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Doug Ayen

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fixing the triniTea [Feb. 23rd, 2012|10:21 pm]
Doug Ayen
Well, a few days ago a part that opens a valve on my tea maker broke, the offset shaft that pushes up at the valve that lets the hot water down into the brewing chamber snapped off. Tonight I have tried to fix it.

As far as I can tell, it stuck shut due to a buildup of crud around the valve, something I've fixed for now, but I'll keep an eye out for from now on.

A quick check online didn't turn up any parts suppliers or manuals, and if I ever had an owner's manual for this, it's long gone. SO, I emailed the supplier, Adagio Teas. Nope, they don't have parts or know where I could get a replacement either. This is a piece of plastic about 3" long and maybe 3/8" diameter max, it couldn't have cost more than a few cents to make.

A new one costs $99, so time to see if I can actually fix it Fortunately, the right tool for the job, the mill/drill, is up and running again. I drilled out a hole where the old shaft attached and cut up a bit of nail to act as a new offset shaft. Since the plastic was, evidently, prone to breakage, I then used some metal-filled epoxy putty (PC-9) to bed the offset shaft in and reinforce around the junction.

With some luck, it should be ready to use tomorrow. Of course, it may fail on the first use, or just not work due to some oversight, but I've had good luck with this stuff. If it does fail, I'll try harder to find a replacement part, but before I'd spend $99 on a new one, I've got some titanium in the shop that's the right diameter, and a lathe, and I know how to machine an offset . . .

[User Picture]From: dcseain
2012-02-24 05:28 am (UTC)
Seems tubing like that should be easy enough to source.
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[User Picture]From: blackanvil
2012-02-24 05:42 pm (UTC)
Not a tube, but a shaft with an offset protusion:


Sort of like that.
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[User Picture]From: perspicuity
2012-02-24 04:20 pm (UTC)
replace it piece by piece until it's all Ti?

self-color-anodizing? mmm...

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[User Picture]From: blackanvil
2012-02-24 08:51 pm (UTC)
I was looking at the whole machine, since I had it partially apart, and it looks like the next thing to go would be the upper chamber where it heats the water. Not sure why a) that wasn't made of stainless instead of galvanized, and b)if that goes, then I'd just get a replacement.
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[User Picture]From: blackanvil
2012-02-26 07:46 am (UTC)
And, speaking of which, guess what just failed? Looks like I have a patch of rust-through at the valve. I've had this one for, what, 8 years or so? Time re replace it.
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