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  1. #1
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    Best Hand-Cranked Burr Grinder

    Alright, I'm new here, but I could use your expertise for this question, so...
    What I'm looking for is a really good hand-cranked, adjustable grind, portable, and affordable grinder.

    I already roast my own beans in a frying pan, and brew them with either a stainless french press or stainless stovetop espresso maker. I'm looking to round out the setup with a good grinder. I preffer to use all stainless equipment, so I don't get contaminates, and so it is durable.

    Any advice here would be appreciated, thank you!

  2. #2
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    Now this may sound noobish then, but how do you stovetop roast the beans? Do we have a howto around the net somewhere?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by tobiasknight
    Now this may sound noobish then, but how do you stovetop roast the beans? Do we have a howto around the net somewhere?
    There was a thread a little ways down in this forum about it, with instructions, but the way I do it (basically) is:
    Heat a cast-iron frying pan to just under high heat (electric stove), then put in about a cup or so of green beans, and stir them constantly. Just put on some good tunes and have a glass of water at hand, and stir-stir-stir. They key is to not let them stop moving, if possible. Eventually there will be the initial cracking, then a second. You just roast them till they get to the color you are looking for, take them outside and dump them out on a towel, to let them cool, blow off the husks. And you're done!
    Also, make sure to have LOTS of ventilation, because they smoke a ton, especially if you are doing a darker roast.

  4. #4
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    It seems too simple, that's awesome =)

  5. #5
    DML
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    Re: Best Hand-Cranked Burr Grinder

    [quote="Analog"]Alright, I'm new here, but I could use your expertise for this question, so...
    What I'm looking for is a really good hand-cranked, adjustable grind, portable, and affordable grinder.

    quote]

    I use a Zassenhaus 169DG. It does a fair job, but it's main feature is that it is quiet and I get some exercize. As far as I can tell, Zassenhaus is not making or shipping grinders and no one seems to know if they ever will. Peugeot makes some hand operated mills. I have never even seen a new one and I don't know how well they work. I read a comment about the Peugot mills, "As with most things made in France, they are over-priced and don't work very well."

    There is a nice looking mill with the La Pavoni brand. They are made in Taiwan and are fairly inexpensive.

    As far as I can tell, they all used carbon steel or cast iron burrs. No stainless steel.

    Watch out for the Chinese copies of various old time brands. They are junk.

  6. #6
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    I was about to post an almost identical thread when I saw this one, so I'll just post it here. Hopefully it will add to the discussion.

    I'm also looking for a hand-cranking burr grinder. It seems like there is consensus that Zass is the best, but since they are hard to come by, I think I'd have to use ebay to get one. I haven't used ebay before, and I'm worried about getting stuck with a bunch of worn-out burrs. On the other hand, I don't want to get a new grinder with poor workmanship and end up with a grind I'm not happy with. So should I stick to Zass, or try something else? I was considering getting a Lodos grinder. Has anyone used these, or is there a better alternative? That La Pavoni looks nice and is pretty cheap.

    I'd like to stick to manual grinding because of the noise. I had to switch back to pre-ground recently because my housemates probably would have killed me if I made just one more morning cup of coffee with my blade grinder.

    BTW: I am new at this, and will be getting a FP and possibly an AeroPress as well. Any suggestions on what to do with my old auto-drip? I was thinking of using it to study projectile motion.

  7. #7
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    I've seen the occasional Zassenhaus grinder in coffee shops on the shelf with souvenir mugs, etc. I took a chance on Ebay, searching for "fassenhaus" (the script Z looks like an F) and "trosser." These tend to go a bit cheaper, so it stings less if you get a trashed one. I wound up with an Armin Trosser listed as fully functional, and it was exactly that. I've read that the AT are comparable to Zass grinders, and lacking experience with both I'm very happy with the AT.

    I'd be interested to learn how worn out the burrs could actually get or what effect that would have--I wondered that myself. In any case, I'll bet a bad/cheap/worn burr grinder is still better than a good whirly-blade grinder.

  8. #8
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    I am fairly mobile and cant always find a good cup of coffee in my travels. I hate to pre grind before I leave home and dont wish to need electricity. In my search for an affordable hand grinder, I found a unit on ebay that wasnt far away and seemed affordable for a test period.
    It works, but it is too big. This one has a large ceramic bowl on top of a wooden box. 99% of the hand grinders I see are of this design.

    Does anyone make a sleek (read: easy to carry/travel) hand mill that also stowes a serving or two. ?

    Best Hand-Cranked Burr Grinder-zassenhaus-coffee-mill_turkish.jpgBest Hand-Cranked Burr Grinder-zassenhaus-coffee-mill.jpg

    These are the only two I have found so far and are priced $160/ $100 respectively.

    Those that enjoy coffee and camping, what are you doing?

    My next question would be: "Best way to make hot water from your automobile?" Even without electricity, I will still need to make water hot for brewing on the go.

    ...hand mill, french press, and no hot water does not a good cup make.
    Everyday, make steps to be the greatness you see in yourself.

  9. #9
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    Can't go wrong with a good used Zassenhaus. Make sure made in Germany and not some knockoff.

    Len
    "I believe humans get a lot done, not because we're smart, but because we have thumbs so we can make coffee." ~Flash Rosenberg

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJevens View Post
    I am fairly mobile and cant always find a good cup of coffee in my travels. I hate to pre grind before I leave home and dont wish to need electricity. In my search for an affordable hand grinder, I found a unit on ebay that wasnt far away and seemed affordable for a test period.
    It works, but it is too big. This one has a large ceramic bowl on top of a wooden box. 99% of the hand grinders I see are of this design.

    Does anyone make a sleek (read: easy to carry/travel) hand mill that also stowes a serving or two. ?

    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	96Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Zassenhaus coffee mill.jpg 
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    These are the only two I have found so far and are priced $160/ $100 respectively.

    Those that enjoy coffee and camping, what are you doing?

    My next question would be: "Best way to make hot water from your automobile?" Even without electricity, I will still need to make water hot for brewing on the go.

    ...hand mill, french press, and no hot water does not a good cup make.

    just an FYI. those hand grinders are used for turkish coffee only. if you want your coffee as fine as a certain powder thats illegal, then you would want to stay away from that. turkish coffee is awesome though. i will make some espresso from that and ride to the moon. lol

 

 
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