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Thread: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

  1. #1
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    La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi folks,
    I have recently picked up a La Pavoni 2 group, which is sitting patiently in my shed while I ... erm... redesign and rebuild my kitchen / laundry area to accomodate it *;D ;D
    I plan on stripping the Pav down and restoring it ... shouldnt be too hard as it looks in reasonable nick ...
    My first, in what threatens to become a never ending series of questions, is relating to plumbing in the machine...
    In short, do those of you who run plumbed-in commercial machines in the home..
    1. use a pressure regulator to ...regulate the pressure *:P *If so, what type?
    2. use some sort of water softener to prevent / minimize scale build up. If so, what *type? Do they effect taste very much? How often do they need to be changed? There is one on evilbay that looks OK ... anyone with any experience with them??

    Thanks for any input
    Cheers,
    buff



  2. #2
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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    buff,

    Pressure regulators are available from most good plumbing supply houses (including some of the very big hardware chain stores)..... what you want is a 350kpa regulator (approximately 3.5 Bar)..... expect to pay around $100 for one of these....

    Water softeners for coffee machines come in two main varieties.... cartridge and ion exchange. The cartridge has to be replaced fairly frequently - and is expensive..... the ion exchange (which most cafes use) is recharged every couple of months with a kilo of cooking salt.... ongoing costs being minimal.... but both work very well.

    If you are interested in the ion exchange units (a stainless steel cylinder with a couple of taps) check out commercial machine repairers etc.... they often have second hand units for sale at a good price.

    As far as taste.... little effect but what there is is generally beneficial..... Unless you go to a RO water softener.... coffee needs some water hardness for best taste and the RO units remove all the hardness (and can also stop the level sensor working).... RO units are also expensive.... so stay away from them!!!!!!

  3. #3
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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    the ion exchange (which most cafes use) is recharged every couple of months with a kilo of cooking salt.... ongoing costs being minimal.... but both work very well.
    ion exchange works well as long as they are recharged regularly approx every 21 days
    most cafes that have them have absolutely no idea what they do, nor do they or the service personal regenerate them

    RO units are very good
    when using ro units you need to fit a special filter to put a mineral back in to the water so that the automatic level control workls

    hi buff
    where do you live,
    what is your water quality,

  4. #4
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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    thanks guys..
    JavaB ..are the regulators vital, or just overpimping??
    fix ..Im in Adelaide, water has a rep of being crap, but is nowhere near as bad as it used to be....apparently its pretty hard, though
    cheers

  5. #5
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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    buff,

    With a commercial machine and rotary pump the pressure applied to the puck is regulated at the pump..... and that sets the difference between the supply side and the delivery side....

    So if you set the pressure at 9 Bar with 5 Bar of mains pressure..... you will always get 9 bars as long as mains pressure stays at the 5 Bars....

    But if someone in the house turns on a tap.... flushes the loo etc.... mains pressure could drop to 3 Bar - and in Summer (in the days when people used to water their gardens ::)) the street supply pressure could drop as well....

    Now the pump has been set for 4 Bar "differential" pressure...... If the supply is now 3 Bar..... then the pressure delivered to the group will be 3+4 .... or only 7 Bar!!! With a regulator it can drop to 3.5 Bar without change and even at 3 Bar.... you will still have 8.5Bar at the group.

    Also some pumps require a maximum supply pressure of 5 Bar..... so if your local supply is higher.... you need a regulator..... and a lower "mains" pressure can also improve the pre infusion characteristic of some machines....

    So Id fit one!!!

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    bunnings has a 350kpa pressure regulator - looks to be the same as what I have - $80 I think it was. But they are not good for fittings you will need, but coffeeparts has a good variety. Also dont know if you have to do any other plumbing for it - I had to do a fair bit, and found flared fittings are very expensive in comparison to soldered (and even more if you need to buy a flaring tool) so id avoid them if you can.

