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Thread: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

  1. #1
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    Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hey forum. Im looking for some advice.

    With coffeesnobbery going to my head (I started roasting about 2 months ago). I did something a bit silly - although I was (and still am) thinking it was a pretty good deal at the time.

    Having sorted out the grinder issue (for now - with a Sunbeam EM450) I moved onto machines, did some research, and had budgeted about $500-$600 for a machine (upgrading from a Sunbeam EM350 or whatever their low end one is called). I headed over to eBay where I managed to secure myself a 3 group Rancilio Z11 Omicron for a price within my budget. It has been recently serviced. It arrived yesterday - and to my wifes horror took up almost our entire kitchen bench.

    So now Im selling it, or looking to. Having spent a few hours cleaning and polishing the machine inside and out Im thinking Ill make a slight profit. Google suggests Mr Capuccino sells New 2 group Z11s for $7400USD.

    Any idea what this is worth/what I should be selling it for? Its currently on eBay with a starting price of $450, it has had no bids so far, and Im not against removing it and listing it here or elsewhere.

    Your advice would be very helpful.



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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Hi nmcampbell and welcome to CoffeeSnobs.

    Unless the commercial machine is relatively new they wont sell into the commercial market..... so your target audience is home use....

    Now as you have discovered a 3 group is huge (even my 2 group is big) and these suffer severely from lack of WAF (wife approval factor) ::) ::) They also require plumbing and a high current (20 Amps or more for a 3 group) special power run. These are expensive to instal and, although there are work arounds, this requirement will deter most potential buyers.

    So whilst a single group commercial might fetch over $1000. a two group (even in good condition) can be struggling to get the mid $500s...... a 3 group and above will be even harder to sell and fetch less.

    Id basically put it up for sale with no reserve and just take your chance.... but dont expect much unless it is really fairly new (and it doesnt sound like it is) or is a very collectable model which has been rebuilt - and it doesnt fit that either. Might have to write this off to experience (or hope someone else will snap up the "bargain")

    Best of luck.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Any tips on the "work arounds" for the power - Im in a rental so really cant do too much to the power/plumbing situation.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    If I decide to keep it that is.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Quote Originally Posted by nmcampbell link=1205286292/0#2 date=1205290192
    Any tips on the "work arounds" for the power - Im in a rental so really cant do too much to the power/plumbing situation.
    The elements in these machines are actually three seperate units so they can be used on 3 phase - one element per phase. They can be rewired so that only one element (7 amps) or two (14 amps) are required...... That will slow recovery and increase the heatup time by the same factor as the current is reduced.... but for home use that isnt a real issue.

    Re plumbing. Some commercial machines will happily draw water from a reservoir (certainly those fitted with a procon pump can)... whilst others - like my La Cimbali - attempting this will destroy the pump - they MUST have mains pressure. Im not sure what type the Rancilio Z11 uses. For waste, some people just placed the drain line into a bucket and that works quite well.

    They can be used at home and are excellent machines..... but it is mainly the amount of real estate they occupy which turns most buyers off.... after all how often do you need to make 4 coffees at home at the same time (I do quite often ::)) and even fewer would have a requirement for 6 coffees to justify all that bench space.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Quote Originally Posted by JavaB link=1205286292/0#1 date=1205287245

    So whilst a single group commercial might fetch over $1000. a two group (even in good condition) can be struggling to get the mid $500s...... a 3 group and above will be even harder to sell and fetch less.

    Best of luck.

    Yup! Javab is right,

    I saw what looked like exactly the same machine, [but I think it was a three group Rancillio S20] in excellent external condition [very shiny, no scratches, looked like little use] go at a local auction house for $460 only last week.

    But, If you decide to sell it, theres bound to be someone here who believes a true coffee snobber will only use a three group machine. at home

    Sugest you show ozscotts justification to your wife......here: http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1201300118/15#15

    It just may help.

    Best of luck whichever way you go.

  7. #7
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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Who needs bench space when youve got a dream machine like that? ;)

    Mind you, looking at the photo of it next to your old machine shows just how freaking big the thing is!

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Quote Originally Posted by m@ link=1205286292/0#6 date=1205294915
    Who needs bench space when youve got a dream machine like that? ;)
    Yeah - that was what I tried to say - she said something about man not being able to live on coffee alone....

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Quote Originally Posted by nmcampbell link=1205286292/0#7 date=1205298754

    Yeah - that was what I tried to say - she said something about man not being able to live on coffee alone....
    And that doesnt only relate to food..... ;) ;D ;D ;D ;D

    Fortunately my wife is VERY understanding and, although initially I was told "NO WAY.. not in MY kitchen" - once she had tasted a few coffees at the end of the rebuild phase, it is now proudly in the kitchen - and even shown off to visitors as "our" coffee machine. :) :)

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Hi,
    Ive got an ex-commercial 1 group that nearly didnt get accepted, being around 3 times bigger than the Gaggia it replaced.

