In my house coffee is important. So much so, it was one of my primary worries when we decided to cruise our boat full-time for a few years. I was surprised that there is very little concise information on available options. I decided to write a journal on my decision-making process that led me to purchase a Coleman Quickpot Propane Coffeemaker.
I think that me and the coffeemaker will get along just fine but I plan to fill it full of bullet holes and sink it in the Gulf of Mexico if it doesn’t work out. I don’t want to think of the things I will do to this coffeemaker if it doesn’t uphold its end of the bargain!
There are a lot of choices for portable coffeemaker and this is what I found for boats:
Generator for 110 power. As much as I love coffee, I couldn’t think about this option because it is expensive and noisy at 5A-6A, when I wake up and need that sweet caffeine!
Inverter to 110 plug-in. I don’t have a large enough battery bank to make this a viable option. Surprisingly, coffeemaker pull a lot of watts to run for about 15-18 minutes brewing time. Most makers run from 900-1500 watts and that will kill a batter in no time.
12v plug coffeemaker. I thought that this might be a good option until I read the reviews on these systems. It seems that the smaller, 4 pot coffeemaker work well in this situation but I can drink 4 cups of coffee in the first 5 minutes of being awake! Cuisinart makes a 10 cup model that is nice looking but it got horrible reviews. I just can’t chance it!
Battery coffeemaker. This option was a joke and I couldn’t bring myself to research further.
Propane coffeemaker. This seems to be the best and most viable option for me. I see that the 4 cup models are most frequently utilized but there are a few 10 cup models. There are a few different brands but one maker is no longer in business. I’ve owned a lot of Coleman camping gear in my past and it has never let me down.
I like the advertised features of the coffeemaker I purchased. It states that a small propane tank will last 4.5 hours on a full-burn, which equates to about 10 pots of coffee. The brew time is a reasonable 18 minutes. It looks and works like a normal coffeemaker, front load. It is not a percolator. I don’t care for percolated coffee unless it is the only option.
This devices weighs in at a shocking 10.4 lbs but I got a nifty nylon carry case and have a spot picked out for it next to our cooler on the deck of the boat. It is three parts: pot, coffeemaker and case. Most models come with a glass pot that wouldn’t last a few nights on a boat so I upgraded to a nice thermal metal one. I hope it keeps the coffee warm long enough to enjoy the last cup.
Watch out if you are trying to buy one on the Internet because you can get screwed from trusted sites like Amazon! The list price for the package I got was almost $300 new. A search of the normal Internet sites yielded a huge range of prices, shipping costs and delivery times. In the end, I purchased each item individually from Amazon to save money. It is a shame we have to get crafty to save money these days. I paid $125 out the door with free shipping. I will have an extra glass coffee pot that won’t go on the boat but can be donated. If anyone is interested in just the pot and propane maker, Amazon beat out Target online by $6, $71.99.
I feel pretty good about my choice but the proof will be in the cup. I’m not planning to use it until we are underway because I don’t think I can handle the rejection if it doesn’t work. I will keep its box and send it back to Amazon (100% satisfaction guarantee) if it doesn’t work. That is, if it makes it off the boat alive after a disappointing brew..