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Thread: Atomic restorers thread

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    Atomic restorers thread

    Hello there Bean,

    did the seller omit the atomic name because there was no label on the top of the machine? Or because there was a different name there? Such models are quite rare. Any how any decent Atomic for less than 400 is a bargain I reckon.


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Hi Jack,

    no the label looks looks like the Bon Trading one in a blurry photo. Got it on the *8-) side of $300. Beans roasted in readiness. A good scrub needed as well by the looks of it.

    Off to play with another new Syphon (only one more to make double figures *::) )


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    you have the collectors mania.... and coffee only fuels this condition...

    so a coffee machine collector is in real trouble.

    nice looking machine: great patina of age. You can polish that up if you like. A thorough cleaning, de-scaling, check valves, run several brews -water only.... should come up fine. Let me know if you run into anything on the restoration.






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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Like all collecting it is addictive ::)

    With the Aluminium bits is it best to use Citric Acid for cleaning or Cafetto? I dont think I want to have it polished on the outside just cleaned and descaled as I dont mind the old look.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 6E696D626A607565626B0C0 link=1236240384/14#14 date=1238472264
    Like all collecting it is addictiveRoll Eyes
    I have no idea what you mean BF :-?

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 2F282C232B213424232A4D0 link=1236240384/14#14 date=1238472264
    is it best to use Citric Acid for cleaning or Cafetto?
    For our large community of Atomic Vintage and Atomic Type machines owners, we would recommend Bomboras Clean Machines Triple Action solution to descale the unit with.

    Citric acid does only a small part of the job. Itll lift a small percentage of scale and has no cleaning action. Vinegar, also used domestically for cleaning coffee makers, does minimal descaling, has no cleaning effect and may cause corrosion.

    The Tripe Action is a coffee machine specifically engineered, bio-degradable solution that is safe on all metals, rubber and plastic surfaces. It is a highly effective descaler and cleaner.

    Not only that you can run it through the Atomic or any espresso machine to dissolve & remove scale, you can also soak group handles, filter baskets and milk jugs in 50 ml of solution with 3 liter water overnight, to remove any dairy scum, old coffee oils and other sediments.

    Additionally, try putting 20ml of it in your 400ml jug next time you clean your machine, fill your jug with water and steam, thus removing effectively this dry milk, having your steam arm shiny and clean again.

    It is available either as a 100ml bottle: www.dibartoli.com.au/product_details.asp?pid=109
    Or a 250ml bottle: http://www.dibartoli.com.au/product_details.asp?pid=110

    If youre interested learning in details how to clean your espresso machine, just email me to: ofra@dibartoli.com.au with your specific query.

    Ofra

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    for descaling I use citric acid powder. Use one teaspoon mixed in boiling water and completely fill the machine. Allow to sit for 10 minutes. Shake like crazy for a few minutes. Then put it on the stove and run a brew with no coffee on low heat. Rinse well. Repeat if necessary. Really hard scale may require something more aggressive. In an extreme case you can use ball bearings- you put them in the machine and shake like mad- this can help break up the scale.

    Vintage atomics can have bad scale if they were left for a long time with water inside and the black knob in place. However it can almost always be cleaned away (note to all Atomic owners: Never leave the machine full of water and coffee grounds! Clean and empty the machine immediately after use! Leave the black knob off the machine (in the coffee jug) when the machine is not being used- allow the boiler to remain dry when in storage. By following these rules your machine will remain in tip-top condition).

    what is the condition of the black water/safetly knob? On old machines this part can be worn- check the spring valve to ensure it is working well.

    I notice your bakelite jug handle is pretty burned and damaged- send me an email if you are after a perfect replacement part.

    If you did decide to polish- use Autosol- available at auto restoration places.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 544855554249534E4946444841414242270 link=1236240384/17#17 date=1238559239
    for descaling I use citric acid powder
    Hi Jack,

    Id be more inclined to recommend a solution that has been specifically designed to remove scale in coffee machines, is not so much dearer than citric acid, it can be used for multiple purposes (which would actually save money and time in the long run), and is certainly easily, readily available locally or online. Not to mention the fact youre supporting a Site Sponsor that way! *;)

    Ofra

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 1934021F3C2F293231345D0 link=1236240384/18#18 date=1238565834
    Quote Originally Posted by 544855554249534E4946444841414242270 link=1236240384/17#17 date=1238559239
    for descaling I use citric acid powder
    Hi Jack,

    Id be more inclined to recommend a solution that has been specifically designed to remove scale in coffee machines, is not so much dearer than citric acid, it can be used for multiple purposes (which would actually save money and time in the long run), and is certainly easily, readily available locally or online. Not to mention the fact youre supporting a Site Sponsor that way! *;)

    Ofra
    Citric acid, which can also be used for multiple purposes,is recommended by the importer and readily available at the supermarket for a fraction of the price of the triple action at about $1.50.

