With the legalization of hemp cultivation, we should see a rise in hemp flowers available for home use. Since the popularity of CBD oil has exploded, naturally more people will be looking for an easy way to extract the oil at home. Most people will find the rosin extraction method is enough to meet their needs. Hemp Rosin is the oil, resin or sap extracted from the hemp plant's flowers. The extraction process relies on heat and pressure to squeeze the rosin from resinous hemp flowers. Simply put, the heat is used to make the terpene filled plant's resin more viscous allowing it to flow from the material by applying a reasonable amount of pressure. Properly harvested and stored hemp flowers have resins that are rich in terpenes.
Terpenes are volatile and will quickly evaporate under higher temperatures, so it's important to keep the temperature low when pressing rosin. How low? Well, that's hard to say because it'll change depending on your starting material. We've found temperatures between 140-240 work best for most materials. A lower temperature will allow you to extract rosin rich in terpenes, but your yield will suffer due to the oils in the material being less viscous than that of material pressed at a higher temperature. So as you raise your temperature, you'll yield more oil from the material, but you'll also quickly lose a lot of the terpenes leaving you with a less desirable end product. So it's best to test different temperatures to find the sweet spot for your material. No matter what temperature you use, you'll need adequate pressure to yield well. A minimum of 500psi over the material is required to achieve good results.
Currently, there's several ready to use presses available for rosin extraction. These rosin presses can range in size, but some of the most common you'll see is 2,5,10 and 20ton. You'll find some are operated manually, while others require an air compressor. With each brand, you'll find different bells or whistles their rosin press offers. Some have programmable settings to control temperature, pressure, time of each press while others are operated by just pushing a button. The prices can vary widely on ready to use rosin presses. On the low end, you can expect to pay $300 for a basic 2ton rosin press and up to 10K for a 20ton rosin press with all the bell and whistles. No matter what rosin press you choose the overall extraction process will be the same, low temps and high pressure. That's it, nothing more. The basics of every rosin press will remain the same, a shop press or bottle jack fitted with heated aluminum plates. With very little work you can easily assemble a 10 or 20ton DIY rosin press that can extract rosin as efficiently as any of the big name, ready to use rosin presses. Also, when you compare the cost of a DIY rosin press to a ready to use rosin press, the value of a DIY rosin press is unbeatable. The cost of a DIY rosin press will depend on the amount you need to process. If you're pressing a reasonable amount, a 10Ton press with a 3x5 rosin plate will more than enough. For someone more on the commercial scale, a 20Ton press fitted with a 4x7 rosin press plate kit will give you the pressure needed over a larger surface area. On average, you can expect to pay $350 for a 10Ton, 3x5 Rosin plate setup and around $550 for a 20Ton, 4x7 Rosin Plate setup. With such a low start-up cost, a commercial extractor can easily put ten DIY rosin presses into production for the cost of one high end, ready to use rosin press.
Since pressure plays a huge role in yield, it's important to maximize your rosin press's efficiency by compacting the material's surface area you're pressing. You can do this with pollen press, rosin pre-press mold or by hand. This step is even more important if you're using a smaller setup like a 2Ton arbor press with 3x5 rosin press plates. With a smaller setup like this, the maximum amount of pressure you'll see is just over 260 pounds per square inch if you place material over the entire surface area of 15 square inches. By minimizing the material's surface area to 4 square inches, you'd see 1000psi over that material. The more you can minimize the material; the more pressure you can apply. With the use of a rosin pre-press mold, you can achieve a consistent, compact surface area that increases the efficiency of your rosin press, big or small. A rosin pre-press mold will also allow you to press more material at one time making it an essential piece for those looking to extract large amounts. While it's possible to press some material bare with no filtration, we don't recommend it if you want a more refined end product. For a cleaner end product, you should place all material in a mesh rosin filter bag. When you pair our rosin filter bag with our rosin pre-press mold, it's possible to fit triple the amount of starting material in the rosin filter bag than just hand packing alone. Hand packing rosin filters seem to result in the filter bursting because the material is uneven or overfilled. The best way to fill your rosin filters is with our slip tube method. Using the slip method will help you avoid bursting your rosin filters by having them filled evenly. Learn more about the slip method here.
The DIY rosin press setup you choose will depend on your extraction needs. Below you'll find our general recommendations setups for our rosin press plate kits. Please understand these are just recommendations. Our rosin press plates are compatible with most shop presses up to 20Ton, so you have a little freedom when choosing a DIY setup.
Our Rosin Press Plate Kit comes with the following.
1-5 Grams of dried plant material
For personal amounts or to test the rosin extraction method, it's possible to use the hair straightener and bar clamp to achieve great results. If you've never extracted rosin, we recommend trying this method first to get an idea of the process. Some people choose to stick with this method because they find it enough to meet their extraction needs. (This method is not recommended for long term use as the hair straightener will tend to crack from the pressure needed for rosin extraction.)
5-10 Grams of dried plant material
For small amounts around 5-10 grams a press, you may find a 2Ton Arbor Press equipped with our 3x5 rosin press plate kit enough to meet your needs. With this DIY Rosin Press, you'll want to have a rosin pre-press on hand to help with compacting your starting material. A rosin pre-press will help you maximize pressure by reducing the surface area you're pressing. We've found the 2.5x2.5 Rosin pre-press works best with this setup. Though small, you shouldn't underestimate the Arbor rosin press. When paired with the 2.5x2.5 rosin pre-press, which creates a 4 square inch surface area this press can exert up to 1000psi over that material.
10-15 Grams of dried plant material
When you need to press moderate amounts, around 10-15 grams most customers choose a 10Ton benchtop press fitted with our 3x5 rosin press plate kit. This 10Ton DIY rosin press seems to be a favorite of those looking towards a larger press but doesn't have the room a larger setup may require. Depending on the brand, you'll find some 10Ton benchtop presses come with a pressure gauge. The pressure gauge can be super helpful when working with different materials. When paired with the 2x4 rosin pre-press mold, which creates around a 6 square inch surface area, the 10Ton benchtop DIY rosin press can produce up to 2500psi over that material.
15-30 Grams of dried plant material
When pressing large amounts between 15-30 grams per press, you may find you'll need more pressure. For amounts like this, a 20Ton Shop Press equipped with our 4x7 rosin press plate kit will be enough to meet your needs. When paired with the 3x5 rosin pre-press, which creates a surface area a little over 10 square inches this press can exert up to 4000psi over that material. There's some debate on wither a 20Ton DIY Rosin Press is overkill. No matter what press you choose you'll be in control of the pressure. Just because its capable of 20ton doesn't mean you need to max it out. If you're still concerned, it's possible to use the 4x7 rosin press plates on a 10 or 12Ton shop press and achieve great results.