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Before the advent of aluminum herb grinders, smokers were forced to either break up herb with their fingers (very messy) or just jam the entire bud into the bowl (very wasteful). Thankfully those days are over. Having the right tools will take your smoking sessions to new heights. You’ll be able to conserve herb while maximizing the product you do end up using. This device will make everything better: your smoke will be smoother, your herb will be rolled easier, and its economical. Bottom line, if you’re not using a grinder, then you’re not getting the best experience or value of the herb you’re trying to enjoy.
Looking for a new herb grinder can be daunting, there are a multitude of materials and designs to choose from when it comes to your final decision. Other than aluminum, you might have stumbled upon acrylic and wood options, these are best avoided for those looking to upgrade their device. While acrylic and wood units offer more colorful and eye-catching designs than aluminum ones, their performance is not on the same level, and acrylic devices have a small health risk if they are over-used and not replaced every so often. An aluminum herb grinder is best for those smokers looking for a top quality unit that will last. While aluminum devices might be a little more expensive than other options, they offer more durability and will last longer.
There is a reason aluminum grinders are so popular. The teeth on aluminum pieces tend to stay sharper than their acrylic and wood counterparts, and are way less likely to chip off into your herb. Acrylic devices have a minor health risk associated with them, as they’re not as durable as aluminum. Their teeth sometimes chip, leading you to finding an unpleasant plastic surprise in your herb that hopefully won’t be combusted while you enjoy your session. An aluminum device will be much easier to clean as well, as they can be soaked and sterilized so you can avoid any staining or unwanted odors.
Despite being heavier than their plastic and wood counterparts, aluminum herb grinders are still very portable. Their construction is durable enough to deal with any drops it might go through. And if you need a discreet travel situation, aluminum devices conceal odor better than a wood or acrylic alternative thanks to the airtight seal formed when it is closed.
Part of what makes aluminum grinders the most popular type available is the myriad of options. Aluminum devices come in a variety of types including two-piece, three-piece, and four-piece. Let’s breakdown what you can expect while you shop around.
For those who don’t smoke very often or just want a simple no fuss option, the two piece grinder is right up your alley. Two piece (or “1 chamber”) devices don’t do anything to save the crystals that get separated from the herb during the grinding process. They simply grind your herb in the same place you insert it, so the herb is grinded and stored in the same chamber. The 2-piece devices is an easy, affordable way to grind your herb. Their minimal design makes 2 piece units the simplest type of grinders to use and clean.
Three piece grinders have the dual function of catching your ground herb in a chamber without teeth for easier retrieval. There is a chamber to put your herb into and grind up, and a chamber that holds the once whole, now shredded herb. This form does not have a crystal catch, so if you’re primarily a vaporizer user not concerned with saving your pollen and more focused on getting a fluffy herb shred then a three piece unit is for you. A little heftier than a two piece option, the three piece is a great storage unit since you can just leave your grinded up herb inside, pack it up, and go.
The next step up is a 4 piece option (or “three chamber”), which is probably the most commonly used multi-chamber herb grinder. They’re usually a similar size to devices that utilize fewer pieces, so you don’t have to sacrifice space for more functionality. Once the herb is ground up, the resulting grain will drift into a central chamber where a very fine screen designed to capture crystals will sift the pollen from the ground flower.
The three-piece grinder design is as follows: One chamber for your pre-ground bud, a chamber that houses the bud after its ground, and a final chamber for the separated crystals. The byproduct of grinding your herb can have up to 60% THC, which makes a four piece unit the most popular type of aluminum grinder. One lifehack for devices featuring a screen is to place a small coin, like a dime or nickel, on the screen. The agitation of the coin against the screen helps push trichomes down to the chamber below, where they are trapped for easy collection.
Credit card grinders are simple, hassle free devices with extreme portability. Every unit will come with a sleeve to slide it into, so as not to get herb remnants all over whatever you toss your card in. The look and size of these devices is just like, you guessed it, a credit card. This type of herb grinder is definitely the most portable, as it can slide into your wallet, purse, or pocket without taking up very much space while also being lightweight. These ultra-small devices work similar to a cheese grater. Simply take your herb and grate it against the aluminum card until a fluffy and fine amount is shredded off. If you become inclined to give your grinder a cleaning, this credit card style option will give you the least trouble when you decide to refresh its look.