My Vending Work Van Vandalized

I remember when i was doing my vending business during the early days, i make sure that all my vending keys and collections for the day is secured when i get home.

It was a standard procedure for me and i even have a small bag that contains all the vending keys. I was very careful during the early days and even have the cash locked up inside the van when going from one place to another.

I have a security safe inside my van and its is very hard to break in.

As time goes by and very confident in my business thinking that here in Canada everything is very safe and secure. I just have to lock the van each time to hop on to another location and it was very worry free for me.

I soon upgraded my van to a slightly new model so that it will not keep on breaking down and problems with downtime on my visits.

I woke up on a day getting ready for work sometime on the second week of December were i was planning to leave Vancouver, BC for a short break.

My driver’s side glass window was smashed and all my vending keys, collections for a couple of days, chocolates, old English cookies, Dan d pak peanuts boxes were also gone missing! Just because i was too complacent not securing my things and leave everything in my work van.

This happened just beside the street were i usually park at my townhouse. Leaving all things inside my van has been going on forever and was thinking that my place is secure but it is definitely not!

Before i went for a break in the Philippines i asked around people here in Vancouver, BC what are their personal experiences on car break ins.

  • USB phone connector in jack
  • sweater
  • empty bottles and plastic for recycle
  • handbag
  • shoulder bag
  • backpack
  • wallet
  • laptop
  • power bank
  • gift wrapped item
  • couple of loonies on car dash

I was very astounded and surprised that i made a list of points that will make you think twice when leaving your car.

I was not able to update my blog on the vending business for quite a while. The reason behind this is that i was in panic mode. It is the time that i needed to do the following things before i leave for a short break.

I wanted to make a short visit to Philippines since it is were i grew up and i somehow miss my buddies and family. You cannot go wrong with the people that you grew up with you, it is 100% transparent even thou there are some disagreements. Friends and family without any pretensions and real were my heart is most comfortable.

My time is very cramped because i have to wait for Ford dealer to have it arrived for a special order on my driver side glass since my van is still not mainstream.

How many locks shall i destroy to replace the locks on the vending machine?

The time that destroying the lock on the vending machines takes about it least 15 to 20 minutes which includes the replacement of a new lock.  There are stubborn locks that took me up to close an hour to destroy.

Imagine instead of visiting 10 locations, i was doing only 5 to 6 and not getting collections to pay my bills because of downtime.  A meager $60 to $100 collection per collection slows down.

There are some vending machines that i have installed a high security lock and i have to use up to 2-3 drill bits just to successfully destroy a lock. What i did was not to service the vending machines with high security locks and ordered duplicates from the manufacturer and have to wait for a week to arrive.

In case, you wanted to change your regular locks to this high tech high security lock then here is the company information.

Van lock Vanamatic High Security Locks is by far the best locks for your vending machine.

I have set aside everything that i have been doing regularly. I set aside my part-time online training course that i was extremely engrossed and got everything out of momentum.

I have stopped all other things and have to work 7 days a week rain or shine just to destroy locks and change them. Some locations that have high security access cards were also stolen and i cannot go to those locations and service my machines. I have to choose a day were the manager is around for me to get a spare key again.

In short my vending machine business is in turmoil. There are locations that i just did not service anymore before i left Philippines for a break.

Sometimes maybe this is a blessing is disguise that vending operators must be also on the lookout and very cautious. I had some vending professional which i regularly talked too. And he told me his work van was robbed 3 times. Twice in front of his townhouse and another time in the parking lot of Costco.

I strongly suggest doing the following precautionary measures after working even thou it takes a little of your time just to make sure that everything pans out and never happens again.

Preventive Measures After Work

  • Leave nothing near the dashboard, not even a couple of loonies
  • Do not leave any form of GPS device
  • Do not leave your USB phone charger inside your vehicle
  • Remove all products from the front till the mid section of your work van
  • Open the glove compartment so that thief will see nothing when flashing lights by
  • Also, opens the middle compartment between the driver and passenger seat if any so that thief can see that nothing is left inside not even a single dime
  • Remove all kinds of shiny objects

For added security measures on your vending work van.

  • Always bring the cash with you per location strapped beside your body no matter how small or big the collections
  • Install 2 Way car alarm with shock sensor
  • Install DVR Car Dash Cam
  • Security Clear 8mil tint for all the side windows ( if robber tried to hit glass again then glass will not break and security tint will hold the glass and will trigger the car alarm )
  • Even if your collection is minuscule, always bring the coins to the bank coin counter after doing your rounds.

There was even a story that a regular customer goes to Costco to buy a whole load of cigarettes for his convenience store and was followed to Safeway for a quick drink of soup. When he returned his work van and window was smashed and all cigarettes missing.

Did i mention earlier that a jacket left inside the car was stolen with glass smashed ?

Living dangerously in the Philippines

I guess we are not living in dangerous times were people are held at gunpoint or stab while waiting for a public ride. This is very common in the Philippines were regular folks get robbed when riding inside a jeepney. The robber pulls out a gun and announcing a hold up and everyone surrenders watches, phones, wallets and bags.

