As anyone who loves cannabis knows, concentrates and extracts are taking the market by storm, and no product has a greater dabbing appeal than rosin. Rosin is a solventless cannabis concentrate that is extracted using only heat and pressure, as opposed to harsh solvents such as butane or propane. Rosin is distinctly different from ice water hash, another popular solventless concentrate, in that no water or ice are used, and still can have a budder or shatter texture. Producing rosin is much more simple, and more importantly, significantly safer, than BHO, PHO or any at-home solvent based extractions which are notoriously flammable. Rosin can be extracted and made into any number of desirable concentrate textures, such as shatter, wax, budder, sugar, and more. Some talented extraction artists are even making live rosin!
While pressing rosin was originally discovered and performed with hair straighteners, people realized very quickly what an opportunity it is and the technology has advanced very quickly as a result. Multiple companies are now selling rosin machines and presses that have been specifically designed for the purpose. Simply put, a rosin press is a piece of equipment that applies heat and pressure to cannabis flower, kief, dry sift, hash, or trim to make an instantly dabbable product. There is no purging or vacuum ovens required for rosin, it’s ready to be enjoyed immediately after squishing. Unfortunately, many of the rosin presses that are available for sale are manufactured in China and are of a very low quality. Many businesses are simply relabeling cheap Chinese t-shirt presses and other shop presses by calling them a “rosin press”. These inefficient presses provide poor pressure and heat control, thus ensuring that you waste a significant amount of material making any rosin at all.
The price range on rosin presses starts around couple hundred dollars and goes well into the many thousands, depending on where they it was made, how big it is, how much pressure it offers, and how big the heat plates are, among other factors. Principally, rosin presses are made in two different styles, either hydraulic, or pneumatic. There are also hand-pump presses, heat plate kits that attach to an arbor press, and any number of other pressure-based shop applications that are used to make rosin. Depending on your budget and how much rosin you are planning to make will determine which one you end up purchasing, or you can make your own if you’re feeling crafty like many people have.
Hydraulic presses are the most common type of rosin press and work by pressurizing oil within a hydraulic cylinder, thus descending the heat plates and applying pressure to the material. Hydraulic rosin machines are frequently very loud and can be prone to actually releasing microscopic amounts of machine oil into your rosin, which can defeat the purpose of trying to make a solventless concentrate in the first place! Many shop presses operate hydraulically to which heat plates are simply mounted or attached. Pneumatic rosin presses on the other hand use only compressed air to apply pressure, although cheaper pneumatic cylinders require oiling and maintenance. In either scenario, the amount of pressure typically offered is either 1 ton, 2 ton, 5 tons, 10 tons, 12 tons, 20 tons, or more. There are even some presses out there offering 50 tons of pressure. As with all things, you get what you pay for, so if you want to invest in a quality rosin press, it’s worth paying a little extra for one that will go the distance.
Given all of the options and variations a rosin press can come in, it can get a little confusing, especially if you’re looking for a turnkey solution to making terrific rosin. Thankfully, there are premium options out there to get a rosin press that will maximize your yield, quality, and give you complete control over the entire process. The company that we believe is leading the industry is PurePressure, which is based in Denver, Colorado, the mecca of modern cannabis. PurePressure manufactures every rosin press they sell at its warehouse from top quality components, nearly all of which are sourced from the United States. It’s critical to ensure that you’re getting even heat distribution with your heat plates, as well as plenty of pressure to get the maximum yield. PurePressure’s flagship rosin press, the Pikes Peak, offers both in spades. For the heat platens, the Pikes Peak features in-house machined 100% aluminum heat plates, each with its own thermocoupler, that provide superior heating. Operating pneumatically, each cylinder, which is oil-less and maintenance-free, is custom fabricated in Florida and puts down 5 tons of pressure with only 120 psi of compressed air. The Pikes Peak rosin press also features custom written software that allows the user to control every aspect of its operation, taking the guess workout out of squishing rosin.
If you’re in the market for a rosin press, there are a lot of factors to consider, but there has never been a better time to get started. Rosin as an extracted concentrate is highly desirable and provides a superior dabbing experience, free of any residual solvents. Making rosin is also very affordable compared to the $50,000+ entry level BHO closed loop systems available, and also significantly safer, all while taking up a lot less room. It’s a no brainer. With the cannabis industry growing as fast as it is, and with many new states coming online in 2017 and 2018, getting started with extracting now will yield major dividends in the future. To take Colorado for example, there was a 100%+ boost in concentrate sales between 2015 and 2016, and we expect other maturing markets to follow suit. Suffice to say, cannabis concentrates the product of the future because they can be vaped, dabbed, smoked, and enjoyed very easily in any number of situations. So when you’re considering what press to get, make sure to consider how much more rosin you can make in the long run with a quality press, as well as buying equipment that was assembled in the United States with top notch components.