    Not to say that the Bombora product isnt great, but when the importer of these machines, who I regard as an absolute expert makes a recommendation, why wouldnt you follow his advice?


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Thanks for the replies. As my nearest place to buy Descaler is over 200kms away and I have some Citric Acid in the cupboard, I guess I will go with that.

    Next mail order I will add some commercial descaler and another tub of Cafetto or similar.

    Roast is resting went with the Harrar/Robusta 85/15. And a straight Harrar in case the Robusta is rubbish.


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Actually had a chance to start cleaning the new toy today . Found a special surprise when I unlocked the portafilter :P Valves are nice and free but I think I will shout it a new Stainless Steel basket and gasket kit. Handle is broken but I will see how it works as I dont plan on making huge shots.



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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I do recommend citric acid- and it has worked well for me restoring dozens of vintage machines- *but having said that I have not actually tried any commercial descalers. Ofra could well be correct that a commercial product will be more affective- and perhaps more speedy. As long as it is rated for use with Aluminum and is used according to instructions- it should be a fine alternative.

    I would recommend a preventative citric acid brew every few months for La Sorrentina users in places where the water is hard (like down here in SA). Just dont leave the solution in the machine too long.

    Keeping the machine empty between uses- and with the knob removed- cannot be overstated. This good practice will greatly reduce the likelihood of any serious scale build up. Ideally for the best results the purist water available should be used at all times.

    Bean: was that ancient Puck in it when it arrived! My Lord: some ebay sellers, huh- how hard to knock that out? Perhaps they though it may have collector value? A Genuwine Vintage Atomic Puck?

    This is exactly what you dont want to do with an atomic type machine (or any coffee machine I guess).

    Also I am guessing it is just a colour cast to your photographs (as there is green everywhere): but the group handle of the coffee machine has a definite greenish tint on my monitor: is the bakelite on the machine a very dark green? If so that would date to the machine probably to the mid 1980s.


    Has the black water knob seized on? If so there is a method for safe removal I can fill you in on.

    Although that machine looks pretty filthy- barring any hidden internal damage: it should clean up very nicely. One thing to check is the screws in the machine head. On the LS coffee machine they are of brass and wont rust, as were the earlier vintage atomic screws. However many later Bon Trading imported machines were fitted with steel screws that do rust and removal can be difficult. Are they damaged? Can they be removed? If they cannot be easily removed be very careful not to damage them. You need to use the exact correct size screw driver. Email me if they are stuck. If they are broken there is also a cheap solution- retapping those threads is difficult given the location.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Two citric soakings and flushes and the Aluminium is looking much better on the inside (the chunks have stopped coming out). Unfortunately the screen is held on with Steel screws which are being stuborn at this stage :(

    Date of the mid 80s tallies with the former owner as he thought it was around 20 years old. Bad green shots are on a phone camera under Halogens ;)

    Black knob just took a fair bit of muscle and a cloth to open.

    Back to screw removal and more cleaning [smiley=bath.gif]

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    be careful with those screws: if you are not getting anywhere you may want to soak the head with mineral turpentine over night- which will need to be carefully cleaned away afterwards. You simply invert the machine and carefully fill the little well inside the head. Better to go slow at those screws than snap one off.

    Also another tip: when cleaning be careful with the little resellers badge on top- many of these are fragile and can easily be damaged by cleaning- better to leave them alone in some cases.


