Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

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LJCoffeeGuy
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Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Sat Jan 10, 2009 11:46 am

Update: I finished refurbishing/repairing the machine and it's in the kitchen working well. The refund from kingcoffee.net was just enough to cover the parts to repair/refurb the unit. Since I had to fix the steam assembly, went ahead and got the S5 long. Also got the updated boiler sensor as the old one was shot and added the dual manometer to view group pressure. So, although I would have liked to had the side panels repaired, I found a way to get it all together.

+++++++
Old info:
I just received a 'refurbished' S1, 252263, and it is definitely not a 'refurbished' unit..more of a used and sold by a coffee company just to get rid of it. Some shipping damage (broken plastic pieces of side panels - dings on back panel) due to bad packing led me to believe that there would be some other issues as well.

The cord plug was cut off and a 15 amp adapter was included even though the jumper was set at 20, I've descaled both boilers and a lot of junk came out, noticed quite a few charred wires and wire covers.

After working on the unit for a while, I got it back together, jumpered it for 15 amp and turned it on. The group seems to work fine, but when I turn on the boiler, the fan comes on and starts to hiss, and doesn't stop hissing! (and it's loud!) The pressure gauge gets up to .5 and no higher, and I can get steam. After about 20 minutes I turned it off.

The attached picture shows the offending hisser, the vacuum breaker (big brass thing next to the water line with a nipple). You can also see a bright red hot connector just next to it....is this normal?[/x]

[attachment=0]IMAG0161.jpg[/attachment]

Steam arm attachment is the original, and moves back and forth, but the previous owner must have loosened/removed some bolts to allow the whole unit to move left and right. If you turn the steam knob the steam arm moves freely left and right. Is this the way it is supposed to be?

In addition several gaskets need replacing, including group. I paid $1100 + $75 shipping - unit, two portafilters and baskets, nothing else. Worth it? They wanted $1400 at first and it was listed online as a V2 with dual manometer, but caught that and they went down to $1100.

Thanks for any help!
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by chas » Sat Jan 10, 2009 12:47 pm

The S1 went on the market in Dec 03. The steam arm was upgraded to the swivel variant on units shipped after 2/20/04, so yours is 5 years old. In the first six months there were several bug fixes offered free to early purchasers. You should look at the page below and see if your machine appears to have any of these upgrades/fixes. Of particular importance is whether it still has the bug where when you increase the fine temp adjustment by +1C the lamp indicators tell you you've decreased the temp by 1C; i.e. backwards and you have. If you have an accurate way to measure the water temp you can adjust the temp by several degrees and tell if the adjustment went the right way or the opposite way. New owners got a free board upgrade but if you have this issue with your machine you probably just want to know how to deal with it rather than forking out $200 for a new controller board.

s1v1/S1Archives.php

As to your actual questions, the big brass thingee you noted is actually the Over Pressure Valve. Behind it is a flat stainless nut with a brass dimple sticking up which is the vacuum breaker valve. This actual vaccum breaker valve has been an issue with a number folks. When the temp comes up to boiling, the steam pressure is supposed to close that valve. You could very well have some mineral clogging (if it is that valve) which can probably be cleaned out after removing it. If, on the other hand, it is the big brass OPV, then it is probably shot and stuck open. It most likely would need to be replaced.

You photo is not enough of a close up and is a little fuzzy so I can't see the red thing you mentioned well enough to tell if there is a problem. If you haven't checked already, the VI Site linked at the top of the page has a variety of closeup photos of a new S1 and the VII/VII Mini Site has a page with side-by-side photos of a VI and a VII. This may be interesting because it actually has the best close up photos of the top of a pristine steam boiler.

Based on your description of the machine, I'd say you overpaid. $1100 might have been OK if it truly arrived in perfect restored condition. These machines were only $1500 when this one was new.
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Mon Jan 12, 2009 7:37 pm

Well, the company in Michigan (kingcoffee.net) says that they have filed a claim with UPS and UPS will come pick up the machine and transport it to a UPS inspection facility. It's strange how this was sold as a "Factory Refurbished" unit in working condition machine with no disclosed issues or damage, packed very poorly, now working well, etc. etc. and they think UPS will grant a claim for damage and then forward repair money to me. It's been a pain since this morning. They also said that is all they will do, even though the unit doesn't work properly.

