Conti Prestina Espresso Machine Restoration 101 (Completed and Indexed) - Page 4

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

#31: Post by RayJohns »

drgary wrote:You mean this?

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It belongs to our contractor. What would I use it for? (Total newbie question, but I'm allowed because I are one.)
An impact wrench and an air chisel might be pretty handy over there, right about now :-) They also make a nice scaler that's handy for cleaning up rust. A die grinder is also nice... especially with sanding wheels installed.

And then just in general, for blowing off parts

Ray

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drgary
Team HB

#32: Post by drgary »

Okay. Got it. The air compressor powers all these nifty tools.

If I had the total shop setup, what would I want to weld from what you see? :mrgreen:
Gary
LMWDP#308

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!

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RayJohns

#33: Post by RayJohns » replying to drgary »

It's just good to have a TIG welder handy at all times :-)

Ray

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drgary
Team HB

#34: Post by drgary »

I think I've got some more tools to acquire but don't think these will quite solve my chrome plating and powder coating needs. So here are some questions for forum members.

I've never dealt with people who do chrome plating and powder coating. How/how much do they usually charge? Am I likely to do better pricewise bringing them parts for both machines at once? The guys I'm talking to have zero social skills by phone and they want to see the parts in person to give a ballpark estimate.

I'm looking at plating about 6 flat panel pieces for the Maximatic and Prestina combined; also chrome plating a worn steam wand and maybe a Maximatic drip tray grate. The Prestina is chrome plated over brass. Correction: The shiny panels are stainless steel and aren't plated. The Maximatic is stainless steel, and I'm thinking of just polishing the steel and chroming the worn steam wand instead of going through a chrome plating dance.

I'm thinking of powder coating the frame pieces and a few panels for both machines and doing it in two different colors. Probably 6 to 8 pieces there.

And if anyone has good resources for this on the San Francisco Peninsula, that would be a real plus!
Gary
LMWDP#308

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!

Warrior372

#35: Post by Warrior372 »

Like anything, I am sure prices vary by region. Most powder coaters I have been to have a piece / price minimum and the one I used while living in Boise had a $70 dollar minimum. For the Conti I would say anything under $100 for the inner frame, side panels and top of the group housing would not be out of line, but again you are in San Fran so it may cost more. That price included both blasting and powder coating. The bigger the machine / pieces the more it will cost. Also, the company I used had the same cost regardless of color. The main difference is that they waited until they had enough pieces / requests of a certain color to fill the entire coating room. So if you want black you may see a 24 hour turn around and if you request red it may take a week or two. The first time I ever went to get a machine powder coated I actually went in assuming I would be spending several hundred dollars, so maybe that is why I was so accepting of what it actually did cost.

I also noticed that the more frequently I went in and got things powder coated the friendlier they become toward me. Paying cash for everything seemed to make them a little friendlier too.

I have never needed to get a machine re-chromed, I have been lucky in that area. From what I have seen you can expect to pay somewhere around $200-$300 per single group machine if you do everything from panels to group to tray redone. Obviously, again the larger the machine the more it will cost.

These are just ballpark prices from the Inland Northwest. Please report back with pricing in the San Fran area.

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drgary
Team HB

#36: Post by drgary »

Thanks, Michael. That gives me a starting point.

So ... I've started to tear down my Maximatic (Coffex) in parallel to the Prestina so I can simultaneously powder coat both and maybe batch chrome some parts too. Here's the thread to the Maximatic dis-assembly. Pasquini Livietta (Olympia Maximatic) restoration You'll see that I discovered a design flaw in my Canon EOS D60 camera. It acts like you're taking pictures when there's no memory card inserted!!! At least others have taken pix of the Maximatic innards and I took detailed notes of the teardown so far. (Later add: I've now taken pix of the current state of dis-assembly and posted them here: Pasquini Livietta (Olympia Maximatic) restoration )
Gary
LMWDP#308

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!

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orphanespresso

#37: Post by orphanespresso »

