I just finished with an older Cimbali M29. I removed everything except the wiring. After removing scale and replacing some parts, I'm pleased with its level of function. Now I'm looking for an older lever machine. I'd prefer that it ran on gas. I'll covet it if necessary.
Best choice for me would be 80's Marzocca, older Rancilio, or used San Marco. I think this will take a while to find.
I removed all copper and brass pipe, fitting, and every where water could go. I pulled out the boiler replaced element end seal and all seals to the group heads. It's a 2 group M29. I soaked and pounded the scale out of everything. I replaced the pump and the flow meters. I buffed out all the copper and brass with quad steal wool and a dremel. That was ADD boy going a little over the top. Once I cleaned one piece of pipe I couldn't stop. The brass looked like gold and you could see yourself in the copper. I want to bring the level of detail to the next machine. I'll take the next one down to the frame and have it sand blasted and powder coated. I'll mod it to operate at the highest level and redesign the skin to be custom. It will be a one of a kind inside and out.
Are you enjoying Barista Exchange? Is it helping you promote your business and helping you network in this great industry? Donate today to keep it free to all members. Supporters can join the "Supporters Group" with a donation. Thanks!