Olympia Cremina Rebuild Instructions Continued:
Boiler Gasket R&R
Indications: Water under machine, rusted bottom cover, shorted wiring.
Tools Required: 5mm hex wrench, small screwdriver, putty knife or scraper, pencil and paper.
Most people avoid replacing this gasket because it seems like too big a job, but actually it is neither complicated or difficult and it requires very little machine disassembly.
Remove the top boiler nut, cap and cover pieces, mostly for safety as not to scratch or dent them.
Lay machine on its back or side.
Remove the expanded metal bottom cover held in with one small screw.
Loosen and remove the cap bolts on the boiler bottom plate. This is aided by using a small torque increaser, a small tube or most handily the barrel of a 6 way screwdriver. As with the group, do not force, but break them free by applying constant even force.
When all 6 bolts are out take a small screwdriver or putty knife and separate the boiler bottom plate from the upper part by prying.
With the bottom plate off you now can clean off the old gasket with whatever tool seems best suited for the task. Make sure you get it all and pay special attention to the milled groove in the body of the boiler. This groove is responsible for the sealing of the boiler so get it nice and clean.
Examing the bottom of the boiler and DRAW A WIRING DIAGRAM. Do not rely on a digital photo of the wiriing but take a minute to draw a diagram noting the color of wires and the connections. This will not only help you later but also bring a bit of enlightenment on just how the machine works. You can remove the wires at any time, but it is a bit easier to pull the spade connectors when the bottom plate is off the boiler.
Disconnect all wires to the heating element and bottom switch and push out of the way.
At this time manually clean the element and scour out the boiler with steel wool (it's great if there is a small handed person about to help you here). Examine the inside of the boiler to make sure it is clean with no flaking or deposits. It does not have to shine, this is overkill, just be clean.
Once the sealing surfaces are all cleaned up, place the new boiler gasket on the bottom plate and insert one or two cap bolts to keep the gasket in place.
Apply the bottom plate with gasket to the boiler and start first one then two then all 6 of the bolts, making sure the gasket is even all around.
Tighten the bolts in a star pattern so the plate meets the boiler evenly. Take your time and feel the gasket as it compresses. Feel the approximate torque of each of the bolts and try to get an even set of the bottom plate against the boiler. Remember, you are taking advantage of that small milled groove and do not need to flatten the seal to paper thinness. Just get all the bolts good and snug and once again, you can always tighten them a bit more later.
Reconnect all of the wires using your wiring diagram as a guide.
Fill the boiler with water and cycle the machine a couple of times while checking for leaks.
Empty the boiler and check the tightness of the boiler bolts, good and snug, but if it didn't leak, they are tight enough already but jsut give them a once over with your wrench and cheater bar.
Replace the bottom metal cover and the body panels.
Have an espresso and congratulate yourself on a job well done.
About that boiler insulation......just what is the OEM insulation? Asbestos? Asbestos like? There were a lot of spray on insulation products that did not contain asbestos so we are not speculating, but better to err on the side of caution. This is one way to remove it if it is loose or flaking in some area....this means it will slowly flake off all around. Completely remove the boiler from the frame, which is easiest during the boiler gasket replacement since you will have the element off at this point. Place the entire boiler in a bucket of water and soak overnight. Place the wet soaked boiler in the center of a newspaper on a plastic garbage bag and scrape off the wet coating with a putty knife or other blade. Gather up the debris and dispose of properly (no recommendation here). This should clean up the boiloer pretty well and some steel wool scrubbing while in the bucket of water will finish the job.
Continue to Olympia Cremina Rebuild Instructions, Part 4 for Sight Glass Seal R & R: