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The Good: You can grind almost anything including nut butters, it includes the table clamp and the price is competitive for what it does.
The Bad: The Wonder Junior Deluxe accessories seem overpriced for what they are and the seller network adds friction to the buying process.
My Summary: In my opinion, this grain mill is the best value on the market right now.
Detailed Review: Wonder Junior Deluxe Grain Mill
What is a Wonder Junior Deluxe?
The Wonder Junior Deluxe is a grain mill made by the Wondermill company. It is designed to grind grains, beans and nuts into flours, cracked grains and butters.This is done the old-fashioned way by manually cranking the handle which turns an auger that feeds the stone or steel burrs. Depending on how tightly you have the burrs snugged together a fine flour will come out for you to enjoy.
Who is the Wonder Junior Deluxe For?
The Wonder Junior Deluxe is perfect for people who want full control over the fineness of the foods they make. It’s also great for people who want to save money on gluten-free flours by grinding their own. The Wonder Junior Deluxe is also perfect for people who are preparing for disasters that will have a longer lifespan and impact access to reliable electricity.
Why Did I Buy the Wonder Junior Deluxe?
I did a lot of research when figuring out which mill I wanted to purchase. There are some really expensive hand grain mills out there and I’m sure they’re wonderful, but my research indicates that the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe is the best value for me without question. It is the most versatile and you get the most for your money. Costing about $220 it does what many grain mills at double the price can do and more.
You can grind fine flours and you can grind nut butters. You get all of the things you need in one affordable box. With some grain mills, you only get the bare bone grinding mill and have to add on things like flour guides, steel burrs and table clamps. That’s not the case with the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe hand grain mill. Want to see me unbox this bad boy? Check this article out: Unboxing the Wonder Junior Deluxe!
Using the Wonder Junior Deluxe Hand Grain Mill
Setting up the mill is as simple as clamping it to a solid surface that won’t move as you rotate the arm of the Wonder Junior Deluxe mill. Using it is pretty simple generally speaking. It should be reasonable to expect any manual grain mill to be more physically demanding than a motorized mill. If you’ll be grinding a few loafs of bread worth of hard red winter wheat into bread flour, then you’d better expect to be breathing heavy by the end of the process. Manual grain grinding is not easy, but it is gratifying.
What Can You Grind with the Wonder Junior Deluxe?
The possibilities are almost limitless. With the stone burrs, you can grind most non-oily grains, seeds and beans. With the steel burrs you grain basically any oily seeds and nuts into nut butters. Between the types of things you can grind and the fineness, you can make:
- Bread, almond, garbanzo or rice flour
- Corn meal
- Peanut, almond, pine nut or pistachio butter
- Cracked grain hot cereal
Can I Grind X Ingredient?
While I’d love to give you a comprehensive list of things you can grind, I don’t know what all of the things on the planet are that you could. Additionally, many things may void the warranty if you grind them in your grain mill. So what is a person to do? Because the people at Wondermill are so awesome, they created a whole website dedicated to things they’ve ground in their Wondermill grain mills and they even tell you if it is under warranty for that particular thing or not. This is the website: Will It Grind? Enjoy.
Use the Correct Grinding Burrs!
The Wonder Junior Deluxe comes with two sets of burrs: stone and steel. They do different things well. The stone burrs will grind dry ingredients to a finer dust, the steel burrs can handle moist/oily material. You don’t want to put moist/oily things through the stone burrs, you’ll just clog and glaze them to the point where they won’t work. Good luck cleaning those! When in doubt, use the steel burrs. I would also suggest checking what you want to grind with the Will It Grind website above to see which burrs to use and whether the Wonder Junior Deluxe is warrantied to grind that ingredient.
What Accessories Are Available for the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Hand Grain Mill
There are primarily three accessories available besides the replacement parts like a flour guide, table clamp and so forth.
