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Dear Stoner: I keep seeing all these different "concentrates" in dispensaries, but I've yet to try any. I know this sounds dumb, but what is hash, exactly?

Ivana Tryit

Dear Ivana: What is hash? Awesomeness concentrated. Next time you get a good look at a bud, check out the white-to-amber crystals coating the flower itself. Those are called trichomes, and they contain most of the THC and other cannabinoids that get you buzzed. Separating those glands (aka kief) from the plant material and condensing them is how you make hash — which is much more potent by weight than cannabis flowers.

There are a few good ways to make hash. Probably the oldest method is to rub the buds in your hands to collect the kief and oils until they are thick enough to scrape off, collect and press into dark balls. Finger hash like this goes back thousands of years to India but is still really common around the world, especially in the Caribbean. Dry-sieve hash is another ancient method: Dried plants are banged over screens, dropping kief to a collection tray below; it's then pressed either by hand or with a mechanical press.

The two most common types of hash you'll see around Colorado today are made with more modern techniques. Icewater hash (or bubble hash) involves stirring cannabis into a bucket of extremely cold water to freeze and break off the trichome glands from the plant material. The weed/water mix is then poured through a series of three to five increasingly fine nylon mesh screens. The first bag collects all of the waste plant material, while the others collect the wet, mud-like trichomes. Once dried, this hash can get up into the 70 to 80 percent-THC range.

The other most common hash these days is extracted from the plant using chemicals. While they won't dissolve in water, THC glands are soluble in chemicals like butane and rubbing alcohol. For butane extractions, herb is crammed into a long metal or glass cylinder that's open on both ends, and liquid butane is sprayed down the tube and through a filter at the bottom opening. THC is dissolved into the butane, which is collected, then carefully heated and left in a vacuum chamber to evaporate the solvent. What is left is mega-potent THC wax (also called BHO or budder) that occasionally clocks in at 90 percent THC or higher.

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18 comments
DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Hey Billy ... why isn't this column categorized and keyword linked to "marijuana" like the rest of the pot propaganda?

Are you too embarrassed by the inane puerility of it? ... or is WW trying to bury and obscure access -- and limit advertising $$ -- by reducing the available web views ?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Your pal,

Donkey

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

"THC glands are soluble in chemicals like butane and rubbing alcohol."

Any non-polar solvent will do. Butane is one of the best and cleanest. "Rubbing alcohol" and other common alcohols are partially polar, so they drag unwanted chlorophyll and other undesirable plant solutes into the result.

"THC is dissolved into the butane, which is collected, then carefully heated and left in a vacuum chamber to evaporate the solvent."

Fools practice. Butane is a gas at room temperature, so no extra heat is necessary. Vacuum additionally lowers the boiling point, so again no external heat is needed. 

And contrary to what the anti-Butane know-nothing chemistry drop-outs spew, there is no butane or other "residue" in properly dried and evaporated oil extract. 


stuka1
stuka1

Really wish you would have taken this opportunity to educate the public about butane extraction, especially with respect to the fire/explosion dangers it can pose when done wrong: with poor equipment, inside a house or building, near flames or heat sources, etc.

Alchemy is for Wizards, not Muggles.

Monkey
Monkey

I have a question, or maybe an observation.

With concentrates roughly 4 times the THC content of really good buds, why don't you get 4 times as high? Sometimes I'll take 3 or 4 hits of super shatter, and it sure doesn't feel like 12 or 16 hits of the bud it came from. No matter how good the hash is, I still end up taking 2 or 3 hits, and to me, it feels similar to 5 or 6 hits of weed. Maybe it's just me.

Shebul
Shebul

cool dude be on the look out for some hash (nope) can't do it bummer

stuka1
stuka1

@DonkeyHotay Red bar across the top of the page. Right side. "MMJ" menu item. Left side of the drop-down menu.

hth you fucking idiot.

HelpingPhriendlyBook
HelpingPhriendlyBook

@Monkey odds are that you aren't taking a hit of hash that's equal in weight to the hit of flower, thus your conversion is off. All these percentages are done by weight. It would be extremely difficult to take as big of a hit of hash by weight as you can of flower due to the fact that an equal weight of hash will put off FAR more smoke than the same weight of flower. 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Monkey ... your cannabinoid receptors can only process so much THC, and given your eternally baked state, they're already working overtime to process what you intake.

Same reason a chronic alcoholic doesn't get twice as drunk from consuming twice as much alcohol on any given day.


stuka1
stuka1

@DonkeyHotay

"Stoners + Butane = Darwinism in Action"

Yeah. Like punk-ass whiny pussies who troll internet blogs mouthing off at people they don't know anything about.

hth moron.

Monkey
Monkey

@HelpingPhriendlyBook  I'll try that soon, smoke a 1/4 gram of shatter in the morning, then the next morning, I'll toke a 1/4 gram of the weed it came from and compare results. I get burned out on concentrates much quicker than buds so maybe I'm just prejudice.

Monkey
Monkey

@DonkeyHotay  If it's a tolerance thing, why does a couple hits of weed still work after all these years, but hash claiming to be 4 times as strong only gets me twice as high? 2 ounces of vodka works like 24 ounces of beers for me, why isn't the same true for weed/concentrates?

On a side note, I once knew a drunk who would act noticeably intoxicated after a few sips of wine, almost like the few sips activated all the residual alcohol in her system. It was strange to watch, she would hold off drinking for as long as she could, but showed signs of extreme intoxication as soon as she started.

stuka1
stuka1

@Monkey

"On a side note, I once knew a drunk who would act noticeably intoxicated after a few sips of wine, almost like the few sips activated all the residual alcohol in her system. It was strange to watch, she would hold off drinking for as long as she could, but showed signs of extreme intoxication as soon as she started."

Sounds like her liver was shot.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Monkey ... the first few hits take your lungs / CB receptors nearly up to their capacity to process the available THC. Your ability to process the THC via your delicate lung tissue reaches a plateau.

Do you get 4x as high when you smoke 4x the bud?

If' you really want to escape planetary orbit, take 1/2 or 1/3 gram of that hash or oil and eat it with a teaspoon or two of peanut butter, on an empty stomach.

Report back to us when you return.



 
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