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Oh boy, so glad to have found this thread! Just got an old atomic (B) (No frother) in the mail.... a bit knackered but should clean up nicely with your help. At one point, someone had put a creamy colored cafeteria seal in the head (gasp!), long since fried firmly onto the machine. I got the screen off, but the seal... any tricks for getting it off? Anything I could soak it in? I think youve already answered all of my de-scaling questions. Now... where can I get an old style small carafe? (Just kidding!). Thx in advance, any advice you can give me. (BTW, this is my 4th Atomic, the first two normal atomics long since given to friends, I own another non-Frother that i use every day, and this one will go to the girlfriend so I can have coffee at her pad too!) Best wishes. Mike.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Hello there Mike,

    actually if you have a Model B- then chances are that white rubber seal is the original factory one- and has been there since the early 1950s... I have had to remove them from a few machines including my little B model. Basically it sucks! you need to find some sharp stabbing instruments (a jewelers screwdriver is a good start) and work away at it- and at it- and at it and then some more, and finally some more. I found once you have broken away a lot of it a little water and detergent helps breaking up the last bits.

    Glad to hear that there is someone out there who still makes use of the old no frother atomics. Is yours the little model- smaller than other atomics?

    I can supply you with a new silicon seal, filter plate, brew basket, black knob- and a normal large jug- as required. The small jugs are virtually impossible to find- however if you keep an eye out at some op shops you may be able to find a very suitable little jug quite easily- like I did- with my model B Atomic:




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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Thanks for the advice, I better get to scrapin. Maybe Ill try and boil the head in water for awhile to soften it up. Yes, I have the smaller (B) (Smaller sump). Have lived with the regular Atomics for a few years, I eventually became captivated with the cleaner lines of the (B), and I had rarely dome much frothing, but all those red knobs look really cool too! Ive never been able to get the crema that you show in that incredible photo in this thread-- I guess I havent been trying hard enough, but youve inspired me now. I make what I call a "Black and White"... pour a cuppa (Atomic) joe, then carefully float about a tablespoon or less of heavy cream on the top. No stirring! The cream does all sorts of things... sinks... comes back up... swirls around- visually arresting. Then when you drink, you can alter the amount of cream in each sip. Lovely. Mike in Seattle.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Hi all,

    Just thought I would throw a comment in on descaling from some of the earlier discussions & for general interest. As they say, there are many ways to skin a cat. Its common knowledge that removal of scale is best done with an acid product. Citric acid is probably one of the mildest and whilst it has ‘some’ effect, by itself it will not deal with some of the scale that can develop from much of the harsh water we are dealing with in Australia. Many of the machine importers have reverted to locally developed descalers after having established that traditional citric descaling powders are inadequate for our conditions(warranty claims have been a catalyst here).

    To establish what you should be using for descaling your equipment, there are a few things to consider:

    1. The level of Total Hardness (ie how many parts per million of Calcium/Magnesium).The higher the hardness, the more aggressive &/or more regular your approach needs to be. Even if you have relatively soft water, high levels of chlorine can have a secondary impact on scale development….and needless to say Chlorine levels are at a record high for most water authorities as we turn to alternative sources of water supply.

    2. What else is your scale combining with?..ie dirt, rust & other dissolved solids – a single acid product will rarely clean a scaled boiler well. Keep in mind using filtered water is a big plus here….it makes descaling so much easier and less frequent.

    3. When was the equipment last descaled?….ie how many layers have evolved? How hard is it? Regularity is the key here…. I normally suggest every 2- 3 months for domestic equipment ( or less often if you are using filtered water)….depending on points 1 & 2.

    4. What type of equipment is it (i.e. Heat exchange, thermo bloc, open system etc).

    Citric acid may or may not work depending on much of the above comes in to play.

    Simply breaking scale off the surfaces can often cause blockages in steam arms, valves or jets ( in closed systems).

    If the scale has developed and been layered/impregnated with other minerals and dirt it can be more difficult to remove than first thought. This problem is amplified in a closed system (unlike what has been discussed here).

    When selecting a descaler I would take a more holistic approach. That is, combining a range of acids in conjunction with other cleaning agents to penetrate, lift & dissolve scale whilst cleaning the surface and restore the machine parts as close to its’ original condition as possible. As always…good rinsing afterwards. Many of the BRAND NAME packaged descaling liquids and powders are now very cost effective.....assisted of course by a bit of competition.

    In the end, as long as you do the job well, do it safely & not compromise the equipment or the flavours of the coffee you’re on a winner.

