What are Cannabis Oil, Shatter, and Wax and Concentrates?
Wax, Shatter, BHO, Hashish, Concentrate, Cannabis Oil, Cannabis Honey, Budder, Sap and Dabs... are some of the names given to the concentrated for of Cannabis extracted from the flowering tops and leaves using various chemical and non-chemical extraction methods. You have more than likely heard one or more of these terms and you may or may not know what they are. For those that don't and want to learn how to safely make their own at home, I've written this tutorial for you.
For those of you who are just now coming to the whole wax, shatter and concentrates world, a cannabis extract is any oil that concentrates the plant's chemical compounds like THC and CBD, Terpens and other essential hydrocarbons, oils and cannabinoids. This can be achieved through a variety of processes.
- Chemical solvent based extraction
- Temperature based extraction
- Slow cooking method (Cannabutter, Cannabis infused cooking oil)
Here is a great article by Leafly that explains the various differences in concentrates: https://www.leafly.com/news/cannabis-101/what-is-cannabis-oil-shatter-and-wax/
The Isopropyl Extraction Method
I am going to be talking about how to make Shatter quality concentrate without using Butane or CO2 etc. Today we shall be looking at my favorite method of extraction, which is done using the Isopropyl Alcohol.
Alcohol has been used to extract the oils of plants and flowers for thousands of years and is a tried and true method with a long history of successful human testing. It is clean. It is easy and simple. Most of all it is cheap and doesn't not require any fancy materials. Isopropyl alcohol 91% conains 91% Isopropynol and 9% H2O (water). Consult the MSDS: https://www.lewisu.edu/academics/biology/pdf/isopropanol_91.pdf -- Please google for other MSDS resources and verify for yourself.
- Cannabis (a quarter ounce of ground up flowers)
- 91% Isopropyl Alcohol
- A few plastic cups
- Pyrex bowl
- Baine Marie Basin setup (a sink full of water)
- Hot air gun or blow dryer for hair
Obviously, the need to be careful goes without saying. :)
The Extraction Process
Step 1 - Get The Cannabis Flowers
Get a quarter ounce from your bag of weed. :)
My nug weight a quarter by itself, so I just ground that up.
Step 2 - Grind the Cannabis Flowers
Step 3 - Bake your Cannabis Flowers (Decarboxylation process)
You want to bake your cannabis for about 1/2 hour at the lowest temperature setting. This allows it to not overheat, but slowly and gradually yet thouroghly lose the COOH carboxyl group which evaporates as CO2 and H2O.
Step 4 - Freeze Cannabis & Alcohol
Put both items in the freezer overnight.
You want the ground up Cannabis flowers and the alcohol to reach sub-zero temperatures.
Step 5 - Extraction Time
Take out the Cannabis and alcohol from the freezer and pour the alcohol into the container that has the cannabis flowers.
The key point here is this: Make sure that the total time the alchol is contact with the flowers is no more than 15 seconds total
As soon as you pour the alcohol into the container, you want to mix/stir it for 5 seconds, then you want to start straining it out. The maximum time that the alchol should be in contact with the Cannabis during the entire mixing, stirring and straining process should be no more than 15-20 seconds maximum. This is they to this beautiful extraction process.
You will be left with a bright yellow colored liquid in the cup after you are done straining it.
This is what the extracted cannabis looks like after it has been strained.
Step 6 - Prepare a Baine-Marie Basin
Find out more about the Baine-Marie evaporation technique: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bain-marie
Fill a sink with hot water. Take a pyrex bowl and let it float in the water. Let it sit so the bowl gets hot in the water.
Step 7 - Strain the Mixture Through A Filter
Put a coffee filter over the strainer and slowly pour the mixture into it little by little while you stir it and make sure it's all strained into the pyrex bowl.
Step 8 - Dry the Mixture Using a Blow Dryer
Now get a hair blow dryer and set it on the lowest setting. I eventually got myself a 1500W hot air gun, it's very high temperature and the air pressure is very low. It's perfect for drying out concentrates! :)
Now just slowly blow dry your mixure that is in the pyrex bowl.
Be sure to take a break and pull the pyrex tray out, change the water if it gets too cool with hot water again and repeat the process.
Eventually you wll be left with pure cannabis concenrated oils and wax. When the 91% Alcohol dryes out, there will be the 9% water left. Continue to dry and within minutes it will start to look like this.
Continue drying it until it is not liquid any longer and doesn't move around at all. It should be a thick consistency.
Step 9 - Whipping The Budder/Wax
The whipping is done to make sure that the texture is smooth and consistent and that there is nothing trapped within.
Step 10 - Almost done! I promise.
That looks beautiful! :) Let it Sit and Dry for another 10-15 minutes and it will be ready. And wow... LOOK AT THAT It is beautiful and super high quality, clean and doesn't contain any impurities or solvent remnants. :) Now you're ready to get stoned and meditate!
Step 11 - Weigh it! See what you got!
With this method, you will pull about 1.2 to 1.5 grams of super high quality concentrate out of every 7 grams of cannabis.
Enjoy the dabs! :)
Now get your rig out and start enjoying your dabs! :) Get stoned and meditate!
Here's my guide on how to meditate while on Cannabis: https://steemit.com/cannabis/@the-stoned-ape/how-the-stoned-ape-meditates-on-cannabis
Please let me know in your comments what you think of my extraction method or if you try it. Feel free to ask any questions and I would be delighted to help.