Taxi drivers in the Philippines have a dangerous livelihood too were they are constantly robbed at gunpoint or shot. It’s the powerful and rich that is left untouched by petty crimes.

Needless to say for me there is absolutely more fun in the Philippines than anywhere during the Christmas season.

There are christmas carolling

which i always go every xmas if given the opportunity to my friend’s house which he gives charity to the poor and needy.  Even a small token from your heart can make the world a big difference.

 

 

Vending Machine Business in Philippines is not lucrative. I noticed that even if there are hundreds of driver’s in the waiting room which can readily access a coke glass front vending machine is not doing good.

Lots of vending machines in the Philippines are out of order from people trying to break in. I have yet to see when the vending machine business will take off here in my hometown.

December is good time to have a short trip since business is slow here in Vancouver, BC. Make sure that you go to a place that is warm. I guess anywhere in Asia is a good choice.

I also need to regularly travel to Philippines because it is the only time that i also go for dental repairs and checkups. Medical blood test, CT scans, x rays, stress tests and bone chiropractic adjustments needed to run this vending machine business.

If you know how to maintain your vending machines then the priority is also maintaining yourself in peak shape for performance.

I guess im back on track to my usual musings.

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The Demise of the Orange Vending Machine

 

Why the Orange Vending machines did not take off here in Vancouver, BC.

During the 2015 introduction it made headlines and was an instant hit.

I’ll take you by the hand to see an in depth story from a vending operator’s point of view.

I visited one of my vending machine supplier not too long ago.

My supplier showed me a USED Orange Vending machine that squeezes fresh oranges for a drink ! It sounds awesome !

I was super excited and immediately offered it to one of my big vending account.

It is a good thing that it was not realized or else i will get into hot water and will be loosing $$$ on lease payments.

Would be wiser to get another vending machine or anything that appreciates.

Imagine getting your Vitamin C every day from your workplace.

I was very excited on the idea and i was pondering in my mind why the Orange vending machines are being sold for a hefty discount ?

I took some pictures of the Orange vending machine and went to the website and the company is located in Italy where the machines are made.

Here is the link on the Oran fresh Orange vending machine company. It is a great machine in concept, design and operation wherein it squeezes around 3 to 4 fresh oranges into a cup.

The machines are formerly installed in university and they are pulled out, the supplier told me that the university wanted a hefty commission which the owner of the Oran fresh didn’t agree and he pulled it out.

I had my mind racing with a lot of ???

I guess this story needs to be analyzed in depth.

I have a question for you : Why would a prestigious university think of $$$ instead of concerns for the students. It is after all a prestigious university. You can read between the lines.

These machines were also installed in Langara College and even the top honcho was drinking from the orange vending machine. Here is a news clip that was big during 2015. I noticed that the orange vending machine was not to be found in Langara College anymore.

I again research and typed the keywords : Problems on Orange vending machine.

Here are some links that is worth reading on the existing orange vending machine operations.

Blogger in China noticed that the orange juice was dark and not the usual color.

Reddit forum says :

  • Oranges that are about to expire goes into the orange vending machines
  • Fruit flies on some machines
  • Cockroach on machines that are located in tropical countries

Again the Orange machines are not mainstream here in Vancouver, BC and if there is an electronic part that gets broken or a mechanical part gone bad then you have to wait for ages get to order one from the supplier in Europe.

There is not enough technical support on this Orange vending machine.

I noticed also that there are also a lot of made in china orange machines for sale in alibaba, i guess this is a knockoff of the original orange vending machine from Italy. The knockoff is around $4,000 USD while the original Oran fresh made in Italy was pegged at $12,000.

It is not a joke if you are serving fresh products to your discerning customers here in Vancouver, BC. I will not assume any responsibility on such unfortunate incidents.

In business, it is not always the monetary concerns in most cases. It will do more detrimental than benefit i would say if you blindly go ahead with such an ambitious project.

In order to successfully run this Orange vending machine business, the operator must be at the location every day and inspect the produce and clean the machine. Economically this is not feasible and not applicable here in Vancouver, BC since the labor is astronomically high.

Perhaps in Asia or other parts of Europe where labor is more inexpensive, the business model will work.

If i was still living in Asia i will not hesitate in ordering the knockoff Orange vending machines made in china since the supplier’s proximity is quite near and if you will be needing parts it is also inexpensive and manageable. Deployment to all the shopping malls will not have second thoughts with me anymore. Since it is just statistics, ratio and proportion that enormous population of people will buy fresh orange from vending machines.

If there are lots of roaches in tropical countries trying to get in the machine then just work it out with the supplier since everything is cheap to retrofit.

You see this business model will work in Asia but not here in Vancouver, BC. Small fine details of problems here in Vancouver, BC will leave you out of business in no time !

Personally when i inspected the Orange vending machine on the moving parts, i will never buy from the machine since i do not know how it is maintained and you can easily get food poisoning in the worst case scenario.

I guess the best bet is for large cafeteria operations where there are at least a couple of full time personnel that will deploy an Orange vending machine on the side as an extra income earner.

The cleaning and inspection of the fresh oranges will be a morning routine once the cafeteria opens shop.

