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Spiesy

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Hey all...

A few months back, I began trying to get all the bits and pieces required to build my grain mill. So far, I have:
  • MiniMill
  • Motor (from Motion Dynamics) with speed controller
  • Appropriate PSU from eBay - and wires
  • Water cooler bottle - plans to use it as a hopper
  • Picking up drive shaft this weekend, have a hole drilled into it to insert an "R" clip
  • Coupler
  • Small cabinet, in which I've mounted the mill - jigsawed a hole (that needs to be made bigger)
  • Still need to get Jiffy Box and grain storage containers.
Far out... I'm into brewing beer, not so much into trawling the four corners of the world and then attempting to assemble a mill stand, hopper and wire it all up. I don't have the background/knowledge, nor a workshop.

Anyone have plans for a hopper that I can throw to someone (metal fabricator?) to get done? I've heard nothing but bad things about the perspex one from CraftBrewer (small volume and fragile).
Or, anyone have one for sale - or one they're prepared to make and sell?

Thanks in advance.
 

brettprevans

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Why go complex. Buy a hopper. Use a drill. Done. Even a $5 plastic downpipe section can be used as a hopper. Check out pics
Getto -
http://aussiehomebrewer.com/gallery/image/4024-img-0153jpg/
http://aussiehomebrewer.com/gallery/image/4801-img-0255jpg/


Now ive mounted it into an old chest of draws. Simple. Theres a pic in the getto equipment thread

The hoppers from craftbrewer or monstermill are great. Mines a monstermill hopper.
Screw motorising it.

Edit. Yhere are quite a few lots of hopper plans on here in the gear and equip section if u want to have a search.
 

Spiesy

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citymorgue2 said:
Why go complex. Buy a hopper. Use a drill. Done. Even a $5 plastic downpipe section can be used as a hopper. Check out pics
Getto -
http://aussiehomebrewer.com/gallery/image/4024-img-0153jpg/
http://aussiehomebrewer.com/gallery/image/4801-img-0255jpg/


Now ive mounted it into an old chest of draws. Simple. Theres a pic in the getto equipment thread

The hoppers from craftbrewer or monstermill are great. Mines a monstermill hopper.
Screw motorising it.

Edit. Yhere are quite a few lots of hopper plans on here in the gear and equip section if u want to have a search.
I have already purchased, acquired and wired the motor, PSU, wires, speed controller - be pretty silly to ditch the motor when the hopper is the only issue.

As I have already mentioned, the only hopper I can find on CB doesn't get a good rap - and only holds 1.5kg of grain. A few people have said that it broke after only a couple of runs.

So the MonsterMill hopper fits the MiniMill? Where did you get it from and how much grain does it hold?
 

QldKev

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I would go the motor over a drill for the mill since you already have it, and when I changed from a drill to a motor my crush quality improved immensely. I would never go back to a drill. I don't have any detailed plans for a hopper, but have a look on my website at what I use. It was very cheap to setup and was the easiest project to build. Although it was a quick and dirty project I threw together as a temporary job, it's still in use several years later. About the only downside of the design is the flat area on the bottom, so at the end of the crush you need to use a paintbrush to sweep any left over grain into the hole.

QldKev
 

Sam England

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I use an old upside down water cooler bottle with the bottom chopped out as my hopper. (Idea stolen from the ghetto thread I think??) Holds just over 5kg of grain and you just need to make an adapter to connect it to your mill. I used a piece of 100mm PVC pipe with a shaped piece of MDF inside it to direct the grain in the right direction. I built my own mill from scratch, so not sure how easy it would be to adapt to suit your mill.

Cheers,
BB
 

Spiesy

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thanks for the advice guys. BB, how did you fix the water cooler bottle to stop it from toppling over?
 

431neb

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If you really CBF and or don't have the skills / equipment to build a hopper I would assume that a pretty cool custom made hopper could be made by any competent sheet metal worker. Anyone who can use a sheet bender and a pop riveter could do it. Know any plumbers? Or get a chippy to make a collar for the water-cooler bottle to fit into.

****! Where are you? I'll do it. I'm bayside /SE subs.

That means I get endless grain cracking though...... I'm paying for it at present.
 

tavas

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Monster Mill sell he hopper. I don't know what mods would be required to fit the Mini Mill.

Holds about 5-6kg. Works very well.
 

Sam England

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Spiesy, I just let the larger diameter sit in the PVC pipe and then used a hole saw to cut a round into the MDF to centralise the neck and had that 100mm or so lower. I'll try and post a pic tomorrow night as SWMBO will kill me if I go out and take photos while guests are here.
 

