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Thread: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

  1. #1
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    Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    just wondering ;) what kind of price were looking at to fix a pump on a dual-purpose single boiler home machine???
    i might be able to get hold of one (Faema), but will only consider it if the repair wouldnt be crazy.
    thanks so much!

    aaron

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    ok spoke to chris @ talk who put me on to pedro at CPs.
    wonderful help from you both.
    thanks VERY much.
    so i have been helped and no longer need any (debatable if you ask my missus)

    i also found sparkys thread on his heavily modded Family. great read and what a heap of effort

    aaron

  3. #3
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    ahem.. me again, just replying to myself. no dont worry about it. its ok, i dont really mind. really im fine. please go about your business and ill manage to get through just fine all by myself. no really. yes of course ill be fine, you just carry on with your very important lives and ill just sit here typing to myself clutching tightly onto a fleeting fantasy that there is someone out there who may care enough to reply. or even just someone wholl listen. maybe ill get a cat, they listen i think. maybe then i wont need to sit on CS anymore and have my hopes dashed like this again.

    THAT WAS FUN

    Got me a Faema Family at a reasonable price and im bleeding excited. will have to investigate this air lock issue...hope theres not big $ involved!

    aaron

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    This thread has been viewed 35 times, so I think its fair to say that we are listening. Its also fair to say that there arent as many Faema owners here as, say, Rancilio or ECM, so our answer may be similar to that which you would get from a cat - inscrutable.....

    Congratulations on the purchase - let us know how you get on with it. :)

  5. #5
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    Its probably more to the fact that rocknee has already discussed this with a couple of the most knowledgeable people in the country and I dont know that many of us could add anything very useful to what either Chris or Pedro would have offered.... :-?

    Mal.

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    oh dear, i believe that the absence of emoticons has diminished the impact of my sarcasm somewhat (smiley face emoticon here)

    i appreciate the comforting but there really only was one half of an iota of sincerity in my last response. the quick reply box limits how much of my true self can be seen (read) by my fellow coffee lovers...oh the error in my ways, always looking for that quick solution to a complex problem.

    vivianne i will definitely let you know how i go. and mal - i would agree with you re chris and pedros expertise (but dont sell yourself short mr). pick up my family tomorrow after work and then i have no idea what to do with him/her (i havent yet decided). i guess ill try and give the air lock issue a fix if that actually is the problem (and i really hope it is) my darling wasnt impressed that i have two "expensive" krups under our bed, and a gaggia that works fine.

    i tried to justify that i paid the same for the gaggia but that this was a jump in quality for no price jump...still unimpressed...

    aaron, drinking a sourish thin doppio piccolo latte from beans that are too fresh

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    A Dog is a far better choice than a cat of all things...........

  8. #8
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    im living at my in laws at the moment who have a little-ish white-ish dog whose constant licking of feet (mine and other humans) is highly annoying. otherwise hes ok, but ive never seen a cat with a licking issue...

  9. #9
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    ok, so i think im gonna do a grendel and sparky and tear apart my boiler on the Family and see how ugly it is inside. THEN im going to take lots of fotos and try to rebuild the pump, which i think (and pray) is the only issue needing attention.

    this is the plan for now. tonight that may all change, but for now...

    aaron

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    good luck :D
    we will try to answer any difficult questions.
    they are a top machine

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    ok fix..here comes some questions:
    i pulled apart basically everything, pump boiler, group head and 3-way solenoid. got a bit carried away but glad i did. no real gunk in the boiler but definite dark crusty bits.

    all wires (obviously) are off.
    1. do i just soak the whole lot (boiler group head and element (not the top, where the electrodes are) in cafetto?

    2. anything to do with the 3 way? i have only taken off the body to reveal the inner shaft which looks clean.

    thats all for tonight. will post some pics soon

    thanks guys

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    I was referring to a real dog, not those tiny little yapping things that look something like a rat gone wrong

    Ray.

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    hi rokne
    when you say i pulled apart almost everything, does that meen you ripped them all out of the machine, or that you ripped em all out and disassemble these components.
    graham

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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    hi graham,
    i pulled apart the boiler (i guess this is disassembling) and have soaked (so far) the group head and element in citric acid o/night which worked a treat. the boiler is now sitting in the same solution reheated.

    i decided that since i cant get into the pump (it has viborpompecity 1984 written on it) i thought id make a last ditch effort at reviving it and have dumped that in the citric acid bath too. if it works, then great, if not, then ive lost nothing anyway.

    Q: should i dump the 3-way into the citric bath too? or would i potentially be damaging it? (i guess pics would be helpful here, eh?)

    cheers
    aaron

  15. #15
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    ok heres some pics of some cleaned up parts just having soaked in citric acid and given it some elbow grease...
    in this first pic u can see a bit of the pre-cleaned group head



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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    heres some clean pics




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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    boiler


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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    element


  19. #19
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    now for a question:
    i thought with the machine apart that i would maybe soak the 3 way in citric acid solution as well.

    can i just immerse the part on the left of the pic? and will citric harden or ruin any rubber o rings?

    cheers for your help

    aaron


  20. #20
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    and im going to have to order a new pump as the oldie has gracefully carked it. vibe in peace

  21. #21
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    Quote Originally Posted by roknee link=1205799779/15#18 date=1206786677
    now for a question:
    i thought with the machine apart that i would maybe soak the 3 way in citric acid solution as well.

    can i just immerse the part on the left of the pic? and will citric harden or ruin any rubber o rings?

    cheers for your help

    aaron
    Better to soak this in Caffeto/Espresso Clean Aaron as most of the gunk within the valve orifices will be organic (rancid coffee remains). The problem with using any type of acid, even a mild one like Citric, is that it will etch the internals of the valve surfaces :o and may cause operational problems down the track.

