Currently running a PIDd Silvia with Niche zero grinder, looking for upgrade recommendations. Like the look of a lever machine but never used one, also like the look of an E61 e.g. Bianca. Tend to drink cortados myself, americanos for a regular visitor and lattes for my wife. Usually 3 drinks are being made at a time. What should I be looking at?
I’ve come across from “the other forum”, it’s taken me quite a while as I’ve been attempting to avoid the temptations of “upgraditis” but circumstances are pushing me to think again.
My current setup is a (2nd hand) Silvia. I can’t remember when I bought it but it was probably 2010! My Silvia was PIDd by myself in 2016 using a MeCoffee kit, the boiler is insulated with an IMS shower screen and I use VST baskets, a Reg Barber tamper and usually a niche zero grinder, but occasionally my old mahlkonig vario. I have a dedicated (32A) supply available for a coffee machine and a reasonable amount of space but the closer I can keep to the silvia footprint the better for my relationship! I drink cortados, my wife drinks lattes and a friend who is regularly over drinks americanos. More often than not I’m making 3 drinks which is more cumbersome than I’d like on the silvia. I’ve just about managed to train my wife to use the silvia and we can both get decent cups out of it. We tend to err towards lighter roasts mainly.
I’ve been looking around at machines, I like the minima but it seems that for more than 2 drinks the boiler is a little lacking. I used to lust after a vesuvius but I’m no longer convinced I need the complexity. Current front runner in my mind is a Bianca, but I have not fully researched this.
I am very interested in lever machines but have never used one and, much as I love the look of the londinium, I am not convinced I can bring myself to spend that much on one without an extended trial. One thing I wondered is whether there is a “cheap” lever machine I could purchase and try (with the aim of reselling) to see if that world is for me, or is it the case that there is a vast gulf and therefore it’s not even worth considering trying a cheaper one?
I am quite content with a 2nd hand machine, I’m an electronic and software engineer by background and am mechanically capable but I am also relatively time poor so I’m happy with something requiring “fettling” but not something needing a complete rebuild. I am on the Isle of Wight which makes testing machines and shipping a little bit of an issue.
I am probably looking to buy a machine before the end of the year, I’m not in a particular hurry. Money is not a massive object (within reason) but the cost/performance trade off is definitely a consideration for me and the Bianca seems to be at that point from initial research.
Not sure what other information is pertinent? Apologies for this being a bit of a ramble!