1955 Gaggia Internazionale restore - Page 2

Equipment doesn't work? Troubleshooting? If you're handy, members can help.
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dmccallum

#11: Post by dmccallum »

Progressing with taps and fittings lately and found one the sight-glass glass spindles had jammed in the housing. These both worked well prior to going to the plate shop - it's possible the threads were affected by the chemical clean or it had taken a knock I hadn't noticed. Either way I couldn't get it out.
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Wound up sending it to a model-engineer I know who was able to remove it and refabricate a new spindle for me. I also got him to make a replacement for one of the steam tap spindles also and three tap gasket holders. This guy can do single-point thread cutting which is very useful as he can recreate just about anything. The steam tap spindle thread shown is M10.8x14tpi 55deg and the water-level spindle an M13x1.
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I'd also been trying to make a fitting to get both safety and anti-vac valves on top of the boiler and under the cup tray, space is very tight.
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Hadn't quite struck on the ideal solution so my friend was able to make the following fitting out of stock brass 25mm hex and 20mm square bar. The male thread has been made up to Gaggias M19x19TPI with a good length. It fits perfectly.
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I don't have the original wobbler weight and don't intend reinstating one for the time being.

The only thing preventing me from filling up the boiler now is a water inlet-tap which I which I am trying to source.
All for now.

Sansibar99

#12: Post by Sansibar99 »

Derek, your guy is a brass magician !!!
LMWDP #422

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dmccallum

#13: Post by dmccallum »

Have been able to get on with assembly lately. I had cleaned one of the feet up but needed to take the other off for its Autosol treatment. Like the rest of the machine, they're hefty and solid - 2.5mm brass sheet, 4mm steel plate and two 15mm brass bolts.
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All the taps reassembled and installed in the boiler ready for a pressure test.
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I do have the original mercury switch and have sourced replacement bellows for it. I don't actually have any experience with them although I note some feel they're better than the modern equivs. It's still in a box however and a thread for another time, for time being I've just hung a Sirai off the lid and run a new pipe.
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I then filled the boiler and let it sit at 1.3bar. I was delighted to find all taps and seals held just fine, but to my horror I found a pin-hole leak in the water inlet to boiler case weld. Fortunately this was tiny even under pressure so I chose to address it with the old Loctite 290 thread sealant trick.
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With the crack addressed I refilled and tested again and found the boiler takes 24hrs to drop from 1.3 to 1.0 bar, so pleased about that. I have used Molykote 111 on all gaskets and annealed the copper washers under the saftey-valve assembly and drain tray.
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Set up a temporary wiring arrangement (it's Hotwatt High Temp Wire 2.5mm between the PSTAT and elements), and we're ready to go!
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The boiler takes 35-40min to come up to 1.3bar with the two 1100W elements I installed. Underspecd a little in hindsight so I'll swap one out for a 1500W to make it 2600W total. Should bring it up to temp quicker.

As for the first shot, I couldn't have asked for more! I'll tinker with the group setup yet but that's pretty good.
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Gradually getting the remaining panels on. The lamp below is the original - it doesn't work, and I'll be looking to get a replacement made up. Its made by VoltArc (V50 Blue), who have since been acquired but I understand their product is still available.
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Yet to fabricate a drain tray, finish electrics, source a water inlet tap and handles, find a neon-tube light solution and get a number of bits re-chromed. I'm thrilled to have it running at last.
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Sansibar99

#14: Post by Sansibar99 »

Awesome !!!
LMWDP #422

jacferhog

#15: Post by jacferhog »

Looking good man - I'm on the cusp of finishing up my Gaggia as we speak. Is that a La Marzocco 121 Deg. C. thermostat fitted to the boiler? And is that wired on with a spring for tensioning? Im thinking of a similar arrangement on mine.

J.
LMWDP #452.

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dmccallum

#16: Post by dmccallum »

jacferhog wrote:Is that a La Marzocco 121 Deg. C. thermostat fitted to the boiler? And is that wired on with a spring for tensioning? Im thinking of a similar arrangement on mine.
J.
It is the La Mozocco although I thought it was 130degC (will check). Paul Pratt originally advised here on this part. It mounts nicely and it's also double pole which sets it apart from most others. I am just using a cheap spring and some coated garden wire.

Mark08859

#17: Post by Mark08859 »

What a fantastic thread! It appears she'll be a beauty once finished. To anyone in H-B land doing a restoration, know that I am officially jealous of your mechanical abilities and knowledge of where to go when it is something you can't do yourself. I can't even imagine the cost of restoring something like this. You guys are amazing!

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dmccallum

#18: Post by dmccallum »

Getting on with final cleanup of remaining panels. I really like the Inters panel work and build.
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The way the end panels fit on is clever. Both ends have a top & bottom trim that slides on to secure the end panels to the top and bottom panels, hiding the joins.
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The decorative end also covers the front trims joins and fasteners. It's a great bit of craftsmanship.
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Also installed a custom neon tube to replace the old one.
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The tube is powered by a low-voltage (990v) transformer which I'll make a mount for somewhere here. A PID indicated about 31degC sat here so hoping it'll be OK.
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And bingo! I could have gone for an LED option but you can't beat neon.
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If I didn't spend a lot of time in my basement just looking at the thing before, I sure do now.

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arcus
Supporter ♡

#19: Post by arcus »

Great work! I need something like that in my basement bar.

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cuppajoe

#20: Post by cuppajoe »

Nice progress. Especially like retaining neon for the lamp, the glow goes well with the original panel finishes. Looking forward to it's completion.

As stated, the operative word is craftsmanship, of the manufacturer and restorers such as yourself. Glad to see there's still some around.
David - LMWDP 448

My coffee wasn't strong enough to defend itself - Tom Waits