Friday, 7 October 2016

Another project: An old fruit mill and press

So a couple of weeks ago, i decided I would really like to have a press, so I could have more control over my cider making, at least for small batches. I saved a search on eBay small ads, so anything popping up with 50km of us would show up. But then, last Saturday, I got a message from a friend asking if I would like a press, as they had one in a barn they're going to sell. It was fate!

The next morning, we went over for a look, to find there wasn't just a fine old press, but a couple of old fruit mills too. Now, I had already been looking for a staiunless steel electric model, perhaps even buying one together with a neighbour to share the expense, so i wasn't too interested in the dirty old mill. However, that very day, we were off to a festival, to man a stand pressing apples for juice to sell. And what kind of mill did they have? The c´very same kind. Well, it was a booth for the local museum, after all. So, that was decided, It worked brilliantly, looked the biz, and if it's been used for decades, it must be good. I'd take it.

Fast forward to yesterday (Thursday) evening, and we borrowed a friend and his trailer, and off we went to Allfeld to pick up the press and a mill, with a large barrel thrown in fora few homebrews.

The press and mill were layered in mud, as back in May, there were serious floods in our region, and Allfeld was one of the worst hit villages. Large parts of street were washed away, and the barn where the mill was, was right on the banks of the Schefflenz, so was filled to about 1.7 metres of water, with all the mud it carried. We escaped lightly here in Schefflenz. So, it was hard to see the true condition of the mill and press. Today was time to get out the high pressure washer,and blast the dirt off. Have a look at the video to see the mill in action, and in various stages of dismantling.

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