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Blodwen_1 (Blodwen_1)
Senior Member
Username: Blodwen_1

Post Number: 125
Registered: 06-2003
Posted on Sunday, October 12, 2003 - 10:17 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

For the last 3 years I've been using a small "Capresso" coffee grinder, the motor died today and I'm in the market for a new one, possibly with larger capacity. Anyone have any good suggestions for a grinder which will be used to grind things other than coffee?
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Dung LOver Mush (Poopey666)
Intermediate Member
Username: Poopey666

Post Number: 71
Registered: 05-2003
Posted on Monday, October 13, 2003 - 06:06 am:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I would go to the thrift store and get one of those hand cranked all american meat grinders.

Grinds anything you want from a grain to a powder. Cheap too
The flower which grows best on graves is oblivion.
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sleestak (Sleestak)
Senior Member
Username: Sleestak

Post Number: 125
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Monday, October 13, 2003 - 01:52 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have been using a Braun for about 3 years now, it's still kickin'. On top of my grinding, we grind real coffee beans with it almost every night. I think it was around $30 and it has been well worth it.
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Jorneyer (Jorneyer)
Senior Member
Username: Jorneyer

Post Number: 207
Registered: 01-2003
Posted on Monday, October 13, 2003 - 02:19 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I use a Moulinex every morning and a Braun for my BRF. The moulinex is about three yrs old. It's nice but check the cord; the part where it plugs into the wall is crap, after three years anyhow. But they put better plugs on stuff now.
gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha
gone, gone, gone beyond, completely exposed, so-be-it
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Machine (Machine)
Senior Member
Username: Machine

Post Number: 178
Registered: 07-2003
Posted on Monday, October 13, 2003 - 03:09 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I broke a couple of coffee grinders trying to grind BRF..
ended up with an Osterizer and
it works great at a much higher volume.
Osterizer is a blender made by Oster.
"Count not him among your friends who will retail your privacies to the world."
-Publilius Syrus
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Jorneyer (Jorneyer)
Senior Member
Username: Jorneyer

Post Number: 214
Registered: 01-2003
Posted on Tuesday, October 14, 2003 - 02:43 am:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I use a Bodum.
gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha
gone, gone, gone beyond, completely exposed, so-be-it
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Blodwen_1 (Blodwen_1)
Senior Member
Username: Blodwen_1

Post Number: 128
Registered: 06-2003
Posted on Tuesday, October 14, 2003 - 02:50 am:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Grinders 101

The purpose of this section is to let you in on all the little things that you don't normally hear about coffee grinders.

1.How Grinders Affect the Coffee
2.The Size of the Grind; What Do You Need?
3.Burr vs. Blade
4.High Speed vs. Low Speed Grinders
5.Dosing and Non-Dosing Grinders
6.Flat Plate Burrs vs. Conical Burrs
7.Stepped vs. Stepless Adjustment

1. How Grinders Affect the CoffeeUpload (Adjusting the doser)
Grinding coffee is a violent thing. The coffee is taken from its nice friendly home in its bag or can and put into a bean hopper, which by itself is not a bad place. But then the grinder is turned on and you immediately hear the sound of the motor and the burrs spinning wildly as the coffee starts to be ground into small particles. This is where the action takes place and is the start of your coffee experience. The final result of your espresso/coffee will depend upon how evenly your coffee is ground and it's final temperature after grinding. Yes that's right, as the coffee is ground it will pick up heat and the more heat your coffee picks up the more adversely it will affect your final product. If you are only grinding enough for a double shot the coffee will not pick up much heat from any grinder. The more coffee you grind the hotter the coffee gets due to the grinding burrs and surrounding parts getting hotter. Another possible byproduct of grinding coffee may be the dreaded static charge that can cause the ground coffee to literally jump out of the ground coffee container. You would have to see it to believe it. Have you ever noticed your hair standing on end after donning your wool sweater? No it's not a ghost, it's a static charge. The static charge forms when the coffee is ground and then forced through a chute and into a receptacle. Factors that effect this ghost like phenomenon are the speed of the grinding burrs, the way in which the coffee exits through the chute, humidity, temperature and the coffee itself. It is pretty hard to control most of these factors but it is easy to control which grinder you purchase.

The Inside Scoop
As a rule, the grinders that produce the most static charge and add the most heat to your fresh ground coffee are the high-speed grinders.

2. The Size of the Grind
What we are talking about now is how fine or how coarse your coffee is ground. The size of the grind you will need is directly related to the type of equipment used in brewing your coffee, how fresh the coffee is, and how it is roasted. Different types of espresso/coffee machines are designed to extract flavor and aroma from the coffee in a different way. Therefore they require a different size grind. The following will provide guidelines to help you understand what you will need to get the best out of your espresso/coffee machine.
Grind types:
French Press = Very Coarse
Drip Coffee = Coarse
Espresso machine w/ crema enhancing device = Medium to Medium Fine. If you were to rub the coffee between your fingers it would feel like sugar, maybe a little finer.
Commercial Style Espresso Machines = Very fine, almost like powder. You will find that old dry coffee must be ground finer than fresh roasted coffee.
Turkish Coffee = Very Fine. It must be ground to a powder.

