How to Grow Tobacco

How to grow and process tobacco at home for personal use. This is a non-commercial hobby website.
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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 5:21 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 8:27 pm
Posts: 101
Location: Central Pa, USA
My bricks are 4 inch X 4 inch so I guess I work across it :D
Be patient and let the knife do the work with very little down pressure and don't use a sawing or back and forth motion just let the knife work down itself.

Let me know what you think


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 8:05 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 23, 2009 3:37 pm
Posts: 96
Location: n.mi
i bought this today for $1.99 Image they seem to workImagefor nowImage


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 4:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 3:13 am
Posts: 2056
Russ -

Looks like something that would work. How wide are the shreds? They look to be about 4 mm ? About 4 times too big? And does it cross-cut them too or is that just using it multiple times on the shreds?

Something like that with 1 mm shreds that doesn't cross cut would be handy!

Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 5:57 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 2:14 pm
Posts: 549
Location: West Tennessee
Bob,
I was wondering what went wrong when you tryed using a paper cutter?
I've been trying to find a used gillotine type locally with no luck so far.
Just wonder if I need to continue looking for one.

So far been using the grunt style cigar roll but cutting them with scissors instead of a knife.
Been working good and with a bit of care can get a fine cut but it sure wears out the fingers doing it this way.


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:29 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 3:13 am
Posts: 2056
Hi --

Taterious, I just couldn't get any consistancy in the shred width. Some came out 2 mm, some 5 mm, HUGE! With a razor I am able to shred some 1 mm and some 2 mm, and it's very rare to have a bad cut now that I have the hang of it. In fact, sometimes I "shave" the brick making a very tiny shreds.

I did stop using a metal ruler, because it was too dangerous to my fingers. I'm now using the bottom of a metal stapler, lol...but at least I can keep my fingers well back from the cutting blade!

Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:40 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2008 5:20 pm
Posts: 187
Location: NB Canada
Early on, I tried the guillotine paper cutter. The one I used would handle pressed slabs with up to a dozen leaves (about 1/8" thick). It barfed above that thickness.

I had some difficulty getting an even cut width, but that improved with practice. But I found it too time consuming - about 15 min for a half pound, compared to 2 to 3 with the shredder a buddy found in Quebec.

There are pictures and a bit of a description in the picture gallery, user galleries, page one, under my name. (Click on the picture rather than my name.)


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:24 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 2:14 pm
Posts: 549
Location: West Tennessee
Jack,
Cool rotary cutter was that a ''store bought'' item or did someone fabricate it.

Hey I'm a Jack also :D believe theres at least 3 jack's in here that I'm aware of


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 8:55 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:34 pm
Posts: 2738
Jack here. :D


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 Post subject: Note for taterious re Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 5:09 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2008 5:20 pm
Posts: 187
Location: NB Canada
That cutter was made some years ago by a small Quebec firm, no longer around.

Caliginous (I think it was) found another one like it listed some months back on the Halifax Kijiji. Sold for around $70, I think.

Jim (of Jim and Mickey fame) looked at making something like it - haven't heard how his project is coming along.

Jack


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 8:15 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2009 5:14 pm
Posts: 198
Location: North Carolina
You guys are messing with me -right?

LOL!

My first brick pressed was laughable! Turned out quite well for my first try with small leaves in the end.
However.....no one told me how hard to 'press' it! :shock:
So, I pressed it to death..took it out and re-folded it again and pressed it more. Then I attempted to shred it....with a knife and then with scissors. I got a fine thin cut with both methods with the scissors working best for me buy surely tiring my hands.

Then I tried everything I knew and had read to make tobacco I could smoke. It was too wet...then later I had to dry and I misted it.
I cut it with the knife and cut off a plug and put it in the blender and it made Fluff but not shredded as I needed. It looked like Bob's first pics in his processor or the blender. I did the blender for 1/3 of it. Looked like Bobs.
I spent the next 2 days trying to pick the hard tightly small shreds apart to no avail.

I have to tell you guys that you don't need to press the living hell out of your tobacco. I think that was my problem. No one told me how hard to press.
Finally, I put some back into the blender after misting and drying it out and then it worked better this time.
I layed it out and tried to dry it more even though it didn't seem wet but I knew it was too wet to put in my machine to roll one. Next day.....I rolled 10 cigs. Now remember this was from mostly ground lug leaves and maybe a few above that. My wife loved it! I was more critical because I knew I would say it was good even if it wasn't..mainly because this had been such a long journey.

