I recently read, and re-read, Cannabis Alchemy, by D. Gold, after coming across it in a reply by @SkyHighLer in this post:
I love the simplicity of the method in the book, and the potential for complete extraction, and have many times in the past considered something similar, but I consistently find information suggesting that several points in the method are flawed and have been improved upon in the last 30-40 years.
Gold advises, “reducing the material to the finest powder possible,”(pg 3) prior to extraction. The following step is to reflux a solution of your pulverized material and alcohol for, “three or four hours,”(pg 8) during which time the temperatures will be, “about 212°F, but not above.”(pg 7)
I actually like the concept because of the aforementioned extraction potential, but am concerned about the obvious increase in undesirables and difficulty in refining from pulverizing, refluxing, and soxhleting to a clarity and purification on par with distillate extracted using butane or co2.
I imagine at some point the difficulty, time, and cost associated with cleaning a product outweighs the benefit of a complete extraction. Which would explain why most information suggests using material that has been broken as little as possible in order to expose the trichomes is preferred over heavily ground material and why using super-cooled ethanol is preferred over hot ethanol.
Can anyone validate or invalidate with experience or verifiable data at which point the benefit of a complete extraction is outweighed by the expense of cleaning it in regards to each the use of pulverized material, the use of hot ethanol, individually, and how the two factors relate? Can a product extracted using the methods from the book even be converted into something of high quality using household methods or does the method have to be modified?
Along the same lines of thought is the Capna Labs method, but perhaps the modernized answer to my questions. As far as I can tell the Capna Labs method is a modified version of the Cannabis Alchemy method that uses super-cooled, recirculated ethanol, to achieve a similar affect to refluxing and soxhleting and employs the use of a rotovap for the removal of the solvent step since there is no heat anywhere else in the system. Would this super cooled method still permit the material to be pulverized without extracting excessive undesirables? Could a person create a simplified household version of the Capna Labs tech?
Ultimately the benefit of their method should be reduced undesirables, but the original question relates in at what point is the efficiency of super-cooling at producing a cleaner product worth the added difficulty, cost, or lower yields of cannabinoids due to avoiding undesirables. Does the recirculation of even super-cooled ethanol, causing lengthy exposure times, still pull excessive undesirables in a similar fashion to hot ethanol?
Finally, can the products of any of these various methods be cleaned effectively with an lle, AC scrub, degum, winterization, and dcvc… maybe not in that exact order, without utilizing spd?
I tried searching the tags, “hot boil boiling ethanol Etoh alcohol cannabis alchemy” independently and combined in several variations but couldn’t find anything that seemed significant. Though I did see a large number of posts discussing the use of super-cooled ethanol to include this post:
I like the data there, but still am curious what can be accomplished with the old method, and if that can be effectively cleaned without an unnecessary increase in labor that could easier be accomplished using the newer super-cooled methods?
Sorry if this post is too long or asking too many questions all at once. I’m more than happy to clarify anything that’s unclear. If I simply overlooked some available information during my searches even some links would be greatly appreciated.