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Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

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  • Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

    I already posted a thread a few years back about restoring a Sama club lever machine. That job went quite smooth as the machine was actually in decent order to start with. I am now in the process of restoring a second virtually identical machine: this one is a real pain. The machine is pretty thrashed: all the wiring is kaput- practically non-existent, the element has had it, the p-stat is gone, the pressure gauge has corroded and seized... and I am having issues with a boiler (that came to me with +1KG of lime scale/concrete inside)...

    So I will need to fully re-wire it, install a new element, pstat and pressure gauge, have the boiler professionally attended to, strip and repaint the chassis and cabinet (I am thinking hammertone paint...), and replace seals and all nuts and bolts, etc.... oh, and also have new steam and water tubes specially made...

    Much of which I have no idea about how to do... :-?


    The good news is the lever group works perfectly. Currently I have it mounted on a Ponte Vecchio Lusso machine pumping out perfect shots  :

    I would like to document it all here if I can get past the first hurdle:

    I am going to start this thread with the boiler because if I cant get it restored -I doubt I can ever finish this machine. I am hoping someone here on CS will be able to help me with this as the boiler is going to require skills and knowledge I dont have.

    Here are the issues: I have soaked the boiler in an acid bath for the past few weeks (dont ask me what type of acid as I dont know :-? it wasnt my acid bath... )- I have nearly removed all the scale but there is still some inside- it is very hard to get at. Not sure how to attack that next... but before I do some other issue have arisen:

    the acid has completely dissolved a (somewhat rusty) metal nut that was welded to the base of the boiler. This nut turned to dust! It left some divots in the base of the boiler where it was welded (see pictures). I am going to need to get a new nut welded here- and also have the divots capped/sealed/patched.

    The next issue is the lower brass tube that links to the water sight glass level. The weld/join to the boiler has failed, and the tube swivels around a little. It will need to be re-welded/joined/braised? I dont even know what the correct term is for this kind of joint. The fact that it has failed concerns me a little: I am not sure if it was the acid- there seems to have already been a leak at this point judging by water/scale marks that were there before the acid bath- however it seems that it is has failed - perhaps all the weld/seams may be weak and need strengthening?

    I know nothing about welding- and dont know what the boiler is made from exactly?

    Are there any experts out there who could help me restore this boiler? Boilermakers?










  • #2
    Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

    anyone? Boilermaker, tinker, radiator repair person?

    Happy to trade you for something nice?

    getting desperate here...

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

      I know a bloke who knows a bloke 

      Ill show said bloke this thread and see what he thinks, but he is in Melbourne.

      The boiler looks to be stainless so the acid bath should not affect the structural integrity of those welds if they were not cracked already, but brazing copper fittings into stainless is pretty difficult as far as I know.

      It might be that new threaded fittings have to be turned from stainless then welded in to the boiler, and the appropriate brass hardware is added to the pipes. All doable, but potentially a lot of work for the right person.

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      • #4
        Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

        Thanks Rick any help/advice appreciated...

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

          well... with no help from my fellow CSrs- I managed all by my lonesome... ... :-? ha ha. Only joking... and actually its not quite true- I took a hint from a thread where Andy suggested radiator repair shops for a boiler weld job... I found a local outfit who welded up my boiler on the spot for a carton of beer (VB of course).

          The bloke did a top welding job repairing the boiler: a new nut and stand for the base and water sight glass line repaired.

          The deal was sweetened when they let me use their sandblaster to blast the paint off the chassis and machine cabinet... Man what a joy sandblasting is!! worth every beer... 10 minutes blasting and the parts are back to raw steel.

          a few more days in my own special brew of lemon juice/vinegar/citric/CLR acid bath and I finally managed to remove every last scrap of scale from the boiler. It is as clean as a whistle. Originally the internal thermosyhon pipes were completely blocked by very hard scale. The acid bath seems to have anodised (?) some of the stainless boiler with copper from the pipes...

          Anyhow the main work is now done- the boiler is fine and nothing can stop me! From here its powdercoat (or hammertone?) for the chassis and cabinet- perhaps even for the stainless instrument panel... I am thinking very original 50s tones for this machine...

