After WO2 Italy get rid of the fascism and the many producers of espresso machine came back to life. In 1945 FAEMA was founded in Milan. (Fabbrica Apparecchiature Elettromeccaniche e Affini)
Throughout Italy there was a real race who could develop the best system to make the best coffee. The first machines forced water through grounded coffee with steam pressurized water, but these machine had many disadvantages.
Later they develloped lever machines, which we still see in the marker. With the help of a lever, a spring and a piston, hot water from the boiler could be brought under high pressure through ground coffee. Here lies the origin of the espresso. Also, the current contents of an espresso is partly determined by this system. With human strength, after all, only a limited amount of water could be brought to a pressure of 9 bar. Faema also made such lever machines, the Urania and the President are the best known.
In 1961 Faema came with the revolution in the field of espresso machines: Model E61 was introduced. The model was derived from the Urania, the President has even the same model. The E61 had some very distinctive devellopements:
• The use of a high-pressure electronic pump to force the water at 9 bar pressure through the coffee.
• Heat exchangers in the boiler so the brew groups can kept at a constant temperature by the thermal effect of water.
• The brew group with 3 operation positions which made it also possible to have pre-infusion. (Later even called the E61 brewing unit). The group is controlled by a control Eclipse and is developed in 1961, hence the name E61.
The Faema E61 has been the revolution in the field of professional espresso machines and in most modern espresso machines this group is still used. All competitors took over the use of a pump and heat exchangers quickly after the introduction of the E61. In the years '60 -'70 it was clearly that Faema had won the race in the first place. After several patents went, it became difficult for Faema to keep its posisition as market leader. In the '80 we could see the first other machines with an E61 brew group.
Faema is still making espresso machines (as part of the Cimbali group), but is no longer the market leader. At the beginning of the 21st century Faema has once again tried to duplicate the success of the E61 with the introduction of the Feama E61 Legend. A machine with the same design and approximately the same technique. Of course there are added the necessary modern conveniences. In 2016, an updated version of the Legend is back on the market to celebrate the 55th anniversary of the model.
Today, the original Faema machines are just as popular as in the 60s of the 20th century. We often get question of customers that want to buy an E61, so what is inportant:
1.Often E61 Legends are sold as original E61's. The Legend is easily recognizable in the front punched Faema logo. In the '60s there were no machines with programmed dosing of course.
2.The metal body work has to be in good condition. Many parts of the E61 are still in prodcution, but most parts of the bodywork are no longer available. If you send one part out for chroming you will to send out the complete bodywork for chroming to obtain uniform housing. Grinding, chroming and polishing is relatively expensive.
3. Many parts are still in production (thanks to the Legend and competitors) makes service and maintenance of this machine possible.
4.Is the machine being overhault? Who has done this and when. In the Netherlands we have only a few specialists. Revision by a hobbyist reduces the value. It should also be a constructed revision from a powder coated frame, otherwise rust will reappear.
5. Has the machine been out of action for quite a long time? In this case the machine can be dismantled actually the best completely.
6. The machine works fine on 230 volts (even a third group machine) Connect the machine always to mains, a rotary pump, after all, does not draw water!
7. It is difficult to give advice for the best price.
8. Are you planning to use the machine professionally? Please installian automatic boiler filling in order to prevent the heating element from boil dry.
9. Let you machine serviced annually by an expert and replace the purifier on time.
Nice to know:
• The number of stars on the back plate would stand for the number of years it was produced after 1961.
• The first series brew groups did not hace an Allen bolt at the front. This hole is added to make the channels of the drilling in more easily.
• Original the E61 had a pressure switch with mercury for the temperature of the boiler. The mercury led the power for the heating element. Often this pressure switch is being removed in the course of the years. Upon revision, we always place a modern pressure switch, it is not allowed to work with mercury anymore.
• Original most E61's had a burner under the boiler in order to heat the boiler with gas. Ideal in Italy as the machine asked too much power. Would you use it again? You are required to let this system checked up annually by a gas technician.
• There are in addition to 1, 2 and 3 and 4 group machines also made even six group machines (very rare!). These six group machines were actually two together-built 3 group machines.