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  • Machines to and from the USA: How easy?

    Just wondering if anyone has some advice/experience on taking an Aussie purchased 240v giotto to the USA. Moving to SF for a couple of years and considering boxing it and my mazzer mini. From what I understand I will need a step up convertor to pump up the 110v over there but not sure this will work on high draw appliances like these.

    Any help would be great as I will not cope with their default drip coffee over there.

  • #2
    Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

    Originally posted by 4F495F484D4540492C0 link=1293198143/0#0 date=1293198143
    Just wondering if anyone has some advice/experience on taking an Aussie purchased 240v giotto to the USA. Moving to SF for a couple of years and considering boxing it and my mazzer mini. From what I understand I will need a step up convertor to pump up the 110v over there but not sure this will work on high draw appliances like these.

    Any help would be great as I will not cope with their default drip coffee over there.
    Do some searching...

    More problems that it first appears due to the Hz changes in the supply. US run 60Hz and not 50Hz. Thus compounds the matter some what...

    Some houses in teh US run 240 to the Laundry but the issue is teh frequency - plays havoc with teh heater and control board etc...

    Offload here and get a Upgrade. Remember on returning you will face teh same problem and not ideal to bring US item back to Australia.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

      You can easily get a step up transformer to cope with the load, but it will not be cheap as you are talking high wattage. Frequency MAY not be an issue for the machine as controllers are often DC, but the grinder motor will not run right. All in all it will be cheaper, easier and safer to change to a110v/60hz setup

      The good news is that San Francisco is not a complete coffee wasteland. Its many years since I lived in the bay area, but even in the early nineties, good coffee could be had. You will certainly be able to replace your machine over there and resell when you leave, as well as find good cafes.

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      • #4
        Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

        Thanks for the advice - so do you think it is feasible to take the Giotto and mazzer mini to the US and then get someone local swap out the power systems. I would be a bit nervous about letting someone unknown loose on my kit with a screwdriver without a recommendation. If anyone has some suggestions on good coffee gear maintenance providers in the SF area that would be great.

        I agree that SF is not a complete wasteland - I have found some great skills and coffee blends at Blue Bottle, Ritual and Four Barrel so all is not lost. Local supply of great roasters makes the move a lot easier to take.

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        • #5
          Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

          Originally posted by 21273126232B2E27420 link=1293198143/3#3 date=1293247419
          so do you think it is feasible to take the Giotto and mazzer mini to the US and then get someone local swap out the power systems.
          NO... NOT that SIMPLE...

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          • #6
            Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

            Originally posted by 57514750555D5851340 link=1293198143/3#3 date=1293247419
            Thanks for the advice - so do you think it is feasible to take the Giotto and mazzer mini to the US and then get someone local swap out the power systems. I would be a bit nervous about letting someone unknown loose on my kit with a screwdriver without a recommendation. If anyone has some suggestions on good coffee gear maintenance providers in the SF area that would be great.
            Originally posted by 1025282F1B072B22222121440 link=1287272930/2#2 date=1287274159
            All you will need to do with a 110V US machine is change all of the solenoids, the wiring loom, the power cord, the control board and all of the microswitches with 230V Australian components.
            Hi Cam,

            Sadly, the same applies if you go the other way. Cost would be at least $1k in bits and then add labour...

            Sorry to spoil your party

            Chris

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

              Some more discussion in this recent thread http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1288584838

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              • #8
                Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                Hi cam-syd,

                You might want to get in touch with Christopher Cara at:

                Thomas E. Cara Ltd.
                517 Pacific Avenue
                (between Jerome Aly & Montgomery St)
                San Francisco, CA 94133
                (Neighborhood: Financial District)
                (415) 781-0383

                Christopher and his crew run Friscos pre-eminent espresso machine retail, service and repair emporium and I am sure they would be able to help you out with an affordable conversion... or new equipment if that is the way you choose to go.

                Enjoy the bay area and have fun.

                Cheers,


                Bruce

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                  Originally posted by 4D7275726F7A68687E1B0 link=1293198143/7#7 date=1293279559
                  help you out with an affordable conversion... or new equipment
                  Take the car too and convert it to LHD?  :-?

