Barley Crusher Owners - What's a good gap setting?

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GRHunter

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I really wanted to get a Monster Mill grain mill but I couldn't order one online. All the LHBS's in my part of the state only carry the Barley Crusher so that's what I wound up buying. It looks like a nice mill, and plenty of people seem to be happy with it so I expect it will serve me well. It comes from the factory supposedly preset at a .039 gap. Should I just leave it there, or is there a better setting I should try?
 

samc

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Buy feeler gauges if you don't have them and check the gap, some have reported it not being set correct from the get go. I'd do your first batch @ .039 and see how you like it, or adjust as needed after a pound of grain. I have mine set @ .034 and use wet conditioned grain. I could probably go tighter but don't see any real reason to do so.
 

Fatgodzilla

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Buy feeler gauges if you don't have them and check the gap, some have reported it not being set correct from the get go. I'd do your first batch @ .039 and see how you like it, or adjust as needed after a pound of grain. I have mine set @ .034 and use wet conditioned grain. I could probably go tighter but don't see any real reason to do so.
Just remember also that the different grains you will be crushing come in different sizes and have varying degrees of hard huskness. If you often use differnt grains, there will be no single suitable size (therefore the default is okay). If you primarily crush only one grain, then Samc's advice is applicable but remember he wets conditions his grain before usage.

I have left my BC at the default as I may use any of six base malts and am satisfied.

There is no right answer to the "best" gap, just experience will tell you the gap your brewing styles require.
 

eddie

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I have mine on the default setting and it works great for me. I played around with the settings a few times but went back to the original gap as it seems to work best all around.

Just to let you know, there is a rubber o-ring on one of the rollers that is going to break off the first or second time you use it. It's supposed to do that. It's just there for manufacturing and testing purposes and has nothing to do with the operation of the mill. If it finds it's way into the mash, it won't hurt anything either so don't freak when it happens.
 
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GRHunter

GRHunter

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I have mine on the default setting and it works great for me. I played around with the settings a few times but went back to the original gap as it seems to work best all around.

Just to let you know, there is a rubber o-ring on one of the rollers that is going to break off the first or second time you use it. It's supposed to do that. It's just there for manufacturing and testing purposes and has nothing to do with the operation of the mill. If it finds it's way into the mash, it won't hurt anything either so don't freak when it happens.
I noticed that o-ring when I was looking at the rollers. I kind of figured it would have a short life span. I couldn't figure out what it was there for. Glad to hear that it's not for anything important, thanks.
 

bmckee56

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I have not adjusted my mill from the factory setting and I notice the grind is a bit more fine than the LHBS I used to get my grain milled from. I have had no problems with stuck run off, so I have left it alone. My efficiency runs anywhere from 75% - 85% depending on the grain bill. I am happy at this time with that.

Salute! :mug:
 

Jud

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Could not even tell you. Left mine alone and am getting 75 to 78 every batch. So I haven't even looked at it.
 

Airborneguy

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Definitely check the gap because besides what I am about to tell you, a lot of people on this board have said theirs was off when they received it. Mine was .42 a week ago when I checked it.

That said, I left it at .42 for my first batch with it and jumped 10% in efficiency. If after 3 batches it averages round there, I'm leaving it.
 

Malticulous

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I've never measured or adjusted mine. I tend to get efficiency in the mid eighties for average size beers. Don't fix whats not broken.
 

Tanagra

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I recently purchased the 'Barely Crusher with 15lb hopper' from Northern Brewer and used it on my fourth batch last Saturday. I was getting 80% efficiency with my local homebrew store crush, but I felt more comfortable being able to control the process myself - just another variable to conquer.

I set my gap to .030 and conditioned 4.5lbs of Marris Otter with an ounce or two of water and a spray bottle. The crush was fantastic! I mashed that with 4.5lbs of flaked wheat (I am making a modified Blue-Moon clone) and I was a little nervous about having a stuck sparge - I fly-sparge with a rotating sparge-arm.

I am happy to say that everything went perfectly. Although my efficiency held at 80%, I am not going to adjust it any further - and I am happy in knowing that with I can look forward to yet another slight increase in probability of brewing consistant batches.
 

bdnoona

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I think factory settings are supposed to be .039, however mine were not. I have heard .035 thrown around a lot by folks on this board as about as close as you'd want to go unless you're milling conditioned malt.
 

jaba

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I use .035 and get 80%-85% eff. regularly. Mine came a little crooked, .039 at one end, .036 at the other.
 

JuanMoore

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I use 0.032 and average just over 80% efficiency. The only time I've had a sparge even threaten to get stuck was 40% rye malt without any rice hulls.
 
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