    Cheers :)

    Bernard
    Bombora Supplies

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    [smiley=thumbsup.gif] Good reply. If only it was easier to get hold of machine cleaners over the counter in regional areas and good coffee as well :)

    Just waiting on the Silicon gasket set for mine to have a play as the steam arm gaskets were rock hard. I havent polished it yet I think I like the patina of the Aluminium as it is.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Luckily the atomic boiler is quite separated from the coffee and there is never any back draw into the main boiler. Also there are no steel components in there- so no rust, and generally little dirt. I may have been lucky- or it may be the nature of the design- or maybe a bit of both- but so far I have managed to restore some heavy build ups using nothing more than citric acid.

    However - I will admit- sometimes I have done a LOT of shaking.


    Tim- about the Silicon gasket set: it contains three gaskets. The group head, black water knob- and a smaller one that goes inside the black water knob valve. It does not include seals for the vintage atomic steam arm at this time. Vintage Atomics employed seals made from a paper-like material. There should be two brass washers and three of the paper seals in between. The modern LS machine uses just 3 silicon o-ring seals- and due to a more precise tooling on the valve pin and housing this is more than adequate.

    The italian made atomics had more variation in the tolerances of the thread on the pin and housing from machine to machine- and for this reason (and also perhaps wear from use) sometimes steam can escape at the back of the red knob when the valve is opened. Even replacing the paper type seals may not fix this problem if the threads are quite loose.

    On some machines this is a non-issue- on others it can be bad.
    On a few machines I have found it better to replace the entire Steam arm housing and pin with new LS parts (you can still use the original red ball, knurled nut, steam arm and nozzle).

    If your seals are rock hard- that is OK- as long as they are not falling apart. If you can clean them and the pin can be screwed in and out easily- I would just put a small drop of olive oil on them- and perhaps you are done. Reassemble and test.

    If the valve proves leaky in operation- you could try using small o-rings to replace the paper seals- or you could source silicon seals of the correct diameter. The infamous Sydney importer sells the paper washers but I found they are hard to fit as is- and need to be carefully sanded into the correct size before you can use them. But you still want them to be as snug as possible. Tricky. *The new Zealand writer Tony Richardson even has a little section on how to deal with the paper washers in his book "Enduring Design: The Romance of the Atomic Coffee Maker" . I managed to break 2 out of 6 in the process last time I tried.

    I will include some possible silicon o-ring candidates seals in your order- and if your originals dont hold up they may do the trick. If anyone knows where could source silicon seals of this exact size I would stock them- if I could find my calipers -I could measure them.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Apologies to Di Bartoli and Bombora: I only just noticed Ofras original post above my first one about citric acid- I didnt see that post when I was writing mine - we must have been writing at the same time.

    I have now re-read everything in the proper sequence and decided- I will get myself some of this Bombora- and try it out on my next restoration job. I think I have a super scaly machine somewhere.... we will put Bombora to the test.


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A6C6969787A767F7F7C7C190 link=1236240384/19#19 date=1238573506
    Citric acid, which can also be used for multiple purposes,is recommended by the importer and readily available at the supermarket for a fraction of the price of the triple action at about $1.50.

    Not to say that the Bombora product isnt great, but when the importer of these machines, who I regard as an absolute expert makes a recommendation, why wouldnt you follow his advice?
    I hope Bomboras advice above has clarified the difference between citric acid and the Triple Action solution.

    To your query about our choice, we would always advise based on personal experience. Much before La Sorrentian has landed in Australia, weve been descaling our own Atomic several times throughout the years, admittedly using Citric Acid, which back then, we thought did the job well, and have been descaling yearly (using Brita at home)...

    Once becoming familiar with the triple action and learning it is safe for ALL type of metal, we have tried it ourselves around 2 years ago and noticed scale has been removed more thoroughly than with the acid. Since then, only minimal scale was build up and as soon as its *removed from our window display, itll probably go through another cycle.

    Moreover, instead of the regular scrubbing of the bottom of the portailter and baskets with a scourer that led to metallic, medicinal coffee taste for a while after cleaning, we tried soaking it all with water and the Triple Action solution in a container overnight.

    Most of old the residue and oils had been dissolved and easily removed with water, leaving us with minimal scrubbing to do. I certainly enjoyed my Atomic coffee taste better after that....we use it also to get rid of the dairy scum build up on our Atomic steam arm, when making black coffee, then steam is used to froth triple action and water together in the jug, getting rid of that scum easily with no scrubbing, chiseling, etc..

