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Thread: Newby with a Cimbali Alina..help..

  1. #1
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    Newby with a Cimbali Alina..help..

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi,

    I am not sure if this is the right place to post but please suggest elsewhere as appropriate.

    I have purchased, cheaply, an old Cimbali Alina machine and i need some assistance.

    It is a mess and needs an overhaul, which i should manage as i am reasonably handy.

    What i would like to know is:
    a) more about my machine
    b) an operating/parts manual, if available or who may know of someone who may be ablr to help
    c) my machine may be missing a few parts, such as a pump. Can these machines be modified to be connected to the mains and not use the pump?
    d) any other info that may help me in my quest.

    Any help is going to be much appreciated and most welcome.

    cin cin,

    Alex

  2. #2
    TOK
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    Some food for thought re your points:

    a) not trying to be facetious but....its a commercial coffee machine. Makes coffee if set up and operated correctly. Designed to operate efficiently in continual use. The brand is known for building solid equipment....but that said, apparently your machine is old and in need of work, so solid doesnt necessarily mean "good coffee" any time soon. If in Australia, is it 220 or 230 or 240 volt machine? How many amps? Have you thought what you will do as its bound to be atleast a 15 amp (if not a 20 amp machine)? Most homes dont have that connection, and if the element is not a multi, it wont be able to be reduced (by a person with requisiute qualification or experience) to work off a 10 amp circuit.... Does a machine with a large boiler designed to work efficiently with a 15 or 20 amp element work ok (make good coffee) when run at below 10 amps? Ie will it deliver water at correct brew temperature...over what volume of coffees in a home situation (note comment above "designed to operate efficiently in continual use") etc?

    b) contact the La Cimbali importer in Melbourne, and they also have offices in other states....and good luck with that........
    But I doubt you will ever get an owner booklet as that is the first thing that goes west after fitment.

    c) pumps can be bought anywhere but wrt model specific items, if relying on the importer....good luck with that..... and yes you can connect to the mains without operating pump. Just dont fit a water pressure limiting valve ie connect to full mains pressure...but note it varies on your location and time throughout the day, so is a bit of a lucky dip in terms of having certainty and uniform or consistent (there goes the "C" word) operation. This is nothing more than a "general" comment on plumbing and does not cover ANYTHING to do with electrics......

    d) you have to ask the questions first so others can give you the info
    Last edited by TOK; 9th December 2013 at 06:12 PM.

  3. #3
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    Answers much appreciated.

    It is 240V with a 2850W element which puts it into the 12A area.

    Alex

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    I shall chuck a few photos up to hopefully show the "pleasure" of the task that awaits.

    Could be fun...

    Alex

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    Mate, I just wanted to write to say go for it!
    I started with a completely trashed Rancilio machine - I had never rebuilt a coffee machine before in my life, but with careful reading on the internet and encouragement from this website, I was able to get it restored and running again. It was a steep learning curve but if you just take your time and really think through each step, you will get there and gain quite an education into the workings of a commercial espresso machine along the way.
    You will definitely need to get yourself a pump though, they occasionally come up but your best bet is to call a few espresso service workshops and see if they have one they are willing to part with for a reasonable price. I have also found service manuals or at least exploded diagrams for most of the machines i have worked on, they are out there, either on parts web sites or other coffee enthusiast websites. Most people are happy to scan them for you if they have them. Posting pictures really helps get people enthusiastic.

  6. #6
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    One other thing...
    as you take the machine apart be very careful to document everything - take pictures of the parts and how they fit together and label things. It really pays to be meticulous with your organisation- label parts, put things in ziplock bags, the more organised you are the easier it will be when it comes to re assembly. The other advantage is it breaks the job into smaller tasks which makes it all less overwhelming. Good luck!

  7. #7
    Senior Member skydragondave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TOK View Post
    and yes you can connect to the mains without operating pump.
    Can you please explain this comment? How do you reckon a commercial espresso machine can pull a shot properly without a pump and strictly relying on mains pressure which will be 6BAR at best?

  8. #8
    TC
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    Quote Originally Posted by skydragondave View Post
    Can you please explain this comment? How do you reckon a commercial espresso machine can pull a shot properly without a pump and strictly relying on mains pressure which will be 6BAR at best?
    I'll get that....

    A little research would show that the Cimbali Alina is a spring lever machine.

    Like all other lever machines, a pump is only required if mains pressure is <3 bar or if the machine is being operated from some sort of tank.

  9. #9
    TOK
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    Hi there.

    Re "pulling a shot properly", its actually answered in the original post

    Quote Originally Posted by TOK View Post
    ..............bit of a lucky dip in terms of having certainty and uniform or consistent (there goes the "C" word) operation.........
    The OP wanted to know if he could, and....he can...if he is ok with the consequences of fluctuating pressure in his location.....

  10. #10
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    Thanks all for the input so far.
    This is the machine i have, well in much better nick, i must say, that is the "project"
    Does this machine have another name that i can use to search with?
    I have contacted Cimbali in the home country and the answer is that they have stopped making them and try a local vendor. I did but they seem unfamiliar with the product.

    As for drawings, hmmm

    Can you see why i need as much help as i can get...

    Alex




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