Post By level3ninja
EM6910 Poorly Machined Shower Screen
Hello to the trove of bean gurus
So I've just begun my journey down the rabbit hole after seeing a new Breville Bambino Plus hit a price that interested me (thanks OzBargain). Ended up doing a few weeks of reading scrapped that idea after checking it in store and feeling how light and cheap it felt (used to a commercial machine), and ended up buying a mid 2008 EM6910 (second hand for $150 for the whole kit and kaboodle, including a EM0480 grinder). Quite happy with the condition, portafilter locks between 5 & 6. She's getting fed by a BCG820BSS and I've swapped the stock baskets for an 20g ridgeless VST. ~$400 in the hole so far.
I gave it a thorough clean, 6ltr vinegar descale followed by a 3ltr demineralized water flush which got the hot water tap to stop leaking through the group (no excuse to pull apart the solenoid now, darn). The portafilter had its plastic insert binned and the brass was relieved of the thick tar like coating. I pulled the shower screens (had to use a drill, why so tight) and the group seal gave them and the group head a good time with my friend vinegar, curing them of the black death. Decided the seal had actually been replaced recently enough to continue using.
But when I went to clear the shower screens of embedded grind, I noticed the needle I was using wasn't clearing quite a few of the holes, turns out the screen wasn't machined well, some holes are partially punched while others are missing entirely. Which brings me to my question, is this going to be an issue for even extraction? Is it enough to be worth replacing in this machine bracket?
TL;DR: Do my poorly machined shower screens need to be replaced?
The upper or lower section of the shower screen? It should come apart and be in 2 pieces, if it's not that might be why. If so the answer is yes it needs the holes. You might try soaking it in boiling water and Cafetto powder first to see if that does anything, but they're not prohibitively expensive if you can find them.
It's both sections of the screen, a bunch of holes weren't fully punched when the screen was manufactured, so there's a few partial holes with the sheet metal centers held on by 'sprues', and holes that appear to not have been punched through at all, where one side is indented and on the reverse it's a smooth metal surface.
I'll have look on eBay for them, looks like the part number for the upper screens changed between the 6910 & 7000, but I'd assume they're compatible given the lowers are the same. Unless I can find a way to punch holes that fine through stainless
I don't think the uppers are compatible from memory but I'm no expert. Also it's best not to clean small holes like the slower screen or baskets with pins or needles that have a tapered point as you will enlarge the hole slightly, which affects the flow rate. If the machine cane with a cleaning tool they usually have what look like pins but are cylindrical and smaller OD than the holes. Otherwise use a toothbrush or similar.
Yeah I'll avoid the 7k series for the uppers, may even aim for a 'donor' machine to get more spares for since a screen set of dubious quality is ~$40 and dead machines run for around that mark
Also thank you for the heads up, I have the tool but switched to a needle for the inner since its holes are too fine for the included tool, I'll stick to a toothbrush for that since the bristles are so fine