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03 September 2009

AskMecha: Coffee Grinders - The mister's Braun coffee grinder is on it's last legs. He doesn't want to bother with electric grinders anymore and has decided to get a hand cranked grinder. I've done a bit of Googling and, oddly enough, they still exist.
[More:]The question is - does anyone here use a hand crank grinder? If so, what brand, are you happy with it, where did you buy it, etc.

Have a look on Coffee Geek, deborah. There's a number of threads in the forum on hand grinders, as well as product reviews.

But, be warned : as is always the case where nerds are involved, some will argue to the death about their product of choice.
posted by essexjan 03 September | 15:25
I have a Turkish hand grinder, it looks very much like the one at the bottom of the link you posted. I sure didn't pay $80 for it though, it was a $2 garage sale find. Anyway, I use it every morning to grind beans for my French press.

Wait, that makes me sound like a coffee snob. I am not a coffee snob, I'll drink coffee from McDonalds and actually like it. I only use a French press because I'm cheap: our tap water is so hard that it kills drip coffeemakers in less than a year. After the 5th coffeemaker in 4 years died, I decided I'd be damned if I wasted money on another one and switched to the French press we use on camping trips. I have a Braun blade coffee grinder but discovered I couldn't control the grind size well enough so the first few attempts with the press were gritty and weak. Then I remembered the Turkish grinder that was stuffed into a drawer somewhere and with a minor amount of fiddling with the settings it was grinding beans into the perfect size for the press.

It's sort of a pain in the ass to fuss around with every morning as it takes about 15 revolutions to grind enough beans to make 2 cups of coffee and frankly, I'm plenty cranky pre-coffee without having to crank a little brass handle too. However, once I have a very excellent cup 'o joe in me, I forget all about how crabby I was 20 minutes before and then 24 hours later, I once again grumpily grind more beans while half asleep.

Occasionally, during fits of longing for just pushing a button and getting the job done, I lust after an electric burr grinder in the Overpriced Kitchen Store but it's something crazy like $300 and if I'm too cheap to buy another $25 Mr Coffee, I'm waaay too cheap to fork over $300 for a grinder.
posted by jamaro 03 September | 22:29
As it turns out, I'm more asleep than I thought pre-coffee: this morning I counted the number of revolutions required to grind enough beans for 2 cups of coffee. 63. No wonder it makes me crabby.
posted by jamaro 04 September | 12:30
I have one. I bought it for about 25 bucks in a general store in a little town on the coast. Nothing fancy. Enameled cast iron and wood. The crank is on a wheel on the side. It takes about 225 turns to empty the hopper, which makes a strong pot of 6 cups. I use it off & on, when I have the time. I also have an electric grinder, that I use more often. But I like the hand grinder just fine. When we lost power for five days a few years back, everybody thought I was a freakin' genious, 'cause I was drinking fresh ground coffee with water heated on a little fold-up sterno stove. It was quite the luxury.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson 04 September | 21:18
Thanks for all the help, folks. I've forwarded your insight/links to the mister. He thanks y'all as well.
posted by deborah 05 September | 18:32
I have this Capresso grinder and think it is the best ever. Please don't consider blade grinders.
posted by terrapin 07 September | 07:39
Cats are weird || Funny aural coincidence