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How a Flat Die Pellet Mill works?

Roller_die

  1. The pressing or compression action uses a flat die with holes and a roller
  2. Raw material in powder form is introduced at the top of the die
  3. The pressing action of the die and roller forces the raw material into the holes of the die (usually 6 or 8 mm)
  4. At the other side of the die, the compressed raw material exits in cylindrical shape form
  5. An automatic cutter cuts the pellet according to the preferred length, about 30 mm
  6. There are two types of compression action – Rotating Die Or Rotating Roller

Buying a flat die pellet mill

UsingFlatdiepelletmill

  1. Designed for small-scale production – Ideal for use in your residential home
  2. Simple die and roller technology – Easy to learn, easy to operate &easy to maintain
  3. Cheaper to build – Easy on your wallet
  4. Compact size machine – A small area at home is only needed to start your wood pellet production
  5. Make your own pellets – You control the quality, cost and quantity of your production

Rotating Die Vs Rotating Roller

Rotating Die

Rotating die demo

For Rotating die type, the flat die rotates with a stationary twin roller on top.  As the die rotates, raw material (in powder form) introduced on top is forced into the holes of the die by the stationary roller

You may want to consider this type of pellet mill if you:

  1. Have little or no experience in producing your own pellets
  2. Prefer to pay less for a flat die pellet mill
  3. Choose to incur lower electricity cost
  4. Are very sure your raw material consists of only soft wood type*
  5. No strict requirement on pellet quality

ALL SUPERIOR models USE ROTATING DIE type

* – Note: FOR ROTATING DIE PELLET MILL – YOU SHOULD ONLY USE SOFT WOOD RAW MATERIAL.  FAILURE TO DO SO WILL RESULT IN DIE/ROLLER DAMAGE AND VOID YOUR WARRANTY

Rotating Roller

Rotating roller demo

For rotating roller type, the twin roller rotates around a stationary flat die, and forcing the raw material (in powder form) into the holes of the die.

You may want to consider this if you:

  1. Possess some understanding about pellet production
  2. Can stretch your budget to pay more for such pellet mill
  3. Are OK with slightly higher electricity cost
  4. Prefer to produce better quality pellets

Rotating Roller has stronger compression strength compared to rotating die type and therefore, it can be used with hardwood raw material as well as softwood

ALL PREMIUM models USE ROTATING ROLLER type

Before you Buy

b4ubuy

  1. Prepare or plan your production area = at least 3 times the size of the pellet maker
  2. Preferably install your pellet maker in a confined space, e.g. garden shed or unused garage (to contain noise & dust)
  3. If your production area is outdoor and open space, please ensure that your neighbors are not affected by the noise and dust
  4. Ensure that you have a dry and enclosed area to store your pellets.  Newly make wood pellets, upon cooling down should be kept in air-sealed bags to avoid atmospheric moisture contamination
  5. Electricity – If you are buying the electric motor version, be sure to check that the electricity in your house can supply the required amount of power. If not, you may need to install a higher voltage first. *
  6. If you are new at producing your own pellets, begin with a model that comes with a small capacity♮
  7. You should source for a good supply of raw material that suit your pellet maker. We fully recommend recycled sawdust from a sawmill, with moisture content of around 12%. If possible, check if it comes from hardwood or softwood

Note: * – Superior series model comes with 2.2Kw or 3Kw electric motor single-phase 220V. Premium series model uses 415V 3-phase electric motor three-phase. Check them out at our products page.

Note: ♮- Check out our most affordable pellet maker, HPM12S using single-phase electric motor.

My Home Pellet Maker Arrives Today, What Next?

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At RAW, we understand that while most of our customers have some experience in handling outdoor equipment, there are some who might not have such knowledge. That’s why when you buy our Home Pellet Maker, your purchase is almost ready to be used.
1. CONNECT, PLUG & PLAY OUT OF THE BOX – Simply get ready your local electrical cable and plug, connect to the electrical box (follow instruction manual) and plug into the socket and the machine* is ready to use.
2. READY TO USE OUT OF THE BOX – Your HOME PELLET MAKER’S moving parts have been greased and its gear box fully topped up with gear oil. Therefore, there is no need for spills and unnecessary mess whilst topping up.@
3. SIMPLE MIXTURE TO PREPARE YOUR DIE – You only need a 20 kg bag of flour and fine sand (or sawdust) equal mixture, and a 1.5 liter bottle of vegetable oil.  Simply pour the mixture into a bucket and mix it thoroughly with the vegetable oil.  With the machine switched on, pour this mixture into the feed hopper and collect them with another bucket at the pellet chute (output).  Repeat this step 10-20 times.  Your die is ready!
YOUR HOME PELLET MAKER IS NOW READY TO PRODUCE WOOD PELLETS!
As a bonus, we will throw in a 10kg bag of dried sawdust+ for you to start producing your wood pellets. +
Note:
* – Connect, Plug & Play is only applicable for HPM12S and HPM15S models, where a single-phase electric motor of 220V and 50Hz is used, provided your country’s power supply is compatible with the motor specifications.  Please consult your relevant local authorities to confirm if you are unsure.  Do note that failure to comply with the motor specification requirements will result in equipment damage that will void your equipment warranty, and possibly incur human injury, of which RAW and the equipment supplier will not be liable
@ – Due to lengthy shipment time, buyers are strongly encouraged to check the grease and gear oil are still fully topped up before starting any production
+ – Some country customs may forbid such shipment for various reasons