    If it works for us, it may work for few more people... :)

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Hello,
    I just got my hands on an Atomic!
    I am cleaning it up now.
    Dont have a manual.
    Not sure if the steam knob on my Atomic is stuck.
    Doesnt turn?
    Can I dismantle it with a wrench?
    Should I is the better question?


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    - the red ball should turn freely,

    if it is stuck try working it back and forth. If you cant free it like this you may need to take it apart. If you do take it apart you may need to replace the seals that go between the steam arm assembly and the body of the atomic. The washers on the valve pin may also need replacing. So definitely try just removing the pin (up to step 3)- putting a drop of olive oil on it and replacing- before you go to step 4. Only go to step 4 if you need to. To disassemble you need to follow this order:

    1) remove screw at the back of the red ball.

    2) Remove the knurled nut immediately behind the ball.

    3) Now the steam valve pin can be unscrewed completely. If it sticks at all it is just scale build up- keep trying and it should come out. Clean, oil and replace---

    or continue- but only if you need to replace all seals- if the valve pin can now screw in and out easily you may be done:

    4) Now you can use a wrench and remove the steam valve housing. This will also separate the steam tube from the valve housing.

    Put back together in the same order.




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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I attacked the fried portafiltro gasket on my new ancient Atomic B over the weekend... I tried letting the atomic sit in a pot of boiling water for awhile softened the gasket, and made it a bit gooy-er, making it easier to scrape some of it off, but only marginally easier. THe gooey gasket remained well adhesed. Bolder measures were required-- I then inverted the head and filled it with MEK and let soak for 10 minutes. This completely dissolved the offending matter, down to "The Atomic" level... just a rince and the gasket was completely gone. I must warn you that MEK (Methyl Ethyl Ketone) is a rather nasty chemical, and moderate care should be taken (Gloves, not used in a confined space), but with caution, it shouldnt decrease your lifespan that much.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 293528283F342E33343B39353C3C3F3F5A0 link=1236240384/34#34 date=1238988419
    - the red ball should turn freely,

    if it is stuck try working it back and forth. If you cant free it like this you may need to take it apart. If you do take it apart you may need to replace the seals that go between the steam arm assembly and the body of the atomic. The washers on the valve pin may also need replacing. So definitely try just removing the pin (up to step 3)- putting a drop of olive oil on it and replacing- before you go to step 4. Only go to step 4 if you need to. To disassemble *you need to follow this order:

    1) remove screw at the back of the red ball.

    2) Remove the knurled nut immediately behind the ball.

    3) Now the steam valve pin can be unscrewed completely. If it sticks at all it is just scale build up- keep trying and it should come out. Clean, oil and replace---

    or continue- but only if you need to replace all seals- if the valve pin can now screw in and out easily you may be done:

    4) Now you can use a wrench and remove the steam valve housing. This will also separate the steam tube from the valve housing.

    Put back together in the same order.


    I cannot finger-turn the "knurled nut".
    A wrench? Might wrench scratch up the nut if its aluminum?
    I think it is brass like the rest of the frother.
    Want to make sure.



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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 4B6F6D63406A676E6374727F060 link=1236240384/35#35 date=1239019430
    I attacked the fried portafiltro gasket on my new ancient Atomic B over the weekend... I tried letting the atomic sit in a pot of boiling water for awhile softened the gasket, and made it a bit gooy-er, making it easier to scrape some of it off, but only marginally easier. THe gooey gasket remained well adhesed. Bolder measures were required-- I then inverted the head and filled it with MEK and let soak for 10 minutes. This completely dissolved the offending matter, down to "The Atomic" level... just a rince and the gasket was completely gone. I must warn you that MEK (Methyl Ethyl Ketone) is a rather nasty chemical, and moderate care should be taken (Gloves, not used in a confined space), but with caution, it shouldnt decrease your lifespan that much.

    MEK?! I am not going to ask how/where you got it.
    A less nastier ketone would be acetone.
    You could find it in most hardware stores.
    It is also in nail-polish remover.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I have never resorted to such extreme measures.... but last time I used the stabbing method I reckon it took two hours to get the whole seal removed.... so whatever works for you ;-)

    As to the knurled nut: it is made of chromed brass as are all the component that make up the steam arm. Use a piece of rubber or thick cloth or some such to protect the surface and then some kind of gripping pliers to loosen it a fraction. Should undo easily then by hand though occasionally they are a bit stiff.

