Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

You meet the nicest people and coffee machine ramblings of a broken Audrey owner.

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • You meet the nicest people and coffee machine ramblings of a broken Audrey owner.

    So, the Rancilio Audrey (yep, the ugly Circa 1996 older sister of the much appraised Silvia) started making one of those "thick brown smells",got the hiccups, coughed and passed wind a few times, and tripped the overheat protection

    I sighed. Time for an upgrade? Mrs milosnobs.com.au suggested that I do the research. Yeah baby

    Egad...the list of non-boiler thermocouplers out there is unbelievable, and there isn't a single review that hasnt been written by <insert name of manufacturer or sales person> that has anything nice to say about anything costing less than $1k. Twin overhead cam boilers, with a steam wand that will clean the bottom of the shower? Auto decleanserationators that will remove the erk out of the oozits! And if you watch YouTube, there is always some accented individual who says the words "italian pump" "extraction" and "quiet reliable operation" like nothing else. I even read a review that said that someone loved the machine that they have had for over 2 years now, making 5 - 10 coffees a day....only the machine only got released in 2014.

    So...new machine - not happening.... replacing machine through gumtree doesnt look like it is going to happen either. So with a budget of close to nothing, I thought I would pass the machine to a man with a screw driver, and with a finger poised over uncle Google, I took the quest to find out as much as could possibly go wrong or right with my little Audrey.

    A random search and then phone call into the guys at commercial link removed per http://coffeesnobs.com.au/general-ne...icy-rules.html with my questions being "what other machines or hardware do you sell", "how much would you charge for diagnosing my machine", the gentleman on the end of the phone provided me nothing but good advice, a continued passion for telling me that Audrey is just ugly on the outside, but worthy on the inside, and put me onto a parts supplier to help me. He spoke about what could be wrong, how to diagnose, and what to watch out for....all for free. I offered to bring the machine to him, but he told me to keep faith. I even offered to buy parts through him for a reasonable additional handling fee, and instead, kept the confident direction and provided me with CPR instructions for my caffeine Cinderella in an Audrey costume. His passion for coffee was obvious, his understanding and appreciation of my machine - obvious, and his desire to be helpful and not driven by his own pocket - awesome.

    I know that these guys are probably competition to someone on here at Coffeesnobs, but I just thought I would pass on a positive story.

    Will Audrey live through brain surgery conducted by an amateur with imagination? Only time will tell! However, hopefully the man at commercial link removed per http://coffeesnobs.com.au/general-ne...icy-rules.html remains faithful and passionate to the green to brown/black bean of addiction for an eternity.

    May Pablo House remain a distant memory / nightmare of my childhood. May Audrey survive to satisfy my addiction another day.

    cjphawk.
    Last edited by Javaphile; 25 September 2014, 01:31 AM. Reason: Commercial link(s) removed

  • #2
    Great reading hawk.... I'm waiting for the next installment with baited breath !

    cheers !

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by cjphawk View Post
      So, the Rancilio Audrey (yep, the ugly Circa 1996 older sister of the much appraised Silvia) started making one of those "thick brown smells",got the hiccups, coughed and passed wind a few times, and tripped the overheat protection

      I sighed. Time for an upgrade? Mrs milosnobs.com.au suggested that I do the research. Yeah baby

      Egad...the list of non-boiler thermocouplers out there is unbelievable, and there isn't a single review that hasnt been written by <insert name of manufacturer or sales person> that has anything nice to say about anything costing less than $1k. Twin overhead cam boilers, with a steam wand that will clean the bottom of the shower? Auto decleanserationators that will remove the erk out of the oozits! And if you watch YouTube, there is always some accented individual who says the words "italian pump" "extraction" and "quiet reliable operation" like nothing else. I even read a review that said that someone loved the machine that they have had for over 2 years now, making 5 - 10 coffees a day....only the machine only got released in 2014.