    I managed a work around as its not all about coffee.
    The simple one is brilliant hot chocolates for the wife - way better than that achieved by the old machine.
    Keeping it on means endless, instant hot water on tap for many uses.

    As a person with a young family - there are a few extra uses here too.
    The steam wands are the PERFECT sterilser for dummies, toys, bottles etc or even for warming up a bottle of milk in super-quick time.

    The steam is also useful if you make jam or bottle your own fruit - who needs to boil the jars or have them sitting in an oven when you can steam to sterilise and heat the jars in seconds prior to filling.

    A few others have noted that a large commercial can help to heat the kitchen/house up in winter.

    lastly - not that Id ever do it myself - there are pics on the web of people who have scrambled eggs using the steam wand too.

    Good luck.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Im now keeping the machine - I got approval after realising that with a change of feet on the base we could tuck half the machine under a hanging cupboard and still allow room for ventilation and pipes to come out under the machine.

    I am very excited - and now looking for advice from fellow coffee snobs on the essential restoration process - I have an external procon pump which I intend to run with a reservoir of some sort (possibly a fish tank) but Im open to suggestions.

    I need to sort out the power situation - its currently set to run at 240V/25A but ive just got the cable without a plug so Im wondering what mods will need to be done there... Im keen to drop back to just using two elements (or even one). Any tips from other commercial machine users about how theyve sorted out the power situation would be appreciated.

    The guy I bought it from is a coffee machine reseller and his listing said it had been "recently tested" so Im pretty confident pumps etc are working.

    How would people recommend I go about descaling this machine?

    I look forward to your responses.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Ok,

    Im working through some of the issues on this machine and wondering if anyone can help me out.

    Im in Townsville and have arranged for a local coffee machine service and repairs guy to come and have a look at the machine. Hes from a coffee roastery/retailer of machines/cafe and tends to carry high quality machines - ie expobar, La Vibiemme etc. Their coffee is good, so I am working on the assumption that he knows his stuff. I was talking to him on the phone and I get the impression that he thinks Im an idiot for wanting to own a 3 group machine/set it up at home/leave the power on 24/7.

    My thinking after a week of research/playing with the machine is that in order to get the power consumption down to residential levels Im going to have to downgrade the element from the current 6000kW beast to something more like the 1 group 2100kW one.

    This guy seemed to think heating time would be a major issue if I did that - and the ability to create brew pressure - Im wondering if I dismantle the external pumps monitoring system and just manually maintain the water level whether that would allow me to keep a smaller volume of water in the tank - decreasing heating time and increasing the amount of steam capacity, hence the amount of pressure? This would potentially have the added bonus of decreasing the power load of the machine because I could power it externally through a separate power point.

    Does this theory work in practise?

  13. #13
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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    hi

    The guy I bought it from is a coffee machine reseller and his listing said it had been "recently tested" so Im pretty confident pumps etc are working
    bit like saying, removed from working cafe

    recently tested usually means some things work
    just fixed a machine for a customer, that was purchased on eba
    which was recently tested.
    one group valve didnt work, shower dead
    other group slow, no shower
    one steam valve leaked
    other stuffed
    pressure switch cactus, not switching properly
    boiler overpressure valve wound down tite so it would leak
    anti vaccum valve faulty
    full of rust
    customer paid $250 and another $700.00 to repair. he now has a 20 year old shit boema that should have been taken to the scrap yard

    so buyer beware


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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Quote Originally Posted by nmcampbell link=1205286292/0#11 date=1205820449
    Ok,


    This guy seemed to think heating time would be a major issue if I did that - and the ability to create brew pressure - Im wondering if I dismantle the external pumps monitoring system and just manually maintain the water level whether that would allow me to keep a smaller volume of water in the tank - decreasing heating time and increasing the amount of steam capacity, hence the amount of pressure? This would potentially have the added bonus of decreasing the power load of the machine because I could power it externally through a separate power point.

    Does this theory work in practise?
    I wouldnt reduce the volume of water in the boiler - it will totally destroy the "tuning" of the machine at best - and expose and burn out the element at worst!!!

    Reduced heater power does increase the warm up time..... by the same ratio as the power is reduced.... it does increase the recovery time (so you cant run all groups non stop like a cafe)... Neither of these are a problem in the home situation....

    And it DOESNT reduce the boiler pressure..... that is determined by a pressurestat..... therefore the number of heaters wont affect that (other than how long it takes to get there!!)..... The steaming capacity isnt affected..... but as I said above how many extractions per hour will be.... however it will still be FAR more than you require.....

    Just run one element and leave the rest alone..... and providing the machine is in good condition - it will perform perfectly in the home situation.

