[Homeroast] Dead Mazzer SJ

Justin Schwarz houstini at comcast.net
Wed Mar 23 01:06:39 CDT 2011

I bought a used SJ a couple of years ago for a smokin deal and figured that even if it was 20+ years old that it should last quite some time in my home use.  Today I had the Brewtus warmed up and ready with a couple of beans in their peak rest window and went to grind for the first shot of the day and had no power.  

I first wiggled the cord thinking that there must be a short or something I don't know how the stationary grinder could develop a short overnight, but wishful thinking I guess.  Next, I tried googling and checking the H-B forum and others for any info about where to start troubleshooting this issue, these things are built like tanks as we all know so I could not find anyone with a similar problem.  Time to call EPNW, I just wanted to know where to start troubleshooting this thing, They told me that if it was the motor I would have better luck and less $$$ into it if I just found another used mazzer. 

I almost had an excuse to go grinder shopping, my wife was spared the experience of me trying to find a better grinder, after all if I had to replace it I would have to make a significant improvement right?  I was happy with that scenario, but being without espresso until I could afford another (better) grinder really made me unhappy.  I decided to call Espresso Machine Experts in Portland to see if one of their techs could help me, and I'm glad I did, sort of.  I found out that the timer was the most likely culprit and went on to bypass the timer for testing purpose and the grinder hummed just fine.  I'm glad I didn't give up on this grinder.

My question is this: the replacement timer is $81 and I feel that is too much to spend on a switch, albeit much cheaper than a new grinder, just seems excessive.  Is there any other way that I could use a different switch, or foot pedal? to avoid the cost of this relatively simple timer.  I am going to bring the timer to Platt(electrical parts supplier) or Norvac(electronics supply house)  tomorrow and see if I can find a suitable replacement.  Chassis modification of the SJ may be neccesary, I at least expect to drill some new holes to mount the switch

Any Ideas or suggestions are appreciated


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