Let me ask you a question :

Are you willing to clean the orange vending machine everyday on location even if just sold around 10 cups a day ?

Is $4.5 x 10 cups = $45 less cost of goods of oranges, gasoline and time worth it ? Profit is about $2 per cup.

Are you ready to loose $12,000 on an Orange Vending Machine ?

I’m not in a way trying to discourage people getting into the orange vending machine business, this is just my opinion, everyone is different.

The orange vending machine is revolutionary and a great concept !

Maybe the business model is not yet mature and bugs have to be iron out.

 


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Vending Machine Location Contract

Yes that’s right i was able to secure a new vending machine location and need to have it serviced after installing a combo vending machine 2 weeks prior.

New Vending machine location contract needs to be checked after a couple of weeks to make sure that everything goes well with the location and the machine placement.

With new vending machine contract locations it is imperative that you initially ask the staff in charge what is the most popular product that they wanted inside the machine.

Presently doing office locations is not that as lucrative as like 10 years ago. People are evolving into healthy snacks and drinks.

That’s why here in Vancouver, BC it would be best to offer healthy options since it is gearing towards into that direction, or perhaps offer a mix and match varieties.

It is on a Monday when the rain was pouring very hard ! In the vending service industry, you have to service no matter what the weather conditions. Vancouver is a great place to move about and there is no problem when getting around.

The vending operators here are very fortunate because even there is a heavy downpour of rain, you can still continue to do business and the city is very forgiving. There are no floods, no problem with transportation system and everything is very well laid out.

Doing business here in comparison when i was in Makati City was a nightmare. I have to trust my hardy motorcycles to do the job in my deliveries including my team members where they have their own motorcycles which i have to provide. If you are dealing with computer hardware parts in Asia, the best delivery system is via motorcycle.

 

In Makati City, when it rains the roads are almost impassable and unforgiving. You have to cancel all your appointments and flooding of streets are a common occurrence and you have to live with it.

Enjoying the heavy rain downpour in Vancouver, BC while im taking a lunch break.

I thought that towards winter there will a halt in renovations.

Seems that there is no end. I was servicing a location with a vending machine on the 1st floor and the staff mentioned that only the 1st floor will be renovated and there is no need for my machine to be moved.

The duration will take around 3 long months.

I think on my next visit i will try to ask the manager if i can move the machine to the lobby area where there are a lot of guests.

Self employed people always have to be prepared with sudden uneventful situations like this.

So i guess there might be some moving expenses in case it will be moved to the first floor or else there will be no income for 3 months if it stays on the floor that will be renovated.

I also visit a community location where there are some machines which are utilized frequently by kids and parents.

I thought the dreaded out-of-order sign is no more but it seems that this is part of the business.

Coin jams scenarios will never be eliminated especially if most of the consumers are children.

I just cannot picture how the coins gets jammed inside the coin mechanism. It is actually common sense that you have to insert the coin one at a time while observing the price display that registers or acknowledge on the coin and then continue right ? Not everyone is the same i guess.

Problem :How to solve coin jams in the vending machine ?

Solution : Most cases is by flipping the coin flap inside the coin mechanism thereby releasing the accumulated coins.

See the video which i have made to show you exactly how the coin jam was resolved.

I did a lot of work on Monday since it is always a busy start of the week for me. It is always the first day of the week that i need to start the momentum to work.

Statistics of New Canadian Coin On A Cash Collection

I headed down to a coin counter that day since i have some bills to pay. The coins during that day was mostly from a coinco coin mechanism which accepts new loonies. That means all the coins that i have gathered includes a mix of new and old loonies.

I have tried this several times on the coin counter to see if the new loonies is already mainstream.

If the new loonie is mainstream and if a lot of them are around then of course i have to bring my MEI and CON LUX coin mechanisms to Broker House here in Burnaby, BC to have it re calibrated to accept the new loonies or else i will be loosing sales every day.

So what i did was to make a trial sampling computations on the statistics and ratio of cash collection’s on rejected new loonies to the overall collection’s.

Surprisingly the total cash collection’s ratio of finding a new loonies is only 0.41% on every collection’s.

For example : If you have a cash collection’s of various coins of $486 then the new loonie will be only 2 pieces

Computation is $486 cash collection’s 0.41% = 2 pieces

So for instance you have a hypothetical large haul of $1,000 cash collection’s for 2 to 3 days then it will contain only 4 pieces of new loonies.

Conclusion : Following my statistical sampling of cash collection’s and computation, it will still be fine to leave the MEI and CON LUX coin mechanisms at its present state without doing any upgrades.

I went to Brokerhouse located at Burnaby, BC and the technician told me that the cost of re calibration and upgrade to accept the new loonies will cost around $50 a piece.

At the moment in time, i chose not to upgrade my MEI and CON LUX coin mechanisms. I will be observing of the % percentage of new loonies from my total cash collection will increase to at least 2% to 5% then it will be time for me to upgrade and re calibrate all my MEI and CON LUX to comply and accept the NEW Canadian Shiny Loonie.

Sample computation :

This are all hypothetical computations. For $1000 cash coins collection, 2% will be 20 new shiny loonies, 5% will be 50 new shiny loonies.