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    update...been hard at it doing my laundry renovation...still a work in progress !!!
    Have got one of those ion exchange softeners from a guy who decommissions cafes, and will look at doing the plumbing in the coming weeks.
    I have a filter system which I found is already fitted "downwind" of a pressure regulator...I plan to tee off from the 1/4inch line from the filter...to the softener...then to the machine.
    My question relates to the flow from such a setup...I dont care how long the boiler takes to fill, but will the flow rate of water through 1/4 inch line be sufficient for proper water flow throught the heat exchangers???
    I hope I am just over-thinking this and have nothing to be concerned about, but Id hate to run the lines (under my floor from kitchen to laundry) only to find the machines pump is trying to suck water throught too small a straw !!
    Thanks for any advice,
    buff

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    a minimun of 3/8 is recommended, the longer the run the larger the ID
    if the boiler takes too long to fill, the electronics will shut the machine down, generally 90secs

    depending on the age of the crystals in the softener, you may need to replace them

    graham

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    thanks Graham....bugger....does that mean I have to change the filter housing from 1/4 to 3/8 as well to get better flow throught he whole thing???....if so, I might just do a complete new run ..."kerching!"
    re the crystals...thanks...they dont feel mushy, so I thought they would be OK...might investigate new ones though...my unit is about 350mm high x 180mm diameter (not inluding the top handle)....there is no brand name visible but the instructions say use 1 kg coarse sea salt to regenerate model DA6, and 2 kg for model DA9...would you know which model I have, and therefore how much resin I would need to replace???
    Many thanks

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    Following Grahams advice, I have plumbed a dedicated line for the machine to ensure good flow.
    Filtered water through my second-hand water softener tasted absolutely foul after a regeneration cycle or four, and the resin has a few nasty green things in it...so I have decided to give the tank a good clean out with citric acid and elbow grease...and replace the resin.
    The unit, of unknown branding, is either a model DA6 or DA9, according to the instructions on the side.
    It has a water capacity of 8 litres to the brim and looks like one of these: http://www.espressotechs.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=33
    I am unsure as to how much resin to refill it with...some web info suggests to fill completely, which is also what I was told where I got the resin, but it was only about 5/8 filled with the old green stuff....
    Any advise on the correct level to refill with would be welcome
    cheers

  11. #11
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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    Attilio from CosmoreX Coffee..... <<<<<< Link over there
    is the man to talk to about all things water filtering and softening mate 8-). Give him a call or send an email,

    Cheers,
    Mal.

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    Thanks Mal...I hate bothering people on the phone when Im not gonna buy anything from them, so hopefully someone here will be able to assist...if not, will give him a call
    Ive got the citric acid toiling away ATM, so will hopefully have a shiny clean vessel to dose with the resin tomorrow....
    cheers

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    Buff,

    I have a similar unit and it is filled with resin to about 3/4 of the depth. From memory there is a little filter screen which is just above the level of the resin (It must be where the water enters or leaves the filter)...... and when you tip in a kilo of salt for regeneration - it pretty much fills the remaining space above the resin.....

    Sounds like yours is in need of some serious TLC :o :o

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    Hey guys sorry to jump in and hijack the convo but I have a sick Pav 2 to fix. I saved it from storage in an old container where it was slowly decaying...
    The problem... Ive got 20 amp power running to it, hooked up by an electrician, but when I flick both switches it trips the circuit... Its fine with just the lightening bolt power button however the element button next to it seems to be the issue. Is this a problem with the element? Could it be a dodgy part? I can take photos if that would help?

    JC

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    Re: La Pav 2 group....let the questions begin...

    well...after a lengthy lay-off, the laundry reno is done, the water filtration and softening system is hooked up and I have started taking the panels off the Pav..
    My first intention was to strip it down to the frame and restore *it...descale all components, fit all new gaskets *and seals, then start it up to see how it goes. Im now second guessing myself and thinking just to start it up, see what needs fixing and go from tthere...and leave anything that is working alone..
    Whats the consensus here???...go from scratch or do the minimum??...descale boiler/HX in-situ or pull apart???
    Like any project where you have no experience, taking the first step is somewhatt daunting
    thanks for any advice
    buff



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