Wet Methods for Making Bubble Hash - Water, Ice, suspension, and filtration:
Opti says: When making bubble hash, you can go as simple as a tall jar and some ice cubes, as fancy as a bubble hash making machine, or you can get the latest filtration bags or high-tech THC extractors. For the beginner, we recommend a standard 2 or 3 bag system.
The idea is simple - THC trichomes are heavier than water. First you get them cold (to release from the weed) then you agitate and let settle. * Even in a simple jar of water specific gravity will separate the THC crystal, and it will sink to the bottom. Now cool the water to make the trichomes brittle and even more break off. Now if you go even further, and let it settle by passing through various 30 through 70 to 150 micron mesh ( filter bags ), now you can make sure the bits of green plant material don't get in to contaminate the crystal.
Bags Vs. No Bags? - Opti Says: It's really simple. Using simple specific gravity (no bags) to settle ALL your crystal will give you more output and more flavour for sure, but the chances of unwanted contamination increase. On the other hand when most people use 5 or 8 bags to separate the various grades of THC trichomes, the may get a somewhat "cleaner " more uncontaminated product, but much less quantity and most of all less FLAVOUR. The bags system often throws away the baby with the bath water so to speak - because when you dump everything below 30 microns you loose many of the terpins and oils that give more traditional hash its flavour.
The debate rages on - Bottom line is both have advantages and disadvantages. - it's a personal preference. Some guys swear by one and some the other. If using bags, Opti suggests a simple 2 bag setup more like like the 1st ice-o-lator bags (150 micron - 70 micron). If your going old school and want to make hash on a "professional" level - invest the 1K in Reinhard Delp's pioneering bubble hash making machine - the XTR-1000
Making Modern Bubble Hash using hash making bags is easy! (overview):
- Just put your hash making bags in a bucket of cold water.
- Fill 3/4 with cold water.
- Put in your dried weed trimmings and skuff.
- Cover with 2 bags of ice and more water.
- Leave and wait 15 minutes (water must be below 6C!)
- Agitate well with cake mixer for 20 - 30 minutes.
- Go away and let settle for 20 minutes.
- Slowly pull your hash making bags out and drain water.
- Scrape the THC resin pile from the bag and onto a pressing screen - or some paper towel.
- When at 98% dry - press your resin glands into hash.
- Smoke it!
We recommend you practice with some trimmings (skuff) until you get the hang of it. Then if you want to go to the SUPER PURE crystal - try it with some high quality bud! (weed tops) This filter bag system will get you the purest crystal, but the dry sifting way (pollinator) is more adjustable as far as quality. The longer you run it - the lower the quality gets!
Water + Ice + Filter =Bubble Hash Bags:
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The ice-water filtration technique is the most popular way to make hash (water hash, bubble hash, THC crystal, etc). This method combines the best of the screen and blender methods, using ice-water to make the trichomes brittle and agitation to knock the heads off, then straining the mix through filters for increased purity.
Hash made in this fashion is sometimes called "bubble hash" - because it is so pure that it bubbles when heated! Well-made bubble hash is a very potent product a tiny piece will produce enough billows of smoke to get a small crowd high.
The main commercial ice-water filtration systems available operate on the same principle of using cold water and filtering bags to isolate trichomes. You can also make your own kit by acquiring mesh of the appropriate sizes and carefully sowing it into bags of strong material.
In order to make bubble hash you'll need a kit with filtering bags, two impeccably clean five gallon pails and a hand mixer. The exact method can vary depending on which system you're using, but the essentials are the same. The Ice-o-lator uses two filters to screen out contaminates, leaving the trichomes caught in the second filter.
You will now have a brownish sludge at the bottom of the bags. Remove it with a credit card or spoon to a plastic bag. Blot the sludge with a towel to remove excess moisture, and let it dry out for at least 12 hours. You might want to wait up to a week for it to fully dry and cure, if you are that patient! Be sure that your product is entirely dried so as to avoid mold problems later on.
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You'll get less product from the 25 micron bag, but it will have a unique and potent affect when consumed. Bubble bag creator "Bubble Man" speculates that these are the smaller trichome heads not immature, but simply the smaller heads associated with Sativa strains. He argues that Indica strains have larger trichome heads, and that Sativa strains have smaller heads on longer stalks. Crosses between these two types doesn't produce medium sized trichomes, but rather a mix of the large and small. This theory seems to be borne out by results, but much more research needs to be done.
The yield from 200 grams of skuff is around 6 to 20 grams, with an average yield around 10 grams. The quantity of hash produced depends in large part upon the quality of your original material.
Washing Machine Ice-O-Lator:
The Ice-O-lator is the simplest & most efficient extraction method for the collection of mature resin glands from plant material. The use of very precise sieve size ensures only the collection of the desirable "mature" resin glands.
As out door & indoor grown plants have different sized resin glands (Outdoor being smaller) we stock both outdoor & indoor Ice-O-Lator kits designed for the different types of plants. The washing machine was designed to agitate the dirt from the fibres of your clothes, therefore the washing machine is also brilliant at agitating the resin glands from plant material. Instead of washing powder to aid the agitation we use very cold water & blocks of ice. The cold water hardens the resin glands & plant material, causing the plant material to hold together better. The movement of the water & ice cause the resin glands to drop off their brittle pedestals and sink in the water.
For those who wish to process a few kilos a day (4-6 dry leaf, 6-10 wet leaf) we have found the washing machine is a brilliant way to decrease the workload considerably. In the following photos we will show you how we have incorporated a washing machine into the Ice-O-Lator process and use it to great effect with very little work involved.