I got hands on a beautiful small antique pepper grinder, made from brass and with beautiful decorations. It was not in a too desolate condition, but it needed some cleaning, some polishing and the grinding gear was stuck.
Disassembling was trouble-free and the stuck gear just resulted from some age-old, petrified ground pepper remnants. Easy to remove with a little alcohol, an awl and compressed air. It got a thorough cleaning with trivial soap water and my toothbrush, removing the dirt. Then some wire brushing at the drill press. Cleaning the inside works well with a dremel tool and again a suitable wire brush insert. It’s important to clean the insides thoroughly from any abrasive dust afterwards.
Since I ran out of polishing paste for the buffing wheel, I gave it a little car polish by hand and reassembled the whole thing using ordinary sunflower oil to provide some lubrication for the grinder shaft.
It works like a charm again now, and I like it for it’s delicate, antique appearance.