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Thread: BO-EMA two group from the scrap yard.

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    SPH
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    BO-EMA two group from the scrap yard.

    Hi folks. I've joined up in search of some info and to share my experiences with this boema two group machine I picked up at the local scrap recyclers.

    Here it sits.


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    SPH
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    I've had a bit of a crash course in espresso machines over the last few days. Lots of great info on coffesnobs.

    First things first. Does it power up? Yes it does. Powers on and makes noise. Power off straight away. I didn't want to run it without water.
    Ok, quick trip to Reece plumbing for a 3/8" adapter and a flex hose. Now with a garden hose into the shed I connected up the water and powered it back on.

    Wait fifteen minutes. It gets hot. That's great! So far it powers on, holds water and heats up. And dribbles water out the anti-vac valve. Huh. Back to the internet (to learn what that valve is called).

    Ok, gushing vacuum valve, probably a scaled up fill probe. Pull the fitting and inspect the probe. Yep, sure enough. Scaled up to the very top. De-scale on the wire wheel. Reinstall and drain water using the hot tap. Fills. Stops. Heats. Bubbles, fizzes, pops the valve shut. Steam from the steam wand!

    Nice.

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    SPH,
    Hello and welcome,nice catch there....so what's you first step?
    Mine would be to check its electrical integrity for safety sake ,check elements for correct resistance then confirm water in boiler.
    Once confirmed it's electrical safety (be thorough now) and operational heating elements including water in boiler.
    Plug it into ,probably 15amp supply ,switch it on and see what happens!
    I always do another check with a multimeter to confirm the chassis isn't alive,although that would have been confirmed with an isolation test I suppose,I'm just crazy about electrical safety when working on anything with mains supplies running them.
    Whats your plans and what condition it in?
    cheers,
    Mick.

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    SPH
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    Ok. So at this pint I figured I had something worth putting a few hours into. The pics above are as it sits now. When I first got it home it was filthy. I wish I knew which caffe it was from so I can avoid it.

    There was, best guess, milk scum everywhere. Even IN the gauges. I pulled the water pressure gauge apart to clean it but quickly realised that it was toast. The notched teeth on the drive are all rounded over. New one required. The steam gauge is ok.

    I didn't actually know what kind of pressure the boiler was supposed to hold but a bit of digging turned up measurements in the .8 to 1.2 bar range. The pressurestat (more google) is kicking the boiler on and off in something like the right range. Certainly good enough for trouble shooting.


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    SPH
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    BO-EMA two group from the scrap yard.

    I pulled one of the group heads because I was curious about the scale situation. There's what I would consider (as a total novice) a fair build up, especially at the junctions between copper line and brass head. I doubt this thing ever got back flushed, never mind de-scaled so that'll be on the to do list. I'll start with basic maintenance de-scale and go from there.

    Ok, theres more to come but I'll leave it at that for now.

    I have a few questions too.

    I don't have any portafilters. Does anyone sell them second hand on here? New from boema is an option of course.

    The machine is missing one steam wand. If I'm sourcing a replacement are there any that are better than others?

    I'm getting a fair bit of steam out of the hot water tap. I gather this probably isn't normal. Is it linked to fill level? I didn't have much to go on for the full probe height.

    I know I've basically just bombed in here and dumped this story on the floor. Hope no on minds.

    Cheers from Sam in Tas.


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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    I've just about finished restoring the single group version of this machine. If you're finding a fair bit of scale in places you'll probably find that there's lots more. The inside of my boiler looked like this -




    This what came out of it -




    So it could pay to open your boiler to inspect and prepare for a manual descale. Before doing so however one of the best indicators of the scale situation is the mushroom valve on top of the group heads. So open them up and see how they look.
    Most parts I've needed so far I've managed to get directly from Boema. They've been quite helpful and easy to deal with. Good luck.

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    SPH
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    BO-EMA two group from the scrap yard.

    [QUOTE=mulquemi;597933] ...it's electrical safety.[ /QUOTE]

    That's for sure. The chassis earth has been cut and I got a definite tingle from the right group head when it was running. I got the tingle from the solenoid body actually, the chassis isn't live. Must be the solenoid. It also tripped the breaker if left running for any amount of time so perhaps a leak. Left hand runs fine. I'll pull the right hand group head tomorrow night and disassemble the solenoid. It might be something simple but it's probably just a bin and replace job.

