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Thread: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

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    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Carimali Uno - proud new owner

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

    an unexpected moment of more dollars than sense has led to me being the new owner of a Carimali Uno e. Thanks to CSer Dane.

    Having recently bought a BES900 I hardly needed it, but couldnt pass up the offer of a nice shiny commercial HX to also play with. I am just running it from a tank and place a little tray under where the waste hose should attach. I am dying to plumb it in but will need to negotiate with landlord and dont feel too confident that they will let me drill through their granite benchtop in order to do this.

    The shots from this are a lot more syrupy than the BES900. So far (day 1 for Uno) Im getting a better flavour from the BES900 but a much better syrup pour and mouthfeel from the Uno. Will be interesting to see as I get better at this machine how the flavour ends up measuring up.

    So what can people tell me about this machine? Do you have manuals/diagrams etc to share?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Well, shes now descaled. I was getting a pretty foul taste out of the steam arm and hot water tap, along with some tiny brown specks. Grabbed some descaler, followed Chris (Talk Coffee) instructions on descaling a HX and foul taste is now gone (along with the specks). Nice clear water coming out. Sat it on the bench to cool and then taste - quite neutral.

    I found it surprisingly easy to descale. Time consuming, but easy.

    So, tell me about my machine. I know very little about it really. Does anyone have any PDF goodies? (that I saw mentioned in other threads re: Carimali - Ive PMd a couple of snobs from those threads but yet to get a reply).

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    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Well, woke up this morning and the water sitting in the boiler all night had again taken on the smell and taste of previously.

    Have read about and now spoken with an expert and will try a few things before reporting back as to whether this becomes a full strip down or not.

    Is there anybody out there? To clarify, I dont want people doing my research for me - I enjoy that enough myself. I am after info in terms of manuals, service manuals, parts diagrams etc - if you have anything like this I would love you to share and Id be very appreciative.

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    Senior Member SniffCoffee's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    I always thought scale was white...are the brown specks something more sinister like rust...?* :-?*

    Or maybe theres a lot more scale in the boiler still?

    Whats the boiler made of?

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    Senior Member trentski's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    The boiler hasnt been tainted with milk has it?

    ie milk has been sucked back up the steam wand and into the boiler :(

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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Quote Originally Posted by 3630272C3631292B420 link=1317699490/4#4 date=1317793165
    The boiler hasnt been tainted with milk has it?
    ie milk has been sucked back up the steam wand and into the boiler :(
    If the machine has a vacuum breaker valve there may be milk in the wand, but it would be quite difficult for it to enter the boiler (if teh vacuum breaker is working). When even a slight vacuum is created (or even at atmospheric pressure) if the breaker valve is working then it opens and thee is no vacuum to pull milk that far.

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    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    I dont think the vacuum breaker was working. At atmospheric pressure and cold it was still closed. It took a bit of a push to make it open and there was a bit of gunk around it. Its all clean and shiny now and working well.

    I am afraid it may be milk taint but not quite too sure. If it helps diagnose, the smell was stronger out of the steam arm then the hot water tap. This is what makes me think it is milk taint.

    Having spoken to Attillio at Cosmorex I have been plugging away all day working on it to see if I can get it nice and fresh without a strip down. Im keen to get it going without the strip down if I can - but if not then Im in for some fun and learning along with some frustrating moments but all for the greater good. I actually bought this so I could start learning more about working on commercial machines but wasnt really thinking a full strip down straight away.

    A huge thanks to Attillio who actually convinced me to not buy anything from him but instead instructed me on how to go about getting rid of the smell/taste with what I had. If that doesnt work then I can buy the product I was originally thinking of...although it may just go straight to the garage for a strip down too. I guess it comes down to how adventurous Im feeling if the smell comes back again.

    After following Attillios advice the water is clear as crystal with no smell and the steam coming out of the arm is odour free at the moment too. I took some pictures which Ill try to post up another day (if only they were scratch and sniff, hey?). Heres hoping tomorrow brings the same fresh steam.

    Great espresso. Just dont order a flat white. ;D

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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Is there no boiler drain valve or anything like that??

