Olympia Cremina SL or retrofit?

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Nirooo

#1: Post by Nirooo »

I've owned several E61s, and am now playing with a microcimbali I'm modding and am really enjoying the spring lever type of machine (albeit that specific machine is incapable of steaming). I want something a bit more capable (for both shots and steaming) but want to keep the form and weight factor on the small side. I really like simple old style machines, so am increasingly interested in the Cremina SL (don't love the PV Export, would love to hear of other ideas for smallish/lightish spring lever machines).

I see two issues - one is that it feels disproportionately expensive. The other is that post 2017 machines seem to have some annoying EU energy efficiency thing that shuts it off after some idle time. I like to leave my machine on all day so can't have that. I'm based in Europe btw.

I like the idea of buying a used slightly older Cremina and retrofitting it with the new SL group (should be available by end of this year)

Two questions:
1. How possible/easy is it to disable the energy savings feature in a new machine? In case I decide or have to go new.
2. What do you think of the idea to retrofit a Cremina with the SL group? What would the minimal model year have to be for the SL group to fit? Any guesses for how much a group will cost?

Thanks!
N.

pcdawson

#2: Post by pcdawson »

I've been looking into purchasing an SL. I've been told that the EU shut off feature is not on the models being shipped to North America. Given the high demand and limited stock for SL's it might be a while before Olympia begins selling just groups for retrofits. So I'd just by the whole unit if you want one sooner than later.

Pete

ajs

#3: Post by ajs »

1. How possible/easy is it to disable the energy savings feature in a new machine? In case I decide or have to go new.
My understanding is that the new switch was one of the production changes[1] made to both Cremina and Cremina SL when production resumed after the summer break in 2020. It has a simple 60-minute timer inside the switch itself: it automatically "clicks" off after being on for 60 minutes. The appropriate EU directive specifies that coffee machines with a cup warmer need to turn off after 60 minutes of user inactivity. The Cremina [SL] is too simple to detect user activity, so it's from the moment you turn it on.

The EU directive only specifies that machines need to leave the factory configured this way; end users are allowed to change it. The non-timer switch is available as a spare part, and easy to swap in. For reference the new switch has a red/orange lamp, the old (non-timer) switch is green.

Hope this helps,

- ajs

[1] The drip tray has also changed slightly.

User avatar
sonnylowe

#4: Post by sonnylowe »

Nirooo wrote:
2. What do you think of the idea to retrofit a Cremina with the SL group? What would the minimal model year have to be for the SL group to fit? Any guesses for how much a group will cost?

Thanks!
N.
I think a retrofit of an older "new gen" Cremina is the best of both worlds, you get your manual lever as well as a spring lever. If you decide you prefer one over the other simply sell whatever group you don't want.

The SL group only fits the 2002 and newer model of the Cremina, this is due to a slight boiler design change. As Olympia is currently utilizing all the SL Groups for complete machines, it could be some time before the SL groups are available. However, I f you purchase a new SL and decide later that you want to try a standard group they are readily available @ $749.99.

As far as the cost of the new SL group, based on the retail difference of $200.00 between the Cremina and the SL, I would guess the group may have a similar price difference. If so, that puts it around $949.99.

As far as the 1 hour auto shut off, that is not installed on the US market machines.
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