Here are pictures of the unit:
http://s701.photobucket.com/albums/ww15 ... %20issues/

Please let me know if you think this is a refurb, if you think this was packed correctly, and about how much to replace the back, sides, steam arm attachment, cord, and any wiring/opv/etc. I would really appreciate it!

Oh, and the unit was listed as a V2, but received the V1. Am I correct in assuming this? Here's the link:
http://www.kingcoffee.net/product_info. ... 11844c92a5

And their site said it was a "Factory Refurbished" unit....
http://www.kingcoffee.net/store.php/cof ... 11844c92a5

I like how it said "Refurbished No Brainers"...were they referring to themselves?

I'll keep you updated... Thanks for replying.
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by Endo » Mon Jan 12, 2009 8:08 pm

Man....that really sucks. I feel your pain. :-(

These KingCoffee guys seem like total jerks. I'd say try and collect all you can in terms of a UPS claim, but then call these guys out on all coffee forums and let everyone know they are jerks selling abused second hand gear as "refurbished". Tell everyone you can to avoid them so nobody else gets ripped off.

You then have to decide whether you want to keep it and try to refurbish it yourself, or simply sell it as an honest "very used" machine for $800 or so and take the loss. Someone will be willing to take it for $800 since there are many people who would love a bargain and are willing to spend the time fixing it up.

If you decide YOU are that "fixerup" guy, you should be able to send your list to Chris Coffee and he'll give you the prices. You my have to wait for parts and I don't hink it will be cheap.

If it makes you feel any better, almost everyone has been burned at least once this way. The old adage "you get what you pay for" is especially true in these Internet days.

Best of luck. :smile:
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by chas » Mon Jan 12, 2009 8:10 pm

I think the factory was refurbished not the VI! They really sold you a bill of goods. Lousy packing job too.

It looks like they cut and pasted the specs from a site that does sell the VII. It says dual manometer, optional timer, and swivel steam arm. On the other hand the tiny photo that you can hardly see is a VI.
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by Endo » Mon Jan 12, 2009 8:31 pm

I think it shows how important it is to get photos of the gear if you buy second hand. Ask for as many as you need to make yourself comfortable. If the guy says no, then just don't buy it. The photos are also great for proof if there is shipping damage.
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by MDL » Mon Jan 12, 2009 9:07 pm

You should push the vendor. They clearly lied to you since the specs are for a VII and you got a VI. Small claims court, an internet blitz, the BBB. Anything you can think of. I would try to return the machine and get your money back. Did you pay in a manner that you can stop?

Good luck and I suggest that you try to get rid of the thing. You paid way too much for a used and broken VI.

Hang in there,
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Re: Refurb unit with issues and constant hiss from boiler

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:08 am

Hey guys, here's the place I purchased it from:

The unit was purchased from King Coffee Company
King Coffee & Tea Services, Corporation, 4220 Edgeland, Royal Oak, Michigan 48073
Web: http://www.KingCoffee.net Phone: 248-549-0054 Toll Free: 800-537-8848 Fax: 248-549-0311

Owner: Jim Spear Email: jspear@kingcoffee.net

It appears that my concerns aren't being addressed. I have copied several emails and a left a voicemail to Jim Spear (owner) and have not received any return contact. I was trying to avoid problems by putting out the name, but they don't seem to wish to help.

I also posted some info on CoffeeGeek.com.
http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/espres ... nes/401890

Sorry if this is considered cross posting or a problem, but I have been a member of CoffeeGeek.com for a while. I found you guys after getting the machine and knew you are the experts on the Vivaldi.

Feel free to read the above and post there or on here. I will keep you, my new friends, updated.

Looking forward to eventually getting this worked out. It sure would great if Jim Spear from KingCoffee.net would step up and contact Chris Coffee and arrange to have me sent a V2, like I had hoped to get!
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by chas » Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:28 pm

Haven't heard from you on this in a week or so. What did you decide to do?
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by Endo » Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:38 pm

I read in another forum that he has worked out a deal with the owner and UPS.
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:37 am

Hi all. It's been a busy week at work, but have managed to work on the S1 and have been making some nice espressos.

KingCoffee.net owner refunded $550 for parts/time to refurb the machine. I bought parts from ChrisCoffee and have it all working.

At this point I have a working unit, refurbed to my standards, and have replaced the steam arms with the swivel adapter and S5, and added a dual pressure gauge (same one on the V2 S1).

