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  • There are definitely some folks here much more knowledgeable about the manual, non-electric lever machines than I am. But if I was going to be buying one, top things for me to look for would be:

    • Whether thermal losses are going to be an issue when adding water to the coffee
    • Stability of the machine when pressing on the lever
    • Availability of spares (likely just gaskets really)

    Would be nice to have a standard portafilter/basket but I wouldn't be surprised if this wasn't really an option due to baskets frequently being quite large to also hold water in this machines.

  • My preference is the rok. It seems like it’s been around for a long time so I’d expect parts to be available.

    Thermal losses are always going to be an issue without a heat source. But add a heat cup and portafilter you’ve covered the bases well.

    The only thing I don’t like about the robot is the arms.

    I love the lever design of the flair but it seems really fiddley

  • Thermal losses are always going to be an issue without a heat source

    True, but you'll probably see a split between those that claim to have so little thermal mass that losses aren't an issue, or those who claim that they have better temperature stability due to more thermal mass (which would likely require pre-heating).

    I've not used any of the popular offerings (Robot/Rok/Flair), but with my La Pavoni I need to hold down on the portafilter when using the lever to prevent it tipping forward. The base of the Flair does look a bit longer so probably more stable, but probably worth checking that it's not an issue (I mean, you'd hope that would get addressed at the design stage, but you never know!)

  • The robot definitely makes much nicer espresso, more consistently than the Rok. Due to absolutely needing to preheat, it used to take me about ten minutes to make an espresso with the Rok. Takes two mins with the Robot. Easier to clean. Better made. Better spares available.

    But it is pricey and if you don’t like it aesthetically then that’s fair enough. I personally adore it.

  • has some useful threads built around the Robot, some stuff on the Rok as well.

  • Have you considered a la Pavoni?


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