Coffee in the Machine?

Written by Geoff Richards

June 14, 2005 | 09:55

Tags: #case #casemod #coffee

Companies: #ebay #mod #toms-hardware

Everyone has heard the Tech Support stories about people using their CD-ROM drive tray as a cupholder for their morning coffee - René G. from Munich, Germany has gone one better and modded an entire coffee machine into a old server case.

The project should not be confused with the various coffee-flavoured mini PCs made by Saint Song Corp of Taiwan: their Espresso and Cappuccino boxes have been around for years, while the Latte claims to be the world's smallest P4 system - certainly a Grande feat indeed.

I personally don't drink coffee, so I will leave the excitement to Frank Völkel from Tom's Hardware: "René G.'s system is configured to allow eight different products to be programmed. Several attributes can be adjusted, including the amount of coffee and water, the tamping pressure, and whether or not the coffee grounds should be moistened prior to brewing."

There is no actual PC inside, but that doesn't mean the system lacks speed: it can churn out a cuppa every 40 seconds, which Völkel points out equates to 2,160 cups per day, assuming a constant stream of coffee beans. Maybe Multiplay should borrow it for next week's 1,000-player i24 LAN event!

René G. claims his machine makes sumptuous coffee or espresso and outperforms high end machines from Jura or Saeco costing up to $1,500. Without wanting to pour sour milk in his espresso, I would certainly hope so: the project took him over 80 hours to complete, and is built from industrial components bought through eBay to the tune of $3,000.

If you're wondering why he didn't just buy an off-the-shelf machine, strip it and build it into the case, remember the famous speech President John F. Kennedy never made: "We choose to mod these components, not because it is easy, but because it is hard."

THG have a funky 2.5 minute video of the machine in action, and it's worth the download just to see how the inside of a coffee machine works.

Discuss over a cuppa?
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