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  • PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

    I have 3 days to decide on the purchase of a used OSCAR.

    1.5yr used nuovo simonelli oscar $500.00cdn

    OR

    ecm botticelli 2 $900.00cdn

    OR

    isomac venus $900.00+cdn


    Im totally leaning towards the OSCAR but its used and i was looking for some shiny metal.


    IDEAS?..this is my price range. under $1000.00

  • #2
    Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

    Hi Pravspresso,

    Firstly, I hope you have already got a good grinder?
    If not you wont get the best out of any of the machines mentioned,
    and in that case the Oscar would be best buy,
    as you could also afford a decent grinder with the budget you have.

    If you already have a good grinder,
    then they are all good machines.

    Much is made of the ability of HX machines like the Oscar in regards to simultaneous/instant steaming and brewing compared to the single boiler e.g. Botticelli, where you have to wait for boiler to get to steam temp,
    however in practice, if you are working the shot,
    so you will cut it when it begins to go blond, then you wont be thinking about steaming milk.
    And I find that by the time I have got the milk jug out of the fridge, and emptied the puck from the PF, then my Silvia is ready to steam anyway.

    Botticelli is a good single boiler machine from all reports I have heard, even better with a PID on it, so if you might like tinkering or modifying in the future, it does have that option.
    Oscar, and any other HX machine will not benefit from PID as a general rule.

    I dont know much about the Isomac Venus so cant comment any further on that one.

    Oscar I believe is very competent for the cost, especially in this case, as long as you are confident it is working properly, and has been looked after.

    Happy deciding

    Regards
    Bullitt

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

      The oscar is a STEAL at that price....even though it is used....if you can get over the ABS housing that is

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

        I GOT IT!!!!

        he replaced the p-stat with a commercial one..boiler element blew..had it replaced and had heavy duty wiring installed

        under warranty.

        Im ready for some HX espresso now!!! instead of my gaggia!!!...

        Gentleman if you have any advice for me on my new journey with the OSCAR..please dont hesitate to advise.

        cheers!!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

          heh! nice work...what grinder have you paired it with?

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

            Originally posted by pravspresso link=1180485866/0#3 date=1180973410
            I GOT IT!!!!

            he replaced the p-stat with a commercial one..boiler element blew..had it replaced and had heavy duty wiring installed

            under warranty.

            Im ready for some HX espresso now!!! instead of my gaggia!!!...

            Gentleman if you have any advice for me on my new journey with the OSCAR..please dont hesitate to advise.

            cheers!!
            All the best. Let us know how you get on. Remember any new machine will probably land you on your face until you get it ready. Any of the machines you mentioned will give you room to grow. Have you seen this article on the hx flush- if you dont do it you may be disappointed with over temp coffee (please ignore the advice if you are familiar with it already)?:
            http://www.home-barista.com/hx-love.html
            Brett

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

              Yello.

              I have the Rancilio Rocky. Its been a true workhorse.

              I have heard of the flush issue. Ill read up some more.

              Being new to the HX system.. i looked at the hydraulic schematic.

              How often does one have to descale?? My instructions suggest using the soft water

              to extend life of element. I dont have access or $$ to get soft water going. I also

              heard that distilled water is not suggested because the electronic fill detector will not

              work with distilled water.

              cheers all.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

                I have to add this in.

                I just got it..and the seller....amazing guy.

                Gave me four new gaskets to replace every year as well a convex tamper and another high end

                tamper..of which the cost was around 220 buckaroos.

                Im stoked.

                It was packaged superbbblyyy...in a "la scala" box with all the fixins of foam.

                cheers!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

                  Sounds like youve done really well there prav 8-),

                  Once youve got her dialled in (wont take too long) Im pretty sure youre going to be stoked with the quality of the brew. All the best mate ,

                  Mal.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: OH NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   WHAT IS

                    IT WAS TOO GOOD TOOOO BE TRUUEEEEEE>....

                    Everything works..except the temperatures at the grouphead were only 165F max even after 2hrs of heating time.????????

                    Is this a bad heating element? Steam was insane.Porta as hot as ever. Pump worked fine, lights all reflected inner workings properly.

                    As a note: former user had it on 24/7 using soft water and did have the heating element replaced after 1yr as well as the pstat with a commercial one.

                    Woz with me.

