At current, the 710 hashtag dabslife pound sign community is a place bubbling with innovation. Tech that makes life easier. Dabbier. Flower and concentrate that is breaking records and boundaries where once there was no community whatsoever. Now, in the dabslife congregation, science and skill–stoner and scholar–are coming together, blurring the lines between smoking, dabbing and changing the game.
Rosin is historically and most commonly a semi solid plant resin derived from various pines and conifers. Often called colophony or Greek pitch, the resin is usually reserved as a pitching wax for violins and other string and bow instruments.
While it does have other uses, sometimes in soaps and adhesives, rosin’s new bag is very much so become something closer to home–especially for all us fucking stoners out there, amirite?
We kid. But aren’t kidding. Because “rosin tech” or the rosin technique, or stilo rosiliño as it’s called in our heads, is sweeping the dabslife by yellow storm.
Applying, in essence, the same techniques used in deriving pine rosin, rosin tech extraction combines heat and pressure to coax the extract from the flower or initial product being used (weed). With some non-stick parchment paper, a micron screen and some hot surfaces, it is completely possible for an everyday, non-chemist smokington to produce concentrate in a safe and solventless environment. Meaning no gases. And no explosions.
And being the cutting edge 710 journos concerned only with bringing the realest of content to your butts that we are, we knew it was not only our duty to take a stab at the dab and try to solventlessly produce some wax of our own, but our destiny.
1st test: sole flat iron.
Our first attempt at extraction was less than a success, to say the least. Supplies-wise, we were prepared. We had our screen and parchment. We had dabbing tools and almost exact temperatures (exactly what was needed for the process in terms of temp). Where we underestimated the process was in the combination of heat and pressure, as we had only the one heated surface.
Knowing good and well that this would be the first of several tries, we started with a smaller amount of flower than is usually recommended. We wanted to test it. So we took about a gram of heady Diesel and split it in half, using about .5 g for each initial run.
Placing the half-gram on our screen and then folding the weed-n-screen into the parchment paper, we then pressed the iron (preheated to about 205 degrees fahrenheit) to the packet, on top of an ironing board.
What you’re hoping to do is combine the temperature with ever-so-slightly-more-and-more pressure until the flower is condensed and pressed out flat, leaving its sticky love for us to consume of. What we kept getting here was flat weed. Some extract bled off, but it was more sweat than sweet. Our efforts had been spent, and only too late did we realize another hot surface was needed to match the side-for-side heat and pressure.
2nd test: straightening iron
After mining for a little research, and hoping to accrue a wider scope of possibility, we decided the next test would be with a straightening iron. Found in most all homes of females and Fabio, a standard industry straightening iron usually burns between about 250 and 400 degrees fahrenheit. That’s a tweenagesy bit hotter than would be the utmost preferred temp, but we figured with a stringent and small window for how pressurized we could get thanks to the hinged device, we’d be able to get away with it.
One of our dabboliers and resident outerns Terry Baks knows a girl named Ashley who claims to make straight iron rosin “all the time,” but in his own words, “I couldn’t bare to make my mind start having to consider even getting in contact with that lunatic. She’s the worst. And then we’d have to fuck.”
So it looked like we were on our own.
We kept the iron at the lowest heat signature, just under 250 degrees, and again, used a .5 gram so as not to ruin anything more in case we should fail. With the same set-up of non-stick parchment paper folded over the screen and bud, we went to work. Let heat sit, apply pressure, hold for about forty seconds to a minute, then release. Readjust the paper if necessary or helpful, and repeat. What resulted was little more than the poop sweat obtained from our earliest flat iron run. Mildly more product, easily more poopsweaty.
Whether it was Ashley’s fault or not is neither here nor there. It wasn’t. But it’s hard not to agree with Terry. Especially on this.
No doubt our next test would have to be the winner. So we called in some backup to save face and ass.
3rd test: flat iron + hot plate combo
An experienced professional. An extractor and chemist. A stand up guy with a cock like a thoroughbred, JustOn– the man behind JustBlaze CreatiOns– came in to show us the cleanest, tastiest and safest way to make rosin. And make it right.
And his key, the thing that separates him from the rest of those jamoke bastards out there trying to sling together some poxy dirtshit and pass it off as wax, is the implementation– of a hot plate.
Being not only a chemist and farmer, but chef to boot, Just’s first thoughts on using one of his kitchen hot plates came after he had been blasting with butane for some time. Owning a 1 by 2 griddle plate that could simmer at heats right in and under the projected 205 degrees, Just saw this baby as the perfect foil to the low heat flat iron his wife Barb uses. As well, applying more pressure in the dual heated environment means more heat expulsion, but not degradation, as the heat burns evenly on both sides, and the pressure is consistent.
Trusting in our man, we broke up an 8th into little groups of .5 and got to work. And our results were all we had hoped.
About a gram and a half of some amber–leaning on chocolate-colored rosin tech concentrate lay before us. Coaxing us. Seducing and calling to us. You are my maker. Now smoke of me.
The smoke was heavy. Not harsh, persay, but definitely not the smoothest thing you’ve ever inhaled. The earthen qualities. The leafy, plant-y aftertaste is something that I actually very much enjoyed about the stuff, whereas bho-fessional JustOn said the flavor could even be fuller. Danker. But to be completely honest, I don’t know what the fuck he’s talking about. Sure, everything could be better, probably. But why fuck a lame horse in the ass if he’s got a perfectly good hand, right?
To close, our adventures in rosin land were fun. Educational. Mind expanding. Eye opening. Listing these off, I feel like I’m a Gene Shalit quote reel, but in truth, we actually learned how to do something. Something new, and useful, and relevant, and important if you work for a magazine dedicated to the extraction of THC and other compounds from marijuana.
Making rosin really felt like a DIY home craft project, and in that, it was also very fun. Bringing people together all the time, as the Dabs Mag slogan demands, is something that is not only important, but helpful when trying to extract psychoactive agents from biological matter.
So keep that in mind the next time you think you can do it all on your own. ‘Cause somewhere there’s an Ashley out there. And she’s been said to be the worst.
Pics courtesy of JustBlaze CreatiOns