By Johnny Green
There are a lot of things in the marijuana world that have existed for a very long time, but due to the increasing spread of marijuana information and new names being applied to old things, it seems like there is new stuff being invented/created all the time when it comes to marijuana. The truth is, most if not all things in the marijuana world have existed for decades. For instance dabs are not new in the marijuana world, even though most mainstream media outlets act like dabs were just discovered yesterday.
I remember the first time someone asked me if I wanted a dab hit. I had never seen it done with a torch and nail before, but the product itself (hash made with a solvent) I had seen many times before. In Oregon a lot of the old schoolers I knew would make what they called ‘honey oil’ that they would apply to the outside of joints for special occasions. I remember asking ‘what are dabs?’ After I got the explanation, I remember thinking in my head ‘oh, you mean hash that was made with blasting.’ I have obviously found out that the processes being used to make today’s solvent hash is far more complicated than what my older friends were doing back in the day, but the product existing itself was nothing new.
Earlier this year I was asked if I had ever tried ‘Rosin Tech.’ I wasn’t sure what the person was talking about, and after asking them to describe it, I was a bit confused. In my defense, I was high like the eagle, and at the time I had it in my head that they were talking about making hash with a clothes iron. So I went home, hit the Google fairly hard, and as is usually the case, I had actually seen it before but just knew it by another name.
Back in the day my dealer’s dealer had an old iron press that was used for putting lettering on t-shirts. Anyone who went to custom t-shirt stores in the 1980’s and got letters on shirts for little leagues or whatever know what I’m talking about. I never watched him from start to finish, but I knew that he used that press to make some pretty killer hash. I didn’t consume it all that often because he was fairly stingy with it, but we all called it ‘pressed hash’ because of the process.
Rosin Tech (or also rosin technology as I’ve seen it named online) is built off of that same principle, but often using a hair straightener. Rosin Tech is fairly straight forward, both how it’s made and what it is. A great explanation I found was on Medical Jane:
Recently the rosin technique has been gaining a lot of traction in the cannabis industry as it is a simple and affordable way to produce a quality product, within seconds. This simple technique separates the resin from the plant material by using heat and pressure. The yields are much similar to other extraction techniques, ranging between 10-15% with flower and even more with dry sift/kief.
I found a great video that shows how to make Rosin Tech at home using a hair straightener (commonly referred to as a flat iron). I found a bunch of step by step picture tutorials too, but video explains it so much easier and faster:
The rise in popularity of Rosin Tech, and the spread of the knowledge of how easy it is to make, has created some fears within the concentrate manufacturing community. I found the following quote on Vice that I think sums up those fears:
“Rosin Tech is already quite disruptive to the small time processing of BHO,” (Jeff) Church told me. “The large producers are heavily invested in BHO, and will therefore continue making it for a while, but the small guys that open blast a quarter ounce of weed in their backyard would much rather press Rosin in a matter of seconds. Meanwhile, most larger BHO makers have at least privately admitted that Rosin is the killer new extraction method, and many have even started making it for their own head stash.”
I personally think that those fears are unfounded (to be fair, I’m just a consumer, not a manufacturer). Rosin Tech is very easy to make, but it also takes quite a bit of pre-run to get a small amount of finished product. Making your own solvent-less concentrates seems super easy, and is if you just want a hit or two. But if you are consuming dabs on a large scale, than you are probably like me and you would rather just buy a bulk amount and not have to constantly be on the verge of running out of product.
With that being said, I think there will definitely be a demand for large-scale produced Rosin Tech, and concentrate makers should keep that in mind. A lot of consumers like solvent-less hash versus BHO or CO2 oil because they would rather avoid solvents altogether. Properly purged solvent hash does not pose any risk to the user as far as any solvent left behind. With that being said, consumers want what they want. So if there is a demand, entrepreneurs will always be there to fill the supply void. I expect Rosin Tech press companies, which I’m starting to get e-mails from almost daily (no, I don’t want to buy one, leave me alone! P.S. – send me some samples of what the press can produce…), to be very popular going forward. I’d be curious to know how prices for a Rosin Tech press compare to a just-as-good, used T-shirt letter press…