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Topic: Almost decided on what Espresso Machine & Grinder to buy (7 msgs / 200 lines)
1) From: Vince Petrell
Thanks to everyone who helped me with my decision on an espresso machine an=
d grinder. I have since read a *lot* on grinders and espresso machines, and=
 am a little confused in many areas, but I have learned a lot.
I would have liked to have purchased a Sylvia and Rocky, but my budget does=
n't allow for it (meaning my wife is not convinced about my new hobby). So =
I will have to take baby steps and will probably want to upgrade in the fut=
ure.
But I found a refurbished Solis Maestro Plus for $109, and some Gaggios for=
 under $200. I think this should work pretty well. If anyone thinks this is=
 a problem, let me know.
But, I am unsure of which Gaggia to choose. I can get a refurbished Evoluti=
on, or a new Carezza for about the same price. Does anyone know if one is m=
uch better than the other?
This list has been great! I look forward to contributing more once I get th=
e hang of all of this new information.
Vince

2) From: miKe mcKoffee
The problem with the Solis grinders is if you plan on using it for espresso
the burrs will highly likely be shot is 6 months or less. They use a plastic
burr carrier which always too much play. Not an issue for grinding vac,
press or drip but finer grinding for espresso (or perish the thought
Turkish) the burrs touch now and then quickly dulling. And the even worse
part is the bottom burr is not considered user replaceable. Solis Maestro
was my 3rd grinder in a year & a half, then I finally bit the bullet and got
a Rocky.
I understand the problem of justifying cost. Yet it's highly likely in less
than a year you'll be discarding the Solis and buying a Rocky or better so
your good deal of $109 will not really be so good, just wasted $ IMO and my
experience. I'm not trying to be snooty or anything just hoping you don't
make the same mistake(s) I did. The money I spent on the 3 electric grinders
BEFORE buying a Rocky would have paid for Rocky! So in effect I paid well
over $500 to get Rocky... (Capresso, Solis Mulino, Solis Maestro)
I firmly believe you'd be better off getting a Zass until you can afford a
good electric grinder for espresso. The Zass is up to the task, albeit
manually grinding. But in reality it's not that slow or hard to use.
An espresso machine without a 3-way valve does not mean it can't pull great
shots so not a compromise in the cup. Just have to be careful not to remove
the PF too soon or watch out!
Kona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffee
URL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer etc.http://mdmint.home.comcast.net/coffee/Rosto_mod.htm

3) From: Peter Barnes
I agree with Mike's advice.  Don't go for the Solis for espresso.  I 
have one.  I tried it once for espresso, but I use Rocky.  Your 
refurbished Solis will be fine for other types of coffee, but if it's 
refurbished, that most likely means the burrs have already given out 
once, and will do so again, especially when used for espresso.  If you 
can't make the jump to an electric espresso grinder, and you aren't 
willing to scrounge around for deals like Mazzer Majors in strange 
places, I would get a Zass. 
As for the machine, I don't know anything about either one, but the 
grinder will be more important than the machine anyways. 
cheers
peter
Vince Petrell wrote:
<Snip>

4) From: DEchelbarg
I also agree with the previous advice.  I have a Solis M Plus, Zass,  and a 
Rocky.  While the Solis M plus will grind for espresso, the Rocky is much 
better in terms of shot quality.  You may also want to consider a rebuilt Solis 
SL70 for espresso.
Vince Petrell wrote:
<Snip>
grinder. I have since read a *lot* on grinders and espresso machines, and am 
a little confused in many areas, but I have learned a lot.
<Snip>
doesn't allow for it (meaning my wife is not convinced about my new hobby). So I 
will have to take baby steps and will probably want to upgrade in the future.
<Snip>
under $200. I think this should work pretty well. If anyone thinks this is a 
problem, let me know.
<Snip>
Evolution, or a new Carezza for about the same price. Does anyone know if one is much 
better than the other?
<Snip>
hang of all of this new information.
<Snip>

5) From: Dennis Parham
yes! I agree with Mike!!  Grinder is where the initial money should go! 
  for best use of$  and the ZASS is inexpensive GOLD!  and when you can 
upgrade to a ROCKY or better ..you still can use the ZASS!!!
Dennis Parham
On Sep 11, 2004, at 2:09 AM, miKe mcKoffee wrote:
<Snip>

6) From: AlChemist John
Sometime around 08:55 PM 9/10/2004, Vince Petrell typed:
<Snip>
PLEASE take the list advise and don't go for the Solis.  You will get what 
you pay for and have to replace it too soon.  Go for a Zass.  I use one day 
in and day out.  MM and I did a head to head at the PNWGII, his Rocky and 
my Zass.  For a single pull, the Zass was actually faster due to cleaning 
out the chute and all on the Rocky.
<Snip>
I really like the 3 way valve, but it is not necessary.  The internals are 
all the same.  Do check out how old the refurbished ones are and what kind 
of frame it has.  The frames are now SS on some, so do not rust, but used 
to be another rust prone metal.  I really like my Classic/Zass combination.
<Snip>
--
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.dreamsandbones.net/blog/http://www.chocolatealchemy.com/

7) From: Lesley Albjerg
Vince,
I had a couple of emails bounce back, but couldn't tell if it was the one I sent you off list.  I have a super deal on a high quality used Mazzer Super Jolly that will last you the rest of your life.  Contact me off list.
 
Les
AlChemist John  wrote:
Sometime around 08:55 PM 9/10/2004, Vince Petrell typed:
Thanks to everyone who helped me with my decision on an espresso machine and grinder. I have since read a *lot* on grinders and espresso machines, and am a little confused in many areas, but I have learned a lot.
I would have liked to have purchased a Sylvia and Rocky, but my budget doesn't allow for it (meaning my wife is not convinced about my new hobby). So I will have to take baby steps and will probably want to upgrade in the future.
But I found a refurbished Solis Maestro Plus for $109, and some Gaggios for under $200. I think this should work pretty well. If anyone thinks this is a problem, let me know.
PLEASE take the list advise and don't go for the Solis.  You will get what you pay for and have to replace it too soon.  Go for a Zass.  I use one day in and day out.  MM and I did a head to head at the PNWGII, his Rocky and my Zass.  For a single pull, the Zass was actually faster due to cleaning out the chute and all on the Rocky.
But, I am unsure of which Gaggia to choose. I can get a refurbished Evolution, or a new Carezza for about the same price. Does anyone know if one is much better than the other?
I really like the 3 way valve, but it is not necessary.  The internals are all the same.  Do check out how old the refurbished ones are and what kind of frame it has.  The frames are now SS on some, so do not rust, but used to be another rust prone metal.  I really like my Classic/Zass combination.
This list has been great! I look forward to contributing more once I get the hang of all of this new information.
Vince--  
John Nanci 
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.dreamsandbones.net/blog/http://www.chocolatealchemy.com/


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