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  1. Yesterday I said goodbye to my Londinium R. Sad day? Possibly, possibly not, but if you're thinking of buying one or already have one, it may (may!) be a semi-interesting read. Here I intend to give an honest, non-biased review from MY perspective as a high-end home user. Short Version If you stumbled upon this thread and either haven't got the time, can't be bothered or aren't really interested, the short version is this: The Londinium R is an EXCELLENT lever machine, undoubtedly the best you can get, however, I didn't find it to be the easiest machine to use or live with, it has its quirks and although will certainly produce excellent espresso, relies on a great deal of care, consistency and patience from the user (and a good grinder!) to get the excellent shots the Londinium is famed for! Why did I buy a Londinium R? For a bit of background, and why I chose the Londinium (Lever) please see this thread. I want to try and avoid repeating what I've already posted! https://coffeeforums.co.uk/showthread.php?37447-The-Facts-from-the-Fiction-(Types-of-Espresso-Machine)&p=488193#post488193 Initial Impressions When I first opened the box back in May last year and built the thing, I was very impressed at what is a beautifully elegant machine. I fired it up, and spent the evening pulling some TERRIBLE shots. What could go wrong probably did! Anyway, it took a bit of experimentation, and some huge technique changes (for the better of course) to realise that on the LR, especially with VST baskets, the grind, distribution and tamp weight is crucial to getting a good shot. Once I'd spent a few days experimenting, and once I'd 'got it', the shots then got better, until they were very nice indeed. At this point (having owned the LR a week or so) I was hugely impressed with the output and very much enjoyed using it. This was not the time to write an impartial review! I Stuck with it, gave it a few more months, used it, drank coffee, thought about it and enjoyed it. Once the 'new gadget [rose tinted] owners goggles' had gone I decided to put 'pen to paper' with my thoughts on it! Here goes... What did I like about it? Taste of the espresso (10/10) -When the shots came out well, the flavour and taste of the espresso was stunning. Much better than anything you will get from most commercial coffee shops (especially the ghastly chains). However, getting these super shots required regular use and perfect grind and distribution. Simplicity (8.5/10) -No settings (apart from the pre-infusion pressure) to worry about. I like a coffee machine to make good coffee without lots of settings and constant messing about, and the LR was pretty much there. A pressure profiling machine (like the Vesuvius) would NOT be for me! Build Quality/Reliability (10/10) -In the 9 months I owned it, it didn't give me a single reliability issue at all. Not one! Also it looks and feels like an exceptionally well built piece of equipment, and the insides are a work of art! Looks -As previously stated the LR is an elegant machine. It's fairly big (for the home) but the polished finish looks great (although mine usually had a towel over it for protection). No problems here. Not going to give this a score out of 10 as it is entirely subjective and doesn't really warrant one! What didn't I like about it? Warm up time -It takes a GOOD hour to warm up fully before good shots can be pulled. I used to test if it was fully warmed up by checking the end of the lever nearest the handle. If this was warm, generally I was good to go. Joysticks -For the steam and water, personally I prefer valves with knobs that turn rather than the joysticks. I find I have more control over the steam and hot water pressure as it leaves the machine. The ones fitted to the LR are not bad, just not MY preference. I PERSONALLY much prefer valves. Pressurestat -A PID would have been better IMHO, simply because the constant (loud) clicking of the pressurestat annoyed me. It annoyed me from the first day to the last. Further Discussion on the things I didn't like. Right, I'm very well aware there are some HUGE LR fans on here, and some have probably vented some steam from their nose and ears when reading the dislikes. However, let me explain. I'm trying to make this review as impartial as possible, and give a BALANCED view of MY EXPERIENCE of the LR and how it was FOR ME. What works or doesn't work for ME personally, might be completely different for you or the next person, but please bear in mind it is purely my thoughts and feelings about it, not anyone elses. Warm up Time As stated, and is fairly common knowledge, the LR takes a good hour or so to warm up fully, dependent on ambient conditions. I was not prepared to turn it on every morning on the 'off chance' that I may feel like a coffee at some point, and certainly wasn't prepared to leave it on overnight on the 'off chance' I got called to work. I also wasn't keen on leaving it on when I wasn't in the house, although on the occasions I did it was absolutely fine. This said, once it had been turned on it stayed on until the end of the day, as there is no sense in turning it on and off. This meant for me quite often I didn't have time to wait for it to warm up (as I work on call, and get 1 hour to get to work from getting said call) and secondly a lot of times when I wanted to use it (mainly for friends who turn