Design of the Week: Pepper Mill Funnel

By on July 10th, 2023 in Design, news

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Pepper mill funnel [Source: Thingiverse]

This week’s selection is the Pepper Mill Funnel by Maxime Hoste.

Hoste, a.k.a. “Siroxyl” online, solved a very common problem found in most kitchens: spilled pepper.

This happens to me every time I try to fill my pepper mill. The tiny peppercorns are hard and have irregular surfaces, meaning they tend to bounce strongly in unpredictable directions.

The act of pouring peppercorns into the mill almost always results in multiple peppercorns bouncing off into the distance, only to be found months later hidden in corners of your kitchen.

Recently I’ve been trying to minimize this effect by cupping my hand around the mill’s opening, but that is a hit-and-miss affair. Some peppercorns unexpectedly stick to my hand and fall off later, and my hands, big though they are, don’t wrap entirely around the Peppermill opening.

Pepper mill funnel [Source: Thingiverse]

Hoste’s solution is brilliant: it’s a funnel that would be inserted into the mill to correctly guide stray peppercorns inside. You’d have this funnel handy beside your bag of peppercorns, ready for use when the mill is empty.

Design of the pepper mill funnel [Source: Fabbaloo]

It’s a ridiculously simple design, as you can imagine. But the magic here is in the incredible utility of the object once printed. You should never have a peppercorn spill ever again.

As this is a kitchen 3D print, the question of food safety must be discussed. Since food (the peppercorns) would be touching the print, it is theoretically possible for them to pick up chemicals from the funnel.

The best practice would be to coat the funnel with a food safe epoxy resin before use.

However, in this case the exposure would be incredibly limited. Only some of the peppercorns would hit the funnel, and then only for a split second with a very tiny surface area being engaged. It would seem there is very little opportunity for chemical exposure here, as compared to, say, pouring milk into a 3D printed cereal bowl where liquids could transfer chemicals.

My print of the pepper mill funnel seemed to fit well [Source: Fabbaloo]

The funnel is, as you might have guessed, a rather simple item to print, requiring no supports. One potential complication is the diameter of the funnel: does it fit your specific pepper mill? If not, then it’s pretty easy to resize the object appropriately using your slicing software: measure the gaps in the funnel and the mill, and shrink/enlarge the 3D model to the same ratio.

If you have a pepper mill in your kitchen, it deserves to have this accessory.

Via Thingiverse

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!

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