Found an old Gaggia OWC. Realized parts are missing later. Is it still usable? - Page 2

Equipment doesn't work? Troubleshooting? If you're handy, members can help.
ak14 (original poster)

#11: Post by ak14 (original poster) »

It appears to be leaking around the front of the boiler. The leaked water is warm.

ak14 (original poster)

#12: Post by ak14 (original poster) »

Just thought I'd give a quick update. I removed the boiler and it looks pretty badly cracked in the front! Vid of the leak in action:

So, seeing as I'm certainly not replacing the boiler, does that mean the entire thing is toast?




SJM

#13: Post by SJM »

Probably but not necessarily.
From the video it looks to me as if it's leaking at the seam between the upper and lower parts of the boiler, right?

If you're still game, the next thing to do would be to see if you can get the top and bottom parts of the boiler apart.
It may be that the broken wing there is remediable and that a new gasket (which you would probably have to make yourself) would cure the leak between the boiler parts. Permatex used to make a food safe (NSF) high temp gasket maker; I think they don't anymore, but someone (maybe Dow) probably does.

That machine is in rough shape.
Whether or not going forward is going to reward you is hard to predict; I wouldn't put money on it; on the other hand, success would be very sweet.

Edit: If I remember correctly, those allen bolts that hold the boiler together are 5mm

Another Edit: Never underestimate what you might find inside an OWC boiler:

User avatar
JR_Germantown

#14: Post by JR_Germantown »

Susan, did you see this?


Jack

SJM

#15: Post by SJM »

I did, but I don't think those bolt wings are connected to the inside where the water is ?
So I figured if the boiler could be taken apart, maybe that wing could also be repaired enough ?

I'm guessing you think I'm overly optimistic ?
Wouldn't be the first time.

It's sort of why I thought taking the boiler apart would clarify how critical the break there is.

User avatar
JR_Germantown

#16: Post by JR_Germantown »

I'm pretty certain it would leak badly with only three screws holding it together.

I guess if someone wanted to spend enough money and time fixing it, it's possible. I had a friend with the right equipment and skills to weld aluminum, but there aren't many around.

Jack

SJM

#17: Post by SJM »

JR_Germantown wrote:I'm pretty certain it would leak badly with only three screws holding it together.
Agreed.
JR_Germantown wrote:I guess if someone wanted to spend enough money and time fixing it, it's possible. I had a friend with the right equipment and skills to weld aluminum, but there aren't many around.

Jack
So, probably the OP should cut his losses and look elsewhere for espresso nirvana, right?
Okay, I guess I'm on board with that.

ak14 (original poster)

#18: Post by ak14 (original poster) »

I popped it open, the gasket was actually in good shape. Inside was corroded and gross, but I cleaned that up just for fun. Think it is indeed the cracked boiler :(

JRising
Team HB

#19: Post by JRising »

You can't really use it without replacing the boiler, but you could go throw it at the person who took your $50 for it.

ak14 (original poster)

#20: Post by ak14 (original poster) »

Hahaha!

I don't think she realized it was busted, and it was worth it just to take it apart and learn a little bit about how espresso machines work. Thanks everyone for the help!