What isn't working out so well is that UPS apparently denied any claim and I have several emails into Jim Spear, the owner, that haven't been returned. One of his employees said he is out until next week. His email is: jspear@kingcoffee.net

It was my understanding in the phone call with Jim that the $550 was to refurb and the UPS claim would take care of replacing damaged side/back panels. Since I've already done the work on the unit and UPS isn't going to pay, should Jim shell out some, or make a good will gesture and pay 1/2 the parts, say $250?

Perhaps some other emailing him would help get things rolling......

Thanks all, you've been a great support.
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by Endo » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:09 am

So you paid $1100 for a damaged S1V1 and had half refunded? I'd say $550 for that machine is a good deal.

Looks like Jim came through already and did his part. I'd say quit while you're ahead. :grin:
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by MDL » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:47 am

Push for fair compensation for the apparent shipping damage. You overpaid drastically for a machine and then had to shell out substantial money and time to do what was supposed to have been done already. If you had received a refurbished machine for your $1100 and then had the price reduced to $550 you would have a good deal; that is not what you have. The seller should make the exterior damage right for you.
Good luck,
Mark

The internet is very powerful in situations like this. You should be sure that you post this on all of the coffee sites so that others are aware of the issues with this vendor. As an example, when BMW released the current M3 a dealer auctioned a car on EBay. He then refused to sell the car to the winning bidder because the bid was not as much as he had wanted. The bidder posted on all of the BMW boards and was able to raise enough noise that BMW NA and others forced the dealer to provide the car for the winning bid.

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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by chas » Fri Jan 23, 2009 11:27 am

As for the UPS damages, was the box obvious damaged? If the box came through in anything close to pristine condition, UPS could rightly claim that the damage was due to poor packaging by the shipper. On the other hand, if the box was all beat up, they should pay out.

Originally CC would ship S1s with the original shipping carton inside another very sturdy box with custom made foam corner spacers between the boxes. Virtually every purchaser on the west coast received their units showing some minor case damage even when the box looked OK on arrival. About a year or so ago I understand CC started to use some sort of pallet system and I haven't heard anyone complain about such damage since.

I sold my original VI to a guy on the west coast. I reused that original box system and it arrived with no damage. However, I also completely filled the space between the two boxes with Styrofoam peanuts and didn't just count on those corner inserts. In addition, I wrapped all the accessories, PF, drip tray, etc. in bubble wrap and shipped them in a separate box. When something weighs that much and also has a bunch of loose, heavy parts, properly packaging is everything!
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by Endo » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:49 pm

MDL wrote:Push for fair compensation for the apparent shipping damage. You overpaid drastically for a machine and then had to shell out substantial money and time to do what was supposed to have been done already. If you had received a refurbished machine for your $1100 and then had the price reduced to $550 you would have a good deal; that is not what you have. The seller should make the exterior damage right for you.
Good luck,
Mark

The internet is very powerful in situations like this. You should be sure that you post this on all of the coffee sites so that others are aware of the issues with this vendor. As an example, when BMW released the current M3 a dealer auctioned a car on EBay. He then refused to sell the car to the winning bidder because the bid was not as much as he had wanted. The bidder posted on all of the BMW boards and was able to raise enough noise that BMW NA and others forced the dealer to provide the car for the winning bid.
I think $550 for that machine as shown (with the damage shown in the pictures) is a fair (even good) deal. I think Jim did the right thing and should be commended for his action rather than threatened. If there is anything else to work out, it's with UPS.

This is someone's business reputation you are toying with. Be careful, if you use the Internet for defamation, you can still be sued.
Endo

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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:02 am

The machine is working well now that the internals are refurbished. So, for a $1175 ($1100 + $75 shipping) machine with a refund of $550 for parts/refurbishing/time, I am almost back to $1100 invested in the unit, but with some shipping damaged items.

The box looked fine, not crushed. Back packing. Originally the lady at the company said that UPS would be the only remedy to getting the unit fixed and basically said I was stuck with the unit as is (not refurbished/working/damaged). With UPS denying the claim, I would have had a bad unit and no compensation. Then I would have called the credit card company, etc.
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Re: Refurb unit with damage, issues and constant boiler hiss

Post by fiddlefly » Sat Jan 24, 2009 1:47 pm

endo wrote:I think $550 for that machine as shown (with the damage shown in the pictures) is a fair (even good) deal. I think Jim did the right thing and should be commended for his action rather than threatened. If there is anything else to work out, it's with UPS.

