The Sandvik Mill

The Sandvik mill is without question the biggest mill in Scandinavia and one of the largest in the world. The mill is of Dutch design and is provided with fixed sails on a revolving cap and differs from the traditional Öland post-mill whereby the mill is turned into the wind manually. There are approximately 400 post-mills and about 20 Dutch style mills preserved on Öland. To this day the typical post-mill are used to meet local domestic requirements whereas the Sandvik mill is extremely well preserved and was used as a Toll mill where reimbursement was made by direct payment or grain. The Sandvik mill was originally built in 1856 on the outskirts of Wimmerby, Småland. Later the sails were blown down and the mill was used for other purposes before it was sold in 1885 when the new owner decided to dismantle the entire timber frame structure and machinery. The mill parts were numbered and transported to Sandvik where the mill was reassembled on a two story base of Öland limestone.
The builder was assisted by his son who acquired the mill in 1909 and operated it until the early 1950´s. The mill was then sold to the local homestead society in 1955 and turned into a simple coffee shop. In 1964 the kitchen was modernised and converted into a restaurant and has been operated by the same licensee since then.
The mill consisting of eight floors is 26 metres in height and has a base area of 140 square meters excluding the kitchen. The distance between the sail tips is 24 metres.

THE FIRST FLOOR contained a wide thoroughfare for horse drawn transport provided with east and west gates. The sacks were hoisted from carts through a number of trap doors, to the fifth floor. The miller was originally housed in the first floor southern wing but this was later converted to a workshop. A machine room and a crude oilmotor were added in 1926. This was converted to a kitchen in 1964 and enlarged in 1978 and is at present a modern restaurant kitchen.

THE SECOND FLOOR accommodated seperators and grain storage bins. Three pairs of millstones were later installed when the mill was motorised. The grain was loaded into sacks from this floor.

THE THIRD FLOOR includes seperators for wheat, course meal, and rye. The grain was ground on the fifth floor, separated on the third and fourth floors and then sent to the second floor for unloading.

THE FOURTH FLOOR includes separators and head bearings for all five pairs of millstones on the fifth floor. These were controlled by a system of levers that adjusted the distance between the millstones (approx. 3 tons/pair) to a degree of accuracy of a few hundreds of millimetres. The mill cap is operated from the gallery by a thin chain that turns the sails into the wind. Pulling a rope from the gallery activated the mill brake located on the eight floor.
The mill sails were originally designed for cloth but were replaced by adjustable wooden shutters which were linked by a series of connecting rods and ropes whereby the shutters were adjusted from the gallery as required during operation.

THE FIFTH FLOOR was utilised for grinding and contains five millstone pairs comprising three hewn in limestone, one cast and one of lava-rock.

THE SIXTH FLOOR was used for winching purposes and operation of each separate millstone.

THE SEVENTH FLOOR includes the mill curb on which the mill cap is mounted. The three metre brake wheel can also be seen mounted on the windshaft ( shaft on which the sails are located ). Power is transmitted to the vertical shaft from the brake wheel.
The brake wheel is provided with a wooden brandbrake which when activated by a series of ropes and levers connect around the brake wheel rim.

THE EIGHT FLOOR includes the mill cap, which revolves when operated. The windshaft and the brake wheel complete with brake can also be seen.
Your special attention is made to the spur wheel, endless chain conveyor and screw conveyors which are all carves in wood.

Come and see one of the world's biggest windmills. A feat of engineering from the nineteenth century.

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