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Thread: Lelit Mara (PL62) Review

  1. #251
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunda View Post
    I would unhesitatingly recommend the P500. As you will read from the earlier parts of this thread, I started my espresso machine journey nearly four years ago with the Mara. What is not documented here is that 14 months later I upgraded to the P500. This was not simply a case of upgrade-itis, I had quite specific reasons. The P500 hasn't missed a beat and is an impressive piece of gear. It is well worth the price differential and extra bench space.
    Whatís weíre the differences that made you make the switch Gunda?

  2. #252
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    I usually only make 2-3 coffees a day and have limited bench space. The Mara plus grinder plus knock box are perfect for me.

  3. #253
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    I did "upgrade" my Mara with one of these.

    It now turns on automatically in the mornings and is warm when I get out of bed plus when I'm out and want a coffee I can turn it on remotely and the Mara is warm and ready when I get home.
    Last edited by tony644; 7th June 2018 at 11:33 AM. Reason: Spelling
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  4. #254
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunda View Post
    I would unhesitatingly recommend the P500. As you will read from the earlier parts of this thread, I started my espresso machine journey nearly four years ago with the Mara. What is not documented here is that 14 months later I upgraded to the P500. This was not simply a case of upgrade-itis, I had quite specific reasons. The P500 hasn't missed a beat and is an impressive piece of gear. It is well worth the price differential and extra bench space.
    Hey Gunda, I too am curious what prompted you to switch. (I recall exchanging some conversation with you a few years back on an old coffeesnobs thread soon after both of us bought our Maras.)

    My PL62 is apparently failing after 4 years. Lots of parts wearing out or corroding. Itís all fixable, but the estimate I got from the local tech is close to the cost of a new machine. The tech blames the vibration pump, which he says is poor quality. He says that as flow has become restricted, everything ends up working harder and wearing faster.

    But the machine has given me about 6000 delicious shots over the years, and for that I canít complain.

  5. #255
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder240 View Post
    My PL62 is apparently failing after 4 years. Lots of parts wearing out or corroding.
    What a shocker. I saw your pic on the other thread and the amount of corrosion on your machine is just crazy.
    The water is supposed to be INSIDE the boiler and the pipes not on the outside. My guess is that you had a serious steam leak you didnít know about for the whole 4 years as it looks to me like thereís 4 years worth of corrosion from the outside in.
    Thereís no way a machine can corrode like that without a lot of water (or condensed steam) on the outside
    Maybe thereís a lesson her for everyone to take a look inside their machines from time to time to make sure thereís no hidden problems to find out before serious damage it done .
    Anyway, best of luck with your repair mate. If you can find out where your internal water/steam leak came from I would love to know.
    Best
    Grillsy
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  6. #256
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    One way to catch an internal steam leak leak is to have cups upside down on the warming tray, because you should find condensation on the inside of the cups.

    @Thunder240 - I sent you a PM.
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  7. #257
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grillsy View Post
    What a shocker. I saw your pic on the other thread and the amount of corrosion on your machine is just crazy.
    The water is supposed to be INSIDE the boiler and the pipes not on the outside. My guess is that you had a serious steam leak you didn’t know about for the whole 4 years as it looks to me like there’s 4 years worth of corrosion from the outside in.
    This is a case where the internals of the machine have seen plenty of water over a prolonged period. It's hard to believe that there was no audible hissing whatsoever. Espresso gear should be serviced regularly and I'd think any competent tech would have nipped it in the bud promptly. Don't blame the manufacturer.

  8. #258
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    Though Iím sure I could have (and should have) serviced it more often), I did indeed service it in 2015 and 2017 while living in Virginia. It was inspected and descaled both times. The tech also replaced the pressurestat and group head gasket in 2017. So, I feel confident whatever leak resulted in this happened since the 2nd service. And no, there hasnít been any audible hiss.

    One think that irks me is that I just looked up all of the parts this tech says should be replaced, and I can order them from the US Lelit importer for half the price he wants to charge me (and he wonít allow me to supply the parts myself). Now, I expect a small markup, but not double. But the kicker is that his markup is the difference between my agreeing to the repairs and my buying a new machine because the repairs are uneconomical.

    But enough complaining. If it comes down to it, I have a garage, a workbench, and tools. Iíll teach myself.

