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Where to buy a new soda machine?


RikaKazak

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Got a rockstar location that's filled with machines (my amusement machines), but the location owner wants a soda machine in addition to what I already installed.  I unfortunately own 0 soda at this time, but because it's such a good location, and I don't want another operator getting his foot in the door, I'm willing to do soda there even if it means I don't really make anything on it just to keep the location owner happy.

 

Question:  Any recommendations on where to buy a soda machine (like which distributor or website to buy through) and which machine should I get?  (he wants standard soda like coke/pepsi, but also wants me to put in Gatorade, red bull, and other random energy type drinks)

 

I've looked through craigslist, but I'll be honest, I don't even know what to look at or look for, so sort of scared to buy a used machine (although over 90% of my machines I buy are used, I just don't know squat about soda)

 

Thanks in advance guys, really appreciate it :D

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Without telling what area you are in there's no way to recommend anyone to you.  As I recall you're in the upper midwest by I'm not sure.  You should look through Craigslist and then post links to the ads you're interested in.  Then we can advise you on the ads you're seeing.  Don't be afraid of a used machine as there are plenty of good ones out there.  Also, don't just "break even" on the soda.  If you can't make a profit then you're prices are too low and/or you're paying to much to the location.  Vending doesn't pay the splits like bulk and amusements do, so don't promise anything until you know what to offer (I'd actually try not offering anything.  Commission should always be the last thing you talk about and should never be brought up by you.

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First of all, you need to tell us where your general location is (or the general location where you'd like a machine). Unlike bulk machines, shipping from a distant distributor can be a bit costly for a vending machine, if shipping is even available.

Secondly, you need to tell us what type of a location it is (is. Office, factory, etc...) And how many people work there ON SITE.

You can lose your golpher by stocking Gatorade and other energy drinks at a slow location and I'm pretty sure it will cost you more than it's worth if the location is really slow, more than your existing profits. Canned drinks such as coke, Pepsi, mountain dew, and so on will be where most of your profits come from. But still, if the location is slow, you're going to find a soda machine to be an annoying thing for you. This does NOT mean a soda machine is 100% a bad idea, it's just something to consider.

Finally, you need to consider finding a local vendor who has no interest in bulk vending but may consider doing soda. Trust me, a lot of full line people don't want to full around with bulk machines.

After you provide this basic information, we can help. And to put it into perspective, a single price can machine has NO bells or whistles but it can do everything you want but Gatorade bottles might be a problem.A single price can vendor such as a Dixie narco 501T will probably run you around $600 from a distributor but prices vary.

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Got a rockstar location that's filled with machines (my amusement machines), but the location owner wants a soda machine in addition to what I already installed.  I unfortunately own 0 soda at this time, but because it's such a good location, and I don't want another operator getting his foot in the door, I'm willing to do soda there even if it means I don't really make anything on it just to keep the location owner happy.

 

Question:  Any recommendations on where to buy a soda machine (like which distributor or website to buy through) and which machine should I get?  (he wants standard soda like coke/pepsi, but also wants me to put in Gatorade, red bull, and other random energy type drinks)

 

I've looked through craigslist, but I'll be honest, I don't even know what to look at or look for, so sort of scared to buy a used machine (although over 90% of my machines I buy are used, I just don't know squat about soda)

 

Thanks in advance guys, really appreciate it :D

I'd PM Feral Vending Mechanic as he's up in Washington.  From what you've described a Dixie Robotic is probably what you're looking for but they're pricey.

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I'm in eastern Washington and northern Idaho.  Spokane Washington is the biggest city that I have machines in and I live right by Spokane.

 

The location is an indoor nerf battle arena.  Basically it's like laser tag, but with nerf guns.  There's a huge area that's set up as an arcade (everything from sit down drivers, to big buck hunter, to pac man, to pool, to air hockey).  I have a cotton candy machine in there already, key master, spiral gumball machine, vendstar, and soon to be sticker machine and this soda.  (also going to put in a claw machine, stacker, and a couple other amusement style machines in 3-6 months time)

 

The other vendor that's in there, I actually share other locations with already.  They're super nice, and only do arcade.  No amusement, no soda, nothing but arcade stuff.  So we get along great, since I do mostly amusement/bulk type stuff.

 

My intention with the soda is to prevent the location from calling a 3rd vending guy, and letting him get his foot in the door.  Cause that might open the possibility of someone trying to compete with my amusement stuff. 

 

They wanted soda for the parents who sit and watch their kids run around with the nerf guns.  And they wanted gatorade for the kids after they're done running around and want to "refuel."  (their words not mine)  Maybe there's a better alternative I could pitch them?  Maybe it'd be better to just get a small soda machine and not do gatorade and hope they don't care? 

 

BUT...even with all that said, I do really enjoy soda, and could certainly see myself getting into it once I get more money, and have more time to locate (or enough money to buy an existing route), so it would be nice to get a machine that I could learn on.  

 

Hopefully all my rambling makes sense...if it doesn't feel free to ask me to clarify more, I'm more then willing to try and explain it all.  I'll be in seattle for the next 3 days so if I don't respond I'm not being rude, just at the zoo with my family ;)  really looking forward to your guy's input.

 

Also I'll post some craigslist ads and see what you guys think when I get back ;)

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From what I've read about your location (I always though it was a movie theater for some reason) it sounds like it's really busy so if there aren't any refreshments for anyone, especially the parents who have the money, then a soda machine should do well there.  Do a nicer machine that is multiprice and can handle bottles and cans because, especially in the summer, there will be demands for Gatorade, etc.  You might even be able to sell water from it.  Doing cans and bottle will get you two price points to attract more sales, but don't duplicate flavors in both sizes.  There should be quite a few ads there for machines as I know a guy who has traveled to Spokane to pick machines up before.

