My Ugly Junk- Corona Mill Station...

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Dynachrome

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I think my grain hopper was a vinegar bottle cleaned really well - clear packaging tape to adhere it to the factory aluminum hopper - bottom and top cut off as need to make a larger hopper.

I use a rubber band to hold a plastic bag, with the bottom cut out, which functions to funnel the crush into a five gallon plastic bucket/receptacle.
 

BeardedIdiot

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I use a 4 gallon plastic water bottle that the local grocery store sells for the cold water dispensers. I like the 4 gallon size over the 5 gallon size because it doesn't have that built in handle in the side. I'd guess it can hold 15-20 lbs of grain easy.
 

kad2371

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I use a 4 gallon plastic water bottle that the local grocery store sells for the cold water dispensers. I like the 4 gallon size over the 5 gallon size because it doesn't have that built in handle in the side. I'd guess it can hold 15-20 lbs of grain easy.
I might go with the water bottle concept, but I'm a cheap bastard, so if I can I'd rather find something already laying around to repurpose instead. I have collected plenty of junk, surely I can find a way to put some of it to good use.

Speaking of which, I have multiple ancient computers around here, some dating back to the 90's. I was finally planning to haul all of that junk off to an electronics recycling place, then I got into making beer and found some of the DIY threads. My wife just kind of shook her head and rolled her eyes when I said "But honey, I can't get rid of it now, I might need some of the fans and power supplies for future improvements to my brew day.":ban:

:off:I had a teacher in High School that we referred to as the Bearded Idiot, 20some years ago. :beard:
 

FuzzeWuzze

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I stole wilsnerbrews setup i liked it so much, two homer buckets inside of eachother. The top one is offset by extra screws i had laying around..they arent perfectly at the same level so it tips very slightly to one side but i had no trouble milling 10# of grain other than my cheap Ryobi drill overheating multiple times we had to take breaks, it started to get that magic electrical burning smell...

Bought one of the adjustable harbor freight drills and looking forward to trying it for this weekend.





How does the crush look? it looked good to me so i went with it and got i believe 75% my first brew. Everyone said credit card width so i stuck one in and turned it closed until i could get the card out but i ended up with a ton of flour so i backed it off until it looked like this. Overall i think its good, everything looks cracked but maybe one or two grains i can see in the picture and they arent shredded to bits with tons of flour. You can see my hands are covered in flour from the previous tight batch.
 

rico567

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Looks good! (aka UGLY). I use the bucket-in-bucket setup myself, and it can't be beat. My old Craftsman 1/2" drill goes through a grain bill in about 5 minutes, and when I mash, I hit my numbers every time. Total investment = less than $25.
 

yewtah-brewha

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Crush looks good, it looks like mine does. sometimes I get a little powder in the crush, but I dont think it hurts it,

as for your ugly junk it, you hit the mark! lol mine is similar but I use 3 buckets, the very bottom bucket has about 5 inches of gravel to keep the bucket from falling over when I load the hopper, the middle and top are just like yours, I used it this past weekend and couldnt be happier with the set up. I did a 21.5 lb crush and my drill took a**** on me after 7 lbs so I finished the crush with the handle.

first time I crushed and contained all of the grain. bucket in bucket is the bomb!
 

wilserbrewer

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ImageUploadedByHome Brew1405180923.599373.jpg

Finally got tired of holding the drill while milling. The 1/2" drill is bungee corded to the top of a smaller bucket.

Eventually I think I will source a headed bolt, and drive the mill with a deep socket, a cut socket extension, and a. 3/8" socket swivel so the mill just slides onto the power pack. It's nice to multi task while the corona grinds the grain and this works well!


Wilserbrewer
Http://biabbags.webs.com/
 

HomebrewCraig

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After viewing so many works of art, I felt compelled to post some of my own ugly junk. Like many here, I own a Corona mill. Mine was even less feature rich, as it did not come with the ball bearing or nylon spacers, which prompted a few runs to the local Ace Hardware for the appropriate pieces.

Photo 1 shows a Homer bucket, skillfully pierced with a 2x2

Photo 2 is another view, more of the inside

Photo 3 is a close-up, which you can hopefully see the three washers I used between the two plates, as well as the 1.5" 8/32 bolt with nut to better secure the grind plate. All wobble was removed!

Photo 4 is my high-tech, hyper-accurate liquid measuring device.

What do you think? Ugly enough?

UglyJunk1.jpg


UglyJunk2.jpg


UglyJunk3.JPG


uglyjunk4.jpg
 

troy2000

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A photo repost of my bucket-in-bucket setup, with the mill bucket's bottom cut out so I can just lift it free and leave the crushed grain behind. I've learned to do that outside somewhere though, because of the ring of flour I leave wherever I set the mill bucket down.

Last weekend I brewed a Maris Otter/Fuggles SMaSH. I poured all 10 lbs into the 3-gallon water-jug hopper and had room to spare; it would probably have held 12 lbs. I used a 1/2" variable-speed drill for power, and cranked it at a fairly slow and steady pace. My cell phone's time stamp showed 6:44 when I started and 6:47 when I finished, which means it took somewhere between three and four minutes for me to crush 10 lbs of grain without hurrying. Can't argue with that....

I've also found that a couple of minutes conditioning the grain with a squirt bottle of water while I stir it by hand works wonders. The grain still cracks nicely, it reduces the flour, and almost all the hulls come out in one piece. Don't need no stinkin' rice hulls, even when I use about 20% wheat.

