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Market went absolutely crazy busy over the weekend. To elaborate a bit further - this pop-up was at an outdoor Christmas Tree market. First day open was on Thursday - so this was the first full weeken

Thanks all for your thoughts and experiences. I've decided to go down the track of taking along whole beans and grinding to order. First day is tomorrow - then again on Saturday. Funny you should ment

That's a tricky one without hind site/experience (of your actual venues)... What is the "overhead" of coping with grinding "on-demand" vs the "risk" of losing through wastage? Presumably (as

@Richard the First - Not fully sure what you are asking. Are you talking just at farmers markets or enjoying the AeroPress in everyday live?

@RDC8. Hi Rodney, Mixed if honest. I was told at the end that the footfall was a lot less than normal. Lots of people were just looking and not buying. That saying I also didn't get time (or money) to get proper advertising so I think people were confused what I was selling. So between 10-3 I only had 6 customers who bought coffee beans bags and 3 of them were friends who needed a refill and visited me on the day. Also sold some coffee to an elderly couple from London who were down here on hols. If that was it would have been a very quiet day. What helped ticking over the day was selling coffee. I sold for £1 for an 8oz cup. For this I had my moccamaster and it was brilliant. Brewing 1l / 60g of coffee at a time and have 4 different coffees on the go. Didn't bring in as much as the coffee beans, but certainly helped keep the day ticking over. Also hoping I get a few more orders through it since a few people took the business cards. Even one of the vendors whose husband forgot to bring coffee bought 5 cups during the day and said she'd buy some online. The general feedback was that the coffee tasted good via the moccamaster. My thoughts for the next event:

1. Don't bring down 4 coffees. Think 3 max (even 2). The best selling coffee was the Ethiopian "organic wushwush", simply because it was organic. People are interested in environmentla bagging and having the idea of drinking organic coffee. That's why I got 2 samples from Falcon since I would like to replace the Wushwush when it runs out. The second one was the Brazilian since it was the strongest one I had.

2. Don't take too much stock. I bought down lots of brewing equipment, which none sold. Only for Christmas gift sets.

3. Pre-ground coffee for the moccamaster instead of grinding 60g when needed. I am planning to grind 300g in the morning to save time, noise and make things less stressful.

4. Get my advertising sorted out.

 

Hope that helps.

Phil.

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@Dartmoor Coffee - thanks for sharing the experience. The first one is always a bit hairy - but it sounds like you did make a good impression on those who tried your coffee on the day.

 

Hopefully you will get some follow-on orders from those who took away your cards. Did you offer a unique discount? I found that was a good measure of impact as I could track the usage of the code(s) directly back to the market.

It's good that you have a few things to try differently next time. Were you just using the one Moccamaster to manage the 4 different coffees? What did you do with each coffee once it was brewed? 

 

Hope the next market is busier for you and that the overall footfall picks up.

 

 

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@RDC8 Hi Rodney, No offers. Didn't think about that - perhaps I should have. Had so much going on and organising. Hopefully next time it will be easier since items bought so less to do. Yes maybe a FoodFair10 coupon for online buying.

Yes just using the 1 Moccamaster. Bought 4 of these https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/122701375546, but disappointed with them since seemed to quickly loose their heat. Will do some more testing I think. The blurb says 6 hours for most heat, but coffee coming out lukewarm way too quickly.

Next market is June, but not sure I can do. Do you handle markets by yourself? Seems a lot to do if just 1.

How many do you do a year? Seems you need to do quite a few to make it financial viable when you have a lot of costs.

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Well, looks like our local council has finally given the green light for outdoor markets to resume so I'm provisionally booked in for a market on 22 May. So much to do and so little time!

This time I'll be by myself so everything needs to run like a well oiled machine. No onsite power unfortunately so I will need to take some pre-ground retail bags with me. @Dartmoor Coffee - I have two vacuum jugs like yours so am hoping they will hold the heat. Did you pre-warm them (with boiling water) before adding the coffee? I imagine if they were cold to begin with then they would tend to suck heat out of the coffee until the lining had warmed up. I can currently take 8l of hot water in two air-pots to make up samples in a french press.

For me, most of the costs are fixed; gazebo, weights, signage, tables, etc so I wouldn't expect the first market to cover all of the fixed/set-up costs. My next market stall will cost £40 so I need to sell around 3kg (12 bags) in order to cover the direct variable costs (green coffee + bag/label cost) and the stall rental. After that it all goes towards those set-up cost.

(Let's not factor in my time as a cost - that would be too depressing! Less than minimum wage I would think!!)

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Hi @RDC8, No I didn't pre-heat the flasks. Maybe that would have helped? Guess if you pre-heat the flasks you need to somehow get rid off the hot water before adding the coffee. Be interesting to see if that makes a difference.

I don't envy you doing a market still without electrics. Something that I would find essential. Although my next market if I go for it is in mid-June and that will be by myself. Not looking forward to that, but unfortunately wife has a pre-engagement.

A wage? What's that 😃.
 

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@Stevebee I am starting to think I might need to go down this route. My grinder is a Mahlkonig Guatemala; it appear to pull about 600w max at start-up and then settles at around 160-200 watts once under way. So i'm thinking a 1000w inverter like this: https://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Products/SK652104.html?source=adwords&ad_position=&ad_id=315107931576&placement=&kw=&network=u&matchtype=&ad_type=&product_id=SK652104&product_partition_id=987624279487&campaign=shopping&version=finalurl_v3&gclid=CjwKCAjwhMmEBhBwEiwAXwFoEXJ1ffRfmsAAjYNJwffnXqYUgHSvAeduiNY0EPRArGrwaXjGGbsy7RoC9hMQAvD_BwE

 

and a leisure battery like this: https://www.halfords.com/motoring/batteries/leisure-batteries/halfords-leisure-battery-hlb700-682063.html

Would be sufficient?

