Fine grind problems.

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Fine grind problems.

Postby thehenno » Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:54 pm

Hi everyone.

First post here so please be gentle with me. I like my meat to be nice and fine but am having trouble with the unit I have.... I think.

We don't have much of a choice in retail shops here so 3 years ago I bought a Kenwood MG450 grinder stuffer. No matter how cold I got the meat pushing it through the fine plate is always hard work. I am leaning on the plunger with all my weight and getting out a slow trickle. 5 kg takes bloody ages!

Now Im seeing YouTube clips of people using fine sand paper on flat surfaces to sharpen both their blade and screen. Any ideas for a three year newbie.

Oh yeah my favourite sausage is an 'Italian' pork sausage in a book I have called Charcuterie by Ruhlman and Polcyn. So it's pork that is gumming up the works. Whether I use a fatty blend of trim I get from my butcher or his lean stuff which I add the fat to later same slow results.

When you guys say to mince when frozen how frozen are we talking? I would surely have to defrost a 5 kg blob enough to chop it up for the mincer shute?

Thanks in advance.
Henno
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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby NCPaul » Mon Sep 15, 2014 2:10 pm

Welcome to the forum! :D I use a similar unit and there are some things that will help. The meat should be chill in a sheet pan until it is "dry" to the touch; almost frozen but not quite. If I want a fine grind, I do a coarse one first then rechill the meat. I find that I have to eliminate all of the sinews and connective tissue for these type of grinders to work best. I spend more time trimming the meat than I do grinding it. I hope you are using a dedicated stuffer to fill the casings.
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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby wheels » Mon Sep 15, 2014 2:21 pm

Hi Henno, welcome.

It's worth checking that you're putting the blade in correctly. It needs to sit flat to the plate:

Image

So, when you assemble the machine, the blade is like so:

Image

The blade needs to be held tight to the plate, so screw the collar that holds it on really tight.

HTH

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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby vagreys » Mon Sep 15, 2014 4:09 pm

I par-freeze the meat before grinding, always. Not frozen - just short of frozen. I chill the grinder parts, plates and knives before grinding, always. I cube the meat and fat into chunks/cubes that fit down the throat of the grinder. I run the meat through a primary grind, using a 1/2" plate to make the chunks smaller, so they go through a fine plate easier, with less friction and less damage to meat and fat, before running it through a fine plate as a second grind. I par-freeze between grinds, if the meat is getting too warm. That's how I deal with finer grinds.
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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby thehenno » Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:09 am

Thanks guys.

It's not an assembly problem. The pics are the same as my grinder, I don't have stainless though.

I am in a rural area of Australia so am limited for choice in what I buy to grind. Have found a butcher that has cryo vacced 5kg bags of what he calls pork trim. He has this in lean or fat with different percentages.

I usually par freeze it before grinding the day after I home from my day in town shopping, this gives me little improvement even if I course grind first and refreeze so I really think it's an issue with the blades. This time I have done one 5kg batch but bought a second bag which I have completely frozen. What's the go if I defrost the entire bag enough to dice it and then refreeze for grinding? I always thought re freezing was a big no no with meat.

I am seriously considering giving the blade and plate a hone though.
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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby yotmon » Tue Sep 16, 2014 9:30 am

Looking at the spec' for the Kenwood MG450 it states that it can mince 1.5kg a minute, which is good going for a domestic mincer. When you start the 5kg, is it okay at the beginning and gets progressively worse or is it the same all the way through grinding ? Are you left with a lot of sinew/silverskin attached to the auger/blade. If so, then it may need trimming off prior to mincing. I normally 'firm up' the meat in the freezer but its still pliable when I mince it. Totally frozen would just put a strain on your mincer's motor.
Sanding down the blade and plate may work and shouldn't do any harm as long as you keep all surfaces completely flat so that there are no high spots.
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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby wheels » Tue Sep 16, 2014 3:17 pm

yotmon wrote:Sanding down the blade and plate may work and shouldn't do any harm as long as you keep all surfaces completely flat so that there are no high spots.


I'm told that taping fine 'sand' paper (one for metal) to a mirror is how people do this to ensure a flat surface.

However, unless the machine's had major use, I think that the answer lies elsewhere.

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Re: Fine grind problems.

Postby Wunderdave » Mon Sep 22, 2014 3:43 pm

I would double check to make sure your grinder is assembled right. The auger should be doing the work of pushing the meat through the plate, not the operator.

This sounds like there's some space between the blade and the grinder plate, so that the auger is essentially pushing the meat into the grinder plate with no help mincing it through. Check to make sure the plate is installed correctly (there should be a notch for alignment) and that it is very very tight against the blade which is tight against the auger.
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