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Bubble Wash Bags are sets of filter screens used to separate and collect trichome heads from cannabis plant material during the ice water extraction process. They are the main pieces of equipment used to make bubble hash. These bags are differentiated by micron filter size, with the larger microns letting more cannabis pass through and the smaller microns allowing less. They're cylindrical with an open top, resembling a bucket, and constructed with a waterproof outer wall and a nylon filter screen at the base. All mesh bags are also available, without the waterproof side walls.
Bubble Wash Bags stack one inside of the other, with the smallest micron filter bag as the bottom layer, and the larger micron filter bags nested inside. A mixture of water and cannabis is poured through the series of bubble hash wash bags, with smaller and smaller pieces of plant material being filtered from the water as it passes through increasingly smaller microns.
5-gallon buckets are commonly used as both wash/work buckets, and they provide excellent structural support for the nested bubble hash wash bags. When stacking Bubble Wash Bags inside of a 5-gallon bucket, place the smallest micron filter at the bottom, then arrange the larger microns inside. The micron at the very top should be the largest micron.
Ice water and cannabis material are first agitated together in a work bucket, then the ice water and cannabis slurry is poured through the series of Bubble Wash Bags. The first bag to filter the ice water is the largest micron, followed by increasingly smaller microns. As the microns become smaller the screen becomes finer, meaning that smaller pieces of cannabis material are being filtered from the water.
Bubble Wash Bags give extractors the ability to target specific sizes of cannabis material for collection and hash production. The size of full trichome heads is generally between 20 and 120 microns, which means that the Bubble Wash Bags in this general range will contain the highest percentage of our most targeted cannabis material.
If you want a thorough walk-through of the hash making process, we have a great resource for you in our Ultimate Guide to Washing Bubble Hash.
The Micron Breakdown
Bubble Wash Bags are often sold in sets of four, ranging from 25-220 microns. Smaller microns mean smaller gaps in the filter screen, which filter out the very smallest sizes of cannabis material from the ice water. The 25 micron screen is the finest of the filters, letting only the tiniest of particles pass through. This provides the highest filtration efficiency, but doesn’t necessarily yield the best hash.
The 220 micron bag is the most lenient of filters, letting the largest amount of cannabis, and highest amount of contaminants, to pass through.
With each subsequently finer filter, smaller and smaller particles of cannabis are prevented from passing through. In a set of bubble hash wash bags, one or two filters will contain the most desirable grade of hash.
The 220 micron filter bag, also known as the Work Bag, holds the ice and the largest chunks of cannabis material. The relatively wide gaps in this filter allows trichome-rich water to pass through the wide, 220 micron screen. However, this water will also contain a large amount of contaminants.
The 160 micron bag is the contaminant removal bag, which collects grades of hash in the 1-2 star range. This hash is high in contaminants but can be great for making edibles.
The 90, 73, and 45 micron Bubble Wash Bags collect the most qualified trichome heads for the best quality bubble hash. Many ice water hash extractors consider the 73 micron filter supreme, as the gaps in this size screen most closely resembles the diameter of complete trichome heads. This is where you can capture true full melt bubble, the 5 and 6-star hash.
The 25 micron bag is the most aggressive filter in the set, capturing the tiniest of cannabis particles. These particles include pieces and parts of trichomes, but rarely full, intact trichome heads. These are the last remaining bits of trichomes that will be salvaged from the water and cannabis mixture. Top quality hash isn’t generally collected from the 25 micron bag, but it’s still definitely workable.
Check out more info about micron filters and how to choose the right size for your solventless extractions.
What Are The Benefits of Using Quality Bubble Wash Bags?
Results - Bubble Wash Bags are the cornerstone of the ice water extraction process. Quality equipment enables quality results. A quality set of bubble hash wash bags allows the extractor to focus on…, the ultimate goal of the process.
Longevity - Bubble Wash Bags are not designed to last forever, but you should expect at least several dozen washes before any noticeable breakdown in materials or construction begins to occur.
Dependability - Bubble Wash Bags are the main pieces of equipment for ice water extraction, they need to be dependable for the job. Doesn’t rip or tear during extraction. Durable material held together with strong seams means that quality bubble hash wash bags can withstand the rigor of the ice water extraction process.
