Rod mills are long cylinders filled with steel rods that grind by compressive forces and abrasion. The length of the cylinder is typically 1.5 to 2.5 times longer than the diameter. As the mill turns, the rods cascade over each other in relatively parallel fashion. One of the primary advantages of a rod mill is that it prevents over-grinding of softer particles because coarser particles act as bridges and preferentially take the compressive forces. Rod mills can take particles as coarse as 5 cm. Many of the newer operations tend to install ball mills in combination with SAG mills and avoid rod mills due the cost of the media, the cost of replacing rods and general maintenance costs. Many older operations have rod mills in combination with ball mills.