up unannounced or at very short notice), it would be turned off and waiting 1 hour for it to warm up simply wasn't convenient. In both of these situations I resorted to a V60 pour over and the LR didn't get used. As time went on, especially after the novelty had worn off, turning the LR on and warming it up to then make 1 or 2 espressos, seemed a bit pointless. Again, unless I had a reason to make more than 1 or 2 drinks, I'd resort to using the V60. I am someone who REALLY enjoys a good espresso, but certainly don't chain drink coffee all day like some. I like to go for quality over quantity! So the last month, the machine was turned on maybe 3 or 4 times, and MAYBE in that time was used to make 12 espressos (around 250g of coffee or 1 bag, allowing for dialling it in). I'd thought a lot about it, and although I loved the machine, with this amount of use it wasn't getting it was just wasted with me, so after much deliberation I came to the conclusion that it would be much better going to a home where it got the use it deserved. Joysticks Personal preference. When I was looking at getting a high end espresso machine, people raved about the joysticks (as opposed to turn-valves). Personally they're not for me. I would choose turn valves over joysticks every time as I feel I get more control over what I'm doing, and can more easily have them half open rather than all-or-nothing. This, however, was not the primary reason for selling the LR, as they can be changed, and if this was the ONLY dislike, I would have installed turn valves for sure. Regular and Frequent Use In the 'pros' section, I mentioned that to get the best out of this machine, you need to use it regularly and frequently. I found, in the last 9 months if I used the machine every day, all that would be required as the beans and ambient conditions (temperature, humidity etc) changed would be a very small tweak to either the grind or tamp weight, which usually entailed tightening up the grind slightly as the beans aged, depending on the beans, and tamping slightly harder. This meant that most shots were very good and even the first one of the day was perfectly drinkable if it wasn't always perfect. However, if the machine was not used every day, I would find that there would be a much bigger change in the beans and conditions, which would essentially necessitate dialling in the shot again from scratch before getting quality coffee. Using the 'last known good settings' after a week of the machine and beans being stood, didn't usually work! This meant a bit much messing about and a lot of wasted coffee. This infrequent use, as mentioned above, ultimately came down to the warm up time from cold. Conclusion If you're reading this conclusion, you've either skipped straight to it, or managed to stay awake long enough to read the whole review (if you didn't, you need more coffee!!). So to sum up, the Londinium R is a SUPERB machine, and Reiss has done an excellent job developing something quite unique to the market, that works well, is well built and produces stunning coffee. However, at the moment it is not the machine that works best for me, and I would much prefer a machine with a quicker warm up time, that would get more use than the LR got. If anyone has any questions I'll answer as best I can!!
  2. Another nice commercial lever with seemingly small overall footprint https://www.ecm.de/en/products/details/product/Product/Details/barista-l2/ I'd love to see a small single group version with the joystick steam/water valves
  3. I have an L1 here which was bought new on 2nd October 2015. It has had home use for an average of 2-3 espressos per day and I have only ever used Volvic bottled water. A new set of seals were fitted at the end of October this year. I have the original box and a brand new, unopened plumb-in kit is included in the sale. The machine is in Edinburgh and you're welcome to come and have a look. I'm happy to drive up to 100 miles to meet/deliver to buyer. I can't get some of the photos to upoad and the ones that do are being turned sideways so if you're interested please ask and I'll email photos directly, it's a lot easier. Looking for £1500.00 Edited: Please post any questions on the forum. thanks Al
  4. argh. I was all set to buy a sage dual boiler from amazon. now this forum has offered up too much information and i cant decide what to do. lever, dual boiler, hx... where do I start? please help
  5. Woohoo!!! I just got me a Pavoni on ebay! - http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/332307790618 My first lever and first espresso machine! Complete noob to espresso really, but I had to give it a try and I love the engineering simplicity and heritage of the Pavoni levers. And the fact that they can make fantastic espresso in the right hands... hopefully mine too eventually! Think this is an 80s machine, no idea what shape it's going to be in so it was a bit of a punt really, but will be happy to strip it down and rebuild as a project if needed. There have been some great threads here lately from @christos_geo and @owain which inspired me to go for the Europiccola so thanks to you guys I'm sure the great info there will come in handy. Will be just as happy if I can start pulling that lever and making espressos as soon as I get it home, but the engineer in me really wants to get it in pieces anyway! Hopefully picking up in a couple of days... excited!
