Suggestions For Small Commercial/Industrial Property

Hi All,

My wife recently needed to find a place to lease so her business has a legit commercial address. She works entirely from home however, so instead of renting an office space she would never use, she found a good deal on a small 750 sq ft warehouse type property with a wide roll-up door, concrete floors, high ceiling, bathroom and shop sink.

My wife’s business focuses on e-learning and corporate training, so when we viewed the property I asked the landlord if he would be OK with the property being used for education/training/classes on hemp processing that may involve things like ethanol extraction, distillation, chromatography etc, just to see if he would be cool with cannabis related activities occurring on his property and surprisingly he was all for it and even seemed slightly enthusiastic about the prospect.

The property is located in Brighton Colorado in an industrial zoned area and the neighbors who share the building are primarily hispanic-owned auto shops (mechanics, tinting, tires, detailing, etc). There is a 200 amp breaker box with several 120v outlets and two 220v outlets.

Now my Help Support / Request is for some suggestions on what you all think would be the best use of this space.

I had a thought of maybe an informal training lab that could provide people with hands-on opportunities for things like short path / wiper assembly & operation w/ diff pumps, water washing techniques with sep funnels /reactors, flash / vacuum chromatography w/ different columns and filter media etc.

My goal would be for the training/classes to have a strong focus on safety. The training materials would be partly derived from some of my favorite O Chem texts and lab manuals for a more academic feel. I would also want the classes to priced in a way to be accessible to almost anyone.

I was thinking in the area of around $80 for a 4hr class and $150 for an 8hr class, but a concern of mine is whether or not there are even enough people that would be interested in something like this at those prices to make it worth while.

Most of my equipment is already moved over, so I figure worst case scenario I can just set up a little R&D workspace for myself so I have a better place to run my equipment and experiment.

Sorry if this was long winded, just a thought I had and very much open to suggestions.

If you actually have the experience to hold that course and it to not be dogshit, your price is way too low. Shift the decimal place.


When I was licensed in CO we had to attend a transfilling class every year that was full of Uhaul employees and focused on propane fills.

I was thinking of having cannabis specific classes and seeing if I could get licensed through the state to do the annual certs for wooks.


Hey, thanks for the feedback. As far as experience goes, I am nowhere near as qualified as some of the other senior members offering classes, but I do have a Bio degree and took several 300 and 400 level chem courses while in school (O chem, P chem, A chem, all w/ labs). I also have about 3yrs experience working in cannabis processing labs in supervisor and management positions.

I have seen a concerning trend of new members who are longtime cannabis lovers, but with little/no actual processing experience making posts asking how to do certain reactions safely. This has me believing that there are a lot of people who want to try this stuff and are likely going to do it anyway, despite their lack of experience or warnings from other members.

As far as pricing goes, I would love to charge $800-$1500 for a class, but wouldn’t that price point be prohibitive for most of these folks? I am not trying to make a ton of money off of this and was approaching it more from the perspective of offering a useful service to the community that would hopefully cover rent/utilities, while also providing a space for knowledge sharing & collaboration.

Am I just being naive and idealistic thinking about this audience? My hope was that if these folks had an affordable option for some hands on experience, many would consider taking it prior to attempting to do whatever they were going to do at their home, and some otherwise dangerous situations could be avoided or at least mitigated.

Thanks again and all feedback is welcome.

Just remember the liability you are opening yourself up to.

Here is my worry. “Well, he said I’d be fine with an open flame in my garage as long as I had fans blowing.”

How many lawsuits from burned down buildings and/or apartments, trailers, houses are you willing to fight? The country is way to litigious these days for me to not make a profit.

That being said…I have been sued for a slip and fall, my buildings have been driven into 5 times since July of last year and a harassment complaint from a nutter. I lost the slip and fall, lost on one of the drive into building and won the rest. I was at fault zero times, could have won with a lawyer, chose to represent myself each time. Do you really want the opportunity to represent yourself with zero money being made?

Good intentions go best with a paycheck…get that money son


Regarding legal liability, establishing an llc may be a wise choice.


This would likely be created as a DBA under my wife’s e-learning business, which is currently a llc and she has a pretty decent lawyer she works with on a regular basis, so I likely would not be representing myself in one of those situations.

I definitely understand and appreciate the liability concern, though I imagine a fair amount of waivers and insurance will be involved, and I have not really heard of this sort of thing occurring frequently, or at all with the other members/organizations offering classes, but I could absolutely be wrong about that.

How about a price point of $250 for a 4hr course and $400 for 8hrs?

Would that still be accessible to individuals who may not currently be employed by a company willing to cover their training/class fees?
If enough people are interested, that price point should allow me to offer slightly higher quality courses while also turning enough of a profit to keep me incentivized.

My overhead will be relatively low and I already possess much of what would be required to get started, so very little, if any additional investment would be required.

Thanks again for the feedback everyone, it is appreciated.

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Thats closer to being on par with bartending school, just minus all the liability. It will also weed out (pun intended) some of the undesirables.


If you’re ever nearby and want to talk shop and markets I’m in Firestone and Georgia Boys not far off hwy 52 has some fantastic BBQ


I don’t know how you’re going to run any potentially explosive solvents without actually having licensing and the associated upgrades and compliance to do so.

