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Design

Argos Hill Windmill is a post mill, which means that its whole body turns 360 degrees around a central post to face the wind. It has three floors within the mill body and a one-story roundhouse at the base.

The windmill has a number of important features that are either very rare or unique:

1. There is an extension to the rear of the mill body, which gives the mill an unusual shape.

2. The fantail is fitted to the tailpole rather than the steps. There is only one other example of this arrangement still in existence (at Jill mill, Sussex).

3. The bin attic ladder rises through a butress-like tunnel, which is unique to this mill.

4. The main post is made up of four pieces of pine (instead of the more common solid oak post)

5. Rollers are fitted around the main post to help the mill turn to wind.

6. There is a unique lock on the spout floor. There are no other known examples of this in the world.

The main design features are described in detail below:

Bin Floor

Bin floor
The bin floor at the top of the mill houses the bins which hold the grain. The bins are very neatly arranged, which is unusual.

The sack hoist is also found on this floor.

Stone Floor

Stone floor
The stone floor is directly below the bin floor. The windshaft, brake wheel, tail wheel and brake can all be seen on this floor.

There are two pairs of stones - one Peak and one French Burr. The Peak stone is run from the brake wheel while the French Burr is run from the tail wheel - both connected via a quant and stone nut. There is also a wheat cleaner, a flour dresser and a grind stone (for sharpening mill bills) on this floor.

Spout Floor

Spout floor
The spout floor is directly below the stone floor. The spouts deliver the milled flour to the meal bins.

The massive centre post, samson head and crown tree can be viewed on this foor.

Of particular note is the unique door lock.

Roundhouse

Roundhouse
The roundhouse is directly below the spout floor. It protects the trestle from the weather and can be used as a store room.

The trestle is formed of four quarter-bars which take the weight of the mill from the centre post. They are fastened to two crosstrees which lay on four brick piers.

Sails

Sails
The windmill was fitted with four patent sails (or "sweeps" as they are known in the South East). The mill is currently without sails.

Each sail has 51 shutters which are automatically controlled by the striking gear. As the wind speed increases the shutters open to allow the wind to spill through, which allows them to maintain a fairly constant speed. Patent sails are regarded as the pinnacle of windmill sail design.

Fantail

Tailpole, steps and fantail
The fantail assembly is of traditional Sussex design. The fantail is fastened to the tailpole, which is independent of the steps.

The fantail drives the two wooden cart wheels on the track around the mill, to keep the sails facing into the wind.