Homebrew Espresso Maker Modding With Gaggiuino

A Gaggia classic espresso machine with an LCD screen attached to the top, sitting on a table with vase of yellow lily flowers to its left and sunlight coming in from a window from the right.

For those that don’t know, Gaggia is a company that produces a line of affordable “entry-level” espresso coffee makers that offer good quality consumer espresso machines at reasonable prices. The entry level machines don’t offer fine grained control over temperature, pressure and steam which is where the Gaggiuino project comes in.

A schematic of the Gagguino project

The Gaggiuino project is an “after market” modification of many espresso makers, such as the Gaggia classic and Gaggia classic pro. The main additions are a MAX6675 thermocouple module paired with a K-Type thermocouple sensor for closed loop control over the temperature. Options for adding an AC dimmer module that attaches to the pump motor and a 0 Mpa to 1.2 Mpa ranged XDB401 pressure sensor, installed in line between the pump and the boiler, provide further closed loop control over the pressure and flow profiling.

Load cells can be attached to the drip tray to allow for feedback about the pour weight with a Nextion 2.4″ LCD touchscreen provides the user interface for profile selection and other interactivity. The project offers a “base” modification using an Arduino Nano as the microcontroller, in line with its namesake, but has an option for an STM32 Blackpill module that can provide more functionality beyond the scope of the Nano.

The Gaggiuino project is open source with code and extensive documentation available on GitHub. There is also a Discord community for those wanting help with their build or that have the inclination to share their passion for DIY espresso modding with the Gaggiuino. Espresso machine hacks are a favorite of ours and we’ve featured many projects on espresso machine builds and mods ranging from PID control of classic espresso makers to beautifully minimal closed loop homebrew espresso machines.

Thanks to [Chempy] for the tip!

8 thoughts on “Homebrew Espresso Maker Modding With Gaggiuino

    1. Espresso is defined by the apx 9 bars of pressure used to force water through a finely ground bed of coffee. Turkish coffee also uses very finely ground coffee (often finer than espresso), but because there is no high pressure involved it’s not espresso. Cowboy espresso is a fairly decent moniker for turkish coffee though because it’s brewed similar to the cowboy style and uses fine grounds.

        1. Depends on the area, but usually it’s “Greek Coffee” in both if you are asking for it from a public vendor. I’ve seen extended family indeed call it just coffee, with “Nescafe” being the other style offered, e.g. “Do you want a coffee or Nescafe?”

          It’s also really interesting the dichotomy around how people refer to the Turkish occupied area of Cyprus. Older generations mostly refer to it still as Turkish occupied, not sure about younger generations but I do know they are more “accepting” of it being Turkish occupied. Turks in that area, if they know you are Turkish do call it Turkey, but will refer to it as Northern Cyprus to just about anyone else. It was fun watching the woman at the info booth have to catch her tongue a few times while telling us about various attractions “around Tu–Northern Cyprus.”

  1. The project is not open source, but instead follows a non-commercial creative commons license. This aligns with neither the OSI’s definition of open source nor the FSF’s definition of free software. There was even a note created on GitHub: https://github.com/Zer0-bit/gaggiuino/issues/431

    I would request a small update to correct it to “source available” as those expecting to use this project according to the freedoms of open source and/or looking for an open source espresso machine will be disappointed.

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