When we talk about Iceolator, we are also talking about Bubble Hash, or IWE (Ice Water Extraction). In order to achieve this extraction we only use water and ice, which is why we can say that we are talking about solventless (without the use of solvents) extractions.
The Iceolator technique is a well known leftover technique which is why in the last few years we have seen the quality of these extractions rise to the point in which we can see full melt or examples of complete fusion.
There are different methods in order to carry out the extraction, and one of the most well known is using materials that we can easily find in any grow shop:
- mesh filters
Iceolator method used by Jhonny Pot
This method is very simple, and all you have to to is follow the steps explained here:
- Fill your triangles with the material that you want to use for the extraction and put them in the washer, along with the ice. The proportion of ice depends on the method used by each person, in my case I generally use 2 bags.
- Once that’s done, add the water which has been previously chilled in the refrigerator or freezer. The temperature of the water at the moment in which we produce the extraction should be between 2ºC and -2ºC.
- At this point I tend to add a half a bag more of ice in order to cover the triangles and reach the correct proportion of water and ice, but that is optional.
- Now is the moment to program our washer to different times, depending on the result that we want to achieve. Personally, I tend to program the wash to between 9 and 15 minutes, since an excessive amount of time can worsen the quality of the extraction. Attention! This is the moment when, in my opinion, one of the greatest failures happens. You shouldn’t program the washer right away, as it’s important to use a thermometer in order to be sure that the water has already reached the previously mentioned desired temperature.
- Once the programmed amount of time on the washer has passed, pour the churned water into a bucket where you will have stacked the mesh filters, from smallest to largest microns (25, 45, 73, 90, 120, 160, 190, 220). Each size of trichome will filter through the largest micrage and will be retained in its corresponding mesh filter. Then, remove each mesh one by one, centering the trichomes with water pressure and allowing the excess water to drain.
- Once each mesh bag has drained, scoop out the material of each one with a metal spoon and deposit it onto squares of 25 micron mesh by Bubble Bags which we will have previously prepared, placing various pieces of paper towel bellow each one in order to finish up filtering all of the excess water contained within the extraction.
Drying the Iceolator
To me, drying the Iceolator is one of the most important steps and one that we should really focus on so as not to leave behind large portions of resin that could take longer to dry and may cause problems.
To start off, separation the extracted resin into smaller portions in order to help with drying and to avoid retained humidity which can cause problems like fungus decay in our resin once it is dried. To do this, you can use a fine grain strainer of approximately 150 microns.
Pass small portions of resin from the drying square to the strainer. With the help of the previously mentioned teaspoon, push gently in a circular motion in order to pass the resin little by little through the strainer. To finish cleaning the resin that could possibly get trapped inside of the strainer you can use a steel bristle brush or if you don’t have one, a toothbrush.
The ideal thing is to let it dry in a dark room, at a temperature that is between 18ºC and 21ºC and a constant humidity between 45% and 50%.
I recommend the use of new pizza boxes, and putting down a piece of grease-proof paper in order to avoid contact between our resin and the cardboard, thereby being able to make the it easier to manage and separate our extraction based on quality.
Another material drying technique is with the use of no-frost refrigerators, with which you can reduce the drying time and achieve the results at a lower temperature. There is also less oxidation of our extraction with the use of these refrigerators.
All of these small changes in technique that we use today to achieve good Iceolator make a difference, therefore giving us samples with a range of different colors and varying textures.
Interview with an extractor friend that shows us his technique and his Iceolator
-Which variety have you used this time for your Iceolator extraction?
This time I used Sour ripper feminized marijuana seeds from Ripper Seeds.
-Did you use a washer or did you churn the material in a different way?
I used a battery drill at a very low speed, with the same instrument one would use to remove paint.
-What brand of mesh bag did you use?
I have the 8 of the 4.5 liter mesh Bubblebags, but this time I used 3.
-Which mesh bag gave you the best quality?
This time I collected two qualities, one in the 120 mesh and another in the 45 mesh, from which I collected together the 90,47,45 since this time I didn’t want competition material and I think that the result has been great although I know that the best material would have been from the 73 mesh.
-How long did you “churn” the material that you used?
This time I churned it for 10 minutes. First I waited for two minutes until it reached the desired temperature at 2ºC, measuring it with a thermometer, so it total it had been in the water for 12 minutes.
-How long had the material you used dried/cured?
For 2 months, so we could say that it was dried and partly cured.
-The curing looks really well done, and it looks as though you have been able to preserve the color of the resin. Which drying technique did you use for the extraction? Microplane or sieve technique?
I freezed the material after letting it drain in the mesh and then collecting it. After 24 hours of freezing, I used the Microplane method over a piece of greaseproof paper, placed on top of a few paper towels, in order to avoid possible wet zones. In my opinion it’s a great method in order to leave your material really fine so that it can dry better and more uniformly.
Here, we had an interruption since in my opinion, the Microplane method is a little bit aggressive (although it’s a good technique that I use when required). If I can, I tend to use the Sieve (strainer) technique since it seems less aggressive to me, because you don’t have to rub your material against the walls of your grater. The conclusion that we can draw from this point is that according to the drying time of the material that you are using, you are able to use one technique or another.
The truth is that the samples that were brought for us to try were of excellent quality and of a taste that can only be enjoyed through Iceolator. From here we send out a big thank you for this interview and sign off until next time, which I hope is very soon.