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Thread: Are old lever machines collectors items?

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    Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I live in a country town in Victoria, and there is a local store that is currently used as a takeaway chinese joint. I popped in for some fried rice the other night, and got talking to the lady behind the counter about the Gaggia coffee machine in the corner.

    I think it is one of these (or at least quite similair) - see attached. I asked if I could take a look at the machine, and she kindly let me behind the counter. Aparently the shop used to be used as a dine in fish and chippery, and the machine was used to serve the diners a post fish and chip brew.

    The lever handles were not attached (? missing) and the steam arm had been chopped off (???). The group handles were both there. The machine looks in a pretty bad state, but looked like it was mostly all there appart from those items already mentioned.

    It is certainly a thing of beauty (and Im sure not function) - at least from my perspective. Are these old machines collectors items, or scapyard junk? If the former, Id like to do a bit more research, perhaps with a view to making the owner an offer for the thing, and making it a winter project to clean it up. I dont imaging bringing it back into service would be the objective, rather just clean her up as a display piece if they are desirable.

    Any tips on where on the net I might find some info about these old machines? Any tips on era, models etc.

    Tim




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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    the other side


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?


    Try these two sites
    http://www.espresso-restorations.com/
    http://www.home-barista.com/forums/restoration-of-olympia-cremina-t464.html


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Yes there are enthusiasts who restore(or want to restore) levers, in fact yours truly wishes he had popped in for some fried rice :) so if you decide its not for you pls PM me.
    Lever people seem to hang out on the HB lever forum. http://www.home-barista.com/forums/l...c6a5d89348ac6e

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I have an old lever at home, they open your way of thinking about espresso to a whole other area. With the extraction from a spring lever, the pressure of the spring drops gradually as the spring opens. What this means is that in an espresso extraction, the brew pressure is actually dropping while your espresso pours. This gives the soft brew at the end of the espresso. They also pressurize the water with a piston (arguably) giving better water dispertion.
    Many lever owners swear by them and prefer the espresso from a lever than a pump machine. As a lever owner myself I think they are a great buy, I use mine everyday and look forward to the process as much or more than the espresso, but be prepared for lots of waiting around(due to lack of pressure relief valves).

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    OK, tonight I asked the guy if he wanted to sell the coffee machine, and his reply was how much? SO I guess that is a yes. I had a good look and can confirm it is the same as the .pdfs in this thread.

    Can anyone identify the machine?

    What would be the going price for such a machine in complete (without having looked at the inside!), but not working order?

    What about post restoration in working order?




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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 39223A287D7B7D744D0 link=1212893601/5#5 date=1273487178
    OK, tonight I asked the guy if he wanted to sell the coffee machine, and his reply was how much? SO I guess that is a yes. I had a good look and can confirm it is the same as the .pdfs in this thread.

    Can anyone identify the machine?

    What would be the going price for such a machine in complete (without having looked at the inside!), but not working order?

    What about post restoration in working order?


    I am always looking as would love a lever to restore..

    As to a going price.. How long is a piece of string ? $1K could be a great BUY or ya could be tossing $990 down the drain...

    The price is not only dependant on operation but its external condition and status of any and all visual aids...

    Most parts are no longer available; so it becomes a real labour of love and dont expect to get ya monies back..

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 66494042556A46494640424A424953270 link=1212893601/6#6 date=1273487899
    status of any and all visual aids...
    AM - what are visual aids in this context?

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Gaggia groups are massive, they look absolutely marvellous. PM me if you wish and I can put you onto a Gaggia lever tech here in Melbourne. He would be the one to have a chat to.

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    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 233820326761676E570 link=1212893601/5#5 date=1273487178
    Can anyone identify the machine?
    Gaggia America - late 1950s.

    Quote Originally Posted by 233820326761676E570 link=1212893601/5#5 date=1273487178
    What would be the going price for such a machine in complete (without having looked at the inside!), but not working order?
    As AM said, it really does depend on the condition and what its worth to you.

    Quote Originally Posted by 233820326761676E570 link=1212893601/5#5 date=1273487178
    What about post restoration in working order?
    One went for $5.2k very recently. *Dont get over excited by that figure - a lot of hours and $$s would have gone into the restoration.

    PS: They are loaded with ASBESTOS!

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    To the right person LOTS even non working providing it the bodywork is in OK knock and the PFs are there etc. Potentially around $1k+ if it makes the bay of evil and yes it is collectable. Expect to get I guess $2-3+ restored to the righ person but its a potential can of worms. The element is the main thing and if thats gone and NLA you will need to have one made as a special. So if it is not working then that is a possibility. Also possible you would need to allow $3-500 worth of PSTAT and electronics to bring it up to spec depending on the current boiler control method.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 455E465401070108310 link=1212893601/7#7 date=1273488369
    Quote Originally Posted by 66494042556A46494640424A424953270 link=1212893601/6#6 date=1273487899
    status of any and all visual aids...
    AM - what are visual aids in this context?
    Perspex and other visuals that enhance the look etc..

