What’s your trimming process like? Do you use machines or do you trim by hand?
Hand trimming always gives the best results. Sure machines can do it faster - but there is nothing like the trichome quality on a well hand-crafted nugget that is cured to perfection.
Bumping this topic for the newer folks. Tell us about your trimming process.
Hand trim is not the be-all answer for all growers and all operations. The question is not what is the best result… it’s what’s the best result based on what you intend to do with it or the market you’re selling into. There simply isn’t any quantifiable reason why ALL cannabis needs to be top shelf hand trim quality. We’re talking hundreds of thousands of lbs over every possible way to use the plant, pre-rolls, extracts, cup-winners, etc.
Plus… there is zero proof that hand trim nets any more trichome preservation or increased THC vs. automation/machine trim. Anecdotal yes, and infrequent data for sure… but I can show you the same for machine trim that consistently nets higher THC vs. hand trim.
Most large growers know this… but just stating the obvious…
I’m a small grower in Alaska that’s just started up. I’m going to be using the “Trim Bag”. It’s a relatively low cost solution that combines the speed of machine trimming and produces what looks to be a quality trim. It costs $359 and can trim about 2 lbs of product in 10 minutes. In most cases spot checking each bud afterward for small stems and brief touch ups are required but overall it cuts down 90% of the time and labor and leaves you with hand trim quality +/- .
Check it out.
Here’s a link to a few video demos
As an added bonus it’s very portable weighing under 5 lbs, and doesn’t require electricity or vacuums. It also doesn’t eat pizza, drink beer, talk nonsense or want samples!
There’s also an additional device called the swagger bagger that helps sift out the last of the shake and allows for a quick clean bagging of product.
Here’s a nice drying net rack that I think is a nice product too.
Great discussion so far. I should start by saying that, even though we’re an automated harvest company with a killer trimmer, machine-trimmed flower is not the end-all and there will always be room for smaller, boutique operations who employ a hand-trimmed process. Just like there is a large boom in the craft beer industry.
We at GreenBroz have gathered feedback from a number of sources on this. You can see our independent, third party test results here (https://www.greenbroz.com/test-results/). Steep Hill Labs is highly respected in the cannabis testing game.
But nothing is as good as hearing it from the growers themselves. ‘The Clinic’, who has won more awards than I can list, was 100% hand-trim ever since inception. They tried countless machines and refused to leave hand-trimming until they found a machine that would produce the same quality as hand-trim. Finally, after nearly a year of hard work, our Nothern Colorado Sales Manager got in the door for a demo in front of all ‘The Clinic’s’ brass.
“I can honestly remember my jaw being on the floor.” - Clinic CEO Ryan Cook.
Check out the video, and other cultivator feedback, here (http://bit.ly/2xlTEjI). Don’t take our word for it. Don’t take any trimmer company’s word for it. Listen to the award winning growers themselves.
When it comes to determining when to trim, can anyone share there best practices. I.E. do you base it on %75 decrease in wait from water loss or is a certain time period used. In addition what is the optimum environment (temp, humidity, etc.) for a drying room?
I just dryed and cured 144 pounds (wet weight) of Cannabis and kept the room at 65 degrees and 55% RH for the first week and then 60%RH for the second week. Weeks one and two I dried the plants whole upside down, then at the start of week three I bucked the buds from the branches/stems.and trimmed them. Next I gave the buds an additional 1 week on mesh hanging baskets for a final dry before putting them into 5 gallon buckets with 67 gram packets of Integra Boost (65%) to cure.
The buds are ready to trim after about 10 days hanging upside down. When the outer leaves start to get crunchy they’re ready to trim. Some people do a quick wet trim before hang drying, and I’d recommend this. Definitely get all the fan leaves off, and I’d do a quick trim of the sugar leaves too. It’s a lot easier to do it wet then when they’ve dried up later on. Its minimizes the work of the final touch up trimming…
I get about 1/7 of the starting wet weight for the final yield. Of the final yield about 1/5 of the final weight is trim.
Glad to hear your first harvest went well Gary! Do you have any pictures of the final product to show off?