Hi Gary...you are sure making some progress on the Prestina project!
It seems that one of your biggest issues right now is stuck bolts and the breaking of same, since each one of these broken bolts is going to give you a big headache down the line, but you likely already knew that. I think that you need more heat to get these loose, since to remove a bolt with a Detroit wrench one has to get the bolt head more or less cherry red, but since you have broken a few and there are not a lot more left the next issue is getting the bolt studs out! The more patience I apply to a stuck bolt the fewer broken bolts I have. I once worked on a La Duchessa and with every part, irreplaceable part I might add, I sweated that I would break a thread or bolt and called on every bit of patience and presence of mind to just physically ramp the power to this mental point of being below the break it threshold and not go beyond until it was all apart. You know how long it took me to get that broken down!
I would look at that boiler plate and ask myself the question "WHY do I need to remove this part?" and if the answer is "cuz" then this may be enough but take, for example the steam and water valves. These can be rebuilt without removing them from the plate so there is not much of a reason to remove them but for completeness (and possibly another broken part).
As far as tools go, I am pretty tool heavy, full size abrasive blast cabinet, smaller soda blast cabinet, air compressor with 120 gallon tank, welders, oxy/acetylene, air impact tools, powder coat booth, on and on but for me, likely the best tool that I have, and this is in essence a hobbyist tool, is a Proxxon drremel type tool.
Proxxon makes model making and hobby type small format tools and the Proxxon dremel is a DC power tool with a transformer and about any and all bits that you can imagine. I constantly use the wire brushes for both inside and outside of threads and general tight spot cleaning. The tool and attachments are very high quality and the rotary accepts drill bits as well, and the bits are actually like milling cutters for getting in to drill again in tight spots.
I also have a Proxxon drill press, again, small for precise work. The cost of these tools is far less than equivalent quality large scale and I find them to be used much more than the big stationary tools. The Proxxon drill press can be carried in one hand and stored on a shelf. I have actually clamped the Proxxon drill press to a boiler just like you are working on and avoided a lot of hassle drilling out broken bolts and the like.
The big power tools are real macho and make one feel totally empowered but to get a good quality tool they are really expensive and the cheapies are almost more trouble than they are worth.
On the powder coat issue...yes, powder coating is a very good coat but many good rattle can jobs exist on frames...just use good paint.....when you turn any part of your resto over to someone else you get what they do and once that coat goes on it is tough to get it off but if you personally screw up some paint then a bit of sanding and reshoot can put it right...and it is just the frame after all and your maximatic was originally painted, not powder coated. Blasting off the rust on a frame is nice though, but there are other methods which are basically more labor intensive.
One last thing.....you can probably break that group loose with a simple putty knife or just whack it with your trusty mallet.

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drgary
Team HB

#38: Post by drgary »

Hi Doug,

And thanks for your kind and helpful words.

This is a learning project for me of course, and stuck bolts are a whole uncharted territory.

Patience ... yes. There's a zen to this and any habits of impatience fight that. My impatience has come from: 1) curiosity to take it apart and see how it works; 2) mistaken thoroughness to go through and clean and renew everything; 3) relying on discovering for myself rather than wait for more experienced folks like you to reply on those bolts; 4) time limitation -- I had the time there and then to get at those bolts and had carved out the time from a life of other responsibilities; 5) more TBD?

If there isn't one already, perhaps another thread could address the issue of stuck bolts and how one may methodically address them or decide not to. I have found another tool that might have helped on one of those bolts, a "super socket" set that has cams that grip the flats of a bolt head. I didn't know that some bolts can bring the whole end of the screw with them when they come off! How much heat is needed to get the part cherry red and what tool at minimum will address that?

Thank you so much for the Duchessa restoration, BTW. For others who don't know, Doug restored my Lady Duchessa and I'm now pulling tasty shots on her and learning to steam with a curved steam arm. When you've got time, Doug, (if ever these days -- you're in the "growth phase" of your business!) and can forward your pictures, I'll write up your restoration notes.

Nice suggestions on miniature tools that help these projects. I have a Dremel-like tool and may look into a drill press, which I assume helps with clamping and precise alignment.

Good pointer on the paint, too. I'll think about that with the Maximatic, but it may be easier to just send in the frame parts and have them done flat black. I'll probably leave the case on that as is and will treat for rust after posting actual pictures on that thread.
Gary
LMWDP#308

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!

Warrior372

#39: Post by Warrior372 »

Doug brings up a up an interesting conversation on paint versus powder coating. Most of the sites with comparisons posted happen to be powder coating sites . . . . so consider that when looking at the comparison. http://vanillagorillacoatingsystems.net ... ating.html . With that said, I think a lot of valid points were brought up.

Know that I have no affiliation with any powder coating company and no special interests. I am very partial to powder coating myself. I have experimented with both spray painting and powder coating of machines I have restored and have never had a bad experience with powder coating any piece of a machine. Doug brought up a great point with blasting and rust removal being a necessary step in the powder coating process. This eliminates the extremely tedious hand / machine sanding that would be necessary. The finish is much more resilient, less likely to chip, corrosive resistant and is just more durable. They have hundreds of varieties at most shops including metallic sparkly finishes, flat, gloss, etc. in almost any color. It is not all that expensive and although you do have to trust someone else to do some work on your machine, they are professional powder coaters and it is what they do all day. Most reputable shops would re-coat a piece if you are not satisfied.

With all that said, I am sure spray painting has it place and the above is just my personal opinion.

cafebmw

#40: Post by cafebmw »

hi gary,
west coast powder coating in south san francisco is great! they did the sandblasting and powdercoating on my gaggia orione. it came out great! and for a very fair price. turnaround time 2 weeks. i had also the frame of my gaggia esportasione, which i'm currently working, powdercoated. i picked it up 3 days after dropping it off.

to remove bolts and studs: heat! take a propane torch and heat the area surrounding the bolt. then put candle wax on the bolt. when it cools down the wax will be sucked into to micro fissures. that sometimes helps. otherwise you gotta drill out the old bolt, drill a nice clean hole and tap. difficult part is the exact centering of the drill bit.