Kodos

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I've done a lot of searching around for hopper designs recently - I've settled on a design using thin Aluminium sheets, but I was impressed by a couple of more simple designs that might be more what you're looking for:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/building-monster-mill-base-181404/index2.html#post2121897

Basically there's a bit of timber to surround the sides of the mill and hold a 20L plastic bucket in place on a slight angle. The bucket has a hole cut into the bottom, close to one side. If you've already got the table set up, this might be easy to adapt.

Otherwise there's another design here, with good step-by-step instructions. If you don't want to build it, you could give these instructions to a chippy/handyperson for them to do it for you:

http://www.slobrewer.com/howto/building-a-compact-crankandstein-mill-base-and-hopper/

Good luck!
 

Maheel

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i made a hole to suit the water bottle less 1mm and the thread on the neck screwed into the MDF and holds nice and tight

the screw in abilty allows me to adjust the gap between the rollers and the bottle neck to stop grain spilling out "over" the rollers

click it's a vid

 

Feldon

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Here you go.

Someone here called Chad put these plans together (see PDF). Seems pretty good design.

If you toss the plans to a chippy/handyman should be easy to make the four parts for you.

Pieces go together and pull apart without fasteners.

You could use perspex, craftwood, plywood etc.

Edit: Just check the dimensions for the hopper entry point into the top of the mill match before getting it made. Adjust the plan if required. Might be good idea to show the chippy the mill so he knows what the hopper will be fitted to.

View attachment Brads Malt Mill - plans.pdf

Chads Hopper 1.png


Chads Hopper 2.png
 

pk.sax

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What Maheel did.

I just cut a hole into a piece of wood, bolted it to the mill and superglued a big fat bottle cap to the piece of wood, after cutting a hole into it first. A bit of duct tape and staples to make sure the cap doesn't move. Then the bottle with the bottom cut out just screws in as required.
 

Liam_snorkel

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here's my hopper - made from a sheet of that plastic real estate sign stuff (about $6 from bunnings) and gaffer tape inside & out. It has held up strong for over a year and holds over 6kg of grain without breaking a sweat.
PS volume wise it could take probably double that. The most I've had in it is 8kg.

photo (2).JPG
 

Spiesy

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thanks to everyone for their input.

PS: I've enquired about the dimensions of the Mash Monster hopper... if it's suitable, it could either bolt straight on - or if big enough, perhaps drill my own holes to mount to the MiniMill.

Pretty wack that MiniMill don't make their own decent one...
 

Spiesy

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431neb said:
If you really CBF and or don't have the skills / equipment to build a hopper I would assume that a pretty cool custom made hopper could be made by any competent sheet metal worker. Anyone who can use a sheet bender and a pop riveter could do it. Know any plumbers? Or get a chippy to make a collar for the water-cooler bottle to fit into.

****! Where are you? I'll do it. I'm bayside /SE subs.

That means I get endless grain cracking though...... I'm paying for it at present.
lol... Reservoir, mate.
 

Camo6

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Here's some pics of my hopper and minimill. May not be much help cause I don't have any plans. I made the hopper out of mdf then used some aluminium sign board and some shallow cuts with a circular saw to insert the slopes towards the maw of the beast.
I agree that the perspex hopper is a piece of crap. I didn't even get to use it as the perspex cracked on assembly (yes, i'd had a couple and was eagre to play with my new toy).

hopper1.jpg


hopper2.jpg


hopper3.jpg
 

Sam England

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Evening Spiesy,
Sorry for the delay in the pics. Basically a piece of board screwed to the top of the mill with a hole cut to direct the grain. I added a slide so that I can fill the hopper, start my drill and then let the grain go as my drill won't start with grain in the rollers. I put a couple of boards with the appropriate sized hole inside the piece of 100mm DWV pipe to locate the bottle neck and the pipe supports the rest of it. A few screws through the whole lot to keep it all together. I think my mill cost me about $5 if you ignore the 20 lunchtimes in the workshop making it!! All scrap or recycled materials.
Hope this helps.


 

Spiesy

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Camo6 - looks very nice.

Blue Baggers - looks doable, thanks mate!
 

lael

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Blue Baggers said:
Evening Spiesy,
Sorry for the delay in the pics. Basically a piece of board screwed to the top of the mill with a hole cut to direct the grain. I added a slide so that I can fill the hopper, start my drill and then let the grain go as my drill won't start with grain in the rollers. I put a couple of boards with the appropriate sized hole inside the piece of 100mm DWV pipe to locate the bottle neck and the pipe supports the rest of it. A few screws through the whole lot to keep it all together. I think my mill cost me about $5 if you ignore the 20 lunchtimes in the workshop making it!! All scrap or recycled materials.
Hope this helps.
Bluebaggers - does the water fountain jug fit inside a bucket so you can invert it and pack it away nice and small? Would love to be able to use one of those jugs and store it all in the bucket when done!
 

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