  6. Almost choked the europiccola this morning ... I assume had I not been a beef cake my only option would be turn off and wait till it cools down to unlock the PF ? which makes me think ... Do any of the other lever machines like the l1 have anything to avoid this ... Or do you still have to suffer the odd sneeze if you are hurrying or the embarrassment of waiting 10mins before you dare unlock a choked PF with 9bar of hot water behind it
  7. Snakehips

    Londinium R

    Having been fortunate enough to upgrade to a factory built L-R with digital pre-infusion, my early model L-R is now up for sale. It will be 2 years old in March 2019. In common with a lot of the early machines, the problematic Ceme secondary pressure switch was replaced with a Mater switch at 6 Months. The mater has been faultless. The machine is in first class condition. There is not even a scratch on the drip tray grill. The only blemish is on the top panel from where the edges of the water tank lid sit and, this is not normally visible. The machine has only ever been used with Waitrose Lockhills bottled water or it's equivalent. The piston and group seals have been replaced today. To Include: Bottomless portafilter Stock basket Stock shower-screen Londinium distribution tool Spare Mater secondary pressure switch. Price £1,750 - collection from Coventry or an acceptable rendezvous. No offers thank you. I do have the original packaging. Any questions then, please ask.
  8. First of all, many thanks to all who replied to my last thread on here (https://coffeeforums.co.uk/showthread.php?37373-ECM-Synchronika-Profitec-700-or-Profitec-800-Lever-Machine-Your-thoughts-please!), this was much appreciated, and particular thanks to @dfk41 and @Snakehips. I've narrowed it down to the ECM Synchronika and the Londinium R, and am likely to take the plunge on one or the other in the near future. Both the best available at that price range but 2 very different machines. Can anyone point me in the direction of any good E61/DB vs Londinium threads and even better, has anyone had a lot of experience using both. Which one did you prefer and why? I have heard that the Londinium is a 'game changer', and the quality of the coffee produced is over and above that of a pump-fed machine, but on the other hand, ECM/QM/Rocket/La Marzocco/San Remo etc seem to sell plenty of pump fed machines, and there aren't very many options for good quality lever machines, as they seem much less popular. There must be a reason for this, but I really don't know what it is, and from what i've been reading, it should be the other way round if some of the reviews of the Londinium are anything to go by, but it isn't. This is what is making me think twice about jumping in with 2 feet for a lever machine. Is anyone able to shed any light on this? I'd be really interested to heard from someone who has owned both and used both in anger, and any specific reasons for choosing one over the other. I've also heard that the Londinium can produce 'commercial quality espresso' at home. This for me is neither here nor there as I can produce better espresso than 90% of coffee shops can using my Sage Duo Temp Pro! It isn't too often I go into a coffee shop and am wowed by the quality of the coffee...One of the reasons I like to make it at home. The most recent exception was at a coffee house called https://espressonisten.de/ in Berlin. They use a Slayer, which was super but well out of my price range! Many thanks again in advance for any replies. Whichever I choose I'll be sure to post a review on here after I have used it for a while and gotten used to how it works. Either way, both will produce an espresso of a much higher quality than im used to with the Sage. Cheers. GP
  9. Hi there, I am new to this hobby/field and have very limited experience with drinking espresso neat, so my pallet isn't very refined so I was wondering if anyone would be so kind to help me find a bean to use as my "go-to". I was surprised on how sensitive each bean is to grind settings (this may be due to the type of machine I have though) so I am now wanting to settle on one bean to use for the next few months. Ideally I would go to a large roaster or quality coffee shop to taste a varriety but for now I am unable to do so. First of all here is the equipment I am using: Espresso Machine: Elektra Micro Casa Leva - Just about got the hang of it and I use the double basket with 15-18g of coffee (depending on the bean) and I am able to get half decent results (I think) Grinder: Mazzer Robur-E - this grinder is really good, I would hate to think how much coffee I'd have wasted without having the electronic dosser! - Unfortunatly I am going to be replacing this with a Mazzer mini in a couple of weeks as the size of the Robur is just not practical (for me) So far I have tried only 3 blends from one vendor (other than a bag of illy beans to help me dial in the grinder and practice pulling some shots) - The roaster is http://www.coffeecompass.co.uk - my experience with them as a vendor has been great, the coffee arrived next day and answered my questions about the three blends I chose. The Blends (disclaimer this is not a review and I'm sure any negatives are down to me not pulling it right): - Mediterranean Mocha Espresso - We really failed to get a shot from this we liked.... I tryed adjusting almost every possible variable and it was always too bitter and both me and the other half didn't like this even in latte' drinks! it was just far too dark/bold/intense for us, - Hill and Valley Espresso Blend - Again we found this too intense at first but with some adjustment I was able to pull some nice shots from it - It made a lovely Latte' and an enjoyable