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Thread: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

  1. #1
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Well, having recently picked up this Carimali Uno e and getting some foul smells from the steam wand and hot water tap - I followed the advice of Atillio in freshening up that boiler without pulling the machine apart. I got good results and the water was looking and smelling much better. However, I was left wondering what is that boiler like, what was in it to make it smell that way (probably milk taint, especially since the anti-vac valve was stuck closed), how dirty is it still and how much better will it be if I strip it.

    All those questions floating around in my head led me to a full strip, clean and rebuild.

    A big thanks to those who replied on my pitfalls for beginners thread before I began this job who have definitely made it an easier job and may have saved me grief. So far I havent broken anything or stuffed anything up along the way. Heres hoping this smooth sailing continues.

    So here it is so far:

    The machine - crappy photos but it is a dark garage on a little point and click camera which couldnt handle all the bling with the flash, but couldnt get a crisp image with my handshake on a slow enough shutter to handle the dark light. Anyway, the blurred machine:





    Topless:



    Nude:





    HX piping removed. Does anyone know what that yellow crud on the thread is? Im assuming some form of thread sealant. It was a cross between rubbery and powdery and was on several threads. None of the threads had the crush washers or gaskets as per the exploded parts diagram - but I have a set of the washers and gaskets to put on during the rebuild. Im assuming with these, I dont need any thread sealant? Please correct me if Im wrong - Id rather not have to redo all the joints because of leaks - especially given Id then need to reco all the crush washers or buy more. Anyway, HX pipings removed:



    Boiler out: (and I managed to not break any piping!* :) ) Looks pretty dirty on the outside. Some of the Armaflex insulation has stuck to the outside of the boiler* :-?. Should this happen? Has me in two minds about reusing it when rebuilding.



    Water from said boiler - not too bad, but this is after a lot of onboard cleaning earlier:



    Not much left to come off now:



    The group and wastewater paths came off the next morning but I didnt take any photos. The motor, pump and electronics are staying onboard as theyre all working fine - this rebuild is about cleaning rather than fixing.

    Its all been soaking in a descaling solution for a couple of days, with group being switched to an espresso cleaner solution on the 2nd day - and wow a lot of coffee oils came out of it - YUCK! Water almost went black. Changed it all and it still went a light brown, changed again and stayed clear.

    Then Ive been rinsing, rinsing and rinsing again. Soak in water and rinse and rinse. Now its sitting in a bicarb soda solution in an attempt to make sure there is no residual stink in there. Then it will be time to keep on rinsing and maybe blow some compressed air through the pipes, before beginning the task of putting it all back together. More photos to come on the rebuilding part.

    Im after some advice on the insulation. Given that armaflex stuff stuck to the boiler - should I reuse it? Should I buy something else like insulbrite? Or should I not bother insulating at all? It will be on duty in my kitchen for me - the sole coffee drinker in the house, and guests which would be less than once a week. On days where I just want to wake up, have a quick coffee and leave I will be using my Breville DB, but on days where Im home it will be the Carimali. Eventually the BDB will go to my workplace (but that will be another year before that will work out) and then the Carimali will be the workhorse of the house (and the occasional Pavoni when I want to play levers). What are your thoughts?

    Thanks for any tips and enjoy the rebuild :)

  2. #2
    Site Sponsor coffee_machinist's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    I wouldnt use any thread tape or gasket sealant when you put the boiler back in, for the exact reason you found out. Little bits of it will drop into the boiler and end up heck knows where.

    As long as the threads and flanges of the pipes are in good condition (no pitting or scoring) everything should seal up no problem.

    Good work on the tear down, its a really nicely put together machine. Im kinda wishing I snapped it up now :)

  3. #3
    Senior Member artman's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Good work! Nice seeing a machine being rejuvenated.

    That connection looks like it seals with a washer, hard to tell from the pics.

    I have seen recently a post where the CSer insulated the boiler with a rubber/silicone (orange coloured) material secured around the boiler.

    Cheers

  4. #4
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Well, after getting paranoid that all the work could be in vain, I went for round two on the cleaning. Put the whole lot back into a descaling solution for another 48 hours and then into a bicarb soda solution for 24 hours with lots of rinsing in between and again at the end. I am sure it is all clean now. Everything came up nicely.

    I then blew some compressed air through the pipes and am in the process of rebuilding right now.

    Will post some pics and hopefully the finished product tomorrow. I cant wait to have her operational knowing she is gleaming inside.


  5. #5
    Site Sponsor coffee_machinist's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Had a Uno E on the bench at work today. Now seriously wishing I had bought that one :)

  6. #6
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Well, after only a couple of trying moments, shes done. Up and running, fully functional and a satisfaction guarantee that shes squeeky clean. Running like a dream too. I decided to go with not insulating her for now. She is off for about 2 min 10 sec and on for 7 sec. When she was insulated she was off for about 3 mins and on for 7 sec so I may still look into another insulation in future.