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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Appreciate the kind words Pavoniboy* :)

    Anti Vacuum Valves ("vacuum breakers") dont always work for long depending on the water quality in the area of use and whether the owner keeps up with the water conditioning unit (anti scale filter / softener etc), which is why we always recommend equipment owners use "the other" tried and proven methods of ensuring the vacuum doesnt occur. In any case these valves commonly get the usual white powdery build up through them and eventually stick shut, so while they are there in place, they arent actually doing their job. If an owner doesnt engage in "the other" methods of management that ensure a vacuum doesnt occur in the boiler, milk "suck backs" can and do occur.

    Suck back of other stuff also occurs when machines are not managed properly.

    I dont know if the model has a drain plug, and explained to Pavoniboy how to drain the boiler by other methods for the purpose of giving the boiler a thorough flush.

    If the stink returns, it will be time for more severe actions* ;)

    A stuck antivacuum valve can be cleaned, freed up, (as long as you have the time),*refitted and as long as it isnt actually worn out will continue to do its job properly until it gets stuck again..... Valves in areas where the water is "good" may well continue to do their job ad infinitum until they wear out & actually stop sealing up in pressure and allow constant leakage (the opposite to when they get stuck shut with scale) and then they need to be replaced with a new valve.

    Hope that helps.

    Rgdz,
    Attilio
    very first Cs site sponsor


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    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Thank you again Attilio.

    So far, so good. Let water sit in boiler for over 24 hours and fired her up. Crystal water out of the hot water tap and no trace of the previous smell whatsoever for me. Steam was much fresher - I think if I concentrate on it really hard I can maybe just detect a faint smell but could also just be psychological as Im trying so hard to smell something and am left debating is that a faint trace, no cant smell anything, hang on is that a faint trace, no...and so forth. A lot more water got flushed through the boiler and hot water tap simply because it takes so much longer and is so much more difficult to run water through the steam arm. I flushed as much as I could bare. If there is a faint smell I think it will subside as more clean water (now that boiler water is clean) passes through it as steam - well wait and see anyway.

    I was confident enough to make myself a double flat white - and it tasted like a double flat white. Not a tainted horrible taste of previously. As hard as I tried I could not detect the flavour of previously in the cup at all. So its looking good so far.

    I managed to get a manual and exploded parts diagram from Carimali in Italy. It does appear to have a drain plug but I only had the top open. I was afraid if I got the toolbox out there would be no stopping and if I do strip her down - now is not a good time. I need to wait a couple of weeks to have any time to work on her. I also didnt know until today when I got the exploded parts diagram that there does appear to be a drain plug (going from looks as my Italian is not quite fluent - i.e. 4 or 5 useless words that sound cool, e.g. el gatto). The manual is in English but the parts diagram is in Italian, but I cant see that bolt at the bottom of the boiler being for anything else.

    The cleaned up anti-vac valve seems to be fine - it closed when the pressure began and there are no leaks and found it open again when I checked the machine once cold.

    Anyway, given how beautiful the water coming out of the hot water tap is, if any smell returns to the steam I am figuring I could simply pull all the steam path off and clean it all - it doesnt seem too difficult to get it off. Then again, a full strip down will give me a peek into that boiler to see what its like in there. As you can tell, Im really in two minds as to whether this should be a strip down now, or keep her operational and leave the strip down to another time.

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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Another part of your daily routine could be to pull a milk jug full of boiling water out of it everyday after it comes up to operating pressure. That way you keep "freshening" the otherwise stale de oxigenated water that lives long term in the boiler.

    If there wasnt a serious suck back, your machine may well be right to go without any further intervention.

    Also be aware, water from espresso machine boilers even when quite clean and uncontaminated, cant help but have a kind of "hot water system" character about it as it is after all, a copper hot water system!

    No problem for steaming milk, but if you want water as fresh as a daisy for your cups of tea....boil the jug instead, I do, especially as I drink black tea and can detect characters and flavours that didnt come care of the tea leaves...... ;)

    Good luck,
    A.

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    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Its still good today. And, yes I am pulling off a couple of milk jugs of water each time to optimise my chance of keeping it fresh in there.

    I also have never been one to make drinks from hot water tap. For me the tap is for warming up cups, portafilter if I forgot to leave it in the group and for rinsing baskets.

    Ill keep my fingers crossed for time being and decide on strip down in a couple of weeks when Ill have time to do it.