Earning money from vending machines is tough and every expense needs to be dealt cautiously.

See the video i made on the coin counter for a coin cash collection of $486 which i just got 2 new shiny loonies.

At present im also contemplating to install all my MDB machines equipped with a debit credit card reader.

Most of the populace have debit credit cards and have quite a bit of locations that uses 90% debit credit cards instead of cash. These locations are in the west end where most of the consumers are millennial which makes it better if you just carry a plastic with you than cash.

There will be an article on how i install on existing MDB vending machines with a 3rd party debit credit card device.

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Vending Machine Robbery

I was astounded that one of my machines had an attempted vending machine robbery.

I have a public location which i visit around once a month.

This location was very notorious for vandalism and theft. I have around four machines in that location.

Three of them are cashless debit credit machines only and the odd one is a small Coke soda pop vending machine.

I thought the vending machine robberies have already subsided here in the lower mainland.

I experienced this vending machine robbery around two years ago in practically all of my public locations and have suffered great deal of losses. Normally if a vending machine is vandalized, the thief occasionally steals the bill validator stack and the coin mechanism holder which contains all the coins.

The vending machine robberies days will be numbered as more and more people are not holding cash with them. This is true for vancouverites.

The problem is that all the public locations are temporary visitors in Canada and a portion of them are reluctant to use their credit or debit card in the vending machine and they normally exchange their foreign currency to Canadian cash.

I cannot blame tourists for not fully trusting the credit debit system here in Canada yet because there are cases of reports in other countries that copies credit debit card details and siphon money.

Some people are very private and doesn’t want to be traceable when using credit debit card. So there will always exist people using cash for vending machine.

Here is a video showing my vending machine robbery failed attempt.

This method is employed where the robber drill or destroy the price indicator and insert a bent long L shaped rod with a hook to try to pop the lock.

I pity on the other public locations that was sold to other vendors on the pretense that it will be generate lots of profits, but will be a ticking time bomb for a heavy loss on vandalism.

Here is the basic rundown on expenses that will incur in case there is a vandalism on your vending machine.

  • Coin mechanism $550
  • Bill Validator $450
  • Pucklock Security Installation $350

How long do you think that the vending operator will be able to make the expenses plus the additional downtime that the vending machine is out of service for repairs ?

According to my experience, the average profit of a public vending machine is around $50 per visit and it will take around 34 weeks to recupe the loss for one machine.

Imagine if you have a lot of vending machines located in a public area and all the time are visited on a regular routine by the robber and always breaking and destroying your vending machines then you will have some sleepless nights and some default on credit card payments and maybe rent or mortgage payments.

Here in Vancouver, BC the cost of living for regular people is extremely expensive and it is impossible to stash money here even if you are self-employed, even if you have hundreds of vending machines. It would work only if you have thousands of vending machines. But statistically there is will more break ins and out of service vending machines if you work with thousands.

I guess any form of business that entails manual work and trading your time for money is a dead end street and will be slaving a lifetime of work unless if you enjoy what you are doing.

Nevertheless, i was very happy that the robbery attempt failed.

Did you i tell you the last time my driver’s side mirror was a hit-and-run incident ?

Maybe it was the same person who did it to me again ? Second time around and now it almost smashed my blind spot mirror.

Here is a link that my driver’s side mirror was hit when blind spot mirror is still intact.

Here is a video when my driver’s side mirror was hit the second time around.

When i was headed to a location that was complaining of money being eaten which i did a quick fix the last time, i thought Halloween was over and i literally surprised while i reached my hand while opening the vending machine lol !

The robbery was enough experience for me already when i parked in downtown for a quick service call. The parking meter seems to have a perennial problem on people trying to play pranks by inserting slugs, foreign coins or robbery attempt on fishing out coins which i have mentioned on my previous article.

By the way when i first got to Vancouver, BC from the Philippines i have a lot of Philippine quarters and they work for public meters in Vancouver, BC. Sorry about this! I was just a curious cat when I am trying out the Philippine coins if they would work on the parking meters here in downtown.

As i was parking on a loading area in the west end of Vancouver.

You never know what is lurking on the garbage bins.

I remember about two or three years ago when i was driving in homer or hornby in downtown i saw a guy on a bicycle and suddenly smashed the rear window of a car parked and took out a backpack. This incident happened broad daylight when there was actually a lot of people walking by and a busy intersection with lots of cars passing by !

I’m just wondering why not make Plexiglas instead of breakable glass on the vehicles ? Or apply a tint from the inside of the vehicle which in Manila where everyone by default applies to all the vehicles.

If you apply a tint from the inside, this is a form of deterrent from the thief that would think twice in smashing your window to lurk and find some goodies inside your vehicle.

Here is a recommendation that everyone should apply to their vehicle.

When you are in Taiwan, if you attempt to smash a very tinted car, you will be out for surprise by the triad.

When you are in the Philippines or Asia in general.

Do you know that when you are in Manila city or especially when you are stuck in the traffic in the Philippines. Thieves would casually pass by the try to open your doors and make a quick snatch on your phone or bag if this is visible from the outside. In the Philippines it seems that there are constant danger everywhere and you should be on the lookout.

