Happy New Year, welcome to 2013.
Here’s to new beginnings. Cheers! Salute! Sláinte!
We often toast to the health of our family, friends, and neighbors during this time of year. Why not toast your espresso machine’s well being too?
One of the most important preventive maintenance tasks you can perform on your espresso machine is regular basic group maintenance. Just think of it as a ritual. Your espresso machine and you are about to spend some quality time getting to know each other. And we’ll do our part too. In addition to offering free shipping on the largest selection of parts available, Espresso Parts is committed to sending group maintenance reminders all throughout the year.
This is your 1st group service of the New Year. We’d love for you to join us. It’s time to order your parts and tools.
It’s common knowledge that minor espresso machine group maintenance services should be performed quarterly or at the very least, for lower volume shops, twice a year. We are espresso machine group head maintenance evangelists here at Espresso Parts and we try our best to preach it!
We also recommend replacing your group gaskets, group screens, and portafilter baskets all at the same time, following a very thorough group head cleaning. When backflushing we recommend using Espresso Parts Espresso Machine Cleaner.
Espresso machine group screen cut open depicting how much buildup can occur over time.
Beat up, old, cracked baskets.
Here are 2 reasons why we think it is a good idea.
Flavor: Build up of coffee oils around the gasket and above/within your group screen can seriously affect your espresso’s flavor.
Preventive Maintenance: Over time your gaskets can become “baked” in place making them difficult to replace at best.
Changing the gasket, screen and basket together: Over time the mating surface and bottom of the portafilter basket will inevitably wear. By the time symptoms like leaking portafilters become noticeable you may have a bigger problem on your hands. Basket replacement suddenly becomes critical and expedited shipping charges may have to be paid to get the new portafilter baskets quickly. Your new $7-$12 portafilter basket just cost you $40 or so. Don’t let it happen to you.
Do you use some groups more than others? Most places do. Even so it’s best practice to perform the maintenance on all of your groups at the same time. That way your machine remains consistent and uniform regardless of which groups get used.
Over the years Espresso Parts has developed a set of tutorials for general espresso machine maintenance.
- Espresso Machine Backflushing (video and written tutorial)
- Changing Espresso Machine Group Gaskets (written tutorial)
- E61 Group Gasket Replacement & Maintenance (written tutorial)
- and a host of others in our Espresso/Coffee Tutorial section.
Parts Ship Free
at Espresso Parts
Espresso Parts covers your ground shipping for ALL domestic deliveries (Now including Alaska and Hawaii). Now including Alaska and Hawaii!!!
Make sure to use the coupon code PARTSSHIPFREE. It can be entered during your check out process on the check out cart page.
Below you’ll find a selection of group gaskets, portafilter baskets, group screens, and even some kits that contain all you might need to perform your next group maintenance. We stock parts for most makes and models of espresso equipment.
Are you the type that is always looking to push the threshold of quality and consistency? If so this might be an ideal time to consider HQ Parts. HQ stands for High Quality and our HQ Parts Line is made up of aftermarket precision upgrade components designed to take you, your machine, and your espresso to the next level. Our Sproline offerings such as group screens and steam tips are made to last. When kept clean in conjunction with your daily backflushing regime they will substantially outlast common manufacturer made components.
Need Parts Assistance? We Can Help.
If you can’t locate what everything you need below you can find parts specific to your machine in our Commercial Espresso Machine Parts section. If you are still having trouble finding the parts you need try our online customer service chat or or give us a call at (800) 459-5594 or (360) 357-7781. We are available to help from 8AM to 4PM PST, Monday through Friday.
Publishing the new Flying Portafilter Demitasse post earlier reminded me that we hadn’t blogged our newest barista inspired shirt design. Act now and you can be the first barista on your block to have one. They are moving fast so get yours now before this first batch is gone.
These t-shirts are American made, printed locally and designed by Espresso Parts. The Flying Portafilter shirt is part of our exclusive branded collection and we’re pretty sure it’s the best shirt ever made by humans!
All shirts are made of a very soft slate gray colored heather, ring spun fabric. 50% combed cotton, 50% polyester. The Flying Portafilter print is dark forest green.
Made in the USA
50% combed cotton, 50% polyester
Fabric weight: 4.4 oz per square yard
New to our shelves this week is a batch of our classic tulip shaped porcelain demitasse printed up with our newly released Flying Portafilter.
EP Porcelain cups and saucers are manufactured to our exact specifications by one of the best porcelain manufacturers in the world. We have taken great efforts to ensure that these cups meet the demands of restaurants, coffeehouses and espresso bars.
We recently released a brand new shirt with our Flying Portafilter Art and they are indeed flying… off the shelves. Get one before they’re gone.
Have you ever considered customizing your espresso equipment but weren’t really sure where to begin? If so, you’re not alone. Over the last few years there has been an increased demand for custom modifications on espresso machines and grinders, so much so that customization projects have earned a permanent place in equipment budgets of most startup cafés and restaurants. A customized piece of equipment can become the focal point and theme setter for your entire business, not just a necessary bar tool.
Equipment customization can be split into two main modification (mod) categories: cosmetic and functional. Both mod types can add tremendous value to your equipment if the work is performed by a skilled professional. Cosmetic mods include custom color and finish work, body shape design, accent and underbody lighting, accent work (wood, brass, glass, etc.), and custom engraving and graphic designs. Functional mods can include electrical enhancements, hydraulic and mechanical upgrades and functional changes.