I was quite surprised at the taste. Light but inviting. I was wanting more but this was really better than I had expected. I am a heavy smoker but this was from ground lugs as ya'll say.
It was so nice to finally get the smoke in my lungs and draw deep and later exhale.

This was from ground leaves..I can't wait to experience the upper leaves.

I thank you all for helping me to do this.

Thanks Guys!


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 9:16 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 3:45 pm
Posts: 1854
Location: Houston, TX
I used my Presto Salad Shooter for the first time today with the original slicer. My model was the first model introduced to the market and the motor kept getting bogged down. I removed as much stem as I could and was using unpressed leaf. it cut long narrow slices so I am happy about that but it does need more power. I shredded enough for a pack and then had to clean the leaf that had pscked around the slicer blades. It will serve its purpose since this is all for personal use.


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 3:13 am
Posts: 2056
Hi --

Reading y'all's posts shows you are having the same issues we had in processing tobacco, that is that we have to have the proper moisture content at various stages.

I have read people were wetting their leaves so much that when they pressed the brick, the juice ran out. Or maybe they were putting so much pressure on the brick it happened. That seems counter-productive to me, to lose any part of the leaf.

I found that too wet a brick sliced ok, but took forever to dry and the leaves stuck together. It took a while to get a feel for it and I don't think I can describe it, just takes experience.

After slicing, I found that putting it in the food process when it was still too wet caused it to stick to the blades. The pieces didn't shatter apart. Clearly, it has to be drier.

I found that putting it in the microwave at 10% power for 2 minutes at a time, and fluffing it up between and letting it cool, repeating until dry enough worked great except when I dried it too much, then the food processer shattered it into small flakes and powder. There's a fine line between too wet and too dry, but when properly done, I end up with the shreds separated and not too finely chopped.

This almost seems to be the definition of an art! Can't provide more than general direction, must be learned hands-on by experience!

Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 8:10 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 8:27 pm
Posts: 101
Location: Central Pa, USA
HMMMMMMM, I press the hell out my brick and the leaves are wet when I put them in the press, after I slice it with a knife or now I use a electric knife it is stuck together but you simply fluff it up with your hands to seperate.

Now don't get me wrong this does take some time, my bricks are about 1 inch thick 4x4 inches and using the electric knife takes a good 15 to 20 minutes to slice/shred it, as I slice the wife fluffs it to seperate.

We then put it on cookie sheets to dry and this takes about 8 to 10 hours to dry depending on the rh in the house at the time.

I get about 6 to 8 oz out of a brick, as I said it does take a bit of time but is do able untill I can find a shredder. To put this in perspective, I did a brick more or less every night for 2 weeks or so and ended up with 7-16 ounce bags of shredded tabbacco ready to smoke. This will last me and the wife 31/2 months, not bad for about 30 minutes of work a day, this includes pressing the brick and slicing the brick from the night before.


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 5:16 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 3:13 am
Posts: 2056
Hi --

I'm chronically behind in shredding bricks, lol. My bricks are about 1/2-1 inch thick after pressing and end up being about 3-4 oz dried at most. I find I can cut much thinner shreds with smaller bricks. I wish I were as industrious as you Doby! lol

Bob

ps. one thing that concentrates my mind wonderfully is the prospect of running out of tobacco ready to smoke.....bk


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 Post subject: Re: Shredding Tobacco By Hand
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 10:56 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 3:45 pm
Posts: 1854
Location: Houston, TX
bob_kemp wrote:
Hi --

Reading y'all's posts shows you are having the same issues we had in processing tobacco, that is that we have to have the proper moisture content at various stages...

I found that putting it in the microwave at 10% power for 2 minutes at a time, and fluffing it up between and letting it cool, repeating until dry enough worked great except when I dried it too much, then the food processer shattered it into small flakes and powder. There's a fine line between too wet and too dry, but when properly done, I end up with the shreds separated and not too finely chopped...Bob


I am nuking (microwave) mine now. Thanks for the advice. So far it is working well. I have noticed that if it gets a little too dry the spray on flavoring evens it out. I already have a few ounces sprayed and drying.

Thanks again.


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