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Thread: 2 weeks with a Classika

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    2 weeks with a Classika

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    The Classika is a German made single boiler machine. I was lucky enough to have one on loan for 2 weeks. Unfortunately I cannot buy one yet. Even if I could I would have to sell my Venus first ...

    Little picture:

    So this is similar to the Isomac Zaffiro or the Domobar Levetta.

    700ml boiler
    2 hole steam arm
    Weight sensitive kill switch for when there is not enough water.
    E61 group head
    Pressure gauge

    The Classika isnt a flashy machine. Very German. Externally, it is definitely better made than other high end single boilers. It feels like a more solid machine, everything is nicely rounded so there are no sharp bits, nice solid steam arm, the toggle switches are sealed with rubber, and the steel just looks and feels better. Comparatively the Levetta is a little flimsy looking. Well, the black one is.

    Ive had a look internally, in this regard its is probably on par with other high end single boilers.

    When I got home the first time, I set it up and gave it 30 min warm up time. I randomly checked the temp of the water just under the grouphead, over the course of 2-3 hours (I was playing Zelda on Wii), the temp was always at 95 C after about 5-7s flushing. I couldnt mount my thermocouple on the handle so I was flipping the machine on and counting thousands.

    Then I went and pulled a few shots. I did 3 doubles in a row (I pulled them all first, then drank them). The boiler light tends to come on between shots, but goes off quite soon. I measured the temp when I flushed a little between shots. Count 5-7 thousands and its 95C every time. The shots were pretty good too!

    On to steaming. After flipping the steam switch, its up to speed within 20 seconds. Theres a lot of power here. I can leave a 600ml jug on the drip tray, position the steam arm just right, and open the value. A few seconds later, pretty much spot on milk. I managed to do 2 in a row this way. Same results each time. I reckon at least a third is possible, but that is a lot of milk to drink. So I stopped there.

    Over the course of 2 weeks, it proved very consistent. The weight sensitive kill switch engaged a couple of times. This works well. There is a little bit of water in the tank still when it engages so it isnt silly and just calibrated to the weight of the water tank. The drip tray is generous but not quite as large as my Venus. But youre not flushing much, so this was never an issue in the 2 weeks I had it. The size would be comparable to the Levetta I think. But there are these little legs on the bottom that make it a little taller.

    So this has supplanted the Levetta as the machine I would buy if I did it all again. There is no easy access to the thermostat or OPV that I can find, but I dont think messing with them is beneficial. The steam arm is also more sensible than the Levetta, and the kill switch for the water tank is nice. Also, it looks better.

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Great mail thanks - I'm looking at picking one up next week so appreciated your write up.

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