In the world of cannabis concentrates, the distillate has one of the highest percentages of THC. BHO, PHO or CO2 concentrates go through the distillation process to remove all solvents and contaminants. Be warned, a distillate can have a potency of up to 99%. So if you’re not ready for a super potent dab, distillates will knock you out. We’ll go over how they’re made and everything you need to know about the distillation process.
Cannabis Distillate 101
So what makes a cannabis distillate different from every other concentrate? The answer lies in the extraction process called “short path distillation.” The process takes your average dabs and makes them safer and stronger.
To distillate cannabis, you’ll need the proper technology including a high force vacuum. This is because cannabinoids have a very high boiling point. The pressure from vacuum allows manufacturers to distil cannabinoids at much lower temperatures.
There are less complex ways to extract distillates. However, they require higher temperatures which can degrade the final product resulting in a shorter shelf life.
According to Root Sciences, the short path distillation process is split into two parts. First, a machine cuts the terpenes and removes them from the cannabinoids. The second half of the process removes the lipids, impurities, and solvents, leaving a clear concentrate with no smell. To get an aroma and flavor terpenes would have to be re-introduced.
However, a distillate without terpenes is perfect for infusing edibles. You’ll get potency without the taste of cannabis in every bite.
Can Distillates Be Made At Home?
To make hemp or cannabis distillate at home you’ll need some hefty equipment. A wiped film evaporator is the machine with several parts that is used for short path distillation. Fortunately, Root Sciences has one that is compact enough to fit in any home. It won’t fit in a closet so you’ll have to find some space.
So, yes you can make distillates at home but it’s not going to be easy. If you want quality distillate you’ll have to invest in the proper machinery. Also, you need access to cannabis concentrates or you can make them at home. The easiest and safest way would be with a hair straightener.
Is It Free of Solvents?
So you might be wondering if cannabis distillates are considered a Solvent-free Hash Oils. Well, the starting material doesn’t have to be. You can use butane hash oil (BHO) or propane hash oil (PHO) which both typically leave residues, impurities, and leftover solvents. However, by the time it’s gone through the short path distillation process the concentrate becomes “solvent-free.”
When it comes to safety, look no further. All properly made distillates have zero parts-per-million (ppm) residual solvents left behind. They’re also easy to see through. No solvents result in the smoothest and safest hits possible.
The terpenes that were cut and removed from the cannabinoids during the short path distillation are mostly gone. So terpenes from another source would have to be used if you want the flavor to your distillate. The bright side is you get to choose what your dabs will taste like. Some connoisseurs prefer their terpenes all natural so they go for live resin or other concentrates with unaltered terpenes.
The purity and potency of a distillate are unmatched. It takes a long time to make than other concentrates. Not to mention the advanced equipment needed to make distillates makes them more expensive than other dabs. With no residual solvents, they hit smoother than most other concentrates. Dabbers should give it a shot.