CANNABIS CONCENTRATES ARE HOT

Solvent-based extracts are derived using a hydrocarbon. In contrast, a solventless extract is a gooey resin refined without the aid of chemical solvents. Solvent-free is where it gets confusing. This term refers to a solvent extract that is later purged to remove the residue. The range of consistencies and the various recipes to extract resin have made cannabis concentrates popular at home and in the dispensary.

Rather than smoking cannabis flowers, concentrate enthusiasts prefer to vape or dab their stash. These consumption methods increase the bioavailability of the cannabinoids significantly. And given that cannabis concentrates typically contain 50%+ THC, users have never been getting so much bang for their buck.

OLD-SCHOOL SOLVENTLESS HASH

Hashish is the original cannabis concentrate. Traditionally made without solvents, high-grade old-school hash like charas is hand-rubbed directly from flowers and scraped from sticky palms with a knife and rolled into a temple ball. This process is labour-intensive, but can still produce a top-shelf concentrate even by today’s standards.

However, by far the most common method for making old-school hash was and still is via dry sifting. Dried cannabis flower is rubbed over a screen to separate the trichomes, essentially turning trichomes into a pile of crystals or kief. This kief is then scooped into moulds, heated, and pressed into blocks of hash using industrial presses.

These methods originated on the Indian subcontinent and across the Middle East. Quality varies considerably depending on how resinous the original flowers were, and if the hash-maker decided to whack his hash blocks down with all kinds of adulterants from vegetable oil to car tires. This kind of hash will always contain some excess plant matter.

All things considered, clean dry sift hash is still a great smoke. Sample the kief collecting in the bottom of your weed grinder and find out for yourself. Alternatively, invest in a shaker and make your own pollen, which you can mint into a hash coin with a hand press.

Hashish from Cannabis

SOLVENT STASH - BHO, SHATTER, AND WAX

The first modern cannabis concentrate was BHO or butane hash oil. This black goo became very popular during the early 2000s. It is still a staple of most dispensaries, and has also become very popular amongst homemade concentrate fans. As butane is a flammable solvent, making BHO can be dangerous. Blasting a tube full of buds with a can of butane and collecting the runoff is a really crude way to make BHO.

Moreover, the unrefined oil must be purged before it’s fit for human consumption, and usually requires whipping it into budder with a hot plate or the use of a desiccation vacuum chamber to remove butane residue. A lot can go wrong trying to make this stuff at home, and most smart stoners don’t mess with such incendiary processes anymore.

Professionals will use a closed-loop system to make clean BHO and purge it to perfection with deep freezing, before using vacuum ovens to turn it into all kinds of wonderful honeycombed wax and/or slabs of shatter.

LAB-GRADE SUPERCRITICAL CO₂ EXTRACTS

Supercritical CO₂ extraction is the method of choice for creating golden-grade CBD oil. This is typically sourced from high-CBD hemp strains farmed legally across the EU. As it is a process that requires the use of high-tech machinery, it’s not something you can replicate at home.

But the leading CBD oil manufacturers love this advance method as it ensures no unwanted plant matter hitches a ride along with the precious cannabidiol. The CBD and terpene-rich extract is then blended with carrier oils to increase the bioavailability and create a variety of concentrations of CBD oil. Of all the solvent-based extract methods, this one is the most high-tech and arguably the best.

Cannabis Hash Oil Wax

HOMEMADE SOLVENTLESS ICE HASH

Water is technically a solvent, but since it’s not a chemical, ice hash is classed as a solventless extract. Using ice water and bubble bags with fine micron screens is a great way to make some incredibly potent full-melt hash. But if you’re lazy, you can use a Bubbleator B-Quick machine to do the labour for you. It’s also less of a clean-up job afterwards if you use the machine. Best of all, you can even convert sugar leaves into a supreme stash.

The whole process works because the cold water and agitation separate the trichomes from the buds and leaves. Then, gravity sinks the hash to the bottom. All you have to do is scoop out the awesome ice hash from the isolator bag. Well-made ice hash can be just as potent as the best solvent-extracted shatter. The frostier the sticky green raw material, the danker the finished product will be.

SOLVENTLESS ROSIN

Rosin relies on heat and pressure to squeeze some dank oil from flowers. This can be accomplished by squishing a bud with a hair straighter wrapped in some baking paper. The rosin will be the gooey residue on the paper. As you would expect, rosin is tremendously potent and the new favourite solventless extraction method for fans of homemade concentrates.

Although, if you want the best return on your reefer, you’ll need to invest in a press with temperature-controlled settings. Nevertheless, rosin is great for dabbing and vaping. Rosin is also a key ingredient if you want to make a moonrock or a sunrock. Coat your bud with a drizzle of rosin, smother it with kief, and you’ve got an artisanal cocktail concentrate to toke on.

By Top Shelf Grower

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