So my question is, can anyone comment on the pros and cons of
a 4:1 gear reducer.
By experience, I say if you use a lot of sheet and will be using
the mill, the gear setup is the way to go if you can’t have a
power mill. I suspect that your salesman would find that most
buyers opt for the lower priced mill without the gears because of
cash concerns.(a lot to buy to get started.) You could also
convert the mill to power yourself later, which is what most I
know do. This being the case, you won’t need the 4:1 gears, but
others. I personally, having used a lot of varieties, hate to use
a hand mill without gears, but you do what you gotta do, right?