Last step in the project of building a home soda machine for flavoring cola

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After this thread yesterday I happened to be in a supermarket where they sell the SodaStream machine and products. Ahye Karumba! What a joke! Like many of you, I've heard the ads saying that you can save money, but never bothered to check it out. I had seen what 5 gal bags of syrup sell for at Sams Club and just from that concluded it's not worth it. So here's what the SS was selling for at the supermarket:
Machine $200 CO2 cylinder, makes (up tp) 60L $30 Cola syrup, makes 12L $5
So, lets figure out what it costs to make a 2L bottle:
CO2 $1 Syrup $0.83
That's a recurring cost of $1.83 for 2 litres. You can buy real Coke, not some generic cola, for $1.60 and that's when it's not on sale. On sale which happens every couple weeks at one supermarket or another, you can get if for $1. The generic colas you can get for about $1 any time. And you don't have to pay $200 as an entrance fee.
I'm sure you can do better than that for the SS by shopping around. But still, unless they have some awesome flavored soda that is way different than bottled soda, the whole SS thing is nuts. I'.m sure if you go the DIY route for the machine, buy CO2 from a gas supplier in bigger tanks, etc, the math is going to improve.
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On Wed, 30 Jan 2013 06:34:05 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

I have to agree with you that the whole Soda Stream model makes no monetary sense to me.
My kids and I don't find the cola taste from coke all that much different from the Soda Stream taste - so I don't think they have an edge on taste.
So, about the only thing that the Soda Stream can sell on, at least to me, would be on price or on convenience.
I figured I'd have the price part licked by building my own carbonation machine (which was a fun and super easy project) - but the syrup is now the stumbling block.
I'm still working off the leads you guys gave to lower the price of the syrup - but your store has it for the exact same price as Bed Bath & Beyond did - so that's the biggest snag for me.
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On Wednesday, January 30, 2013 2:34:24 PM UTC-5, Danny D. wrote:

The selling point is that it's an overpriced "boutique" GADGET for rich people to waste their money on. It's something fun to do for the first few times, then you get bored with it, then you get sick of it taking up space on the kitchen counter, then you throw it away or donate it to the local church rummage sale.
It has nothing to do with taste, price, or convenience. The Sodastream flavor doesn't taste like either major cola brand. The Sodastream machine is stupidly expensive for what you get. Then, what is more convenient than twisting the cap off a 2-liter bottle and pouring?
Frankly, if you go through enough cola to justify a carbonation machine and formulating your own syrup on a purely FINANCIAL basis, you really need to revisit how much cola you drink.
Keep in mind you're paying RETAIL for small quantities of ingredients not commonly found on the consumer market, while a bottler is purchasing them on an industrial level at wholesale.
As an academic exercise it might be a worthy challenge to see if it's possible, but you're not going to exact any real monetary gain unless your family goes through thousands of liters of cola a year. If they do, God help them... Diabetes, tooth decay, digestive problems, caffeine addiction, pulmonary problems, etc. etc..
You may just have to punt this one and be content that your MacGuyver skills have produced a contraption that makes soda.
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On Feb 6, 3:08 pm, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

That about sums it up..... Exactly the conclusion I came to after looking into it a bit. It was interesting though. I kept hearing all those SodaStream commercials on the radio and they sounded dubious to me.


+1 I was wondering the same thing. After you buy all the extracts, etc, I wonder how much cola you can make versus how much it all costs. Also, I would think that getting the cola to taste like it should is no trivial task. You mix a bunch of expensive oil flavor extracts together and it doesn't taste right. Now what? There are a dozen ingredients in small quantities in the syrup, who knows which one to adjust to make it right? Maybe it can be done, but I suspect a lot of syrup might go down the drain before the correct formula is right.
I keep thinking about Coke. They've kept the exact formula and taste secret for 100 years. I don't know of a single cola out there that tastes exactly like it, despite many trying. And surely enough employees, suppliers, etc know what goes into it. I mean it's hard to hide trucks delivering barrels of orange oil, etc. So, there must be something unique about exactly what they do with those ingredients, ie how it's all brought together.

Diet soda would avoid most of that.


Yeah, when you can regularly get major brand soda on sale at one supermarket or another for $1 or so for 2 liters I tend to agree.
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You must be mad drinking that shit. I hope you don't feed it to your kids if you have any. Go out and buy some real fruit.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2181290/Having-seen-evidence-I-dont-touch-fizzy-drinks-Frankly-theyre-evil.html
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