espresso... but it was still too harsh/intense - Cherry Cherry - This was an instant hit... The first shot I pulled was a little too sour/acidic nut by the second one it was perfect - this was probably the best espresso I have had to date. It was creamy and sweat (like lightly burnt sugar) with such an amazing mouth feel (it was like liquid velvet) . unlike the others we found the taste enjoyable as a straight espresso and good in milk drinks too - although maybe not as good as the hilll and valley as the flavors were more subtle. However maybe a touch too high on citrus notes? It is the only one I'd buy again until I am more confident with pulling consistent shots to do the others justice. I'm sorry for my very poor non-review of the above but clearly you can see we prefer the Cherry Cherry blend - It was also the only light roast of the three, is what I described above in keeping with light vs dark roasts? If I was to see the flavor notes of the beans before this week I would have said dark bitter coffee would have been our choice but obviously I prefer sweeter blends! If any one could recommend us a couple of beans to try or maybe you have a favorite light roast (or not) sweet coffee you could point us in the direction of? Many thanks, Chris
  10. This is just a quick note to announce that we are really proud to be working with Reiss, selling Londinium espresso machines in the UK. Many of you will know that we've been huge fans of Londinium machines for ages, we have an L2 in the roastery and it's become a really important tool for us. It gets used for pop up events and soon it will be taking pride of place in our new cafe (which should be open sometime in the next three months with a bit of luck). Londinium will still be selling their machines directly and we will be focussed mainly on the commercial machines, installing them in cafes etc. We will be selling the L1 and L1-P too though. We have agreed with Reiss that we will only sell his machines at retail prices and I really respect his position on that, as an independent business in such a difficult operating environment, I think he's right to offer his machines using a fair and transparent pricing structure and without the usual shenanigans associated with the espresso machine business. It's all very new but we're really excited about this development. It seems like an arrangement that will really help us both push forward. We're hoping to have demo units installed and ready for action in the next month or so - anyone in the north of England wanting to come and have a play, please get in touch!
  11. Hi all, So it's taken me all of a few days being a member on this forum to decide that I want a la pavoni. I just don't want to repeat the mistake I made when buying my gaggia classic and buying a model that I now regret a bit(should've gone pre 2015) So can anyone tell me the differences between the pre-millenium models and post? Which model is the one to go for? I generally make a 1 flat white a day during the week and 2 on weekends. It will be very rare that I need to make more than 2 cups back to back, but planning on keeping the gaggia for when guests come around. Also prices seem to have quite a big variance, I'm assuming this is due to some models being more desirable than others. Im looking for a used machine. Your comments and suggestions are appreciated
  12. cambosheff

    Londinium R

    After having to replace my car I'm looking to replenish the coffers, so the LR is for sale. In excellent order (only marks are drip tray normal ones) and has some warranty remaining (end of May if I recall). New seals just fitted (silicone, not rubber). Boxed with 1 Bottomless Portafilter, 1 tube of Loxeal and an 18g (I think) basket. £1,995 (also listed elsewhere).
  13. Hi everyone, I'm in the beginning stages of planning a mobile coffee cart. I've been recommended to purchase a gas fired lever machine as they are least dependent on electricity which would be a headache I'd like to avoid with (big batteries/generators etc.) . So far I've highlighted the Pontevecchio Lusso as a potential machine. Would anyone be willing to give me their opinion on it? Or else recommend another group two option. Ultimately I'd like to keep the budget to below £1,500. I've also targeted the Mythos 1 grinder as my grinder to pair it with. Thanks for reading!
  14. Hi all I am in the early stages of choosing a new machine to upgrade from a gaggia classic. obviously a road well trodden by forum members. my eye has been caught by the look of the lever machines. I have a budget for the machine of up to £1000 (grinder will be dealt with separately) I have seen the La Pavoni professional and the Elektra Micro Casa. All thoughts suggestions or warnings appreciated. thanks
  15. I'm begrudgingly looking to sell my La Pavoni Europiccola as I don't get the chance to really use it anymore so it's sat going to waste. This is the 80's 2 button version with the high-low switch as well as the red power switch. It has the 3 holed steam wand arm as opposed to the one holed. There is a little rust under the plastic tray (which I will take a photo of) and the water level on the side works sporadically so I never really use it and just look inside. I'm looking for around the £180-200 mark as it is a great little machine. I'm based in the Sheffield area, just off the motorway, so I can travel a little way to drop off or I'm easy to get to. I can arrange delivery at a cost but I'm always nervous items will get damaged. I'll include the tamper I use for it too as I know the 49mm is not a normal size. I'm open to a sensible trade for something of a Gaggia Classic or better machine as this is what I'd be looking to buy anyway.