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I'm in eastern Washington and northern Idaho.  Spokane Washington is the biggest city that I have machines in and I live right by Spokane.

 

The location is an indoor nerf battle arena.  Basically it's like laser tag, but with nerf guns.  There's a huge area that's set up as an arcade (everything from sit down drivers, to big buck hunter, to pac man, to pool, to air hockey).  I have a cotton candy machine in there already, key master, spiral gumball machine, vendstar, and soon to be sticker machine and this soda.  (also going to put in a claw machine, stacker, and a couple other amusement style machines in 3-6 months time)

 

The other vendor that's in there, I actually share other locations with already.  They're super nice, and only do arcade.  No amusement, no soda, nothing but arcade stuff.  So we get along great, since I do mostly amusement/bulk type stuff.

 

My intention with the soda is to prevent the location from calling a 3rd vending guy, and letting him get his foot in the door.  Cause that might open the possibility of someone trying to compete with my amusement stuff. 

 

They wanted soda for the parents who sit and watch their kids run around with the nerf guns.  And they wanted gatorade for the kids after they're done running around and want to "refuel."  (their words not mine)  Maybe there's a better alternative I could pitch them?  Maybe it'd be better to just get a small soda machine and not do gatorade and hope they don't care? 

 

BUT...even with all that said, I do really enjoy soda, and could certainly see myself getting into it once I get more money, and have more time to locate (or enough money to buy an existing route), so it would be nice to get a machine that I could learn on.  

 

Hopefully all my rambling makes sense...if it doesn't feel free to ask me to clarify more, I'm more then willing to try and explain it all.  I'll be in seattle for the next 3 days so if I don't respond I'm not being rude, just at the zoo with my family ;)  really looking forward to your guy's input.

 

Also I'll post some craigslist ads and see what you guys think when I get back ;)

Yep, A glass front robotic would fit perfectly in that environment - they're not my favorite machines but they are handy for vending a lot of various drinks which can be problematic in a standard machine, especially Red Bull.  The Bevmax 4 seems to be the favorite but a lot of us, including myself, use the Royal 500-40 with few problems.  The one you'll want avoid is the Vendo Vue (aka Voodoo) as that one's full of bugs.

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From what I've read about your location (I always though it was a movie theater for some reason) it sounds like it's really busy so if there aren't any refreshments for anyone, especially the parents who have the money, then a soda machine should do well there.  Do a nicer machine that is multiprice and can handle bottles and cans because, especially in the summer, there will be demands for Gatorade, etc.  You might even be able to sell water from it.  Doing cans and bottle will get you two price points to attract more sales, but don't duplicate flavors in both sizes.  There should be quite a few ads there for machines as I know a guy who has traveled to Spokane to pick machines up before.

 

I do have a movie theater with cotton candy + keymaster, this nerf battle arena is a new location I just picked up ;) 

 

And thanks for the input guys, super appreciate it.

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I have no idea how a location like that would do.  If there is no concession to speak of, then soda may do well.  Personally, I would avoid getting a glassfront around a bunch of sugared-up kids.  I would think it would be better to simply get a nice used bottle vendor and see how it does.  If it totally kicks butt and you can get away with adding another, then do that.  A bottle-drop glassfront would also work well as it wouldn't cost an arm and a leg but it would have all of the variety you need.  I would still prefer to avoid a glassfront soda machine.

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I have no idea how a location like that would do.  If there is no concession to speak of, then soda may do well.  Personally, I would avoid getting a glassfront around a bunch of sugared-up kids.  I would think it would be better to simply get a nice used bottle vendor and see how it does.  If it totally kicks butt and you can get away with adding another, then do that.  A bottle-drop glassfront would also work well as it wouldn't cost an arm and a leg but it would have all of the variety you need.  I would still prefer to avoid a glassfront soda machine.

Normally I'd agree Chris - but with all those arcade games and cranes, the robotic machines kind of fit the atmosphere better than a straight stacker  (which is what I normally prefer to run)

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I'd look for a Dixie Narco 5591. That lets you offer an assortment of products. Unless you want to get all fancy and stuff. Then maybe a newer 5800.

I think he's looking for a place to buy machines around your area Feral.  I suggested he PM you as I figured you probably knew all the refurbishers (if any) up that way.

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Spokane to Seattle is like LA to San Francisco. Or maybe Fresno.

I realize that you're not next door, but Seattle's a lot closer than anywhere else and I doubt he'll find much in Spokane.

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Fair enough. OP, if you don't have any luck trawling Craigslist, you can always buy from Smitty's in Portland. ( http://www.smittysvending.com/ ) They are pretty pricey, but their machines are fully refurbished. One company I used to work for sold quite a few machines to them. 

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Just my two cents on soda machines in that environment. 

 

If the area is "monitored" and there is some sort of supervision then a glass front bottle drop would be nice. I only bring up the "monitored" aspect because I've had two locations where I've had to install tilt alarms because knuckle heads were tilting the machine back and then dropping it forward and get 3-6 free beverages.

 

I'm a huge fan of the Dixie Narco 501E, can be set up for multiple packages, etc. and they are sooooo easy to work on. Real workhorses. You can also get custom graphics done for the machine to really impress the location.

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