Home soda fountain with 2-liter bottles?

Many people like the idea of soda fountains, but the official fountains that mix soda and pre-mix concentrate are quite expensive and work to maintain.

To gain some of the convenience and efficiency, how about a quasi-real fountain using existing 2-liter pop bottles? Such a fountain would be designed to look like a regular one. Inside, ordinary 2-liter bottles would be attached. In a "party" model, they would just be in an icebox, in a full-time model it would have refrigeration.

To attach the bottles, their caps would be removed and a special cap screwed on that would have two hoses -- one for pop to come out, and the other for gas (CO2 or air) to come in to push out the drink. A CO2 cylinder could power this, or an air pump if you want battery power. Gravity might be able to do it but pressure certainly could.

The special caps would have another quick connect interface that lets them be turned upside down and snapped into place. Alternately, the bottles could be in another orientation as long as the feed tube can reach their bottom.

You might want to be able to have two bottles of the same drink feed the same fountain to give more capacity and the ability to drain one and then the other so that they can be "hot swapped" (really cold but you know what I mean.) Or people might prefer to be able to offer lots of different drinks, but just 2L of each.

The goal of this design is to be very cheap. The one based on ice and CO2 cartridges would be very cheap and need no power -- more of a party amusement, but also an efficient way to give people only what they need.

Of course you could just empty the bottles into reservoirs, but then you need a way to clean them. Cleaning the tubes could be done with an attachment for a garden hose to flush them, and the caps could go in a dishwasher.

This is my lowest tech idea yet...

in ca a while ago they sold a soda cap that dispensed from the pressure in the bottle. I remember finding that commercial Soda pop is carbonated to about 6 times its volume of CO2, less for some brands and beer type products.

then INVENT the damn thing. I just stumbled on this via google and im all about a cheap soda fountain. You got my email address. Build the thing and drop me a line.

I have such a fountain. It is called a “Servit” fountain. I have had exactly what you describe for about 28 years. The problem I am now having is maintenance and syrup packaged usably. It appears that the syrups now come to be connected to a particular machine. I have to buy that syrup and pour it into the bottles that you spoke of. These “Bag-in-Boxes” syrup is not as neat as the old one gallon jugs that were meant to be poured. These Bin B’s are meant to be pumped.

Just wanted you to know the technology that you spoke of has come and gone. I think that it is still a good idea

SERVIT!! HELP!!!

i have a servit, it just needs some minor repairs, and i am having the absolute WORST time finding someone to work on it for me!!!!!i am in the dallas area, mesquite exactly, about 15 mins from downtown, if there is anyone interested or knows of someone, PLEASE let me know!!!!!! i appreciate any help!!! thanks!!!

servit maintenance

Did you find anyone to work on your servit? I have 10 of them in your same nieghborhood. Jakes refridgeration used to work on them, but I think Jake passed away. Help!

servit

I would like to buy a servit. Do you have one for sale? Thanks.

ok.. will fix it

ok.. will fix it

Sorry...I will fix it for

I have fixed a few of these and have no problem fixing yours...Let me know
Thanks!

servit repair

Are you in the metroplex area? If so, you can work on mine too?

Servit repair

I got my Servit in 1975 and two lines still work. I'm not sure what is wrong with the other two. I would love to have someone come get everything back in working order and tell me where to get my CO2 tank and the syrups (in the jugs not the big box container at Sam's). My e-mail address is above. Please let me know. Thanks.

I have parts and machines as well

Call 214-251-3152 for repairs

SodaClub

Hey everyone,

I just came across this thread and thought id let you all know about sodaclub. (www.sodaclub.com). I really like it, as its very clean and does a great job of carbonating the water. It works in a manner very similar to the one brad described in that it pushes out CO2 via a cylindar directly into a sealed 1L container, causing pressurization and solubility of the CO2. After carbonation, syrup is added to the 1L container and your good to go.

Rob

Soda club

While interesting, it's a lot more work to make a bottle than what I have in mind. They estimate 40 to 50 cents/litre, which is actually more expensive than 2L bottles of non-name-brand pop in the stores, or even the name-brand 2L bottles when on sale. And that doesn't include the cost of their machine or shipping. Canned pop (name brand) is often about 70 cents and on rare specials 55 cents/litre, and unknown-brand is less.

