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Thread: Lever machines

  1. #1
    guv
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    Lever machines

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

    Im contemplating a La Pavoni Professional Lusso machine.

    Been reading lots about them and very keen - happy with the manual process and they look pretty cool and are quick to start up with a 5 min warm-up.

    Couple of concerns I have which I would appreciate opinions on.

    Firstly - steaming milk - have read varying views on how effective they are - any users out there able to comment?

    Secondly - have heard that they are good for the first shot but the quality does detriment the longer they are on. This true?

    I guess im looking for reasons not to go with one of these machines as im reasonably interested.

    In terms of usage - 6-7 milk based coffees per day made two at a time. Occasionally i get a bunch of people around and make 7-8 coffees in a row.

    Any feedback would be fantastic.

    Cheers
    Guv

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    Re: Lever machines

    Roughly in order and trying to be a little impartial.

    13-14 minutes before everything is ready to make shots, 5 minutes is first switch off and time to bleed off the false pressure.

    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1276410064 this recent thread on milk steaming with a Pav.

    2 milk based doubles are fine but after that most of the machine is to hot for getting the best from the shots. Cooling the PF under a tap does help a little. After 20 minutes forget about it unless you like burnt coffee.

    As to entertaining then this is the WRONG machine for the job.

    There are lots of positives too such as going straight from shot to steam and back unlike other non HX or dual boiler machines. Silence :) Reliability and low maintenance.

    If you like the idea of the lever and are looking at a machine you can leave running or turn out more coffees in a row then a larger lever even up to a commercial 1 group might be a better option.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Pavoniboy's Avatar
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    Re: Lever machines

    Totally agree with Beanflying.

    Quote Originally Posted by 3F2D2E580 link=1277094113/0#0 date=1277094113
    quick to start up with a 5 min warm-up
    Beanflying is spot on - more like 13-14 minute range. I can manage 10 if in a rush, but to do it properly 13-14 is spot on.

    Quote Originally Posted by 3F2D2E580 link=1277094113/0#0 date=1277094113
    steaming milk -have read varying views on how effective they are - any users out there able to comment?
    Can do good microfoam but will take some practice to learn its idiosyncracies.

    Quote Originally Posted by 3F2D2E580 link=1277094113/0#0 date=1277094113
    have heard that they are good for the first shot but the quality does detriment the longer they are on. This true?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by 3F2D2E580 link=1277094113/0#0 date=1277094113
    In terms of usage - 6-7 milk based coffees per day made two at a time
    No problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by 3F2D2E580 link=1277094113/0#0 date=1277094113
    Occasionally i get a bunch of people around andmake 7-8 coffees in a row.
    Big problem. Wont do this many in a row without making terrible burnt coffee after the first few.

    Summary: I love my Pavoni lever - beautiful, simple, easy to maintain, lots of hands on with control over everything and makes me a beautiful shot. It certainly is no good for entertaining though - if you need lots of coffee at once, it simply wont do.

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    Re: Lever machines

    what about one of these?

    http://sorrentinacoffee.myshopify.com/products/ponte-vecchio-lusso-2-dual-group-lever-espresso-machine-classic-design

    i think i am going to ask Santa for one

  5. #5
    guv
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    Re: Lever machines

    hmm - now that does look like a better suited unit.

    have to check the bench space

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    Re: Lever machines

    The Lusso is actually very small on footprint compared even to some prosumer HXs. Best you look at the details on the Basket and shot size too, both a smaller than the considered norm, not really a problem just somthing to be aware of.

    http://www.home-barista.com/ponte-ve...so-review.html review here

    H - 28cm x W - 36cm x D - 28cm Dimensions

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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 2621252A22283D2D2A23440 link=1277094113/5#5 date=1277097301
    The Lusso is actually very small on footprint compared even to some prosumer HXs. Best you look at the details on the Basket and shot size too, both a smaller than the considered norm, not really a problem just somthing to be aware of.

    i thought thats why they made the twin group

    two shots for me, two shots for you.... :)




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    Re: Lever machines

    Ive had my La Pavoni (Europiccola - Millenium) for about a month now & Im still learning. *Its a very challenging but rewarding way to make coffee.

    Challenging, because you need to get all of your ducks in a row. *Fresh coffee is critical. *The beans that I use at work simply werent fresh enough - although theyre fine through the Wega Nova. *CS WOW & Seven Seeds Espresso blend are brilliant. *Flushing, grinding, tamping all need to be done carefully (as they should).

    Rewarding, because when you get it right you get much softer more subtle flavours than from a pump machine. *I was in Melb. last week & had a lot of coffees from Synesso machines. *Some were brilliant & some were in Pav territory. *Great results for not much money.

