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Topic: Maintenance: Pasquini Livia vs. Andreja Premium vs. ??? (9 msgs / 349 lines)
1) From: Roger Lebow
Cari Cognoscenti --
Having done nothing more than lurk in these sacred precincts before 
now, I embolden myself to pose a question:
After extensive reading here and elsewhere, I've decided to invest in 
an HX machine (life's too short, etc., etc.). This is, of course, a 
topic that has been addressed hereabouts at length, and the only reason 
I roil the waters further is to inquire: How is the maintenance on 
these puppies? I refer not to the usual day-to-day, week-to-week stuff; 
but what is the frequency of significant repair?
This could really spell the difference between the Livia and the 
Andreja for me. I live in (pardon the expression) Los Angeles, and 
Pasquini has their shop in downtown LA. I have a friend and advisor who 
has had great experience with his Livia 90 (and the previous Livia 
machine he had for two decades before he upgraded to the 90)--and 
particularly with the Pasquini family. Since I'm not at all 
mechanically-inclined (spirited discussions of homegrown machine 
modifications reducing me to slack-jawed drooling stupor), having a 
shop nearby that services its own product is a decided incentive.
On the other hand, if the Andreja Premium is the superior machine (and 
this is Tom & Maria's reason for no longer stocking the Livia 90), 
perhaps it's not going to require major service for a significant time. 
(I could then patronize our hosts, another incentive...)
What do you do when your shiny HX beast starts blowing swill? Pack it 
up and ship it to Milan? Try to find someone in the states? Help, 
please!
Gratefully,
Roger
Sierra Madre, California

2) From: Barbara C. Greenspon
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Hello:
I have only wonderful things to say about both machines.  I had the 
Livia for a couple of years, and have had the Andreja Premium for about 
a year (rough guesstimates).  Looking back, the biggest reason I had for 
switching was being hooked by how great it all sounded.  I had other 
reasons, too, at the time, but, whatever my reason was, I'd do it again 
right now!
I did have to have the Livia repaired several times, and my husband 
learned to fix one of the problems when needed.  The solenoid was one of 
the problems.  But I still loved it.  We found a local authorized repair 
shop, and they were terrific.
We had a bit of trouble getting the Andreja plumbed (which we did 
several months after getting it).  Chris, of Chris Coffee, which was the 
only place to get it at that time, and all of Chris' staff were 
fantastic over the phone and the problem was solved. 
I love this machine.  It is beautiful (big) elegant, and the shots are 
outstanding.  I don't steam milk much nowadays, but when I do, the 
machine does a phenomenal job.
Either way, you cannot go wrong.
Barbara
Roger Lebow wrote:
<Snip>

3) From: Sandy Andina
When my Livia sprung a leak, I called Cafe West/Baratza, the US  
distributor.  Jerry, their tech guru, walked me through the  
diagnostics, determined it was a leaky pressurestat, overnighted a  
new part to me, and then walked me through the installation, as well  
as how to backflush and remove the shower screen and grouphead. Even  
suggested which brand of water to use in the tank (Crystal Geyser).  
Has worked like a charm ever since--and the backflush and cleaning  
procedure was very easy once I did it for the first time.
On May 21, 2006, at 4:02 PM, Roger Lebow wrote:
<Snip>
Sandy
www.sandyandina.com

4) From: rnkyle
The Anderja is great HX E-61 group machine.
But unless you are a good fixer upper, allot is to be said for having a 
dealership near you. Repair work if not done at home has to be sent off and 
these machines are quite heavy and cost for shipping is expensive.
I had and Anderja and had no real complaint, except the need to flush the 
group head to get the temps correct after sitting for a while. I ended up 
getting a dual boiler machine
La Spaziale S-1. I love it but all these machines need repairs from time to 
time. When I got the S1 it had a bit of trouble with the hot water shutting 
off, I had to take the solenoid apart and remove a sliver of brass that was 
there from the machining I guess, but that fixed that problem. Now the steam 
boiler is over shooting the temperature and the relief valve pops. I usually 
can get it to stop by running a few cups of water thru the water spout.
I got a new boiler temperature probe but have not installed it yet, but I 
think that will solve that problem and not having anymore problems should 
make it good to go for quite awhile. I love the machine but it seems owning 
any espresso machine will mean repairs from time to time and its nice to be 
able to fix them yourself. If you can't or don't have a friend that can, I 
would buy a machine that I could carry over the dealer to have repaired if 
needed.
Good luck
RK

