January 11, 2010 - 8:25am
Anyone have a home stone mill?
Just thinking of treating myself to something nice, so I decided on a mill for my home. Whole flours are definetly the best as fresh as possible and I do a bit of home brewing where I would also like to use fresh milled grains. I would really like a stone mill and I see there are some available online. I would probably get a manual one as the machine ones are a bit out of my price range. So any information on the subject would be greatly appreciated.
Here is an article about my home stone flour mill.
That URL didn't work for me, but I found an article with the same name at:
Country Living Mill and I love it. They are pricey but I think well worth it. Look at Pleasnant Hill Grain online and they list a bunch of them. Mine is a burr mill. I don't know much about stone mills, but I love mine!
If your mill has to be both stoned and hand-cranked, there aren’t a lot of options. Retsel has some. Several are in this review:
For what it's worth I will describe the mill I use. I'm not sure of what worth this info will be to you, other than the mill has served without a glitch 2-3 times per month for a LONG time. It can produce very fine flour. I use it mostly to mill whole wheat and Rye berries. So I guess this is an endorsement of this style of mill if you can find a used one.
I am sure this MIll is at least 30 years old & probably not still being manufactureed. It is a "Marathon Mill"; I do not know the capacity of the tin tray that catches the four . . . I guess it is about 8-10 cups. It has a manual cranck that inserts in the back (presumably if there were no power, I have never use the crank).
I use frshly milled whole wheat flour that goes into the mix while still warm from milling. Make all the difference in the world . . . soft, never dry or bitter.
Good luck in your serch and in your brewing!
Assuming you live in the USA, you will find that inexpensive manual mills are not very useful for milling grain in any quantity, plus they often are incapable of producing a fine flour.
A more expensive manual mill will run you about $400 (minimum); these are large, heavy units and must be bolted to a heavy table or mounting surface.
This site - http://www.grainmillcomparison.com/ - has excellent reviews of most of the manual mills commonly available in the USA. These are *independent* reviews - the author does not sell mills. Worth exploring.
The most affordable electric mills for the home user are the micronizer mills, such as the Nutrimill. The major downside of these mills is that they cannot mill grits or coarse flour - the flour fineness is only slightly variable. However, for most whole grain breads, the baker will want a fine flour, not a coarse one.
If you're willing to pay $400 (or more) for a quality electric grain mill that uses the traditional "milling stones" design, take some time to search TFL for many excellent reviews of the major electric mills. Popular brands for this type of mill are Retsel and Fidibus/Komo/Wolfgang (various models available). These mills are usually capable of producing a fine to coarse flour. The major downside is that they usually cannot mill flour from beans without purchasing additional plates and many cannot mill field/dent corn.
PS: often mills that cannot mill field corn can handle popcorn - a number of TFL home-millers have reported good results with corn flour/corn grits milled from popcorn. (I use popcorn if I want to mill flour for cornbread)
An inexpensive manual mill could prove to be more of an effort than the general population is ready to accept.
Think Hercules on steroids to calculate the amount of strength and stamina necessary to mill flour from such a mill. I would look for opinions from those who already own the exact mill which you are contemplating buying
Excellent thank you all for the info. I think I will save up for an electric one with a stone or something similar grinders. The stone is important to me to minimize heat created by friction which increases the rate of oxidation. I would probably use it more for making fresh flours than for cracking grains for brewing. So due to this fact it seems that a mill that can get the flours fine enough for use in bread without having large particulate breaking up the gluten network, while keeping flavors intact is what I am looking for.
I've just noticed that Retsel is now offering a cast iron flywheel with extension bar for its smaller mills. It should make cranking easier.
that I bought second-hand from an older couple a few years ago. It's a stone mill with both electric and hand mill components. I like the additional feature of a hand crank just in case of power outage. I haven't need to use the crank so far... I am not looking forward to using that crank. I have used a small hand crank mill anat least I got big arm muscles! LOL