"Prediction is difficult, especially about the future." -- Yogi Berra
Question #93405 posted on 12/14/2020 7:44 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Just a random question that popped in my head. World it be possible to make a vending machine that didn't run on electricity? Like, maybe it has to be hand cranked or something.

- Zwerg Zwei

A:

Dear Double Zed,

Sorry it took so long to respond. My immediate thought is that gumball machines and other candy machines and toy dispensers do this. The whole entire process of using your coins and getting something back is mechanical, and I would imagine that there would be a way to scale this idea up so that you would need more quarters to buy something more expensive, but it would be pretty difficult for a mechanical machine to read bills, and that's what people use mostly. I think the other place you could look at is mechanical arcade games, such as pinball. Also, just when I was digging, I found this mechanical cigarette machine.

-Inklings

posted on 12/16/2020 5:15 p.m.
In Japan, they have developed a vending machine that can be hand cranked to give it power if the electricity goes out.
https://www.theverge.com/2012/3/14/2870256/sanden-hand-crank-vending-machine
~ Mary