Creative math question

This is extract disolved first in methanol then dumped into hexane in prep for last months lab.

Same flask now but with water added. Cannabinoids are driven into the hexane above and the terps into the lower solution of methanol and water. It occurs instantly with the addition of water.

This is the concept for next months lab. (The input at future4200 has been an exceptional and mentally challenging experience. I love the mentally challenging life I lead so decided to solicite some help from folks like me. :thinking:)

Lets say we have two seperation flasks. They are arranged one over the top of the other and the catch flask is large enough to transfer from the bottom flask back to the top flask. Lets call this the “rig”. “Compound” means shatter, wax, crumble, or other 420 extraction of like kind.

Now for math. All are assumptions based on multiple labs but in no way reflect my beliefs about absolute precision. For the math though assume these numbers and properties. Remember this is think tank mode so this is presumptive reasoning.

  1. The compound is made up of waxes, coloring compounds (chlorophyl and like), terpenes, and a cannabinoid chain both pre and post D9 THC. It is made up of nothing else except these things for this math but they are in unknowable ratios in the starting crude.

  2. Three solvents are used. Assumption two is that the three solvents are each single pure solvents. The word “hexane” in this assumption means a single solvent (not a group as is the case). The word “methanol” means a solvent at least 99.95% pure before first exposure to air from the container. The word “water” means tap water and is in this example considered a single pure solvent.

  3. Methanol will not mix into solution with hexane. Water will not mix into solution with hexane. Water and methanol will mix into solution with each other readily. Methanol and water in any ratio will seperate to the bottom of a sep flask when added to hexane. This is assumption 3.

  4. Methanol will not disolve wax. Water will not disolve wax. Hexane disolves wax readily.

  5. Methanol absorbs THC much better than hexane. Hexane absorbs THC much better than 93% methanol and 7% water in solution. “Much better” is defined here as 90%+ better.

  6. Hexane is 50% better at absorbing coloring agents than methanol and becomes progressively better as water is added to the methanol. Hexane is 100% better at absorbing chlorophyl than a solution of 50% methanol to 50% water by volume.

  7. Hexane is good at absorbing terpenes. Methanol is good at absorbing terpenes. Water is poor at absorbing terpenes. Methanol with at least 10% water in solution is 99% better at absorbing terpenes than either hexane or water.


With the rig and an ample supply of all three solvents what is closest you think you could come in your rig to achieving THC chain of compounds seperation from the other components?
Imagine a process that dewaxes, de terpenes, and rids chlorophyls all at 90%+ efficiency but no heat input. Is it possible?

How would you run the rig given the math?


First off, nice rig. Not sure what company but the glass looks cool.

Second, I am not sure what math you means. A formula could be derived using all the variables but in this equation the only knowables that I see are total extract mass, total solvent and mass of solvent fractions. I would by no means, valuing my sanity, attempt to form an equation around the migration of these participants into the respective solvents as affinities are mostly unknowns, with the exception of some of the cannabinoids.

Third, point number 6. Das chlorophyll. The more I learn, the less I like it. Maybe you could have UV exposure causing degradation. The color change (this is a guess, want to clearly state this as to avoid upsetting anyone) I am thinking indicates release of the Mg 2+. This gives you a nicely polar metal ion and a degradation product that should have a -2 charge. Depending on which chlorphyll you may or may not be retaining that non-polar tail. Should be able to cause migration. This still leaves you a wad of dissolved fats and waxes in your hexane, oh and terps.
Next, using sep funnel, plastic bag, whatever separate your fractions.
Strip hexane off your goodies fraction.
Re-dissolve in ethanol, winterize. Yummy.

I’m struggling with the terpene fractions. I keep wanting to say fractional distillation. As to a man with a hammer all problems are nails, also to a man with a fractional still will see lovely fractions in everything :slight_smile:

Oh crap, I just saw the you not wanting terps? That ends this right at winterization I would think.

Is good?

1 Like
  1. Wash a methanol/THCa rich “compound” with heptane, the Cannabinoids will end up in the Heptane after enough is flushed through.
  2. This leaves a segment of water soluble impurities in the methanol, which is then set aside.
  3. The heptane solution is then washed once with pH 4 saline, then with enough pH 13 water to extract all the THCa.
  4. Separate heptane off, then crash THCa from water with citric acid.
  5. Wash water solution with fresh volume of heptane, separate off water
  6. Recover Heptane in manner conducive to harvesting crystals

I used IPA but I assume methanol would work, and heptane vs hexane, and I played around with my water using acids, bases, and salt, but I think it’s meets the criteria somewhat? If your situation allows for modifying the water then I can tell you it works.

Interesting thing to note, CBDa tends to not like water until the pH is a little higher.


Use distilled water for most lab thing including cleaning if you can. Metal complexes are wack and can oxidize, reduce, or catalyze stuff.

I take it this was the start of what you’ve been experimenting with on Instagram? Are your results posted in here somewhere yet or are you still refining it?

ODear @Beaker
Playing around . With your hexane methanol formula today Funny thing happend d

I dissolved oil in hexane 1;1
Did saline wash acidic and base k once content i pourd in methanol
At oil hexane to methanol 1;2
Aded 3 % water and Now seperation Happend but with the layer hexane on the botom
Cannabinoids jumped in the methanol
But not So

So the hexane was saturated with oil
And heavier than the methanol
On the 2 liters methanoll i recooverd 50 gr of cannabinoids
Is iT posssible that i extracrted one. Particular cannabinoid ?
I send If. To the lab once all is done to compare but Whats your thought ?