I have a Bodum Bistro grinder that I bought used a couple of months ago, and have been fairly impressed with. It started making a horrible gear-grinding noise today, after getting a very small, very hard bean stuck in the burrs. Being physiologically incapable of doing otherwise, I tore it down to see what had happened.
I was shocked to see that the (delrin? nylon?) gears actually aren't all chewed up at all. They were just choked with dirty, messy, nasty, oily grinds, presumably keeping the motor shaft from engaging properly. I ran the gearbox through the dishwasher to clean it all out, and I think there's hope that this thing will work again when I put it back together.
But I just had a horrible thought: The gearbox isn't sealed. Maybe the mess in the gearbox was a combination of grinds and grease.
Thoughts please: should I be packing the gears with silicon grease before I put it all back together?
Update: What I did
I used white lithium grease, after applying foil tape to seal openings between the coffee area and the gearbox area, figuring that there would be a very low likelihood of the grease aerosolizing and getting into the coffee area.
Reassembly was a bear, though. I ended up hardwiring past the rocker switch.
2.5 Years Later:
It's been 2.5 years, and I have not tasted the grease, and the grinder is still running strong.