Cannabis enthusiast and student of the art of solventless extraction
✅ Updated 10/28/21
Live Rosin is a premium form of Hash Rosin with specific origins. Unlike traditional hash rosin, Live Rosin is extracted from bubble hash that’s been made with Fresh Frozen Cannabis. Live rosins have quickly moved from the fringes of solventless menus to now becoming the mainstay of hash rosins. And this is for good reason.
To understand the value of Live Rosin, we need to understand the meaning of Fresh Frozen and why it creates a truly exceptional solventless product. refers to cannabis material that’s been frozen immediately after harvest. Because the plant material hasn’t been dried and cured, it retains much of the same qualities that it did while living, specifically the terpene and cannabinoid content. Fresh frozen material also contains a high amount of moisture, since it hasn’t been air-cured. Therefore, Fresh Frozen in its unprocessed form isn’t fit for rosin production.
The goal of a fresh frozen preparation is preservation. Freezing to subzero temperatures prevents the cannabis from the natural process of degradation and transformation that occurs at normal temperatures once a plant is harvested. Even a nice cool room temperature, which would be perfect for preparing flowers using the traditional hang drying method, allows terpenes to degrade and cannabinoids to transform into less therapeutic molecules.
Fresh frozen flowers can’t be pressed in their raw and unprocessed form, so first we first turn the material into bubble hash, then dry the hash in preparation to be pressed.
Therefore, the general workflow of Live Rosin production is:
- Freeze the cannabis flowers immediately after harvest
- Wash the Fresh Frozen material using the ice water extraction method to create bubble hash
- Extract Live Rosin from the bubble hash
Freezing the Fresh Cannabis
The first step in live rosin production is of course harvesting the cannabis plant. To harvest, chop the plant down by its main branches, then remove all leaves that aren’t visibly trichome-rich. Only branches, stems, and flowers should remain.
Then work with each branch to carefully trim away the sections of flowers, picking your way through each flower with your pruning shears. Try to keep as much of the flower intact as you remove it bit by bit from the branches. All we want are the fresh buds, minus woody plant material.
Next, it’s time to vacuum seal these buds in plastic sleeves. Vacuum sealing is important because it decreases the amount of oxygen present and minimizes condensation to maintain the flowers’ pristine condition while frozen. Too much oxygen present during freezing will lead to freezer burn, which is no good for the flowers. Be careful not to overly compact the buds together when vacuum sealing.
For the freezer itself, ideally you want to use an industrial freezer, capable of reaching subzero temperatures. A freezer with humidity control is another advantage, as condensation is the enemy.
The temperatures should be set anywhere between -4 and -40 degrees Fahrenheit. This environment preserves the precious qualities of the living plant, including its taste, aroma, and therapeutic effects.
If you don’t have access to an industrial freezer, then use the best you have. Keep the air inside the freezer as dry as possible. Also, bear in mind there will be greater terpene and cannabinoid degradation at temperatures over -4 degrees Fahrenheit. The plant material will be adequately frozen and ready for the next step in about 24-36 hours.
Bubble Hash Production
Now we move to phase two of the process, which is bubble hash production. We know that wet flowers aren’t fit for rosin extraction, as a relative humidity of around 63% in the cannabis material is required for effective flower rosin production. So we work around this by using the wet and frozen flowers to produce bubble hash. The ice water extraction method gives us a way to separate and collect the trichome heads from the flowers, which have been immaculately well-preserved in the freezer.
It’s the trichome heads that contain the highest concentration of therapeutic compounds that we seek.
Frozen trichomes will become brittle, meaning they can be easily broken off of the plant. Handle with care when removing cannabis flowers from their vacuum sealed pouches.
Once the Fresh Frozen buds have been removed from the freezer and liberated from their vacuum sealed pouches, move them immediately into bubble hash production, keeping everything as cold as possible throughout the process. If fresh frozen material thaws during extraction, there's a greater risk of chlorophyll contamination due to ice nucleation. Learn more about ice nucleation in What Is Ice Nucleation in Fresh Frozen Cannabis? What Is Ice Nucleation in Fresh Frozen Cannabis?
For a walk through of the ice water extraction method to make bubble hash, check out our Guide To Washing Bubble Hash.
Live Rosin Extraction
After you’ve properly dried the bubble hash, the fresh frozen concentrate is ready for rosin extraction. This is the final step in creating Live Rosin, the last phase of transformation that these Fresh Frozen trichomes will undergo.
The extraction specifications for pressing hash rosin are slightly different than those used in flower rosin. After all the work to get your Fresh Frozen to this point, it’s critical to make sure your time, temperature, and pressure settings during extraction are on point.
Follow the step by step process in our Guide To Pressing Hash Rosin.
Fresh Frozen material is the most premium source material you can hope to come by. In keeping the cannabis frozen at subzero temperatures, we can essentially capture the plant’s vitality and preserve those seductive qualities that we seek out in our dabs.
Solventless Live Rosin is at the tip of the pyramid when it comes to premium cannabis products. Although the equipment and logistics of producing Live Rosin are well suited for commercial operations, the home grower and rosin enthusiast can still produce this spectacular concentrate. For many rosineers, Live Rosin represents the pinnacle of the cannabis experience, and an endeavor well worth the undertaking.
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is live rosin?
Live rosin is a type of hash rosin that's pressed from bubble hash made with fresh frozen cannabis material.
How do you make live rosin?
Immediately after harvest, freeze the cannabis. Then put the fresh frozen material through the ice water extraction process to create bubble hash. Dry the bubble hash, then press it to create live rosin. You could also skip the freezing process and wash hash with the plants immediately after harvest, then press the bubble hash. This would also be considered live rosin.
What does "live" mean?
Live refers to the qualities of the live cannabis plant, which can be preserved by freezing the material immediately after harvest. This is in contrast to drying and curing material after harvest.
What is the benefit of live rosin?
One of the major benefits is preservation of terpenes, which enhances smell and flavor of rosin.
Is live rosin harder to make than regular hash rosin?
There is the extra step of freezing the material immediately after harvest, but the process of washing hash is the same. Also, ice nucleation can potentially lead to contamination of the hash when working with fresh frozen material. Learn more in What Is Ice Nucleation in Fresh Frozen Cannabis?