Drill Bit Attachment
The drill bit attachment allows you to replace the handle of the Wonder Junior Deluxe grain mill with a variable speed drill. While this is convenient, I would have a few reservations about this:
- The drills are generally pretty expensive if you don’t already have one that meets the parameters. The suggested drill, which can be found here, is about $180 at the time of this writing.
- The cost of the drill bit attachment is notable at $30.
- There have been reports of the high speeds causing the stone grinders to glaze over which makes them useless.
- High speed processing in the mill will void the warranty.
The Motorizing Pulley
The motorizing pulley has a bit more use in my eyes, but there is missed opportunity here that I wish they considered. The pulley gives you many options for processing flour at a higher rate. I do have some complaints here though:
- It is still pricey, but a better value in my eyes than the drill bit at a cost of $60.
- You have more control over the speeds with a motor, but may still void the warranty or glaze the stone grinders.
- They didn’t make the pulley in such a way that you can attach a handle for added leverage. This was a huge opportunity miss for me.
The bicycle sprocket attachment is almost kind of a mix of the pros and cons of both the drill bit attachment and the motorizing pulley. I think it’s the best value for what you get at $30, but you still have all of the problems of processing at too high of a speed. What I like about the sprocket is that the chain attachment system gives you lots of options such as using bicycle parts, but you can also use a motor by attaching a sprocket to the motor.
Final Thoughts on the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Attachments
If you’ll be using any of these attachments, just be sure to keep the RPMs below the number recommended by Wondermill (as of this writing, the manual states 150 RPMs). You don’t want to void a lifetime warranty and you don’t want to glaze your stone grinding wheels!
Cleaning the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Mill
Cleaning the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe grain mill is pretty simple. I disassemble the whole thing, and clean it in the sink using a mild dish detergent and warm water. The Wonder Junior Deluxe mill is not dishwasher safe. They provide a cleaning brush that you can use to do a simple dust off of flour if you prefer a quick clean up.
Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Replacement Manual
Did you lose your manual? Don’t worry. The manual is retrievable from Wondermill’s website here.
Where is the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Grain Mill Made?
It is a bit difficult to find online, but once the box came in, it became apparent that the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Hand Grain Mill is made in India. I don’t have a lot of experience, that I’m aware of, with products made in India, but I can say I’m impressed with the build quality. If you want a grain mill that is made in the USA, this is not the one for you.
My Personal Complaints
Let me be clear, I love the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe. I wanted the most function for the least price and I think this one was the perfect mill for my needs. But all purchases have trade-offs. My main complaints are:
The Auger Housing Flares Out
I don’t like how the auger housing flares out into a cone shape. Towards the end of a grind, the auger can’t push the last bits of grain into the burrs very well, so you end up with some stuff left over in the auger housing. I feel that if it were a straight tube shape, then you’d have better chances of the auger being able to move the last bits of grain into the burrs. I’m not a mechanical engineer, so I can’t say this with absolute certainty, but it makes sense to me.
Locking You In With Proprietary Chucks
I dislike how the chuck that the handle attaches to is intentionally engineered to a more proprietary, triangular shape. I think this is done intentionally so they can sell a $30 drill bit attachment, but by doing this, they severely limit what people can do. This seems like a short-sighted and greedy decision.
The Seller Network
They sell through a network of partners rather than directly to the public. This can make it confusing on where to purchase and who to buy from. If you buy from an unauthorized dealer, you don’t get the warranty and some dealers offer specials such as including the drill bit attachment for free, etc. This can make the purchase and support process a bit more complicated than it needs to be. To be fair, they do have a spot on their website for authorized dealers, but it just adds to the research you need to do in order to purchase their grain mill.
Other than those 3 complaints, I think the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe is an extraordinary value.
Other Peoples’ Complaints About the Wonder Junior Deluxe
As you’re researching, you’ll undoubtedly come across negative reviews and complaints. I won’t refute other peoples’ experiences, but I can address their concerns with my experiences.
