Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

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Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:56 pm

Just bought a 2010 Mini Vivaldi on Ebay. Unfortunately, it arrived with a few issues. I should say up front that the seller has been forthright and responsive, and I'd buy from them again.

Group Boiler Triac Failure Code - RESOLVED
Tangled Manometer Pointers - RESOLVED
Broken Cup Rail - RESOLVED (sort of)

NEW, other issues:
Cracked/missing flag terminal insulation on Steam Boiler
Small leak from hot water outlet at boiler fitting

My main question is whether there's anything else I should check for "hidden damage." Now, my story:

I noticed the cup rail as I was unpacking it and thought, "bummer." I took off all the body panels with the intent of looking inside the brew boiler. I noticed some of the panels were misaligned, whereas the listing photos had not shown this. I shrugged it off at the time. I proceeded to check things out. I needed to switch it to 15 amp mode for my kitchen, but I also noticed that the timer switch was set to "on." Since there's no timer, I moved it to "off."

Seller reported it had always been used with RO water so scale was not an issue. Inside of the brew boiler was spotlessly clean, so very pleased there. Since there was quite a bit of condensation throughout the machine's interior, I let it all warm up and dry overnight. This was Friday. Seller had not drained the boilers, but this shouldn't have been an issue given the mild weather at the origin and destination and everywhere between.

Saturday morning I turned it on and everything seemed to work. I even pulled a few shots with it, but I then noticed the "tangled" manometer. "Wow," I thought, "This thing must have fallen off the truck." And then the broken rail and sprung panels made sense. Luckily nothing had been bent or seriously broken. The outer box had appeared pristine, and the machine had been well packed.

I left the thing on and went about my business, but when I came back for round two about 4 hours later, lights 20 and 21 were flashing at me. My elation turned to bitter disappointment. I unplugged it and went off to sulk. Sunday I plugged it in and turned it on and it started warming up again. I was able to diagnose a bit and realized that it would warm up and behave normally for a little while, but then the group temperature would simply stop cycling. The temp display read "94" but the group was obviously cooling. The Steam boiler works fine. No noises or leaks. Volumetric dosing works. Hot water works. I was eventually able to reproduce the error code by leaving it on for several hours, until I guess it cooled enough for the "brain" to realize something was wrong.

I called Chris' Coffee on Monday and they said it was probably the group temperature sensor, but they recommend replacing the triac at the same time. I ordered both parts and they are on the way, but they're on the "slow boat" and now stuck in New York due to severe winter weather. Might be two weekends from now before I get a chance to fix her. I don't think the heater element is bad, since the machine warms up initially.

I plan to remove the manometer and try to shake the needles loose. No idea if this will work. If not, a new manometer is available from Chris' Coffee. Cup rail is not a huge deal. They are hard to find, but this is a cosmetic detail. Under the cabinets, you hardly notice so I plan to give it a go with super glue.
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Anything else I should be looking for, specifically with regard to shipping issues?

Thanks for listening.
Last edited by RogerB on Wed Apr 05, 2017 2:10 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues

Post by chas » Fri Mar 17, 2017 8:12 pm

You might as well order a new manometer, too. Yours is toast.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:48 pm

Thanks, Chas. New manometer arrives today.

Any tricks to the installation or is it a simple R&R? Do I have to bleed air out of the lines?
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:15 pm

No tricks. Just bolt it in. When you're done as long as both gauges are sitting exactly on "0" things are good.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:18 pm

My new manometer arrived!
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:20 pm

That one looks FUBAR, too.

Should look like this ; i.e. both gauges on 0.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:29 pm

Yeah, pretty much. I've sent a note to Chris' Coffee.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:50 pm

It looks like the box got drop kicked.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 12:02 am

1490328079455-936200122.jpg
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Ok so got the new triac today. How do you get the old one out? I'm coming from the front. Can't figure out the plastic clips or how to get my fingers in there. Looks like I will have to remove the steam triac to get at the group triac. Other posts make this sound easy.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Fri Mar 24, 2017 9:39 am

Remove the right cover. You will see the white plastic pieces sticking through holes in the side of the chassis. Just pinch the ends with a pair of pliers, preferrably needle nose, and push through the hole.

Taking them both out will also give you a chance to dust under them, too!
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:34 pm

Thanks, Chas. I called Chris' this morning for technical assistance before I saw your post. Their answer was the same as yours. The tech mentioned that he gets at the group triac from the rear, but I still don't see how amidst the spaghetti bowl of wiring and other stuff back there.