      So...new machine - not happening.... replacing machine through gumtree doesnt look like it is going to happen either. So with a budget of close to nothing, I thought I would pass the machine to a man with a screw driver, and with a finger poised over uncle Google, I took the quest to find out as much as could possibly go wrong or right with my little Audrey.

      A random search and then phone call into the guys found on google <name removed> with my questions being "what other machines or hardware do you sell", "how much would you charge for diagnosing my machine", the gentleman on the end of the phone provided me nothing but good advice, a continued passion for telling me that Audrey is just ugly on the outside, but worthy on the inside, and put me onto a parts supplier to help me. He spoke about what could be wrong, how to diagnose, and what to watch out for....all for free. I offered to bring the machine to him, but he told me to keep faith. I even offered to buy parts through him for a reasonable additional handling fee, and instead, kept the confident direction and provided me with CPR instructions for my caffeine Cinderella in an Audrey costume. His passion for coffee was obvious, his understanding and appreciation of my machine - obvious, and his desire to be helpful and not driven by his own pocket - awesome.

      I know that these guys are probably competition to someone on here at Coffeesnobs, but I just thought I would pass on a positive story.

      Will Audrey live through brain surgery conducted by an amateur with imagination? Only time will tell! However, hopefully the helpful bloke remains faithful and passionate to the green to brown/black bean of addiction for an eternity.

      May Pablo House remain a distant memory / nightmare of my childhood. May Audrey survive to satisfy my addiction another day.

      cjphawk.

      Update... Sorry admin for mentioning company. It was just a "pay it forward" not an attempted ad. Story adjusted to remove name.

      Comment


      • #4
        You're normally allowed to mention a company name (as long as it doesn't read like a de facto ad/ commercial posting)....you just can't put the hyperlink to their website in your post.

        Comment


        • #5
          Interested to hear how brain surgery goes cj!! Good luck and don't give up on her yet!!

          Comment


          • #6
            The saga continues...

            Episode two...documentation of trivia. (admin...please delete this drivel if it is annoying you!)

            So, the sun rose this morning and my alarm went off, but the realisation that Audrey was a little closer to meeting her maker meant in turn that I had no desire to remove myself from bed to face another desirable de caffeinated day.

            Suddenly, the knock at the door and the chance that the delivery many had arrived, the house sprang to life. With a kick in my step, I answered the door like a great Dane that hasn't seen his owner in a lifetime.

            Signed for, and the package ripped open in the same way that a child does when Santa comes, and a quick study of the elements, and the surgery commenced.

            • Phillips Head Screwdriver...check.

            • Flat Head Screwdriver .... check.

            • Unplugged from wall... check.


            Off with the covers, out with the old thermostats, in with the new...

            Now....turned Audrey, my long lost extractor of liquid black.... and all started to look good. No residual thick brown smell. I am an expert.

            The old adage an EXPERT is just an EX (meaning former) and a SPURT (Drip under pressure), my newfound expert stance quickly turned to spurt, when an intermittent HISSS, SPIT...HISS, SPIT turned out to be a small droplet of water bubbling up from within the boiler along the path of the insulation from the element. Obvious when you know what you are looking for, but less than obvious when your confidence has put you from expert to uneducated idiot in less than 2 minutes.

            Click image for larger version

Name:	Burnt conductor.png
Views:	1
Size:	565.1 KB
ID:	737835

            So, new plan. New tools required.
            • Pliers - check
            • allen key....check
            • socket set....check
            • hammer.... (some of these suckers have been screwed on hard for 18 years now!)....check
            • another allen key... (the first one must have been made in modern times when allen keys were only ever meant to tighten up ikea timber furniture, not industrial bolts, and my old allen key now resembles a circle)


            With my new found problem at hand, I then find out that there are two sorts of boilers that used to be used in Audrey. The one that is welded (and there is lots of information that is around on how, where to buy a complete boiler, brass, O rings and all...and then there is the other one!!! MINE. This should be a good thing, because lets face it - you can take the element out of the boiler without the need for an oxy welder.