    Anyway, heres the rest of the story.

    Boiler in the bath:


    I also had several other buckets full of descaling baths with all the various pieces in.

    Element:


    The elements still underwent some gentle cleaning before going back in.

    The clean boiler waiting to go back on:


    Various bits and pieces laid out for the rebuild onto the chassis:


    I actually then changed out that jet for a Carimali spec .8mm jet before putting it together (a last minute decision).

    Coming together:


    All together now:


    It turns out I put those steam and hot water levers upside down - doh! :-[ Anway, that became obvious as I put the case on and was a 2 minute fix.

    From the side:


    The machine in place:




    Action shots:




    The result is amazing satisfaction in having done the job myself, getting to know my machine inside and out, being 100% satisfied as to its cleanliness and now pulling great shots of espresso from her.

    Now I just have to order my water filter and softener and plumb her in and Ill be done. Im stoked with the outcome and will only be more pleased once shes plumbed.

    Oh, and I think shes called Carol. ;)

  7. #7
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    nice one! your element efficiency is probably improved after descaling it too :)

  8. #8
    Senior Member artman's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Great work, looks great!

    Cheers

  9. #9
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Great work that looks brilliant! Some of the high density orange foam would be great insulator if you decide to go ahead with it. These machines really are so simple, with some TLC they can last such a long time.

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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    I admire your thouroghness! Although if I had little pieces out like that they would be swallowed, made into leggo, and fed to the pets...

    How did you go with sealing / washers / thread tape? Do you need anything but a clean thread to seal it properly?

  11. #11
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    I only needed to use some teflon tape on one thread. Everything else sealed up nicely. The one thread I did have to use tape on was strange - it is an elbow joint that screws into the boiler and has a pipe then screw into the other end. However when I did it up properly, it went about 30 degrees past where it needed to be for the pipe to meet up with it. When I backed it off that 30 degrees and did up the pipe, it would leak under pressure. So the only simple solution I could think of was some teflon tape for that joint. It worked a treat.

    All connections which come with washers or teflon gaskets got new ones during the rebuild. Everything is now sealed up nicely and working well. I have ordered my water filter and softener and parts to plumb it in today. So the project should be completed soon.

  12. #12
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    neat, thanks... you inspire me to do the same to my Giotto!

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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Great job mate.
    I was watching that machine for sale, didnt realise it would have needed that much work - but good job on it, it looks great!
    How do you know how long you can leave the boiler and other brass fittings descaling for? Chris from Talk Coffees stick on descaling said leave it in for 15 minutes, but you (and lots of others when doing a full disassemble) seemed to leave it in there for days!
    Also - really keen to know - I remember you said originally that your BES900 made better tasting shots, but Carol made thicker shots... how is the comparison now post re-build?

  14. #14
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7C777B736566747377657A736F160 link=1319078128/12#12 date=1320669388
    Great job mate.
    I was watching that machine for sale, didnt realise it would have needed that much work - but good job on it, it looks great!
    Thanks. It came in fully working order, I didnt have to fix anything. However I believe it had milk taint in the boiler and thus the extent of my efforts. I think the onboard descale I originally did got rid of the tainted flavour in the cup but I was left with the thought of what it could be like in there and this pushed me into the strip down and clean. Im glad I did - its really cleaned up nice and left me with that absolute assurance that its all good inside.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7C777B736566747377657A736F160 link=1319078128/12#12 date=1320669388
    How do you know how long you can leave the boiler and other brass fittings descaling for? Chris from Talk Coffees stick on descaling said leave it in for 15 minutes, but you (and lots of others when doing a full disassemble) seemed to leave it in there for days!
    Mate, almost everything I know about coffee is from coffeesnobs. When doing an onboard descale, I leave it sitting in there for 15 mins - actually I follow Chris instructions to the T. But when stripping down and soaking individual parts I went for 48 hours at a time, as I saw people generally do 1-3 days in the descale bath on other rebuild threads on this site. I assume you can leave it much longer on the strip down as only the parts you want soaked in descaler are being soaked - none of the seals, gaskets etc went into the descale bath, whereas an onboard descale everything along the path is being subject to the solution(?). Also, the ability to completely rinse out each part after descaling is much better when disassembled(?). I dont really know, this is just my assumptions, but I figure there is a good reason for the two very different times as I trust the word of the people Im following when it comes to these things and it hasnt let me down so far.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7C777B736566747377657A736F160 link=1319078128/12#12 date=1320669388
    Also - really keen to know - I remember you said originally that your BES900 made better tasting shots, but Carol made thicker shots... how is the comparison now post re-build?
    It took a week for the taste to come good on Carol - you could tell the coffee was made with water coming straight off fresh metal cleaned with acid. But now she has come around and is producing a beautiful flavour in the cup. Producing wonderfully thick nectar with a great taste. I still think the BES900 can produce more subtle nuances in the flavour profile, but Carol produces a thicker, richer nectar shot that I really appreciate especially when drinking espresso/ristretto. I am really torn between these two machines. I will keep both (well all three ;D, because of course theres my Pavoni that I will keep forever) but I am being pressured for bench space so one has to leave its home on the bench. The Carimali is staying as I am plumbing her in (see my next post), she weighs a tonne and thus not easy to move in and out of storage to use, I do love the thick nectar shots she produces, and I feel proud looking at her and knowing I did a thorough job cleaning her up. Also the BES900 is quite light and can be easily moved in and out of a cupboard to use when I feel like it. Ill probably pull her out when I have a particularly good roast that I want to taste on the BES or if I have a roast that I think would taste better at a hotter/colder brew temp, and of course just when I want to play with a different toy! :D