    Only when you have removed the knurled nut and valve pin- can the valve housing be undone. On a vintage machine there is a seal between this and the body of the machine. This seal is some kind of fibrous material and will fall apart once the valve assembly has been removed. The remnants will need to be cleaned away and a suitable replacement seal found. I have a clear silicon O-ring available that does the job- but any heat resistant seal of the correct size will do.



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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    YEAH!
    Didnt take drastic measures to loosen the frother knob.
    Boiled water worked.....

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I hope its appropriate to ask this here- the gorgeous photo of an atomic spewing forth crema.... thanks to you, Ive gotten the hint about using boiling water... but the correct grind evades me... I use an ancient american grinder called a Kitchen Aide A-9, which cant grind very fine. Fine. Is there a common benchmark for grind we can use? Like a number on a grinder? Or say... pre-gound Illy? I must experiment with grinds and tamps... usually I do a fine (but its not that fine) grind on my A9 and then tamp gently with the ball of my big thumb muscle. No crema yet though! Help! Best wishes and thanks! Mike in Seattle.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I think a consistency around white sugar grain size is close. It also depends on the amount you use (small or large basket) and the tamp. An indication that you have things correct would be that there is plenty of steam pressure for frothing...


    But even if these things are all correct you wont get much crema unless you have really good fresh ground coffee.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Hi Mike,

    it could also be your beans depending on their age from roast? Much after 2 weeks and the crema will start to diminish and after 3 or 4 very little. Also depends on the bean types in the blend or SO.

    With your grinder is it a blade type or does it have burrs? Blade types grind very inconsistantly so it is also maybe this?

    Keep doing battle :)

  33. #33
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    SC and Beanfly! Ive been using Illy out out of the 6lb can... just opened the new can but... I think I can try harder / do better... I love Illy but lucky me, I live in an industrial area here in Seattle and two doors down a new coffee roasting affair just moved into a big warehouse... I think Im gonna go hit them up! THANKS for the help, I will keep you roasted... no wait I mean posted.

  34. #34
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Slightly Off Topic-- anyone know where I can get a gasket for an OLD STYLE (thin gasket) Vesuviana #3? Thanks.

  35. #35
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 1337353B18323F363B2C2A275E0 link=1236240384/44#44 date=1240003959
    Slightly Off Topic-- anyone know where I can get a gasket for an OLD STYLE (thin gasket) Vesuviana #3? Thanks.
    Mike, suggest you email site sponsor, Jack from Sorrentina Coffee. ;)



  36. #36
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Another atomic needing some work. It used to be red, but lived outside a bit too long I think.


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Looks like a candidate for repainting? I have a faded red one that I have been thinking of having resprayed.

    The original paint is quite thin and wears easily- I dont know how easy it would be but a thick hard enamelware/graniteware type finish would be fantastic. Powder Blue? With green bakelite fittings?

  38. #38
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I was hoping to polish it up - although the surface is quite rough (which I assume is how they came, not just due to the weather this one has seen). Is there any reason that would not work? My other big challenge will be the group bolts which are not much but rust.

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    hmm, the painted machines will not polish up as well as the polished variety. The surface is quite different- on the standard machines it is polished smooth- but on the painted machines it is dimpled all over- they never finished the surface after casting. So you could polish it but it wont look like other machines- it will have a textured surface.

    with those screws be careful- soak them in RP7 for a few days with the machine inverted. you can use small snips to cut the filter plate away from the screws to make removing them easier. If they break it is no great loss and there is a solution for that as well.

    I was wondering if perhaps we could split this thread into two- one for Atomic restorers and one for Sorrentina users?

  40. #40
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Hi all,

    Maybe the mods can be kind enough and merge this thread into here as I got a quite a few good tips on restoring and polishing my Atomic here.

    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1242741640

    Cheers

    Chris

  41. #41
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 2E322F2F38332934333C3E323B3B38385D0 link=1238410912/38#38 date=1244201997
    If they break it is no great loss and there is a solution for that as well.
    One broke, and the other stripped the thread it looks like to me! Id love some tips what to do next! thanks.

  42. #42
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    You could try an easy-out but I dont know if you can get one small enough to fit in the space- or drill into the screw.

