
"Should" is rarely what you get. I have two stainless piston sleeves in mine. Both line up off to one side instead. The plastic sleeves usually line up close to the water inlet but sometimes on the opposite side of the group.

I was told by Stephano that the proper position for the sleeve is to turn it in til it stops. You could try having it lower but it may interfere with the shower screen and portafilter locking. It may also leak way before it wears out if the oring is on the threads instead of the little groove between them.
Lynn G.
LMWDP # 110
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Bristil (original poster)

#9: Post by Bristil (original poster) »

I had to dremmel it out. Took me a while since I had to get the right tools. Fortunately the threads in the GH are fine. It is replaced with a brass sleeve and brass piston. Working fine and espresso is good but I think I need to test pressure.

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Kaffee Bitte

#10: Post by Kaffee Bitte »

The brass sleeve is going to change the feel and feedback a bit. The stainless version sure did for me. It will also effect your temp surfing a little, though not sure how with the brass instead of stainless.
Lynn G.
LMWDP # 110
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