I have some not so good phone pics. I just delivered 9 samples to Canntest the testing facility in Anchorage and they do closeup and microscopic pics of each bud along with the test results. I’ll post them tomorrow when I receive them.
There were several strains with very nice bag appeal. The Buckeye Purple seems to be popular as it’s a deep purple throughout. My favorite was the Sunset Sherbert/Banana Buckeye cross. It had a very nice range of colors throughout and just looked like bud porn to me. The best smelling was Pink 2.0 with its Cotton Candy/Skittles scent that just fills a room.
I hope to invest in a GreenBroz trimmer by next harvest. I did all 28 pounds solo. The trim bag worked to a degree but it wasn’t a one step solution and required a fair amount of hand trimming afterward.
How to you trim? Do you leave a little leaf like a fringe on a skirt? Hand-trimming is superior for so many reasons. Machines knock off so many precious trichomes and oftentimes crush the plant structure losing that sparkly aesthetic value that we all look for. It’s been said that we “eat with our eyes” but I’d say the same is true for smoking and vaping cannabis
We began with a handful of guys who used to grow and harvest medical marijuana by-hand and thought to themselves, “there has got to be a better way" and have believed in the use of trimming machines ever since. A lot of people are put-off by poor quality machines or those with bad designs, which is why we work so hard to ensure that our machines are the most design friendly and of the highest quality on the market.
Research shows that it takes an experienced trimmer 5.5 hours to trim 1lbs of cured product by hand but our Mini trimmer (for example) is able to process approx. 30lbs wet and 8lbs dry, per hour. Not only that, but they protect your operation by providing security (less hands in the pot, so to speak) and save you money in the long run. We also pride ourselves on designing machines that produce a consistent product without sacrificing quality. Even the greated hand-trimmers can get tired and a little sloppy towards the end of the day.
We understand that everyone has a method that works best for them, but you can’t knock machine trimming until you try a quality system
Nothing beats hand trimming, but the price is very high.
I recently tried the Bladeless Trimmer for some outdoor product and it trimmed it up very nicely. Only thing left behind were a few main stems at the bottom of the nug. No leaves left just bud.
It would process 10 lbs an hour or so, and clean up was 30 minutes per pound just snipping off a stems or crows feet here and there. THOROUGHLY IMPRESSED, because there was no visible damage to the bud or trichomes after using that machine. I might be switching over to this full-time…
From my position in the market, I have seen that the GreenBroz seem to be preferred by people looking for the best of both speed and quality. It’s not the fastest, but I have reports of it being the best for quality. My bulk commercial customers typically buy T2’s and the more ‘connoisseur’ type flower producers use GreenBroz or go by hand. It really depends on what your end goal is. I, personally, would go with a dialed in machine trim followed by a hand touch-up.
I have found that most people that have had bad luck with trimmers don’t put the time into their trimmer to figure out optimal feed rate, moisture lever, feed angle, etc. They get the machine out of the box, run whatever strain through, get mediocre results and give up on it.
I tell people it will take about 40 hours of trimming to get the whole process dialed. You just need to realize that there are many variables that effect trim quality and that some strains are just not good for trimming machines.
Well, it does take at least 10,000 hours to master anything, so 40 hours isn’t too much to ask.
We’d love to become part of your curing process!
Let us know if our humidity regulator packs, can be of service, and we’ll be sure to send you out a sample pack.
Thanks for your consideration
Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your curing Process!
- Integra Team
Thanks! Its truly my pleasure. Integra boost is a very good product. I use both 55 and 62’s in various packet sizes. They go in every curing bucket, every shipping bag, and any container that has any product in it. Its real peace of mind knowing its taken care of at all times.I’ve had several compliments on my perfectly cured buds. I owe alot to Integra for that.
We are developing machine vision robots for bud trimming and processing for analysis, extraction, genomics and tissue culturing.
Since siccors/blades need to be continually cleaned and introduce pathogens into the product, we are using lasers to trim sugar leaves and soft robots fingers to pull fan leaves.