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How to Choose the Best Dry Herb Grinder? A Comprehensive Guide

A grinder for dry herbs is essential for proper, efficient vaporization – every fan of this inhalation method knows this. That’s why VapoManiak (the most popular vaporizer reviewer in the world*) and I, Lucas, CEO, and founder of VapeFully, met on one weekend in April 2023 to test over 200 different grinders. We tested everything: from plastic ones for a dollar to the most expensive grinders on the market. Thus, this article was born – almost like a scientific dissertation! Here we described everything you need to know about dry herb grinders.

*Well, maybe not the most popular in the world, but definitely the most detailed expert in vaporization 😉

What will you learn from this article?

👉 Which grinder to choose for your needs: 2-, 3-, or 4-part?

👉 What to consider when choosing a grinder?

👉 Is an electric grinder worth it?

Table of contents: 

  1. Which dry herb grinder to choose? Everything you need to know!
  2. Types of herb grinders – which one to choose?
  3. Why is a good grinder for herbs so important?
  4. FAQ – Find the Answer to your Question

Which dry herb grinder to choose? Everything you need to know!

For proper vaporization, dry herbs must be ground in a grinder – you probably know this already. A grinder for cannabis herbs, often also called a grinder or kief-catcher, is used to grind whole flower herbs into a fine consistency, allowing for their vaporization.

Using a grinder is not only much faster and more convenient than crushing herbs with your fingers. Grinding herbs allows for a much more effective extraction of active substances, which translates into better inhalation efficiency by extracting valuable active substances.

However, there are hundreds of grinder models available on the market – how to choose a quality product that will also be compatible with your vaporizer?

Grinders for dry herbs – quality matters

When visiting a grinder shop – stationary or online – we often have the opportunity to choose from several hundred models of grinders – plastic, wooden, aluminum, 2-, 3-, or 4-part, in various shapes and made according to different quality standards.

Let’s start with the material the herb grinder is made of – it’s one of the most important factors determining the quality, durability, and safety of using a particular grinder.

🧨 Plastic (acrylic) grinders

Plastic grinders are not recommended – they are relatively less durable, which in the case of intensive use can result in the contamination of the dry herb with plastic particles. This, in turn, can pose a health hazard to the user.

The only plastic grinders our experts recommend, which are also well suited for vaporization, are the Volcano grinder and the Swiss Grinder Fresh. Both grinders are discussed below.

Avoid cheap, acrylic grinders. They are made of poor-quality materials, which leads to quick damage of that material. These microscopic, almost invisible plastic particles may contaminate the herb, which you do not want to vaporize. With a very limited budget, I would choose Swiss Grinder Fresh.

VapoManiak – professional vaporizer reviewer

🪵 Wooden Grinders – is it a good idea?

Wooden grinders, although in some cases can grind the dry herb quite well, are also not recommended because they are very difficult to clean – wood cannot be cleaned with isopropyl alcohol, which significantly hinders the removal of sticky, resinous residues and in practice greatly limits the lifespan of a wooden grinder.

Currently, VapeFully does not offer wooden grinders, due to the lack of good quality products on the market. We regularly test new products, and those that deserve attention (and pass our tests) are added to our offering. In the meantime, we encourage you to check out other dry herb grinders 😉

🔩 Aluminum grinders – the most popular choice

Aluminum dry herb grinders are the most popular and internally diverse group. They come in versions made of different types of aluminum – from the cheapest and least durable to the highest durability alloys used in the construction of spacecraft hulls.

Aluminum grinders can have different shapes of teeth, most often they are cut using CNC technology. The quality of workmanship can significantly vary in the case of the cheapest models.

For this reason, if we plan to use an inexpensive aluminum grinder, it is recommended to thoroughly clean it beforehand and grind pieces of paper in it – after cleaning it again with isopropyl alcohol (we recommend VapeCleaner), we will be sure that we have removed any potentially present aluminum filings left inside the grinder after the production process.

However, even the application of the above procedure does not guarantee that during normal use, a low-quality grinder made of aluminum will not start to contaminate the ground herb with metal filings over time.

Among aluminum grinders, some premium models stand out for the highest available quality of workmanship and – usually – some special features – for example, the Kannastör GR8TR grinder has 2 types of grinder bottoms (which allows for a finer or coarser consistency), while the Santa Cruz Shredder, thanks to its specially designed teeth shape, allows for a fluffier consistency of the ground herb.

Stainless steel vs. aluminum Grinders

Potentially, it might seem that steel grinders would be a much better solution than their aluminum “cousins” – but in reality, it’s a bit different. For many people, a metal grinder is the best choice. Such a grinder for cannabis can be almost indestructible if you make a good choice.

  • First, steel grinders are much, much heavier than models made of aluminum.
  • Second, their production cost – and thus the final price for the consumer – is significantly higher than that of aluminum grinders.
  • Thirdly, grinders made of good quality aluminum are just as durable as steel ones, which, in the context of the first two points, questions the sense of purchasing a stainless steel grinder.