    Oh, it's a 2400w 10a element. I'm running it on a 15a supply but I don't think it's necessary.

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    SPH
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeroyC View Post
    The inside of my boiler looked like this
    Whoa, nasty. Most of my reading has been pointing to a boiler strip down and descale.

    What process did you follow to descale? Getting the boiler out doesn't bother me, just don't want to damage anything with the wrong chemical mix. CLR is clearly a big no no.

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    Citric acid will be fine. I have gotten rid of far worse.

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    SPH
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    Ok, thanks. Does citric acid have any effect on chrome or the (I presume) nickel coating on the boiler?

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    I'm in the process of restoring an Pavoni machine...took about two full days of soaking parts in citric acid to descale the boiler. All other parts I used a brass wire brush and some green scourer for internal. I'm having fun making up new copper pipes (NOT!!) but it's going OK. Bought a fair bit of parts on line (seals and valves...etc).

    Once you get the idea of how they work, they are actually quite simple so don't be scared to strip and clean.
    Have fun
    Bigjay

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    SPH,
    Sounds somewhat dodgy with both tripping and feeling some current when touching the chassis,check that out pronto first.
    The non working group may also be due to a blocked flowmeter,very small orifice and often blocks,simple open and check /clean then retest the group.
    Regards,
    Mick.
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    SPH
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    Thanks Mick. The group does actually work but seems to trip the circuit after ten seconds or so. I suspect a leak somewhere in the solenoid is putting water into the plug or something along those lines. I'll pull it tonight and investigate.
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    SPH
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    I disassembled that group solenoid last night. Gave everything a scrub and descale. Replace the two o rings with a couple I had in the workshop. They might not stand up to the pressure of actual use. We'll see. Regardless, once reassembled and up to pressure I could run both groups constantly with no odd behaviour. I tried testing with a multimeter in a few places and got nothing. I connected a chassis earth too.
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    SPH
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    I couldn't help myself. I wanted to see inside the boiler. Damn.


    Eh. I guess it's no big deal. Got plenty of citric acid here.

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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SPH View Post
    I couldn't help myself. I wanted to see inside the boiler. Damn.


    Eh. I guess it's no big deal. Got plenty of citric acid here.
    Yummy.


    Now the fun begins.

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    Mmmmmmmm.



    Shiny! Copper sure loves plating onto brass. The solenoid is nowhere near the acid, FYI.
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    I was given one of these yesterday although it's even simpler with no volumetric controls. Looks to be in good nick externally but i'll be following a similar procedure as you have done so far.

    It's so empty inside with no volumetrics. There's no flowmeters or wiring and a heap less pipes. Would be a good candidate for clear panels and internal lighting......
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    Hah, yeah, as I look at the machine I can see what you mean. There wouldn't be much in there without the volumetric stuff!

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    Solved a small mystery today. The right group solenoid has a cracked housing. Add a bit of water and viola. Short, tripped breaker. Ordered a new one already.

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    A litre of hydrochloric later... 5ltrs hot water to half a litre acid with one flush and refresh in the middle. I don't know if the flush was necessary but the reaction did seem to have stopped after about two hours.
    None the less, four hours had it looking very tidy.


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    SPH
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    Looks like the element didn't survive the descale. It's tripping the breaker if I connect it. Strange really. I pulled it out once I realised it was happening and connected it up on the bench, just to a power cord. Heated up straight away and didn't trip the circuit. I doubt it could be much else. Perhaps the scale was the only thing holding it together.
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    The element is shorting to the screw in housing. It'll heat but it going to be sending current to all kinds of places it shouldn't. New one.
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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SPH View Post
    A litre of hydrochloric later... 5ltrs hot water to half a litre acid with one flush and refresh in the middle. I don't know if the flush was necessary but the reaction did seem to have stopped after about two hours.
    None the less, four hours had it looking very tidy.

    Well done. At least you could get your boiler out to do the descale. Mine was stuck in place so I had to do it with the machine tipped on its side.