5) From: Heat + Beans --all the rest is commentary
On 5/21/06, Roger Lebow  wrote:
<Snip>
Assuming that you are thinking of SweetMaria's for the Andreja, you should
direct this question to Tom--possibly off list, althought he may want to
answer it in this thread.  After all, it's a very legitimate question
regarding a $1400 machine and it has a mostly empirical answer:  you
shouldn't have to rely on informal experiences and guesses (no matter how
well advised).
I bought my HX from a "smaller" vendor.  When the inevitable operational
questions arose, this vendor could answer most of them.  But when I actuall=
y
had to troubleshoot more serious problems, the vendor turned me over to the
distributor/importer of the machine who had a full scale repair capacity an=
d
complete stock of parts.  I don't know if this is a standard practice, if
Tom has the capacity to troubleshoot with phone support, or how he handles
the inevitable problems any machine will develop.
Over the years I've gotten excellent telephone and email support for
replacing eroded plastic parts, switches, pressurestat, and some upgrades o=
f
improved parts. I've gotten some good help from online forums, but you've
got to have a degree of sophistication to know what advice to ignore.   I'm
not much on electro-technical repairs, but I've  managed OK.  Even so, I'm
still hanging on to the original packing equipment.  I can handle a few
hundred dollars every ??  5  ?? or whatever years in case of a  major
meltdown that's beyond my abilities.
Good luck with your decision.  Incidentally, if  Tom has dumped the Livia i=
n
favor of the Andreja, I'd go with that decision---even if  Mr. Pasquini wer=
e
my brother.
-- 
Martin
Heat + Beans
    all the rest is commentary

