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Thread: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Good?

  1. #1
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    Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Good?

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

    I have a Sunbeam Special thats starting to play up and was going to get something like a Saeco Royal Expresso Machine, but from what Ive been reading, they just arent as good as getting an automatic with a grinder?

    I think its mainly the ease that I find appealing, stumbling down the steps to the kitchen in the morning the last thing Im capable of doing is making a great expresso (I even burn the toast! :-/) so...

    Is the Saeco Royal (Looking at spending no more than $1200) the way to go? Is the Gaggia Syncrony Logic Espresso as good? Is there something else I should be considering?

    THANK you for your suggestions! ;) HELP HELP!

    Marcel.

  2. #2
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    The subject of fully automatics has been covered in many posts here. Why not search back and therell be much material to help you arrive at a conclusion. The short answer to your question may well be: if you cant make a great espresso....dont look to a fully automatic to do it for you.

    Robusto

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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    We have a Saeco fully automatic machine at work. The coffee tastes like dirt. Really, if you like coffee, then you should spend your budget on a Rocky / Silvia set up. If you cant be bothered to make it, I reckon a moka pot or a french press (plunger) is a much better (and cheaper) way to go than a fully automatic machine. If you really want to spend some money, an investment in a grinder will improve your french press / moka pot hugely. I get much better coffee from a plunger than from the Saeco fully automatic (bleurgh!)

  4. #4
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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    Gentlemen.

    Automatics just are not that bad. They have their place.

    If coffee from an automatic tastes liie dirt, then may I respectfully suggest that either
    a) the beans used are not up to scratch or
    b) the setup of the individual automatic machine is wrong wrong wrong.

    Its as simple as that. A well set up automatic makes quite a palatable and mellow brew albeit, nowhere near as strong or as full bodied as the same coffee made with a conventional "manual" espresso machine. In fact well set up automatics actually set the scene for clients to transcend from being sweet brown coloured milk drinkers to appreciate the finer things in life and that is, to start them on the road to appreciating black espresso. It "eases" them in.

    And really, all coffee made with stovetop moka pots is burned through due to the working principle of passing pressurised boiling water & steam through the grinds and in my honest opinion, I would take the well set up auto coffee over the moka pot coffee any day....I hate and detest burned coffee with a passion....but I will accept, that is up to the individual.

    So. After all the above it basically comes down to the individuals likes and dislikes and one last point and that is reliability in service.

    There are lots of johnnycomelately autos on the market and if there is one thing I have learned since my company first pioneered the importation of autromatic espresso machines (domestic & commercial) into Australia in the early 90s, its to be distrustfuil of all new models until they have been around long enough to prove their reliability rate (or rate of failure of you like). Many models/brands have proven to be total disasters in this respect so the choice has to be made very carefully.

    Read a reply I made in another thread in here somewhere in just the last few days regarding reliability of automatics, and which recommendation (if any) I may have made there.

    Regardz,
    FC.

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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    I went to a Silvia Rocky Combination with the Base, for about $1279 from Barazi Bezzera Coffee Machines

    Mmmmm!! :D

    After a day or two of playing with it, reading posts, it now makes a wonderful coffee. And I have yet to take the free training they offered me, wonderful!

    It is a TERRIFIC grinder, and it is a wonderful machine. The only thing I can think of is that it goes through water use pretty fast and Im still trying to figure out the button in the middle, the boiler refill? Whats it for?

    Marcel.

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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    I believe its the hot water switch - open up the steam valve and youll get hot water out the wand.

    Just be careful because it comes out under quite a bit of pressure and can spray out of whatever you put under it.

    Adrian

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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    Quote Originally Posted by marcelteaching link=1133761079/0#4 date=1134080787
    The only thing I can think of is that it goes through water use pretty fast....?

    Marcel.
    Hi Marcel,

    Maybe youre already doing this but if not, grab yourself one of the well known branded water filter jugs, or better, and ensure that you only use this filtered water in Miss Silvia. It will repay you many times over in the production of great coffee, and help to limit the build-up of mineral deposits in the Boiler, Steam Valve and elsewhere.

    Happy brewing,
    Mal.

  8. #8
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie seeks help - Are Fully Automatics No Go

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Good advice, Mal. Prevention is much less messier than cure. Scale build up inside the plumping and boiler in coffee machines is invisible, but the effects over time can be quite tangible.

    How can you tell if limescale is being removed from the boiler?

    Id suggest descaling an electric jug, and using filtered water in both it and the coffee machine. In our place, the jug and coffee machine use about the same amount of water.

    A nice bright heating element in the jug should be indicative of conditions inside the boiler.

    If the element starts to go a rusty brown.... not good. Suspect the filter is not working properly.

    Filtered water will also remove impurities and some additives like chlorine which do nothing positive for coffee taste.

    Robusto



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