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What have I done? (Cimbali Jr thread)

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  • What have I done? (Cimbali Jr thread)

    I lucked(?) into a very reasonably priced La Cimbali yesterday, problem was, the guys son was selling it for him and all he knew was that when they pulled it out of their pizza shop, it was running.Tthe outside looked ok, group was gunked up beyond belief but I had driven all the way their, so I took a gamble. Now it is up to the community to tell me if that gamble will pay off! I got the covers off the old girl this evening and although there is no rust, the mould is incredible! I would hate to imagine what was happening in the pizza shop, I assume the fungi pizza was their specialty. I have not plugged it in at all yet as I don't have the correct connections to get water into it and also, I am not sure what the procedure is. If anyone can let me know what the first steps towards a rebuild should be I would be most appreciative! It obviously needs a good clean but is there anything I should do to check the state of it. It really does look ok besides the mould, I'm just not sure how to assess the componentry. Also, I can't find any sort of model identification code or serial numbers, the only stickers on it have worn off so can anyone help me with dating it?
    Thanks and enjoy the pics!











  • #2
    Doesn't look that bad from the pics. If it's just dirty outside the components then it's ok. Clean it up. Pull the collar off , clean the group. You could take out the element to assess scale.

    I would give it a good clean and fire it up. Pretty sure the model you have, the water feeds the small tank that the pump then pumps out from. So you could just keep ripping that up so you can test it.

    Cheers

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    • #3
      Hi artman, thanks for your reply.
      The mould seems to have permeated everything. The entire floorpan is covered along with most of the wiring.

      It really does look like it is ok besides that, the electronics box is completely clean and dry and there is no scale inside the steam wand or hot water tap. It is just everything else that is covered in mould, and now that a bit of water has dripped on the mould, it STINKS.

      So, I am going to take it all the way down as that is the only way I am going to get rid of this mould, there was no way I was getting it clean otherwise. The boiler is stamped 1997 so there's that question answered. If any of my photos look interesting I will upload them after the stripdown.
      Now, once more unto the breach

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      • #4
        Soaking everything in descale solution should clean it all up. I guess your disappointment level or elation level really depends on how much you paid for it. These are solid machines built with quality material and with better care (mechanically) will outlast you.

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        • #5
          Oh, you mean like this

          It was actually in really good nick besides the mould and some black scale inside the boiler which I can't seem to get rid of. Any tips?
          For now it is in a million pieces on my shed floor and bench while I await a parts delivery. My children may actually get to see me today!

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          • #6
            Hi I wish you all the luck in the world with this machine as I "bought it first". The guy selling was a really nice guy and let me have it for a a night to see if I could get it to run from a reservoir instead of plumbing. Needless to say that the machine worked from mains and not( At least I couldn't) from a hacked bottle. In an old post here Java said that he had got his and seen others running off tanks. Oh well!!
            The mould was incredible but when I did extensive research on the net( and calls to the importer to see if it would run on a "tankl")the machine internals looked very reasonable.

            I was quite surprised at how upset I was having to return it and not getting to buy it and clean it up.

            Again best of luck. Looks like a great project for you.

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            • #7
              Bought cheap? Then "no problem".

              Its condition is pretty much par for the course for a machine coming form a commercial environment, and there is no need to "take it all the way down" if what you mean is a total disassembly.

              Some quite experienced people will remove the body panels, mark and photograph all the wiring, and remove, then take the bare machine out back and hose and brush/wash it down thoroughly including with whatever detergent they want to use. They then thoroughly hose it off and leave it for a week to dry off, use compressed air in nooks and crannies to make sure its dry etc. It should come up clean as a whistle. They then replace the wiring, hook up and test.

              My view would be to NOT disassemle stuff that ain broke and is just dirty.

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              • #8
                FYI the plastic water tank with all the probes running down into it is part of your volumetric dosing system. Yours had to be near one of the last production runs before Cimbali did away with that dosing system.


                Java "Still lovin' his Cimbali!" phile
                Toys! I must have new toys!!!

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                • #9
                  I just missed out on this one! I was going to buy it as a back up machine for my mother in law. She has had her Jnr for nearly 30 years and it still runs a treat! I service it for her once a year and besides rebuilding the steam arm assembly the thing has been indestructible! Looks like a fun project man, you can buy connections and braided hose from bunnings and just lead the hose into a Brita filtered water jug to get it up and running. Just remember it has a manual boiler refill button to keep the boiler topped up. The gauge is on the left. If you need any advice or a free hand let me know, I live in Melbourne also and I know this machine from back to front. Good luck mate!

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                  • #10
                    Hi freddy123 and dans1982, thanks for leaving it for me! I seemed to have lost the photo but I decided that to really get rid of the mould I would completely disassemble it, that was before reading TOK's post. It is nice to have it in bits though so I really know what I have on my hands.
                    Everything that looked safe to go in descaler did so for a couple of hours. The group parts all went into a bucket of urnex overnight and are looking great. The inside of the boiler, heat exchanger and the element have a lot of black scale that doesn't sem to be budging, any advice on how to get rid of it? A lot of it flaked off, and I scrubbed the element and heat exchanger as much as I could but it still looks really black. It is not possible for me to get my hands inside the boiler to scrub that.
                    I have placed an order with coffeeparts.com.au for a few gaskets and a shower screen, besides that she is sweet. I cannot wait to get this thing back together!

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                    • #11
                      Look's like its the same vintage as mine! Mind you, this week trying to replace my group head seal I didn't get it quite right, and when trying to redo it, managed to shear off a bolt in the group head

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by dans1982 View Post
                        Just remember it has a manual boiler refill button to keep the boiler topped up. The gauge is on the left.
                        Are you sure? The reason I ask is that it has a probe going into the top of the boiler which I assumed was for the autofill. Thanks for the offer of help, I will be sure to pm you if I have any trouble and hopefully be able to reward you with a cracking brew!

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                        • #13
                          The button between the two switches is the manual refill. My mother in laws is a bit older than yours but should be fairly similar in function.

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                          • #14
                            The button between the two switches is the brew button. It. is an auto fill model.
                            I know this as I have an identical model.

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                            • #15
                              I stand corrected!

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