    And by the way, you will still use the same amount of electricity regardless of the number of elements..... With a single element (during testing and refurb) the element was on 30% of the time to maintain the temperature.... I now have all 3 elements working and the heater is on 10% of the time - but these are after the temperature has stabilised.

    And the coffee with just one element (and milk texturing ability) were both the same as they are now.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    I guess my terminology is a little out when it comes to electricity - its not the amount Im after - but the amount of charge required ie I need to get it down to 10A rather than 25A

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    Re: Rancilio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Ok, so after a few weeks playing around with my machine I now have it up and running.

    I got myself a one group element from coffeeparts and am now running 2 out of three heating coils to get the machine down under 10A. The pumps, groups etc meant that when I was running the boiler and the pump I was overloading the circuit (and almost killed the fridge in the process).

    I also had to replace the seals on the boiler as there was a bit of leakage happening. I took the front off and low and behold the boiler was full of a nasty scale buildup. I removed most of it with the vacuum cleaner and a bit of elbow grease - but now that Im up and running will do a citric acid descale as soon as Ive picked up enough citric acid.

    With every thing up and running I decided to give the machine a bit of a whirl prior to descaling. After about 55 minutes warm up theres enough pressure in the boiler to produce an almost limitless amount of nice dry steam. And were in business.

    The first shot I pulled was a bit of a gusher - I had a pretty coarse grind set because my now retired sunbeam EM3500 was a little finnicky. It still had a nice thick crema even though it was a very pale blondy colour. Im currently using some single origin sweet brazillians that I probably overroasted - theyre dark and shimmery and clump a little out of the grinder.

    I decided to go much finer for my next shot and went to the other extreme - the extraction took about 50 seconds and was very thick and gooey - but tasted amazing. The next one was almost perfect and I am very, very excited about my new beast. Which in the spirit of Rancilios female naming system I have called Sheila (because shes a tank - ala Red Vs Blue if there are any other fans out there).

    Ill post some photos shortly.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Ok, heres a collection of photos (including some roast shots and a dodgy fluky piece of latte art).

    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=23158&l=81319&id=572440487

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Gotta laugh at the 10th picture - Rancilio next to your - now very inferior - sunbeam, really shows how big your beast is. [smiley=shocked.gif]

    Your making those of us that upgraded from a machine similar to your sunbeam to a silvia/6910 very jealous. ( [smiley=undecided.gif] looks around and runs upstairs to hug and reassure silvia she is still the one for him - FOR NOW [smiley=evil.gif])

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    Hello forum,

    Well, two months in, and Ive got to say Im pretty happy with my machine and the shots it produces.

    I have been reading a little bit about temp profiles - and following the discussion on heat exchange v Boiler machines.

    Im wondering if anyone out there has looked into PIDing a similar Rancilio commercial machine?

    Id be interested in whether people think this is a worthwhile excercise.

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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    HI MMCampbell. I know this thred is a few years old however I too have acquired the same coffee machine and was thinking of restoring it also. Wouldnt mind some tips on how you got yours up and running..

  21. #21
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    Re: Rancillio Z11 Omicron - 2nd hand

    I restored a 3 group Z11 Omicron machine 3.5 years ago for our cafe. It was an ebay purchase from another cafe. restoration involved a strip down, descale of all copper bits with citric acid bath, new element and seals.
    I wired two of the three elements and run it off a single 20amp 240v power point installed for the purpose as we didnt want the expense of running 3 phase into the wall at the time.
    It takes about 20 mins to get up to pressure and the girls thought that was too slow of a morning so they leave it on 24/7 now and it has run like that for 3 years solid, doing about 3-4 kg/week of Andys finest (small cafe, quiet village).
    Apart from occasionally replacing shower screens and regularly replacing group head seals, tonight is the first time Ive done any real work on it. I had to replace 4 electrolytic capacitors on the computer board as it was taking 30 mins to come back to life after power cuts and also misbehaving on very frosty mornings. Now the buttons are immediate as soon as power is applied.
    Also replaced pressurestat as one of the three contacts had burnt out a while back (not using 3 phase, we had a spare contact) and replaced a weepy solenoid to one of the hot water outlets. It never dripped any worse over the 3.5 years, just I had a spare to put in.
    So I reckon its as good as the day it was made, probably some time in late 1980s? All parts from site sponsor CoffeeParts.com.


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    Question Rancillio Omnicron z11

    Hi, I know this thread is quite old but I was hoping someone here could point me in the right direction. I have bought an Omnicron z11 and was looking for someone to service, possibly descale, check and update the parts, and just get it running smoothly. I've had one service guy out already who didnt know what he was doing. I understand the machine is old and that's probably the reason I cant find anyone to service it. I've had a electrician out to connect the power and a plumber for drainage etc. now I just need a service tech. If anyone knows of anyone can you please let me know. I'm in the inner west if Sydney. I apologise if i have posted this in the wrong thread. I've never been on a forum before. Cheers



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