3. Burr Vs. Blade
What is a Burr Grinder?Upload

The burrs are the part of the grinder that crushes the coffee beans into a uniform size which is essential for creating an awesome espresso/coffee. There are two different burr grinders, flat plate or conical. The Conical burr grinders have two cone shaped burrs with ridges that grind/crush the coffee. The flat plate burr grinders have two identical and parallel rings that are serrated on the side that faces the other. Both burr grinders have one stationary burr while the motor turns the other. The beans are drawn in between the two burrs and crushed into a uniform size. Both types of grinders are known for their flexibility and quality. You really can't go wrong with either one, but please read on about the high and low speed burr grinders for the other part of the equation.

What is a Blade Grinder?Upload

Blade grinders don't grind consistently for making quality coffee drinks. They have a blade similar to that of a propeller that chops the coffee beans. The fineness of the grind is determined by how long you let the grinder operate via a built in timer. The longer it grinds the finer the coffee becomes. The negatives of a blade grinder are that the grind can vary from powder to chunks and the coffee picks up a static charge, which will make it stick to just about everything and is therefore is very messy.

4. High Speed vs. Low Speed Grinders
High speed

High-speed burr grinders may still heat the coffee like a blade grinder, but offer the user more control in deciding on the grind size. They also produce a pretty consistent grind. These grinders are generally referred to as "direct drive" grinders because the motor is attached directly to the burrs causing them to turn at the same speed. Although a high-speed burr grinder may be fairly noisy and cause some static they are still the best choice in the $69.00 to $107.00 range. Due to the high speed that these grinders operate at, they use flat plate burrs.

Low Speed

At the top of the list are the low-speed burr grinders. Since this type is the "Cadillac" of grinders, once you get one you'll never go back. Low-speed grinders offer the advantages of little or no static charge, very little heat, quiet operation and the motor does not bog down or clog up when grinding very fine. Low-speed grinders also come with either flat burrs or conical burrs and can be broken down into two categories, "direct drive" or "gear reduction" grinders.

Gear Reduction: The gear reduction grinders have a high-speed motor that is hooked into a set of gears that reduce the speed of the burrs. Much like the gears of a bicycle which, when going up hill are shifted down to cause the rider's legs to move quickly while the bicycle moves up hill slowly. Although these tend to be noisier than the direct drive style, they get the job done without the motor bogging down.

Direct Drive: The high-end direct drive grinders are the most expensive but are also the best grinders available for home or light commercial use. The low-speed motor is connected directly to the burrs so that they spin at the same speed. A lesser quality motor would bog down under the load but these high quality motors are designed to handle the load with ease. Because they spin at a low RPM, minimal heat or static is created. The final bonus is that they are whisper quiet.

5. Dosing & Non-Dosing grinders Upload
Dosing Grinders
Dosing grinders are designed to collect the ground coffee into what we call the ground coffee container and then, with the pull of a handle, dispense it directly into your receptacle, such as a portafilter.

The ground coffee container looks like a pie that is cut into six equally shaped pieces called sections. The ground coffee exits the grinding burrs through the chute and drops into these sections. These sections rotate around and when they reach the front of the grinder the coffee drops through a hole and into your receptacle. The rotation is controlled by means of a handle (one pull turns it one sixth of a rotation). The amount of coffee that the sections can hold is usually about 6 to 7 grams (one shot). With the Mazzer Mini and Pasquini Moka you can adjust the dose per pull to around 5.5 to 9 grams. Let's say that you want to grind just enough coffee for a double shot. You turn the grinder on and let it fill up one section and then pull the handle and let it fill up another section. You then turn off the grinder and pull on the handle three times. It will take three pulls to get the section under the chute all the way around to the front where it drops out of the bottom. You would think that you would have dispensed the perfect amount of coffee. It may, but don't count on it. You may have to pull a few more times to get the loose coffee that spilled over the edge of the sections. And if you are only grinding enough for the morning brew you don't want to grind too much extra. Every espresso machine and every filter basket that receives this ground coffee is a little different. It is best to get to know your machine and how much coffee works best in the filter basket that you are using. Fill the filter basket to the proper level and then tamp it. If you go over the level that you want you can run your finger over the top and take out as much coffee as needed to achieve the proper amount. Once you learn how your dosing grinder works, and as long as you can adapt to it, you will have a long healthy relationship. If you can use your eye to judge what the proper level is when filled loosely it will be pretty easy to use any dosing grinder. Another thing to keep in mind is that coffee just wants to make a mess. No matter how hard you try to keep if off the counter it has a mind of its own and will find a way around even the most anal person's defenses. The action of pulling the handle and the sections rotating will probably cause a little coffee to miss your portafilter.

Non-Dosing Grinders

There are a few different styles of non-dosing grinders. Some such as the Isomac and the non-dosing Innova are designed to grind directly into a portafilter from an espresso machine. The Solis grinders can grind either in to its own removable ground coffee container or directly into your portafilter. The Saeco MC2002 grinds into its ground coffee container that is removable and also has a trap door that you can open to scoop out the coffee. The Capresso Burr Grinder Select and Gaggia MM grind into their own ground coffee containers, which much be removed to access the coffee.

