Efficiency Issues - UPDATED

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The Gulper
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Today, trying to compensate for the grain aging (it wasn't very fresh even a year ago) I intentionally milled the malt extremely fine, almost to flour. I hoped it would give me the same if not better extraction. No way, the extraction turned out to be lower. From which I conclude that the age of the grain was a more important factor than the crush size.

I use a Corona mill. Buy one, you'll have the full control over your milling. Me, f.ex., I always crush base malts and Crystals in different sizes (I prefer my Crystals milled finer) and even different brands of the same type of malt often require different gap setting: for instance, Scandinavian Pilsner malts are much plumpier than French Pilsner malts so the mill must be set accordingly. No LHBS would account for such subtle nuances if I didn't have my own mill.
 

CascadesBrewer

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I set my mill for every customer one at a time exactly how I'd like to be treated if it were my grain order. We don't forget to set it to the desired crush EVER. Hell, we fill some orders where each grain batch has a different mill setting because they will brew one on a 3 vessel and another on a BIAB.
It would be nice if this was the norm. Every in-person shop I have been to has a mill at a fixed setting. One local shop has a sign saying to not run the grain through twice with some BS about it jamming up the mill. I guess that is a step up from when I first started shopping there 20-ish years ago when they just had a mill in the back and you had to call in if you wanted your base grain milled (they also sold 10# bags of pre-milled grain).

It was the inconsistencies between crush at local stores and online that pushed me to get my own mill. Now if I started over again with a $400 budget, I would advocate $100 of that toward a mill, especially since I moved to BIAB.
 
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