Sunday, 12 July 2015
I've written before about how much I admire the art or science of alchemy. Creating. It's an admirable thing no matter what the end result is. But when the end result puts a smile on your face, then even the act of creating this thing, can be a part of the thrill. If the product of your alchemic process--whatever that may be-- alters your thoughts from negative or apathetic to positive and happy, then all the more reason to try it.
There's this really popular book out there written a long time ago that states that we all have the power to heal. In each of us, it says, is the power to heal not only what ails you, but what ails others as well. We have the power it preaches. Well who knew it would be the potheads who took those words to heart eh? The potheads know what the medical marijuana patients know. This plant is medicine. Now ... how do we get those minuscule molecules of medicine out of that plant and into your body safely and effectively? That my dear ... is the question.
Nowadays, there are more ways to create medicinal cannabis concentrate than ever before, and not all of them without danger. When I hear of an explosion in a home, I pray it wasn't in the alchemic process, but sometimes it is. Solvents are explosive. Care must be taken. Some say laws need to be made. In fact, Colorado voted in April to make it a felony to use explosive gases to make hash oil at home.
Yet these potheads ... they be productive and they be adaptable. I rarely use the word "pothead" because it has a certain image attached to it. That image is all too often false. I mean, what is a pothead? If it's someone who ingests this plant all day every day, then that could represent a huge portion of the work force out there. That's right, the next double double you get may have been made by someone with cannabinoids coursing through their veins, taking away their pain and stiffness, allowing them to earn a living. And when their work day is over, they're home trying to come up with more safe ways to make their medicine more pure and more effective. If solvent is frowned upon, what else could we use, they ponder between puffs.
One such alchemist has come up with a brilliant way to produce concentrate without a solvent and by the sounds of things, it's really catching on. They call it the Rosin technique and aside from your Cannabis bud, the process only requires two things: a flat iron for hair straightening, and some parchment paper (not to be confused with wax paper). People in the hair business know that ceramic is best because it allows a high but even heat. For this process, it's nice to be able to regulate the heat to between 300 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit, as THC burns off at 315 degrees. Like a vaporizer or an electronic dab rig with a heat dial, higher heat will likely leave you with resin that is higher in the other cannabinoids, with less THC. It's difficult to know until you consume it I guess. As you can see from the pics in this article it quite literally liquefies and then squeezes the resins right out of the bud.
So the couch activist gave it a whirl ... and ya ... it friggin works! I used .47g of mid grade og kush and got a substantial sized caramel coloured dab. I wasn't able to accurately measure the heat on my old iron but I pressed it down hard for about seven seconds. The vapor coming up was identical to vapourized cannabis, so I may have been too hot. My photography is severely lacking and I didn't remember to weigh it before trying it. But wow it was nice.
Of course I have questions .. I always have questions. Does this process of heat and pressure extract the same quantity of cannabinoids that a solvent extracts? I can't wait til they make at-home concentrate testing devices. They could call it the "iTest" :) But if it does extract comparable amounts, it's a fairly substantial cost reduction vs using a Honey-Bee extractor and expensive butane. And the safety issue is as they say ... priceless.
I'm a totally "waste-not/want-not" kind of person so I not only want to know about the end-product of the process, but I also want to know if the bud is useful after it's been pressed and heated. I will say, it has a slightly popcorn-y scent to it. I wonder if any cannabinoids remain? I wonder if you could now grind it up and wash it with a solvent and get even more compounds out? The beauty is, if I have these queries, then I know others do too. And well ... those potheads ... we be productive. I'm sure someone is testing and dabbing and sampling even as we speak. I'll keep you posted :)