The Mini Sheller is a residential-to-small farm pea sheller machine for sale on a limited number of websites. I’ve been looking over and testing an early production model in my office. It is essentially a more affordable version of the light-commercial pea sheller, “The Little Sheller“.
The Mini Pea Sheller (pictured middle) is clearly larger than the Electric Mr. Pea Sheller (left) and about 2/3 the size of big brother, the Taylor Little Sheller (right). The hand crank Mr. Pea Sheller (in hand) is pictured just for completeness. The Mini Sheller will fit in a closet or on a shelf in the garage with ease.
The Mini Sheller is very well built. The all aluminum frame will never rust. The 1/10 HP motor provides plenty of power. I was really glad to see the adjustable rollers. The most expensive part of this pea sheller is the motor, if it goes it may be time to consider getting a new machine. Fortunately, Taylor uses a high quality-American made- 105 volt (standard three-prong household current) 1/10 hp motor that is fan-cooled with thermal protection. There is a lot in that last sentence, so let’s break it down:
Is 1/10 Horsepower enough?
1/10 horsepower is more than enough for a bean sheller machine of this size. It will not bog down under the heaviest of loads, not even crowder peas or butter beans.
An internal fan pulls hot air away from the motor. Since this pea sheller machine is expected to be worked outside in hot and humid temperatures, the internal fan should keep things humming along. We tested it under a simulated moderate load for 16 hours straight without any trouble. For safety though, there is a thermal sensor that will temporarily shut off the motor to protect it from overheating. I was unable to trip it in my test runs. However, it should be noted that once the motor temperature drops to a safe level, the motor will restart automatically unless it is turned off or unplugged! So, in the most unlikely event that it does shut off from overheating, please be sure to unplug it from the wall or turn it off! It is a 3 pronged plug. For those of who don’t know, the third prong is a ground to prevent a electrical shock or fire in case of a short-circuit.
The frame is smaller than the Little Sheller which provides for a sturdier machine. The aluminum frame will not rust, so it will withstand humid temperatures. Below is a side by side comparison of the Mini (left) and Little (right) Pea Sheller.
Most pea sheller rollers are designed to push the peas out the back of the pea pod. The rollers on the Mini Sheller are specially designed to rip the hull down the seam and roll the peas out of the zipper. This dramatically reduces bruising and increases yield. A lot of time and attention, trial-and-error, went into the material and texture of the Mini Sheller rollers. If the material is too hard the rollers won’t grab the hull to pull them through, but if it is too soft, then the peas get mashed. Texture, like tire trends, have a great deal to do with performance as well. The speed of the rollers have been scientifically calculated for optimal yield as well. If the rollers turn too fast the peas get mashed before they can safely exit the pod. If the rollers are too slow, then the hull does not tear open and the peas get mashed. This is just another example of the great detail that went into making this pea sheller machine. Unlike the Electric Mr. Pea Sheller, these rollers are easily adjustable for cow peas to butter beans. It is recommended to make adjustments in 1/2 to 3/4 turn increments.
This is about as idiot-proof as a 50 year-old design is going to get. There are 10’s of thousands of Little Sheller Pea machines in use, I’ve not heard of one serious accident. Taylor really does give safety a high priority. As with the Little Sheller, the Mini Sheller has metal guards on both sides of the rollers. The guards are easy to put on and easy to adjust. There is also a belt guard which really stands out in the black plastic. I like it much better than the metal belt guard on the Little Sheller. Once installed it is unlikely that anyone would need to take it off as the belt will last decades even under heavy use. These guards are put into place to prevent any accidents involving belts and rollers.
Some people want an instruction book the size of a novel, but here is the breakdown of use in the simplest form:
- Step 1. Set Mini Sheller on a sturdy table.
- Step 2. Plug-in to 3-prong properly wired outlet.
- Step 3. Turn on
- Step 4. Push peas length-wise until rollers grab the pea hulls.
- Step 5. Repeat step 4 until complete.
- Step 6. Turn off Mini Sheller.
- Step 7. Unplug Mini Sheller from outlet.
- Step 8. Clean with damp rag.
- Step 9. Store in a closet or sturdy shelf.
- Step 10. Brag about it to everyone you meet and tell them to get their own Mini Sheller at PeaSheller.net.
- Overall Size: 23.5″L X 14.5″W X 10.5″H
- Shelling Bed Size: 16.5″l X 8.5″W
- Weight: 17.5 lbs
- Motor: 1/10 hp (USA Made)
- Construction: Aluminum body (verified domestic metal only)
- Country: U.S.A.
Head on over to PeaSheller.net and order your very own! They always go fast when pea season hits, so don’t wait and miss out.