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  • So fed up with sunbeam machine

    Hi all,

    Its probably not a good time to post when i am so frustrated but oh well..

    I have a cheap $150 sunbeam machine with new unpressuried basket, and i grind with sunbeam $200 (sorry cant remember name) grinder. Lately i have noticed that one in three times the water cant drip through and literally explodes and leaks alll over the top..

    I have tried cleaning group head etc to no success..

    If i buy rancilio, would this solve this problem once and for all? I have wasted so much bean coz of this leaking problem..

  • #2
    Sounds like you are either grinding too fine or the basket is blocked. I had a cheap machine for a longtime and upgraded to a better machine (not the best but better) and I found that the more progessional home machines have more pressure and can handle finer grinds. When I had my cheaper machine I found that it was common for the basket to get blocked and I had to replace the basket a couple of times.

    If you upgrade you won't look back.

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Young,

      How old are the beans you are using and have you tried adjusting the grind? Beans become temperamental as they age over the weeks which means adjustment to the grind is normally necessary. You can go up to a rancillio and will this fix the problem? i don't know maybe however you should look at how grind, tamp and how you prepare your coffee.

      Its very easy to blame the machine (like i have in the past) instead of your technique. With that in mind a rancillio Silva (which i assume you are talking about) would be a step up. However your grinder depending on what it is may also play a part in your current problems.... Looking at a new grinder is as important if not more than the machine itself... A lot to think about and a lot to ponder.

      Cheers,

      Chris

      Comment


      • #4
        If the water spurts out around the top of the portafilter, sounds like the group head seal is worn out. These are cheap and easy to replace. On ebay there are plenty of sellers with new group head seals, you'd be looking at about $5-10 for the seal and 5 minutes to replace it.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thank you so much for all replies,.. Just one more..

          https://www.dropbox.com/s/fafsfqbxqj...2014.53.16.jpg

          I have taken down what i think is the group seal as you can see above, they seem to be fine? Will i still need to replace the rubber part?

          Just having one last thought about saving this poor little machine before i throw it out..

          Comment


          • #6
            um..
            just wasted another 4 doubleshot basket full of grinds going from grinder setting 8 to 9 to 10 to 11 to 12.
            12 gave me about 10mls of coffee mixed with 10mls water leakage, which i am now committed to drinking as i can't keep going today!
            It's weird coz some days same grind will give me fine result (flowing honey) but other days don't.
            It must be like the above poster explaining about humidity, ageing of the bean etc..
            I have started bidding on ebay for coffee-a-roma rancilio silvia from melbourne..

            If anyone can comment on the condition of my group seal will be appreciated though and it will save my machine from going to salvos..

            Comment


            • #7
              394]https://www.dropbox.com/s/fafsfqbxqj...2014.53.16.jpg

              I have taken down what i think is the group seal as you can see above, they seem to be fine? Will i still need to replace the rubber part?

              Just having one last thought about saving this poor little machine before i throw it out..[/QUOTE]

              That rubber part is the group head seal yes that would be replaced. It doesnt look too bad though. it may not be as rigid as it should be or could have developed weak spots which the high pressure of extraction would find.

              For like $5-10 you might as well give it a try. If it doesnt fix the problem, the group head collar may have worn and cant lock the portafilter in as tight as it should be. This happened to a cheap breville im fixing currently. A new collar is about $20, depending on the model.

              Also, just to check, the new basket you're using is a direct replacement for your machine isnt it? If it's designed for another brand machine it may not seal properly on your group head. Chances are that isnt the case, but we'd better check.

              Comment


              • #8
                thanks, will give it a try if this bidding doesn't end well.
                i just looked at the collar and my collar is actually made of plastic not metal - would this have something to do with the problem?
                I can't feel obvious cracks or defect running my finger around inside of it..

                Comment


                • #9
                  Yes, having metal on metal (I.e. portafilter on collar) doesnt create a good seal as the metal doesnt flax and prwss against each other. Even in a metal collar there'll be a hard plastic or compound rim that assists in keeping peessure onto the portafilter.

                  As plastic does when it rubs on metal, it'll wear out. You wont really feel the problem, it doesnt even need to be much wear, just enough to provide a weak spot for the pressure to exploit.
                  There should be a few screws holding the collar on, can just remove it and check for any wear.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by youngchul76 View Post
                    If i buy rancilio, would this solve this problem once and for all? I have wasted so much bean coz of this leaking problem..
                    There are some basics that will apply regardless of whether you use a Sunbeam or a Rancilio. Getting the grind right, the tamp right and the filling of the filter basket right will apply no matter the machine. If you grind too fine or tamp too hard on a fine grind you can choke the machine and the excess of pressure can then blow past the group seal if it can't flow through the grinds and out the bottom of the basket. This is more likely on a machine without an OPV like your Sunbeam. Check the link below for some pictures of how your grinds should look at the end of the article - "Grind Basics".

                    Compak K3 Touch and Elite Details

                    Check your tamp pressure on a set of bathroom scales and aim for around 15kg of pressure consistently.

                    Fill you basket to a point so that when you have tamped you are just short of getting an imprint of the shower screen.
                    Last edited by CafeLotta; 21 April 2013, 06:57 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      ah... i always admire you guys who have this genuine tendency to want to help people - not getting anything out of it but genuine desire to help another coffee addict

                      ok, i read that grind pinch test article and will try.

                      As for the collar - i think trying to remove the whole machine apart will be too much for me (i'm guessing you have to, as there is no visible screw from outside like for the group seal metal part) so I might give it a pass.. I looked around on ebay for replacement and just wanted to confirm - my current one is a very malleable rubber, but one on ebay seems like a plastic??

                      eBay link removed per the http://coffeesnobs.com.au/general-ne...icy-rules.html
                      Last edited by Javaphile; 22 April 2013, 11:24 AM. Reason: eBay link removed

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                      • #12
                        btw, i found a pm message from someone re grinders coffee shop selling silvia for 500!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
                        how do they slash off another 100 from the lowest price that i ever knew????(coffee-a-roma)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          sorry, just before i go to sleep, i just remembered..

                          i bought this 1kg bag of supermarket brand (harris colombian premium reserve) coz it was on sale for 25% off for $17.

                          IT IS ONE OF THE BEST BEANS I HAVE TRIED ON MY CHEAP MACHINE TO THIS DATE INCLUDING CAMPOS, COFFEE ALCHEMY ETC ETC...

                          Maybe that says it all about my taste

                          I dare you try it!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by youngchul76 View Post
                            sorry, just before i go to sleep, i just remembered..

                            i bought this 1kg bag of supermarket brand (harris colombian premium reserve) coz it was on sale for 25% off for $17.

                            IT IS ONE OF THE BEST BEANS I HAVE TRIED ON MY CHEAP MACHINE TO THIS DATE INCLUDING CAMPOS, COFFEE ALCHEMY ETC ETC...

                            Maybe that says it all about my taste

                            I dare you try it!
                            That's a dare I won't take you up on, it may not tell us much about your taste but speaks volumes about your lack of experience.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Haha..yes, i am a fan of CS but also of ozbargain so u can tell i am a bit of tightass.. 11 years of tasting various cafe culture but still not ready to spend much on home brew..

                              But yelta! I really dare you! Just try it once!

                              Btw, anyone care to comment on my question 11?

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