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    Senior Member speleomike's Avatar
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    Re: Lever machines

    Hi all

    The above posts talk about two different machines. Andrew was asking about a "La Pavoni Professional Lusso". The review on Home Barista is for a "Ponte Vecchio Lusso". Two different machines and different manufacturers. (La Pavoni also make a "Lusso" that is not a lever machine.) So one has to be careful here to refer to the right machine.

    Mike

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    Re: Lever machines

    Hi Mike,

    very aware of the two different machines but based on expected usage the Pav may not suit the OP as well as the PV Lusso so there is a reason it was given as a suggestion.

  11. #11
    guv
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    Re: Lever machines

    Thanks for all the replies so far.

    Mike, I was asking the La Papavoni levers but happy to see info about alternates as it would seem my requirements dont exactly fit.

    Andrew

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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 5D4F4C3A0 link=1277094113/10#10 date=1277107744
    I was asking the La Papavoni levers
    I am gonna try find me a La Mamavoni ;D

    Good luck in your search Andrew

  13. #13
    Senior Member speleomike's Avatar
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    Re: Lever machines

    Hi all

    First a start whats a La Mamavoni ?

    Second it looks like "Lusso" in Italian translates to Luxury. I can see the "La Pav Stradivari Lusso" as possibly being "Lusso" but the Ponte Veccio does not really equate with Luxury. (Home Brarista has quite a few reviews of it.)

    Anyhow like Andrew I too am looking for a lever machine. I already have a Europiccola but wanted something that would do two shots and then another two more again and again.

    Have a search Andrew on Home Barista and also search Coffee Geek for Lever Machine Roundup to find good reviews. Let us know Andrew what you end up getting.

    Mike

  14. #14
    guv
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    Re: Lever machines

    will do Mike

    Been looking around for ages and chances are I will still be looking for a few months yet - takes time to make my mind up with new toys - esp with all of the options out there.

    Cheers for the info

  15. #15
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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 79263E282328242D2D2E2E262A254B0 link=1277094113/11#11 date=1277107926
    Quote Originally Posted by 5D4F4C3A0 link=1277094113/10#10 date=1277107744
    I was asking the La Papavoni levers
    I am gonna try find me a La Mamavoni *;D

    Good luck in your search Andrew
    I thought you already had one.

  16. #16
    Senior Member speleomike's Avatar
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    Re: Lever machines

    Oh I just noticed ....
    Dr Dregs has a Brugnetti Aurora single lever.
    Thats on my list of wants :-)

  17. #17
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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 67647178717B797D7F71140 link=1277094113/12#12 date=1277113890
    Hi all

    First a start whats a La Mamavoni ?

    Second it looks like "Lusso" in Italian translates to Luxury. I can see the "La Pav Stradivari Lusso" as possibly being "Lusso" but the *Ponte Veccio does not really equate with Luxury. (Home Brarista has quite a few reviews of it.) *
    *
    Lusso wise I think a relatively temperature stable, spring lever machine with features like the Veccio leaves any of the Pav levers for dead. I loved my little Pavonis but if I travelled this road again it would be with a lussious Veccio for sure...and it would be the 2 group to boot. Try and do that with a Pavoni lusso.

  18. #18
    levercrema
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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 393A2F262F252723212F4A0 link=1277094113/15#15 date=1277127515
    Oh I just noticed ....
    Dr Dregs has a Brugnetti Aurora single lever.
    Thats on my list of wants :-)
    Its on my list of wants too. Its my wifes machine but she lets me make her coffee with it. Damn it I hate being a kept man.

  19. #19
    A_M
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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 5E574457405140575F53320 link=1277094113/17#17 date=1277128096
    Damn it I hate being a kept man.
    Tell the truth... YA love it :D

  20. #20
    guv
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    Re: Lever machines

    Hi folks - thought id follow up my original post.

    I have managed to track down a 2nd hand La Pav Euro Pro machine in mint condition for less than 500 nz. Pre Millenium edition but Im ok with that.

    Figured it will give me a good enough exposure to lever machines without purchasing brand new. It arrives friday so Ill upload pix etc..

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    Re: Lever machines

    Have fun playing :)

    You will need a finer grind generally than a Pumped machine for a start. Also watch the heat of the Portafilter, my Millennium I normally load and pull as the base of the PF is getting really hot all over at about 13-14 minutes from turn on, pre millennium may be a little quicker due to the internal build. After 20 minutes forget it unless you let it cool for a while.

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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 5E595D525A504555525B3C0 link=1277094113/20#20 date=1279770492
    You will need a finer grind generally than a Pumped machine for a start. Also watch the heat of the Portafilter, my Millennium I normally load and pull as the base of the PF is getting really hot all over at about 13-14 minutes from turn on, pre millennium may be a little quicker due to the internal build. After 20 minutes forget it unless you let it cool for a while.
    I havent used my Pavoni Pro for about 18 months now but would agree with all of this. *

    The grind thing can be a very fine (no pun) line and I often found it was easy to choke the machine.

    Because of the heat I also found that a darker roast tended to work better.