It’s too hard to grind with the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe
This is another complaint that doesn’t often have enough detail. Grinding grain manually is inherently tough. Are there things that can make it easier from one mill to another such as longer handles? Sure, but even on the most efficient manual grain mill, you’ll probably still end up tired after grinding. I think the majority of these complaints come from people who romanticized the idea of grinding their own grain just to realize it’s actually physically demanding.
It’s terrible at grinding
One of the complaints I read was this: “Bought it to grind moringa powder and it was absolutely terrible at that”
How do you even address that kind of complaint? What was wrong with the grind? Was it not fine enough or too fine? Did they use the stone or steel burrs? Does this reviewer have enough strength to grind it at the fineness that they wanted? We don’t know because none of those details were provided. Make sure that the complaints and reviews that are swaying your opinion provide details you can actually use to help arrive at a buying decision. I’m not saying this machine is infallible or perfect, and I’m certainly not saying that a bad unit doesn’t make it out of the factory, but with the above kind of review, you can’t determine if it was the person, or the machine at fault.
It doesn’t grind flour finely enough
I’m not sure if it’s a question of strength, or I’m just not as picky, but I’ve not had this experience. I hope that grain mill that costs twice the price grinds fine flour faster, but I’m not so quick to believe that the Wonder Junior Deluxe can’t produce the same fineness of flour. Consider the physics of this. You’re putting pieces of grain between two stones and breaking them into really tiny pieces.
To make flour finer, you put the stone burrs together more closely using the tension screw. As an example, the Country Living Grain Mill doesn’t have magic voodoo at work. I think some people believe there is a difference in the fineness of the flour simply because the price of a grain mill is higher than the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe. Who wants to believe that they spent hundreds more for a tool that creates the same level quality of flour?
Can the Country Living Mill produce the flour faster? Probably, and again I would hope so, but according to the Wondermill folks, the Wonder Junior Deluxe wins that battle too. I won’t comment simply because I have not yet compared the two. Here’s Wondermill’s video about that subject. You can be the judge. Some people in the comments say the Wondermill’s flour isn’t as fine.
The Country Living Grain Mill, Grainmaker or Other grain mill is Better
I don’t often see a lot of substantiation behind these claims. Most often, people are really saying “This other grain mill is better for me.” It’s hard for people to separate themselves from their opinion. What makes a grain mill better? Only you can determine that. For me, I wanted the most function with the least cost. If you said that you only were ever going to crack corn, and only do it a few times a year I wouldn’t suggest any of these mills to you. I would suggest some cheap workhorse like the tried, true and cheap Corona grain mill or this slightly more expensive Victorio grain mill.
The Wondermill has Aluminum in it!
So does nearly every other grain mill on the face of this earth. I could rip into this complaint a bit more, but here’s a response directly from Wondermill on this subject:
The auger drive that guides the grain into the stainless steel grinding burrs is made out of a composite alloy that does have some aluminum in it. The reason we chose this composite alloy is for its strength,durability and the fact that it can be cast into a light yet super strong corrosion resistant drive with no risk of food contamination . The grinding process of the mill takes place in the stainless steel burr grinding plates not in the auger drive. Because of this there is no transfer of any alloy or aluminum from the auger drive to the food.
The auger drive is magnetic attractive which shows there is very little aluminum in the alloy. Also since any aluminum transfer requires a heat or chemical reaction, even this slight amount would never be transferred into the flour since the grinding action comes after the grain passes through the auger drive area and into the stainless steel grinding chamber.Because of this there is no measurable transfer of any alloy or aluminum from the auger drive to the food. The chance of getting aluminum into your body from using this mill would be less than simply touching a soda can or a public stair case railing or opening the door of your car.
It’s not made in America
This is a legitimate complaint. It is made in India. If you only buy made in the USA, then this mill is not for you.
Closing Thoughts On My Review of the Wondermill Wonder Junior Deluxe Manual Hand Grain Mill
I think this mill is an incredible value for what it does. I’m very happy with the purchase and would gladly do it again. I do have my complaints about it, but no product is perfect. For the price you pay, you get an insane amount of function.