I am thinking of getting a soy milk maker and would appreciate some advice since it is 20 mile trip to buy soy milk.
A soy milk maker?!? We, Asians, have always made our own and it's quite easy and simple. It's like making pea soup.
Soak soy beans overnight or for several hours. Put the beans in a blender with some water. Blend it well. Put the mixture in a pot. Bring it to a boil; then, reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it cool down. Place a cheese cloth over a bowl and strain the mixture through it. Discard the remains. The liquid is practically soy milk!
Practice with a small quantity of water first, you can always liquify it to fit your taste.
Btw, some recipe would instruct you to strain the blended mixture first, then boil it. I believe that if you do it that way you'd be throwing away all the proteins that could be extracted from the remains of the soy beans when the mixture is heated up. So IMHO, it's best to heat it first, then strain it afterward.
Asians like to add a little sugar and pandan extract to it. If you ever go to a Vietnamese restaurant, you can give our version of this drink a try but do watch out that some restaurant liquify and add sugar a bit too much.