Good one Paolo..... 8-)
Last week I bit the bullet and ordered a box (6 square metres) of 19mm thick *Armaflex HT. Yesterday I used some of it to lag (cover) the boiler on my Futurmat 2 group.
I am only sorry that I didnt do it sooner.
Last weekend I replaced the diaphragm in my machines pressurestat and measured the duty cycle of the heating element which was as follows:-
Heating element on:- 50 seconds
Heating element off:- 250 seconds (these measurements were the average taken of the machine once fully warmed at idle over 6 readings)
After covering the boiler with Armaflex the readings were taken in the same way:-
Heating element on:- 50 seconds
Heating element off:- 710 seconds
This is a huge reduction in heater element activity (read power consumption).
It also appeals to me that associated electrics are no longer exposed to boiler heat as before. If I turn the machine off it still retains heat to the tune of 65C 6 hours later, which means it is really quick to get up to speed if turned on again at this time. From a startup where the water is at room temperature, the machine is fully-warmed up in 10 minutes less than before insulation.
After installation I havent noticed any new smells and if you read the safety information on the Armacell website you wouldnt expect to either. It has no shards like asbestos or glass fibre and is safe to contact materials that have an operating temperature of 150C with spikes up to 175C.
I am impressed!!
Good one Paolo..... 8-)
Mal will this mod work the DG
I was told to leave the slots on top of my machine unblocked to allow for
1) heat to escape
2) keep cups warm
Based on Paolos info this could be to keep the electrics cool so if the boiler is insulated the electrics would stay cooler due to less radiated heatOriginally Posted by 7C4D4340432C0 link=1234688068/0#0 date=1234688068
I have some insulating foam but am reluctant to fit it
So any chance of getting hold of some of the 6m2 sheet????
Thanks, Mal....you can probably gather that I am really happy with the results.
KK, just be sure that the foam that you use is safe ie. no fumes, shards etc. Is it temperature rated? The Armaflex HT is actually designed as a heat insulation material. What sort of foam do you have?
Hi Moto Coffee....I used less than 1m2 to do my boiler. Just pm me if you would like some Armaflex HT.
I dont think Paolo insulated the internal surface of the s/s panels, etc.... Just the Boiler itself. It is, as you have pointed out, highly detrimental to insulate the internal panel-work surfaces.Originally Posted by 67434A4A49497367435F41432C0 link=1234688068/2#2 date=1234749874
Whether you want to attempt this with your Bezz DG will probably have more to do with its current warranty status as doing this may be grounds for refusing to uphold the warranty.... Unless you can get permission from your vendor in writing of course....
Mal is of course correct. It was only the boiler that I insulated.
Originally Posted by 1D30343835590 link=1234688068/5#5 date=1234777722
Yes I only want to insulate the boiler also
It just the correlation between the heat generated by the naked boiler and the open slots go hand in hand
I will take a drive to Barazi and ask Jack I have to return a PF basket to them and ask some questions while I am there
Paolo the foam is for steam pipes so it should be ok I think??Originally Posted by 0938363536590 link=1234688068/4#4 date=1234777071
Armaflex makes HT in sheets (like I have) and also in tubular form to cover pipes. The specs state that the Armaflex HT is designed and rated to thermally insulate objects that have a temperature of (up to and including ) 150C.
The rep. told me that it will be effective at temperature spikes up to 175C.
Maybe Jack will be able to tell you what temperature espresso boilers surfaces typically reach.
Its not a good idea to insulate any pipework involved in the thermosyphon/HX circuit as this will alter the thermodynamics of the machine, maybe even to the stage where it becomes unusable. Insulating the pipework to the Steam Valve should be OK though.
Im not sure what you mean exactly here mate? Are you referring to a reduction in cup warming capability? If so, you are correct; the top of the machine (and interior space) will run cooler as Paolo mentioned, mainly as one justification for doing it in the first place. If cup warming on top of the machine is important to you, then insulating the Boiler may not suit you....It just the correlation between the heat generated by the naked boiler and the open slots go hand in hand
Sorry what I meant was the design of the machine enables heat is to escape past the slots on top to keep the electrics inside the casing cool as well as cup warmingOriginally Posted by 4F62666A670B0 link=1234688068/9#9 date=1234879967
If I was to insulate it would be the boiler only
Reducing the on/off nature of the element will hopefully extend its life along with associated switches
I dont use the top of the machine for cup storage/warming
Good point you raised about the HX circuit
Nice work.... do you have any pics???!?
Ill take the sides off the Futurmat when I get a few minutes and take some photos. The ones that I took last weekend were with a borrowed camera and are a bit fuzzy.
I took some more photos of the insulated boiler.
I used 5cm wide velcro rather than 2cm as it provides a MUCH greater support and also wont tear or "worry" the Armaflex HT like the 2cm velcro would tend to do.