  15. #15
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Well, the final part of the journey is done - Ive plumbed her in. Although waste water is only plumbed down to a bucket under the bench - it was just too difficult to run a gravity fed waste water hose half way around my kitchen to where my sink is.

    Ive plumbed her through a Brita C150 filter and softener from Bombora. Thanks to Bernard who advised on the setup and sourced a couple of extra parts I needed for my setup. The C150 is brilliant. I mainly got it for the health of my machine but I immediately noticed the improvement in flavour from the filtered, softer water.

    So, the journey of the rebuild is complete and the journey of Carol serving me wonderful coffee is at the beginning of what will hopefully be a long journey. A small footprint, plumbed rotary HX is a joy to have on the bench. Very happy with the outcome. :)

  16. #16
    Senior Member SniffCoffee's Avatar
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    Re: Carimali Uno e Rebuild.

    Congratulations!* What a fantastic result for your blood sweat and tears!

    Sniff

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    Carimali Uno E

    Hi

    I picked one up on the weekend . Former owner told me how well maintained it was.

    The group head was a mess along with the portafilters etc.
    Cleaned up those parts and decided to do some testing to see if this was right off.

    There's a ring off Calcium around the heating element gasket , and some signs of dripage , I thoroughly expected the fuse to blow.
    (An outfit in BC quoted me $295 for a 1800W element ouch)

    I hooked it up the dishwasher adapter kit after blowing the inerds with compressed air. $12

    I was ready to run when I plugged it in and lo and behold the pump kicked in and fill the boiler.
    Then feeling brave I turned on the heater. That worked it heated up to about 1.5 bar. Got great steam out of the wand.
    There was constant hissing from the group head and I didn't have those parts put back in.
    I'm thinking it might be a stuck solenoid and some cleaning to get it workable.

    This thread is a couple years old now . These machines are real rare in this side of Italy . If anyone has some advice or a user manual , any help would be appreciated.
    I'll try find the post at the top of this thread on cleaning the boiler without removal first. I'll also need most of the group head gaskets.

    Thx

    Fergus
    fm9@shaw.ca











    Quote Originally Posted by SniffCoffee View Post
    Congratulations!* What a fantastic result for your blood sweat and tears!

    Sniff

  18. #18
    uno
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    new uno owner

    Hi fellow Uno experts after much coveting and many a conversation I have taken the plunge and bought a Carimali Uno from a second hand store. Now I have two options here really either suck it up and take it to a specialist espresso tech outfit and be prepared to pay big $$ OR have a quiet tinker with it myself having drawn on the expertize from the likes of you good folk.
    So to put it quite simply what are some easy steps that I can take to do some basic cleaning/preventative maintenance of the machine myself a which tasks should b left to the experts?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mutti0 View Post
    Hi

    I picked one up on the weekend . Former owner told me how well maintained it was.

    The group head was a mess along with the portafilters etc.
    Cleaned up those parts and decided to do some testing to see if this was right off.

    There's a ring off Calcium around the heating element gasket , and some signs of dripage , I thoroughly expected the fuse to blow.
    (An outfit in BC quoted me $295 for a 1800W element ouch)

    I hooked it up the dishwasher adapter kit after blowing the inerds with compressed air. $12

    I was ready to run when I plugged it in and lo and behold the pump kicked in and fill the boiler.
    Then feeling brave I turned on the heater. That worked it heated up to about 1.5 bar. Got great steam out of the wand.
    There was constant hissing from the group head and I didn't have those parts put back in.
    I'm thinking it might be a stuck solenoid and some cleaning to get it workable.

    This thread is a couple years old now . These machines are real rare in this side of Italy . If anyone has some advice or a user manual , any help would be appreciated.
    I'll try find the post at the top of this thread on cleaning the boiler without removal first. I'll also need most of the group head gaskets.

    Thx

    Fergus
    fm9@shaw.ca



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