Hi all. I have been a long time lurker here, first time poster. I have read through the various threads on the red rings and am at a loss on what to do to prevent this. We have never had this issue until recently but it is my thoughts that since our distillate process has gotten better(THC%-wise) and our production levels have increased we are just now noticing it since product is sitting around on shelves longer. A bit about our process:
We are doing bucket tek Ethanol at -50C or below that is chilled by using dry ice directly into the buckets. We use a BVV centrifuge to agitate and spin out the solution. This is filtered through an activated carbon/silikate pulver cake and rotovapped down to a crude. The crude is then drained from the flask into a SS bucket that is heated to 110C to decarb on a hot plate with mixing. Usually takes around 1-2hrs for decarb. This is then loaded into distillation and goes through 2 passes. We typically end up in the 90-95% THC range on the distillate after 2 passes.
For producing the cartridges we pre-heat the distillate to 65C, remove it from the oven, add terpenes, and homogenize using an Omni homogenizer. We are careful with temperature levels during this and try to ensure it does not go over 60-65C during the mixing. This is then loaded into a Thompson Duke IZR and filled, capping as quickly as possible after filling. Typically carts are capped within 3-4 minutes of filling.
Our resolutions so far have involved ensuring capping happens as quickly as possible and ensuring the temperatures during mixing/heating are controlled but we are still seeing red rings occur. I’m wondering now if it has something to do with pH imbalance from chilling ethanol directly with dry ice? Or if the increased potency in our distillate is the culprit? It seems that some batches get hit with it and some don’t and it is driving me nuts trying to figure out the issue.
We have a new system almost finished with the install that will remove the dry ice variable but I was curious if anyone has any advice? Would be willing to pay for a consult if it can help us resolve this issue.