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  • Vibiemme Domobar Super - Resto thread

    Ok so I found myself another project!

    It was used in an office setup so it looks like care was at an extreme minimum. I have had minimal contact with the previous owner but I knew it was going to be a hassle. When I pulled it out of the box I realized why I got it so cheap, the first thing I noticed was the frame was bent and it couldn't sit on a bench without wobbling. When I picked it up I used it for a good week or two just to make sure all functions were working and they were so I was happy to pull it apart and give it a clean.

    Steps that will need to be taken:

    -Descale all parts,
    -Thoroughly clean e61 group head and all internals,
    -Panel beat the frame to be straight,
    -Sandblast and powder coat the frame black,
    -Reinforce the frame with some solid steel so it doesn't bend again,
    -Repolish all the stainless steel to be brand new again,
    -Re-chrome the group head, group handles and steam wands,
    -Make some beautiful coffee

    This is project number 2 for me and I haven't worked with an e61 machine yet so I can't wait to work with it and see how it works.

    I've got a few photo's starting with when I first got it onto my bench and sat it down next to my previous project.


    So here it all goes again, this is keeping me busy

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  • #2
    So as you can see there is quite a fair bit of scale through out the machine so this is basically just going to be a nice solid clean up, and I'll be making it brand new again.

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    • #3
      Lol you're pulled it apart already. GL with the resto

      FYI those parts with the seals unscrew... took me a while to work that out

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      • #4
        Yep! Took me no time at all. I've got the bug of doing resto's now. All the stuff is sitting in boiling descale, I just checked it after an hour and it's starting to look pink but it hasn't lifted the hard scale yet. I'll leave it over night and make sure everything gets done properly.

        Are you talking about the group head seals?

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        • #5
          No, the group internal seals are attached to the moving 'pistons' or 'rods', they unscrew.

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          • #6
            Ohh ok thanks for the tip!

            I ended up pulling the parts out of the citric acid last night because it cleaned up over an hour or 2. I used a weak citric acid mixture because on the last resto descale just did not work with the heavy and solid scale build ups. So all the parts came out pretty nice, today I'm going to do the e61 group internals. I'm trying to figure out a way to fill up the group head cylinder without submerging the whole thing in the citric acid because I don't know what effect it will have on the chrome. I had a thought that I will seal the group head and fill the cylinder up with solution rather than submerging it so I can somehow save the chrome.

            With the frame I'm fairly annoyed that it has bent so badly. I'll have to reinforce the frame with a couple solid strips of 5 - 8mm steel underneath. It is a fairly flimsy frame compared to the Bezzera, they are only using 1 or 2mm stainless so under extreme heat any knocks to the machine would generally test the integrity of the frame, so over time I'd like to see if any other similar stories pop up with bent frames.

            Also spewin, 2 of the lights cracked because the plastic was brittle from heat so they'll need replacing.

            So far I am aiming to get the entire resto under $200, the only blow out will be the polishing and chroming. Part's shouldn't cost more than $50 in seals.

            I'll get some photo's of the stuff after the citric bath last night.

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            • #7
              It's fairly dramatic to pull it completely apart, how do you keep track of what pipe goes where, what wire goes where etc.?

              In terms of frame strength yes the Bezzera is strong... it also weighs tons in relation to most home machines.

              Tbh I wouldn't have considered the Domi an office machine, I took my 1st E61 to an overnight work effort (pulled a good 40+ doubles.. everyone was high as a kite...) and on two occasions I came back to find it in a complete mess and people trying to pick it up whilst still roasting hot to clean the mess, a lever machine wouldn't last well imo but the BZ.. complete confidence.

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              • #8
                Yeah I agree, I purchased it fairly cheap and I can justify doing this work. Also it was on my bucket list to do something like this with an e61 unit. All I really wanted to do was just re-polish the stainless steel because it was scratched but once I opened up the e61 group and saw all the scale there was no way I was going to be drinking out of it without pulling it right down.

                I take photo's of absolutely every pipe coming, every wire unplugged, I also take detailed shots from every angle, zoomed in, zoomed out. So I basically have a photographic diagram on the steps I need to take to put it back together.

                I definitely agree, it's not an office or workplace machine at all. It's too good looking to be so un-cared for by careless employees. It can definitely handle the work load but the care just isn't there so I do agree a machine like the Bezzera BZ35 or any semi commercial machines are better for workplaces.

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                • #9
                  Remember how I said I didn't know the service history of the machine? Well I'm going to take a wild stab in the dark and say NEVER! Grr how can people not take care of beautiful machines like this?!

                  This is a photo of the grouphead and shower screen. I had a hard time getting it off and wondered why, well the reason was it was never changed and had virtually fused to the shower screen and the shower screen had fused to the water distributor! As you can see I had to use force to get it out.

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                  • #10
                    That Machine needs some love!

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                    • #11
                      So I purchased an entire set of e61 seal's and springs to do a full service on the group head. I won't be getting it re-chromed because the Electroplater told me that it wouldn't justify the cost of doing it because it's in good enough condition which I also agreed with. I'm now waiting around a week to pick up the rest of the bits so hopefully by mid - late next week I should have this back together! I'm absolutely spewing because I refuse to buy coffee's anywhere else because of the sheer disappointment so I'm trying so hard to hold off. Also getting the casing sprayed high gloss black tomorrow and then getting the frame sand blasted and powdercoated by Friday.

                      So here's a pic of the grouphead with the new seals ready to go back together.

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                      • #12
                        Good luck with your reno, keep us posted...so it's going to be your home machine, not for resale? It would be interesting to know how much you paid initially and how much $ it will actually cost in the end- and where you source your renos. But I guess you'd have to kill us if you told us, lol.

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                        • #13
                          I managed to purchase it for under $1000 and by the end of the resto I have estimated it to cost $250ish. So overall I'm quite happy with the pricing the end result. I haven't done this to make money or anything like that my aim is to find the machine I like and keep it. For me it was between this machine or an ECM Technika, Rocket Evoluzione or a Bezzera Domus Galatea. I love rebuilding coffee machines, so basically I'll hold onto this for a few months and try it out. I'll scourer all the online advertisements and look for another one on that list, I'll just purchase it for cheap if it's been heavily used or needs some love. Then I'll sit them side by side until I find the machine I'm happy with and keep it

                          I'm basically doing this for the fun of it, I also want to eventually purchase a vintage machine and do a rebuild so whatever experience I can pickup along the way I'm happy to do that.

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                          • #14
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                            • #15
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                              Yeah so these were just a few photo's of what I was welcomed with upon opening the case

                              It's nothing too outrageous it just shows that you really do need to take care of your machines on a regular basis otherwise this is the end result. Regular descaling and servicing is a must every 6 months or so. Also this machine was from QLD so maybe the climate and humidity played a big part in speeding up the large amounts corrosion and scale.

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