Rosin press for cbd oil

How to Make CBD Rosin: From Hemp Flower to Solventless CBD Dabs

In 2018, the Farm Bill more or less legalized hemp across the entire US, and since then, an explosion of hemp flower cultivation has resulted in some impressive looking CBD nugs. In fact, modern cannabis cultivation practices have elevated hemp flower to such a level that it can now be pressed into solventless CBD rosin, and that’s great news for medicinal cannabis users nationwide.

Here we’ll take a look at the unique aspects of pressing hemp flower, the important differences from standard cannabis rosin making, and what to expect from the process. But first, we need to clear something up.

CBD Hemp Flower: Murky Legality

Unfortunately, the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp flower in a very narrow way. Essentially, cannabis flower that contains less than 0.3 percent THC is legal for cultivation, sale, purchase, transport, possession, and use in all 50 states… But only as a cosmetic additive. Believe it or not, it’s still considered federally illegal to sell hemp products intended for human consumption.

The situation is made all the more confusing by the fact that the FDA doesn’t appear to be enforcing that legal distinction, and that’s allowed cultivators carte blanche to sell hemp flower on the open market. For residents of legal cannabis states that’s likely not an issue, as your state’s laws probably protect you, but for those living in more conservative areas and are ordering CBD hemp flower, your local law enforcement may see things a little differently. So, be careful because hemp flower is not as universally legal as those selling it would have you believe.

CBD Rosin: Starting Material

The great thing about pressing CBD hemp flower is that there are no fundamental differences to pressing high grade THC cannabis, and you can rely on all your existing rosin skills and equipment to get the job done.

As ever, the first step to creating top flight rosin is selecting quality trichome rich starting material, because the more resinous trichomes there are, the more rosin you can squeeze out the other end. So, always look for maximum trichome quantity and quality, as this tends to lead to a more successful pressing. Additionally, relative humidity plays just as important a role in CBD hemp pressing as it does with standard flower rosin, so ensure your starting material’s relative humidity is in the sweet spot between 55 and 62 percent. Boveda humidity packs prove as useful as ever in this regard.

Solventless CBD Rosin: Lower Yields

Unfortunately though, no matter how well CBD hemp flower has been cultivated, it just doesn’t possess the same quantity of resin as your typical cannabis flower. It’s therefore important to be aware that your overall yield will be noticeably lower than when pressing with standard high grade, and a 15% return is about as good as it gets currently.

The Difference When Pressing Hemp Flower

When it comes to pressing hemp flower all your standard rosin practices apply, from pre-molding, to micron filtering, and parchment paper. Nevertheless, there is one noticeable difference, and that’s the need for higher plate temperatures. The general consensus among CBD rosin makers is that hemp flower requires a little extra grunt, and that would make sense as CBD does have a higher melting point than THC.

As a jumping off point we’d recommend pressing hemp flower at 220 degrees F for 3 minutes, and adjusting from there. However, pressing CBD flower tends to produce a dark, toasty, and low yielding rosin regardless of settings, and wouldn’t be our recommended method for making CBD rosin.

CBD Hash Rosin: The Way to Go

If you’re serious about making solventless CBD rosin, then we would first recommend extracting the hemp flowers trichomes with the use of dry-sift tumblers, and making CBD hash. Pressing from hash improves rosin’s yield and quality enormously, and in this situation has one particularly useful benefit.

Pressing pure trichomes allows you to use significantly lower plate temperatures than with flower, and that makes a huge difference with CBD rosin. By pressing CBD hash, you can get down to 180 F, and that will allow you to avoid that dark toasty final product that hemp flower rosin produces. Furthermore, the boost in yields from a hash press makes the whole CBD rosin process far more worthwhile, and results in a significantly more pleasant dab.

Ultimate Rosin and Rosin Press Buying Guide (2022)

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 typical rosin production setup consists of:
  1. A rosin press
  2. Choice of starting Material (this can be cannabis flowers, bubble hash, or kief)
  3. Rosin filter extraction bags
  4. 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.

Starting Material

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

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

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.

Pressure

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.

Time

The time it takes to produce rosin varies depending on the material, a strain that you’re using and if there’s enough pressure

Use the timetable below as a starting point to determine how long you should be pressing based on your starting material.

Material Temperature Time
Flower 190°F-220°F 15-60 seconds
Good Quality Sift/Bubble 150°F-190°F 20-60 seconds
Average to Low-Quality Sift/Bubble 180°F-220°F 20-60 seconds

Which rosin press should you buy?

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 want 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.

Dulytek 3″ x 6″ Retrofit Rosin Press Kit

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

Rosinbud M1 Hand-Held Rosin Press
Dulytek DM1005
Pure Pressure Helix 3

What’s not to love about a simple, hand-crank, hand-powered rosin press that requires nothing but elbow grease to produce rosin?! Typically entry-level presses are manual presses and pressure is generated by a pull-down lever or through a twist-operation.

Hydraulic Presses

Hydraulic rosin presses use hydraulic pressure to generate the force needed to produce rosin. The force is generated through the use of a hand pump.

NugSmasher Original

Under hydraulic presses are your entry-level rosin presses which are typically manually operated and on the higher-end, you’ve got your variable-hydraulic rosin presses which are powered by an external pump.

Variable-Hydraulic Rosin Press

The Sasquash M1 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 electric foot pump.

Sasquash M1
Triminator TRP Stack

Variable-hydraulic rosin presses are, at the core, powered by a hydraulic cylinder. However, because these presses are typically larger and have more pressure, the hydraulic cylinder inside is typically controlled by an external foot pump connected to an air compressor, or an electric foot pump.

Pneumatic 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 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.

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 [email protected]

Thanks for reading our guide to making rosin.

A self-proclaimed Internet nerd who admits to spending way too much time on Reddit. When Derek isn’t spinning new content for the blog, he enjoys playing chess, social card games and relaxing. Derek is also a lover of all things social media, a self-proclaimed coffee ninja, and country music trailblazer.