  9. #259
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caffeinator View Post
    Don't blame the manufacturer.
    That depends on how common this is. This is the first such report I've read, but I know for a fact of another such instance that has not been reported publicly, so this is not a completely isolated case.
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  10. #260
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grillsy View Post
    Anyway, best of luck with your repair mate. If you can find out where your internal water/steam leak came from I would love to know.
    Best
    Grillsy
    Grillsy, thanks, will do. When I asked the tech what he thought was the culprit, he mentioned that heís seen a lot of these 1/8 pressurestats corrode through. Also, heís seen the these pumps become flow restricted as a result of either corrosion or scale, which in turn causes other parts to wear out faster than they would because the pump works harder.

    Anyhow, Iíll report back what I find on my other thread.

  11. #261
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    This one is interesting thatís for sure. Whatís you water quality like over there? I have been told that in the UK a machine can be pretty messed up within months without good filtration as the water there is packed with calcium (I think) so water could be the nasty in this story. After your repair your next purchase might have to be a filter.
    All the best from OZ matey
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  12. #262
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    Lelit Mara (PL62) Review

    Quote Originally Posted by Grillsy View Post
    This one is interesting thatís for sure. Whatís you water quality like over there? I have been told that in the UK a machine can be pretty messed up within months without good filtration as the water there is packed with calcium (I think) so water could be the nasty in this story. After your repair your next purchase might have to be a filter.
    All the best from OZ matey
    You probably saw it on my thread, but the problem was the safety valve. Fixed at last (soft parts replaced) by a competent tech, along with whatever else goes into a full service. He also found a corroded wire, but says the pump, Pstat, and boiler are all fine.

    Regarding the water quality, here is San Francisco we have great water thanks to the Hetch Hetchy (a river that was dammed up in Yosemite, broke John Muirís heart). But I only moved here last November. Prior to that I lived in Virginia where the water is quite hard. I used a Brita filter, but I think it only pulls out the heavy metals, not the calcium.

    Incidentally, this last week while the machine was at the shop Iíve been learning to use my dadís old La Pavoni Professionale. Itís been fun but a little frustrating. I canít get consistent crema (yet).
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  13. #263
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder240 View Post
    You probably saw it on my thread, but the problem was the safety valve.
    Not the first Mara to experience a problem with this part. Glad to hear that you found a competent tech that you could trust.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder240 View Post
    Prior to that I lived in Virginia where the water is quite hard. I used a Brita filter, but I think it only pulls out the heavy metals, not the calcium.
    The Brita jug filters don't soften the water for long in hard water. Plus you may well find that a fair bit of the carbon from the filter gets into the machine. I initially used one but gave up after not too long. Did the tech offer an opinion about whether the Mara was close to needing a descale? You'd expect so if it ran for several years on hard water.

  14. #264
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder240 View Post
    Prior to that I lived in Virginia where the water is quite hard. I used a Brita filter, but I think it only pulls out the heavy metals, not the calcium.
    These "filters" are based on ion exchange resins, Brita won't tell you exactly which resin but it appears to be a sodium loaded SAC* resin, so calcium is one of the first ions that will be exchanged. Only magnesium and beryllium are preferential over calcium in this type of resin and there's not likely to be much beryllium in your water.

    BTW this also means the resin will put out two sodium ions for each calcium ion it absorbs which is why measuring the conductivity before and after the filter doesn't tell you much.

    *SAC = Strong Acid Cation exchange resin, this is based on info found here
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  15. #265
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    Always appreciate the additional info you provide Lyrebird...

    Mal.

  16. #266
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    Hi all,

    I'm seriously considering this nice and small machine, and still with doubts between it and the rocket appartamento.
    The footprints are somewhat similar. Altho the rocket is a bit bulkier, but with a somewhat apparent more solid construction (from online pics), and slightly larger cup tray). Unfortunately doesn't have brewing pressure gauge (plus points on the lellit).

    Trying to figure out the smallest differences, can anyone please tell me these 2 measurements in the Mara (or in the Appartamento):
    1) distance between the top of the drip tray and the double spout portafilter (when mounted in the group)
    1) distance between the top of the drip tray and the bottom of the E61 group (when no portafilter is in)

    Also happy to hear about your takes on this lelit/rocket dilema
    Thanks!

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