Your input much appreciated. Designing new machine


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Feb 27, 2008
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I was recently assigned a new project to design a coffee brewer for a brand wanting to gain a bigger footprint in this industry. I have done some research and I think I have found a niche that would suit many busy couples nicely.

The machine will be a his and her grind and brew machine. Instead of a carafe there will be two matching (12-14oz) thermal travel mugs. Instead of one hopper, there will be three removable hoppers (2 for beans, and 1 for already ground beans). The machine will be fairly small and have a footprint no wider than 10 inches.

Some other added features include:
-a removable water reservoir
-warming plate
-backlit LCD display for programming and clock
-water filter
-reusable goldtone filter

We are also experimenting with the option to maybe to swap out the filter to fit a 62mm pod in there. Easy to remove shoot, hoppers, and filter basket will make cleaning a breeze as well.

Of course none of the above is finalized so there is a lot of room for change/improvement. The benchmarks we were given were the Cuisinart 700bc/900bc and the Krups KM700. I've read some concerns about the longevity of a grinder/brewer. It will be a burr grinder and the build quality will definitely be superb. The brand is a quality brand and this will be priced very competitively.

So... what features are important for everybody? What do you want in your coffee maker? What''s wrong with the machines you use now? What can I add or take away from the above?

Thanks in advance for viewing.

What's the point of having a hot plate if your going to use thermal mugs. 2 bean dispensers are nice but 3 is starting to get complicated. If you look at most super auto's they always have a place to add ground coffee to the group. I would look at that as an option long before I have people store ground coffee in the machine.

Where most coffee brewers fail is on water delivery, spray head design, and temperature control. Keep your water at 200F - 203F. Design away to deliver a constant water stream much like a gravity fed system. Soak all the grounds at once, much like one of those rain shower heads.

I think the biggest problem with most consumer machines on the market today is that the manufacture is trying to provide more bells and whistles and less machine. Its like modern day computers. They provide tons of software and add on peripherals but what's inside the box is nothing but outdated or underpowered hardware. So the computer is pretty much worthless in a year or so.
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thanks for your input. Your thoughts are definitely helpful. What super auto's are you referring to? thanks again

Almost all have a chute for adding ground coffee but doubles as the mechanism for adding a cleaning tablet for cleaning the group chamber. Look at Capresso or a Solis. On the higher end scale look at a Nuova Simonelli Microbar.