This is someone's business reputation you are toying with. Be careful, if you use the Internet for defamation, you can still be sued.
I agree with that ...

I understand where you are coming from I got a used machine that was in poor shape when it got here... (although not as bad)
And I had to spend my own money to repair the broken stuff. I figured if I did not want to pay the full price for a new machine, this is one of the inconvenients I had to deal with! I am glad that he gave you money for your time and parts.
I have read your comments on other forums as well as this one and I believe you probably costed that man a lot more then a couple hundred bucks ... I mean we're all humans we all make mistakes sometimes, I'd say cut him loose, he paid enough...
IMHO ;-)
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Consider the issue resolved.... thanks for the support.

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Sun Jan 25, 2009 11:16 pm

Yeah, kingcoffee.net did refund back enough, got parts and repaired it and it's in the kitchen right now. I was hoping that UPS would have paid something, but then again, the company didn't pack it adequately.

What was of concern was the lack/difficulty of communication. I still have yet to receive replies to my emails from the owner from the last week.

Fiddlefly: I was in conversation with the guy your bought your unit from. I was interested in the package with the cimbali jr, but couldn't get the price right for the unit (the cimbali was too much). Sorry to hear that you had some issues with the unit and it needed repairs. The guy represented it as working and no problems were disclosed. What problems were there with the unit?

Here's the unit next to my new (to me) mazzer mini:
IMAG0187.jpg
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by JohnB » Mon Jan 26, 2009 8:24 am

Who makes the timer you have on the front of your machine? Model? It looks like it matches the Vivaldi better then most I've seen.
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Re: Consider the issue resolved.... thanks for the support.

Post by fiddlefly » Mon Jan 26, 2009 3:40 pm

highstrings wrote:Yeah, kingcoffee.net did refund back enough, got parts and repaired it and it's in the kitchen right now. I was hoping that UPS would have paid something, but then again, the company didn't pack it adequately.

What was of concern was the lack/difficulty of communication. I still have yet to receive replies to my emails from the owner from the last week.

Fiddlefly: I was in conversation with the guy your bought your unit from. I was interested in the package with the cimbali jr, but couldn't get the price right for the unit (the cimbali was too much). Sorry to hear that you had some issues with the unit and it needed repairs. The guy represented it as working and no problems were disclosed. What problems were there with the unit?

Here's the unit next to my new (to me) mazzer mini:
IMAG0187.jpg
The guy sold it to me without the grinder. What happenned was shipping damage, I had to straighten the frame remove some dents... not much, nothing mechanical (that I know of as of now) It is working but but is definately not newww (!)
I just think that buying used,big heavy expensive machines from far away (unless sent by freight and properly ensured through a good shipping company) is not a way I will go anymore... I figure my last experience was worth that much.
That said, the man I dealt with (the shipper) was very helpful and I consider myself lucky (extremely) to have this machine working properly in my home.
Also, I am happy that your adventure finished well!
I hope you'll enjoy your new old machine as much as I do mine!
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by chas » Mon Jan 26, 2009 6:23 pm

I didn't remember you stating before that the frame was bent, too. Even with a really bad packing job, it's amazing that UPS could shake, rattle, and roll it enough to do that and still not damage the box. Those guys are real artists! :violent1:
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Re: Consider the issue resolved.... thanks for the support.

Post by Endo » Mon Jan 26, 2009 8:22 pm

fiddlefly wrote:
The guy sold it to me without the grinder. What happenned was shipping damage, I had to straighten the frame remove some dents... not much, nothing mechanical (that I know of as of now) It is working but but is definately not newww (!)
I just think that buying used,big heavy expensive machines from far away (unless sent by freight and properly ensured through a good shipping company) is not a way I will go anymore... I figure my last experience was worth that much.
That said, the man I dealt with (the shipper) was very helpful and I consider myself lucky (extremely) to have this machine working properly in my home.
Also, I am happy that your adventure finished well!
I hope you'll enjoy your new old machine as much as I do mine!
I buy all my stuff local.

