I began my ice-water hash making 12 years ago, with big jars full of ice-water and shake. This worked, to my surprise, although getting the water/plant matter off the top without also loosing the hash was hard. High school adventures at its best.
Fast forward to college, and I was really into making dry screen concentrate (kif), on account of the numerous pounds that came and went. I had my mom's silk screen that I found at my grandma's. With that I was making blonde kif, melt depended on quality of bud, of course.
Fast forward again and I got a few of Bubbleman's bubblebags. At first we agitated our ice-water and trim by hand. I say "we" because it took two people to keep the agitation going how I wanted. We used big wooded spoons. The hash was amazing. Subcool of TGA Genetics uses a silver spoon and hand mixes for only three minutes to make his highest grade "keeper only" bubble.
Then I was using the power drill/5 gallon bucket method. When using the drill method you have one major option, and that is the attachment. Many prefer to use paint mixers, but I have always found those to chop up the plant way too much. I prefer extra large wooden spoons. These spoons fit right into the end of power drills. Although they are not as long as paint mixers (still have to keep the drill dry) they are much more gentle on the trim, resulting in higher quality ice-water extract.
The machine has allowed me to step it up a whole level in terms of production. I also find they perform the perfect kind of agitation for a clean yet efficient separation. The huge benefit is that you don't have to do the work. Once you get used to loading the machine and bag you will make hash without much effort at all. Quality ice-water extract easily tests over 50% THC. The highest grade ice water hashes have been labeled "solventless wax", by Extract Essential's hashmaster Nikka T, to reflect the purity and strength of the purest of the pure ice-water extract.
– I load the machine with 20 lbs of ice to begin.
– Then I place the work bag on top of that.
– In the work bag goes the trim and ice.
– Layered ice/trim/ice. I like to run about half and half, and would love to hear what you guys do for this step.
– Fill the work bag 3/4 or less. And about half full if using dry trim, as it will expand when rehydrated.
– Double knot the bag closed, or more, worst mess ever if it opens.
– Add more ice, on top and the sides of the work bag.
– Do not fill the machine too much or the separation will not be efficient. Leave at least 6 inches at the top.
– Sometimes I let it sit at this point, if the trim is not already frozen.
– Then add water, not enough to see it, that is the trick. You will have enough water just before you see it Rize up through the ice.
– Let it soak, just a little if wet/frozen trim. 20+ minutes for dry trim.
– Agitate 20-30 minutes, depends on many factors. I usually just watch an episode of the Simpsons and call it good.
– Drain… just watch the video 🙂 if you have not already.
This 15 minute youtube video I made covers the steps from loading the hash machine, to using bubble bags, to separating/washing/collecting the trichome heads. (warning: I get so baked I say trichrome instead of trichomes… (8(l) d'oh)
To allow my wet hash to dry:
1) I lay it out as-is overnight, sometimes 24 hours if it is cold out.
2) I grate it to a sand texture with my micro-plane, used ONLY for this purpose. Consider this a disposable tool that needs to be replaced if you are a big hash maker. They can't be sharpened like knives/scissors.
3) I lay this wet sandy bubble hash out on a baking sheet used ONLY for this purpose. I use a non-stick, so no metal for the next step.
4) I let it slowly dry, covered with a silk screen, and occasionally 'cut' it up with a card to let it dry from all sides.
5) As soon as it is dry it goes into my hash curing jar.
Picture 1 – 4: Freshly collected bubble hash. STILL VERY WET.
Picture 5: Breaking up the still wet hash so it will dry.
Picture 6-9: Allowing the hash to dry. Crumbled is drying. Two patties are wet and ready to be grated.
Picture 10 – 15: dried and curing hash.
– Wrap the machine with some kind of insulation. Crucial design flaw. An easy fix is to wrap your machine with one of those car window sun blocks, the shiny 'metal' looking ones.
– Temperature of tap water varies greatly, as I learned from a brewer. Something to keep in mind for several reasons.
– Store bought ice sucks. I have a whole article on that, soon to be posted.
– Temperature of the air affects the overall efficiency. Bubble early or late when it is hot out. Or bubble indoors and keep it cool.
– NEVER overfill the work bag, worst move ever. 3/4 full or less.
– The goal is to perform the spinning agitation at as cold of a temperature as possible. Start with ice in the machine, fill the bag with layers of ice/trim, zip and double knot, more ice. Now add water, but only about half way up. Next, turn the machine on, then slowly add more water until the contents barely begin to spin. You can help the bag find it's home in the ice/water mixture and the machine does the rest.
– Don't be afraid to take the screw out that holds the spinning disk in place. Clean down there once and a while.
See Image #16 for a fully loaded ice-water hashmachine.
Making a simple unit to use in conjunction with your hash machine is easy.
You will need:
Two 5 gallon buckets
Drill with a large bit
One hydro table drain, 3/4" or bigger needed.
Hose to match your hydro drain, length depends on how far you far from the door.
1) Drill many holes in the bottom of one bucket.
2) Drill a hole in the bottom of the other bucket to insert the hydro table drain. I use a 1 7/16" hole saw. They usually sell conical drill bits just for this purpose at grow stores.
3) Sand the rough edges of the large hole, then insert the hydro drain and twist until tight.
4) Hook up your tubing to your hydro drain. Circle clamps make sure no leaks, if you bubble indoors like I do!
5) Send the tubing down through the top of the crate, then out the side. The 5 gallon bucket should sit right in the middle of the crate for safety.
6) You are done, congrats, wasn't that simple?
The bucket full of holes sits in the drain bucket. The bags go inside, small to large. The water drains away, making the whole process, when coupled with the XL, super easy.