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Mashmaster Mini Gap Problem

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bignath

"Grains don't grow up to be chips, son"
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Howdy brewers,

got a problem i'd like some advice/opinions on.

Over the last several brewdays, my mill (mashmaster mini) has been struggling with pulling the grain through. Powered by an Ozito Spade Handle drill, trying to maintain approx 150-200rpms....

It's been driving me nuts for months, i'd been thinking that it had been a problem with my hopper (plastic water bottle from a water cooler).

Previously i'd been crushing at 1.0-1.15mm gap and all had been going well. But recently, it had been struggling with pulling the grain through, and the grain has been bouncing around on the geared rollers.

Today i spent some time trying to finally sort out the issue, or atleast come up with a solution in the short term, which i seem to have done.

I have found that by increasing the gap size to around 1.2-1.4mm gap, it pulls through fantastically. Really quick, just like it used to. So my plan, and i've done a few 1kg runs to test it, is to run the grain through twice at this setting, and the result is a beautiful crush with a nice blend of flour (maybe 20-30%) and the rest, the husks split in half. Should go well i reckon.

Now heres the question.....for me to have to resort to using a gap setting this wide, does that indicate that the knurling on my mill is fading? I've had it for maybe 2 years, as i sold my previous mill (crankendstein) to a brewing mate, so i could get the mashmaster.

If this sounds about right (fading knurling) how do i get it fixed? I bought it from another brewer on this forum, so i'm assuming that there is no way that it's a warrantable repair due to either or both of the time frame and that i didn't buy from a dealer....

Know anyone that has had this issue??

all opinions appreciated.

Cheers n beers,

Nath
 

Crusty

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I probably can't help too much Nath as my MiniMill is fairly new & I am running my mill with the same drill as you. My gap is set at the thickness of a credit card which is about 0.9mm & I haven't had any problems that you speak of. As far as the rollers losing their bite or knurling, I reckon that would be near impossible unless you were crushing rocks with it, even then I think it would stand up to the challenge. Do you think it is certain recipes that tend to make it play up or individual grains that are causing the problem? I notice some grains are harder to mill & others just slip through with ease. I'd give Ross ( CraftBrewer ) or someone that sells them a buzz & pick their brains, hopefully they can shed some light on what's going on.
 

tavas

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Are your rollers full of caked fluor? Maybe give them a clean and see how that goes.
 

QldKev

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Are your rollers full of caked fluor? Maybe give them a clean and see how that goes.
That's what I'd be looking at, have you crushed a load of crystal straight? it clogs them up real good.

QldKev
 

booargy

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I have found ale malt is a bitch to crush, you have to feather the drill trigger. however since opening the gap to 1.4mm(i think) my efficiency hasn't suffered. It also forms a better grain bed.
 

bignath

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Are your rollers full of caked fluor? Maybe give them a clean and see how that goes.
Nup. I have recently got into the habit of going the rollers with a wire brush in between brews to try to stop this from happening. Hasn't made a huge difference.
Last time i cleaned it, earlier this week, i got everything back to where it pretty much looked like a brand new mill.

have you crushed a load of crystal straight? it clogs them up real good.
I usually have a small amount of crystal in my recipes, maybe 100-150g per average 4kg grain bill. Once again, cleaned in between brews so not sure the crystal is the problem.

Bouncing grain usually indicates rollers are rotating too fast.
That's the very first thing i tried. Makes no difference how slow i go. And i mean slow. I'm talking approx. 60rpm and the grain often sits there bouncing around. Did exactly that to me this afternoon before i gave up on brewing, and thought i'd better spend some time trying to fix this problem for good. As the last of the grain (1kg test run that took in excess of 6mins to crush) it literally just sat there bouncing around between the rollers.

I have found ale malt is a bitch to crush, you have to feather the drill trigger. however since opening the gap to 1.4mm(i think) my efficiency hasn't suffered. It also forms a better grain bed.
My "base malt" that i typically use is BB Ale Malt.
This problem happens with the base malt, carapils, crystal, wheat malt, munich.......they all bounce around.
I'm hoping that by opening up my mill, i experience the same result as you (negligible eff loss, better grain bed etc) and an easier crushing process.

The thing that has me stumped though, is the change in result recently pointing to something not being right....just wish i knew what it was.

Maybe the mashmaster mini's just tend to work better at a larger gap setting......i dunno....
 

mr_tyreman

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make sure the rollers are perfectly parallel to each other....if they taper in anyway it will severely hinder its ability to feed through.

make sure its accurate on the rollers, not just the marks on the side of the mill


hope you sort it out
 

bignath

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make sure the rollers are perfectly parallel to each other....if they taper in anyway it will severely hinder its ability to feed through.

make sure its accurate on the rollers, not just the marks on the side of the mill


hope you sort it out

yep, checked that too. Used a feeler guage to set the gap, checked at both ends.
 

Online Brewing Supplies

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This will not solve your problem but it will make your crush work.
Slightly dampen the grain before milling, also helps to preserve the husk intact.
Nev
 

bullsneck

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Sorry if I insult your intelligence but its worth asking... Are you sure you have the mill rolling the right way?
 

bignath

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Sorry if I insult your intelligence but its worth asking... Are you sure you have the mill rolling the right way?
No offence taken.. and yep, she's turning the right way.
 

huez

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reviving an old thread as i'm having exactly the same issue with my mashmaster and i've only had it 6months, 2 of those months i wasn't even brewing because i was in the process of moving. As it stands its the single most pointless piece of equipment i've bought. Has anyone else had this issue? i've resorted to milling it twice, once at 1.5mm and then wind it in as at 1.5 some of the grain is still whole. I bought the mashmaster because of all the great reviews, at the moment its looking like an expensive paperweight. I'm going to email ross at craftbrewer and see if he has heard of any people having the same issue
 

huez

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Just an update for anyone that finds this thread and is having the same issue. I contacted craftbrewer and also francis from mashmaster who were both brilliant to deal with. I encourage anyone that has the mill and thinks their knurling has worn to quickly to contact francis. He's had one other person with the same problem, which could be the original poster here? He offered to send me new rollers but i decided to swap my mill with craftbrewer as i would have to wait a month for the rollers.

Seriously though i couldn't fault mashmaster or craftbrewer on their customer service and how they handled it.
 

camstans

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Im so glad i found this thread! i just had the exact same problem on the weekend and it was driving me crazy.
i cleaned the rollers and adjusted the gap a lot but my usual credit card size gap pulled the grains through very slowly and the last ones just danced around on the rollers.
ive probably only put about 30-40 21L brews through this and was wondering also do these rollers get blunt??
i will be crushing again next weekend and will try the bigger gap, but running it through twice seems like something i shouldnt really have to do considering the cost of the mill, which i spent the money because i wanted quality.
thanks huez
 

huez

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camstans said:
Im so glad i found this thread! i just had the exact same problem on the weekend and it was driving me crazy.
i cleaned the rollers and adjusted the gap a lot but my usual credit card size gap pulled the grains through very slowly and the last ones just danced around on the rollers.
ive probably only put about 30-40 21L brews through this and was wondering also do these rollers get blunt??
i will be crushing again next weekend and will try the bigger gap, but running it through twice seems like something i shouldnt really have to do considering the cost of the mill, which i spent the money because i wanted quality.
thanks huez
Sorry buddy only just seen this post. How did you go? There's another thread with a few people with the same issue as well
 

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