Though I do like the idea that they have a line of part-sugar, part-splenda drinks (Coke C2 is quite good and it's part-sugar, part aspartame.) And for all I know their stuff tastes good.

But you seem to be trading a bunch of work for a minor saving and the freshness.

Soda Club: Convenience

Just saw Soda Club last night at a friends. Extremely easy. Keep water in fridge (in the bottle), pop station on counter. Not sure about a huge cost savings, but surely some. Main savings is lugging pop in from the store week after week, and storing it. They sell the flavors at local boat store, as boaters and RV's (pressed for space) love the convenience of turning water into soda-pop. I like the idea of not creating a lot for the landfill.

How easy?

Their site implies you must

  • Keep clean bottles around and chilled water (or put water in the bottles and chill in that.)
  • Connect up their carbonator
  • Push the carbonation button a fair number of times
  • Keep stocked with their supplies by mail order.

Compare that to “Buy pop on regular grocery trips. Put pop in fridge. Take pop out of fridge and drink.”

And the whole point of the fountain concept, as I was outlining it was the even easier, at parties, “Put glass under fountain. Push button. Fill glass.” Soda Club is not even remotely that.

Very Easy

Don't knock Soda Club until you try it. I have one and love it. Your 'easy' comparison for the invention?

1. You will still need to have clean cups and a way to chill your soda.
2. You will still have to connect the carbonation device to your invention. Soda clubs is attached once per 110 liters of soda.
3. You still have to press a button to dispense your stuff.
4. How will you get your syrup for mixing? I've not found any in stores.

My point is Soda club is nearly what you describe. It works and is easy. When you finish a bottle, rinse and refill with water and stick in fridge. The carbonator is always in the machine, nothing to hook it every time. It takes about 3 minutes, if that, to make soda when I want it.

Just thought you might want to hear from one who uses the machine.

My very simple invention

Had no carbonation device. You bought 2L bottles, screwed them in and were ready to go. Pre-carbonated, just a handy way of dispensing.

Soda Club is more than that, but with more work. It should be cheaper than it is, I would say.

Soda Club

The anonymous Soda Club 'users' or people that have 'seen it' at a friend's house know a whole heck of a lot about it. Why are they hanging around on a forum like this anyway??? Answer: they are probably Soda Club employees looking for new patsies.

Dude, your idea is WAY better and would be WAY cheaper than 'Soda Club'. Give me a break.

Soda Club

I have a Soda Club and I love it. It's so easy my 10 year old can operate it. Nothing tough about it at all. My only complaint is, I'd like brand name sodas. I like being able to control sugar content..that's a good thing.

soda dispenser

Hi, Could you tell me where to find the servit dispenser? I would buy your idea. When are you going to invent it? Thanks

can't believe nobody was able to find this...

http://www.instructables.com/id/ELS4LP8T6YEP306EDN/?ALLSTEPS

Does exactly what you want. I actually hooked this up to my kegerator, but was extremely disappointed. The tubing is too narrow, so a high pressure is needed to push the soda out. It takes ~20 seconds to push 12 oz out, and the dispensed soda is a little flat due to the dispensing process "shooting" out a thin stream of soda into your cup.

If you really want to make this work, you'll have to fashion something like this yourself with larger diameter beverage tubing and maybe a used soda gun off of eBay...

Just what I'm looking for...

I'm definitely thinking about doing something like this. I've built a full wet bar at my place, and the only problem I still have is that it takes too long to take 2L bottles of Coke out of the fridge every time I need to make a Jack & Coke or whatever. I'd want something that looks real instead of a toy bar gun, so I don't mind dropping about $50 on that end, but I have no use for a full commercial bar gun system. Something above that just uses C02 to dispense from 2 or 3 liter bottles stuck beneath the counter would be perfect and very cheap. Please let me know if you make any more progress on this, very interested.

servit

anybody ever find a nice replacement system for the servit system?

