Comparison of tungsten carbide and stainless steel ball bearings for grinding single maize kernels in a reciprocating grinder

Date
2011-01-01
Authors
Hoch, Jay
Moran Lauter, Adrienne
Scott, Marvin
Scott, M. Paul
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Agronomy
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AgronomyGenetics
Abstract

When grinding many corn kernels at once, there are several different options to choose from, but single kernel grinding is limited to few options with relatively low throughput. An attractive alternative is a reciprocating grinder with 3/8” grinding balls and a 4ml polycarbonate vial set. This format allows grinding of 24 samples simultaneously, which is a significant improvement to grinding throughput. A reciprocating grinder like the Talboys HT Homogenizer (Troemner, Thorofare, NJ), operates by violently shaking the 4ml polycarbonate vials containing a bearing and a single kernel. In our experience, stainless steel ball bearings do not lead to a satisfactory grind in this system. We reasoned that higher-density bearings should perform better. Tungsten carbide ball bearings are twice as dense as stainless steel and are available in the correct size. The objective of this experiment was to compare the grinding quality between steel and tungsten carbide bearings.

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This article is published as Hoch J., Moran Lauter A., Scott M.P. (2012) Comparison of Tungsten Carbide and Stainless Steel Ball Bearings for Grinding Single Maize Kernels in a Reciprocating Grinder, Maize Genetics Cooperation Newsletter.

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