And some more....
Nice photos Paulo, so you wrap some over the ends of the boiler first - say what about 3-4 inchs or so into the boiler from the ends, then wrap over the biggest part of the boiler and hold it all on with the straps? And before the wrapping cut with a blade long cuts to allow the lagging to fit over piping and then the velcro pushes the cut bits together?
Great looking job mate - if I can make mine look half that good, and like it hasnt been done by a rat making a nest I will be happy.
Maybe CS could do a distribution of ArmaFlex since 6m is an awful lot if you dont have need for anything other than boiler insulating.
I would think that 1m or possibly 0.5m would be enough for a prosumer/semi-commercial boiler. How much did you need Paolo?
Is the 5cm wide velcro just from Bunnings or similar Paulo?
I bought mine from "Spotlight".....which in NSW is the Bunnings equivalent of the material and haberdashery world.
For my 2 group I used the best part of 4 metres of this 5cm wide velcro. It was around $6/metre (for sharp and soft side). I also used a bit (less than a metre) of the 2cm velcro.
It is fabulous stuff....if you position the "sharp" velcro in ribs around the boiler, and secure the ends with a short section of the "soft" velcro......the whole lot can be secured in place by using a band of the "soft", located around the length of the boiler and secured at both ends with a short section of the "sharp" velcro........its not going to budge.
I covered the surface of the cylindrical section with a 3cm overhang of the Armaflex HT....the end pieces were cut basically in a circular shape. They were an interference fit into the cylindrical section. They were bound as one with the band of "soft" velcro that went around the length of the boiler.
I used approximately 70% of a metre to cover my boiler...which has a capacity of 13 litres.
Thanks Paul - much appreciated matey. We have the same Spotlight stores up here so thats where I will go.
Great job - have been thinking about this myself..
Is a box (around 6m) the minimum quantity you can buy, or would they have ~1m lots? Also, do you have a rough price for the stuff?
Thanks. It was an interesting project.
Yes...a box is the minimum amount you can buy.
I have some left if you are interested. Just PM me.
I got half a metre from Paolo and will be looking to apply this to the VBM in the near future - will post pics when Im done..
I have tried to get some of the Armaflex HT but Armacell advises that everyone is out of stock.
Can you tell me where you got yours?
Or, if you have any left, is there a chance that you would sell me a metre?
I bought mine from Armacell in Sydney.
When you rang, did they tell you when stocks will be replenished? (From memory the HT is manufactured in Germany.)
Sorry....I dont have any left.
Persevere though...the Armaflex HT is a beaut modification that gives all gains.
Thanks for your quick response.
The person that I spoke to knew of your purchase but neither he nor another person could give me any firm date for arrival of a new shipment. Perhaps some time in April....
The other factor is that they will only supply a whole box, which I think would be very expensive. Apparently it comes as a single continuous roll & retailers are unlikely to be prepared to cut & sell portions.
I have an ECM Giotto & its boiler is very small so I would not need much at all.
I like some-ones idea (yours?) of having it sold by Coffeesnobs.
I just did this today...not quite as neat as Paolos but its done! *Any the result is quick warm up from cold...and more importantly it takes 6.5 mins (could be more - that was an estimate) from the pressurestat clicking out to it clicking back in! *That is a great improvement and in reality it will most likely halve the leccy cost of running the machine.
Cheers and thanks Paolo (thanks also for the excellent wrapping of the AF at your end mate :))
Ok - stop watch this time....7 mins 47 seconds before pressurestat cuts in...then 55 seconds of boiling before it cuts out again....those times probably reflect the difference in boiler size between the FAEMA and the FM...ie Paolos figures show longer out time (thermally efficient larger water volume - 13 odd l boiler versus 11 for the FAEMA - or perhaps that my lagging does not fit quite like a glove like Paolos per his photos!!!).
So in seconds mine is...off time 450 odd seconds followed by 55 seconds on time. *The off time is about half the length of what it used to be pre-lagging.
Do you mean "twice the time" here Oz?Originally Posted by 62777E6E6279790D0 link=1234688068/27#27 date=1236848733
Sounds like you have reduced your machines footprint considerably...
Ya that had me as well.... Or it could be that the On time of teh heater elements is half of what it was...Originally Posted by 426F6B676A060 link=1234688068/28#28 date=1236862795
Brisvags people always stuff up what they type ;) PEBKAC ;D
Mal - yep your spot on mate....so excited I couldnt convey what I really meant. The heater element stays off for about twice as long as it did pre-lag.
Paolo - thanks mate.
