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Thread: Help with Machine Decision

  1. #1
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    Help with Machine Decision

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi all. First post here. I need some advice!

    I have a Sunbeam EM4800. I have since bought a krups basket and decent tamper, replaced the seal and collar when they wore out. I can get parts, and to me it makes better lattes than I have bought anywhere.

    Looking at a LelitPL41. Is it worth the change? The only downside I can see is a smaller filter basket than the standard, so I can't play around in the future, but, if I plan on playing around with baskets etc. wouldn't i want a higher grade machine to make the most of that?

    I make two double shot lattes a day, anymore and my brain gets a bit scattered I don't mind waiting to steam the milk, it does not really take too long so any reason to not get a single boiler? I will rarely use the machine to make multiple drinks in one go.

    So, is this a decent upgrade from what I have, or a bit of a sidestep with better build? I can spend more, but is it more the extra cash for something I can not drink too much of? What would be a better option if I went upwards price wise with the situation I have written above?

    A few questions there I know, and I hope I make sense I work hard and am tired most the time. Thanks for your time.

    *quick edit - I should mention that I really like making coffee, but I won't have time or energy to let it overtake my life. So care free equipment would also be a bonus! If I spend bigger, will that machine need extra care/servicing etc.

  2. #2
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    Have you thought of buying a second hand machine? You get really good bang for your buck and might be able to get something like a heat exchange machine which makes milk based drinks that much more pleasant to do. Personally I find single boilers (silvia, PL41) annoying but it does depend hugely on your usage profile. Anything more than 2 milk drinks with a single boiler is tedious in my opinion.

  3. #3
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    I have no problem buying second hand. Another thing is I do not have much bench space, so back to what I said about it overtaking my life. I guess it's a compromise like most things in life. Heat exchange machine added to my list. Thanks Pretzal.

    I just want to make the right decision so I can have a nice coffee and then get on with life without too many issues.

  4. #4
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    Braddo if you decide on the Lelit get the PID version, not much more, aids consistency and much cheaper than adding later. Think it is PL41TEMD

  5. #5
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    OK not too many options being made here, so I will look into Pretzal's suggestion, and if anything grab a LelitPL41 with PID so I have temp and pressure redings. I think it's a safe option for what I need.

  6. #6
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    LelitPL41 is a single boiler right?
    If milk coffee is your thing and you want no messy procedures, HX is my recommendation.

    It's going to be $1800+ though, not $900

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobSac View Post
    LelitPL41 is a single boiler right?
    If milk coffee is your thing and you want no messy procedures, HX is my recommendation.

    It's going to be $1800+ though, not $900
    I seem to go OK with what I have, but I am an amateur. I brew the coffee first, then steam the milk, and I'm happy to do that it turns out quite good I think, well I am satisfied with it anyway. Is this what you would describe as a 'messy' procedure? Happy to take advice. Will look into HX but i do have limited bench space.

    Is there no easy way out?

  8. #8
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    I need case it helps most people say that milk based drinks on a single boiler machine is a pain as you have to wait to heat and cool between pulling shots and steaming milk. You also have a risk of not filling the boiler and cooking the element but I think Lelit have a machine with auto fill.
    if you want to pull shots and steam milk at same time you’ll need to step up to a HX or stay with the twin theromblock design you have. The other option is dual boiler but these are generally more expensive unless you go to a appliance level brand such as bedeville.

    keep in mind if your after longevity you’ll need to get a water filter system set up to treat you water properly to avoid scale build up so account for that. Also don’t forget the importance of a decent grinder as a great machine is only a good as the ground beans you put through it (very generalised but hope you get the idea).

    a good and well loooked after second hand HX at a guess $1000-1500 but recommend you fit an OPV to that) and a grinder for $300 odd and you’ll well sorted. Just depends on what you want and how far the budget goes
    I had a Nuova Simonelli Oscar 2 with an OPV fitted extra that would be around $1600 new (guess $900 second hand) and a Lido E ($200 2nd hand-$300new) hand grinder and that made really good coffee.