    All the best mate :),
    Mal.

  22. #22
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    cafetto it is.
    thanks mal

  23. #23
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    my machine is clean and ready and awaiting a new pump and some bits. hopefully tues night ill reassemble me new baby and start pulling shots.

    will post pics..

    BIG thanks to all those who helped out, and a special shout out to sparky and pedro.
    i have to say that i was VERY close to calling a service shop to fix er up, and then considered what the bill would look like and thought id have a go myself.
    im glad i did and with your help and inspiration, ive totaly dis/re-assembled, cleaned, scrubbed, replaced, etc and im damn excited to see this baby in action.

    more to come...

  24. #24
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    hi
    before soaking the three way valve in coffee cleaner,
    remove the two orings,
    undo the shaft from the base taking note of the order of piston and spring,
    wipe off excess coffee inside brass base then soak.
    with wet and dry sandpaper clean the bottom of the base.
    this is best done with the sandpaoper wet, with warm water, and laid on a flat surface, then take the base and place on sandpaper and rub to and fro. this will clean the bottom surface and make it more even, giving a better seal on the orings when refitted.

    do this also on the boiler oring faces

  25. #25
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    Re: PLEEEEEAAASE help me!!

    thanks very much fix!

  26. #26
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    Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    well well well,
    parts from COFFEEPARTS arrived within 28 hours (from syd)! i just have to say that Pedro has been wonderful from the word go.; very quick to respond to emails and phone calls and he threw in some group head gasket spacers for down the track free. amazing service, really.

    MODS: can i change the title of this thread to something like "The Family Is Alive" or "Faema back on its femur" *or *"Faema Fantastico"?? the desperate plee for help in the title no longer applies...

    so shes up and running, ran through a couple of shots using old beans to season and test the 3-way.
    3-way seemed to do its job but not 100% so will chemical backflush and see if that helps.

    the steam tip leaks a bit of steam from where it joins the arm (the screw thread).

    she runs hot (I think) but have to play a little.

    I will probably need some help in working out OPV adjustments *soon.

    THANK YOU *to everyone who has helped get this thing working again. im like a little school boy (i EVEN pushed off having my lunch when the parts arrived, and believe me, it takes something pretty significant for that to happen)

    u ppl are wonderful

    aaron

  27. #27
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    thanks mods for changing the title of the thread!

  28. #28
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    Youre welcome roknee.... :)

    Mal.

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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    well, pics are due but i have to say that i havent been totally happy (what is total happiness though) with the results in the cup.

    admittedly i havent been using the best beans i think and thats an issue, and i also spent quite some time working out opv tweaking which I think (and hope) is about right based on the fluid o tech pressure chart (175ml/min from memory)

    initially getting burnt tasting or very bitter espresso but realised that i was pulling shots DURING boiler cycling..whoops.

    have now got a good routine which involves a 4 or 5 sec flush right after the thermostat clicks off.

    Im getting a new tamper today and will swing past veneziano for something fresh (thats beans wushoes - not you) and will skip all the way home to try this combo out.

    pics are due any minute now...

  30. #30
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    look forward to checking it out aaron

  31. #31
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    sorry i havent got any pics up here yet...the battery charger to my camera is nowhere to be found (were in b/w houses ATM).

    BUT I AM REALLY STRUGGLING
    to achieve nice pours.
    i have updosed, downdosed, changed tamping technqiues, changed dosing and distribution technqiues etc...(and yes, fresh beans)...

    early on in the piece i played with the OPV settings and think i have achieved optimal setting BUT i would LOVE to get hold of a pf gauge to confirm brew pressure.

    I am not in a position to go out a purchase one and was wondering if ANYBODY has one that I could borrow for a few hours??

    im in caulfield melbourne.

    thanks heaps in advance.

    aaron

  32. #32
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    alrighty
    so played round with a pf guage today at work, and set pump pressure to max out at ~9.5 bar.
    pulled some shots to see if this would change my life.
    and it did (no! really?)
    she had been running to max out at ~12 BAR which is whati suspected all along.

    looking forward to dialing in some fresh bella when i get home.

    i WILL have to post some pics soon. been promising for a while now

    moral of the story? check brew pressure!!!

    aaron

  33. #33
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    after taking her home and pulling a few shots trying to dial in the grind, water stopped coming out of the group head.
    a lot of help from craig the techie at work and i replaced the 3 way shaft and shes up and running again. so alls well ATM!

    will have to wait til mon morning to dial in some concordia from work.

    thanks craig! (he doesnt visit CS but he still get kudos from me)

    aaron

  34. #34
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    i do owe some pics here
    but dialled in some Concordia (quickly) this morning. about 14 days post roast
    cant say it was too bad - pulled some double ristrettos - good acidity and sweetish as a shortie and cut through milk nicely in piccolo.

    on a side note, i LOVE grinding for ~ 23 secs per double.....

  35. #35
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    Re: Faema Family Project..... ITS ALIVE!!!!!

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    didnt manage to get a focused shot of the pour, but heres the result of some concordia tonight, about 20 days old. nice and syrupy, good acidity, still need to dial in properly.






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