While last year's equipment served us well and had a certain
old world charm, we felt that we needed to take it up a
notch. In particular, we thought the apple grinder needed to
grind finer and the press needed to be easier to load and
unload. Also the throughput of both operations needed to
increase. It would also be ideal if we didn't have to fix the
machines several times during each use.|
This led us to contemplate a frame and tray type press and a
human powered grinder.
For the grinder, Ben suggested a two cylinder with blades
bolted on approach. Here is a drawing I made in autocad while
farting around with the idea:
I need to learn Solid Works...
There were a few ideas on how to build this including stacking
up lasercut acrylic disks. I even bought a chunk of 6 inch
round HDPE, some pillow blocks, shafting, and a flywheel, but
thats as far as I got. Ben actually made something up
involving flat head screws on wooden drums, but he said it
loaded up too easily. Maybe next year.
In the name of expediency, Ben went with the garbage disposal
solution, which turns out to kick so much ass that it will be
difficult to go back to a less effective grinding method
(which a drum grinder would certainly be). The disposal
pulverizes the apples at top speed with very little effort:
Insinkerator mounted in a piece of countertop
Note compressed air for cooling
Apples are obliterated
For the press, I was thinking of something built like
furniture out of nice old wood:
Yeah... in my dreams!
However, it is lucky that Ben is more practical and doesn't
get hung up on silly ideas like that. We mulled a few options
for critical dimensions and parts and came out with a 1-1/2
diameter steel acme thread screw 3' long with two square brass
nuts, and a food service stainless pan to catch juice. These
were all bought from McMaster.
Here is Ben's design that he whipped up:
Simple and effective
He then actually built this, and it ended up looking nice and
it works very well.
Later on, Ben, JD, and I used the machine shop at E Ink to
mill a hex on the end of the screw to fit a 10 inch diameter
cast aluminum handwheel. That didn't quite work out, so for
this year we turned the screw with a hex socket with breaker
bar and a piece of aluminum pipe.
Fun in the ol' machine shop
Ready to rip into it with Wilbah