A couple of weeks ago, I visited the National Trusts's Cragside. I was interested to see that their model of a pitchback wheel had a simple step at the end of the launder to kick the water flow upwards. This avoids the impulse of the water from opposing the motion of the wheel. Our wheel has been highly efficient since we re-boarded it, but there is never any harm in increasing efficiency - after all, we might have a dry season and be short of water.
With this in mind, Richard added an extra baffle board to the end of the launder to achieve a similar effect. When we tried it out, the wheel turned (not under milling load) with much less water than ever before.
We have also built part of a tun over the shelling stone, with a plastic window at the front. This is partly to improve the safety of the mill operators while the machinery is turning, and partly to show visitors what is going on in the milling tun.
The newly efficient wheel has enabled us to turn out much more flour than before in a standard weekend session, and we now have a good stock in the mill and the shop.
Other jobs have included cleaning out the tun and flour chute and improving their resistance to intrusion by mice and insects and continuing to expand the cobbled area - George is now working across the front of the barn.