Unboxing the Bosco Sorrento

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IamOiman

Postby IamOiman » Aug 07, 2019, 3:00 pm

After 13 months of waiting after placing my initial order, my Bosco Sorrento finally arrived. As I partially type this out it is currently warming up for the first time without issue besides a slight leak from the manual water knob (if anyone has a suggestion on how to fix that please tell me!).
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A quick recall of how I ended up here today. I lived in Italy for just over five years, where I got into espresso, and due to that I was able to obtain espresso machines for prices that far undercut those in the US. This included purchasing the Bosco, which I got without paying for distributor and shipping costs, the latter occurring due to my affiliation with the US military, which pays for a move. I purchased two machines prior, a La Pavoni Professional and Elektra Micro Casa a Leva that I heavily used in sophomore and junior year in college in New England, and for my senior year I intend to bring the Bosco to my dorm, to the delight of my roommates (in terms of security for the machine I fully trust my roommates and the campus security for my dorm for anyone concerned).

The full story up to now can be found in prior threads of considering the purchase then follow up results
Considering Purchasing a 1 Group Bosco Sorrento
Construction of a Bosco Sorrento

My Bosco is a 110V one group Sorrento with orange panelling and wooden knobs/handles as add ons

Now to the fun part and namesake for the thread: the unboxing.

The crate my Bosco was held in is quite durable and well built. There are 12 screws each holding the top cover and part that connects the upper wall to the secured bottom pallet. The machine is protected first by layers of inch thick styrofoam followed by bubble wrap. Finally there is cellophane wrapped around the machine that also secures the box containing the accessories for the machine. In the machine itself all removable panels (drip tray, grill for drip tray, and cup holder) had pieces of bubble wrap placed to prevent scratches from wobbling during transport.
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The accessories I received are:
    -1 single portafilter
    -1 double portafilter
    -1 ⅜" threaded cable for the inlet
    -1 ½" wired tube for the drain
    -1 instruction manual in English
    -1 58mm tamper with the Bosco insignia etched on the metal tamp
    -1 tamper holder in wood
    -1 Lever with wood handle
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I unboxed it the prior night because I wanted to check if there was a plug already inserted for the machine as all commercial machines I have purchased do NOT include a plug. Just a wire with stripped ends for placing a plug. This did occur, but fortunately today the electrician was stopping by to install some outlets for me dedicated for the machine. The machine uses a Nema 5-20p adaptor and is plugged into a GFCI Nema 5-20 outlet.
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I purchased a lightly used Flojet 5000 from a fellow HB user, and I hooked it up with a T-connection with a valve for when I wanted to drop the pressure in the hose line. You will need a ¼" to ⅜" John-Guest to BSP connector at the minimum if you do not do anything beyond using what is provided with the Flojet and Bosco. Otherwise I utilized ⅜" tubing using a provided adaptor.

Once the outlet and plug were installed I plugged the Flojet first to utilize the manual water knob. It was only when I saw water on the sight glass that I plugged in the Bosco. Once it is turned on the automatic water level will activate and finish filling the boiler. From heat up it will take over an hour, maybe 90 minutes, before you can attempt pulling a shot. I gauged it by feeling the handle of the lever to see if it was warm to the touch.

I had a temporary setup to check if there were any leaks from the inlet tubes but so far besides the manual knob everything is ship shape so far.

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The pressurestat was set pretty high initially, at 1.5 bar. I adjusted it down to 1.1 bar for a starting point. Just of note there is a small yellow plug where you would adjust the pressure. YOU NEED TO REMOVE IT TO ACCESS THIS SLOT. A related issue is my manual water knob will leak where the plastic knob and thread joint meet. I am trying to figure out how to fix it but no dice so far. It leaks more when the pressure is higher or when the pressure is increasing.

For my first shot, I loaded up 14g of Saka Gran Bar on the same grind setting used for my Elektra. I tamped, locked in the portafilter, and pulled. The result: SOUR NASTY SHOTS. In reality it took my until my fourth shot to produce something great, which I think is not bad considering I have never used the machine prior! The final result is 1 'step' from zero on my Lido E and 16g of coffee. I will probably be able to tweak it more but the shot quality produces something that already exceeds my home levers in flavor. The notes are more defining, dominated by vanilla and nuts followed by chocolate and a bit of caramel. These notes are what I expect from my shots and am basically in coffee nirvana right now after six shots of espresso. It will take some time. This is where I am currently at up to now. Totally worth it.
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-Ryan
I'll throw my portafilter in the ring
LMWDP #612

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IamOiman

Postby IamOiman » Aug 07, 2019, 7:33 pm

Some more photos on the technical side, first with a better image of the machine. The tag shows a manufacture number of 589. I believe they reset the manufacturing number when they switched to the modern CMA groups in 2011 but do not know for certain. Being almost 9 years from then this is pretty close to reported 60 machines produced per year at their workshop.
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Taking off the back and rear panel assembly you can more clearly see the inside. As I requested Attilio (black writing) and Giorgio (orange writing) signed the boiler. They went beyond that and also signed my instruction booklet and some pamphlets, and I am grateful they fulfilled this request as I believe what they sculpt is art. You can also see the various connections to the steam wand/hot water and other parts like the safety valve and vacuum breaker. The one capped hole would be where the steam heater would be connected if I added that option since it is not included with the 1 group model.

