This is an update about the condition of the Olympia Cremina 67 that I recently acquired through ebay.
I had disassemble and clean its grouphead as well as descaling last week because the espresso I produced from it is much less than my expectation. All the components within the grouphead such as the piston and the piston gaskets, piston rod, and the inner sleve of the group head as well as the lever slot. All the grease were taken off and new foodsafe greese was reapplied. Nothing looks obviously wrong with the grouphead except a really thick coat of previous greese was applied that could have possibly block something.
After the reassembly, the grouphead seams to operate a little bit smoother but it was quite smooth to begin with anyway. So I went ahead yesterday to pull several shots on the Cremina to see if anything has change. Well, the lever operate smoother and the shots are better with much more crema! It taste better too with more body.
The bean used was home roasted Rwandan Abakudekawa; which served as an excellent single origin espresso. The Rwanda is roasted medium+++ (FC+) with second crack audible for about 20-30 seconds (this is usually as dark as I would go with any kind of specialty beans that I have). The coffee is fresh (about 1 week post roast and showing minimal infrequent old splotches. Drip brewing reveal that the Rwanda has nice reserved acidity (maybe cherry?) and the body is about medium and stay on the pallet nicely.
As the pictures shows, the crema is decent but very thin in comparison to shots of this same bean from the Nuova Simonelli Musica which is a pump espresso machine. The crema quickly dissipate when the espresso is stir. The taste of the cremina's espresso is decent which have taste from the drip; however, I find the body and seem to be much lacking when compare to the shots from the Musica and overall the shots are much inferior.
I believe that this is not the true potential of the Olympia Cremina because all account from others user indicate that the Cremina can product shot with Crema as thick and persistent as any other capable espresso machine. So I think that there are more thing I need to be doing with the machine; perhaps with a full boiler dissassembly and well as changing all the gaskets (which appears to be fine but you never know!