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  • Barley mill plans or ideas.

    I recently got into brewing beer and I am thinking I should make a grist mill.
    I have heard 3 roll mills are the best but I dont know a lot about it other than you need a good crush without creating too much flower which can plug the mash tun.
    The standard gap seems to be around .030 to .035".
    In a 3 roller mill how or where is the gap set?
    I have done some looking around and cant seem to find any plans for a mill, can anybody point me in the right direction?
    I have an old 2.5" hydro mast which I am thinking I could make the rollers from and I have a variety of motors and pulley's to drive it with too..
    Bushins or bearings for the rollers?
    Any ideas or advice would be appreciated!
    Cheers,
    Jon

  • #2
    I brew some beer but I have not got into all grain stuff yet. I just done a google search for Barley mill plans and there are a bunch of ideas. Even some youtube videos.. after you enter barley mills into google and the first page comes up click on Images at the top of the page. Good luck and let us know what you come up with.
    _____________________________________________

    I would rather have tools that I never use, than not have a tool I need.
    Oregon Coast

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    • #3
      Yep, near as I can tell, other then the concrete roller one, they are pretty much all the same "barley crusher" commercial unit that people attach a motor to and put out a video of it running.
      I am a complete machining rookie and was hoping I could find some plans.
      Cheers,
      Jon

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      • #4
        Brew Your Own magazine published plans for a mill some time back. I gave all my back issues to my son, so I can't check on which one. I think they have an online index, you might want to check there.
        Last edited by KJ1I; 09-25-2017, 09:07 PM. Reason: Puppy's been outside and is napping.
        Kevin

        More tools than sense.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Jon Heron View Post
          Bushins or bearings for the rollers?
          Any ideas or advice would be appreciated!
          Cheers,
          Jon
          Delrin or Acetal bushings. No need to oil. No risk of contamination by oil.
          Location: Long Island, N.Y.

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          • #6
            You'll laugh but how about the old wringer washer ringer with delrin roolers & a motor?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by RichR View Post
              Delrin or Acetal bushings. No need to oil. No risk of contamination by oil.
              My Valley Mill uses brass bushings.

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              • #8
                I don't know how many home brew stores are in your area, but most home brew stores will grind your grains for far less than you can own or build a grinder
                _____________________________________________

                I would rather have tools that I never use, than not have a tool I need.
                Oregon Coast

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                • #9
                  We had a roller mill for crushing feed grain back when I was a farm kid in the 60's. It had fairly large rollers IIRC around 10 inches in diameter and they were grooved axially. The smaller the roller the more difficult it is for it to grab the kernels and i don't think a small smooth roller will give satisfactory results.

                  You might be able to advertise in Kijiji for an old defunct roller mill that you could salvage the rollers from. No need to feed full width of course.
                  Location: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Arcane View Post
                    The smaller the roller the more difficult it is for it to grab the kernels and i don't think a small smooth roller will give satisfactory results.
                    Most, if not all, homebrew scale mills use a coarse knurl on the rollers (which are typically 1" to 2" diameter).

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by adatesman View Post
                      Most, if not all, homebrew scale mills use a coarse knurl on the rollers (which are typically 1" to 2" diameter).
                      That small? I would have though they'd have been at least 3 - 4 inches.
                      Location: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by lugnut View Post
                        I don't know how many home brew stores are in your area, but most home brew stores will grind your grains for far less than you can own or build a grinder
                        Yup that is what I am doing now. I am about to start buying the grain in bulk though so it will not be feasible to go to the store every time I want to mash in.
                        I found this video showing a 3 roller mill. It looks like they use a cam to set the gap between the bottom 2 rollers and only one roller is driven.
                        I cant find anything on the gap on the top roller though and frankly I dont see the purpose of the top roller either?


                        I am thinking of just buying a chunk of 2" Durabar to make the rollers. Would cast iron be a good choice for this?

                        Cheers,
                        Jon

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                        • #13
                          The other top roller serves to meter the grains into the gap where they're crushed. I expect it's just free rolling.

                          You probably want a malleable material for the rollers if you're going to knurl them. If you just milled longitudinal grooves I suppose cast iron would also work fine.
                          .
                          "People will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time they will pick themselves up and carry on" : Winston Churchill

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Arcane View Post
                            That small? I would have though they'd have been at least 3 - 4 inches.
                            Yup, that small. The ones on my Valley Mill are 1.5". The key is to have them knurled so that the grain is drawn in despite the large pinch angle.

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                            • #15
                              I have handled a couple commercial units now and they all have a very deep knurl that would be next to impossible to achieve on my clapped out lathe.
                              I was thinking I should be able to single point a deep knurl using the threading gears on my lathe, is that possible and a good idea? If so any advice on the setup would be appreciated.
                              Short of that I was thinking I could also just cut strait grooves by indexing the roller's on the lathe and manually rolling the carriage back and forth?
                              I tapped my first coffee oatmeal stout yesterday "Irish breakfast" mmmm...

                              Cheers,
                              Jon

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