When i was ending my day i proceeded to a bank with coin sorting machine. I noticed that there are a lot of these new loonies already in circulation.

The new loonies will not work on MEI, Coin Lux and old coin co coin mechanisms. Seems that the six tubes coin co coin mech doesn’t have any problems on accepting the new loonies.

Next year will be very busy for everyone to update their coin mechs so that the new loonies can be accepted by the vending machine.

This is another unforeseen problem that most vendors will be encountering. Upgrading coin mech is around $30 and im not sure on the turnaround because i will be bringing in my MEI, Conlux to Brokerhouse located in Burnaby for quote and turn around time for the coin mechs to be upgraded.

I also received some news that another new $10 dollar bill is coming out, all my bill validators was not yet upgraded for the previous new $10 dollar bills and now another $10 dollar bill.

Here is the story on the unveiling of the new Canadian $10 dollar bill.

Here is a video taken on how the new shiny loonies looks like.

I have an interesting story to tell you on a recent breakthrough on the vending machine industry offering fresh drinks coming out from a vending machine. It requires a lot of work and i will be writing another blog if this project will be pushing through and what will be arising from it.

Till next time !

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Keyless Lock For Vending Machines

I used to have six ( 6 ) combo vending machines in a public hotel about two years ago and was robbed and vandalized twice.

I installed puck locks on all six ( 6 ) of them and it did not happen to me anymore.

The new buyer had a break in with the Puck Lock system which i heard when the location was still his. Sadly the management choose another vendor just recently and he had to sell the machines at a discount including the loss of this public hotel location. Another vendor informed me that probably the old vendor did not comply with the management on some changes to the machines to install even color sticker on all the machine for a uniform look and blend in with the hotel’s wallpaper.

If you are not flexible and do not make any compromise to the location then your days will be numbered.

It’s just like a marriage relationship, both parties need constant communication, compromises and flexibility for everything to work out.

Here in Vancouver, BC it seems that looking for locations brings to mind on : infatuation, marriage and divorce breakup cycles.

My locations presently are around 100% doing good and have very good relationship with all managers after learning my lessons on my first year not reaching out to management to develop some sense of rapport.

Being Flexible is the key.

Going back to the security measures.

I’m always constantly thinking for a security measure that won’t allow deter any kind of vandalism attempts. Right now most of the vending machines : snack, soda pop or combo machines are very vulnerable to theft especially in the public high locations.

This is very true for locations in shopping malls, universities and hotels.

Can you believe it or not ? University vending machine are always broken into since they have to remain open for hungry students at night.

Around 99% of the hotels have a form of vending machine installed in their building because it is for the convenience for their customers and also no need of assigning another staff.

It is not practical to have a snack kiosk and manned by the hotel staff for snacks and pop to run it since the staff would be better off running the daily activities inside the hotel premises.

That’s why most hotels just opt a vendor to place vending machines and in turn get a cut of the profits on a monthly basis and not bothering the maintenance schedule.

When i was strolling in Metrotown on a sunday, i noticed that all the CokeAnd soda pop vending machines are equipped with key less locks.

I guess this will be more practical than to install a puck lock because there is no need to retrofit and expensive labor needed to move, drill and weld.

Here is a short video which i took when i was at Metrotown on one of the Coke soda pop vending machines.

And if you are ambitious enough to get rid of all your keys then this is the route to take. Especially if you have a number of machines in public locations which you think is not safe.

For most vendors their machines are secured in offices, warehouses, factories and private schools which are secured.

Then this key less lock doesn’t need to be bothered with.

It seems for now the cost i would guess is very prohibitive for me, i would instead invest in debit credit readers for my vending machines which is more practical for me.

Here is a link in You Tube on the manufacturer’s Key less Lock for Vending machines in case you wanted to know how it works !

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How to hack a vending machine with a coin and string

I was extremely busy the last few days. Sometimes when you are too focused on your vending service business.

I was wondering why there is a surge of vehicles especially in the afternoons stuck in most gasoline joints.

When you are a journeyman in no matter what kind of service industry you are then you would realize that the gasoline prices are normally highest in the mornings. The prices drop when everyone is rushing back home to for a much deserved sumptuous dinner.

The gasoline stations attendant told me that there was a pipeline rupture in Prince George and upsetting the prices to rocket. Recent news tells us that repairs are underway and the surge of prices will not last long. Probably it will settle in the mid 150’s which im used to.

Here are the pictures i took during the day and afternoon.

I wish i have time to drive to Abbotsford during late afternoon rush hour.

When you are on the road every day, you envy the people in the office that is comfortably seated.

I work i had before which requires me to seat the whole afternoon on a table and entertain customers walk ins and procedures in the printer refilling station way back in the Philippines and somehow i reminiscence.

I’m into another phase of business right now, in the self employment livelihood there will be always constant changes on all aspect of lifestyle and never same.

This week requires me almost to be in downtown most of the time which sometimes cause some frustration not only in a struggle to find a good spot for parking but there are always parking meters that are rigged for extraction of money.

Here is the news from CBC News.