AM - the heater element might stay on for a shorter time, but I cant say anything accurate about that...think its about the same. *But, I have to say mate that maths isnt my strong point...in fact its lucky that I managed to convert minutes to seconds accurately:)
Yes, that was my thought and why I wondered a CS distribution of this stuff could be done (allow people to buy per 1mx0.5m allotments, perhaps).Originally Posted by 22011212193F24010E09050C600 link=1234688068/25#25 date=1236670580
I gave my VBM a jacket over the weekend - what a fiddly job! Had to take off a few things to get better access to the boiler...managed to put them back on the same way, too :P
Its made a marked improvement to the energy consumption - warmup time has been reduced from 1 hour to about 40 minutes, and once warmed up the previous 16s on, 2m30s off times have been reduced to 16s on, 3m45s off, or about a 50% improvement. Must be that the smaller the boiler (VBM has a 2.7L) the smaller the gain,but still impressive.
I ended up using less than half of the 0.5m2 sheet i had, so if anyone is interested in grabbing about 0.3m2 of this stuff, PM me and we can arrange it. It would be plenty to do a VBM or smaller size boiler.
Well done Mark!
Think also of the secondary benefit of much less heat exposure to electronic and electrical components that are close to the boiler.... and the subsequent damage over time that you have sidestepped with your VBM.
A possible unwanted side effect of insulating your boiler and the resulting dramatic reduction of the temp inside of the espresso machines case is that condensation/moisture from brewing/steaming/backflushing will not be dried out as it is with an uninsulated boiler. I can see this causing many problems with the electronics and the accelerated rusting of metal components if the condensation/water hangs around on the interior of the machine rather than quickly being evaporated off.
Java "Something to think about and keep an eye on" phile
I guess time will tell Java... :-?
I guess time will tell Java... :-? Although there are quite a few manufacturers who insulate the boilers from the get-go so it may not be a huge issue,
My Expobar Leva for example.Originally Posted by 05282C202D410 link=1234688068/37#37 date=1238226390
But in Javaphiles defence, that may have been taken into consideration with the overall design.
Indeed Mal. :) Im not by any means saying that it *will be a problem. However, given the designs and materials/components used on some machines I can see it potentially being a very nasty issue. Both from an electrical and a corrosion standpoint.Originally Posted by 6C41454944280 link=1234688068/37#37 date=1238226390
Under the light usage conditions of most home machines I dont see it being much of an issue at all on the electrical side and most likely only a minor one, years in the making, on the corrosion side of things.
Under heavy use conditions however I can see enough steam/water condensing/collecting (because the heat of the boiler is no longer there to dry/drive it off) for it to run/drip into places where it shouldnt oughtta be. :(
The next time you pull a shot and steam some milk watch where the little splashes go and where the steam when you purge and clear the wand go. Then imagine if those small spots of water and condensed steam werent driven off and you were doing cup after cup with a bit more water/condensation accumulating with every cup. On some (most?) machines it wont be a problem, while on others it will be a concern and will need an eye kept on it. :)
Java "Speaking of eyes I need to go close mine!" phile
Congratulations on doing what I never got around to. Also glad to hear that the 19mm stuff does the job. My sample of the 13mm thick Armaflex is still doing an excellent job on my NS and have enought left over to cover the next machine that Im getting going again.
Anyone still want some HT Armaflex? I do, and am contacting the supplier about it now.
Let me know if you want to share an order, and what thickness is prefered.
Its about $30 a square metre for the 19mm thickness, with 6m minimum order. Anyone want a metre?
Im quite keen for some. Ill edit this post once Ive got home tonight, measured the machine and figured out how much I need.
Could be a bugger to post it to WA though?
Id be interested in probably 1.5m of 19mm - need it for an 11litre boiler for the Faema. Our electricity prices here in Tas will have risen by nearly 20% in a bit over 18 months, so any benefits I can get Ill take :)
When do you plan on ordering, etc?
Gday Dane... :)Originally Posted by 50555A5101000705340 link=1234688068/41#41 date=1285215053
You can count me in for One Square Metre of 19mm mate. Very generous of you to offer to do this.... [smiley=thumbsup.gif]
Sounds like there is a bit of demand there. I will check out if it can be rolled for postage and let you know tomorrow. I will PM those interested with the postage costs and then if everyones happy Ill order this week. I still have to sus out when it would arrive from Armaflex, but should know that in the next day or two.
I am also interested, but the Pavoni only has a 4l boiler, so I will only need around .5M2
I am toying with the idea of insulating the bottom and sides only, and leaving (most of) the top uninsulated (The boiler is mounted upright). I figure this way I get the benefits of keeping heat away from all my electrical components, getting some better electricity consumption, but still keeping my cups warm.
I am in Sydney, btw.
Sorry for the slow response. I was really surprised when I asked the weight and they said 10-12kg for the 6m. So postage is going to be a little expensive. I estimate around $20-25 for 1m to Melbourne or Brisbane. $15 to Sydney. For others I am using a 25x25x100 box at a weight of 2kg for 1m. I am in 2535, but might pickup and post from Sydney. Let me know if your still keen given the high postage costs.