My Gaggia/Mini Lever is 1973 build, had it for years and really enjoy using it.
Okay, soapbox time:
Open boiler, standard 58mm baskets, boiler temp = temp at puck, great thermal stability thanks to a great lump of brass called the boiler…. User adjustable thermostat…it’s the ugly duckling of levers IMHO.
Although they get no love, they actually make a tasty coffee in standard form when used with a decent grinder, and according to a mate who also has one plus a PID’d Silvia it kills the Silvia…No real Crema, but seriously? Crema was a very successful marketing exercise at the dawn of espresso….“scuma”, was it’s initial appellation.
Trouble was, they were never intended for anything flash and the styling is, at best dated. But it’s a simple, strong well made (apart from the ABS) keeper.
Fun to mod too
The pretty one is not mine…