6. Flat Plate Burrs & Conical Burrs
Both style of burrs are used in home and commercial grinders. They produce a consistent grind worthy of any high end or home espresso machine. The conical burrs are usually used on the very low-speed gear reduction grinders. The flat plate burrs are used on all qualities of grinders, from the low priced high-speed grinders all the way up to the low-speed direct drive commercial grade grinders.

7. Stepped vs. Stepless Adjustment

There are two different styles of grind adjustments on our grinders.
"Stepped" adjustment and the not so popular and more advanced "Stepless adjustment".

There are two styles of stepped adjustment grinders. They are the "Self Holding" and "Lever Release." The reason that manufactures make "stepped" adjustments is because they need a way to lock the setting into place after the adjustment is made. Otherwise, as the grinder operates the grind setting could change.

On the "Self Holding" grinders you will either turn the bean hopper or an adjustment knob to adjust your grind setting. As you turn it you will hear and feel a "click" as the setting is locked into place. With each click you are changing the fineness setting one level. These include grinders from Gaggia, Saeco and Capresso.

On "Lever Release" grinders, such as the Rancilio Rocky and the Pasquini Moka, you have to push down a release lever and then turn the bean hopper to adjust the fineness setting. You will not hear any clicks as it turns. When you let go of the release lever it will snap into place and lock the bean hopper/setting into place.

With stepless adjustment grinders you have an infinite number of setting you can adjust your grind to. You can adjust the setting as little or as much as you like. There are no preset spots that the grind setting will stop at like the on grinders with stepped adjustment.

When you adjust your grind setting finer or towards the coarse setting you may feel and/or hear a click. That click is usually associated with a number of a grind setting or some kind of visual clue that tells you what setting it is on.

This material was copied and modified from WholeLottalove.com

After a lot of reading and skimming through user complaints and tips I have come to a few conclusions.

The small grinders are good for small amounts and general last for 2-6 years, they produce an uneven grind which is ok for most peoples non-coffee grinding.
The most reported cheap "blade grinder" brand so far that lasts the longest are brands made by Braun. I have seen this brand name repeated over and over again for it's life and durability.

Seems to me that any grinder purchased that isn't a basic "blade grinder" for around $20.00, and isn't above $150.00 is real gamble. Everyone of these machines that ran $50.00, or 100.00, all jammed, spit grounds everywhere, or are uncleanable. There of course may be exceptions but I noticed a less complaints with models from Gaggia running $150.00, once you hit $365.00 range most will last for ever, why not test the warrantee out and grind cappi with it.

Questions... can you tell me more about these "hand cranked all american meat grinders" how fine do they grind. Does anyone use a hand crank spice grinder? Are there any which are fast efficient, and keep you're grindings from flying all over the place?

I haven't seen any "Osterizer" coffee grinders, is it a coffee grinder, how does it grind?

I believe RogerRabbit often cases with coffee grounds for PH balance, and I'm thinking of tring it myself real soon.
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Scotsman (Barrowland)
Senior Member
Username: Barrowland

Post Number: 198
Registered: 06-2002
Posted on Tuesday, October 14, 2003 - 03:47 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

i picked up a blade grinder
for 5 at my local market
it's good for rice to
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Blodwen_1 (Blodwen_1)
Senior Member
Username: Blodwen_1

Post Number: 129
Registered: 06-2003
Posted on Wednesday, October 15, 2003 - 12:47 am:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The blade grinder (electric hand mill)

The cheapest and typically owned electric coffee grinder. This particular model is by Braun. They last 2-6 years, typically the motor burns out.

A Dosing Grinder

This is not what you want to purchase, this machine is for small amounts of finely ground espresso.

Here are some examples of a typical grinders you will find on the market.

Typically they are engineered to be cheap and stylish, most of the models are designed with plastic breakable parts.
Prices range from around $20-150.00 some do the job for a while but there is a very good chance of getting junk. The last is made by Braun for about $50.00 and still inferior to their simple blade design.

A Stepless

If you're serious about grinding and want to be able to grind most anything with power here is the type of $400 dollar grinder you want to be sizing up.

Here are some hand grinders I know little about.

A Hand Coffee grinder.

All I can gather is there is potential for preground material to shoot out of the top and ground material to miss drop drawer.

Herb Grinder

Although it sounds alluring, the bottom grinding system looks like one a nut mill uses, it looks like it will shred more than grind. It's also $3.95, might be good for straw.

Hand Meat Grinder

This just doesn't seem appropriate for any type of spice-type grinding.

There is another method similar to what Machine is talking about. It would be very simple to blend a couple cups of material empty the contents into an electric blade style grinder, while you're blender continues to grind. Still there is chance of loosing ground material, and it can be a long process. While blending brown rice in a blender is totally viable since the rice doesn't have to be finely ground, it will not do for grinding mushrooms, and cacti for capsules, and grinding other fun materials.

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