In a sense, picking up your first herb grinder is a bit like a rite of passage—you’re stepping out of the newbie days of pinching and scissor-chopping and into a more formal way of herb prep. Yet, one look at the many types, sizes, and price points of herb grinders, and you may feel a bit overwhelmed about the options. Here’s a quick guide of things to know, what to look for, and a few herb grinder recommendations.
Are herb grinders necessary?
To get the smooth smoke you want, an herb grinder is one of the most important accessories to have on hand. An absolute necessity?
Not completely, but definitely a worthy investment for a quality smoking experience. Herb that has been put through a good grinder comes out in uniform pieces that are easier to roll, burn more evenly, and don’t have you running into a big seed or stem. Plus, ground flower tends to work better in pipes or bongs.
How do herb grinders actually work?
Most grinders are made with the same conceptual designs; you have a top and a base and tiny jagged teeth inside that break down plant matter when you twist the top and base together. While this same concept stays the same, you will find quite a few variations, and this is why it can get tricky to find the best grinder.
Important Things to Consider When Buying an Herb Grinder
As you browse through a collection of herb grinders with cool names like SLX and flashy colors and chrome, a few good pointers can help you find just the grinder you need. Here are a few things to consider as you shop.
What size is the grinder?
Size really matters when it comes to herb grinders. Most grinders will clearly be labeled with their widths, such as 1.5, 2.2, 2.5, or even 3 inches wide or larger. Just keep in mind that there will be a huge difference in how much herb the sizes can hold and grind based on width. For example, a 1.5 is much smaller in terms of capacity than a 2.5.
Smaller grinders like the Sabertooth 1.5-inch Premium grinder are awesome to slip in your pocket or have on the go to grind just enough for a quick smoke. But sometimes you may need a larger grinder like the Mendo Mulcher, which is 3-inches wide.
Two-piece, three-piece, or four-piece?
A two-piece grinder is a good starting point. You have a top and a base and can get a good grind. However, a four-piece grinder like the Cali Crusher 4-piece gives you added features and a space to carry ground herb.
With a four-piece, you have a top, a grinder plate, a screen plate, and a base. The finer material (kief) is caught in the base for later retrieval after slipping through the screen. The screen and bottom plate act as a kief collector, and some higher-end models actually come with a tiny scoop you can use to scoop out the fine kief as needed. Four piece grinders are by far the more popular and common design. At the Bern Gallery, every 4-piece grinder comes with a tiny kief scoop.
Shop grinders by number of pieces:
What material is the grinder made from?
Herb grinders come in so many forms, even when it comes down to the material they are made out of. The low-end, less-expensive versions are usually made out of plastic, some of which are better than others. Something like the Santa Cruz Shredder is a good option if you don’t want to carry something expensive with you to smoke with a friend, for example. More expensive and durable versions tend to be crafted of metal or even wood, like the RYOT 2-piece that is crafted from walnut.
By far, metal grinders like the Barbwire 4-piece or the ERGO are the most popular. These grinders offer durability, are easy to clean, and perform consistently, but they can be heavier to carry. Wood is durable and capable of offering consistent grinding action, and wooden grinders always have this conversational appeal. However, wood can be harder to clean and can be a little bulkier. If you’re going for lightweight portability, plastic is the way to go.
Find the Herb Grinders and Accessories You Need
If you consider yourself a regular herb user, a good grinder is no doubt a must. We’ve got an extensive selection of herb grinders at Bern Gallery, from small and simple to premium and complex. Take a look at our full collection of grinders and other accessories today to make sure you have all you need for the best smoking experience.