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    SPH
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    Yeah, that'd be no fun at all. Bad enough dealing with warm acid with the boiler out. In the machine would be a nightmare.

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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SPH View Post
    The element is shorting to the screw in housing. It'll heat but it going to be sending current to all kinds of places it shouldn't. New one.
    This is common apparently. The guys at Jetblack told me not to descale the element, as it might not work afterwards. I actually cleaned mine up by hand and haven't had a chance to test it yet. I'll be putting it all back together this week so fingers crossed.

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    BO-EMA two group from the scrap yard.

    Yeah, hindsight. I absolutely should have just left it alone. They're $60ish so not a big deal but all those little bits will still make this $40 machine into a $400 machine. At least I'll know it's good to go.

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    Machine is together and doing its thing. Picked up a Gino Rossi grinder this morning for $50 and will grab beans from the roasters tomorrow morning at the local market. Get some badly made coffee happening in the garage!
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    Aaaand picked up a Mazzer Major this afternoon. Ridiculous price. Also ridiculously large.
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    Following this post - - I had the same win today with a Boema 2 group for zero..... starts up, pump runs but RCD in the shed trips after the element starts heating - - takes about 10 seconds after element starts......

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    SPH - - - To pull the machine apart to the level you have - - do you have any kind of diagram ? im thinking of pulling mine down to the level you have - but a lot of it is riveted together....

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    Ready to make some coffee in the morning!
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    Quote Originally Posted by acdc View Post
    SPH - - - To pull the machine apart to the level you have - - do you have any kind of diagram ? im thinking of pulling mine down to the level you have - but a lot of it is riveted together....
    I didn't have to drill any rivets out of mine. The only part I considered drilling rivets out of was the piece of aluminium angle at the rear where the volumetric sensors and controllers are mounted. I decided it was a waste of time in the end.

    There's paint coming off the frame in a few places but ultimately, who cares, it's all internal and will never be seen.

    Mine was behaving in a very similar way after I descaled it. My element was definitely bad. If you have a multimeter it's easy to check. Even if you don't, (with the machine off and unplugged) disconnect both wires from the element and tape the ends up to insulate them. Now switch it on. If the breaker doesn't trip it's your element. Simple fix. Mine was $105 plus postage from Boema and arrived in two days. I suspect coffeparts.com might be cheaper.

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    Screwing the new element in is easy-peasy but getting the old one out might be a challenge. I had the boiler lid in a vice and used a pipe wrench of considerable size to get mine out. The nut is something like 1-7/8". Way way bigger than my biggest spanner or socket.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SPH View Post
    Screwing the new element in is easy-peasy but getting the old one out might be a challenge. I had the boiler lid in a vice and used a pipe wrench of considerable size to get mine out. The nut is something like 1-7/8". Way way bigger than my biggest spanner or socket.
    A 46mm ring spanner will do the trick. Thankfully we have one at work.

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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    I managed to run some water through mine tonight. It was heating up nicely, but I had to turn it off as my tap valves need to be adjusted. Looking promising though.

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    SPH
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    Hah, I ended up using a machinists clamp to put mine in.

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    dumb question - - how do you get the element out of the boiler ? I cant figure out if the boiler has to be removed or not ? it would be excellent if the OP could contact me,,,, Id love to be able to ring him and ask a few questions !

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    Happy to. I'll message you.

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    trying to upload photos

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    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    I managed to get most of mine reassembled yesterday and was pleasantly surprised to find it powered up. I even ran some water through it!!
    If either of you guys need a boiler gasket I ended up with two spare that I don't need so just flick me a PM if you're interested.
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    SPH
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    Funny you should mention that. I expect you'll have a pm very shortly.

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    Id love one - - do you mean the end plate gasket thats about 6" diameter ?

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    P.S - anyone got a link to a new element ? I have looked around with no such luck so far

    Im also in need of 2 portafilters...... the ones from my Rocket Giotto naturally dont fit

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    SPH
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    I just called boema. They knew exactly what I was talking about. Or call coffee parts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by acdc View Post
    Id love one - - do you mean the end plate gasket thats about 6" diameter ?
    Yes. I've seen your PM, will reply soon.

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