MillMaster v MaltZilla Mills

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Grmblz

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I have a 3 roller knurled none geared mill and use the Ozito drill linked to below.
It has a variable speed dial on the trigger and a button to lock the trigger in the "on" position.
I use the slowest possible setting and there is a small issue where you fire the drill up and it's no load speed is quite high, then when you tip in the grain it hunkers down and grinds along at its set slow speed, the issue is with that first bit of grain that hits the rollers before it slows down, so you get maybe a cupful of grain that is obliterated, this hasn't given me any problems that I am aware of, just an observation.
Speed is definitely an issue with knurled rollers, but if mashmaster is to be believed then perhaps fluted rollers are the solution
If mashmaster knock $100 off the price I'll buy one, but for me $400 for just a 2 roller mill is too rich.

This from the manufacturer MillMaster Grain Mill MashMaster Specialised Brewing Equipment

"The fluted rollers deliver a more consistent grist distribution regardless the roller speed of between 120 to 530 RPM"

This recomendation from Mill Master - Mash Master - Mini Grain Mill - FREE SHIPPING AU WIDE

"Three stage planetary gearbox, about 110Nm of torque (the D.C. 200-250w motor kits are only about 20Nm off memory). Under load with full trigger pull at its lowest setting it will operate the mill at about 220RPM and highest setting 530RPM according to the tachometer on my test bench. 1050W Spade Handle Drill"
 
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philrob

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I would be interested to see your grist.


I'm brewing next week. Will take a couple of pics to show what I end up with. Remember that mine is the original larger MillMaster, not the later model smaller one where some of the rollers were replaced with the fluted rollers.
 

hairydog

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I have used the motion Dynamics geared motor in conjunction with a speed controller (seperate circuit board) connected to the motor
and a ebay 12mm coupling for the shafts to to join,a bit of an outlay in bucks but hasnt missed a beat.
 

Gollywog

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I would be interested to see your grist. Certainly the MillMaster is well built and draws grain really well. The only issue that we found is when grain falls in between the flutes you get the grain not going through as small a gap and other pieces of grain get squashed quite a lot as they get squashes by the peaks in the roller. The MillMaster mills quite fast though so if you are milling more than 50kg of grain you might find the time saving to be 10-20 minutes faster than our MaltZilla.

The MaltZilla has much finer roller surface and certainly if you do not clean the mill the surface of the diamond coating can get bogged up eventually so just requires a small clean with wire brush, cloth, compressed air or something. The diamonds practically last forever though and will not go blunt like knurling. Often the knurling on other mills like our three roller grain mill work really great when new but when the knurling goes blunt it doesn't draw as well. The diamond coating gives the most consistent crush as all the grains fall through a very consistent gap size.

So having used both mill types I would say:

MaltZilla Pros
- More consistent crush and very high quality crush
- Includes integrated low rpm gearbox and motor
- Very long lasting diamond coating

MaltZilla Cons
- Mills slower so not as good for large batches when doing more than 20kg of grain
- Requires the odd clean every now and then


MillMaster Pros
- Mills faster and great for large batches of grain 50kg and above
- Fluted rolls never require cleaning and will still draw due to aggressive fluted.
- Heavy duty construction

MillMaster Cons
- No motor included
- Not as consistent crush in our opinion


I would not really recommend using a drill in my opinion. It's hard to control the speed consistently and if you vary the mill speed from batch to batch it's just one more variable you have to contend with on your brew day. So whatever option you go for I highly recommend installing a motor that will deliver a slow consistent RPM. Yes a cordless drill will work but it's hard to get the speed consistent and at a low RPM. Would be keen to hear about what other motors you guys have found for the job? Any good ideas out there?


CONS:

Will get stuck 10-15 times every time you try to mill 5kg of grain. Non moving roller is a HUGE issue with getting stuck.
Do not believe the crap that is an occasional issue.
 

duncbrewer

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One roller free wheels and this is the one that gets adjusted for gap and can get stuck , the other doesn't move unless motor is running.
I don't get 10-15 sticking problem with my Maltzilla. Gap set at 0.75mm and using an 18V battery it mills over 5kg fine. Did get more stops when I used a weak 18V nicad battery ( now recycled ). Never that many though. I do precondition the grain with 2.5% by weight of sprayed water for at least an hour prior to milling.
Also careful check of polarity on the battery connection to ensure the rollers are rotating down away from the hopper. It does work in reverse but not well at all. Saw this error on someones youtube video and the output was pitifully slow as well.
Useful to reverse the polarity briefly if it does get stuck and that has sorted me out most times.
 

Cloud Surfer

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One roller free wheels and this is the one that gets adjusted for gap and can get stuck , the other doesn't move unless motor is running.
I don't get 10-15 sticking problem with my Maltzilla. Gap set at 0.75mm and using an 18V battery it mills over 5kg fine. Did get more stops when I used a weak 18V nicad battery ( now recycled ). Never that many though. I do precondition the grain with 2.5% by weight of sprayed water for at least an hour prior to milling.
Also careful check of polarity on the battery connection to ensure the rollers are rotating down away from the hopper. It does work in reverse but not well at all. Saw this error on someones youtube video and the output was pitifully slow as well.
Useful to reverse the polarity briefly if it does get stuck and that has sorted me out most times.
I’ve seen you mention a couple of times that you precondition your grain. I wonder how many people do that? I can see it’s value, but it’s not something I’ll introduce until I see how the mill works with dry grain.
 