This is one the meters again i encountered. The picture below depicts that my $1 ( Loonies ) clearly is inside the coin meter and im just puzzled what kind of contraption the syndicate uses to fish out the coins later when everyone is rushing back home.

I always take pictures just to make sure that in case i get a parking ticket, i can justify it for my defense.

By the way two ( 2 ) days earlier i went to visit one of my school locations and was astounded why they insert plastic coins in the vending machine ?

In the vending service industry, it’s not all the time that you visit your location everything is predictable on your meager collections.

This time the expected collections is not realized because of a plastic coin found inside the soda pop vending machine. Of course, the school authorities will always be informed and notified immediately to avoid future problems.

Here are the pictures of the plastic coins that im talking about.

Did it tell you that im going to see if the hacking a vending machine with a coin and string still works ?

Here is what i have prepared for you to see if this contraption is really working.

 

How to hack a vending machine with a coin and string

Things to prepare :

  • dental floss
  • coin with a hole ( see my previous post on where i got this coin from )

String to coin 18 inches in length

Attach the string to the coin with a hole and have it at least about 18 inches in length so that the coin can reach inside the coin mechanism.

If the string is too short then you cannot fish and play with it inside the coin mechanism.

Insert coin and string into the coin slot

You will see a sequence of pictures when i was trying to insert the coin into the vending machine.

The vending machine is equipped with conlux coin mechanism.

Conclusion

i have tried to use the hacking the vending machine with the use of a coin and string. I tried many attempts of inserting and pulling it but the price indicator never did register on the townie ( $2 ).

I even flick the $2 into the coin slot and the coin just slides down to the coin return slot as a reject.

The conlux coin mech which is equipped perhaps in all the healthy max combo vending machines seemed instinctively that the coin is not the appropriate type.

If you try to pull it up to get back the $2 ( townie ) it will never be aligned back to the coin slot and you will never get back your money. The string will break off if you pull it hard rendering all your time and efforts futile.

I went to another location which has different types of coin mechanism and trying to see if the hack with a coin and a string would work.

It so happened today that i was in one of my locations with four ( 4 ) machines inside a lunch room with different types of coin mechanisms.


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How Much does it cost to lease a vending machine ?

vending machine lease contract

Is leasing a vending machine a good way to start on your vending machine business ?

What are the costs involve the leasing a vending machine ?

When you are starting a vending machine business, you have several options to consider. You can go ahead and start it from the scratch.

However, it requires a lot of capital because you will need to invest on the machines as well as one the location. Or else, you can obtain a vending machine from a franchise.

Out of the above mentioned options, people prefer to start their own vending machine business. Then they are provided with the flexibility to manage the business operations. In other words, they are provided with the chance to manage their own businesses and keep on making money along with time.

But if you are not in a position to absorb the upfront expenses of starting a vending machine business, you don’t need to worry about anything. That’s because you can simply lease a vending machine and start the business. That’s where you will wonder how much does it cost to lease a vending machine.

If you lease a vending machine for a period of 48 months, you will have to spend around $125 per month on the lease commitment. You also need to pay insurance on top of the lease.

However, this amount can vary based on the type of the vending machine that you purchase. However, the figure is reasonable amount for you to have a basic understanding about the amount that you will have to pay per month on the vending machine lease.

Now you know how much does it cost to lease a vending machine. There are some terms and conditions, which you need to adhere to, while you go forward with the lease. You need to have a clear understanding about those terms and conditions as well. Then you will be able to get the best possible returns out of the amount you spend.

You should also have a basic understanding about the process that you will have to follow when leasing a vending machine. Then you will be able to go ahead and follow those steps, so that you can end up with a smoother experience when starting the new vending machine business.

As the first step, you need to determine what sort of products you are planning to sell with the vending machine.

vending products

That’s because the vending machine differs based on the specific product that you are planning to sell. In addition, the size and the space requirements for the vending machine business would also change based on the requirements.

Next, you need to take a look at the maintenance cost that is linked with managing a vending machine.

vending maintenance tools

For example, when you go ahead with a coffee machine, you will have to invest more time and money on regular servicing. But when you go ahead with a soda machine, you don’t need to invest such a lot of time or money on the servicing. Therefore, you must consider all your expenses and then determine what the perfect vending machine is for you to get started with.

Next, you need to download or draw up form lease contracts for the space of the vending machine in a business property.

vending leasing agreement

You can also go ahead and negotiate the lease amount that you are going to pay for the property, where you have the vending machine installed. You can simply visit the local businesses in your region and approach the management directly. Then you can ask how much it would cost you to lease a space for the vending machine. Then you will be able to execute the vending machine lease document.

Once you finalize the space requirements and commit on the lease, you need to go ahead and pay attention towards the vending machine lease. That’s where you need to focus on what kind of a vending machine you need to purchase.

Based on the type of vending machine you buy, the amount that you have to put as the lease would differ. With a basic research on the internet, you will be able to come across the perfect vending machine, which matches with your business requirements. Then you will be able to go ahead with it as well.

Conclusion

vending machines in premises

It is better if you can select more than one vending machine, which can help you with getting your requirements catered. Then you can compare the lease rates for the different vending machines. Then you must go ahead and obtain the specifications, which are the physical measurements for each vending machine type that you have selected. Along with the lease rates, you need to compare the specifications. Then you can determine what the most profitable option available for you to go ahead with is.

