Being of Italian ancestry and growing up in South America, I remember having one of those around the house since ever. My nonna had one for 40+ years, the only damage was a broken handle (and of course you must replace the rubber rings when they wear out), so they are excellent quality. Having seen, and being fascinated as a kid with the coffee spluttering out, it being used nearly everyday during my childhood and teen years I knew exactly how to use it and it makes the "real" coffee I'm used to. It's nearly fool proof after you learn the water/coffee rate - use an espresso cup to measure the water he first few times, and put more/less coffee according to the number of cups and strength you prefer, you don't need to fill the filter to the brim all the time, only if you like extremely strong coffee or making the full 6 cups (I use 3/4 tank of water, 1/2 full filter of strength 5 coffee for a large mug of coffee/latte). Use filtered/mineral water if possible, a decent quality coffee, put on a medium heat and take a bit of time as it's not as quick as other machines, but the taste it's completely different, much richer, and very very hot. Remember to rinse (just rinse, no washing up liquid, use paper towels to dry/wipe any residues) and fully dry the machine when it's cooled down and should last you for generations.