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Thread: First machine recommendation for newbie.

  1. #1
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    First machine recommendation for newbie.

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi all, new to the forum wannabesnob here looking at purchasing my first machine. Apologies for another "what do I buy" thread but I'm new and completely overwhelmed.

    Have wanted to upgrade from my pod machine which I never use now (keep going to local shop) to something decent and after a week away with a Breville Barista I was all set to buy until a friend who to me has a very nice Expobar (on the forum somewhere) setup said invest in some good gear. Now I'm clouded with millions of options and no idea.

    Criteria:
    -Was looking to be all done and dusted for $700 (barista) but that budget is starting to raise, I don't want to upgrade too soon so I'm looking at a max of say $1000 for the machine. New with warranty would be nice.
    -Small form factor would sway me, my kitchen isn't small but I dare not overstep my bounds in wife's domain.
    -Apart from the breville and a shot on mate's Expobar (some model more than I can afford), I'm a complete rookie so I probably don't want something completely crazily complicated. I'm plenty capable of research, trial and error and love to learn new skills but it'd be a good bonus if the wife can use (has worked in a cafe at least).

    So far I've looked all over gumtree and the department stores but I've found a few I think are worth my time:
    Racilio Silvca - appears very proven. Do I need a PID? I don't know.
    Lelit PL41TEMD - appears small and was recommended in another thread.
    Oscar II - local to me on gt, limited use still under warrant (5 months) wants $950 with a cheap grinder.

    Saying all that, I'd really like some opinion and steering to what would meet my criteria. Obviously I'll need a grinder etc. so happy for any advice there. Since it's Sunday and in SA tomorrow is a public holiday I can't really go into any good stores (good guys really couldn't help past all-in-ones)for a few days but happy to support locally but I want some sort of idea of what I want.

    Thanks in advance.

    Daniel

  2. #2
    Senior Member level3ninja's Avatar
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    Is your budget all inclusive with the grinder as well? The grinder in some ways is more important than the machine.

  3. #3
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    I've been told that. Budget is for the machine so expect a few more hundred for grinder and various other bits. I'd like to keep the budget down but I also want to buy something I'm going to be happy with for a good while.

  4. #4
    Senior Member level3ninja's Avatar
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    If look at something like a Company K3 (Touch or Push varient) or a Macao M2 (D or M variant) for the grinder. A Lelit PL41TEMD will probably suit you nicely, the Oscar II is a decent machine but if you're not familiar with operating and servicing machines I would avoid buying anything off GT because you don't know what you're getting. Have you checked out the for sale section here? https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-hardware-sale/
    A Silvia with an aftermarket PID or an older Sunbeam EM6910 (round drip tray full indicator instead of a line shape) would also work.
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  5. #5
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    You can find the Breville BES920/grinder combo for around $1200. I think personally they're the perfect step up. Grinder in particular is good to get used to using one but cheap enough that after a year or so, you don't mind buying a new one to step up.

  6. #6
    Senior Member level3ninja's Avatar
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    The BCG820 is kind of ok, really not that good. It is seriously lacking when paired with a BES920, a 920 can produce much better coffee with a better grinder than it can with a BCG820. A K3 or M2 is over the threshold of not needing replacement after a short while.

  7. #7
    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    I got all excited and thought Glen Danzig had joined Coffee Snobs for a second there.
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  8. #8
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    Thanks for the advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by level3ninja View Post
    If look at something like a Company K3 (Touch or Push varient) or a Macao M2 (D or M variant) for the grinder. A Lelit PL41TEMD will probably suit you nicely, the Oscar II is a decent machine but if you're not familiar with operating and servicing machines I would avoid buying anything off GT because you don't know what you're getting. Have you checked out the for sale section here? https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-hardware-sale/
    A Silvia with an aftermarket PID or an older Sunbeam EM6910 (round drip tray full indicator instead of a line shape) would also work.
    Yeah, I've been looking through and now I'm starting to get an idea of what I want. The sunbeam looked good but I'm a bit hesitant about reliability from what I've read.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by danzig View Post
    Thanks for the advice. ..........
    The sunbeam looked good but I'm a bit hesitant about reliability from what I've read.
    I suggest it is best to get four year extended warranty with any of the appliance machines for the $100 or so. Have fun.

  10. #10
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    Has saved me a few times Warren.

    See a Silivia V5 with PID on forum has PMd to see if still available.

  11. #11
    Senior Member level3ninja's Avatar
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    The Rocky grinder with that V5 will be a decent starting place if the seller doesn't want to split them.
    Whatever equipment you get, a good tamper and a reasonable set of scales are a must.
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  12. #12
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    Sadly Silvia was sold. Found another Rocky local which is hopefully available.

    Now learning towards a new Lelit PL41TEMD unless someone can suggest a better option for around the mark. I could still offer $850 on the Oscar ii but like said it's a risk (apparently still under warranty though and looks in very good cond.).

  13. #13
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    G'day danzig...

    That Lelit PL41TEMD is a real beauty mate and very hard to go past in my view.
    Will outperform a Silvia in all the ways that matter and being a 100% stainless steel build, capable of lasting a lifetime...

    Mal.
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  14. #14
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    Good to hear Mal! It's how I'm leaning atm. I'm going to call up some local places see if anyone has in stock tomorrow.
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