    But-

    One broken screw is not too bad at all. What you need to do- is get a pop rivet gun and place a rivet in the screw hole of the filter plate to blank out that hole. Then just secure it with the one remaining screw. In point of fact even if you broke both you could rivet both holes and the seal will hold the filter plate in place well enough all by itself- just like in a moka pot.

    If your filter plate is damaged- PM me and I can arrange to have a new one sent to you- pre-riveted. You will also want a replacement brass screw (which I can supply).

    You could try an easy-out but I dont know if you can get one small enough to fit in the space- or drill into the screw.

    here is what I am talking about~

    before and after:






  43. #43
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 504C5151464D574A4D42404C45454646230 link=1238410912/41#41 date=1244955251
    You could try an easy-out but I dont know if you can get one small enough to fit in the space- or drill into the screw.
    yes I dont think I would be able to get in there - none of my drills would be small enough to do the job. *

    Quote Originally Posted by 504C5151464D574A4D42404C45454646230 link=1238410912/41#41 date=1244955251
    One broken screw is not too bad at all. What you need to do- is get a pop rivet gun and place a rivet in the screw hole of the filter plate to blank out that hole. Then just secure it with the one remaining screw. In point of fact even if you broke both you could rivet both holes and the seal will hold the filter plate in place well enough all by itself- just like in a moka pot. *
    Good solution! *I think I will try the 2 rivets, if there is really no need for either screw.

    Quote Originally Posted by 504C5151464D574A4D42404C45454646230 link=1238410912/41#41 date=1244955251
    If your filter plate is damaged- PM me and I can arrange to have a new one sent to you- pre-riveted. You will also want a replacement brass screw (which I can supply). *
    I didnt damage the filter plate, so thats ok. *But I am missing lots of bits, so I will hopefully be in cotact soon, as long as I can figure out something to do with the old red finish.

    Thanks for your help, Damian.





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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    I got interested again (now that I dont think it will end up in the bin due to screw problem!). 5 mins of sanding, and quick go over with autosol, and looks like it will polish up nicely with some work.


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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    the story goes that the painted atomics were produced in the 70s and 80s because the cost of hand polishing had become too high. Therefore after casting the rough surface was not finished. So I guess you are just completing the job as originally intended. Hell of a job it will be though- doing all that by hand- if you knew someone with a sand blaster you could cover the badge with a bit of paper- then a layer of blue-tack- and blast the old red paint away...

    Before you blank out both holes- I would try and preserve the one remaining screw if possible. As I said- it isnt essential- as when the PF is locked in the plate and seal are held firmly in place- but it would be desirable to have the one screw if possible. If you end up getting parts from me I will included some brass screws of various lengths - one of them should do- and even if the hole is threaded- you can probably guide in the new screw and rethread it that way.

  46. #46
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 677B6666717A607D7A75777B72727171140 link=1238410912/23#23 date=1238988419
    1) remove screw at the back of the red ball.

    2) Remove the knurled nut immediately behind the ball.

    3) Now the steam valve pin can be unscrewed completely. If it sticks at all it is just scale build up- keep trying and it should come out. Clean, oil and replace---
    Hi! I can unscrew the knurled nut without undoing the screw (as this is all rusted up and weak). Should I be able to do step 3 above without undoing the screw? Is the screw to just attach the ball? thanks, Damian.

  47. #47
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    yep- the screw just holds the ball on. But usually you need to remove the ball to remove the knurled nut completely. If you can undo it completely- then you should be able to screw the ball and valve pin completely out of the housing. Then you can get your spanner onto the two flat edges of the steam valve assembly- and remove that.

    hope thats not too confusing? :o i think I may be confused...

  48. #48
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    makes sense - thanks. Ill keep working on it then and hopefully it will come off!

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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    ok broken a few more bits!!! haha. I was turning teh black knob, slowly working it out, and before I knew it the screw holding the ball on snapped, and the brass under the knob bent. I didnt think I was applying that much force (just turning by hand). It eventually came apart, and at least I only broke replaceable parts. But there goes my cheap fixup! Serves me right for trying to rush things along. I think I need just about every part available now!!!

    Time to get polishing, and hopefully it comes up respectable.

  50. #50
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    Re: Atomic restorers thread

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    hmm,

    no good.

    not to worry- looks like you will need a new steam assembly- better off to replace the housing, pin and nut- you will be able to keep the original steam wand I should say.

    you can polish the black ball with Autosol as well...

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