I started out looking at my Chinese clone of a Corona as a cheap stop-gap measure - just something to get me by, until I could afford a 'real' mill. But I don't think I could get more real than the way it's been doing its job.

Of course I keep forgetting to add some duct tape, so my setup still doesn't qualify as 'ugly junk.' :D

grain mill 004.jpg
 

ErinGoBuff

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I've started running low on scrap materials (necessary to keep this a "junk" build) but I plan to finish this up soon. I found that the threads of the windshield wiper motor fit my mill perfectly without any needed modification.

I'm using an old laptop power supply to provide the 24 volts. I'll be adding a switch from an old coffee maker.....just to make it fancy.
ImageUploadedByHome Brew1409455999.983721.jpgImageUploadedByHome Brew1409456014.229718.jpg


If it ain't broke, fix it 'till it is.
- US Navy Maintenance Mantra
 

ErinGoBuff

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I've been distracted potty training a toddler this week, but I'll get this finished up a post a video on YouTube. I'll need it for a brew day this weekend!


If it ain't broke, fix it 'till it is.
- US Navy Maintenance Mantra
 

IanJ

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What's the latest mill being purchased for a good price these days? Every one I check out is either really overpriced or reviewed between 1 and 3 stars claiming cheap Chinese metal, broken parts, arriving DOA, paint coming off into the grain, etc.

FYI - I live in an apartment and will have to get something smaller, so this seemed like a more practical direction but not if it's going to be overpriced or broken!
 

fuzzy2133

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What's the latest mill being purchased for a good price these days? Every one I check out is either really overpriced or reviewed between 1 and 3 stars claiming cheap Chinese metal, broken parts, arriving DOA, paint coming off into the grain, etc.

FYI - I live in an apartment and will have to get something smaller, so this seemed like a more practical direction but not if it's going to be overpriced or broken!
Dang all the good priced ones have like $20 in shipping :confused:. I found a few on flea bay for $35 with free shipping. Probably worth waiting and grabbing one when it hits a price you like.

They get bad reviews cuz the plates not being aligned. I wouldn't think they have changed any.
So many people buy these mills thinking the machine will make flour and then rip it for being miss advertised.
 

poptarts

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Dang all the good priced ones have like $20 in shipping :confused:. I found a few on flea bay for $35 with free shipping. Probably worth waiting and grabbing one when it hits a price you like.



So many people buy these mills thinking the machine will make flour and then rip it for being miss advertised.
they are under 25$ shipped on amazon.
 

IanJ

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They get bad reviews cuz the plates not being aligned. I wouldn't think they have changed any.
So many people buy these mills thinking the machine will make flour and then rip it for being miss advertised.
I guess that makes sense, but it's always hard to tell with Amazon reviews. Ordering the one below via Prime for $25, suppose it'll be fine. I guess it's not a huge cost if not.

Thanks :)
 

FuzzeWuzze

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So i slightly upgraded my two bucket system, i got tired of having to hold the stupid drill while i milled. So i bought a $6 bit of 2x2 plywood, cut a big hole in it with a jigsaw, and threw some legs on it with some 2x4's i had left from my Coffin keezer and ended up with this. Now all i gotta do is plug the drill in and let it do its thing, when im all done i can just lift up the tiny table to get to the 2nd bucket underneath with all the grain. I thought about making the legs taller so i could slide the bucket in and out and may change to that but i was also worried about grain flying out of the gap, and my 2x4's werent long enough :)

Before


After

 

wilserbrewer

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FuzzeWuzze said:
i got tired of having to hold the stupid drill while i milled. ]

Yes, me too!
After propping the drill precariously, I broke the drive bolt threaded to the mill....again :(

Rather than try and drill the bolt out as I previously struggled and cussed my way through, I coupled the shaft with heavy tubing and hose clamps, with a socket attached to the mill, and a bolt in the drill.

Works great! Hands free milling and the mill slides off the drill / power pack without having to fool with the drill chuck evertime I mill... Very pleased!ImageUploadedByHome Brew1410438909.448947.jpgImageUploadedByHome Brew1410438966.455895.jpg


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mb82

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Has anyone noticed a drop in efficiency when going to a motorized mill with these Corona mills? My last two batches have had a 5% drop in efficiency. The crush looks ok, it is kinda strange.
 

wilserbrewer

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Has anyone noticed a drop in efficiency when going to a motorized mill with these Corona mills? My last two batches have had a 5% drop in efficiency. The crush looks ok, it is kinda strange.
Inspect your crush thoroughly, sometimes the cheap wing nuts will loosen and change the crush. I replaced the chintzy wing nuts with better quality from Ace hardware. Also you need to tighten the wing nuts well to maintain the adjustment on the mill. Good and tight with pliers...hand tight not so good IME.

Never hand cranked mine FWIW, but you should be able to adjust the crush to get your desired results.

Inspect the crushed grain, be certain there are no unbroken kernels of grain!
 

Mojzis

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I use a large corded drill and go as fast as it will go with no ill effects. I average 80%eff.
 

mb82

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Thanks I will go through my mill with a fine tooth comb. The first batch with the drill had 20% wheat so I blamed it on the wheat. The second batch was all barley so it should have crushed well.
 

RichBenn

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Me too! Mine is wobbly, but after getting the spacing right, the grain just centers the shaft while grinding.

That said, i just got a cereal killer mill, so i can get more consistent crush for fly sparging with a false bottom. Holes are bigger than my screen.

No real difference in in efficiency (82%+) with the corona on batch vs. the new mill, though. Probably will sell the corona on craigslist.


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