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The left side facing from the front has the sirai pressurestat and heating element neatly nestled among the zip-tied wiring. They did a great job with the cable management and is very easy to follow. The auto water fill device is on the right side. Note the heating element appears to be actually screwed in based off the large hex I see on it. This is the first of that type I have seen rather than being bolted on.

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Looking beneath the drip tray from left to right is the electrical switch to power on the machine, the drainage cup, and finally the manual fill knob. Under the drainage cup is a nut that can be loosened if you wish to reposition/turn where the connection to the drainage hose is located. The knob will slightly leak when the heating element is on and the boiler pressure is beyond 0.8 bar (roughly 25ml every two hours). I will wait and see if it solves itself before taking more action. If you look at the first image in this post you can see an espresso cup to catch the dripping water which I emptied every 3-4 hours while it was on. Overall I am extremely pleased so far and hope to use it for years to come!

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Finally here is a comparison of the Bosco with my Pavoni on the cup holder :D
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-Ryan
I'll throw my portafilter in the ring
LMWDP #612

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BaristaBoy E61

Postby BaristaBoy E61 » Aug 07, 2019, 8:15 pm

Just gorgeous!

Thanks for sharing. Wishing you many happy, healthy years of enjoying espresso and stories of coffee and adventures with friends and family.

Good Luck!
"You didn't buy an Espresso Machine - You bought a Chemistry Set!"

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JohnB.
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Postby JohnB. » Aug 07, 2019, 9:13 pm

So the water is dripping out right behind the black knob? That's an odd one & would seem to indicate an internal seal issue in the valve. I'd contact Roberta & see what she has to say.
LMWDP 267

EddyQ

Postby EddyQ » Aug 07, 2019, 9:40 pm

Thanks for sharing your journey Ryan. I'd love to replace my Pavoni with a Bosco.

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IamOiman

Postby IamOiman » Aug 07, 2019, 9:43 pm

It is quite odd. I emailed her directly but Ferragosto is upon us so I have no idea when I will hear from her. At the latest it will be 31 of August. When turned off or low pressure the leak will stop so it is nothing life threating right now. The good news is the leak is so small it will not impede regular operation but I will not keep it on 24/7 or while I am gone for more than an hour until this issue is resolved.
-Ryan
I'll throw my portafilter in the ring
LMWDP #612

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Balthazar_B

Postby Balthazar_B » Aug 07, 2019, 10:56 pm

Ryan, nice machine, no?

One suggestion: Find a nice silicone mat you can place on the top of the machine, if you plan on storing glassware there (unless you intend to use something like a microfiber towel). Over time, ceramics will scratch the steel and piss you off. I found a nice mat with perforations that fit well after I trimmed off one end (no steam warmer on my machine, but I figured the perforations would provide a bit better cup warming from the radiated heat).

Your dorm room will certainly become a very popular hang-out destination. :mrgreen:
- John

LMWDP # 577

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IamOiman

Postby IamOiman » Aug 08, 2019, 6:57 am

Balthazar_B wrote:Ryan, nice machine, no?

One suggestion: Find a nice silicone mat you can place on the top of the machine...Over time, ceramics will scratch the steel and piss you off.

Your dorm room will certainly become a very popular hang-out destination. :mrgreen:


Figured that would likely happen. Fortunately we have some rolls already as all of the lining used in the kitchecn shelves magically disappeared and we are replacing them. I think I can 'borrow' a small sheet for that purpose!

My rommates are madlads for allow me to lug this into the dorm!
-Ryan
I'll throw my portafilter in the ring
LMWDP #612

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IamOiman

Postby IamOiman » Aug 08, 2019, 7:51 am

The dripping haas definitely lessened. It is about half the rate it was originally, and after two hours about 7mL of water has fallen into the cup. Most of it occured at startup when I first turned it on for the morning and the flojet activated. I am still doing a wait and see method to hopefully have it solve itself...
-Ryan
I'll throw my portafilter in the ring
LMWDP #612

bettysnephew

Postby bettysnephew » Aug 08, 2019, 9:36 am

I also had a very small amount of weapage when I first started mine up but it disappeared in a couple of days. If I recall it was from the vacuum breaker atop the boiler. That was replaced with one that has a fitting for silicon tubing and empties into the cup beneath the drip tray. Thanks to JohnB for recommending this upgrade along with several others.

Perhaps the funky tasting first shots were due to some residual small amount of water left in the boiler from testing. After filling my boiler and heating up I pulled the lever down and purged a couple of good sized pans of water to clear out any that may have been left over from their check out. Didn't want to get Montezuma's Revenge from foreign water although the boiling process should have eliminated that possibility. :shock:

FWIW, my Sorrento shows as being built 12/17 and is serial number 552. It sounds as if your rate of build calculation is quite close to real production figures.

Glad to hear you are getting your machine up and running!
Suffering from EAS (Espresso Acquisition Syndrome)
LMWDP #586