Coffee Vending Machine
Coffee Vending Machine Frequently Asked Questions

Vending Machine

Different manufacturers will have different formulations. The overall consistency of the powder premixes will differ from one manufacturer to another. Some powders are more compact while others are less loosely packed. This is the reason why the final taste of the new brand of coffee may either be stronger or lighter than its predecessor. The solution is to CALIBRATE the vending machine every time you change the brand or flavor of your powder.
Note: For calibration, please refer to the section about CALIBRATION.
After running for some time, the actual output of the machine may vary due to tear and wear of its mechanical parts. That’s why the flavor of the drink may vary adversely. To correct this problem, it is necessary to conduct calibration either routinely or whenever there is a change in the output flavor.
Note: For calibration, please refer to the section about CALIBRATION.
Since we are in the free market, competition plays a very important role here. Anyone who has the know-how and capital can market their own brand of products. What dictates the pricing will be the following factors. Firstly, the cost of production will determine how much the manufacturer will sell its product. Normally, higher selling price is the result of higher cost of production. Secondly, the name recall of the product also plays an important role. More popular brands command higher selling price
First, is it FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved? This is very important since the health of the consuming public is of utmost importance. Second, the taste is also very important. It makes no sense if the product is safe but not good tasting! Third, the price of the product follows. It should meet the first 2 criteria and should be as affordable as possible. In these trying times, every peso counts a lot! And lastly, as a matter of personal choice, does the product contain artificial ingredients and preservatives? Always make it a habit to read the label. If there are ingredients that do not sound familiar to you, you may Google search for its meaning. Some manufacturer makes use of artificial ingredients like sweeteners (e.g. Aspartame, Sucralose, Acesulfame K) either to enhance the taste or lower the cost of production.
Looks can be deceiving. Generally, a well packaged product will draw more attention thus encourages consumer to try it. But by the end of the day, if the product is not good tasting, people will eventually stop buying such product. Elaborate packaging increases cost of production. For vending machine consumption, once the powder is open and put into the machine, the packaging foil is thrown away. What is more important here is that the product is well protected by good packaging material. Elaborate packaging is only secondary. What matters most is its taste and good shelf live.
You are right. These coffee vending machines are indeed sophisticated and intelligent equipments. They can be programmed to sell each cup of coffee at a predefined selling price. You can sell each cup either at P5 or P10 or P15. You can also program it to dispense drinks totally free of charge especially if they are being deployed inside offices where coffee drinks are offered free to their employees by the management. They can also be programmed in such a way that it would not dispense paper cup each time they dispense the drinks. This is very ideal for office use where everyone has his/her own cup. In this way, the operator saves cost by eliminating the need to buy paper cups. These machines also has built-in computer to keep track of total cups dispense since the first day they became operational. Such feature is very useful if the operator wants to keep track of the total inventory of sales on a daily basis especially if he is hiring someone to look after the machine.
Since the water is heated to around 85-95 °C, this actually helps in killing any microorganisms that may be present in the water. And since the water you are using comes from your local water district, it is potable and safe to use for human consumption. There is no problem with this. You are right, in doing so, you will be able to save up to 20 centavos per cup. The reason why your supplier may void your warranty if you use tap water is because of the issue of water hardness. (For detailed discussion of “hard water or water hardness”, you may Google search the topic). All tap water supplied by local water districts in almost every municipalities in the whole Philippines come from underground. For Metro Manila, the water supply comes from dams that store water from rain. Rain water is nature’s supply of distilled water. Distilled water are “soft” water, which is the opposite of “hard water”. For water coming from underground, it contains a lot of minerals (i.e. Calcium and Magnesium). As water flows and passes through embedded rocks underground, it comes into contact with them and carries with it significant amounts of calcium and magnesium salts. Water that contains a lot of calcium and magnesium salts is called “hard water”. This “hard water” causes no harm to humans, but the presence of calcium and magnesium minerals causes a whitish substance called “scale” to deposit on boiling utensils like kettle and with the case of vending machine, its boiler’s heating element. Long term boiling or heating of “hard- water” results to accumulated “scale” deposit on the heating element of the vending machine’s boiler, thus reducing its heating efficiency, eventually leading to its failure. It is this failure of the boiler caused by the use of tap water that voids the warranty. It is a choice yours to make. Save on water cost but pay for the boiler once it breaks down. You can do the math and compare which method will help you save more money with the operation of the vending machine. Please see Pictures 1 and 2 below for comparison between water kettle without and with hard water scale deposit. Picture 3 is an example of highly scaled coffee machine boiler that broke down due to using tap water (hard water) supplied by local water district.


Fortunately, yes and yes! As part of our continuous dealer support, we understand the situation our dealers are in. We get feed backs from them and always try our best to come up with a solution to every problem that they may encounter. We have developed a vending machine boiler cleaning powder that operators can use to arrest the build up of scale deposit from heating “hard water” . Only 1 pack of 80grams cleaning powder every month will keep the scale deposit in control. By routinely cleaning the boiler only once a month, you get to continue to save on water cost without the fear of voiding your vending machine’s warranty.
It is very affordable. It costs only P60/pack. For only P60 a month, you get to continue with the use of tap water and save extra 20 centavos per cup without the fear of voiding the machine’s warranty.