  23. #23
    guv
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    Re: Lever machines

    Thanks for the hints folks - machine arrives tomorrow now as long as the couriers do their job properly.

    Will no doubt be in a caffeine induced non-sleep haze for most of the weekend. .. bliss

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    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 243635430 link=1277094113/22#22 date=1279848301
    machine arrives tomorrow now as long as the couriers do their job properly.
    If you could get a courier to work here on a Saturday it would be a first!


  25. #25
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    Re: Lever machines

    looks like we have aussie couriers here.. it finally arrived at lunchtime today ;0)

    Is in pretty good condition as well.

    Didnt have time to pull any shots but thats my plan for the evening

  26. #26
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    Re: Lever machines

    1st night with the new lever - went ok - pulled a few shots and the results ranged from gushers to chokers and everything in-between.

    Not concerned as I know ill get there over time.

    couple of images for those who are interested.


    mod edit- images hosted and uploaded for you. Have a read over http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1187136315 2mcm

  27. #27
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    Re: Lever machines

    Thanks 2mcm

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    Re: Lever machines

    Loving the woodwork. *I find, especially when I change coffees, that the trick is to nearly choke the shot then gradually go coarser on the grind. You have to be really consistent on the dose, a tamper with rings helps. Have fun.

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    Re: Lever machines

    Looks in fairly good order :) If you have been trying the single basket then STOP, it is a major pain to get it to pour well.

    With the double on a traditional grind size and a heavy tamp have the basket just under full by 1-2mm works fairly well as a dose level after a light tap to settle the grinds. The other option is a really fine grind and light tamp but it takes a while to get it right initially, the dose is high some good wacks on the bench and top up it needed followed by a 1-2kg tamp.

    After using the second option for a fair while now I am planning to stick to it for the PaV as it gets a better result.

    Enjoy your playing.

  30. #30
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    Re: Lever machines


    I never used the single basket - didnt know what it was for ;)

    1st major step is to get a real tamper as I only have the plastic unit supplied with the machine. I expect this to help a lot.

    2nd is to give the unit a descale and clean. Planning on checking a few of the o-rings etc tonite. Then ill play around with the grind /\/ tamp methods you mentioned.

    Thanks for the advice.
    A

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    Re: Lever machines

    I feel your pain I put up with the plastic bit of crud for a week while I waited for my Tamper to be made, a proper one makes life so much easier.

    Good to hear about the single mine is sitting beside the pod holding one in the bottom drawer, secretly I hope they will breed and evolve into double baskets but I doubt it ;)

  32. #32
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    Re: Lever machines

    Had my 1st drinkable shot tonite.. was passable.

    Been packing too much into the basket - dosed down a little and tamped less and it flowed ok.

    Now to get that steam wand under control..

    good times

  33. #33
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    Re: Lever machines

    Progress update - got a new 49mm groundhog tamper and a couple of red ACF cups today...

    The right sized tamper seemed to make all the difference - managed to pull a couple of shots that were nice and drinkable - steamed some milk (well bubbled it lots to be honest) and my wife and I agreed that it actually tasted pretty good ;) * *

    A big step from last night - cant wait for tomorrows attempts.


  34. #34
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    Re: Lever machines

    Time for the next step - anyone know where i can get hold of a naked portafilter for a pre millenium la pavoni? 49 Ml right-to-left turn to lock in.

    Apparently the 16gm basket from the Electra MCL will work with my machine with one.

    Got the steam sorted on the machine - producing very nice microfoam now and the shots are amazing.

    Cheers
    Andrew

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    Re: Lever machines

    Quote Originally Posted by 465457210 link=1277094113/33#33 date=1281175986
    Time for the next step - anyone know where i can get hold of a naked portafilter for a pre millenium la pavoni?49 Ml right-to-left turn to lock in.
    You wont find much available here in NZ, over in the states at OE there are some available, but theyre not cheap!

    mod edit- link removed

    Your best bet may be to buy another standard portafilter body and modify it yourself with a hole saw if youre handy with tools.Plenty of web advice available on making your own bottomless.
    Re: Steaming , i had best luck blocking the backwards facing hole on the 3 hole tip.

  36. #36
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    Re: Lever machines

    Cheers Kofekitt

    I found that orphan espresso link b4 posting here - US$170 odd is a lil out of the price range.

    Think you are right - ill chase up a standard portafilter and mod it.

    I was planning on plugging up one of holes in the steam wand but persevered and dont need to know - got it tamed at least, not mastered though.

    Cheers
    Andrew

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    Re: Lever machines

    No problems, ive ordered from espressoservices in the UK, quick service and postage, and cheaper than anything i could find in NZ

    mod edit- link removed

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    Re: Lever machines

    Just be careful if you do get a naked one that you dont use to much pressure on the PF handle while pulling the shot as there is not a lot of metal left when nakedised.



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