I got burned a while ago and won't buy anything fragile or valuable online. I know I'm probably passing up some good deals, but I just get too nervous.
Endo

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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by fiddlefly » Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:58 pm

chas wrote:I didn't remember you stating before that the frame was bent, too. Even with a really bad packing job, it's amazing that UPS could shake, rattle, and roll it enough to do that and still not damage the box. Those guys are real artists! :violent1:
Yes they are pretty good ! Last year, they destroyed a Mazzer grinder and crushed a chai syrup shipment from Intelligentsia, this year, the Vivaldi... and they charge for it! :bounce: Quite a deal!!!!!
Plus when they broke my grinder, they charged me for sending back parts!!! I refused to pay and they sent collection agency after me... I looooove them brownies! :lol:
And oh yeah the delivery guy that "dropped" off my machine told me word for word... "MAN! I would never get that kind of shipment through us!"
Go figure...
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by JohnB » Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:32 am

fiddlefly wrote: Yes they are pretty good ! Last year, they destroyed a Mazzer grinder and crushed a chai syrup shipment from Intelligentsia, this year, the Vivaldi... and they charge for it! :bounce: Quite a deal!!!!!
Plus when they broke my grinder, they charged me for sending back parts!!! I refused to pay and they sent collection agency after me... I looooove them brownies! :lol:
And oh yeah the delivery guy that "dropped" off my machine told me word for word... "MAN! I would never get that kind of shipment through us!"
Go figure...
The best part is that they are self insured so the same company that destroys your goods gets to refuse your claim! Years ago I shipped a reel to reel tape player(remember those?)back to N.J. for repair by UPS. Somehow the driver managed to back over my package before it got there! Needless to say that was the end of that piece of equipment.
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by fiddlefly » Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:20 pm

:lol:
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:52 pm

JohnB -
That timer does look great on the S1, doesn't it? That timer was included as the 'digital timer upgrade' on a new heat press I purchased a couple of months ago. The wife tried to nab it for school, it didn't stick to the stainless steel on the Andreja I had, but kept it hidden away until I had the right unit.

I don't think this was more than a $3 unit otherwise the company wouldn't have included it. If several people are interested I will call the company I got the heat press from and see if I can buy a dozen or so.
Vivaldi S1 V2; K10, Mazzer SJ, Maestro Plus; SC/TO, Behmor 1600, RK Drum BBQ; Drip: Clever Coffee Dripper

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JohnB
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by JohnB » Wed Jan 28, 2009 8:37 am

highstrings wrote:JohnB -
That timer does look great on the S1, doesn't it? That timer was included as the 'digital timer upgrade' on a new heat press I purchased a couple of months ago. The wife tried to nab it for school, it didn't stick to the stainless steel on the Andreja I had, but kept it hidden away until I had the right unit.

I don't think this was more than a $3 unit otherwise the company wouldn't have included it. If several people are interested I will call the company I got the heat press from and see if I can buy a dozen or so.

I'm interested, if you post a pic & some info in the Accessories section I bet others might be also. Is the magnet coated? i.e. does it scratch the chrome like some timers have? Any issues with it falling off when you press the buttons?
Speedster/Bosco Sorrento/ K10WBC/K30/Bunnzilla
KvdW/Pullman/RB Tampers
Hario NCA 3 & 5s/Wooden Neck Dripper/Buono
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LJCoffeeGuy
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Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by LJCoffeeGuy » Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:04 pm

JohnB,
I noticed that some small scratches have been made by the timer. I think I may use some double-sided tape and try that for a while. Any potential issues?

Darren
Vivaldi S1 V2; K10, Mazzer SJ, Maestro Plus; SC/TO, Behmor 1600, RK Drum BBQ; Drip: Clever Coffee Dripper

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JohnB
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Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2007 12:01 pm
Location: Northeastern Ct.

Re: Refurb unit - fixed, in kitchen, working well!

Post by JohnB » Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:32 am

highstrings wrote:JohnB,
I noticed that some small scratches have been made by the timer. I think I may use some double-sided tape and try that for a while. Any potential issues?

Darren
You could try it but I think you might have trouble keeping tape on a hot surface. Nothing to lose as any glue left behind could be cleaned off easily with citrus cleaner. I had the same scratching issue with my timer so I just use the fold out support on the back. The timer Chas & Niko use has a rubber coated magnet so no scratching issues but they say its easy to knock it loose when pushing buttons.
Speedster/Bosco Sorrento/ K10WBC/K30/Bunnzilla
KvdW/Pullman/RB Tampers
Hario NCA 3 & 5s/Wooden Neck Dripper/Buono
Zassenhaus Knee Mill
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