Servit machine

I can replace or repair your SerVit machine. Email broparks@gmail.com or call 214-251-3152. I am in Carrollton, Tx and very close to where Booth Manufacturing actually made the original machines. I have the inventory and parts that Jakes Refrigeration had.
Larry

Servit Fountains

I am still keeping mine patched using Home Depot parts but it is still working. I have had this unit since the late 70's and it will be a sad day when I can no longer keep it patched together. I have just had a large number of people over for Thanksgiving and it was wonderful having the fountain up and working. There is of course the "OOOO" factor when you offer someone a fountain soft drink.

We in the Dallas area have to figure a way to "safely" get to know each other. Maybe we then we can keep these Servits limping along until we have them buried with us. I can't find any reference to the Servit system having existed. If I didn't own one I would think everyone was making the system up

Soda Club ???

For those who mentioned Soda Club--I just looked at their products & found one major major flaw (in my opinion) All of their products contain Splenda. This is a horrible horrible product. It almost killed me. Are there any options out similar to Soda Club that don't contain Splenda? Thanks in advance for your help!

Soda Club Machine-Good-Syrups-Awful!

Bought two Soda Club machines for Christmas gifts, which came with samples and two large bottles of syrups. One machine was for our son who still lives with us and drinks pop constantly, and the other was for a son who just bought an motorhome, and the idea was to eliminate the storage problem of storing cases of pop. The machines are great, but both sons hated the syrups. I tasted all of the flavors, and agree with the guy who objects to Splenda...they all tasted as if they had saccharine in them, and I believe artifical "sugars" as those are much worse than natural sugar! Am now searching for a distributor that sells Dr. Pepper, Pepsi and Cola syrups to stock up on those. Had a soda maker years ago we bought from Schwan's and was able to get Cola syrups from the local Pepsi plant, as we didn't like Schwan's back then either, but it's now gone. Did someone say Sam's sells syrup for soda dispensers? Schwan's still sells a cherry concentrate that makes a good cherry soda and it could be mixed with Cola for cherry-cola, but need the "Cola". Would recommend the Soda Club machine, although very expensive, but you will have to find your own syrups.

Plans exist

Just search for 3 Liter Mini-Kegs. Homebrewers use these all the time to carry kegged homebrew with them on the go. There are quite a few sets of plans with pictures and diagrams.

am working on this now

This is an idea I am in the works of creating. Should be able to do the whole thing for less than $275.00 (which is alot less than a "home" system sold for $2800.00!). First, you would need the Kegerator, or minimum the CO2 gas bottle with regulator. Anyway, I found a seven button soda gun, but the important thing here is to find a premix gun, not a post mix gun. This implies that the soda syrup is mixed with carbonated water before it gets to the hoses of the gun. PERFECT! Next, but not necessary, is a cold plate. (this just made things easier in regards to hooking up the hosing. Plus, the bottles can be stored outside the kegerator fridge). A cold plate is a circuit inside an aluminum plate that should be kept cold. This chills the soda just before the gun.
The trick, as mentioned by Brad, is the quick screw on caps for the 2 liter bottles. That is the next hurdle. Also to be made is a manifold for the CO2. these would need a valve for each flavor, for purposed of swapping bottles.
For high volume beverages, simple; put two in series.
If this works (and I don't see why not), I will offer these somehow. I just don't see a home system needing syrup. In fact, the less soda you drink, the better!

Soda Gun

I am thinking along the exact same lines. I recently purchased a premix gun off of ebay. I have a number of 5 gallon homebrew kegs, but don't necessarily need or want 5 galons of soda. I was really hoping to find a cap that had an out line for the soda and an in line for CO2 from my kegerator. I suppose since no one on here has mentioned anything, this cap doesn't exist. I have seen the toy soda guns and the cap on them is exactely what I want but with larger diameter lines and able to hold more pressure.

soda gun system using 2 liter bottles

OK so now I am manufacturing these soda gun kits that use 2 liter bottles. The gun has four buttons, so four flavors. The manifold connects to the bottle (each holds two bottles), and the system hooks up to an existing beer tapper system or dedicated CO2 bottle with regulator. The entire system sells for $399.99 . Very easy system to install, and the manifold is made of stainless steel and food grade plastic, sturdy and made to last a long long time. No tinker toy stuff here. Former tool & die maker so I know what I am doing.

