That's right, a man plants a tree and after a few decades another man cuts it down. Usually it happens after 80-110 years. All these years the tree is gaining strength, putting strength into its trunk, its core and its sapwood. But it grows strongest in the areas above the roots and in the areas of damage. These are the places where it pushes all the strength of the earth. And it is here, here that the most beautiful, unusual wood patterns are born, and from them the most beautiful mills. This is the wood I use to make them. Then all it takes is one hand and a little luck. Hands that cut and glue two pieces of wood together, clamp the block in the lathe and, with the help of its rotational motion and the chisel in the hands of the turner, work the wood into just the right shape. The lathe, a tool used since the glory days of Egypt, spins the wood in one direction and when the chisel, which the turners call a "struh", is brought to bear, it rattles and tiny shavings of wood begin to fly off. With the help of the so-called stroking plane, a perfectly smooth surface can be achieved by machining.
So what about happiness? That's easy, turning is an unforgiving activity. Just a small mistake in the form of an improperly rotated blade against the wood, a moment of inattention, and you will be punished with a degraded wood or a minor injury or even a big kick... after all, the cylinders of the mill diameter rotate at speeds of up to 2500 rpm per minute and the sharp turning chisel is guided by the hands of man.
The mills created in my workshop are entirely handmade. The production of a mill usually takes an hour, sometimes two, and it is not uncommon that it takes even longer. It depends on the shape, height and type of material used. Most of the time I know where the wood comes from, in many cases I bring the wood from the forest to the sawmill myself in winter and let it dry in the shed for several years.
One of the nice things about making mills is the finishing touch. I use oils or mixtures of oils and waxes that are certified for direct food contact. The oils color the wood beautifully and protect it from water intrusion. Regular care in the form of simply rubbing the wood with oil and then removing the unsoaked oil with a cloth will make your grinder like new again.
And what about the heart of the mill? Well, that's the grinding mechanism. For grinding pepper, it can be made of alloy steel or, even better, ceramic. The hardness of ceramic surpasses steel, it doesn't carry any odours and the wear is in the order of decades. CrushGrind® provides a 25-year warranty on the ceramic part of the grinder mechanism. Is that too much or not enough? It's hard to say, either way, I make my grinders with honesty, precision, and the knowledge that they will last you for many years...