Good time to consider converting your crop straws into pellets… on your own

stalk_picMost of us are familiar with this piece of advice, ‘If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.’  The uses of crop straw are endless: natural fertilizers, fodder and bedding for livestock, basket weaving and home insulation, the list goes on and on.  Crop straw are excellent raw material for producing heat and/or electricity.  So, what exactly can farm owners benefit from by converting these straw into pellets, and what is the estimated initial capital outlay?

 

For a start, consider the following facts of using straw pellets for fuel:

 

  1. Straw pellets contain a higher calorific value than crop straws, which produce more heat and energy per unit:
     
    S/no Biomass Approx. calorific value (MJ/Kg)
    1 Canola 16.3
    2 Wheat 18.0
    3 Rice 18.0
    4 Corn 16.0
    5 Soybean 22.0
    6 Cotton 15.5
    7 Sugarcane 18.0
  2. Natural crop straw have product energy density of around 140kg/m3 in bale form.  In pellet form, the energy density can increase to as much as 650kg/m3
  3. Straw pellets possess qualities such as: low moisture content, high energy, homogeneous size and shape, which contribute to the consistent heat and/or electricity
  4. Straw pellets are clean and an environmentally friendly alternative to oil and gas.  Burning them emits almost zero CO2 emission because during the plant growth stage, it absorbs almost the same amount of CO2 as it produces during burning
  5. Producing straw pellets can be a cheaper option for generating heat since farm owners can obtain crop residue as raw materials for almost free
  6. Easy storage for long period – Using sealed bags, the pellets can be easily transported and/or stored for long periods of time
  7. Ash content is 5% or less, and the residual ash after burning can be used as mineral fertilizer

Using straw pellets for animal bedding have several advantages over natural straw:

  1. Easier and more economical to transport (better weight/volume ratio)
  2. Easy to store and use (pour out from bucket like sand)
  3. Easy to maintain and clean

The usage of straw pellets as fuel has been around for a while, as commercial factories across the world have been producing them in large quantities and selling them to be used for both residential and commercial purposes.  So what about farm owners that are left with a large amount of crop residue (e.g. straw) after harvesting? It’s equally possible for them to convert these to pellets right in their own homes, only requiring two machines for a start – a hammer mill to pulverize crop straw, and a compact pellet mill to compress them into pellets.  The estimated initial capital outlay, for starters, is around USD1500.00* but the actual figure will depend on output expectation.  The process includes three main steps:

  1. Drying of crop straws – It’s not necessary to convert them into bales.  Drying them under the sun is an almost free option.  Ensure that the straws achieve 15% or less moisture content first
  2. Pulverizing the crop straws – Load the dried crop straws into the hammer mill.  Ensure that no foreign particles such as stones, rocks or metallic particles
  3. Pelleting the pulverized straws – Load them into a compact pellet mill and collect the hot pellets in a basket.  Leave it to cool before storing them in sealed bags

(Note: * – this excludes shipping and port custom charges)

Good time to consider converting your livestock droppings into fertilizer pellets… on your own

droppings_picConverting your livestock droppings into fertilizer pellets involves 3 main steps.  However, before you dive into it, it is important to know about your livestock droppings and how it behaves as a fertilizer.  No droppings are produced the same and hence, taking time to understand them will help you use them to their greatest potential.  Here, we summarize some key facts to give you a head start.

Most raw droppings have a high level of nitrogen, which, instead of encouraging growth, will destroy the roots of plants, resulting in unhealthy looking plants.  Such droppings are usually labelled as ‘hot’ manure.  Before you pelletize them, these droppings have to be composted to achieve the carbon to nitrogen ratio balance of 25:1.

The droppings of large herbivores such as horses and cows usually have the ideal carbon-to-nitrogen ratio of 25:1.  This means that you can add them directly to the soil without the concern of over fertilizing.  These droppings are labelled as ‘cool’ manure.

Generally, the more grass an animal consumes as its diet, the lower the nitrogen content of its droppings.  Animals that prefer woody plants (goats) or vegetables (rabbits) have more concentrated nutrients in their feces.  In general, the more grass an animal has in its diet, the lower the nitrogen content.  Animals that like to eat woody plants (goats) or vegetables (rabbits) have more concentrated nutrients in their feces.  Hence, their manure is relatively ‘cool’ and safe to use without composting.  However, to be on the safer side, experts recommend aging it first for at least a month or two.