            So, Friday afternoon, boiler apart, I now see that I have a sealed doodat around the thingy, which has the insulation resistance infinity, unless of course - you add water...and who would possibly do that in a coffee machine boiler. HISS, HISS, SPIT, SPIT. Given proximity to power, and a general fear of frying, no further action will occur until replacement part can be found.

            Click image for larger version

Name:	Element.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	59.8 KB
ID:	737834

            Component of the coffee machine are now resting quietly on the table, next to my head - realising that it will be after the weekend before I can move to the next stage.

            Wish Audrey luck. She is on life support.

            As a last question...does anyone know what the following is. It has a single hose into the water supply, and has power and earth....but no other connection to the machine.
            Click image for larger version

Name:	Thngy 1.png
Views:	1
Size:	792.7 KB
ID:	737833

            Comment


            • #7
              Your thingy looks a bit like a diphragm pressure switch. Does Audrey have a low water level alarm /light? If so that is what it is for.

              Comment


              • #8
                Good to see some progress hawk... fingers crossed for a happy ending !
                If your quest to resurrect Audrey does not go to plan, you can perhaps turn your attention to writing instead. When you've sold your first million books, you'll have much moola to lash out and buy the best coffee machine ever.
                What's that you're saying ?..... you could never be unfaithful to Audrey just 'cos she's hissing & spitting & farting !

                Cheers

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by cjphawk View Post
                  Episode two...documentation of trivia. (admin...please delete this drivel if it is annoying you!)
                  Not to worry cjphawk! Here at CS we have a long history of tale telling: http://coffeesnobs.com.au/roasters/2...t-roaster.html (D@mn! All the picture links are broken. I'll have to dig the photos up and fix that.)


                  Java "Write on!" phile


                  edited in later: Hurray! All the pics have been restored to the http://coffeesnobs.com.au/roasters/2...t-roaster.html thread!
                  Last edited by Javaphile; 27 September 2014, 08:39 PM. Reason: Added info
                  Toys! I must have new toys!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    With Audrey on the mend and still waiting for her hero to find the proper size band aid, we'd, well at least I, want to hear you write some more. You're better than most of the authors I read. So, do tell of your exploits, the lengths you go to to get a good cup of coffee, what kind of roast and where it comes from. (That's country, not store, per forum guidelines, etc.) l am find of Hawaiian Kona, Jamaica Blue, and a certain Italian company that just started making for the USA. Good stuff. I've got an ancient Briel, with no English words anywhere on it. She has been in surgery as often as Audrey. But I used to repair small appliances, and I know the difference between a whozit and wassit. And that's about all. If you are allowed to mention a company without a hyperlink. Levazza classico is the brand for the USA. There are three other roasts that go all the way to espresso. My Briel is an espresso machine, have a decent Cuisinart for coffee. But I used to have to import the Levazza espresso from an Italian company in 5 pound bags. (Do you have any idea how long it takes to use 5 pounds of ESPRESSO for one person? Anyway, the best of luck to Audrey and keep writing.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I would like to thank you all for your words of encouragement. It is certainly helping me through this difficult time (Audrey in surgery and all).

                      My children (well, I have been told that they are my children, but they do not appreciate my separation anxiety from Audrey's output) are all fearful that your positive words about my writing is further encouraging my ramblings..... But hey, if Audrey doesn't make it through surgery..there is a reasonable chance that they will see an epic meltdown. (I wonder if they are still selling boiler components from that Japanese Nuclear power plant? How many grams of spent enriched uranium would it take to run a lifetime supply of hot water?)

                      "I can't live, if living is without brew...!"

                      I took a slightly new approach, and have a professional element maker manufacturing a coil to go back into Audrey, and there is only 4 days to go before she should be ready.

