Sandvik's Mill

Sandvik's Mill

Sandvik's mill is one of the world's largest windmills, and without comparison the largest in the Nordic region. It is of the Dutch type, which means that only the top, where the wings are attached, is rotatable.

Sandvik's mill is one of the world's largest windmills, and without comparison the largest in the Nordic region. It is of the Dutch type, which means that only the top, where the wings are attached, is rotatable. This is in contrast to the traditional Öland stump mills, where you simply turn the whole mill so that the wings face the wind. Around 400 stubble mills and about 20 Dutch ones are today preserved on Öland. Sandvik's Mill is very well preserved. As a rule, the stump mills were used for household needs, while the mill in Sandvik was a toll mill, i.e. you had to pay for grinding, either with money or grain.
Sandvik's mill was originally built in 1856 on the outskirts of Vimmerby. After a few years, the wings were blown down and the mill was used for other purposes. It was sold in 1885 and the new owner had the entire wooden structure dismantled. The parts were labeled and transported to Sandvik where the mill was rebuilt on a two-story high base of Öland limestone. The hired builder was helped by his son, who bought the mill in 1909 and ran it right into the 1950s. He sold it to the homestead association in 1955. A simpler coffee service was established. The kitchen etc. was modernized in 1964 and it became a restaurant instead, which has since been run by the same restaurant couple.
The bottom surface of the mill is approx. 140 square meters excluding the kitchen. It consists of eight floors and is approx. 26 m high. The distance between the wing tips is 24 m.

THE GROUND FLOOR had a wide carriageway with gates to the west and east where horse-drawn carriages drove in with their loads. The sacks were hoisted up through hatches to the fifth floor directly from the wagons. Initially, the miller's residence was in the southern part of the ground floor, but this later became a workshop. A crude oil engine was purchased in 1926 and an engine room was added. This became a kitchen in 1964 and was extended in 1978.
Today there is a modern restaurant kitchen here.

The SECOND FLOOR contained sieves, and flour bins for the finished flour. Later, three pairs of millstones were installed for the engine operation. Here the finished flour, which was in sacks, was unloaded.

THIRD FLOOR has sieves for wheat, grain and rye. The grain was ground on the fifth floor, screened on the fourth and third floors, and finally arrived on the second floor for delivery.

FOURTH FLOOR has, in addition to sieves, storage for all five pairs of millstones on the fifth floor. These were regulated with a lever system so that the distance between the heavy millstones (approx. 3 tons/pair) could be set with an accuracy of a few hundredths of a mm. From the large terrace, with the help of a thin chain, the entire dome can be turned so that the wings face the wind. Likewise, from here you could influence the brake on the eighth floor, by pulling on a rope that hung down. The wings originally had sails, which were later replaced by turning wooden flaps. These were mechanically connected and via link systems and ropes, the slope of the dampers could be changed from the terrace, as needed, while the wings were spinning.

THE FIFTH FLOOR contains five pairs of millstones, three pairs of cut limestone, one pair cast and one pair of lava stone. Here the grain was ground.

THE SIXTH FLOOR was used for elevators and for connecting and disconnecting current millstones.

THE SEVENTH FLOOR is finished with a ring of gears and wheels on which the dome rests. Here you can also see the three meter large crown wheel which is attached to the walking ridge (the axis to which the wings are attached). The power is transmitted to the vertical shaft via the crown wheel. This is surrounded by a number of wooden brake shoes, which by a system of levers can be made to clamp against the crown wheel and thus brake it.

The EIGHTH FLOOR, the dome, is completely rotatable. Here the gangway is stored. The crown wheel with the brake, called the pers, is also visible.

When you look at the mill, pay particular attention to the fact that the gears, paternoster mechanism and feed screws are carved from wood.