    Hope I’ve helped. Oh did I meantion start home roasting to ‘save’ money hahaha
    Dimal likes this.

  9. #9
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    I've got the PL41. No PID, as it wasn't an option at the time. I don't find the 60s or so wait to get to steaming temperature much of an issue. Biggest difference I found over the thermoblock machines is the steam pressure is a lot better with the boiler.
    Dimal likes this.

  10. #10
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    Hi braddo and welcome.

    The 41LEM is a solid little machine that seems like it will meet your requirements. The 41TEMD is the PID'd version and for not many more $$ you get more temperature stability, a clear readout of temperature, the ability to tinker with temperature and stronger, more consistent steam. So well worth the upgrade in IMHO. The 57mm double filter baskets on these machines hold 18/19g so plenty for a double shot.

    The other single boiler in the Lelit range is the newer Victoria. This has auto fill on the boiler which means it can steam all day long and then it will automatically refill itself after steaming. This would suit someone who makes more milk coffees. We also have a good collection of second hand coffee machines available which might suit you.

    charlie
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  11. #11
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    OK this is good info everyone thanks. Have seen your site Charlie but misses the pre loved page, so I will be looking at that too. Thanks all for their time. I will buy a machine when I get through the maze.

    My afternoon procedure-
    Heat machine
    Pour shot
    Steam milk
    Clean wand and let steam out
    Run water through the machine like pouring a shot will no pf in it
    Drink coffee
    Come back in 20-30 mins
    Run water through the machine like pouring a shot will no pf in it
    Make another coffee as above
    Turn off machine

    Will a single boiler meet my needs? BTW I do have a Eureka grinder.
    I will start doing some homework with the above info, don't want to bother you all too much.

  12. #12
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    For two double shot lattes a day, a single boiler will be fine.

    charlie
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  13. #13
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Agree with Charlie...

    If I ever felt the need to venture back into espresso machine territory, that's the sort of machine I'd be going for too...

    Mal.
    CafeLotta likes this.

  14. #14
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    OK looking at Lelit Victoria. Small footprint, auto refill, can make multiple drinks, 58mm basket, PID? and timer which is more handy than the clock on the wall (used as a guide only I like to watch the shot). So more features and more care free than the cheaper machines. Thoughts? Am I on the right track here?
    Dimal likes this.

  15. #15
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    It's a great machine mate, and if it suits your budget then you are going to have the potential to be in a world of wonderful coffee, for a long, long time...

    Mal.

  16. #16
    Senior Member LeroyC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by braddo View Post
    OK looking at Lelit Victoria. Small footprint, auto refill, can make multiple drinks, 58mm basket, PID? and timer which is more handy than the clock on the wall (used as a guide only I like to watch the shot). So more features and more care free than the cheaper machines. Thoughts? Am I on the right track here?
    Yeah the Lelit Victoria would be great. You have a Sunbeam EM4800 at the moment? If youíre managing with an EM4800 which is a very basic machine youíll find the step up to something like the Lelit to be pretty amazing. The only extra care and maintenance it needs is regular backflushing which is pretty easy. Where are you based? Are you able to get in to Jetblack or another store to have a look at the Lelit or some other options? Iíve always found actually looking at the machines and testing them if possible to be really valuable.

  17. #17
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    I can drive to Jetblack, maybe 1.5 hours, but, I am so busy with work, and so tired when I am not working to put in the effort, I know that sounds lazy but that is how I am these days....

    Another question.......E61 machines. Worthwhile for milk drinks? or best used for shots? Just trying to eliminate more options here. My beans (which I will start another thread about) come into contact with oxygen when left in the grinder, so, am I going to get the best out of a more expensive machine when the bean will not be 100%? and back to my milk question, will I destroy a nice shot by mixing it with tons of milk?

  18. #18
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    OK still leaning towards Victoria, but, it's a tough decision. Will think for a while longer and fill you guys in when I decide.

    Thanks for the above posts was a BIG help.



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