The Inspector Gadget of Cannabis: NugTools
How NugTools Did It: Nuggy Unplugged
If you’re aware of the Nuggy, then there’s a chance you’ve heard it described as the Swiss Army Knife for cannabis users.
Or the smoker’s multi-tool. Maybe you have your own name for it. You use it in your own way or unconventionally. Perhaps your Nuggy has a personality. Whatever the case, we can all admit the Nuggy’s an extremely versatile instrument with no end to the ways in which people can utilize it. The force behind this incredible tool is founder and CEO Bobby “Rob” Green, alongside his incredible team. They created The Nuggy, a 10-in-1 cannabis tool for your every smoking, vaping or dabbing need, back in 2015 when Green was using a generic Czech Pipe Tool. Because the tool was designed from a tobacco standpoint and was limited to just 3 basic tools, it occurred to him that he could use the same concept to design a tool specifically for use with cannabis and its any and every method of consumption. After a period of time thinking it over, Green started working on it, at first scribbling designs on napkins, before hiring freelancers from all over the world to help with the CAD and engineering work for the initial prototype. Viride spoke to Rob about promoting the Nuggy, the company’s relationship with the arts, how 3D printing your prototype can be cost-effective in the long run, and the future of the Nuggy.
The first generation of Nuggys come equipped with an LED light and flashlight switch, knife, mini spoon, tamper, scissors, roach clip, scraper, pick, bottle opener, and flathead screwdriver. The casing is forest green and the silvery N standing for Nuggy is positioned dead-center on both sides. It’s light, weighing a mere .5 pounds, and can fit inside just about any sizepocket. The stainless steel tools undergo an annealing process to keep them durable and the case is sealed using an ultrasonic welding procedure. To say that the Nuggy is built to last would be an understatement. I’ve dropped it a lot, as one can expect, and still a dent has yet to surface.
In an effort to promote their product, NugTools asked musicians if they’d be interested in being featured in a series of videos called Moments. “[They] aspired to create short, visually compelling videos enhanced by a musical backdrop. The goal was not to create another how-to or unboxing video, but to highlight music and art and bring those moments, the reasons we created the Nuggy in the first place, to life.” Each video showcases a moment with one of the 8 stainless steel tools and a silent, albeit natural, demonstration of its use. In the roach clip video, for example, two guys hanging out on the beach are nonchalantly passing the roach clip back and forth as Casey Burge’s song Comin’ Fulfilled is streaming along in the background, setting the vibe more succinctly than if it had been put into words. Green repeatedly emphasized how music has “always been really close to the cannabis industry as a whole [and that working with cannabis friendly musicians]” made for the perfect collaboration. NugTools could promote the musician(s) while promoting their product at the same time. When I asked Green to expand on this relationship between music and cannabis, he said, “The first thing that comes to mind is music and cannabis both allow you to live in the moment. If you’re listening to a good song, you can get lost in it. You’re not thinking about the past or the future. You’re really living in the moment and you're enjoying yourself. And I think cannabis does the same thing, allows you to let go of the troubles that are going on or just the positive stresses, even, in your life and just relax and live in the moment.” The company has also collaborated with Slightly Stoopid and TKid, among others, for a total of 9 Moments.
The way the NugTools team does development takes advantage of modern day tools to fast track both cost and time spent, referred to jokingly as the ‘millennial way.’ “Things have changed,” Green explained. “Where in the past, to make a product, it’s more expensive to make the prototype. You had to actually pay for all the tooling up front. Nowadays it’s a little bit easier, especially with 3D printing.” The prototype was designed using software compatible with the Makerbot 3D printer, allowing for prototypes to be printed right then and there. “Each tool we had to print out 3 or 4 times before we perfected it,” he added. Though the 3D printed Nuggy models weren't the exact representation of how the tools would move, it was something they used to work through the design and narrow down specifics.
There are exciting things in NugTools’ future. To start, the team is working on what they're calling the Nuggy 2.0. It includes the same 8 tools with relatively small updates. To start, it’s thinner and easier to open. The mini spoon was redesigned as a scoop with an open edge for better dabbing. The shell is no longer plastic. Instead, the case will be aluminum oxide and double as a carb cap. The second version is the Nuggy Lite, a 4-piece tool consisting of a roach clip, bowl scraper, pick, and knife. It’s everything you need for an easy, on-the-go experience. Due to its size and weight, Nuggy Lite will come with a keychain loop, and includes the LED flashlight feature and new aluminum oxide shell. The last model, the Nuggy Dab, will include a new tool—the mini fork, a scoop, pick, and paddle, tailored exclusively for the ultimate dabbing sesh. The aluminum oxide shell will also be included. Keep an eye out for the Nuggy 2.0, Nuggy Lite, and Nuggy Dab, coming to market later this year!