6) From: Sandy Andina
--Apple-Mail-9-362633650
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Should mention that my Livia 90A was only $1100 shipped.  Had it been  
available only at list price, I'd probably have bought an Andreja  
Premium from Tom.
Two things to know about the Livia--it, as all pro-portafilter  
machines do, likes to be "updosed" but not as much as others--thus  
you will probably use a tad less coffee because you won't have to  
sweep off as much from the PF.  And the steam wand is very powerful,  
almost a bucking bronco, compared to other HXs.  You will need to get  
an aftermarket 2-hole tip to tame the steaming power in order to get  
microfoam.  The included plastic turbofrother and large 4-hole tip  
steam too quickly, IMHO.
I do adore its hot water tap--I use it for everything to Americanos  
to hot chocolate to miso soup to French Press to Aeropress!  And its  
flip-top tank is very easy to fill.
On May 22, 2006, at 12:21 PM, Heat + Beans --all the rest is  
commentary wrote:
<Snip>
Sandy
www.sandyandina.com
--Apple-Mail-9-362633650
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Should mention that my Livia 90A =
was only $1100 shipped.  Had it been available only at list price, I'd =
probably have bought an Andreja Premium from Tom.  
Two things to know about = the Livia--it, as all pro-portafilter machines do, likes to be "updosed" = but not as much as others--thus you will probably use a tad less coffee = because you won't have to sweep off as much from the PF.  And the = steam wand is very powerful, almost a bucking bronco, compared to other = HXs.  You will need to get an aftermarket 2-hole tip to tame the = steaming power in order to get microfoam.  The included plastic = turbofrother and large 4-hole tip steam too quickly, IMHO.
I do adore its hot water = tap--I use it for everything to Americanos to hot chocolate to miso soup = to French Press to Aeropress!  And its flip-top tank is very easy to = fill. On May 22, 2006, at 12:21 PM, Heat + Beans --all the = rest is commentary wrote:
On = 5/21/06, Roger Lebow <cellomojo> = wrote: What do you do = when your shiny HX beast starts blowing swill? Pack it up and ship it = to Milan? Try to find someone in the states? = Help, please! Assuming that you are thinking of = SweetMaria's for the Andreja, you should direct this question to = Tom--possibly off list, althought he may want to answer it in this = thread.  After all, it's a very legitimate question regarding a $1400 = machine and it has a mostly empirical answer:  you shouldn't have to = rely on informal experiences and guesses (no matter how well advised).  = I bought my HX from a "smaller" vendor.  When the inevitable = operational questions arose, this vendor could answer most of them.  = But when I actually had to troubleshoot more serious problems, the = vendor turned me over to the distributor/importer of the machine who had = a full scale repair capacity and complete stock of parts.  I don't = know if this is a standard practice, if Tom has the capacity to = troubleshoot with phone support, or how he handles the inevitable = problems any machine will develop.  Over the years I've = gotten excellent telephone and email support for replacing eroded = plastic parts, switches, pressurestat, and some upgrades of improved = parts. I've gotten some good help from online forums, but you've got to = have a degree of sophistication to know what advice to ignore.   I'm = not much on electro-technical repairs, but I've  managed OK.  Even = so, I'm still hanging on to the original packing equipment.  I can = handle a few hundred dollars every ??  5  ?? or whatever years in = case of a  major meltdown that's beyond my abilities.  = Good luck with your decision.  Incidentally, if  Tom has dumped the = Livia in favor of the Andreja, I'd go with that decision---even if  = Mr. Pasquini were my brother. -- Martin Heat + = Beans     all the rest is = commentary = = --Apple-Mail-9-362633650--

7) From: Michael Guterman
There is a lot to be said for local support.  I just had to send my 
Solis 5000 to Cafe West in Oregon, and it cost $92 to ship.  I shudder 
to think of what my Isomac would cost if I had to send it someplace. 
Michael
Sandy Andina wrote:
<Snip>

8) From: Roger Lebow
--Apple-Mail-3-546749565
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Thanks to all of you who were kind enough to respond to my emergent 
dilemma about whether to get the perhaps-not-quite-as-good HX machine 
whose shop is located in my own town (Livia 90) or the 
kick-your-father's-espresso-machine-around-the-block HX that would 
sooner or later require being shipped off at great expense to far-flung =
shores (Andreja Premium).
On the one hand (not that you're clamoring to know), advice was about 
evenly divided (it's nice to have local service vs. go with the 
demonstrably superior machine). On the other hand, at the least I can 
console myself with the knowledge that not-the-best might in the 
balance turn out to be more-than-good-enough...
Resuming Lurker-ModeŽ for the duration,
Roger
Sierra Madre, CA=
--Apple-Mail-3-546749565
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Thanks to all of you who were kind enough to respond to my emergent
dilemma about whether to get the perhaps-not-quite-as-good HX machine
whose shop is located in my own town (Livia 90) or the
kick-your-father's-espresso-machine-around-the-block HX that would
sooner or later require being shipped off at great expense to
far-flung shores (Andreja Premium).
On the one hand (not that you're clamoring to know), advice was about
evenly divided (it's nice to have local service vs. go with the
demonstrably superior machine). On the other hand, at the least I can
console myself with the knowledge that not-the-best might in the
balance turn out to be more-than-good-enough...
Resuming Lurker-ModeŽ for the duration,
Roger
Sierra Madre, CA=
--Apple-Mail-3-546749565--

9) From: Wesley Simon
What about an Expobar Brewtus II?
On 5/24/06, Roger Lebow  wrote:
<Snip>


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