Our community, by its very definition, hosts a lot of different types of people. You’ve got the kind that don’t mind a sticky handshake, frugally pulling apart buds with their fingernails while proudly proclaiming that they’ve gotten this far without a grinder just fine. Then, there are those that have graduated to using tools, but still don’t see the point of investing in an herb grinder, opting instead to painstakingly butcher their buds with a common pair of scissors. More power to these guys, but for the rest of us, the herb grinder has been a loyal friend, transforming our plant material into a desirable, manageable consistency while keeping our hands clean. While you can still find a classic grinder on the market today, designs have dramatically evolved over the years to meet our collective needs. In this week’s blog, we take a moment to appreciate the evolution of the herb grinder.
Herb Grinder Origins
By its name alone, the grinder needs to only fulfill one promise: the effective and efficient grinding of your plant material. The most basic grinders tackle that challenge with gusto, but this is pretty much all they do. Not that simplicity is necessarily a bad thing. The 2-piece grinder created the foundation that pretty much all subsequent grinder models were built upon: a chamber lined with rows of diamond teeth that would reduce whole buds to ground product with a few simple twists. A second chamber was added to easily collect the ground up plant material without the interference of the rows of teeth. Finally, some grinders opted to include a kief catcher; a sort of pollen trap that would collect the terpene-rich golden dust known as kief. Some aficionados prefer their grinders without a kief catcher, finding it more beneficial to keep the potent kief mixed in with the original material. Either way, a good grinder makes sure nothing goes to waste.
How Demand Shapes Grinder Evolution
To this day, the 3-chamber grinder, also referred to as the 4-piece grinder, is the gold standard for what we’ve come to expect from an herb grinder. But this is not the grinder’s ultimate form. When it comes to grinder evolution, there’s perhaps no better source than the minds at Canada’s Wolf Grinders. Wolf have made it their business to re-think the herb grinder, reshaping what we considered possible to further hone it to our convenience. Judging by their creations, people really want their herb grinders to be more than just their smoke circle buddies. An overwhelming amount of the advancements in grinder designs keep a tighter focus on portability and enjoying the benefits of a reliable grinder while on-the-go. Many grinders already featured magnetic closures, vital to keeping plant material right where you want it, even while commuting with a grinder in your pocket. But with their Combo Crusher, Wolf took this concept a step further by providing an all-in-one compact smoking unit that could be enjoyed virtually anywhere.
The Combo Crusher
As if a clown car proclaimed, “Let’s see you fit so much fun into something so small” and Wolf responded “Hold my beer”, the Combo Crusher uses ingenuity and space efficiency to cram an entire sesh worth’s of gear into one portable unit. Within the confines of the Combo Crusher, you have a fully functional 3-chamber herb grinder, a foldout dry herb hand pipe with its own glass bowl piece, a holster for your mini Bic lighter and a screw-on pick piece to keep things clean while on the go. It’s the ultimate evolution of the herb grinder. All the demands of convenience and portability are satisfied.
So is the Combo Crusher the herb grinder’s final form? We’d imagine not, although improving upon the design would be no easy feat. But consumer tastes change and as those changing needs are voiced, you can expect the herb grinder to further evolve. It’s interesting to imagine what an herb grinder 20 years from now might offer. In the meantime, we can content ourselves with the modern conveniences of the Combo Crusher.