There has been some spooky news in our country lately. This has given Fern and I a reason to think about our homestead situation. So, this morning Fern went out and dragged in a product that we bought a couple of years ago and have never used. We have lots of things like that. Things we have stocked up on and never used. But, today was the day to try out one of our manual grain grinders.
This product is a Wonder Junior and it's manufactured by Wonder Mill. Our electric grain mill is also made by Wonder Mill. The electric one turns at significantly greater
speed, since the hand mill is rated at one human power. It's not rated the highest of the hand grain mills, and it's not made for industrial or agricultural purposes. But it was rated consistently among the good to better hand grain mills. So here is the results of our test today.
Assembly was pretty straightforward. It is durable enough that when I tightened all of the pieces down, nothing fractured or warped. The instructions are self explanatory. They're written in plain English, by someone whose first language is English. The reason I mention that is I buy some radios that the manuals are in English, but you can tell it's not the writers first language. Back to the mill.
Okay. It's assembled. Instructions are easy to follow. Here goes 1 cup of hard red winter wheat, and you know who starts cranking. The instructions say that if the grinding is real difficult, then release a little pressure off of the grinding plates, we did, and cranking was much easier. But the flour was still too large of a grit, which the instructions addressed. We were to grind it once, resulting in a more coarse flour, tighten the grinding plates and re-grind it a second time. The instructions were correct. It took a little bit more time, but it was much easier to grind, both times. So, again, the instructions were right.
|I am so funny.|
So, what I did was after removing the handle, I replaced the retainer bolt back into the auger, found the appropriate socket size, which I will share with you is 13mm, and that little gizmo turned just fine with my battery operated hand drill.
We have since ordered the little gizmo bit attachment thingy, that is made especially for this hand drill type purpose. Remember, I lost the first one. I do believe a larger drill, like a 1/2 horse, with an adjustable trigger for speed control, would be a better choice. That's what I will use next time. But, it worked just fine grinding the wheat. I have a large, older electric hand drill that I use for much heavier jobs when I really want to twist the head off of something. Back to the mill.
This mill comes with two sets of grinding plates. One set of grinding burrs is for dry items like corn, wheat, barley, things with a much, much lower oil content. The other set of grinding burrs are made of stainless steel, which is made for things like peanuts and other oil producing type seeds or grains. So, if you're into making peanut butter, stainless steel is the way to go. Or, if you choose, you can use the stainless steel all the time. But if you do mess up and use the stone burrs for something like peanut butter, it will not ruin them, you will just have to spend a little time washing them with a very coarse type brush.
After having used the mill, some of the flour was a little difficult to contain. While we were ordering the hand drill bit attachment, we also purchased a flour guard. This should make clean up significantly easier, not that it was difficult at all though.
Overall, I found the hand mill easy to assemble, the instructions were easy to follow, we only ground a dry type grain, which was wheat. It gave us a nice flour, and it was easy to disassemble and clean. I can't speak to it's long term durability, but it appears to be well made from durable products. I do have another hand mill that I have also never used. It comes from my Y2K days. And it's not going to get used in the near future. The Wonder Junior made by Wonder Mill appears to be a good quality product. If you have any questions about this particular product, I hope this helps. And, yes, I have the ability to recharge my hand drill batteries if the electricity goes off, because I know somebody is going to ask that question. At my age, I would not want to crank this mill enough times to make four or five loaves of bread.
If you have items, like I do, that you have bought, put in storage and never used, now is a good time to try them out. You never know when you are going to need them, and I'm as guilty as anybody for not having tried all of my stored items. But that's just the way it is. I would certainly encourage you, if you haven't, to pick out one and make sure it works. Now I'm going to go find the Ben-Gay, my arm hurts. Just kidding.
We'll talk more later, Frank.