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Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800

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  • Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800

    Hi guys and girls,

    My wife and I had a Breville Cafe Roma for approximately 14 months until the pump died. So now we have a Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800 (the cheapest we could find) with extended warranty (5 years I believe).

    I went looking at Gaggia Classics and Baby Twins and The Sunbeam Paul Bassett series but after hearing about a Choice article that compared 19 sub-$1000 machines (all sunbeam and breville and the like - no italians as far as I know) where they gave the gong to the EM3800 I went for it. It helped that it is 1/5th the price too.

    Firstly, what do you guys think about this machine for its price?

    Secondly, in the last few weeks Ive been getting more and more into coffee and would like to know what I can do to improve the EM3800. I have no budget for a new machine at this stage so theres not much point suggesting new machines 

    So far I have the following ideas (thanks CS!),

    - un-pressurised basket. Could anyone tell me where from or how much?
    - increase tamp to restrict extra flow with non-pressurised basket

    At present I am getting fresh roasted coffee (5-7 days since roasting) from a local roaster ground for an espresso machine (Its finer than my dads Breville BCG450 is capable of) and at the moment Im getting a small amount of the grind into my cup (<10 grains).

    At the end of the day, with my present lack of funding, I am ok with sticking with this machine as is and buying a much better machine later (with grinder of course) as it makes better coffee than I get from most cafes (there are a few exceptions). However If I can get much better coffee for relatively little money (<$50) than Im happy to give it a go.

    And no im not going to drill out the basket (in case things dont work) or do anything that will void the warranty. Because there is every chance that the pump will die in another 12 months.

    Thanks guys!

  • #2
    Re: Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800

    Hi Wolski and welcome to Coffeesnobs

    Your suggested changes are great ones, and the best thing you can do after that is buy yourself a reasonable grinder and grind the beans just before you use them - thats where youll notice huge improvements in flavours in the cup.

    Remember - best to use roasted beans within 3 weeks of the roasting date.

    Best to use ground coffee within 3 minutes of it being ground for best flavour!

    Enjoy the coffee journey!



    • #3
      Re: Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800

      Hi Wolski,

      Ring the Breville customer service number provided on their website and ask for the BWF100 filter pack. If they ask which machine you have tell them you have the 800E. I ordered them a few weeks ago for my EM3800 and they fit perfectly. Takes some trial and error but you certainly will get better shots. Another major improvement will be using a correctly sized tamper. The plastic piece of junk provided is undersized and it is hard to get a good tamp with it as you need to tamp around the edges. Its also a pain when polishing the puck. This process should be done in one smooth motion.

      Hope this helps!


      • #4
        Re: Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800

        Thanks sniff and rusty!

        Rusty, how much was the pack? And what does it come with? You are more than correct about the stupid tamp that comes with the machine. Cant wait to find a good one. What tamp diameter do I need.

        Thanks for all the help!

        Edit: found the pack on the sunbeam website. $25 delivered


        • #5
          Re: Sunbeam Cafe Espresso EM3800

          Hi Wolski,

          The pack comes with a steel tamper, silicon rubber mat, a milk jug thermometer, a 30 ml coffee shot glass and a shaker for cocoa. It cost $49 online.

          I think the only way to get a proper sized tamper is to get it from somewhere like Pullman. If you send in your coffee basket they can measure it precisely and turn one to fit. The one that comes with the barista pack isnt *too* bad. Better than the plastic one which comes with the machine anyway!

          Hope this helps!