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Old 09-08-2008, 06:36 PM   #1
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Default Motorizing my Barley Crusher

My first two batches through the barley crusher with drill power had too much flour come through. I figure it is a good excuse to use an old 1/3 HP/1725 rpm motor I have in the basement.

So far the plan is to use a 1.5" (Pitch Dia. 1.05") and a 14" (Pitch Dia. 13.55") pulleys from Grainger.

that will bring the RPM's down to (1725 * 1.05) / 13.55 = 133 RPM, whcih should cut down on the flour that is produced.

For the physics types, how far out should I put the motor to avoid the belt slipping during "normal" use grinding grain?

I've looked at this site: Notes on Pulleys and Belts which has a pretty cool calcualtor, but I haven't had physics for years and I'm not sure what numbers are important and which aren't.

Thoughts?

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Old 09-08-2008, 07:34 PM   #2
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A little flour is a good thing. Did you get a stuck sparge?
If I got a stuck sparge from a bit to much flour, I would first open the gap on my crusher a bit, that will alleviate the flour problem better than the speed at which it is crushed.
Not knocking your excuse to build more equipment. Hopefully someone that knows about pulleys will come along and help with that aspect.

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Old 09-08-2008, 07:46 PM   #3
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the flour made what looked like fulffy clouds in the wort as I was was chilling the first batch on Sat. The second batch we filtered through an old set of pantyhose. There was less "cloud" in the second one, but there was still more than I was use to.

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Old 09-08-2008, 08:31 PM   #4
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I used a Monster Mill for the rollers on mine, but it is the same idea you will just have to get some kind of bushing to adapt to your 3/8" shaft. Anyway, I also had a 1/3 hp 1725 rpm motor and decided to hook it up because the drill was slipping all the time and to keep it from jamming I had to run it way too fast. It is the best thing I have ever done.

I used 1.5" and 10" sheaves, so using a 3L belt put me between 189-190rpm. I don't know what the barley crusher is rated at but the monster mill is made to run between 150-250rpm. I chose to keep it under 200 since everything I read said you will get a better crush at that speed. So right now it can do over 6lbs a minuet at that speed and set at 0.037 I get 75% efficiency. As for tensioning, as you can see I took the easy way out and just let the motors weight do the work. I like this because it will allow the belt to slip easier if something got jammed in the rollers and I can also fold it in when transporting it and remove the belt very easily. It also saved me a lot of time because I already had the base made and didn't have to build a new one, I just screwed the hinges on and I was done.

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Old 09-09-2008, 01:18 PM   #5
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Great idea.

I pulled the back cover off the motor last night and switched the wires around so it would turn in the opposite direction; stopped by Grainger this morning before work and will pick up a 1.5" and 12" pulley, 3/8 to 1/2 adaptor bushing and a 50" 3L belt this afternoon.

I looked at the numbers on that website that I posted and decided against the bigger 14" pulley. Actually a 10" would have been ok, but I like having the additional torque with the 12" and the lower speed.

Any ideas on an easy belt guard so fingers don't get caught up in the works? I imagine you'd be looking at an amputation or near that if they did get caught.

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Old 09-09-2008, 01:52 PM   #6
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With a 12" you will have more power than you will ever need. I am no engineer, but my father is and when I asked him if it is a direct exponential equation of speed reduced to power gained he said it is pretty close. So with a 9x reduction of speed and a 1/3hp motor I am basically looking a mill with just over 3hp.

I agree that the 14" would have been to big, but the 12" should put you right at 156-157rpm and 3 3/4hp. That sounds pretty great to me.

I still haven't come up with any kind of guard, I plan to some time but for now I am the only one operating the mill and there is no kids or animals around. But I am still careful to only run the mill with the drive side away from me, because it would almost certainly be an amputation or at best broken bones.

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Old 09-09-2008, 02:31 PM   #7
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A couple of pieces of thin plywood or plastic (sides) screwed to a 3/4" board (top, end) makes a nice guard. Too much bother right up until the trip to the emergency room, when it looks like very little bother at all, comparatively.

I'd strongly suggest bothering.

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Old 09-09-2008, 02:44 PM   #8
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I have to put motorizing a mill into the nice-project-but-totally-unnecessary catagory. I use my Dewalt XRP cordless on mine and seriously, unless you brew once a week or more, it's not that much of a hassle to chuck a drill on. I even made my mounting base accomodate clamping the drill on so it's hands free. For the money you'll spend on sheaves, you might as well upgrade to a nice cordless drill that you'll use all over the house.

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Old 09-09-2008, 03:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
I have to put motorizing a mill into the nice-project-but-totally-unnecessary catagory. I use my Dewalt XRP cordless on mine and seriously, unless you brew once a week or more, it's not that much of a hassle to chuck a drill on.
I enjoy my brewday a lot more now that I have a motorized mill. I was using a corded 1/2" Milwaukee hammer-drill and it had a hard time keeping up unless you were just pouring it in at the same speed as it was grinding. That sucked because it almost always required a second person. So it is faster and it grinds at a lower consistent speed and I can do it myself. This may not be as big of a deal for some people, but I usually brew 3-4 times a month and do ten gallon batches. So although it is not necessary, it was one of the best additions to my brewhouse.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
For the money you'll spend on sheaves, you might as well upgrade to a nice cordless drill that you'll use all over the house.
This I completely disagree with. I spent $15 total on my sheaves and V-belt, you cannot get a decent drill for that price. Even if you do get a very nice drill, milling with it is a lot of work for it and will substantially shorten it's life. Motors are made to do exactly that and with running for a half hour or so every month it will outlast any drill and will probably outlive me. I have less that $150 total into my mill setup, most of which was the rollers and I highly doubt it will ever give me a hiccup.
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Old 09-09-2008, 03:27 PM   #10
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Where did you get your sheaves for $15? Mine are running me near $30, with the belt and adaptor it will be about $45.

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