OK, I was intrigued by past mentions of using a cappucchino maker as
a jewelry steamer. I purchased one ( krups) from the thrift store
for 5 bucks. I took it home and dismantled it for the core system. I
figured I had to plug up the coffee drip part so it can be used
completely for steaming. It looks to hold a pint of water. My
question is this. I have to plug the hole where the drip comes out
and I figure i can tap the hole for a bolt. But then I thought how
much steam pressure can this hold, I certainly do not want it to
blow up in my shop area. Should I put in a pressure regulator (
something like on a pressure cooker?) or is the pressure limited by
the size and heating element? The coffee maker is stripped down to
the basics. I plan on making a wood or plexiglass box to hold the
unit, since the plastic housing is no more. anyone have experience in
this? Plans? ideas? is it worth doing? How much pressure can I
expect?? Certainly due to the price of steam cleaners someone else
has ventured this route?
I used a stovetop espresso maker on a hotplate for a while. It did
the job. It had separate opening nozzles on the drip and the steamer,
so I just never opened the drip, just the steam.
But just as with a pressure cooker, of which I have many, I was
always careful to release the pressure when I was done, I never left
it on unless I was directly using it…or waiting for it to come up
before I was using it. Of course the fact it was on a hotplate kept
me honest, didn’t want to walk away from it. But I have to admit it
really made me appreciate the steam cleaner when I finally got one.
And my boyfriend got his beloved espresso maker back…the stovetop
models apparently make a really good cup.
OK, I was intrigued by past mentions of using a cappucchino
maker as a jewelry steamer. I purchased one ( krups) from the
thrift store for 5 bucks. I took it home and dismantled it for the
core system. I figured I had to plug up the coffee drip part so it
can be used completely for steaming.
If you want steam, harness the frother, not the coffee drip part.
As any coffee addict will tell you (and I think I represent some of
the nuttiest), coffee-making requires a certain temperature (90C -
92C) which in fact is demonstrably lower than that for frothing the
B r i a n A d a m
e y e g l a s s e s j e w e l l e r y
Auckland NEW ZEALAND
Well, i saw one today being made commercially for 99 bucks… the
best idea is to get a pressure relief valve and install that on the
drip portion. then put a pull valve on the steamer end for
control… no release valve? kablooey!
You guys keep talking about using a capachino machine for a steam
cleaner. I posted some time ago about a hand held steam cleaner
Harbor Freight sells for under $30 if I remember correctly. Haven’t
tried one, but who knows? Might beat having nothing else. But as for
cleaning jewelry, short of having the bucks for a good ultrasonic
cleaner (and a cheap one is just a waste of money), and a real steam
cleaner (expensive, even for the “Steam Dragon” type), the best
cleaning system I had before I got the equipment I have now was a
steel sauce pan on a cheap hot plate filled with water and a
tablespoon or so of the old granulated “Spic and Span” detergent
(mostly trisodium phosphate), set to a low simmer. Hang the articles
in the water on wires for a minute or so, then rinse. Of course, some
materials like pearls, turquoise, Tanzanite, etc., being heat
sensitive, are not safe to expose to this treatment. After cleaning,
rinse in clear water and lay it on a towel. I used to use a cheap
small compressor, about $100, to blow dry them too. But if you are
doing any real production, you really need to invest in a good
ultrasonic and a steam cleaner. Things come out better and faster.
David L. Huffman
There is a new product on the market called the “Jewelry Spa”. It
was designed by an acquaintance of mine and it is being marketed by
Salton. It combines a cleansing bath which is used for one minute
and a steam jet. It costs $79. I bought one just to see how it
works. For a relatively inexpensive device it is pretty effective.
If one can’t afford hundreds of $ for a steam cleaner, this is an
inexpensive alternative. The usual, no connection with the product,
just satisfied with how it works.
I had considered this too and have an old espresso maker, but the
pressure is lacking compared to a real steam cleaner. It will work
to use the milk frothing attachment, just not great.
Another thing I came across, but haven’t tried yet: I had bought a
bunch of old (and I mean OLD) tools off of a jeweler in my area for
a jewelry class I was assist. teaching. In one of the boxes was a
hot plate steam cleaner. I had to call him back to figure out what
it was. I’ll try to explain how it was built and how it worked,
but I never used it, so I don’t know how well it worked.
It was made with copper water tubing, like what you hook up to a ice
maker. About 1/8 inch. That hooked directly into a faucet or water
line. The copper then ran into a metal housing ( think large
upside-down can) and spiraled about 20-30 times around and came out
the top of the can. The copper then bent down and the end was
smashed and soldered shut. A small hole was drilled into the end of
the copper tubing. The housing sat on a hot plate (which stayed on)
and when you needed steam, you just turn on the water.
Like I said, I’ve never tried it, but would only cost about $10 to
build. If anyone has used one of these, I’d love to know how well
they work .
bryan, the steamer you mention really works good, a friend of mine
has one and used it daily, Lots of steam, hardly no cost and is
fine. I built one and plugged it in and it worked, but never put in
up to run daily. I made it a bit diffferent, used a light bulb.
Like I said, I've never tried it, but would only cost about $10
to build. If anyone has used one of these, I'd love to know how
well they work .
Not much better than the milk steamer. You get the equivalent of
about 20 psi or so, or at least that’s what i’d estimate it as from
the one time I played with one of these, way back when. I think they
may still be in some of the catalogs, though I don’t know for sure.
They DO work a lot better over a gas burner than over an electric hot
plate, but it’s still not a lot of steam pressure. Better than