Qualities To Look for When Sourcing Bubble Wash Bags
The Right Microns
Most Bubble Wash Bags are sold in sets of 4 or 8, with microns ranging from 25 to 220. At least one of the bags should filter at the 45, 73, or 90 micron size. Filters in this range are great for collecting the best of the best quality hash.
Strong, Tear-Resistant Material
High quality food-grade material that won’t disintegrate and traces of plastic and fibers in your hash. Bubble Wash Bags should be made with high quality fabric like nylon that won’t readily break down, leading to synthetic fibers in your hash.
A super durable build doesn’t have to come at the expense of a lot of excess weight. Quality Bubble Wash Bags are not too bulky and can be easily inverted for efficient hash collection from the screens.
High Quality Stitching
Tough stitching is as important as strong material. Bubble Wash Bags should have sturdy, reinforced seams that will withstand the stress of the washing process. The Press Club's proprietary stitching sets our Bubble Wash Bags apart, meaning our filter bags are capable of standing up to the rigors of ice water extraction. This unique stitching is signified by the pink string in all our bubble wash bags.
Avoid brands with stitching that's too loose and visibly inconsistent (1). Some cheap bags are made with poor stitch work and shoddy craftsmanship, which shows in the way the seams are finished. Loose threads and sloppy folds that have been stitched over multiple times are other giveaways of subpar quality (2).
Grommets for Hanging
Washing ice water bubble hash is hard work! It’s especially taxing on the back, while the extractor holds each bag in suspension as the water drains through the filter screen. Having a system in place to hang the bubble hash wash bags while the water is draining through the bottom is a major advantage, and grommets help this effort. Grommets are small, reinforced holes in the side walls of each bubble hash wash bag, by which you can hang the bags to drain. You can read more in our article How To Reduce Stress on Your Back While Washing Hash.
Waterproof Side Walls
The sidewalls of the bubble hash wash bags should be waterproof, so that all of the water drains through the filters rather than seeping out through the sides. Waterproof material also helps reduce the amount of trichomes stuck to the sides of the bags.
Bubble Wash Bags that have filter screens extending several inches up the sidewalls allow for faster drainage. Water can drain through the main filter at the bottom of the bag, it can also drain through the first couple inches of the side walls. Faster draining reduces processing time, saving on production costs and a sore back!
Easy To Clean
Quality Bubble Wash Bags are easy to clean with ice cold water and a toothbrush. Isopropyl alcohol isn't often needed, and can actually speed up deterioration of the material. The Press Club Bubble Wash Bags are made with covered seams, which means less trichomes become stuck inside. This makes the bags easier to clean and maintain.
Check out our other article about how to clean bubble bags, for some useful tips and tricks.
Quick To Dry
Quality Bubble Wash Bags are fast drying, which is an important feature for their longevity. Filter bags that are put away wet will be quick to harbor mold and mildew, which will absolutely ruin the Bubble Hash Wash Bags. Be sure your Bubble Hash Wash Bags are clean and completely dry before storing.
How To Care for Bubble Wash Bags
After choosing a set of Quality Bubble Wash Bags it’s a good idea to give them a good initial rinse in cold, clean water before their first use. This removes any small amounts of dust or fibers that might be stuck to the bags, so they’re in pristine condition for their maiden wash.
It’s also important to maintain your Bubble Wash Bags. Regular cleaning and proper storage is key. Check out our guide to Correctly Cleaning Bubble Wash Bags to read more about proper Bubble Bag care.
A set of high quality Bubble Wash Bags are worth their weight in hash. Designed and built to go the distance, quality bags enable the extractor to create high quality products, and they warrant a slightly higher price point. Ask extractors who have spent countless hours washing hash and they’ll tell you, it’s worth the investment.
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What material are bubble hash wash bags made of?
The best wash bags like those from The Press Club are made with food grade nylon.
How long are bubble wash bags supposed to last?
Wash bags should last years if properly cared for. The Press Club's Wash Bags are guaranteed for life.
Can you repair bubble bags if they rip?
If you tear the filter screen it's best to discard the bag, as any repairs are highly likely to catch trichomes.
Do you have to clean bubble wash bags often?
Yes, the bags should be cleaned after every use. Learn more in our article How To Correctly Clean Bubble Wash Bags.
What does quick-draining mean in bubble wash bags?
Quick-draining refers to the extended mesh screen into the sidewalls of the wash bags. More filter material means a greater surface area through which water can drain, speeding up the draining process.