Faema Eurostar Ambassador Rebuild and Mod Journey - Page 5

Equipment doesn't work? Troubleshooting? If you're handy, members can help.
JRising
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#41: Post by JRising »

strikeraj wrote: Questions:
1. How do I remove the pump from the housing? It is on two rubber L brackets, that are mounted to the housing with those plastic push pins. Do I just pull hard or is there a smarter way to take it out? (The other side of the push pin is in an awkward location, couldnt really fit a pair of pliers in to press on it)
2. How do I test the heating element to make sure it is not shorted to ground? Do i just need to submerge it in water and test continuity between either pole and the water??
3. If the brass upper and lower housing flanges are warped, what is the best way to straighten them?
Pull the silicon hose off the inlet and push the pump out of the rubber at that end. Disconnect the hose from the elbow at the outlet and slide the pump out of the rubber.

Yep. If it is badly shorted to ground, any multimeter will be able to find continuity.
BUT Just because a little multimeter with a 9V battery says "open circuit" isn't absolute proof that applying 120VAC to the filament won't find a path to ground.

If they're not so badly warped that they leak, you might want to just leave them, or you might want to press the 2 halves of the boiler together with the o-ring and middle pipe removed to see if they become a flatter surface. Truly, you don't want to stress them further. It sounds like you've got a machine that's been frozen (boiler warped, pipe broken etc.) I would suggest scrapping the damaged boiler. The previous owner should not have sold it to you like that (assuming the freeze happened before you had it).

strikeraj (original poster)
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#42: Post by strikeraj (original poster) »

JRising wrote:Possibly the machine is brewing below 94C. Be sure the portafilter is fully warmed in the group before filling the basket with your coffee prep. And if you start your brew immediately after the element light has gone out (that's when the boiler water is hottest) is it still brewing sour?
Yea I was already preheating for 30 minutes and brew when lights goes out, still turns out sour
Then I was doing the temp surfing by switching on steam for 10 seconds before I hit brew, it became very tasty. I hope using the PID later on will make this more consistent.

strikeraj (original poster)
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#43: Post by strikeraj (original poster) »

JRising wrote:Pull the silicon hose off the inlet and push the pump out of the rubber at that end. Disconnect the hose from the elbow at the outlet and slide the pump out of the rubber.

Yep. If it is badly shorted to ground, any multimeter will be able to find continuity.
BUT Just because a little multimeter with a 9V battery says "open circuit" isn't absolute proof that applying 120VAC to the filament won't find a path to ground.

If they're not so badly warped that they leak, you might want to just leave them, or you might want to press the 2 halves of the boiler together with the o-ring and middle pipe removed to see if they become a flatter surface. Truly, you don't want to stress them further. It sounds like you've got a machine that's been frozen (boiler warped, pipe broken etc.) I would suggest scrapping the damaged boiler. The previous owner should not have sold it to you like that (assuming the freeze happened before you had it).
Thanks for your reply! May be instead of checking continuity I will check resistance level. That may be a better indication.

For the boiler, may be I will just keep it aside and not use it. I guess if I am taking care of the boiler I have now, I should not need to replace that. Will just need to replace the centerpipe and element when they go. Looking at this one though, I have a feeling that everytime the centerpipe gets taken apart, it has a very high chance of breaking at the thread at the bottom. May be I should find a couple spares just in case lol

coyote-1
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Joined: 2 years ago

#44: Post by coyote-1 »

Wow. Thanks to strikeraj for the original post, and to all who are assisting in this project! I'm becoming hooked on the process of restoring/updating these older machines.

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baldheadracing
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#45: Post by baldheadracing »

strikeraj wrote: 1. This old version does not even have a dispersion plate! it was 4 hole at the bottom of the boiler going straight into shower screen! (That was one piece I was thinking I may be able to salvage lol)
2. Not sure what the last owner did but the boiler flanges are warped, and the 4 bolts are slightly bent (still manage to pull it apart)
The shower screen should work okay, though.

The warped boiler flanges are almost certainly damage from frozen water from the machine being stored in an unheated space like a shed or garage. On the plus side, the brass in these old machines is relatively soft. (On the minus side, it is lead in the brass that makes the brass soft ...). As long as there are no cracks, you may be able to gently hammer the boiler flanges back into their original shape. I've done it. I know "gently hammer" sounds contradictory, but if you hammer too hard, the brass will crack. Once the brass cracks or if the brass already has a crack, then it is game over and you throw the boiler out.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada

strikeraj (original poster)
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#46: Post by strikeraj (original poster) »

And.... a repair post is not complete without an obligated bottomless shot...

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baldheadracing
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#47: Post by baldheadracing »

Must be satisfying having espresso now! 8)
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada

strikeraj (original poster)
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#48: Post by strikeraj (original poster) replying to baldheadracing »

ABSOLUTELY!

strikeraj (original poster)
Posts: 87
Joined: 1 year ago

#49: Post by strikeraj (original poster) »

So today.... I changed the steam thermostat from 125 to 140 (Sorry @JRising... cant resist the temptation... and safety trip is at 165 so I think at least I wont blow the boiler up :P)

and that.... makes a huge difference in steaming.... Going from burrr hssss nothing..... to.... Good swirl the whole time until milk is proper temp!
(I am only steaming 8 oz at a time)

strikeraj (original poster)
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#50: Post by strikeraj (original poster) »

so.... bought an Ascaso basket.... and it does not fit out of the box... The ID of the ascaso basket is a smidge smaller than the OD of the brass group head....

Ended up needing to sand down the OD of the group a bit to fit LOL
But then, my tamp is also a tad too big... apparently it was not a 57.00mm tamp lol.....