Grok

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I've been using malt conditioning for a while now, it's the way to go I reckon. I only use a standard 2 roller mill with an old 18v B&D Firestorm drill on low ratio setting, it has plenty of grunt for the job.
I think the key is to damp the grain just prior to milling, that way the outer husk gets tough and leathery while the inside is still dry and will crumble a bit as it cracks up. The mostly whole intact husk acts as rice hulls would by providing bulk and space in the mash. If you leave the damp grain for to long before milling, then the whole grain will be toughen up and you will be mashing/squashing the grain like rolled oats. I haven't had any circulation issues since I started to do it.
I'm thinking about converting an old clothes dryer to a grain tumbler for this purpose, but haven't got around to it yet, getting by with a hand sprayer and slowly tipping the grain into a tub whilst spraying and mixing just before milling, then straight into the mash tun and fill from bottom up.
 
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MHB

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Malt conditioning is interesting, it has its advantages but you do need to be cracking and mashing in pretty short order or it can cause problems too.

Ideally you want the husks to take up moisture but not to change the moisture content of the endosperm.
The fastest way to do this is with hot water, or steam. These days with so many small cheap hand held steam cleaners on the market it’s something worth looking at.
I would be inclined to try adding about 1% to the mass of malt, should add enough to get the ~20% moisture increase recommended into the husks. A bit of experimenting and a decent set of scales should make it easy to see how much moisture is being taken up. Once you know your procedure it just becomes adding a known amount of water to the steamer per kg of malt to be conditioned.
Just stirring the malt with a steam wand would work. Might be a bit easier to fit a wand to a steam cleaner than, to modify up a tumble dryer.
Mark
 

Grok

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Just feel the grain with your hands if spraying with water, you'll soon get the hang of it.
 

duncbrewer

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I believe breweries put steam from some area of the brewery thru the grain on its way to the mill. Difficult for us and they are using a good steam source, not sure how powerful those steam cleaners are.
Old clothes dryers used to be called washing lines in my neck of the woods so not sure how that would help to condition the grain, but if it was a rainy day should work fine.
 

Cloud Surfer

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I got my MillMaster set up, and have started experimenting with different mill gaps and speeds. I've finished with it set at 1.1mm with the feeler gauge and about 120rpm on the drill. Though I think I might slow the drill down even more.

Set at 1.1mm it has split almost all the husks in half, with not many fully intact husks, but at least it's made virtually no flour. So I gave conditioning a try, and the milled grain looks totally different. Looks like I've got about 90% of the husks still intact, but when I give them a rub they break up into a few pieces. After milling, the dry grain looks quite compact, while the conditioned grain looks "light and fluffy' if I can use that description.

So I think I've got the mill set correctly for use with the conditioned malt. If I was going to run the dry malt through, it looks to me like I would have to open the gap up a little more. I know Phil you use 1.1mm, but maybe you get away with that gap because you hand mill. Anyway, I'll know in a few days after I blow 15kg of malt on a Barley Wine.

MillMaster (2).JPG
 

sp0rk

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I would be interested to see your grist. Certainly the MillMaster is well built and draws grain really well. The only issue that we found is when grain falls in between the flutes you get the grain not going through as small a gap and other pieces of grain get squashed quite a lot as they get squashes by the peaks in the roller. The MillMaster mills quite fast though so if you are milling more than 50kg of grain you might find the time saving to be 10-20 minutes faster than our MaltZilla.

The MaltZilla has much finer roller surface and certainly if you do not clean the mill the surface of the diamond coating can get bogged up eventually so just requires a small clean with wire brush, cloth, compressed air or something. The diamonds practically last forever though and will not go blunt like knurling. Often the knurling on other mills like our three roller grain mill work really great when new but when the knurling goes blunt it doesn't draw as well. The diamond coating gives the most consistent crush as all the grains fall through a very consistent gap size.

So having used both mill types I would say:

MaltZilla Pros
- More consistent crush and very high quality crush
- Includes integrated low rpm gearbox and motor
- Very long lasting diamond coating

MaltZilla Cons
- Mills slower so not as good for large batches when doing more than 20kg of grain
- Requires the odd clean every now and then


MillMaster Pros
- Mills faster and great for large batches of grain 50kg and above
- Fluted rolls never require cleaning and will still draw due to aggressive fluted.
- Heavy duty construction

MillMaster Cons
- No motor included
- Not as consistent crush in our opinion


I would not really recommend using a drill in my opinion. It's hard to control the speed consistently and if you vary the mill speed from batch to batch it's just one more variable you have to contend with on your brew day. So whatever option you go for I highly recommend installing a motor that will deliver a slow consistent RPM. Yes a cordless drill will work but it's hard to get the speed consistent and at a low RPM. Would be keen to hear about what other motors you guys have found for the job? Any good ideas out there?
Not going to include the cracked plastic housing as a maltzilla con?
 

KegLand-com-au

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Not going to include the cracked plastic housing as a maltzilla con?
Given that it's only one cracked housing in about 1000 units sold it's probably not really a significant concern. With that said even if you did get a mill and somehow cracked the strong moulding then it would be replace by our customer service team fairly quick.
 

Grmblz

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Nice neat setup, but I wonder about the side load on the drive shaft bearing/sleeve, which is not an issue with a drill.
How tight does the belt have to be to prevent slippage?
Alternators have a small ball bearing and seem to last forever at quite high tensions but a lot of mills have bushes, something to keep an eye on maybe.
 

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