Asides from the odd boiler overfill due likely to the use of plumbed-in softened water, my Rocket Giotto Professional has been largely
problem free. That not counting however a cleaning back flush that jammed the brewing lever -but that is another story.
One early morning I naturally turned on (as I do every 5:30am), the steam valve but there was no steam. as a matter of fact, the entire
knob and assorted bits came away in my hand.
A quick search indicated that the end of the valve shaft with the circlip groove wore right off.
No problem. Ordered a replacement "long shaft" valve.
And no, you have to order a whole new valve - not just the stem.
With a nice new replacement in hand, I had a momentary thought - subliminal. Why not remove the new stem from the new part and replace the
broken stem? Sure enough, the new stem could be easily removed just like a regular garden faucet.
Well, I got a new valve - the whole assembly, for sure there must be a reason Rocket wants you to buy the whole valve. I guess I should
install the whole valve -after all, I've got the part. Might as well use it.
How hard can it be?
Now my mechanical skills are generally restricted to hanging pictures and patching a hole in drywall, so I took out the wrenches, taped up
the jaws, removed the wand and started unscrewing the valve.
So far so good.
It did unscew for a bit until I realized there had to be a backing nut inside the machine and it was spinning freely. If I wanted to
unscrew the thing the rest of the way, I would need a wrench to hold the backing nut in place, while I continued to unscrew the valve from
Life is good and sure enough the valve came out quite nicely until I heard the clink of the backing nut falling to the bottom of the
Hmmm. not so good. No nut - no valve install.
Get the flashlight. No sign of nut.
Tilt machine here and there - maybe I can slide the nut to the side so I can see it and I can put a ball of sticky tape on a stick and
fish for it.
No luck. The nut has disappeared.
The fancy angular polished stainless steel would have to come off. I believe you need a small 7mm socket to remove one nut in the front
left corner plus there are two bolts underneath to unloosen as well. Enlist your spouse, GF, significant other, to lift machine and tolerate your cussin'
OK. Panel is off and aha! the nut is nicely hidden right exactly below the boiler.
Retrieve backing nut and install new valve.
Fire up machine and let it come back up to temperature.
Whoa! steam and water dripping, spewing everywhere. The drip is conveniently located over the main power switch.
White teflon tape maybe? Let's try. No good. Try again. No good, try again. No good. More tape? No, no good.
Fire off email to place where machine was purchased. Wait a few days. Try teflon tape they said.
More searching. Maybe threadlocker? It would have to be food-grade. Loctite makes one but is about $50 for a scant few mls.
Unobtanium is cheaper. Not available at your local hardware store.
Loxeal 18-10? Eureka -found the Canadian distributor. Yes, we have it but sorry we can't sell it retail they said; may be we can find a retailer in your area. Unfortunately, I never heard back from them and two emails went unanswered.
Go back to hardware store and get THICK teflon tape. One wrap was plenty.
Partial sucess - it spits , drips occasionally but it will have to do.
Lesson learned; remove old stem, remove new stem, install new stem in old valve body, throw away new valve body.