There was grain in the hopper of my brand new mill when I opened the package.
Before we ship a Country Living mill we hand grind a test sample of flour to ensure that the mill is working properly. We provide a sample of this flour in a plastic baggy, and you may find some of the remaining wheat berries at the bottom of the hopper.
The edges of the grinding plates on my brand new mill already show signs of wear.
Each set of grinding plates undergoes a number of machining processes to ensure that they will work properly. One of these steps involves machining a flat ridge around the edge of the grinding plates. The central area of the rotating grinding plate is responsible for breaking up the grain and the flattened area on the outside performs the function of milling the grain into a fine flour. This flattened area is necessary for proper mill function, and is intentionally machined.
My mill is difficult to grind.
A) Check Mill Mounting.
Make sure that your Country Living mill is sturdily mounted to something that is attached to either the floor or the wall. It takes a fair amount of leverage to turn the mill and if it is not firmly mounted extra effort will be required to hold the mill still. Even mounting the mill on a sturdy table will be problematic, because the table will have a tendency to move around. We suggest a counter or a workbench which is built or screwed into the wall.
B) The Power Bar. The power bar extension handle
reduces the effort of turning the mill 40%
My mill grinds extremely slowly
A) Check Grains. Most often this problem occurs when soft, oily, or moist grains are being ground. These clog up the patterns of the grinding plates and make grinding a laborious and interminable job. Even hard grains like wheat, spelt, and corn can collect moisture during storage and gum up grinding plates. The best test to determine if your grains have collected moisture is to throw a pan of your grain into the oven at 150 degrees for 45 minutes, and then try grinding that grain. If there is a noticeable or miraculous improvement then you know that moisture is the problem.
Clogged grinding plates can be cleaned by taking off the adjustment knob and rotating grinding plate and using a stiff toothbrush or even a wire brush.
The Country Living mill is not recommended for grinding oily grains, seeds or nuts.
B) Replace Worn Grinding Plates. As grinding plates wear they will began to produce flour more slowly. A healthy set of grinding plates should have grooves radiating from the center of the plate out to the edge of the plate. When these grooves began to disappear on the outer edges it may be time to consider replacing your grinding plates.
My grain mill will start grinding a fine flour, but eventually the flour becomes coarser.
The most likely problem is that the adjustment knob is slipping. Below are some solutions to the problem:
A) Clean the Adjustment Knob. Fine flour can get in the threads of the adjustment knob and serve as a lubricant, causing you to lose your adjustment. Unscrew the adjustment knob and clean out the inside threads with a toothbrush. Also clean the threads on the stainless steel shaft.
B) Create more Friction. Use a piece of fine sandpaper to roughen the threads of the stainless steel shaft. Often this will create enough friction so that the adjustment knob will no longer slip.
C) Lock the Adjustment Knob in Place. After adjusting the knob to the fineness of grind that you desire, spin on a 5/8 nut, locking the knob into place. This is an especially good solution when the mill is motorized, hooked to an exercycle.