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Need help finding a budget setup


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Hi folks, I'm new to the forum, but have enjoyed coffee for a number of years. Somehiw I've made do with an ALDI espresso machine and Krups grinder for about 5 years!

 

The machine now can't hold a temperature within 15 deg of 90! The issue is I have 2 kids and a wife, so there's not much cash to spare for this stuff. I've got a bit saved up and a birthday coming up in April.

 

I hope to have about 400 to spend and that's going to have to cover both grinder and machine. So I'm pretty certain I'm going second hand (iim fine with that). I'm also pretty handy, so I'm happy to modify gear (are there any projects out there for a DIY PID kit?). I'm the only one in the house who drinks coffee, but I often also steam milk to make hot chocolate.

 

So, I've been doing a bit of reading and seen a lot of mentions about hand grinders. I'd not really considered these before, but I've seen a few posts that recommend them, so I'm not ruling them out.

 

So please help me out. Any links to references I should read/watch would be appreciated.

 

 

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For £400 you’ll get a gaggia classic and a eureka mignon secondhand, it’s a great starter setup and there’s loads of people on the forum who can help you with parts/problems/upgrades. Well looked after or reconditioned Classics come up on here fairly often. My advise is get some saved searches on eBay and keep your eye on machines and grinders that are local to you, if they are not shipping prices are normally better.
Hand grinders are definitely an option, they too come up secondhand once people upgrade.

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I got a Gaggia Baby off eBay from 2009 and it’s a great machine. I needed to buy parts to fix it up but all in cost under £100 and it’s practically the same as the classic. The Eureka Crono at £170 looks and sounds an awesome buy at the price and probably not that too much worse than the Eureka specialita that is twice the price. 
 

In time if budget allows you can pimp a Gaggia by adding a PID, Rancilio steam wand and IMS baskets and screens. 

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Thanks for the tips so far. I'll definitely start saving a few searches on ebay. The Gaggia prices seem to have gone crazy recently, but I'm sure the odd bargain will appear.

Also happy to wait it out for good quality items that may turn up in the for sale section of this forum.

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Classic and mignon is spot on budget well should be may have to add a pid later 

 

if you can find one a Silvia generally better for steaming milk 

 DIY pid is an option but a kit is £95 from mr shades can be done for £50 with separate controller and probe but still needs wiring and relays 

 

Edited by HDAV
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If you're sold on a gaggia you could post a wanted thread, there's already a few on there but also apparently a few coming up for sale soon. Competition seems tough atm.

11 hours ago, Jordash184 said:

...The Gaggia prices seem to have gone crazy recently...

I think the pandemic has turned lots of people on to the hobby and prices are generally high atm.

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