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Thread: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

  1. #1
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    New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi,

    My friend and I are considering starting a casual coffee cart business. Strictly a casual venture, only planning to to do engagement/birthday parties etc. We are willing to spend a little bit of money on a machine (~2.5K), mainly considering that well get to keep it at the end for home use!!

    A couple of considerations that weve been thinking about lately are -

    1. We would potentially be operating at peoples houses that arent set up for >10 amp power. Would this be a problem? From my (limited) understanding, very few 2 group coffee machines operate on 10 amp power, so would we be confined to a one group machine? Do these less power hungry machines operate much worse than the 20 amp machines (we were obviously wanting to steam milk and extract coffee at the same time)?

    2. We were thinking a tank machine, mainly because of compatibility with whatever environment in which we were needed. How easy is it to get hook a pump up from an external water tank replenishing the limited tank on the machine?

    Many thanks,
    Tony.

  2. #2
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    I think there are sponsors on here that hire out coffee carts. I might be wrong but I know I saw them for rent on an australian site so there is a good chance it was a link from the sponsors section. If you can find them talk to them and ask them what setup they have and they might be able to help you out. I imagine most heat exchanger machines will do what you need.

    Does your budget include the grinder and the cost of the cart or just the machine alone?

    btw you can go up to 2400w on 10 amp. You may have read reviews of 10 amp being hopeless on the net. I think in a lot of these cases they were US reviews where they can only pull 1200w off 10 amp.

  3. #3
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Hi Tony and welcome to CS!

    Yes, $2.5k is a little bit of money to spend on a machine. Youll need to double it for something decent that will allow you to serve the guests.

    Then once youve done that, youll need a good, quick grinder. Thats another $2k- $3k.

    All you need then is some sort of mobile frame to set it on and move it, jugs, tampers, pro knock tube, syrups, hot choc, water containers, carpet runner for the floor, insurance, a suitable vehicle to load and move it in, etc. and hey presto youre up and running.

    Your problem isnt the power and water requirements - its what goes with it and the experience you need to handle a crowd that will ALL want their coffee all at once.

    I used to just love the enquiries that. "only wanted to hire me for an hour or so", expecting to pay $100 to serve 150 people.

    It can be fun though - especially when you finally pack up and leave after all the guests are gone, and know you need to drive home and clean all the gear at 1am on a Sunday morning.

    Been there, done that!

  4. #4
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Hi Guys,

    Thanks for the quick replies. The ~$2.5K refers just to the coffee machine. Im fairly confident we have a solution for the other items (if you want to offer advice on grinder we would take it).

    We were planning on using a semi-commercial grade machine. I know this isnt huge but we arent looking to make a huge profit, more just something on the side.

    In regards to the power - if a coffee machine has a 15 or 20 amp plug, how easily can that be used at your standard house which may or may not be set up for >10 amps?

    We were think of having an external water tank, what kind of pump would we use to get the water into our tank machine?

    Thanks again,
    Tony.

    P.S. Please dont crush my dreams.

  5. #5
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Tony, I dont mean to crush your dreams. Just remember, if you go ahead and do this youll be playing with other peoples dreams of making their engagement or 21st a night to remember - for the right reasons.

    If a coffee machine has a 15 or 20 amp plug, its there for a purpose - ie. to heat up the boiler and recover in good time to continue service.

    Something like a 2-group Expobar Ruggero is compact, weighs about 50kg, and uses a 10amp plug. It can pick up water from a 20 litre jerry can mounted in your cart and will do the job. You wont get one for $2.5k.

    As for the grinder, Id suggest a K10.

    If youre serious about it all, send me a pm with what you think you need and what you already have, and I can give you a price.

    Cheers
    Den

  6. #6
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Most houses dont have access to 15 amp (unless they have a spa) and you are running into big issues if you try and plug a 15 amp into a circuit not designed for it (generally forget about 20amp, which isnt needed). As for 2.5 K you wont get a "crowd pleaser" for that amount you will need to double it, and I would back up cuppacoffee with the "its experience that counts". I have used a small boiler 15amp machine and it wouldnt keep up so a 10amp will only do small numbers. I guess it depends on the size of crowds you are looking at for what will work and what wont.

    As for the pump buy a caravan tank with a pump on it, you will need to power it somehow (battery or transformer to go from 240), and you will be away. That said I would go for a plumbed in solution which is easier to use and more pleasing to the eye.



  7. #7
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Ive had a look at the Expobar Rugerro Compact and it looks very nice. How much would one of those cost though? I cant find it anywhere??

  8. #8
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    A quick google search revealed a price of $6600 incl GST for one of these.

  9. #9
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    I believe that is for the non-compact version. If you chose the first link that came up.

  10. #10
    TC
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Hi Tony,

    1 group compact models Elegance - G10 are from $3465 to $4702 retail. The 1 group Ruggero is $4535/$4702 (hi-group).

    2 group compacts from $4730-$5857 with the Ruggero at $5690 and $5857 respectively. Hope that helps....

    A number of CS sponsors sell Expobar commercial and as Dennis of Cuppacoffee (our Sydney agent) mentioned, we can provide pricing and package pricing if you require further information.

    My advice is to get a good, reliable machine ;)

    Chris

  11. #11
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: New Coffee Business, need advice on machine

    Quote Originally Posted by 5758425E59584F5E595245525958360 link=1243922016/8#8 date=1243930728
    I believe that is for the non-compact version. If you chose the first link that came up.
    It was, sorry about that chief, I must have been having a mans look :-[.



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