Calibration

Calibration is a procedure that is undertaken to make sure that the equipment is performing within the working specification. This means if the machine is well calibrated, it will give the performance it is expected to deliver.
This is the reason why every coffee machine should be calibrated individually before they are sold out to dealers like you. Majority of the suppliers believe that each machine behave and perform just like the others. But the fact is, each machine is unique and behave differently even if they are of the same brand and same model. Assuming that all the machines will behave the same way and one setting fits all machines is VERY VERY WRONG!! Given the example above, the machine produces 80 cups per kilo instead of 100 cups. This translates into 20 cups of unrealized profit for every kilo of powder consumed. If each cup earns a net profit of P2.00, and the dealer sells 100 cups daily, then in one month’s time, the dealer loses a total of about P1,200.00 in net profit! (P2.00 x 20 cups x30 days =P1,200.00).
Good question. One way to make sure that your supplier knows how to calibrate is to ask them for the calibration report that comes with the machine. In such report it must contain the equivalent number of cups produced per kilo of the powder used by the machine at the given powder setting. With this report, you can easily validate for yourself after running 3 kilos of powder and getting the average number of cups produced with these 3 kilos. The cups yield that you get must be at least within 10% as compared to the numbers provided in the calibration report.
If the supplier cannot provide a calibration report of the machine that you buy, it’s either he doesn’t know how to calibrate or doesn’t want to calibrate, since calibration needs time and would add to his operating cost. Changing the settings by increasing or decreasing the powder settings according to your taste is plain guessing. There is no way you can tell how many cups you can produce with one kilo of powder. You can get this number only after you have consumed the whole 1 kilo. For example, if you got 75 cups for 1 kilo at 2.2 powder setting, what must be the correct setting for the machine to produce 100 cups with 1 kilo? 2.1, 2.0, 1.9, 1.8, or what? If there is no calibration report, you will have to consume 1 kilo first just to get the cup yield, then go to your next “guess” setting, then wait for that other kilo to be used up and so on until you have reached your ideal setting. Can you afford to do this? With calibration report, just one setting will lead you to the correct output. This is supposed to be scientific and not purely guess work.
It is not surprising that none of the suppliers you talked to cannot give you an answer regarding the issue with calibration. They are just traders that buy and sell the vending machines. They are not aware that the vending machine is a high precision machine that needs to be calibrated. Any equipment that delivers a particular product that involves units of measurements such as kilos, no. of cups per kilo served, number of liters, etc needs calibration in order for it to serve the quantity accurately that it is expected to deliver. Just like in the case of fuel pumps at the gasoline stations, or the weighing scales at the wet market, DOE (Department of Energy) or DTI (Department of Trade and Industry) field personnel conducts routine equipment calibration checks to determine the accuracy of such equipments respectively.
The settings for each vending machine is unique just like the finger prints of each individual person. The quantity output at a given setting in one machine is different for the same setting with other machine even if it is of the same brand and model. We arrived at this conclusion based on the actual data that we gathered from calibration reports of all the machines that we sold. A comparative analysis report is given below to show 3 extreme samples of 3 models each of the same brand and model. In the report it is very clear that given the same setting, the variation may reach as high as 30-40%!

Let’s take the sample of Sapoe Brand Model SC-8703. For the one with serial no. of 2012043266 (blue shade), the ideal powder setting is at 2.5. This 2.5 is the value that we get after the machine is calibrated. At 2.5 powder setting, the machine will produce 101 cups for every kilo of powders (1 kilo = 1000g. 1000g/9.96g per cup = 100.5 cups, rounded off to 101 cups). If we use the same setting of 2.5 and set the other sapoe model with serial no. 2012092537 (orange shade), then the actual output will be at 72 cups. This is equivalent to a difference of 29% (a difference of 29 cups per kilo) !! But if we do the calibration, we can easily determine that the ideal setting for the latter unit (serial no. 2012092537) should be 1.8 for it to produce 100 cups and not 72 cups. The same is applicable to the other two brand/models. The examples given above are extreme results - meaning these representative samples are chosen because of their big difference in setting value. In actual, there are models that have very similar behavior. But without calibration, there is no way that we can determine the actual setting of each unit. It can easily be concluded based on actual calibration that even vending machines of the same brand and model can vary significantly as high as 40%! This is why it is very important to calibrate each machine since each one has its own behavior. There should be no guess work when there is a more scientific way of doing it!
Good question again! With the knowledge and understanding of the concept of calibration, this opens up to a whole new dimension of applications! The machine can be calibrated to dispense virtually any kind of powdered drinks customized for use with vending machines. A good example will be medicinal coffee drinks, like 5 in 1 or 8 in 1 coffee, or coffee with other food supplements. With calibration, you can adjust the powder and water setting to your specific requirement. For example, you can program the machine to deliver exactly 20 grams of the powder with 240 mL of hot water; or 15 grams of powder for every 180 mL of hot water, etc. The application is limitless!
You can avail of this calibration service at Windsor Computer Center. It is very affordable and can be availed in 2 ways.
1. Just pay P100 per flavor. If you have 3 canisters, you need to pay P300.
2. Get free calibration for 1 flavor for every 5, 6, and 20 Kilos of WCC, Injoy, and Barista Choi powders purchased at Windsor Computer Center respectively. Such offer begins on April 8, 2013.
Note: Every calibration comes with a calibration report. The data presented in the report will serve as your guide for quick flavor adjustment and a way for you to validate if the predicted number of cups will match with the actual output of your machine.

For additional info, please inquire at Windsor Computer Center at 7 Evangelista St., Batangas City, at Tel. Nos. 043 7236724 9845377 3001725.