In 2020, I decided to invest in an espresso machine since I am spending an inordinate amount of time at home and find myself regularly longing for a latte. However, I didn’t have the kitchen counter space for a machine, grinder, and all of the tools needed for a reasonable workflow.
After looking at a bunch of portable kitchen carts, I eventually came across the Decent Coffee Cart. Decent Espresso is a company that makes custom espresso products and the Decent coffee cart is sort of a DIY project where you modify an IKEA cart and convert it into an ideal coffee cart.
A how-to of the video of the process is here:
I loved the idea and design, but was absolutely shocked by the price of the parts kit that Decent sells for the cart on their website. Specifically, the $240 water pump and $290 pitcher rinser. Look, I’m as lazy as the next person, but not so lazy that I’m willing to pay multiple times what a product is worth just so I don’t have to look for it myself. Decent has every right to upcharge for parts since they came up with the design, but I’m pretty shocked by how much they upcharge.
I found the exact same water pump on Amazon for $52.99, which is an 78% discount from $240.
I found a solid pitcher rinser on eBay for $50, which is a 83% discount from $290.
I’m only 2 parts in and I already have savings of $427!
The BROR IKEA cart can be had for $100. I ended up buying a portable jigsaw to cut the wood top since I figured I would eventually use it again.
My espresso machine doesn’t support being directly plumbed and instead has a water resevior. I thought it would be great to have a water sprayer like they do on kitchen sinks so I could refill it directly from the cart. I found this sprayer on Amazon which was great for the price.
- IKEA BROR cart ($100)
- Water Pump ($53)
- Glass Rinser ($50)
- Sprayer/Faucet ($20)
- 5 gallon water jug
- 1/8 in. Barb x 1/4 in. MIP Brass Adapter Fitting ($5)
- Water tube fittings ($12)
- 220 and 320 grit sandpaper
- Urethane sealant
- Smart outlet to independently control the grinder, water pump, and espresso machine ($20)
- 2x Portafilter Holders ($18 each)
Total cost: ~$300
Differences from the Decent coffee cart
The steps to build the cart are exactly the same as the Decent cart, however, since my espresso machine is not plumbed like the Decent, I didn’t need the Catering Kit. Instead, the water line will run like this
+------------> Glass Sprayer | | 5 Gallon Jug --> Water Pump --> Tee fitting | | +------inline valve----brass fitting----> Sink sprayer ^^ (comes with plastic fittings)
I also made the following changes:
- Drilled my own holes to mount the cart shelves at the heights I preferred
- Flipped the cart shelves upside down so the shelf would have a “lip” and be somewhat recessed
- Added 2x portafilter holders to the side
One thing to note: don’t do what I did and decide to sand and seal the wood after a few weeks. I eventually used 220 and 320 grit to smooth the plywood and applied a total of 3 coats of spray gloss urethane, but the wood already had coffee stains on it by the time I got around to it.