In May I reviewed the GSI Javagrind and was quite enthusiastic about it. Unfortunately it only took one more use of it to change my mind.
The other night I took the Javagrind and (reluctantly) GSI's french press over to Leah's parent's tent at Victor Bay, determined to have a good cup of coffee while over there. When it came time to brew the coffee I took the Javagrind and began grinding my Yergacheffe coffee beans. After about four turns of the crank, the Javagrind stopped working.
The central part of the burr mill is what turns, grinding the beans against the outer, fixed part of the mill. This turning piece is attached to the crank by means of a bolt, the hexagonal head of which sits in a recess of the mill, allowing it to turn. In only its second use the head of the bolt stripped out of its recessed fitting, causing the shaft to spin helplessly inside the mill.
Again this was only my Javagrind's second use, and it certainly hasn't seen any rough handling. I was able to finish grinding the beans by shimming the bolt in the recess with a thin strip of cardboard, but it appears that the material used for the mill can not stand up to the minimal torques of the grinding process.
Disappointing, as I was quite pleased to find a hand cranked coffee mill for out on the land. The press perfomed marginally better this outing, but still had a sloppy seal on the plunger and is not worth purchasing.