I could also hook up the bag sealer which draws around 40w

 

 

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I think the issue with the grinder is the start up charge. Previously, I used a Mazzer Royal, 900W, with a 1000/2000W inverter and it worked fine. I think the initial surge is double what the rated is but not sure. That’s why, when I used it for the R120 I over specced. The grind time is minimal as its only when you grind for bags so the battery should last. I have access to power now as I sell hot coffee as well so haven’t used that set up for a while. Don’t pre grind as everyone wants different grind sizes although cafetiere will be by far the most popular.

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After some further research I think I'm closer to getting this set up in time for the market. 

There seems to be a wide range of "generic" chinese branded inverters on ebay; just wondered if anyone reading this has had any particular quality issues with their inverter. (although I suspect the bulk of the global supply is manufactured in China and then branded accordingly!)

 

Then there is the question of the battery specs. Is there a quick way to find out how long a given battery will last given an estimated power draw? I was also thinking of adding a brewer - such as a Moccamaster (element rated at 1,250w but wouldn't be working continuously). Crazy idea??

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1 hour ago, RDC8 said:

Then there is the question of the battery specs. Is there a quick way to find out how long a given battery will last given an estimated power draw? I was also thinking of adding a brewer - such as a Moccamaster (element rated at 1,250w but wouldn't be working continuously). Crazy idea??

Some things to consider especially depending on whether the inverter is cheap or expensive:

  • Inverters can use 20-25W when not running any load, unless that can sleep until required
  • They are not 100% efficient the best might be 95% others 80%
  • For a seemingly insignificant output the amperage draw on the battery can be very large
  • Deep Cycle Leisure batteries really shouldn't be discharged below 50% if you want a decent life out of them (e.g. 200 charge cycles). Many inverters will suck em way below that and your battery might last less than a year
  • Some inverters will trip out way before you expect them to, or overheat
  • Square wave inverters can be are less efficient with inductive loads and make motors run rough and hot.

https://www.halfords.com/motoring/batteries/leisure-batteries/yuasa-active-leisure-battery-l26-agm-466918.html

read the spec above...total moonshine, mathematically almost  correct, but not right. The two statements about charge cycles and capacity are mutually exclusive. Firstly you will be lucky to suck all 90 amps out of it..most inverters will cut out long before then due to the voltage drop on the battery under load at a low state of discharge. If you could get almost 90amps out of it...which you won't..your battery could be dead in weeks.

  • If a deep cycle leisure battery has a capacity of 100 amps...then the theoretical maximum is 100X12V = 1200W
    • as you should only discharge to 50%, this becomes 600W
    • if you add up to 20% efficiency losses this becomes 480W
    • so you can run a continuous 500W load for about 1 hour.
    • if you want to pull it down to 60-65%, then you half its life from 200 recharge cycles to under 100, pullin it down further than this gives it a very uncertain life.

This makes the leisure battery you linked to look positively terrible for the application.

    • Typical performance curves for good quality leisure batteries

500W capacity on a grinder might be 200W per grind cycle of 10 seconds per double shot..or 900 18g grinds to use 200W. You can mostly discount the startup load as it's very brief (but of course the inverter must be sized to handle it). So probably will get 800 grind cycles out of it.

If you add a moccamaster...to draw 1250W when it's heating would pull 108 amps (I've added 4 amps for inverter inefficiencies) from a 12V battery (that's a LOT!)...If you happened to grind whilst this was happening, that's another 20 amps.....on top. These loads may be transient, but the leisure battery won't appreciate having that sort of current pulled, especially as the charge state gets low (and the inverter may just cut out for low voltage.

 200 Ah non AGM leisure battery will be around £200 and £300 for an AGM version

The other way to go if you wanted to run a moccamaster, would be to use 2 leisure batteries and a 24V pure sine wave inverter....this would greatly reduce the amperage loading on the batteries, fewer losses and allow the use of 2 cheaper leisure batteries.

P.S. If a battery fails, in many cases you can hook up the remaining battery and use the inverter in 12V mode (depending on inverter).

 

Edited by DavecUK

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Thanks for this very comprehensive explanation @DavecUK. Lots to take in and certainly food for thought.

 

At this stage I think I will drop the idea of trying to use a moccamaster and just take hot water in airpots to make up french press. This will be mainly for tasting samples. If the water cools too much before the market finishes then so be it.

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You could get a Gas Burco 20 litre....run off a smallish propane cylinder (say a 15kg perhaps)

https://www.ceonline.co.uk/burco-manual-fill-gas-water-boiler-20ltr-mfgs20ss.html?gclid=CjwKCAjw7diEBhB-EiwAskVi16Z4KCZusRCfz7dBYxI7SrkLRETm7pAHdsAU_TfuYcQX609RZSHadRoC-1UQAvD_BwE

Edited by DavecUK
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Just a practical note apart from having to cart all this around elsewhere - how often are you going to need to use this? You are going to have to do lots of markets (where power is not available) and sell lots of coffee to make it viable and cost effective.

I'm no expert on this subject, but would it be best to hire such equipment or maybe hire a petrol generator for the day?

 

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