Here are a few inspiring examples of customized equipment:
Double Tall, Tokyo, Japan, 2009
Hybrid five group La Marzocco Linea
Shojiro Saito wanted a multipurpose five-group matte black espresso machine.
Espresso Parts modified a five-group Linea MP so that the left two mechanical paddle
groups could be used for tea extraction for tea and milk-based drinks, and the right three groups could be used for espresso.
The espresso side has two groups with programmable touchpads for predosed
drink sizes and one mechanical paddle group for experimenting with preinfusion.
GB5 steam valves were added for their easy 180-degree knob movement, and foot pedal
operation was added to the center steam valve. Add to that a matte black finish with remote control underbody lighting, and Shojiro got a multi purpose stretch limo of a machine.
● powder coat and matte finish
● remote controlled under-body “ground effects” color changing LEDs
● group configuration (MP, MP, AV, MP, AV)
● GB5 steam valves (center valve is foot pedal activated)
● custom wiring and controls
● custom machine plumbing with integrated pitcher rinser in drain tray
● modified group screens and screws
● modified steam tips
● PID of brew and steam heating controls
The Grounds of Alexandria, Alexandria, NSW, Australia, 2012
Restored, hybrid four group La Marzocco GS2.
This machine started as a stock GS2 and had been in storage for years; it was in bad shape. It was then torn apart and rebuilt with restored original parts and new, current production parts. New MP caps and GB5 brew boilers and steam valves were added. It has custom wiring and controls with displays on the operator and customer sides of the machine so that machine temperatures and shot times could be viewed by both. The end product was a hybrid of old and new, all done while keeping the original look and body shape of the classic GS2.
● powder coated frame and steam boiler
● engraved glass sides
● custom material and finish body panels
● wood and acrylic accents
● interior machine lighting
● chrome and brass plating
● GB5 mechanical paddle groups
● brew boilers with dual regulated pumps
● GB5 steam valves and wands
● modified steam tips
● updated safety equipment
● custom wiring with modified GB5 controller
Ma’velous, San Francisco, CA 2010 Musashi
Hybrid four group La Marzocco GB5
This machine started as a stock four group GB5 EE. It then was completely disassembled and customized from the ground up with individual boilers and regulated motors for each group. The body was completely changed, exposing the groups, with engraved glass sides and back revealing a powder coated steam boiler, polished tubing and manicured wiring.
“The four groups, each with its own motor, allow my baristas to dial in different pressure and temperature profiles for the coffees they serve. Right now, I have one for the Ecco, one for the Black Cat, one for the Wendelboe, and one to experiment with,” explains owner Phillip Ma.
● chrome plating
● powder coated steam boiler
● engraved glass body panels
● wood and acrylic accents
● body shape redesign and exposed groups
● individual brew boilers
● exposed mechanical paddle groups
● individual regulated pumps
● foot pedal operated steam valve
● custom wiring and controls
Boxcar Coffee Roasters, Boulder, Colorado, 2011
LM/Synesso hybrid two group
Collaboration build and restoration with owner/roaster Vajra Rich. Vajra used a restored and chrome plated classic GS2 brew boiler with modified, totally exposed paddle groups in an LM/Synesso hybrid he built with a custom body, Mistral steam valves and a lot of creative,
hard work for his café and roastery.
● all chrome exposed GS2 paddle assemblies
● mix of modified and original body paneling
● replacement of mechanical thermostats with current PID controls
● Synesso steam boiler with custom tubing and wiring
● Mistral steam valves
● updated safety devices
Cafe Evoke, Oklahoma City, OK, 2012
La Marzocco three group Linea with matching Mazzer Roburs
● two-tone powder coat body color with matte finish
● matching grinders with rally striping
● custom graphics and wood badges.
Equipment customization is a balancing act of keeping simple things simple while making complex things possible and accessible. The goal is to package everything in a unique, personalized and fully functional way, so the end result is a tangible expression of your vision showcased as a work of art.
Choosing to customize your equipment will lend to an industry that reflects the diversity and individuality of baristas and business owners, and will transform a daily tool into an expression of your personality and style.
Microfiber towels are an essential tool of the trade for cafes devoted to maintaining the most professional appearance. By design they are safe for all your stainless and glass surfaces. Wipe away your worries while you safely clean and polish your espresso machine and grinder, even take care of your bar. We offer our Microfiber Cloth Towels in 3 colors; light blue, brown, and black.
Color code your café’s cleaning system.
At Espresso Parts we’re all a little obsessive compulsive about the cleanliness of our coffee lab. So we started to color code our different cleaning chores by towel.
- Light blue towels: You’re responsible for steamwand and milk pitcher cleaning duties, got it?!
- Brown towels: Your job is to clean and wipe down portafilter baskets, group screens, and gaskets…we clear?!
- Black towels: You have the most important job of all, wipe down and polish the equipment. Seriously, don’t mess this up, you have one job!
You can use our example or we welcome you take the lead and create your own cleaning tasks according to towel color.
We just published the product pages for a limited run printed demitasse cup project. We’ve had both our Brown/White and White Porcelain Demitasse Cups in both the traditional and tulip shape printed up with are famous EP Skull print.
If you act soon you can piggy back a few of these bad boys onto an order and we’ll ship it all to you for free as part of our Holiday Leg Up promotion. It may be a tad early but it doesn’t make these any less perfect for Holiday gifts and stocking stuffers, but wait too long and you may just miss your chance.
This is the first of a few posts we are sharing from the official Hiroshi Sawada blog!