LMWDP Rollcall - Page 241

A haven dedicated to manual espresso machine aficionados.

#2401: Post by Cuprajake »

theres nothing between them bar the materials they choose to build from, the boilers are stainless A316l in the evo

so will argue for and against, but in reality your going to own either for decades


#2402: Post by philosli »

I have been drinking espresso in the last 20 years or so. It started as a way to get caffeine without heart burns. Then things get escalated quickly in the past 2 months. So here I'm: just becoming a proud owner of ACS Vesuvius Evo Leva:

Coming from a single-builder heat-exchanger E61 machine (VBM Domobar Super), I am very happy to finally have more precise control over the brewing temperature and pressure. On the other hand, if a shot goes bad, it's totally on me.
LMWDP #741


#2403: Post by poison »

Gorgeous machine there! How's the espresso, compared to the VBM?


#2404: Post by Snowbeard »

Greetings from the Northwest Territories, Canada. Can I please join the LMWDP?

I'd like to thank the members of this great site for all the incredible information that is available, and that is so generously given by so many. You open up the doors for everyone else!

By way of introduction, my espresso habit began via a handful of Saeco Aroma's. My "gateway" lever machine, in 2018, was a Millennium La Pavoni Europiccola. Soon it wasn't enough. I needed more brass, better pins and rollers and some other stuff (you know the story). I also started reading about how others had restored vintage Pavoni's (how these might actually be better than new), and stories about "Back Alley Finds" and "Amazing 1st Generation Europiccolas". I was hooked. I came to consider the words of drgary, rpavlis, the Garrott's, Francesco Ceccarelli and others with nothing short of awe. I started to question myself. How is it that I'm just stumbling upon vintage lever espresso machines now? Where have I been?

I felt haunted. Could I do it? Do I dare try? Could I...fix up an old La Pavoni myself? I had doubts: living in a condominium, having a wife unfond of noise and dust, not being particularly handy, and having a tool kit that fits within a plastic bucket. Surely I'll get bogged down somewhere...maybe multiple times. And who likes to look foolish?

But, I'm happy to say, I managed to pull it off! Two 1st Generation Pavoni's were provided with new seals and gaskets, and rewired using 14AWG gauge, having ON/OFF switches added and grounding the units. The one on the left is a 1970-1973, version 1.5 (with the shower screen attached). This was outfitted with Stefano's 200W/1000W heating element and thermostat. The one on the right is a 1973 version 1.6 with 220 volt elements. It's slow to heat up of course but it works well once I adapted to its time schedule. This was good to learn on (I didn't really learn much on the Millennium!) since the stages are slowed down. People talk about how the build quality of Pavoni's has gone down. I did notice this. The 1973 is much better built than the Millennium (no surprise). However, what did surprise me is that the 1970 is sturdier and bigger than the 1973. The reduction in quality can even be noticed between the v1.5 and the v.1.6! I'll close by mentioning where I did get bogged down in my restorations: Getting the heating element flange for the Stefano's element onto those fine threads on the boiler. Impossible for me to do. I resorted to the assistance of a local machine shop and haven't looked back. Thanks!

User avatar
Team HB

#2405: Post by drgary »


Nicely done! I'm glad I had a role in having you consider first gen Europiccolas. BTW, where have you noticed reduced quality within the first gens? I see the features improving without degrading quality until version 1.8, when La Pavoni switched from a cast aluminum base to a cast steel one.

BTW, I was using my 1964 Europiccola just this morning.

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!


#2406: Post by Snowbeard »

Hi drgary. I just finished the "restorations" (both were in pretty good initial condition) on Friday and this morning I'm about to fire up the v.1.5 for its initial run. Wish me luck! In any event, no matter how it goes, I know from earlier comments of yours, Francesco and others that any problem will lay on the handle side of the espresso process and may just need to be worked on! Anyway, to answer your question, the v.1.5 (1968 to 1970) Europiccola that I have is a bit larger than the v.1.6 (1970 to 1973) Europiccola as far as several individual parts are concerned by just a slight amount, just enough to notice. I had the machines side by side and came to this conclusion. Or is it just my imagination? Could it really be that there's more than just the removable/non removable shower screen as a difference between these models? Could it be that the 1st Generation models were sized slightly larger than the 2nd Generation models? And, that the v1.5 model is sized like a 1st Generation while the v1.6 is sized like a 2nd Generation? Any further input is welcomed as I haven't seen this mentioned previously, don't own a 2nd Generation model, and my comments were subjective of course.

User avatar
Team HB

#2407: Post by drgary »

I think the only things that changed in most V1 versions was the addition of features. For instance, after the base got a drip tray, it wouldn't pay to create a new casting. What else has changed? If you have measurements that show such changes with photos, it would be good to start another thread on that topic and link it to this one so people will find it. I don't think there were such changes, though. Francesco Ceccarelli has catalogued La Pavoni changes in other models, like the early Professional, where boiler size and shape did change. I would have to look over his site again, but I don't remember such an observation with the Europiccola. To stay on topic, this thread is a good place to sign up for LMWDP and show what brought you here.

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!


#2408: Post by Snowbeard »

Just a quick reply, drgary. I don't want to mess up a perfectly good thread!

I thought that the v1.5 Europiccola "felt" a bit sturdier in the hand, perhaps just the slightest bit firmer (less "give") than the v1.6.
Anecdotal evidence I admit. Just a feeling. I don't have photos with proper measurements. However, I did get out my trusty ruler.

It appears to me that my v1.5 and v1.6 are different in 4 ways:

a) the obvious difference with regard to the shower screen being removable or not,
b) the drip tray on my v1.5 is .5cm deeper than the drip tray on my v1.6. Therefore I'm assuming different castings for the base. Or is the drip tray just a separate piece plunked into the same old base casting?
c) the drip grate is different. Aluminum and square holes versus steel with round holes,
d) at least a couple of parts are slightly bigger on my v1.5. The top of the yoke is about 2mm wider. Also, the outside diameter of the group head also appears to be about 2mm wider. Maybe these differences are inconsequential. Just differences well within production tolerances. Or, maybe I just managed to get a really nice example with extra chrome?

I don't believe that I've seen any comments regarding any reduction in quality during the life of the 1st Generation Europiccola. I thought it might be an interesting point to hear more on as these were my observations. Feel free to move this comment somewhere else if it doesn't fit here, or even start a new thread if you see any value. In any event, I'm glad to join the club! Thanks for all you do!