Find the Right Type of Cannabis or Hemp Trimmer for your Cultivation Facility
Cannabis trimmers come in many shapes and sizes. Here’s what you need to know before making an investment.
There are a wide variety of cannabis and hemp trimmers available on the market today for the cannabis grower interested in taking their trimming process beyond hand trimming. All of these automated trimming machines can streamline your operation, however, the design and functionality differences between cannabis and hemp trimmers can be confusing. Below we’ve listed the most common types of trimmers. We’ve included descriptions and key points. They are organized from smallest processing volume to largest. Find the best bud trimmer for your process.
Bowl-style cannabis trimmer
Bowl-style trimmers look exactly like you’d expect; they are small units shaped like a salad bowl spinner and operate with a similar principle. They are typically the lowest cost option available for cannabis and hemp trimming.
Hemp or cannabis plant flower is loaded into the “bowl” component of the machine. It sweeps the flower across a blade system that rotates underneath the bottom of the bowl.
This type of cannabis and hemp trimmer is hand-powered with a crank on the top, although some motorized models are available.
Example: DL Wholesale Bowl Trimmer
- Lowest-cost trimming option available, prices ranging from $100 to $600
- Ideal for home-growers
- Suitable for dry trimming only
Wand-style cannabis trimmer
Wand-style cannabis and hemp trimmers are small units meant to be operated with one hand while you hold the cannabis flower in the other hand. Typically the “wand” component contains blades that vibrate back and forth. More expensive models contain a suction system to collect some of the trim, while the cheapest models are simply powered shears or scissors.
Wand-style trimmers can be used as a wet or dry trimmer for cannabis or hemp.
Example: EZTRIM Wander Trimmer
- Low-cost option, prices ranging from $250-2500
- Some models have exposed blades which means they are not suitable for GMP-cerified facilities
- They are designed for hobbyists or micro-grows, not made for large volume cultivators
Batch-style cannabis trimmer
Many types of trimmers could technically be considered “batch-style” trimmers. But, in the jargon of commercial cannabis and hemp harvesting, batch-style trimmer refers to the larger size stand-up trimmers. Examples of these would be Green Broz and EZ Trim Satellite. They work in a similar manner as the bowl-style trimmer, but they are much larger and meant for higher processing volume of cannabis bud.
Cannabis or hemp flower is loaded into the top, and a large series of brushes pushes the flower over rotating circular blades that sit at the bottom of the unit. The trimmer will be powered on and then run until the desired trim level is reached. The operator will then stop the machine and dump trimmed buds out of a chute in the bottom into a tote or bin.
Example: Trimpro Rotor XL
- Intended for mid-size cultivators
- Can be used for dry bud trim only
- Moderately easy to clean
- Prices range from $10,000 – $18,000
Barrel-style cannabis trimmer
Barrel-style trimmers are technically batch-style trimmers, but the design is different enough to carve them off into a category of their own. They look similar to a cement mixer, and function in a similar fashion. Cannabis or hemp flower is loaded into the open end, then they are tilted upwards and powered on. The flower is rolled around inside across the barrel walls, which consist of two layers of slotted steel that rotate in opposite directions, creating the tearing action. When the desired trim level is reached, the unit is powered off and tilted forward to dump the cannabis or hemp flower into a tote.
Example: Triminator Dry Trimming Machine
- Intended for mid-size cultivators
- Barrel-style trimmers can only be used for dry trimming
- Their simple mechanics make them easy to clean
- Prices range from $4,000 – $10,000
Throughput / continuous-feed cannabis trimmer
Throughput-style trimmers are fed continuously and emptied continuously. This type of cannabis and hemp trimmer is what is used by most large-scale cannabis and hemp cultivators. Continuous-feed trimmers have a barrel or “tumbler” on top of the machine.
Cannabis or hemp flower is fed into the tumbler by a conveyor or by hand using a chute. The flower rotates around the inside of the tumbler, passing over a blade system immediately under the tumbler wall. The tumbler has slats or holes punched into it that allow the flower to access the blade system.
A separate suction unit attached to the trimmer body with a hose pulls the flower through the holes in the tumbler as it passes the blades, assisting the trimming process. The tumbler is placed on an angle so that gravity pulls the flower through the tumbler and out the other end onto a second conveyor or into a tote.
Example: Centurion Pro Original
- Intended for large-scale cultivators
- Can be difficult to clean depending on model and design
- Suitable for both dry and wet trimming
- Prices range from $5,000 – $12,000 (for common models)
The Mobius Trimmer M108S is a throughput-style trimmer, but because its design and functionality are so different from others in this category, it warrants its own section. Important differences include:
- AirThread Tension Tumbler: Made from steel cable rather than perforated sheet metal, which allows the flower greater access to the blade system.
- Integrated Separation System: The design is hose-less and contained within a single unit (compared to all others in the throughput-style category which require a separate suction unit).
- Tool-Free Disassembly: Disassembly and assembly is entirely tool-less, making cleaning fast and simple.