  16. My Gaggia Classic is at the end of its useful life. All its problems are caused by hard water- or my inability to combat it. So: Do machines with brass boilers fair better with hard water? Would I get less problems with a lever machine?
  17. Hi, I think that, after chatting with Coffeechap, that I'm either after a decent La Pav Pro or a cheap fixer-upper Europiccola. Anyone got anything knocking about?
  18. I have recently bought a rancilio z series lever machine. It has been sitting since 1993 from what I can gather. Any other owners out there to swap notes with? Some of the seals and o rings have perished and I am working my way through the leaks. The tank fills if I open the tap, but won't kick in automatically ( I have tried in both the '1' and '2' positions of the switch) it it comes without the drip tray, which is a pain, so I am looking for something that might fit thanks in advance andy
  19. Tis the season to pimp red vintage levers, welcome to the world of the svelte looking Bruni Brunella A quick read on these is available here on Fransesco's great site, http://www.francescoceccarelli.eu/m_bruni_eng.htm Based on the info this is a third generation and in theory has a thermostat and is somewhere between 1965 and 1973 as it only came yesterday I haven't had a chance to open it up yet but first look shows it to be an open boiler type with the piston sitting directly in the middle of the water heater. Its missing the power light and the drip tray and looks like it will need a tool making to get it apart, but wheres the fun in an easy life.
  20. As a new member, I wanted to show some of my coffee experiences here starting with a visit to the factory of Bosco Attilio macchine per caffè. I have been living in Naples for over 4 years now, and am really into espresso as a result. As a final memorabillia piece I purchased a Bosco Sorrento after saving for years and picked it up directly since I live 20-25 minutes from their factory. I ordered it with orange panelling and wooden handles. I saved about 1000-1500 euro in distribution and shipping fees since there were none I went through! When I picked my machine up I was surprised at how small the workshop was, though I knew prior Bosco makes only around 60 machines per year. I estimate the entire space to be no more than 1000sq ft. They had multiple machines being produced though, and I could see how they started with the frame and kept adding more components. There was a testing station in the back along with some welders. Outside the workshop on Corso Vittorio Emmanuale Inside the front entrance Right side of the workshop with testing room in the back Left side of the workshop with storage and primary machining tools I conversed with Roberta Bosco for almost 6 months during the ordering process, and was extremely cordial. There were a few requests I made that were all fulfilled, the biggest being having the boiler signed by the worker Giorgio and Attilio himself. While some people believe a Londinum is superior, I am a sucker for classical lever machine design.
  21. Hi all. Having been given a La Pavoni Europiccola I was told to check out this forum as a good place to get advice and tips on how to get the best out of what is proving to be a lovely little coffee machine.
  22. With the release of a new thoroughbred out of the Londinium stable almost upon us , how many people on the forum are interested in getting there hands on one ? Has any one placed an order ? And how many L1 owners are feeling a bit twitchy and contemplating the plunge ? It will also be nice to see what people think if they done an upgrade or are buying a Londinium for the first time. i might be wrong but I think they are shipping tomorrow .
  23. everything considered. budget up to about 1200 or so.
  24. I'm thinking about a new machine, and am considering the L1 or Veloce. My problem is I'm not sure if I have the counter space for either of them. The only place I can put the machine has cupboards above at a height of 63cm. I think this means the handle would be in front of the cupboard, and would need to be moved every time we needed to get in there. Can the handle rest in the down position? If so, what would be the total depth? The counter is 60cm deep. I don't want it to stick out past the counter edge as we'll be constantly walking into it. Hopefully someone can come up with a way one of them can fit, otherwise I'm back to the drawing board! TIA Mark
  25. As I'm travelling between two places now with work I want to get a second machine. I like my Europiccola so I could just pick up another second hand one but I came across the Mini Gaggia (like the photo below) but I couldn't find a lot of info on it. Has anyone on here ever owned one and if so how does it compare to a Pavoni? I gather it's a Spring lever instead of manual.
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