Monday, November 1, 2010

Selecting a Hand Grain Mill

I've had a couple hundred pounds of wheat since August but have been limited in what I can cook with it: blender pancakes, blender waffles, and disgusting hot cereal. Finally the day has come that I get to buy a grain mill. You can buy electric grain mills, hand grain mills, and ones that convert either way. I eventually want to have the capability to go electric for the time and labor savings, but it is most important to have a hand grain mill first. Otherwise TEOTWAWKI could happen and the only way my shiny electric grain mill would be useful is if it just so happened to grind some wheat as I threw it to the ground in frustration with my lack of foresight.

But what mill to pick? There a huge selection available and it's not like I can just walk into a dealership for a test drive. (Not in my neck of the woods, anyway.) So I did A LOT of reading. I read catalogs, reviews, and online listings. I read some more. I cross-referenced charts and watched videos. I gathered so much data that I practically overloaded. Here's some of what I looked at:

A comparison chart of hand and electric grain mills

The selection that Lehman's carries. Notes and reviews about several types

Purchasing the right grinder by Walton Feed Co. listings and reviews

Grain Mill Comparison Chart (the "German made" one is the popular Family Grain Mill)

To my mind, there are three main considerations in selecting a grain mill:
  1. Coarseness/fineness of end product - Will it make a true fine flour?
  2. Ease of use - How hard is it to turn? How long does it take?
  3. Durability - Will it stand the test of time?
Not to mention

    4.   Price

I read about el cheapo grain mills. 

Victorio Grain Mill, approximately $69

I carefully considered the virtues of the Family Grain Mill and the Country Living Grain Mills, both of which can be motorized.

Country Living Grain Mill, base price $395

I compared the Lehman's Best Grain mill with the Wonder Mill Junior Deluxe.

Lehman's Best, $169.95

Wonder Mill Junior Deluxe, $199.95

I drooled over this Diamant grain mill that costs more than my first car did.

Diamant Grain Mill, $1299

Which one did I select? And will I be pleased with my choice? You'll have to wait and see. My order is in. :)

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