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  • Linea PB experiences

    Hi all,

    Long time lurker first time poster. I'm looking at opening a new cafe and sizing up equipment. I've actually never worked on an LM before but am a fan of the Linea based on where we've had good coffee here and servicing. I was leaning towards a 3 group Linea PB model but have heard varied things about its thermal stability as well as some of the boilers in the last few shipments being unreliable. Can anyone elaborate on their experiences with the PB?

    We're expecting to do around 30-40kg based on previous experience and not so much focused on rotating blacks so that individual PID control is not a big concern.

    I'd also be open to the Classic for more known reliability I guess. The only things that turn me off the GB5 and FB80 are their clunky designs
    Last edited by Wasabisauce; 4 October 2015, 11:48 AM.

  • #2
    I've used a PB, only as a barista, not as a tech so can't comment on internal design. Usability...great! Like anything LM works just like it should

    Comment


    • #3
      I can't speak for the PB but I work on 3 Linea Classics, 1 FB/70 and 2 GB5s.

      I must admit I don't care for the GB5's exterior design- it's ugly as sin - blocky, can't see anything beyond it. The two group is even uglier than the three group IMHO - they're hulking edifices of steel.

      I can't fault the Classic: easy to service, easy to get parts, easy to set and change PID, easy to move, solid, easy on the eye and easy for the machine operator to program.

      Comment


      • #4
        The PB could reasonably be described as GB5 innards in a Linea body, having GB5 style taps and wands and electronics. To my eyes they look a bit like a parts bin special from the operator's side - the gauge, display and buttons all look like they have been pinched from different machines. The later design taps are fiddly to remove and service, being mounted on brackets that are fastened with 4 tiny screws each that are very easy to damage or lose when removing the taps for service.
        We are a bit suspicious of the quality of the stainless steel in recent Marzocco shipments, as we have recently had quite a few boilers scale up at locations that had not previously had scale issues, and have even had machines corrode pinhole leaks through group caps.
        Personally I'd go a Linea Classic over a PB.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Wasabisauce View Post
          Hi all,

          Long time lurker first time poster. I'm looking at opening a new cafe and sizing up equipment. I've actually never worked on an LM before but am a fan of the Linea based on where we've had good coffee here and servicing. I was leaning towards a 3 group Linea PB model but have heard varied things about its thermal stability as well as some of the boilers in the last few shipments being unreliable. Can anyone elaborate on their experiences with the PB?

          We're expecting to do around 30-40kg based on previous experience and not so much focused on rotating blacks so that individual PID control is not a big concern.

          I'd also be open to the Classic for more known reliability I guess. The only things that turn me off the GB5 and FB80 are their clunky designs
          G'day Wasabisauce

          I have only used the PB once - no way is it a classic's brother, more like a reputed bastard cousin.

          One of the many "real Lineas" I encountered did over 400 coffees in under three hours without really noticing (till receipts - they use naked p/f's). I have no reason to doubt any of the other ones (well over a dozen) would do likewise. No brainer really.

          TampIt

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by MorganGT View Post
            The PB could reasonably be described as GB5 innards in a Linea body, having GB5 style taps and wands and electronics. To my eyes they look a bit like a parts bin special from the operator's side - the gauge, display and buttons all look like they have been pinched from different machines. The later design taps are fiddly to remove and service, being mounted on brackets that are fastened with 4 tiny screws each that are very easy to damage or lose when removing the taps for service.
            We are a bit suspicious of the quality of the stainless steel in recent Marzocco shipments, as we have recently had quite a few boilers scale up at locations that had not previously had scale issues, and have even had machines corrode pinhole leaks through group caps.
            Personally I'd go a Linea Classic over a PB.
            Can I ask what your location is? And how expensive are damaged/scaled boilers to fix?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by MorganGT View Post
              We are a bit suspicious of the quality of the stainless steel in recent Marzocco shipments, as we have recently had quite a few boilers scale up at locations that had not previously had scale issues, and have even had machines corrode pinhole leaks through group caps.
              This problem is more due to the fact that s/s is susceptible to pinhole corrosion in the presence of dissolved chlorine compounds when under pressure and high temperatures. Unfortunately, this describes a s/s boiler to a 'T'...

              The best way to avoid the problem, is to ensure that your water filtration system removes all traces of chlorine and its compounds, before water enters the machine. It is a well known problem with a range of La Marzocco machines (and others more recently) because of the use of s/s boilers coupled with inadequate water filtration at the site of installation...

              Mal.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Dimal View Post
                This problem is more due to the fact that s/s is susceptible to pinhole corrosion in the presence of dissolved chlorine compounds when under pressure and high temperatures. Unfortunately, this describes a s/s boiler to a 'T'...

                The best way to avoid the problem, is to ensure that your water filtration system removes all traces of chlorine and its compounds, before water enters the machine. It is a well known problem with a range of La Marzocco machines (and others more recently) because of the use of s/s boilers coupled with inadequate water filtration at the site of installation...

                Mal.
                We've been through a range of different filters trying to find something reliable for the job - currently we are using Brita Purity Finest C150 filters on anything with a stainless boiler. We haven't had a lot of issues on machines in Melbourne so far - the bulk of the issues have been in Geelong and Ballarat, where the water supply seems more prone to creating corrosion and scale problems more quickly in stainless boilers than Melbourne water.

                Comment


                • #9
                  An additional problem is that if TDH/hardness are high, acidification of the water occurs and the result is cya later LM boiler.

                  Brita have a new product due to hit the market which will deal with TDH up to about 250ppm and I suspect that these installations will be a better fit for it...
                  Last edited by TC; 17 October 2015, 05:40 PM. Reason: tpyo

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dimal View Post
                    This problem is more due to the fact that s/s is susceptible to pinhole corrosion in the presence of dissolved chlorine compounds when under pressure and high temperatures. Unfortunately, this describes a s/s boiler to a 'T'...

                    The best way to avoid the problem, is to ensure that your water filtration system removes all traces of chlorine and its compounds, before water enters the machine. It is a well known problem with a range of La Marzocco machines (and others more recently) because of the use of s/s boilers coupled with inadequate water filtration at the site of installation...

                    Mal.
                    Yep, and the root cause is the EU legislating to use stainless in all espresso boilers as brass is toxic. Chlorine will nuke virtually any stainless, as the (anon) WA chain found out when they totalled 28 Stadas in less than three months. Of course, the extra bonuses in our water here did not help either - just hastened the havoc.

                    Leaving tap water exposed to air for 30 minutes will also remove 95+% of any chlorine compound and may help a little in some places.


                    TampIt

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by TampIt View Post
                      Leaving tap water exposed to air for 30 minutes will also remove 95+% of any chlorine compound
                      Works Ok for straight chlorine injection disinfection systems but doesn't work so well where chloramine is the compound used unfortunately...

                      Mal.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TampIt View Post
                        Leaving tap water exposed to air for 30 minutes will also remove 95+% of any chlorine compound and may help a little in some places.


                        TampIt
                        In fact, where chloramine is used, leaving water out will in fact concentrate the chlorine compounds due to any water evaporation that takes place

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          So are C150 filters good enough for this? My ECM T is SS boiler, and I'm getting spooked by this thread...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by readeral View Post
                            So are C150 filters good enough for this? My ECM T is SS boiler, and I'm getting spooked by this thread...
                            Chloramine can be filtered out... just not blown off

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Vinitasse View Post
                              Chloramine can be filtered out... just not blown off
                              Yep...

                              Best and safest way is to use a dedicated activated carbon filter before the standard 'softening' filter...

                              Mal.

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