Hash 101: What is hash and how is it made?

Hash is made from trichomes of the cannabis plant, usually from trimmed leaves taken after harvest. Hash can be solid or resinous or in powdered form. Hash (or Hashish) originated in the Middle East and West/South Asia.

Originally hash was produced by rubbing trichomes gathered on the fingers, after harvest, until the resinous “rub” could be scraped off of the hands and pressed into larger bricks

Any part of the cannabis plant can be used. Often, trichome-rich leaves that have been trimmed in the plant after harvest are used in hash production, for economical reasons as well as to cut down on waste.

Modern methods of hash production revolve around the same principle – the seperation and reconstiution of trichomes from the cannabis plant

“Flat-screening”
screens

Flat-screening is a very simple technique for producing hash. Trichome-rich leaves are rubbed, with gentle pressure, along a very fine metal screen which (if the producer is gentle and patient) only allows trichomes to pass through. Below the screen is a smooth contact surface, usually a mirror, glass plane or other frictonless surface that the trichomes can be easily scraped off of.

The trichomes can then be pressed into hash bricks. They will usually be darker coloured. This is because no matter how careful the producer is, bits of plant matter will pass through the screen “contaminating” the hash.
hashbrick

 Bubble Hash a.k.a Drum Machine Hash

 Cannabis leaves (shake) is placed in the drum of a small powered machine, that looks similar to a tiny washing machine.
bubblehashmachine

The producer places the shake into one bag, which is placed into another, which is placed into another and so on. Each bag has a very fine screen (measured in microns)that allows trichomes to pass through. Each bag is measured from 25µ to 220µ generally (although some producers opt for more or less) and each produces a different “grade” of hash, depending on how many trichomes vs. plant matter they allow through.

bubble hash bags

Very high grades of hash are referred to as “bubble hash” due to their bubbling up when exposed to high levels of heat. “Full melt” hash bubbles for a longer time until it is reduced to light ash and is generally regarded as the highest quality and most healthy form of hashish.
full melt

The micron grades are listed below:

25µ - smallest micron size. Often the “full melt” bag for sativa strains

45µ – very high grade. this grade can produce light-coloured “blond” hash.

73µ – often referred to as “full melt” bag, due to the rich amount of hash that melts and bubbles to light coloured ash when smoked

120µ -still good quality bubble hash

160µ – sometimes used to make indica dominant hash or to extract plant matter from 120µ and 73µ micron bags

190µ – solely used to withdraw plant matter from other bags

220µ – final bag that all others are placed into. Produces no consumable hash.

Ice is also added in the machine. Ice makes the trichomes on the leaves brittle, so that when the drum machine agitates the plant matter, the trichomes easily break off.

After the drum machine agitates the bags, the bags are removed from the machine and producers scrape the trichomes off of the bags and place it on a pressing screen so moisture can be removed. After moisture is gently pressed out, the extract dries and can be pressed and formed into a solid/resinous state or sometimes sold as powder.

BlackberryFullMelt                      OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“Full Melt” Hash                                                              Powdered Hash

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