    Cracked and or missing and the value can drop.

    Then just like paintings and furniture etc etc *True collectors get very touchy when non standard parts get used... Or things are polished and refurnished..

    If ya looking to get a cheep deal and make a killing... *I would re asses your position.

    If ya got the skills, time, workshop etc etc And want a project to keep ya off the streets.. *Then go for it boots and all. Why, you might ask ? Well in this case the dollars do not matter, it is about having a passion.


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Dennis is correct- the machine you pictured is gaggia America. I have a single lever version of the same machine awaiting restoration. Beware the asbestos insulation fitted in these machines. The one you are looking at may have been overhauled at some time and have had the asbestos removed. But if it hasnt been overhauled -then it will have asbestos insulation....

    A two group machine- fully restored could possibly be worth as much as seven thousand dollars I should expect- on the right day. All depends on the state of the machine.

    These things are so well built it is quite likely it can be fully restored to full functionality.

    I doubt the levers were chopped off- they are probably floating around somewhere. the can be removed quite easily- and were probably taken off to make room.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 38233B297C7A7C754C0 link=1212893601/0#0 date=1212893587
    It is certainly a thing of beauty (and Im sure not function) - at least from my perspective. I dont imaging bringing it back into service would be the objective, rather just clean her up as a display piece if they are desirable.
    They are definitely a thing of function not just beauty. And it would be a crime to restore it only cosmetically and not functionally...Dont make me call the cops on ya ;)

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Thanks all for replies.

    Quote Originally Posted by 06292022350A26292620222A222933470 link=1212893601/11#11 date=1273492417
    Perspex and other visuals that enhance the look etc..

    Cracked and or missing and the value can drop.

    Then just like paintings and furniture etc etcTrue collectors get very touchy when non standard parts get used... Or things are polished and refurnished..
    The art deco looking perspex shown in the .pdf is not on this machine, there is perspex fence for the cup warmer, but it is orange and flat.

    Quote Originally Posted by 25222629212B3E2E2920470 link=1212893601/10#10 date=1273488964
    the bodywork is in OK knock and the PFs are there
    The general condition of the panels seems OK, and both portafilters are there. They are still stored in the group.

    The lever handles are not attached to the machine, but may be kicking around in the shop somewhere. I said Id visit again to speak with the owner further about the machine when he wasnt busy. Obviously not ideal if they are missing, but given they simply screw in with a thread, Im sure you could turn something quite nice to suit.

    Quote Originally Posted by 06292022350A26292620222A222933470 link=1212893601/11#11 date=1273492417
    If ya looking to get a cheep deal and make a killing...I would re asses your position.

    If ya got the skills, time, workshop etc etc And want a project to keep ya off the streets..Then go for it boots and all.Why, you might ask ?Well in this case the dollars do not matter, it is about having a passion.
    Im not interested in this for money. But I also dont have the skills to see such a project through. Im interested in the restoration project, but havent really cut my teeth on something less complicated before. The most complicated things Ive done inside a commercial coffee machine is clear a solenoid, replace a steam arm, adjust pump and boiler pressure! This would be a big step. While Im interested in the process, and the satisfaction that would come from the end result - I simply couldnt keep it anyway.

    Anyone got any ideas about how this machine, if I can get it for a relatively cheap price, could be used by the coffeesnob community?

    I was thinking of some sort of collective restoration and sale with profits to faircrack or something?

    Be nice if there was a coffeesnob shed!

    Maybe it should just be left in the time capsule that is this Chinese takeaway in Country Victoria.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I have been told that there were three different versions of the gaggia America plexiglass surround. Otherwise it may be a slightly different model... I seem to remember seeing a very similar model - with the same side panels.

    The levers dont only screw on- they have a tensioned steel spring (for want of a better name) part that would be difficult to knock up. However I am sure if the rest of the machine was ok- it will be possible to obtain some replacement Gaggia levers. I believe that type of group was widely used over a reasonable period and spares- even new parts are available.


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Ive been told the Gaggia lever group has remained the same over the years. I presume the Italian group. I think the Spanish uses different seals. The Gaggia group uses a geared arrangement, the rack being no longer available, so Im told. Coffeeparts over on the left lists Gaggia lever parts but not the rack.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    you should not have left the shop without it .........

    grab a big fist full of $50s and get back down there right now!!!

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    How much does he want for it in the current condition? Have you made an offer?

  20. #20
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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    How much is he askin :-?
    Tell im es dreamin ;D

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 03363B3C08143831313232570 link=1212893601/19#19 date=1276126640
    How much is he askin :-? *
    Tell im es dreamin *;D
    This is going straight to the pool room.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Any developments TimO?

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Interesting Calimari 2 Group Lever Handle Espresso Machine


    On the Gold Coast in Qld, *just went from Auction to Buy it now for $1000...


    You know where and how to find.....If some one wants it badly enough... *And needs it to be picked up...


