Rosin refers to a cannabis concentrate created with moderate mechanical pressure and heat. It does not use a chemical solvent for concentrating cannabinoids and terpenes [1,2], and is a popular DIY extraction choice due to being easy and relatively safe to make. Furthermore, it is completely free of residual solvents.
Consumer– and commercial-grade rosin presses are available for purchase. These machines produce heat and pressure, the two requirements to create rosin. The main advantage of a rosin press is precision. Mechanical pressure, temperature, speed, and time can be tailored to desired consistency while preserving high levels of cannabinoids and terpenes. Depending on whether you are converting flower, kief, or hash, settings can be manipulated to unique temperature and pressure combinations.
If you are not interested in investing in a rosin press, it is possible to create rosin without special equipment. Phil Salazar of Soilgrown Solventless discovered rosin by accident when pressing no-melt hash with a hair straightener. Oil rich with cannabinoids and terpenes oozed from the plant matter. This happy accident also worked with dry flower. Salazar popularized rosin and moved on to more sophisticated technology. But the shoestring-budget solution remains .
- Hair straightener/flat iron
- Parchment paper
- Cannabis flower, kief, or hash
- Oven mitt or heat-resistant gloves
- Dabber/collection utensil
- Optional: filter bag
- Optional: clamp
What to Do:
- Set the temperature on your hair straightener. Salazar recommends 200-230° F for flower. Rosin Tech lists 150 – 170° F for hash and 180 – 200° F for kief.
- Remove the stems from a flower bud. It should be no larger than the flat iron plates. Place it onto a folded piece of parchment paper. Leave extra paper on both sides to catch the rosin.
- Optional: place flower in a filter bag to prevent plant matter from contaminating extracted oil. This is especially useful for hash and kief. Place the filter bag inside the parchment paper.
- Press the enfolded plant material between the heated straightener plates.
- If you have a bar clamp, place the straightener in its grip. Otherwise, apply pressure using the oven mitt/gloves.
- Salazar recommends 10-30 seconds for flower. However, variables must be adjusted for results. You may need to re-press. PurePressure points out that flower requires more pressure (600-1000 psi) than kief or hash (300-800 psi).
- Use the dabber utensil to collect the rosin from the parchment.
As mentioned, rosin presses are the ideal way to modulate temperature and pressure with precision. Hand-held devices like the CannaClamp are also available. In a bind, a hair straightener can be used. Either way, experimentation is the hallmark of the process.
- Lamy, Francois R., et al. “’You Got to Love Rosin: Solventless Dabs, Pure, Clean, Natural Medicine.’ Exploring Twitter Data on Emerging Trends in Rosin Tech Marijuana Concentrates.” Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 2018; 183: 248–252. Times cited = 2 (PubMed) Journal impact factor = 3.349
- Lawrence, Austin. Ways to Consider Non-Medical Cannabis: Reasoning from Conceptual Analogues. Public Safety Canada, 2016.
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