These beautiful and tactile wooden steam knobs are custom designed and produced by us, using the same supplier for the wood as our portafilter handles.
The fitting of these knobs is the same as the standard plastic knob - they simply push on, and are retained by a sprung D style mount. As such they can be pushed on, and pulled off when/if required - just like the original knob. There is nothing permanently fixed, and no unsightly grub screws to work loose and need retightening or other fixings to worry about.
- Diameter: approx 34mm tapering to 32mm (as per the original plastic knob)
- Length: approx 35mm (as per the original plastic knob)
- Material: Wooden (see options for individual woods),plastic mount and sprung steel spring.
- Supplied as shown, with spring fitted.
As the wooden knobs are a natural product, the graining and colour of the wood can differ slightly from that shown. Hence it is possible to have variances in the wood graining and staining. Also whilst we try hard to protect the wood from any damage, as they are commercially manufactured wooden handles they may occasionally have small imperfections - though this obviously doesn't impact performance.
If you order both a wooden handled portafilter AND a wooden handled steam knob of the same type of wood, within the same order - we will make best endeavours to match the grain and colouration of the handle and knob as well as possible at the time and given the stock available. NOTE that our current walnut knobs are typically a darker stain than our current walnut portafilter handles.
We now have walnut, white ash, wenge, oak and olive knobs - but if you would like us to have other types of wood as well, then please drop an email to email@example.com and let us know your preference. If enough people want them, then we'll get other types.
OLIVE: These are split into two types of Olive; either "Olive" (where we select knobs that have some reasonable character and visible grain) and "Boring Olive" (which are olive wood, but have very little or no dark visible grain and are much plainer than the regular Olive. The gallery photos show some examples of what these could look like.). All Olive products are obviously made from a natural substance and the grain and character of the olive products can vary quite considerably.
OAK: Due to the coarse grain and the nature of oak, the grain on the knobs is often very tactile and obvious, and almost 'rustic' - hence oak knobs do NOT have an entirely smooth surface finish, it varies due to the grain.
INSTALLATION: As with the standard plastic steam knob, our wooden steam knobs use a sprung D shaft fitment. It is important that the knob is fitted in the correct orientation with respect to the flat and curved sides of the shaft - and whilst it is slightly more obvious with our knob than with the standard one, they both fit in the same way: the FLAT part of the steam valve shaft should be fitted against the flat plastic part of the socket; and the flat metal spring within the knob should be fitted against the CURVED side of the shaft. Fitting requires very firm pressure, to push the knob on initially. ALWAYS check that the flat metal spring is within the steam knob (our wooden one or the standard Gaggia one) before fitting.
Note that the Gaggia Classic RI9403 has a slightly different steam knob, that externally looks similar to this - though it includes plastic end-stops within the knob. This wooden steam knob doesn't have the same end stops, but will fit the RI9403 plastic steam valve shaft, though it is usually necessary to remove the metal spring from within the wooden steam knob to do so.
Olive wood care and maintenance: Most of our wooden products have a varnished finished, though the olive wood products are special and have an oiled finish - which typically benefits from periodic maintenance in order to enhance the appearance and feel of the grain, prevent any issues with cracking and increases the longevity of the wood. As required, the olive wood should be lightly reoiled with food grade mineral oil (not olive oil or vegetable oil as this won't usually dry) - we find that very lightly sanding the handle with a very fine sandpaper before applying oil can also help the oil to be absorbed and makes the surface super-smooth after application. Ensure the wood is dry and dust free by rubbing with a dry cloth, and then simply pour a little food grade mineral oil onto a cloth and rub this into the surface of the wood, leave it to dry for 10-15 minutes, the reapply - and after a further 15 minutes use a dry paper towel or cloth to remove any excess oil. That's it!