Need help picking equipment..

What processing equipment would you buy if you had a pound of Gorilla Bomb bud and up to 5k US? I’m asking for a friend. He’s been growing for nearly 10 years. Making BHO with a CLS and vacuum purging. Using a nice rosin press lately to fill in the gaps on the oil rig. That CLS is only good for around 50grams per run so I’m leaning towards a quick ethanol wash using dry ice then filtering thru a Buchner filter(I’m finalizing my research lol).
I want to spend most of that money on equipment for distilling and save money for now doing the ethanol wash with dry ice as far as the extraction. Then I want to distill that solution with an alcohol distiller…and I’m just spitballing here but after this would be a rotovap or maybe a cheaper, less techy way to evaporate more ethanol out. I need help piecing this together because I know that 5k is going to be tight. Hell the vacuum is nearly 2k for one I think I need. I’m thinking SPD so maybe 1200-1500 range with cold trap etc. I don’t think I need a recirculating chiller, just a recirculating heater…right? The condenser doesn’t need to be cold during distillation but rather warm? So:

  1. I need an efficient way to make crude for distilling that doesn’t cost a ton. Would you recommend Quick Wash ethanol?
  2. What actually goes in that bottom boiling flask? Is crude just the oil leftover after evaporating the ethanol out? If I did this to a pound of bud(assume 20% thc) and assuming I’m on track with what crude is, would there be enough crude to go into a 2liter distilling setup? The videos I see look like they have 1000 ml of crude in theirs.
  3. Do I really need a recirculating chiller for distilling thc? Those things cost 2700 lol
  4. Recommend distilling set? I know AI is high AF!!

I’ve done a lot of research already, a lot of my search results led me to this forum so I created an account here. I’m hoping to get some answers or ideas that either confirm what I’ve already researched or lead to new research.

Rocco scientific for your distillation needs

man, I can’t get a break.
I can’t seem to wrap my head around anyones questions, or answers today…

why would you turn good bud into distillate?
rather than top shelf diamonds & sauce?

because the margin is better on carts and you need distillate for carts?
or because a 1lb CLS will break your budget. looks like you could get two.

if you’ve got bunk input, using ethanol and going to distilate makes sense to me. if you’re processing hemp for CBD, it makes sense too, but if you’ve got great bud, especially fresh frozen, then light hydrocarbons are hard to beat for customer appeal.

if you’ve got the terps, tossing them and buying someone else’s to add back later doesn’t make sense to me.

if you insist on distillate, then most of you budget needs to go there. so it’s fortunate you can extract with ethanol on a shoestring.


Thanks for the quick answer. I was looking at distillate because it seems like a good product for my personal use. I can vape it, dab it, wipe some on a blunt paper or eat it like it is. With the distillates(and diamond sauce) I like the idea of removing the terps. Stealth is a factor a lot of places I would vape so I don’t want any terps in it. This is all for personal use. My wife doesn’t like to combust plant matter and the alcohol tincure I make in the Magic Butter Machine is quite nasty tasting even though you only need 1/2 ml for a very good dose. The biggest factor is probably my current vape situation. I used to load up dabs on different portable vapes(those crystals would be great for this) but that shit is too tedious and time consuming to load up. Then I moved to these different kinds of modern vape tanks, RTAs etc and they all have their own problems. Leaks, little bit of a smell etc. The carts with distillate in them seems like it would be a good fit for me. A friend shared theirs with me and I loved it. Plus the fact that I could eat anything I spilled somehow appeals to me lol
This isn’t for sale so customer appeal isn’t an issue but I don’t want to fuck it up either. I was trying to move away from the butane to be honest. I can scale my current CLS up to 150g with 2 extenders I have and just run 3 batches. I’ve been blasting for years with n butane and have perfected my technique. In the end, diamonds aren’t a fit for what I’m trying to do. If they were decarbed I’d be more inclined, as it were tho…no thanks.


Will be looking into this bucket tek. Thanks for posting.

Also will check out that Rocco gear.

Thanks for the ideas, everyone!

I may have an answer for that number 1 and possibly number 4. Anybody else?

You do not need a chiller and using a cheap fish tank pump, a bucket and Sous Vide Immersion Circulator can build a make shift circulaing heater.
At 20% THC and 100% extraction efficiency 1 pound of bud will yield 90 grams of THC. Don’t get excited because you will probably be at 80% efficiency and an additional 2-5% loss making your THC yield around 70g. Let’s assume your crude comes back are 60% THC that means that 70g makes up 60% of your oil so your oil volume will be around 228mL. Ideally you don’t want to run anything less than 1/2 the stated boiling flask volume. So no 1 pound won’t be enough for a 2L setup.


This is good info. Maybe not exactly what I wanted to hear but good stuff. I’ve seen some 1l kits out there. In your opinion, might that be a better option? Maybe a smaller kit with a little more starting bud? You sound like you have a bead on this, could you recommend some avenues that you might take if you were me? Thanks for the tip on the make shift heater, will be looking into that.

For sure. More starting material with a smaller setup is the way to go. You can buy a 2L setup as well as a 2 neck 1L boiling flask (make sure the joint sizes are the same as the 2L boiling flask) and use sand in the mantle to get an even heating surface. Use the 1L boiling flask instead of the 2L. Once you have enough to run larger amounts use the 2L flask. Have you run distillate before?

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I have ran a 2l spd with only 160 ish grams of starting material in it. No issues. It’s not recommend but you can do it

There you go, that makes perfect sense. I think I’m going to move towards that. I assume I could use the 1l flask in a 2l mantle? No, I haven’t run any yet. I will be piecing this set together with the help of fine folks like you. I’m excited to be pulling this list together. Thank you so much!

You can if you fill the Gap with sand. Line your mantle with foil. Insert flask. Backfill with sand.

Don’t go Chinese on the glass. The leaks aren’t worth it. Rocco or vacuum dynamics are good usa made, and won’t brake the bank

Excellent. Thanks!! You guys are wise beyond your years lol

Get this (with replacement plan) some hose and a cheap water pump and 5 gallon bucket and you have yourself a hot water recirculator.

Where are you located? I have some cls stuff I can hook you up with cheap that I’ll never use. Get you semi set up. I have everything minus collection pot and lid that I can supply ya

Given those constraints, cryo-ethanol => distillate makes sense.

Decarbed thca isolate should be pretty much equivalent to distillate, should you choose that route.

adding SPD and EHO to your repertoire will also serve you well should you take the professional hashashian path at some point…


You can always use a smaller flask than your heating mantle if needs be. I just fill in the space with sand.I need to do this because I use from 14/20 to 24/40 glass and only a few mantles. Without question it is best to use a flask that starts at least half full. I once saw a boiling flask in the one liter range with an ounce they intended to run. Not sure how well that worked…


Would that be along the lines of an ethanol extraction? what capacity is it? I’m southeast area, US.

Is this what you use? Is it a pretty stable temperature? This could save me some money for now.

Thanks, mang!! I appreciate everyone’s help.