Types of herb grinders – which one to choose? 🤷‍♀️

Not sure which grinder to choose? Don’t worry – you’re about to find out everything!

Just as the material from which a grinder is made is hugely important for its quality, durability, and safety, so is the type.

2-part grinder – the simplest construction

Santa Crus Shredder

The simplest grinders consist of 2 elements, each of these elements has teeth for grinding the herb.

Therefore, these types of grinders have only one chamber, where the herb is ground and remains trapped after grinding. The advantage of 2-part grinders is that the herb does not fall into a lower chamber (because there is none), which means the longer we turn the grinder, the finer the consistency of the herb we will achieve – this is an advantage for owners of conduction vaporizers, which we will return to.

The disadvantage of 2-part grinders, however, is that after grinding, the herb must be poured out onto another surface (e.g., a RAW herb tray), and there is no possibility to fill the vaporizer directly from the grinder nor to store a larger amount of ground herb in the grinder.

Among 2-part grinders, we find both the simplest plastic designs and premium models, for example, the 2-part Santa Cruz Shredder grinder. The cheapest, well-grinding, and safe-to-use version of a 2-part grinder is the previously mentioned Volcano grinder.

How does a 3-part grinder work?

What’s the difference between 2-part and 3-part grinders? The difference lies in an additional chamber for the ground herb – it is located below the chamber where grinding takes place, and its bottom is equipped with holes.

As the grinder is turned, the herb is ground and its particles fall into the chamber below – this allows storing the ground herb there or filling the vaporizer directly from the grinder.

3-part grinders are relatively unpopular, however, some users value them because, unlike 4-part grinders (which we will move on to shortly), they do not separate the plant pollen, also known as kief, from the ground herb – both remain in the lowest chamber of the grinder, both can therefore be used immediately.

The most common choice, the 4-part grinder

Santa Cruz Shredder – Młynek 4-częściowy

4-part grinders are the most popular choice among vaporization fans. A 4-part grinder has an additional chamber at the bottom, which is a fine mesh – it is used to separate plant pollen from the herb during grinding.

The herb falls from the grinding chamber onto the mesh and stays there. However, the separated pollen passes through the mesh and stays in the lowest chamber of the grinder. After some time, you can use the collected pollen, which vaporization enthusiasts appreciate for its wonderful taste.

The best model from this group is, in our opinion, the 4-part Santa Cruz Shredder. There are also many intermediate options, like the 4-part Kannastör grinder or the Thorinder grinder – they also offer premium quality but are not as expensive as the Santa Cruz Shredder.

A 4-part grinder (just like a 3-part one) also allows for achieving a fine consistency of the ground herb, but it requires holding the grinder “upside down” during grinding – only then will the ground herb not fall into the chamber below, instead, it will be ground into a finer consistency.

Multi-element grinders – what’s their deal?

The market also offers grinders consisting of more than 4 elements – these include the already mentioned Kannastör GR8TR or Mind Grinder. In reality – as far as their operation is concerned – they are most often grinders working like 4-part models (2 grinding parts, chamber for ground herb, chamber for pollen) but are equipped with additional elements, such as a herb storage container, interchangeable grinding plates, etc. If you are looking for a premium model offering not only excellent grinding quality but also maximum functionality, then a multi-element grinder will be the best choice.

💡 Electric herb grinders – will the new replace the old?

For some time now, electric grinders for dry herbs have also been available. If you still don’t know which herb grinder to choose, this might be an interesting option. Initially, electric grinders were intended for pepper or coffee. So what’s the problem with these types of grinders?

Electric grinders spin the blades very quickly, causing the plant pollen to separate too intensely from the ground herb and settle on the walls of the grinder. As a result, the ground herb is less rich in plant pollen and the active substances it contains.

Lucas Cysewski – CEO and founder of VapeFully

We definitely do not recommend these types of grinders, so they are not available in the VapeFully offer.

what is the best grinder

Why is a good grinder for herbs so important? 🤓

Have you recently started your adventure with vaporization and are wondering how you can ensure the efficiency of the inhalations you conduct? Not sure what additional accessories you would need to avoid making any mistakes? Or perhaps your doctor has prescribed you medical cannabis, so you need a crusher for medical marijuana?

One of the most important things is a good quality herb grinder. It allows you to extract the best from your herbs – every experienced vaporization fan knows this. Find out why a good grinder for herbs is so important!

⛔️ Any first grinder you find is always a bad choice…

Do you think a grinder is not too important because it does not play such a crucial role?

Imagine that the barista in your favorite coffee shop also says that they use the first grinder they find for coffee – it would be hard to accept, right?

After all, it’s the grinder’s job to ensure that perfectly ground, silky beans reach the coffee machine, which later allows for the creation of aromatic, essential coffee… The same applies to a herb grinder. Whether you need a crusher for marijuana or maybe a grinder for herbs, it’s worth opting for high quality.