          Once thats done I need to work on the electrics. I am looking for a suitable P-stat. I want one that can be adjusted from 0.8 to 1.4 BAR or thereabouts. Anyone have a spare floating around? I am also after the most retro power switch and pilot lights I can find.

          I have ordered some high temp wire- I guess I will need a soldering iron next...

          heres where we are up to so far:







          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

            inspiring! Good to know that businesses like that still exist - and theyll have a story to tell about the day some bloke brought in a coffee machine to get welded and sand-blasted!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

              Nice one, Jack.

              The bloke who knew a bloke was a dead end, turns out hes shut up shop. Looks like they did a radiant job though.

              I would leave the front panel stainless 8-) but hammertone sounds great for the cabinet.

              Keep us posted!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                things moved too quickly I got impatient with the hammertone... After I had painted most of the cabinet I realised I had not gone thick enough on the first true coat- so then I overdid it :-/ The hammertone affect is patchy. I only had a small section on the base left to do- I did that and nailed the tequnique- it looks superb- only problem thats the one place when no one will ever see it...

                My plan is to apply another coat properly in a few days time- unless I hear otherwise... Any one out there with hammertone experience? Is laying another coat over a slightly patchy one going to be a problem? can I sand the first coat first?





                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                  the restoration continues... looking better and better. All the hardware is ready and I have purchased a soldering iron in anticipation of electrical work... I am going to need a P-stat, and am also having difficulty finding a rocker switch of the correct cutout size (38mm/20mm)...
                  I am considering making the cutout for the rocker larger- installing a PID controller, and drilling another hole for the power switch. If I can run two probes off the one PID- I will insert on in the neck of the group head purely to read temperature at the group- the other will be attached to the boiler and will control the temperature with the P-stat inline.... I can fit the SSR (whatever that actually is) under the frame- and there is room for the PID in the cabinet...

                  I have been inspired to do this having read this thread about Piding a Pavoni:

                  http://www.home-barista.com/levers/l...ow-t17073.html

                  here is the work in progress:





                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                    i have some rockers but they are 30mm H cutout x 22mm W
                    1 red + 2 green. italian switches suitable for a retro machine

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                      These switches sound good... I am trying to find vintage parts in keeping with the machine- I am using those jewel pilot lights-do you know what the outer dimensions of the bezel are? I assume the bezel diameter is a bit larger than the switch body?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                        Originally posted by 6F736E6E79726875727D7F737A7A79791C0 link=1320912156/8#8 date=1323156954
                        SSR (whatever that actually is)
                        Solid State Relay. Depending on the use, a relay can be mechanical (ie switch on / off a light, bore pump, fan, etc) or solid state, which has no internal mechanical parts but uses diodes and other electrickery.

                        mechanical relays usually burn out after x00,000 or million switches, and arent made for switching fast, whereas a SSR can usually switch large loads in the order of milli or microseconds.

                        If your PID used a mechanical relay and a duty cycle of, say 10Hz, it would burn out after 2.7 hours of continuous use...

                        hope that helps

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                          Thanks heaps- I know I could have googled...

                          I am thinking about using the PID set pictured.

                          it looks like just the ticket- and small enough to squueze in- just...

                          from what I understand it would be possible to control the boiler with one probe (and the SSR) and read (only) the temp off another from the group head? Woukld it be possible to set the PID display to show boiler temp at the top and group temp on the bottom? Or do these displays only show set temperature and actual temperature?

                          One consideration is that the face of the pid will be just behind the milk frother... I wonder if their is a PID with a clear face cover? ;-):





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                          • #14
                            Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                            Hard to tell but from those specs it looks like you cant display an unrelated temp, only the measured "PV" or set point "SV". Is there two temp probe inputs? Looks like there are two types of input but perhaps you can only use either. I should qualify Ive never fitted one to a coffee machine!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Sama Kind of Monster? Sama Club Lever Coffee Machine Restoration MKII

                              I was wondering about that as well- a lot of them list 2 or more inputs... I am a complete ignoramus when it comes to components electrical... and have never PIDed anything... I have been thinking I may first restore the machine as normal- then install the pid outside in a small box to test how it works. If it works well- then I will commit and cut the hole in the cabinet...

                              I would really appreciate any advice/tips from anyone who knows about PIDS...

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