POST CATEGORY: Special

Concentrates Issue 2017: Rosin

July 06, 2017 | NORTHWEST LEAF

A guide to Rosin tech.

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Technology has pushed the extraction of Cannabis forward with expensive machines, exotic solvents and methods requiring more advanced science year after year. But Rosin is a method of Cannabis extraction that uses methods much simpler and cleaner than most solvent processes. Rosin is totally natural and uses only heat and pressure. So get squishing!

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You can press Hash using parchment, a MASH bag or another brand micron bag. 

- Gloves
- Forceps
- Scale
- MASH bags
- Parchment
- Dabber for collecting
- And a press


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How did you get involved in the Cannabis community and start innovating with these products?

Been working with mesh and shirt supplies for 18 years, and we have worked to provide mesh and screens to hash makers back in 1999. I was doing dry sift hash with tumblers and I would take mesh from the shop and put it around a drum with holes in it and tumble it over a piece of glass. That was my first experience with hash making. I’ve been selling raw mesh to hash makers for as long as I have worked at the company. So then I became friendly with Cannabis processors and would talk in a way where people could trust, as soon as Washington legalized it was a whole different ballgame. It’s like night and day, and now we are in the mainstream providing to pot companies all over the country.

So you’ve been at this for a long time, making and helping others make dry sift and solventless bubble hash. When did Rosin come on the scene for you? 

When BHO became illegal for patients to process in Washington in 2015 we saw a shift from people using basic technology like hair straighteners and modified shirt presses toward commercial extraction of Rosin. We started selling a lot more of our bags that are specifically designed for Rosin then, and started making our own machines and ultimately selling them.

Since that time, Rosin has really taken off nationally, and you guys are at the cutting edge of providing the best bags for squishing the material in, as well as machines for companies to use. Can you tell us about your process?

Early on with hash making with Rosin we realized that regular screen printing meshes weren’t necessarily the best for it, and you might see other Rosin makers using dyed or yellow bags, which yellow mesh is something specific for screen printing, but what we found is that the dyes will leach into the hash, so we only use a dye free bags and threads. The reason we know it is we’ve seen purple threads on bags that turned the oil that color, so dye free is what we go with. We also use only stainless steel in our plates for pressing, which protects the plant matter from metals like aluminum or titanium, and we have quality electronic controls that are safe and easy to use.

What makes MASH different and how do you support your clients? 

We do a lot of training for customers, people can certainly come to our shop for a demo and we will show benefits of our bags and presses, and we can do hands-on at our location or theirs, and we will go to them and train people how to do it, and we often leave the press there because they buy it! We want our customers to be as successful as possible, and really go the extra mile to give the support and education needed!

Where do you see the rosin market heading in the future? 

The Rosin market is a fraction of a fraction of consumers, so it’s an area that we think we need to inform the consumers more on the safety and cleanliness of Rosin. I think people are still hitting BHO because its less expensive, companies are still doing it because it’s on the books efficient and they white label, or if they do it on their own they spend $100,000 to build a 502 room. But for a few thousand and training you can do in-house and keep your trimmers and baggers employed and hold profit. We are seeing same, if not better, results from Rosin than BHO, so you can get a better yield in-house and not outsource, that’s a triple win, and the price of rosin is certainly higher than BHO in the market. I think eventually that could come down too.


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MICRON SIZE

This measurement refers to the tiny holes that allow the oil to pass through. One hundred and twenty microns is a very common size for Rosin, though flower might be pressed as small as 70 or 90 microns for dry material or trim, and as high as 150 to 220 microns for more coarse material. For people pressing bubble hash or dry sift, we recommend either 25 or 37 micron bags. An interesting note—the smaller the microns, the finer the threads, which is why the smaller micron bags are more expensive than larger.

POLISHING

Like winterizing an oil or dewaxing, polishing is a final press of collected oil that is done about 25 percent of the time. If there are any particulates left over or the bag had a blow out, a final lower pressure squish purifies quality and delivers the best looking and tasting product. The best temperature for polishing is 180 to 190, with about half the pressure of a flower squish.

BLOWOUT

Basically we are using extreme pressures, 20 tons can lift several cars and a bag is only so strong, you put a pillow of weed in the mesh, put excessive pressure things tend to break under impact, we tend to ease it, so it heats the pillow while slowly building pressure, we ease into the pressure.

RETURNS

With squishing flower there is a close correlation between THC percentage and overall return percent. If a plant is 20 percent THC, you can roughly expect a 20 percent return, so 5 grams of flower can yield up to a single gram of Rosin. With bubble hash or dry sift, the return is usually 50 percent, but can be in the 60s with great material.

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