If you choose a low-quality grinder, you can be sure that vaporization will not only be unsatisfactory for you but may also not proceed correctly. It does not matter which herbs you choose. A low-quality grinder will not work well for natural herbs, such as lemon balm or lavender, and during the vaporization of CBD herbs. The interest in cannabidiol is growing, among other reasons, because research confirms its positive impact on the body. No wonder that more and more people are looking for a good herb grinder.

And then it may turn out that you will struggle with grinding the herb, and still, it won’t work out. What’s worse – often grinders bought in random places (e.g., at stands in shopping malls) are made of low-quality materials.

Which herb grinder to choose? Look for it at VapeFully!

In the VapeFully store, you will find the perfect herb grinder for yourself. You can be sure that the grinders for herbs available in our offer will always work well – no matter which herb you choose. Remember – the grinders for herbs we offer come exclusively from trusted manufacturers. They are characterized by high durability, and at the same time, they are simple to use. The rich assortment of the store means that you will find the best herb grinder for yourself in our offer.

FAQ – Find the Answer to your Question:

>> How to choose a grinder? 

Choosing a grinder for dry herbs is not a simple task, as even this article might suggest. There are a lot of issues to consider when selecting a grinder. You need to choose the material, decide on the number of parts the grinder should consist of, and also decide how much money you are willing to spend on it. If you’re not sure how to choose a grinder that will meet your expectations, you can always contact our VapeFully advisors who will gladly help you out!

>> Where to buy a grinder for dry herbs?

Want to buy a good quality grinder for dry herbs but don’t know where to find such a device? VapeFully offers many herb grinders. They are made of various materials, but what unites them is that they are safe and effective. You can choose from many grinders, varied in terms of price. So, if you’re wondering where you can buy a grinder, check out VapeFully’s offer as soon as possible!

>> Do you need to grind herbs for vaporization? 

Are you just starting your inhalation adventure and don’t know if grinding the herbs is necessary? Yes – the herb you buy needs to be ground before you start inhaling. This will give it the right consistency, and vaporization will be effective. For conduction vaporizers, the herb must be ground very finely. However, if you’re using a convection vaporizer, don’t grind the herb too finely – otherwise, the herb particles may be carried away by the air stream.

>> How much does a herb grinder cost? 

The prices of herb grinders vary. The cheapest grinders on the market can cost from a few to several euros, although there are grinders whose price reaches several hundred euros. Certainly, however, it is not worth being frugal when buying a grinder – not only for safety reasons. A good grinder positively affects the quality of inhalation and the convenience of grinding the herb. It’s worth comparing different models available and finding an offer where the quality-to-price ratio is satisfying.

>> Which grinder do you recommend for beginners? 

A herb grinder is a very simple device that, is necessary for efficient, correctly conducted vaporization. Unfortunately, most people starting their vaporization journey have no idea about this.
As a result, they buy a vaporizer, and then crush the herb with their fingers – which is certainly not the best solution.

It is also simply convenient since the entire ground herb will remain in a special container from which you can transfer it directly to the vaporizer’s heating chamber.
A good grinder is also a huge comfort, as well as a way to increase the efficiency of vaporization and improve the aromatic qualities of the vapor.

>> Which grinder for cannabis herb should you choose?

When it comes to grinders for cannabis herbs or any other herbs, the choice is really vast.
In stores, you will find herb grinders in various sizes, made of many different materials, 2-, 3-, and 4-chambered. How to navigate all this and choose the best grinder for herbs? You need to pay attention to a few elements.

>> 2-, 3-, and 4-part grinders – which to choose?

2-part grinders have a very simple structure. They consist of two parts, and during grinding, all the herbs remain in the same chamber. The way to use such a grinder is very simple.
The longer it will be turned, the finer the ground herb will be. However, transferring the herb to the vaporizer’s heating chamber may pose a problem, so it’s worth getting a special tray or a folded piece of paper.

3-chamber grinders are a bit more advanced. They have an additional chamber for ground herbs.
Such grinders have a large fan base because the herb can be transferred directly to the vaporizer.

As for 4-part grinders, they have an additional, fourth container for kief.
As is known, pollen is the richest in active ingredients, and its separation can be an interesting idea. Thanks to a 4-part grinder, over time you’ll collect a significant amount of such pollen.
To start with, however, it’s worth choosing a tried-and-tested, but not too expensive, grinder for cannabis herb.

>> Does the material from which the grinder is made matter?

This is a key issue. First and foremost, never opt for cheap, plastic grinders. They are made of poor-quality materials, resulting in microscopic, almost invisible plastic particles that may contaminate the herb.

After all, your goal is not to inhale plastic!
The same applies to wooden grinders, which are additionally very difficult to clean since isopropyl alcohol cannot be used for cleaning vaporizers.
If you value eco-friendly solutions, choose a grinder with a wooden casing, but let its chamber be made of aluminum or stainless steel.
This is the safest solution. Grinders made of aluminum are very light, but those made of steel are exceptionally durable – the choice is yours.

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