You may have read or heard the hottest new concentrate on the block, rosin, and perhaps wanted to dig deeper into what it actually is & get some questions you have about the topic answered. Well, you've found the ultimate resource on the Internet on everything you need to know about rosin.
In this post, we'll cover what exactly rosin is, how to make rosin, what variables affect the quality of your rosin, and finally, the best instruments & tools to make rosin out of.
What is Rosin?
Rosin is the process of extracting the oils that give a cannabis plant its unique taste and smell by using heat and pressure.
The whole process is fairly simple and does not require the use of any foreign substances, unlike other methods that use butane and/or propane.
As you can imagine, since Rosin does not require the use of any other solvents or substances to produce, the final product is very potent, pure and tastes & smells exactly like the strain that it was extracted from.
There's a very good reason why rosin is gaining rapid popularity and why it's poised to take over the extracts market
What is a Rosin Press?
A rosin press is a machine that uses a pair of heated plates to press with enough pressure any cannabis material, such as buds, keif, or hash, which causes the cannabinoids and terpenes to seep out in an oily form called rosin.
Rosin gained popularity with its solventless yet easy extraction process. With the help of micron filtration bags, you get rosin in a matter of minutes with a rosin press.
How Do You Make Rosin?
Making rosin is very simple because it only requires minimal equipment and minimal investment. You can produce rosin at home and put together a rig for less than $500 or buy one from a reputable brand for about the same cost.
- A rosin press
- Choice of starting Material (this can be cannabis flowers, bubble hash, or kief)
- Rosin filter extraction bags
- Parchment paper (unbleached, if possible)
There are three only three variables that go into play that determines the quality of the rosin produced: heat (temperature), pressure and time.
A brief word of caution: not all strains produce rosin equally. Some strains are known for producing more rosin, while some strains barely produce any rosin at all.
You can press flowers, bubble hash, kief, or even high-quality trim but each material will give you different yields.
What Yields Can You Expect?
- Trim: 3% - 8%
- Shake: 8% - 15%
- Flower: 15% - 30%
- Kief / Dry Sift: 30% - 60%+
- Bubble Hash / Hash: 30% - 70%+
*Figures are rough estimates
Pressing flowers will give you the best quality rosin but not necessarily the best yields. Generally, strains that are frostier on the inside when you break the bud in the middle are the best ones for making rosin.
When pressing flowers, try to go with the smaller nugs since they have more surface area, the more surface area means more travel for the rosin as it is being pressed.
Pressing kief or hash, on the other hand, will give you great quality and decent yields.
Temperature is key to making good rosin! A good rule of thumb to remember is:
Lower temperatures (190°F- 220°F) = more flavor/terpenes, less yield, end material is more stable (butter-like/honey consistency
Higher temperatures (220°F- 250°F) = less flavor/terpenes, more yield, end material is less stable (sap-like consistency)
Bearing these in mind, if your press is more than capable of delivering the right pressure, we don't recommend you going higher than 250°F.
While it's tempting to go out to build or buy a rosin press with the highest capacity, science has shown that higher pressure does not necessarily equate to higher yields.
Sometimes the higher pressure can, in fact, produce less desirable results because the increase in pressure actually forces less desirable materials such as lipids and other fine particles into your rosin.
Our friends at Pure Pressure broke the science down to a tee on this on their blog if you want to read more about it.
The time it takes to produce rosin varies depending on the material, a strain that you’re using and if there’s enough pressure
|Good Quality Sift/Bubble||150°F-190°F||20-60 seconds|
|Average to Low-Quality Sift/Bubble||180°F-220°F||20-60 seconds|
Types of Rosin Press
There are different types of rosin presses in the market; you've got your DIY heat plate kits, hydraulic presses, manual presses, variable-hydraulic presses, pneumatic presses, and finally, electric rosin presses.
Here are a few guiding questions to ask yourself to help you determine which rosin press you should buy:
- Will you be using this for personal or commercial purposes?
- How much demand will you need out of this press?
- How important is space for you?
- Do you need something that is portable?
- Would you mind buying extra accessories for the press? (An air compressor and perhaps valves for pneumatic presses).
Without further ado, let's dive into the extensive world of rosin presses.
DIY Heat Plate Kits
As the name suggests, these heat plate kits are typically used when putting together your own rosin press. Putting together your own rosin press is simple and typically involves buying a 10-ton or 20-ton hydraulic shop press and rigging it with ready-made heat plates, heaters and a controller to control the heat on the plates.
If you are interested in putting together your own rosin press, we wrote a post about it and put together different configurations where you can spend as little as $300 for your very own rosin press.
Manual Rosin Press
What's not to love about a simple, hand-crank, hand-powered rosin press that requires nothing but elbow grease to produce rosin?! Typically, manual rosin presses are operated using a pull-down lever or through a twist-style lever to apply pressure onto the plates as you press.
Hydraulic Rosin Presses
Hydraulic rosin presses are primarily made up of a hydraulic cylinder in order to produce the pressing force needed to apply enough pressure to make rosin. Having enough pressure especially when working with more material is crucial in order to achieve the highest yields. This is why most of the rosin presses that have the highest pressure outputs are hydraulic.
On one end of the spectrum, hydraulic rosin presses are powered using a hand crank to apply the pressure to the plates. However, on the other end, you have your variable-hydraulic rosin presses that has the ability to power the internal hydraulic cylinder using an external pump. These external pumps are typically operated using an air compressor or electrically controlled, though it is also common to see external hand or foot pumps.
Variable-Hydraulic Rosin Press
The Sasquash M2 and Triminator TRP stack are both variable-hydraulic rosin presses internally powered by a hydraulic cylinder while externally powered through a pneumatic foot pump or through a manual hand pump.
Pneumatic Rosin Presses
A pneumatic rosin press is powered by an air compressor. With an air compressor, it's literally as simple as pushing a button and you can even increase pressure in small but precise increments (if the press is equipped to do this.).
A lot of commercial-scale producers love using pneumatic presses because of the accuracy, consistency, and rigidity of these units. They do, however, require an external air compressor to run, which may not be the quietest unit to operate.
Electric Rosin Presses
Electric rosin presses are fairly new to the market but are gaining rapid adoption and popularity. It's obvious to see why because electric rosin presses don't require any compressors or external pumps to function. All you need is an electrical outlet and you're good for extraction.
There’s not much downside to electric presses because they’re able to output enough pressure to produce rosin. They’re also small, compact and portable. They’re also very quiet—a very popular choice for people who came from DIY setups who want a reliable press. It’s also very popular among prosumers and commercial extractors having been tested to run between 6 to 8 hours at a time without any problems.
What's the Best Rosin Press to Buy?
Generally speaking, the examples of rosin presses we provided under each category are all easy & popular recommendations, so you can't go wrong with any of them. But we also understand that there are several options and considerations to choose from, more than what we could write on this post! So, we have written another post dedicated to helping you find the best rosin press to buy under each type or budget!
We hope this guide had been valuable to you in not only knowing how to make rosin but in helping you make the right decision in choosing your press.
If you have any questions, you can feel free to write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for reading our guide to making rosin.