As for the clips (posts, whatever you call them), I found it easier with standard pliers, and also found that depressing one lobe at a time made for a pretty gentle extraction. My real hangup had been that I was afraid to force it and break something, but I was able to get both triacs out this morning before I had to go to work. Oh, and in case I had broken one of the posts, the Chris' tech said they could provide replacements.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:40 pm

RogerB wrote:Yeah, pretty much. I've sent a note to Chris' Coffee.
And oh, btw, Chris' is sending out a new pressure gauge. They confirmed there's no real way to fix the one that's hung up, and told me to pitch it.

Or I should say, the two that are hung up.

I'm just glad it's not critical to brewing.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:53 pm

Got the new triac in and put it all back together but now it's tripping the GFCI. Did I get my wires crossed?
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Fri Mar 24, 2017 9:10 pm

Unplug the power cables from the boiler heater elements,then turn it on and see if it still trips. It's always possible that the drop that obviously occurred in shipment damaged the boiler heater element.

Also, if you have an ohmmeter you can unplug the machine and also both boiler leads and ohm between the boiler leads and also between each lead and the boiler exterior. Between the leads should be ~6.5ohms. Between each lead and the outside of the boiler should be infinity.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 9:41 pm

I unplugged the steam boiler leads and then plugged in the machine and turned it on. It is not tripping but it's not heating the group boiler either. The boiler light and set temperature (94) are flashing.

....and just now went to 20 and 21 on steady. Probably my 5 minutes were up.

I'll have to pull panels again to get to the group elements.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 10:42 pm

I pulled the leads on the group heating element and the steam boiler heated for the 5 minutes prior to the blocking alarm for a cold group.

I then reconnected the group and turned it on. No GFCI trip this time, but after a bit 19-20-21 flashing.

Recall that before the triac r&r, the group would heat at least for a while.

The forward leads on each triac are connected properly, but I am not certain about the rearward leads as I failed to label them during the removal.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 11:10 pm

Stupid.

Traced the wire from the group triac to the...

...Steam boiler.

Got those swapped and now she's on with both boilers heating.

Keeping my fingers crossed.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Fri Mar 24, 2017 11:34 pm

Now I notice a bit of hissing and slight leakage from the hot water connection atop the steam boiler. Appears not to be the threads but the base hex-head.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Sat Mar 25, 2017 10:58 am

Sounds like you may need to unscrew the fitting and wrap some teflon tape around the threads.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Mon Mar 27, 2017 2:25 pm

Chas,
I can see that the elbow is threaded into a bung with a hexagonal head. Can the bung be unscrewed from the boiler? That appears to be the source of the leak.

Also, the replacement manometer arrived Saturday. Lightning fast service and shipping from Chris' Coffee. I haven't put it in, yet.

Finally, used the machine all weekend and everything seems to be working fine.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by chas » Mon Mar 27, 2017 6:17 pm

RogerB wrote:Chas,
I can see that the elbow is threaded into a bung with a hexagonal head. Can the bung be unscrewed from the boiler?
Yes, it unscrews.
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Re: Ebay Mini Vivaldi II initial issues - What to Check?

Post by RogerB » Wed Apr 05, 2017 2:32 pm

I finally had time to install the new (and operable) manometer over the weekend. A couple tips:
1. The original connections are pretty stiff due to some thread compound used during factory assembly. I also couldn't really get at them with the manometer "in place." So, I undid the bracket first to get a better angle on the connections.
2. Not much leverage available just gripping the manometer body, so I used a long screwdriver as a "pry bar" angled between the two manometer inlet stubs (I'm making up words) to brace against the counterclockwise rotational force of the wrench on the group pressure fitting.
3. The boiler pressure line is teflon into a push fitting. Once the group fitting was free, I just undid the Teflon line from its fitting, and removed the guage to a flat surface.
4. Open end wrenches were just rounding the steam pressure fitting, but now that it was free of the line, I used a box-end wrench and achieved success.
5. With Teflon tape in place of thread compound, installation is a reversal of removal.
6. Unlike other fasteners on the machine, the bracket screw threads into a "free" nut on the backside of the main crossmember, which was difficult to get back in place. It took some patience and a WDT device (thin wire) to manipulate it into position well enough to get the screw started.
7. After that, it took some trial and error to get the gauge properly positioned in the "window" of the front panel.

I also took a crack at fixing the cup rail. Superglue worked well on one joint but not the next one. I ended up getting my finger stuck to the rail twice and overall it looks terrible from up close, but isn't really noticeable in place since the machine is under my cabinets. I have some ideas for the red side panels anyway, involving bondo and paint, but that's for another thread.
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