On the other hand, manure from omnivores such as chickens and pigs are considered very ‘hot’ manures – they possess high level of nitrogen, and have high bad odors.  On this note, it is necessary to compost omnivore manure thoroughly before using, rather than aging it.

Approximate Carbon-to-Nitrogen Ratios of Select Manures:

Animal  Carbon-to-Nitrogen
Cow 25-1
Horse 20-1
Sheep 15-1
Swine 12-1
People 10-1
Poultry 7-1

 

Referring to the ratios above, pig droppings, among the omnivore species, have the mildest manure in terms of nitrogen content.  Hence, according to some websites, you can mix these droppings at a 1-to-1 ratio with straw, dried leaves or wood shavings to create a well-balanced compost pile.  Pig droppings also have a high pH level, thus making acidic soils more neutral.

Even though you have effectively composted your manures, i.e. achieving the 25:1 Carbon-to-Nitrogen ratio, it is also important to know that different manures have their own unique characteristics and fertilizing suitability.  For example, poultry manure (chickens), contain high levels of phosphorus, making this a suitable choice for growing flowers and fruits. Chicken manure is also more acidic and a good choice for growing blueberries.

A word regarding carnivores – their manure is one of the richest, and experts strongly recommend against using these for plants that are for human consumption, since there is a risk of pathogen contamination.

Finally, the 3 main steps for pelletizing composted manure:

  1. Drying of composted manure – Drying them under the hot sun is an almost free and ideal option. However, it may take days to achieve the optimum moisture content of 15% or less.  Alternatively, you may wish to invest in a rotating drum dryer that provides a much faster drying process.  Rotating drum dryers require heat from a furnace to dry the composted manure
  2. Removal of foreign objects – Before you load the dried composted manure into the pellet mill, ensure that foreign objects like rocks, stones or even metallic substances are removed.  You can remove them manually or invest in a mechanical sieve.  Foreign objects can potentially jam and damage the holes of the pellet mill die
  3. Pelleting the dried composted manual – Load them into a compact pellet mill and collect the pellets in a basket.  As the freshly produced pellets are hot, leave them to cool first before storing them in sealed bags

Good time to consider converting your feed crops into pellets… on your own

straw_picFarmers have been feeding baled feed crops (e.g. hay) to their livestock for a long time, with little or no issues.  So what benefits are there to convert these feed crops into pellets? And what are the steps involved in producing pellets on their own?

Producing feed pellets on your own using your homegrown feed crops is simpler than the processes involved in commercial production, which requires heavy capital investment and labor.  The steps for homegrown pellet production are as indicated:

 

 

  1. Identify a suitable place for pellet production – Preferably a sheltered area, away from rain.  If wired power is available, it will come in handy for electric motor machines.  If not, diesel engine powered machines are good alternatives.  A compact hammer mill and a compact pellet mill are required, which shouldn’t cost more than $2000.00*
  2. Besides the feed crop, identify additional ingredients to be included in your feed e.g. vitamins, bran, maize and other grains
  3. Ensure that your feed crop maintain a moisture content of 20% or less
  4. Pulverize this mixture using a hammer mill
  5. Before loading the mixture into the pellet mill, consider also mixing them with liquid ingredients such as oil, molasses or fats
  6. Once you are satisfied with the mixture content, load them into the pellet mill
  7. Collect the pellets in a bucket. Let it cool for a while.  Then store them in sealed bags (keep away moisture)

There are many articles written on the benefits of feed pellets.  I have summarized the main benefits below:

  1. Easy storage – A measure of hay pellets takes up less storage than an equal measure of baled hay.  This allows you to produce more feed and store them without the need for additional storage
  2. Feed pellets can be stored in sealed bags, which keep moisture and rodents at bay
  3. Feed pellets allow the addition of nutrients necessary for the improvement of your livestock’s.  You can add vitamins, bran, maize or other nutritious ingredients into the pellet machine
  4. Easier to chew – Although eating long-stem feed crops isn’t a problem for normal livestock, there are some with poor dentition, and pellets come in very handy
  5. Pellets have more surface area put together, exposing these pellets to more enzymes in your livestock’s digestive tract, improving digestion and ultimately the overall health of your animals
  6. Clean consumption – pellets can be consumed in a bucket without the risk of contamination with manure or urine on the ground.  Furthermore, nothing gets blown away or left wasted.  Everything is consumed from the bucket (or any container)
  7. Monitoring the feed – Pellets inside a bucket easily allow you to weigh the content, hence, you can manage how much your livestock eats a day
  8. Pellets are free from dust, weed, bugs, twigs and even tiny metallic objects, all of which can potentially cause harm to your livestock

(Note: * – this excludes shipping and port custom charges)