The Mini-BeadBeater-24 disrupts microbial cells and plant and animal tissue by violently agitating four to twentyfour 2 ml screw-cap microvials containing small glass, ceramic or steel beads and 0.1 to 1 ml disruption buffer. The performance of the Mini-BeadBeater equals or exceeds that of any other type or brand of cell disrupter. Even resistant samples like yeast, spores or fibrous tissue are completely homogenized in 1-3 minutes. The non-foaming, aerosol-free method preserves enzymes and organelles. In the presence of nucleic acid extraction media such as phenol, Gu-SCN or a commercial kit solution, DNA or RNA is recovered in the highest possible yield. The method is ideal for PAGE, PCR applications, and diagnostics using antibody or oligonucleotide probes. Because the beads and vials are disposable, there is absolutely zero cross-contamination between samples – essential for PCR techniques.

he Mini-Beadbeater-24 can also be used for dry grinding. Here, steel beads are added to hard samples such as hair, bone, teeth, seeds and minerals and are powdered in 10-60 seconds of operation. Resistant materials such as tendon, cartilage, rubber or some plastics can be powdered by pre-freezing the sample to liquid nitrogen temperatures (cryo-grinding), then grinding in the hard frozen state. Dry-grinding requires using special microvials resistant to breakage. When dry grinding with ceramic or steel beads at room temperature our ‘XXTuff’ microvials are recommended. Our Stainless steel microvials are available for dry grinding with steel beads at cryo-temperatures.

Buying Tips….

SHAKING TIME:  If you are harvesting expressed proteins, for example, you need close to 100% cell disruption.  But, if you want nucleic acids for PCR amplification, perhaps a partial disruption of cells is acceptable.  Some manufacturers claim disruption times of less than 30 seconds.  That may be fine for PCR work, but not for blotting.

SHAKING SPEED:  Some manufacturers of beadbeaters (bead-mill) machine offer speed settings expressed in an ill-defined term: meters/second.  The term combines measurable shaking speeds with vial displacements to create a unit presumed to define cell disruption power.  Unfortunately, no unit is available that comprehensively defines cell disruption efficiency of bead mill grinding machines.  Were it to exist, such a term would need to take into consideration not only shaking speed and distance of vial displacement, but also shaking direction (vertical vs.horizontal), shaking pattern (linear vs.figure eight), kinetics of change in shaking direction (sigmoidal vs. square wave), vial size and shape and other engineering variables.  Clearly, the interplay of these variables is complex. They must be taken into consideration in the design of a high performance cell disrupter machine and, as might be expected, some machines achieve this goal better than others. Additionally, most published protocols rarely call for shaking speeds below the maximum shaking speed available from the machine.  Thus, speed control, when available, can be viewed as a ‘bell and whistle’ feature.


  • Power: 115 volts, 60 Hz, 7.5 amps or 230 volts, 50 Hz, 3.7 amps
  • Width: 10 in. Depth: 18 in. Height: 12 in. Weight 47 pounds
  • Shaking pattern: Uses proven, more efficient near horizontal vial orientation
  • Capacity: four to twenty four screw-cap microvials (0.5, 1.5, and 2.0 ml) each containing to 400 mg (wet weight) bio-sample
  • Shaking speed: Digitally variable from 2400-3800 strokes/min.  The calculated M/sec “performance” value is greater than all competitive beadbeater-type cell disrupters on the market.
  • Throw or stroke displacement: 7/8 inches
  • Controller: Digital 0-5 minute with auto reset and 3 programmable presets
  • Magnetic lid interlock cuts power to the Mini-BeadBeater-24 if the lid is opened at any time.
  • Removable vial-holding cassette
  • No imposed motor cool-down-time between each sample run
  • The Mini-BeadBeater-24 uses standard screw-cap plastic microvials. Stainless steel microvials or special reinforced polypropylene microvials ( XXTuff vials ) are available for dry- or cryo-milling with steel beads. Eight larger capacity, 7 ml vials can be processed using an accessory vial-holding ring (see Parts and Accessories below).