The entourage effect is a way of describing how there are compounds other than THC in cannabis that can change the effects of what we experience using cannabis (such as terpenes or numerous less well-known cannabinoids). THC by itself has certain effects, but combining it with CBD, for example, can reduce certain negative effects some people experience with cannabis. We’re still learning what all plays a part in what makes good weed, but we definitely know that it’s not just up to THC. This is relevant to our test because Bubble Hash seems to grab a few more friends into its entourage when it’s being made.
Dry-Ice Hash is just trichomes; if you look at them really close, you can tell there’s nothing else there. On the other hand, Bubble Hash just comes out different. It’s possible that there’s a water-soluble compound that gets added in, or it could just be the structure of the hash itself. Either way, after some lengthy testing, Nebula and I fully agree that Bubble Hash just plain feels stronger. All this talk about hash has reminded me of how much I love each type. Before I render a final judgment on who wins the showdown, let me make a case for why each one deserves to be in your house. Bubble Hash: Old-school cool with some great potency. A little Bubble Hash goes a long way, and it’s one of the best ways to use up your trim.
Dry-Ice Hash: It’s good, easy, and you get a lot of it. Bubble Hash brings so much perceived potency that it should almost be an automatic win. It’s insanely easy to make and it’s just as fun to make as it is easy. Dry-Ice Hash might not feel as potent per gram as Bubble Hash, but it’ll get the job done and you get a lot each time you make it. It’s less messy to make Dry-Ice Hash, and since dry-ice sublimates (turns from solid directly into a gas) nothing gets wet and your hash is ready to use as soon as you collect it. As long as you’re careful with the dry-ice, making Dry-Ice Hash is almost too good of a deal! Still, if you learn to grow enough weed, you can always just have both… Bubble hash: Fresh-frozen vs dry flowers. In this article, we will be examining and comparing the two most popular approaches to making ice water hash, bubble hash or Ice-O-Lator from cannabis buds: In the first two extractions, we will be using fresh-frozen material to make the hash, while the second two extractions will be carried out using dried, cured flowers . The goal of this experiment is to examine the differences in both yield and quality between these two approaches and determine the pros and cons, as each one has its advocates and detractors. Many hash-makers claim that processing fresh-frozen plant material offers greater yields and higher terpene content , while others maintain that using dried material results in a more stable and longer-lasting product , less prone to degradation over time. The fresh-frozen approach can also be useful if you don't have sufficient time or space to hang and dry your plants, but dried flowers will occupy less volume in the freezer than fresh-frozen material, being less bulky and heavy. To make sure that the comparison between the two different extraction methods is as fair and even-handed as possible, the flowers we will be comparing are from the same plants, two different phenotypes of the variety R-Kiem from Spanish seed bank R-Kiem Seeds, specialists in breeding genetics highly suitable for extractions. Each plant was processed separately both in its dried and its fresh-frozen form, meaning a total of four different extractions for comparison purposes. Both plants were grown outdoors in full sun and the flowers were collected when fully mature toward the end of October. At harvest time, approximately half of each plant was trimmed and frozen immediately while the other half of each plant was trimmed and hung to dry slowly in the dark at 50-60% RH/13ºC over the course of a month. Once dry, the buds were transferred to ziplock bags and stored in the freezer for another month before processing. The same equipment and techniques are used when processing fresh-frozen or dried material, the only difference being that dried flowers will need to be rehydrated before starting the extraction . This is to ensure a cleaner end product, avoiding any contamination of the hash by plant debris that could result from agitating dry and brittle flowers. It's usually enough to let the material soak in ice-cold water for around 20-30 minutes before proceeding with the extraction process. Here we'll just share a few details of the extraction, but for a much more in-depth guide on making your own bubble hash, read our other article on the subject: How to make ice water hash. In this case, the material was processed in a medium-sized portable washing machine , but smaller and larger machines are available depending on your need. Hand-stirring in a bucket is a perfectly viable option for smaller quantities or if you don't have a washing machine. Various types of quality and sizes of filter bags are available for making hash, but for this project we used a 5-bag set of Pure Extract Bags to filter the water and separate the vegetable matter (220) and the different sizes of trichome heads by micron size from (160>120>73>25). The use of a 220 micron zip-close work bag inside the machine can be a useful idea to save time and mess, while some may prefer to wash the material loose, thus allowing it to circulate freely in the water. It's a personal choice and experience will show which works best for you.
For each of the four extractions, we carried out multiple washes in order to separate the maximum amount of resin from the material; first we ran the washing machine for three minutes before draining, separating and collecting the trichome heads, next we washed for six minutes , then nine , 12 and finally 15 minutes each for the last few washes, until the temperature of the water rose above 1ºC and the quality and quantity of the resin collected visibly declined and we decided further extraction wouldn't yield much of any worth. After collection, even at an ambient temperature of 10ºC the resin (in particular that of the fresh-frozen material) was far too sticky too break up for drying, so it was transferred to the freezer for a few days to harden it before we micro-planed (grated) it into a powder, thus facilitating drying, which took place in a fridge over the course of two weeks .
After another week in a relatively dry, cool room (50%RH/10ºC), the hash was collected for storage in glass jars , the ideal moment to weigh, evaluate and compare the results of each of the different extractions. While we were unable to weigh the now dry buds while they were still in their freshly cut state, as a general rule fresh material will lose around 70-75% of its weight in moisture as it dries. So, with this experiment, we can expect the hash yield to reflect this, with dried buds giving a higher yield percentage by weight than the fresh-frozen material. This theory was proved to be correct once the dried hash samples were weighed and recorded, as illustrated in this chart, which shows a clear difference in yield between the fresh-frozen and dry material , with the dried flowers delivering approximately twice the return by weight. However, by adjusting the results to take into account the weight of water lost by drying the buds, we can get a much clearer and more balanced idea of the actual return obtained from the material used.