                  Regardless of the opinion of the inexperienced and unqualified, there is no such thing as an affordable conversion, unless youre prepared to spend pretty much the Oz 2nd hand value on the work. This of course is after you have paid to have it shipped it to SF. It would need to be done properly or not at all. As stated previously, its simply not worth it as pretty much every component which sees electricity needs to be replaced with 110V versions. You then sell in the US or reverse it all with additional labour costs when you return.

                  I regret to inform that there is no pot of gold to be found at the end of the rainbow either. :

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                    here here Chris

                    If you were moving to the US permamently (ie only a one way trip) it may be a different story but in your case going both ways...

                    Affordable....? It depends on the individual and has been well covered by Chriss post immediately above. I would suggest doing this is nothing short of throwing good money after bad and it will never be recouped. A coffee machine is a tool to make coffee with (not an emotional crutch). Sell it here (or leave it stored or with someone until you get back) and get another over there which you can off load when you move back. I would consider  a good used machine and grinder which may be able to be re sold later for little loss in real terms.

                    One of the best coffees I had recently was made with an AeroPress and next time I travel there will be one in the luggage. Good coffee does not exclusively mean one that has been made with a pump driven espresso machine & has textured milk (or froth) on top.  As an individual I could easily make do with an A/Press long term as I dont have to have milk, and then going out for an occasional "latte" can be a good thing.

                    Some of us grew up with a Moka stovetop pot and milk heated carefully in a pot on the stove. And if you dont do black coffee, milk coffee made that way is THE, REAL caffe latte. When made properly it tastes great....it just doesnt have textured milk foam on top.

                    Just another opinion for consideration here.

                    Rgdz,
                    A.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                      Originally posted by 596D7A6C77405C7079797A7A1F0 link=1293198143/9#9 date=1293316312
                      milk heated carefully in a pot on the stove. And if you dont do black coffee, milk coffee made that way is THE, REAL caffe latte. When made properly it tastes great....it just doesnt have textured milk foam on top.
                      This is my preference for milk to be used with a Latte.... Much, much sweeter in my opinion and really does add to the experience, not subtract from it

                      Mal.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                        Originally posted by 0C393433071B373E3E3D3D580 link=1293198143/8#8 date=1293308816
                        Regardless of the opinion of the inexperienced and unqualified, there is no such thing as an affordable conversion
                        Well, as a Canadian who has lived in Canada, the US, Austria, Egypt, Poland, France, South Korea and here in Australia... and who has always had some treasured piece of electric/electronic equipment converted to the local power source (110v/60Hz; 240v/50Hz and pretty much everywhere in between) and managed to do so affordably and safely I can say from an experienced point of view that it CAN be done. I know that when one moves to a new home in a far away place that it is nice to be able to take a favoured toy along for the ride... a bit of home comfort as it were. If it is that important to you then get it done and bring it with you. Chris seems to have missed the fact that I also mentioned that you can also buy shiny new equipment from Thomas E Cara if that is the way YOU choose to go... your choice... not mine... not Chris... just yours.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                          Looking at the price of machines over there and the current exchange rate.........

                          Why on earth would you take a machine with you??

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                          • #14
                            Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                            Just my 2c worth,

                            Have you thought of the cost of excess baggage, the average is well over $70.00 / kg.

                            How much does your machine and grinder weigh? :-?
                            Most airlines will only allow you 23kg max
                            Weigh up the baggage costs Vs machine purchase price!

                            Warren.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Machines to a from the USA: How easy?

                              Originally posted by 033C3B3C2134262630550 link=1293198143/11#11 date=1293349083
                              I can say from an experienced point of view that it CAN be done.
                              Excellent CW,

                              I am calling another eggspurt alert. Must be raining out there. :

                              Perhaps you might enlighten us all on your longevity, level of expertise and experience as a Rocket espresso machine service tech and those in the coffee industry in general?  Id assume years/decades, just like Attilio... :-?

                              Take the time to read the earlier posts: nobody is saying it cant be done, just that it would be stupid and uneconomical to do it, especially when the OP is only planning on being there for two years.

                              Cam, my advice is buy new or 2nd hand (as you prefer) in the US and then sell the gear when you leave. It will save you a whole heap of time and cash.

                              Sheesh...

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