                      Due to work commitments, (training)as well as a fear that I keep researching serial killers and wondering if they too had "Audrey deprivation", I am sitting in sunny NSW for a couple of days, which brings up a new - and potentially more controversial topic. Is there a single decent coffee anywhere within walking distance of Darling Harbour? I have now tried, and tried, and tried. I have tasted better from McDonalds before they introduced the McCafe. The brewing skills here (not inserting the names of said establishments for fear of an uprising that was last seen in Beijing)seems to involve getting water from Adelaide, filtering it in the Yarra, and then squeezing it through beans that have been pressed under the armpit of a "before shot" of that guy on The Biggest Loser. The beans have the flavour that I could only imagine have come from a slow cooking process in a place called a crematorium.

                      "Fighting words" you say? "Bring it on", I say. My Audrey in hospital....a lack of a decent extraction....burnt beans, temperatures of water that defy physics, (I bought one yesterday, that only just cooled down enough for me to throw it out today without melting the rubbish bin). All this has me quoting Shreck "I am a donkey on the edge".

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Its a plasticky piece of espresso-ware....

                        How does it comp to the silvia?

                        Looks like it could beat the Delonghi EC155 (although its disposable)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Whilst searching for rancilio machines on ebay...

                          there's another goodie, the lucy....

                          Looks like a Rocky/Silvia wedge in....

                          And the right side of the machine looks like a very compacted Silvia......

                          Review on cgeek....

                          http://coffeegeek.com/reviews/consum...io_lucy/latest

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Audrey, the gal the the heart of brass.

                            Not a lot to say here really. I made the horrible mistake when talking to my element maker for my boiler, when I rang him up last week "are we there yet?", I asked like an impatient puppy.

                            He said "Ive been really busy, would you mind if I took another week",

                            And I said "Sure, why not" - and the sarcastic tone and disappointment didn't get picked up due to my hanging up the phone and dropping to the floor crying like a chocolate deprived 3 year old at the supermarket.

                            A week later, I was still making weesonable coffee on the stovetop. Weesonable because it is kinda OK, a little sour....it has the head and the body of a retired football player (thick and gritty) yet still tastes better than anything that I bought in Sydney a couple of weeks ago.

                            Beautiful Monday, the boiler element maker calls me, the job is ready for collection (happiness, joy, kicking of heels), 5 minutes before he closes, and it is a 20 minute drive................... <insert profanity>, floor, supermarket, NO CHOCOLATE, 3 year old repeat. The dog went hiding.

                            The morning came, the alarm set nice and early, and out of bed off to get the boiler. The inside bit is all shiny and new. A further stop to get an O ring for the boiler seal, and whilst the bloke at the spares place is as dear as poison, the alternative is to buy a non standard O ring, fit it and hope like hell. Reading up case studies, it appears that one should not necessarily skimp on O ring procurement <reference http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Shuttle_Challenger_disaster>

                            Scourer, red wine vinegar, and the cleansing of the boiler commenced. Putting the doodats onto the thingies in roughly the same order as I took them off, and all looks good.

                            Primed, heated, tested into the cup - a good 80 degrees (using a meat thermometer into the cup) pour, and producing steam - all looking OK.....

                            First taste test was a slight hint of vinegar (after taste from cleaning) which then came clear on the second pour.

                            Following morning, test almost concluded, although there appears to be a bit of a puddle under the machine. 7am brew was still back to normal though - 4 weeks of sadness now replaced with a smile as I left for work. Hopefully her bladder control issue will be less brain surgery and more "didn't do that pipey thing up hard enough to the brassy thing".

                            My Audrey - She looks plasticky, but she is pure metal. She is pretty ugly with her clothes on at the best of times, but under the covers she has a heart of brass.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hi Ray,

                              Not too much plastic in Audrey, although she looks more plasticky than she is. Back cover and under the group head. What she lacks in Stainless steel (shiny and dintable), she makes up for in hardness and curves.

                              If I were to rule the world, she would have a light coming on and off to tell you when she is up to temp. I assume from other peoples posts - that Silvias lights turn on and off?

                              cjphawk

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X