  13. #13
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Hey could one of you uno whizz kids point me in the right direction to get a replacement control button thingy for my uno e new or old? thanks.. [not so many of them here in New Zealand]

  14. #14
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    In Aus, Coffeeparts will sort you out. Link is over the left of page in the sponsor link.

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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Quote Originally Posted by 662B2B2B60050 link=1317699490/12#12 date=1318459645
    Hey could one of you uno whizz kids point me in the right direction to get a replacement control button thingy for my uno e* new or old? thanks.. [not so many of them here in New Zealand]
    If you dont wish to use Coffeeparts.com.au, contact Robert Timms (Fresh Food Services Ltd), Ive used them to get Carimali parts in the past.

    As per this thread, Pavoniboy I have stripped and rebuilt a Carimali Uno in the past. I highly recommend doing this for your machine. These are very simple machines and you cant really go wrong.

    Things to note when using the Uno:

    * The group temperature is a weakness, the group is heated via conduction (not thermosyphon like most high-end machines) so take this into account when heating the machine, the group takes a lot longer to get to temperature. Its usually worth running a bit of water through the group to heat it before pulling your shot.

    * Im not sure about the Uno-E, but with the Uno-P (Non-electronic dosage) the machine does not engage the pump to fill the boiler, ie. it requires mains pressure for normal auto-fill operation. However you can work around this by using the brew switch (as pumped water intended for the group is diverted to the boiler). But this is not ideal.

    Enjoy the machine, these make fantastic coffee when youre practiced with them, and very easy to maintain.

    Please flick me your email address if you want an english copy of the service/parts manual.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Quote Originally Posted by 7659534E796D370 link=1317699490/14#14 date=1318723893
    Pavoniboy I have stripped and rebuilt a Carimali Uno in the past. I highly recommend doing this for your machine. These are very simple machines and you cant really go wrong.
    Im in two minds here still. The water and steam has remained fresh with no problems since its day of cleaning. I tried leaving it 4-5 days without using and then fired her up and checked what the water and steam was like - still crystal clear water and both water and steam had a very faint smell of a hot water system - which as Atillio points out is normal. None of the old smell at all. But if I strip her down I will know her heartbeat and thus its still tempting. The drawback is the previous owner insulated the boiler and I keep looking in there and wondering can I really get that insulation back on neatly like that after it all or will I need to buy fresh insulation material and start over.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7659534E796D370 link=1317699490/14#14 date=1318723893
    The group temperature is a weakness, the group is heated via conduction (not thermosyphon like most high-end machines) so take this into account when heating the machine, the group takes a lot longer to get to temperature. Its usually worth running a bit of water through the group to heat it before pulling your shot.

    Yeah, I generally try to fire her up about an hour before use and the group is nice and hot by then. I need to run a cooling flush through it to bring it back to temp. I also have a BDB machine on the bench, so if I need a quick fire up time for a coffee I use it. Spoilt for choice at the moment. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by 7659534E796D370 link=1317699490/14#14 date=1318723893
    Im not sure about the Uno-E, but with the Uno-P (Non-electronic dosage) the machine does not engage the pump to fill the boiler, ie. it requires mains pressure for normal auto-fill operation. However you can work around this by using the brew switch (as pumped water intended for the group is diverted to the boiler). But this is not ideal.
    The e version does engage the pump to fill the boiler. Its all autofill and the pump will draw from a tank. That said, Im already lining up the parts to plumb it in and put a filter and softener in the line. Only problem is Ill need to run the hoses down in front of the edge of the benchtop and leave a cupboard open a few centimetres to fit the hoses in. Im renting and have a nice granite benchtop - I dont think its even worth asking the landlord if I can drill through that granite - Im sure I already know the answer. :(

    Quote Originally Posted by 7659534E796D370 link=1317699490/14#14 date=1318723893
    Please flick me your email address if you want an english copy of the service/parts manual.
    Thanks very much. Sending you a PM now.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno - proud new owner

    Okay, its on! Ive decided I will strip this one down, clean her up and rebuild. Have just ordered a new set of seals and gaskets for the rebuild.

    Might start a new thread for the rebuild with lots of pics along the way. Keep an eye out for the thread beginning in the next few days.



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