    I am happy to do a run down for a coffee or two.... *

    As to how you get it from my place to where ever; is another matter....


    PS.. Item is a bit suss as to real condition .. Seller does an auction and then just before the 24hrs is up.. Stops and changes to a Buy it Now, after he has tested the market.. Did with all his items.. So I guess about $1k is about what people have offered..



    "Hi there, it has been sitting in storage for a year and prior to that was fully overhauled by a Newcastle coffee repair company. I believe he was unable to get a new spring so he shut off the head with the dodgy spring, but it is a lovely little machine. He did say though he would be able to get it going but would take some time to locate the part, as it was going into my home I didnt need both heads and decided to fast track the process and get it finished. I have since moved to Qld and it has not been used.

    It will need a flush and that is simply done by turning it on and emptying the water. "


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I had a laugh i thought it had gone

    someone kicked off the bid @ $100 after he listed it bid from $100 or Buy it now $1000

    must have canceled the bid and re-listed it @ 1k BIN only.....

    i hate bid canceling

  25. #25
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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I have spied this one on sale for a cool 15 K
    1959 La Pavoni il concorso espresso machine

    KK




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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2428212C2C25490 link=1212893601/23#23 date=1276904284
    1k BIN only.....

    i hate bid canceling
    The wombat had some valid bids and seems it would have reached a sensible price given it only has one working group too >:(

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 5156525D555F4A5A5D54330 link=1212893601/25#25 date=1276912793
    The wombat had some valid bids and seems it would have reached a sensible price given it only has one working group too
    My son sold his car through The Bay with a 1 cent opening bid.
    He had plenty of emails offering bids and asking for him to close the bidding early.
    He persevered and got a decent price.
    No need for funny business if you know what youre doing.

    He reasoned that all those trying to circumvent the system would be forced to bid and so up the final price.


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Now in Super Wobat territory as he is now selling a Calimari 2 Group Lever Handle Espresso PMSL ;D

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    what kind of name is Calimari for a coffee machine!!

    methinks it is called a Carimali... small change makes big difference...

  30. #30
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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I think the Calamari is an 8 group.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I sent him a question and he was cool with a courier picking it up, but yeah he has gone and canceled the auction.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 0E322F343E3F283D353E5A0 link=1212893601/29#29 date=1276927301
    I think the Calamari is an 8 group.
    ;D ;D ;D Brilliant ;D ;D ;D

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 09382F3637303B3620590 link=1212893601/31#31 date=1276942207
    Quote Originally Posted by 0E322F343E3F283D353E5A0 link=1212893601/29#29 date=1276927301
    I think the Calamari is an 8 group.
    ;D ;D ;D Brilliant *;D ;D ;D
    Slaps self around head with dirty wet group cloth...


    I just got it :-X :-X :-X


    Its teh glasses and teh back pain, I tell ya.... Dammed Renzo and Mike had me running this way and that, up stairs and back again for milk and teh Eureka Mignon :D

    Worse still is Mike and I could still not hold him to a GRINDER :o :P OLD or NEW and some even have levers ;)

  34. #34
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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 6C504D565C5D4A5F575C380 link=1212893601/29#29 date=1276927301
    I think the Calamari is an 8 group.
    I reckon he might be related to the dude selling the Gaggia Achille - which will test your "barrister" skills.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Or the Faema Faemina, who plugged " IT INTO POWER THE POINT AND NOTHING HAPPENEND"

    Spelling mistakes and ebay, oh, how many can we find?

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Sorry to keep returning to this thread - shows how often I resort to eating from this joint.

    Today I uncovered the missing levers and so I made him an offer and will await a reply - he needed to consult with co-owner but his eyes seemed to light up - perhaps I started too high!

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    What price did you offer? ::)

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    I think Ill keep that to myself, but it was nothing like the figures being quoted here!

    The other amazing this is that I found another one! Identical in a neighbouring town about 30km away, and it is in even better condition.

    Would make a fantastic pair for restoration in term of parts availability.

    If this all falls through, Ill declare my hand and let the sharks with deeper pockets know where to find them.

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    would you take a finders fee.......


    come one Timo just buy them and post pics, stop mucking about ;D


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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 7E657D6F3A3C3A330A0 link=1212893601/37#37 date=1288040690
    let the sharks
    Who us ;D

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 6A666F62626B070 link=1212893601/38#38 date=1288043973
    would you take a finders fee.......
    Sure will, via the open market.

    I shouldnt get my hopes up. My phone didnt ring today - offer rejected? :(

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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Quote Originally Posted by 3D263E2C797F7970490 link=1212893601/40#40 date=1288079447

    I shouldnt get my hopes up. My phone didnt ring today - offer rejected? :(
    thats the reverse sweat method, they keep you waiting.

    the question i show long do you / they wait .....



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    Re: Are old lever machines collectors items?

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    im flying to victoria to check every chinese joint wihtin 200km of "moe" :D



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