[Homeroast] Rancilio Silvia (Barry Luterman)

Paul Jolly pauljolly65 at yahoo.com
Wed May 23 16:39:39 CDT 2012

I started on a Solis SL-70, graduating to a Silvia after a year or so.  Spent 2-1/2 years with it, so I got to know it quite well.  Barry's comments are spot-on; he's got every detail correct, as far as my experience went.  I added the PID and it helped with temp stability, but still a slow machine for several shots in a row.

The next stop was a Vibiemme HX machine.  It was faster & more temp-stable.  It also cost a hell of a lot more, but I could afford it at the time and it was totally worth it.  Beware of the lure of the god-shot: once you pull one, you'll be seeking another, then another, then another (which explains much of the upgrade-itis in home espresso making).  


Date: Wed, 23 May 2012 08:38:11 -0700
From: Barry Luterman <lutermanb at gmail.com>
To: "A list to discuss home coffee roasting. There are rules for this
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Subject: Re: [Homeroast] Rancilio Silvia
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The Silvia is the espresso machine I broke in on. She is a demanding
unforgiving mistress. One little error in preparation and the shot is
sorely damaged. However, if you master her she is capable of producing
outstanding shots. There is probably no better machine to learn on.
Master her and when you move up to a more complete machine you will
have little or no trouble producing consistent excellent shots.
Good resale value
2 way valve.
heavy construction (retains heat)
Easy to clean and maintain
If you are not  using foaming much or pulling multiple shots convenient to use
Seldom needs repair. Very well built

Broad thermostat shots can vary wildly in temperature.. Shots
seemingly pulled exactly the same can vary from bitter to excellent to
weak. Can be overcome with installation of a PID bur at more expense.
Time consuming pulling multiple shots even with PID. If you have
company expect to spend a long time in kitchen pulling shots.
If doing a lot of steaming (and that does happen with company) machine
is way too slow and a bit difficult to clean. Consider a double
Because the machine is so well built if you do decide to upgrade when
the machine starts to age and require repairs. You will have to wait a
long long time. But as I said it does have good resale value and is a
great machine for learning and use for one person having an occasional
shot of espresso with no steamed milk added.

On Tue, May 22, 2012 at 10:47 PM, John <johnmonteleone at gmail.com> wrote:
> I would love to get an espresso machine for my home. ?I've been reading about the Rancilio Silvia ? And wanted to get some opinions. I'm not opposed to the price but I've read that it might be expensive for what your getting. Creating foam is not a priority for me. I love a flavorful shot straight up. Any comments anyone.
> John

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