Based on all the information you have gathered, it will be possible for you to select a vendor. Then you have to simply move forward and execute the lease agreement for your vending machine. Then you can also arrange a date, so that the vendor will be able to deliver the vending machines to your premises. You will be able to see this date in the lease agreement that you sign with the vendor as well.

vending products

When the lease agreement is finalized, you can purchase stock that is needed for your vending machines. Then you will be able to fill in the vending machines and start the business, as soon as they are delivered to your premise by the vendor. You should also plug the vending machine and double check if it is working for the customers.

As the last step, you can calculate the profit that you will be able to generate from your leased vending machines. Then you can determine whether you are making good profits or not. If you are making good profits, it is possible for you to go ahead and lease another vending machine. Then you will be able to increase your profits and make more money out of the business.

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How to open misaligned tubular lock on vending machine

Noon time strike!

I was getting hungry and was determined to finish off one more location before heading to about three more to call it a day.

This location has been cooperating with me for the longest time already.

I was on my 5th year with this location and i never missed a rental payment on this location and this costs me around $75 per month just to keep both machines inside the building.

It is imperative that i service this location at least once a week

since it is one of the good ever green performers on my vending machine business route.

I immediately entered the premises and took noticed that both machine needed my refilling services.

I was surprised why the tubular lock on my vending machine was vandalized.

This location has been with me for the longest time and the occupants are very honest and don’t dare do such things.

Most of the occupants are partly subsidized from the government on their rental and it is relatively easy for them to pay rent to the government and just have to work minimally to gather other income for personal expenses.

Sometimes when i was even thinking how fortunate they are since everything is provided and being pampered by the government. In comparison to the Philippines, if you are disabled there will be absolutely minimal help from the government and forget about pension, welfare and pay checks.

Filipinos have to work their ass off in order to have a secured old age security.

It is mostly the business class or high status working careers that are able to save up substantial savings in order to continue the lifestyle which can be enjoyed till old age.

Forget about the Philippine government since there is not much financial support. The indigenous tribes in the Philippines also is ignored and left out to themselves unlike here in Canada or the United States where they are pampered, taken care of and offered with a lot of free resources which sometimes i envy.

I simply cannot open the snack vending machine because someone tried to pick and forcibly wanted to open the tubular lock.

The lock is supposed to look aligned so that the key can freely move. But the lock was turned about 1/4, i just don’t know why the perpetrator took so much time just to steal maybe the most is $50 dollars on the snack machine in case the person is successful in opening it.

Here is a picture on how the tubular lock looks like when the perpetrator tried to try to forcibly open the tubular lock but without success and leaving me frustrated.

Noticed that the picture above shows that it is almost impossible to open the tubular lock using the regular vending machine keys.

In order for the tubular lock to be open, the two grooves has to be aligned so that the key can fit.

The have tried to out the key forcibly into the lock but it doesn’t work. The solution to successfully open the tubular lock is to shave off the protruding notch or metal on the tubular shape key.

It took me around almost 10 minutes! and i hammered the key on the tiles and floor in order to shape to remove the protruding notch.

I hammered the key into the tubular lock and was able to open the snack machine and did my refilling service.

I immediately notified the manager in charge and told me that will try to advise the tenants. I hope they listen and have empathy towards small self-employed businessman.

I did not have enough time to change locks to eliminate this problem. But on my next duty im planning to install both machines with special tubular locks like the ones on my other vending machine picture below.


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A Strange Case of Vending Machine trips breaker

It is a usual busy day again for vending machine business.

When it is towards the end of the month a lot of self-employed small business owners work exhaustively in securing collection from locations for mortgage or rental bills.

I got call previously from the management on a public location that one of my combo vending machine at the ground floor or lobby has been turning off by itself.

I was alarmed that if this persists it may mean a bad compressor that is tripping the internal breaker of the combo vending machine.

This was the problem before when the location called me, i actually disconnected the compressor from the combo vending machine and this did not happen which is about two months ago.

When i was away for a vacation, i got some temporary help and had the combo vending machine’s compressor reconnected and he told me that the combo vending machine’s internal breaker did not trip and was working without any problems for more than 30 minutes.

I was happy that i do not have to buy a new or used compressor and will be able to save $650 for repairs.

Going back to the call which was about two days ago.

I immediately went to inspect the machine at the ground floor or lobby.

The combo vending machine was indeed off and i was surprised that a heavy-duty power cord was on the same electrical outlet sharing with the combo vending machine.

The combo vending machine actually needed around 20 amps to have a stable operating power.

If the power was interrupted and shared by another appliance then the combo vending machine’s internal breaker will trip thereby turn off power automatically to protect the vending machine.

I disconnected the compressor again on the combo vending machine so that the power outlet can be shared with an appliance.

The location is under major renovation and opt to keep my vending machines running to serve its customer which im happy to have mutual relationship.

When i disconnected the cables connected to the compressor, the combo vending machine doesn’t trip the internal breaker anymore even with a major appliance sharing the power outlet.

