I've been told that La Marzocco doesn't support well with parts. Anyone had great or bad experiences with them.

 

Looking to open a shop in a while and trying to figure out which machine to have as the 'cornerstone' piece of equipment for our shop.

 

La Marzocco appears to be out there and very popular - but since I have no experience with them, I'm not sure.

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I've never had any issues getting parts from La Marzocco. I'd venture to say that they are also one of the better-supported manufacturers out there too, due to their broad popularity in the states.

 

If you are doing your own work, it is worth noting that Espresso Parts has a good selection of parts for them.

 

Check with your local service... who does your best local tech support?

Local service supports Unic and La Cimbali.

At least I'm not aware of others - but I'll certainly look into it.

Cimbali are great machines, nice build quality and good shots. Their distribution structure is really unusual though, so chances are good that your local guy is the only one in the area that services them. Most other manufacturers (including La Marzocco) will sell parts to multiple service companies in the same area, so you have a little more flexibility. That's the situation I'm in - I can't get parts for Cimbali but everyone else is happy to sell to me.
My experience has been great with La Marzocco.  I've interacted with them quite a bit and have found them to be knowledgeable, friendly, and professional.  They've got quite a stock of parts as do people like Espresso Parts in Olympia and Espresso Parts Source in LA.  You'd have to have a rare machine, indeed, if you couldn't get parts for it.  That being said, if your local tech does not know the machines then that might be the thing to make you look at something different.

I'm trying to find out directly from some of the main espresso machine making companies if they have support in the Fresno, CA area. The 5th largest city in the state and there's hardly an independent shop around. Tons of Starbucks (40+)!

We're hoping to change that in the next few months with our shop.

I think the nearest Rancilio tech is around Bakersfield which is about an hour away (not too bad). 

The nearest Unic or LaCimbali is in Fresno (very convenient).

Working on checking with La Marzocco.

Another option is to get trained and become the tech myself. Looking into that too.

If you are a dealer, in my experience, they are fantastic both from the service and parts support side. You do have to know the machine well enough to be able to dialog with them about parts and service. All of the parts lists and manuals are available on the US site. You can attend La Marzocco tech training and they just posted more classed on their blog.
If you're not going to do your own service, best to find out who services the machine you're going to buy. A great machine is just a paper weight if it's not working and you can't get someone to fix it.

When I worked for Java City in Sacramento, we used Bev Tech for our service at our Fresno accounts, and they should have experience with La Marzocco. I couldn't get their website to work, but their number is (559) 485-8700.

Just a note....We've had our GB5 MP 2grp up and running continuously for the last month with no issues.  We never had time to bench test it prior to installation and it's been running fantastic.  Everyone I know locally has had great service from tech support when needed.
I would add that if you need to get a hold of someone at LM USA, question/parts inquiry/etc, try email first.  They're rather good (and quick) at replying to e-mail.
Thanks all for your replies. I've been in touch with Mike Lanz with LM in Seattle and he's helping me a lot with the questions I have.

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