                    My gaggia outshined the oscar in a heartbeat in terms of shot quality. But of course
                    the oscar only had 165F!!!!!! at group.

                    OMG.

                    WHAT IS GOING ON????

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

                      Many group heads need heating- depends on whether thermosyphoned or not (water being cycled around inside of head). This is all part of the hx flush I talked about before- You need to flush to rid the pipes of water that is superheated because of sitting in the steam boiler (designed to be at temp when running fairly constantly as in a cafe situation) but also in some cases to heat the head.
                      Unless of course you mean the water running out after an hx flush was only 73C (165F).
                      Dont panic- unless something is seriously wrong, it may be the old bit about unfamiliar machines landing you on your bum until you know their idiosyncracies. You wouldnt be the first and certainly not the last!
                      If you explain in more detail about the temp, how measured, after what process etc, Im sure sometone will be able to advise you.
                      Also if you are on an unfamiliar machine, it will pretty often make inferior coffee- remember it is barista (including familiarity with the machine as much as their technique) then a mix of machine and coffee that decides the results.
                      Brett
                      ps what pressure is the steam boiler running at ( you said new pressurestat fitted)?
                      This link may be of use:
                      http://www.themeyers.org/HomeRoast/Topic12527.htm

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

                        Originally posted by telemaster link=1180485866/0#10 date=1181282146
                        ps what pressure is the steam boiler running at ( you said new pressurestat fitted)?
                        Thatd be my 1st suspicion too. You said the previous owner replced it with a commercial one but did he/she have it adjusted correctly? As an indicator, how is the steam pressure?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

                          Hi guys,

                          He had it tested 2 weeks ago at 9bar pressure. Is that the answer you needed?

                          I followed his instructions for bleeding steam waiting 15min. and doing a blind pull.

                          Then waiting and doing another pull. This did nothing to change temps. Still at 150sF.

                          Last night i left it on all night..came downstairs..and did a first pull at 180F.

                          I thought this worked but the subsequent blind pull w/portafilter in came out at 154F.

                          So i sat there and waited for 10minutes and did another pull..at 150sF again.

                          I turned the steam valve on and off to get the boiler to click on and off..

                          I have noticed something however...im not sure if this is normal.

                          I can put my hand under the billowing water fall like steam and its not burning hot.

                          Its spewing steam insanely but the steam is not ultra ultra hot..Although i did steam

                          two 10oz tubs of milk in like 30 seconds and they were up to temperatures of 150F

                          170F in no time flat..SO that probably means nothing...

                          DID this info. help?

                          Im a little pissed right now.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE..

                            Does the machine have a gauge on it- the boiler pressure would read something between 1 and 1.3 bars- thats steam pressure not brew pressure (which is the 9 bars you are talking about). Boiler pressure is what decides the heat of your water, both throught the hx tubes (coffee) and the steam.

                            Re the steam- steam is steam- it must be very hot to even be steam. What makes it not seem hot is that you are dealing with relatively dry steam and so it doesnt burn as much as wet steam.

                            You still havent mentioned if you have done the flush through the group head until the water no longer dances and sizzles. This may be what you need to bring the temperature up (if you arent doing it). I really cant see the point of bleeding steam except for steaming milk. It wont affect the brew temperature, just the wetness of the steam.

                            It may also be that the boiler pressure is set way too low- my understanding is that this machine doesnt have a boiler gauge. It may need a service, but let us know about your flushing routine first. I think unless the flushing helps, you need some professional advice.
                            Brett

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: flushing routine

                              I need professional help for sure.

                              And thanks for the pressure issue thing..im still a newbie.

                              I will get it checked...

                              I was wondering though..the thermosyypphhonnnn...is that automatic???..

                              I only have one button..the brew button..I press it for about 30-45 seconds and hold the digital temp monitor just below

                              portafilter but the temps never change..always 154F....only once after an entire night of sitting there..it got to 180F.

                              and then subsequently dropped to 154F again..after doing blind pulls.

                              I dont know about the thermosyph..i know it has one..but those flushes are when i do blind pulls..no?

                              i did a series of blind pulls..which should have got temps up. but didnt...of course i gave some lag time..for it too heat up

                              again and the boiler was flickering on and off during this time.

                              I guess it must be boiler pressure?

                              Comment

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