I am setting up an ebay store to sell these, and should be up by May 1st 2009. Of course you can contact me directly bsimmons@wi.rr.com to purchase one. Kit comes with two manifolds, soda gun, valve system (needed to replace a bottle while the rest have pressure), lines and fittings. You would need a regulator and tank. Of course I am not responsible for overpressurizing the system, which one need not come close to. Plus, if using a kegerator or fridge, you would need to drill a hole in the side of the fridge for the soda gun to come out of (unless you use a cold plate).

But the system is very cool. People are absolutely impressed, the bottles change out quickly, and one could hook up two bottles in series for 4 liters of soda. The gun is a real one found in restaurants.

go to this webpage and you can buy a system

if you would like an actual working system made with quality parts, go to
http://www.homesodagun.com
The page is being tuned up. I will add an installation video and other info. Using Paypal for anyone wishing to buy a system. $399.00 for the system. The gun retails for around $250 alone. This is made with quality parts for a long life.
Thanks,

Somthing like this?

Did you originaly mean somthing like this? it is super simple and pretty cheap.
http://www.shop.com/Soda_Carbonation_Saver_Dispenser-92330387-113666035-p!.shtml
I was thinking about building some sort of gravity system like this but with a few bottles maybe inside a cabinet. what did you end up doing?

re:Home soda fountain with 2-liter bottles?

stumbled accross the page while looking for something for my portable bar, I want to be able to dispense soda from a gun, so I'm looking for a simple and easy way to hook up a gun and use 2 or 3 liter bottles. Anyways heres what I found:
http://home.highertech.net/~cdp/3lkeg/3lkeg.htm
And
http://home.swbell.net/bufkin/cheap_3_liter_kegs.htm

Both of the taps are similar, and provide the method of adding pressue while leaving a way to draw the soda out...
Once I get one built (i'll need about a dozen for my bar setup) I'll set up a site for it!

You all overcomplicate a simple idea

A simple stand alone unit that looks very similar to what you might find in a fast food restaurant, using 2 liter bottles, small co2 cans, and a simple bottle lock system similar to a pouring spout for loquor bottles with a pickup hose, and pressure inlet will do the trick. I am just beginning to work on one of these myself. No news on a release yet, very early. Hoping to keep it around $100. Oh yeah, to solve the cold plate problem, I put an aluminum ice bucket on the top, wrap it in copper piping that the soda flows through... Fill it with ice, wait 10 minutes or less... Soda comes out cold. Forget refrigerating the bottles, just keep them close to the ice as well... Just working on my own method for regulating pressure between bottles for quick changes... Also working on a way to possibly recycle some co2 since it is not actually spent during dispensing... Kepp operational cost down...

Sherlock Holmes said that the simplest, most obvious answer is the most likely to be correct... Think about that as you invent, and keep those wonderful minds working!!

Brad, dont use copper tubing

Brad, dont use copper tubing to run your soda through. carbonated soda will react with copper. you could make yourself/family/friends sick. that is why carbonators require a backflow preventor. to prevent the soda from backing up into other home water lines and back into the city water main. use stainless steel/plastic or hose.
need to look up carbonated soda and copper health hazards.

Soda Fountain

I really like you're idea about the soda fountain machine and I am wondering if you possibly make them to sell or if you know a website I could buy one for a cheap price. Sorry to bother you, but it would make an amazing birthday present for someone I know.

Thanks.

Alternative to SodaStream and other solutions here

If you have a 22oz paintball tank (which can be filled at Sports Authority's 450 stores nationwide for $3.50), you can use it to make and fully carbonate 220 single-serving sized 12oz soft-drinks, or 440 12oz beers (less carbonated). All you need is...
a co2 dispenser http://s947.photobucket.com/albums/ad318/MikeSpiker/CustomCaps/?action=v...
a bottle cap with a valve http://s947.photobucket.com/albums/ad318/MikeSpiker/CustomCaps/?action=v...
and here's how http://s947.photobucket.com/albums/ad318/MikeSpiker/Downstream%20Hardwar...

You can make this yourself, if you're feelin' froggy.

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