Research was done by the Bureau of Mines to determine the effect of a low-molecular-weight polymer on wet grinding of quartz, dolomite, and a copper ore. A 5-in ball mill equipped with a torque sensor for precise measurement of input energy was used for batch grinding tests. Grinding parameters were determined from size distribution data on the feed material and ground product. Zeta potential measurements were made to determine the effect of the polymer on the surface properties of the three materials, and a viscometer was used to measure the effect of the polymer on slurry viscosity. The addition of the polymer caused a sharp increase in the negative value of the zeta potential for all three materials, indicating that pronounced adsorption was taking place. At a constant slurry percent solids, addition of the polymer caused a similar reduciton in slurry viscosity for each material. For quartz, dolomite, and the copper ore, grinding efficiency, as measured by kilogram of product per kilowatt hour passing a given screen size, was not affected by the addition of the polymer. However, the lowering in slurry viscosity caused by addition of the polymer permits grinding at a higher slurry percent solids.