Borderlands Pre Sequel Guide: How to Use the Grinder

Check this guide out for all info on using Grinders in Borderlands The Pre-Sequel!

Borderlands The Pre-Sequel added a few new features to those familiar to the series. One of the coolest is the Grinder. This lets you put in 3 items, then combine them to make a new, sometimes better, item.

There does not seem to be any rhyme or reason to using this machine at first glance, but as you experiment, you notice there are certain recipes. These aren't recipes for specific gun, but rather gun types, such as a sniper rifle or rocket launcher. You can even get new legendaries by using it!

I'll explain exactly how the Grinder works, recipes for getting what you want, and tips on using it. For other guides and tips, check out my Borderlands Pre Sequel Beginner's Guide: Tips for Conquering Elphis.

This guide will cover everything about the Grinder including:

  • Unlocking the Grinder - How and when you unlock it.
  • How to use the Grinder - What you can put in the Grinder.
  • Grinder Recipes - The current known recipes for the Grinder
  • Grinder Tips - Tips on getting what you want from the Grinder.

Unlocking the Grinder

The Grinder is located in the main city, Concordia, in Janey Springs' workshop. When you first reach Concordia, she isn't there yet. You have to continue the main story until you come back to Concordia and Janey is there. 

She will have a side-quest called, "Grinders" that is level 11 on your first play through. After completing this mission, you will unlock the ability to sue the Grinder. After doing this, if you start True Vault Hunter Mode, you won't need to do the quest again to use it.

How to use the Grinder

Using the Grinder is simple, you put in 3 items, press the grind button, then get out a new item. The items, most of the time, have to be the same type and rarity to grind. This means that you have to use either all weapons, class mods, grenade mods, Oz kits, or shields. You can't mix any of those. The rarity is the color of the item. For example if you use a blue item, all must be blue.

The exception is grinding legendary items. You can grind 2 legendary items and 1 purple to get a new legendary. There is a list later in this guide that shows recipes. Also, check out my How to Get Legendaries guide for more details.

When using the Grinder, you can either get an item of the same quality, or one level higher. This means that if you grind 3 blue items, you can either get another blue item, or a purple item.

Moonstone Grind

You can also choose to use moonstones when using the grinder. This gives you the highest possible quality item out of the 3 items you put in the Grinder. So using this with 3 blue items will always give you a purple item.

You also get a chance to have an extra effect on your item called Luneshine. Here is a list of possible Luneshine effects:

  • Higher Maximum Shields
  • Reduced O2 consumption rate
  • Extra Grenade damage 
  • Extra Experience from killing enemies
  • Restores shields from killing enemies
  • Higher Critical hit damage
  • Restores O2 from damaging enemies
  • Chance to ignore enemy shields

Grinder Recipes

If you put in 3 guns at random, there is no telling what you'll get, but if you follow the recipes below, you can get the desired item every time. All of these recipes have to have the same rarity type, except when grinding legendaries.

Gun Types

  • SMG - Pistol, Assault Rifle, and Shield.
  • Rocket Launcher - Any 2 weapons and a grenade mod. 
  • Assault Rifle - SMG, Sniper Rifle, and Shield.
  • Sniper Rifle - Shotgun, Assault Rifle, and Shield.
  • Shotgun - SMG, Pistol, and Shield.

Rarity Types

Note: This is for using moonstones. If you use normal grind you can still get these result, but there is a chance you'll get a lower rarity.

  • Green (Random) - 3 different white weapons.
  • Green (Specific) - 2 white weapons of the same type and 1 weapon of any type.
  • Blue (Random) - 3 different green weapons.
  • Blue (Specific) - 2 green weapons of the same type and 1 green weapon of any type.
  • Purple (Random) - 3 different blue weapons.
  • Purple (Specific) - 2 blue weapons of the same type and 1 blue weapon of any type.
  • Legendary Weapon (Specific) - 2 legendary weapons of any type and 1 purple weapon. Whichever purple you choose will be the type of weapon you get out.

You can also grind shields, class mods, grenade mods, and Oz kits using the above recipes. I haven't tried grinding a legendary item besides a weapon, so I'm not sure if it works for these as well.

Grinder Tips

Here are a few tips to remember when using the Grinder:

  • ALWAYS use moonstone grind when grinding Legendaries. You don't want to end up with a purple item and waste 2 legendaries.

  • Use your highest level items. The level of the item produced is an average of the 3 items put into the Grinder.
  • Pick up several items. You never know what you might want to grind later.
  • Use moonstones when you can. If you can afford to, use moonstones always. The chance to get Luneshine makes the weapons even better.

That's it for my Grinder guide for Borderlands The Pre-Sequel! Let me know if you find anything else out or have any questions. Please visit my Beginner's guide for more tips and guides on this game.

Guide Editor

After gaming for 25 years, Synzer leveraged his vast knowledge of RPGs and MMOs into a job as a games journalist, covering the games he loves. Five years later, he's still writing about Kingdom Hearts, Pokemon, and Knights of the Old Republic. Synzer has a bachelor's degree in English and creative writing. You can see him in action on his YouTube channel (https://bit.ly/2F97BrR) and Twitch (https://www.twitch.tv/synzergaming).

Published Oct. 20th 2014
  • egonspeng
    I tried grinding 2 lasers and a SMG, all blue rarity, but it wouldn't accept. Why's that?
  • Edward_9156
    Hello appreciate for ur effort, quick question here is there any way to control the element of the gun? I used many element guns but all came with no element
  • Synzer
    Guide Editor
    I think element is random.
  • Tony_5547
    You can get Legendaries as long as one of the 3 purples has the red text.
  • viva4184
    It wont let me grind 3 purple sheilds. Why not?
  • The codeson
    My brother did three completely random purple shotguns, didn't use moonstones and got a legendary shotgun. Figures he gets the slim chance while guesting off me lol
  • fratnagg
    the only recipe i can get to work is any 2 weapons + grenade mod. what am i doing wrong? all same rarity (green) all L28 (my level) nothing with shield works
  • Tung yat
    Hey, just wanna ask, does it apply to shields? Like if I wanted to get the black hole then if I put in 2 legendary weapons and a purple nova shield then would it work
  • Synzer
    Guide Editor
    I haven't tried that, I assume it would work. If you have those items, then just try it out, if it lets you grind, then you should get a legendary shield.
  • Gilbert romero
    You can grind class mods and oz kits
  • Sam O Cuimin
    Thanks for the info! Greatly appreciate.
  • Mamat_4174
    Combining 3 different type green item doesnt always result in blue item. Sometimes, I got another green item, some even with morse stats than the 3 item I grind. Sorry bout my English btw.
  • Synzer
    Guide Editor
    Did you use moonstone grind? If you don't there is a chance you'll get the same color item out.
  • Stephanie_5471
    I don't think you can grind shields or Oz kits. However, you can farm vending machines, if the boss fights are lacking legendary loot.
  • Josh_6772
    No pistol recipe?
  • Synzer
    Guide Editor
    Not that I've seen. The only way I know of is to use 3 pistols.

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