I’d also recommend perhaps teaming up with an existing company that sells equipment to sponsor your lab, and you can be a bit of a showroom/teaching place, coupled with direct sales so you can double down on your revenue streams.

Are there any compliance courses/safety required in Colorado? Perhaps quality assurance or other bodies too? You might be able to do some of the required registered courses there as well if there’s some other regulatory bodies involved.


If that business has any value whatsoever, definitely create a separate LLC for liability. Otherwise you risk losing all the assets of your wife’s company if you ever get sued. Establishing an LLC is very inexpensive.

There is also the issue where your wife’s existing liability insurance would likely not cover her for anything if they discovered that you were operating this other business under the same name. DBA does not provide any firewall whatsoever.


I understand the risk/liability/compliance issues with potentially explosive solvents, which is why I have not mentioned anything related to butane/propane/compressed gas processing techiniques in the initial post.

I would absolutely love to offer classes featuring butane/propane processing techniques, and currently possess much of that equipment to do so as well, but I have no intention of doing that without first putting a blast booth in there. However, this could be a potential possibility down the line if there is enough interest and enough capital generated by then to do so.

My thought is that focusing primarily on the topics I previously mentioned, while still having some risk associated due to things like ethanol/heptane/pentane and acids/bases, would not present as much of an issue when it comes to licensing and compliance, but I could absolutely be wrong about that as well.

(I know the 3 solvents I mentioned above can be potentially explosive under the right conditions, but I figured you were referring to compressed gasses)

Thanks again for the feedback, most appreciated.

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All good.

I think you move from C1D1 to C1D2

But you’ll almost certainly need some kind of localised fire suppression, drainage, etc. Unless you’re running on very micro scale. Alcohols and alkanes in any quantities above a gallon would probably need some fire protection, especially if any of it is considered in process or phase change.

It might be an interesting endeavor for insurance as well, having untrained operators under your liability.

I’m not saying it’s not worth doing, but I’m almost certain it won’t be simple. Mind you, I don’t know much about Colorado regulations, bit I don’t think they vary hugely from other states.

You might have to do your demos with water or something if you want to run things on the cheap, and then perhaps team up with someone with a processing license to do a “hands on” approach for the final day of your course with real solvents.

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Yeah don’t do a dba…

@ BrotanicalMatt Thanks for the feedback. The only reason I am thinking along those lines is because her business is already tied to that address, but after a little checking, it looks like there are no issues with operating 2 distinct businesses/LLCs out of the same physical address, so I will likely go that route. Thanks again.

Thanks so much for the offer, I will definitely take you up on that. Reaching out through dm.

@tweedledew Drainage is already built in, but I do not believe the building has a sprinkler system. How localized are we talking for the fire suppression? Any chance having a bunch of these Rangehood - Stovetop Firestop placed in some hoods located above the lab tables would suffice?

For storage, I already have a few of those yellow flame cabinets that I can use, which should be big enough to store all the flammable materials I would be working with.

Hence the heavy focus on safety and attempting to keep it as academic as possible.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not completely sold on this idea and am definitely open to others if something like this just isn’t worth the trouble. I was hoping that having this be widely accessible would result in some folks being more safety-minded and maybe at least result in some harm-reduction, but I am not sure I would think it would be worth it if it was next to certain that I would be frivolously sued multiple times by people I was genuinely trying to help out.

I did like the ideas of compliance/QC related courses and equipment sales. Mushrooms are still pretty big in the Denver/Boulder area so I did have a backup idea of maybe focusing primarily on mushroom related classes (cultivation/sterilization, building your own flow hood/SAB, making your own spore syringes/prints, etc), which could also easily be paired with cultivation supplies/equipment sales.

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Letting me build a skate ramp in there is a pretty solid plan :smiley:

I assure you i’ll get you high as shit all the time


lol, not a terrible idea if I can charge people a few bucks to use it when you’re not around and at least get the rent covered. Its a 25’x30’ space with maybe 35’ ceilings so you could get a decent sized ramp in there

Though based on the previous feedback, chances are that a bunch of people would deliberately fall so they can sue the shit out of me.


:blush: not trying to be discouraging

But… Make sure you’ve spent the hours/money researching the feasibility of this project before you get the ball rolling.

The regulatory hoops to jump through aren’t going to be small.

I don’t know enough about Colorado regulations to chime in. But maybe the first question you’ll want to ask is what volume of solvents you’re allowed to deal with before you’re going to require fire suppression/explosion proofing.

Showing a 2L rotovap in operation might be entirely different than a 20L, or some semblance of falling film.

If it’s all in smallish/pilot size you might be just fine.

You’re 99% going to need to hire an engineer or two if it’s not on benchtop scale.

If you’re going above bench top your budget is going to be in the tens of thousands of dollars.

If that’s not reasonable for you, I’d look into your bench top options; or perhaps do your final day of classes at a regulated facility with hazard compliancy.

Blast proof vents and all the bells and whistles to go with it. Probably a C1D1.

My buddy is holding an extraction license. Doesn’t seem like he’s doing a fucking thing with it, but i’ve poked around the regs a bit. They are EXPENSIVE.

There’s a good reason why there’s not many new extractions companies popping up in CO - and the ones that are common here have enough gas money to operate in a few states.

It fucking sucks.