The sales of this combo vending machine is the same even thou if the compressor is disconnected, so i guess i will just leave it this way so that i don’t have to keep going back and forth on service calls.

I rebooted the combo vending machine and it seems to be working very well.

 

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A Hundred Years

I was servicing a location in the east side of town. The people there seems to be very familiar with diversity and just talks just about anyone.

There seems to be no superficial looks and none of the populace are judgmental.

It reminds back when I was still living in the Philippines where I grew up in Makati City which is very similar to Downtown Vancouver or I would dare say a mini Hong Kong or Singapore.

All the concrete establishments are there. You can be as cosmopolitan as you can be in a filipino way.

In Makati City where I grew up my neighborhood are all super friendly because everyone knows each other and whenever you go out to hotels it seems that you always end up rubbing elbows with someone who is familiar.

It seems that when you are an outsider, no ones likes to talk to you and normally the people have this snobbish attitude. The expats there in makati city seems to have a hard time rubbing elbows with the neighborhood and they are always at ease with their own groups. Except for expats who opened up their own shops in the makati city neighborhood.

I have acquaintances with a lot of expats coming from Australia and united states who opened brick and mortar businesses in the Philippines.

Most of them who are flexible and have this friendly attitude have become very successful in their business endeavors.

Of course a westerner who ventures to a country that is homogeneous like the Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, China or Japan can be turned only in two ways either assimilate or xenophobic.

As I have mentioned before that self-employed people in whatever background that they came from are naturally flexible and willing to assimilate simply because this is survival.

If you always have a blank face when servicing your locations and running your business then your days will be numbered. Customers knows what kind of mood you are projecting.

If you are too stuck up with whatever thoughts then you will get nowhere in business because you will be too judgmental and it is likely that you won’t capture the heart of the masses.

While I was servicing the location in the east side Vancouver, a person came up to me and mentioned : “Wish that you can keep the location for a hundred years”.

I instantly replied to him : “It will take me about 20 years to pay off my mortgage and another 10 years to buy my dream cars and the remaining years to travel and see the world!. Maybe another 10 years for my blogs and websites to rank in Google 1st page” he heh heh

There was call again from a location wanting me to go and service immediately.

Seems that this location is engrossed with water. I drove by and checked the machines and I silently just left the place after servicing the location. The machines are about 3/4 full and there are still water inside the machines. It was an absolute waste of time when I got there.

Customer is always right.

Next time I will just go to that location on my projected schedule while is every month. I know that the machines are still OK but as not to piss off the customer, you just have to go and service it even you know that it is still full. The location seems to be in love with water.

Or maybe the location missed me so much that I need to show my face all the time.

This getting to be a fatal attraction in the making. he he he

On my way home I visited a location which is on schedule and needed to be tended asap since it was already about a month’s time.

This location used to be on a bi weekly ( every two weeks ) visits because it is a factory located in Delta and there are always thirsty and workers that are always wanting snacks.

I was running this location for almost three to four years already, I lost count in my mind.

About one year ago while im servicing this location there was a healthy max combo machine suddenly that appeared with our snack and pop machines. It has all the bells and whistles and comes with a debit credit card reader for convenience.

During that time I was contemplating that I wish that the manager won’t side track and get too eager on depending on this new machine since it caters all forms of payments.

And might opt to do away with our aging machines in favor to the new vendor.

Our snack and pop machines are more than ten years old and the coin mechanism are non mdb which means that you cannot upgrade and adopt a bill validator and credit debit reader since the motherboard is the old school style. Our snack and pop machines are still using windows xp if you are comparing an analogy to the age and capability of the laptop.

Our snack and pop machines cannot run windows 10. In order to do this, the pop machine has to go and probably the snack machine can still be upgraded with a new motherboard which will cost around $1,000+ and debit credit readers and bill validators can work.

The sales on that location even thou without the new flashy combo machine prior to that is only around $120 gross sales every month and this translates to only $60 take home profit after deducting gasoline, cost of goods with my sweat and energy included.

Upgrading the motherboard to mdb complaint is not feasible with the $120 gross sales collection every month, so if the manager decided to keep the new vendor then it is fine with me.

I was surprised today when I was servicing the snack and pop machines that the new flashy combo machine is not in the lunch room anymore.

This comes to mind that maybe the new vendor retreated and found some new locations that are more promising and moving his machine with do him better in sales rather than sticking out with the existing snack and pop vending machines.

Or maybe the management have decided just to keep one vendor ?

I myself did not ask the management on my way out of the location, I do not want to raise eyebrows or changing their minds to getting back the new vendor’s machine.

If you wanted to stay in the vending machine business for a long time then sometimes you have to stick it up. The bottom line is the vendors’ performance and service.

If you go to your location faithfully and service it all the time without any lapses and problems, there is no reason for any right-minded manager to relieve your services.

Did I mention to you that there are also locations that the managers can instantly press the email send button and kick you out without consulting or give a valid reason why you and your machines are to be thrown out ?

Here is the link on what kind of business locations to avoid at all costs on your vending machine business.

You will be loosing money in no time on such kind of locations.

As long as you can perform then you can keep the location for a hundred years! He he lol.

 

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