More about Crystalline
What is Crystalline?
Crystalline, also referred to as “crystals,” “THC crystals,” or “diamonds,” is a cannabis concentrate that comes in a solid state. It resembles coarse sugar, the kind typically used for decorating sugar cookies or glittering the tops of baked fruit pies. Crystalline is produced to be free of plant matter or terpenes, which are the distinct aromatic and flavor qualities of a cannabis cultivar, or strain.
What Cannabinoids are Available in Crystalline form?
Crystalline is produced to have just one cannabinoid. The only cannabinoids available in crystalline form are THCA, CBDA, and CBD. Anyone consuming THCA, CBDA, or CBD will not experience an intoxicating high, though THCA converts to THC when exposed to heat, making the crystalline intoxicating.
What is THCA Crystalline?
You may have heard the term “THC crystals” or “ THC crystalline ” used to describe crystalline, but THC, which produces an intoxicating high, is not available as crystalline; chemically, THC cannot hold a crystalline structure. In other words, what’s often referred to as “THC crystals” is not pure THC , but rather a form of pure THCA . THCA crystalline converts to active THC through decarboxylation at the time of consumption.
Photo by Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Is Crystalline Better than Other Concentrates?
When exposed to heat, crystalline is quite potent, though the body may not experience the full effect of this extract, as it lacks the terpenes found in flower and other concentrates. Terpenes help provide the unique flavors, aromas, and other effects of each high associated with different cultivars. Without these terpenes, crystalline isn’t able to provide the same health benefits attributed to the entourage effect .
Terpene removal is part of the crystalline production process and the resulting cannabinoids in the final product are the same, regardless of the starting plant material. For example, if a crystalline manufacturer used Durban Poison cultivar for one batch of THCA crystals, and Northern Lights cultivar for a separate batch of THCA crystals, the final products would produce the same effects. The isolated THCA crystals from one strain are identical to those from another. Dispensaries won’t carry strain-specific crystals; they simply don’t exist because THC or CBD Crystalline has no terpenes to give each cultivar its unique characteristics.
How Can Crystalline be Used?
Crystalline can be ingested orally, either added to a recipe when making edibles, or dissolving in oil to create a tincture-like product. For homemade edibles, crystals can be dissolved in cooking oil or butter, and used as an ingredient in recipes. Olive oil and coconut oil are the most popular for dissolving crystal to make a tincture-like product.
Crystalline can be smoked, or dabbed, using a dab rig. A dab rig is a type of smoking apparatus, similar to a small water bong, that vaporizes heated crystalline to be inhaled in single, measured dosages.
What is CBD Crystalline?
Dabbing CBDA or CBD Crystalline, the purest form of CBD-heavy concentrate, allows users to feel non-intoxicating effects quickly, but dabbing THCA will produce the intoxicating and psychoactive effects of THC, which may explain why they’re often thought of as “THC crystals.”
To dab CBD crystals , preheat a “nail” at one end of the dab rig using a handheld butane torch. Once the nail reaches the correct temperature, use the spoon-shaped end of a dabber to scoop and pour the appropriate dosage of crystalline on the nail. The crystals will instantly heat and vaporize on the heated nail. While inhaling the vapor through the mouthpiece end of the rig, place a cap on the nail to catch as much vapor as possible.
THCA crystalline can also be combined with other cannabis Concentrates, like live resin Shatter, to increase their potency. Mixing THC crystals with concentrates that have terpenes and other cannabinoids may aid the uptake of the THCA, CBDA, or CBD into the body.
Photo by Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
How is Crystalline made?
WARNING: THE MANUFACTURING OF CRYSTALLINE SHOULD ONLY BE PERFORMED BY SKILLED PROFESSIONALS AS THE PROCESS CAN BE EXTREMELY DANGEROUS AND ILLEGAL IN MANY JURISDICTIONS.
Crystalline is produced from a cannabis extract. The starting material for THC crystal extraction can come from raw cannabis plants . Crystalline has a unique, subtle taste and smell, but it lacks the chemical compounds that give other cannabis Concentrates their aroma and flavor.
A number of methods are used for making THC Crystalline, but the essential crystallization principles are the same. One way to understand the crystallization process is similar to the making of rock candy. Hot water is supersaturated with sugar, then as the water cools down, sugar crystals start to form on a string or stick. Hot water allows more sugar to dissolve than under room temperature. As the unstable sugar solution is removed from the heat and allowed to cool, sugar crystals start to precipitate out of solution and will eventually begin to form on the stick. The THC crystal formation will grow over time until the final product is successfully achieved.
The production of cannabis crystalline is essentially the process of mixing a refined cannabis concentrate with a solvent, then applying specific heat and pressure conditions to evaporate the solvent, allowing crystals to form. For example, if THCA crystalline is being produced, any THCA will precipitate, or separate, out of the solution. Under the right temperature and pressure conditions, the THCA will chemically bond to other THCA molecules, forming crystalline structures.
The purest form of cannabis Concentrate, this Extract consists of a single type of cannabinoid, usually tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), or cannabidiol (CBD). Crystalline is formed by thoroughly refining cannabis oil and serves as a base for formulated cannabis products.
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THC-A Crystalline – 99.99% Pure THC
THCA / THC-A crystalline is rumored to be the strongest hash in the world. THCA has become so popular that the market price for a single gram is $200.
During the last decade, the extraction of cannabis has greatly improved. Growers and extractors have mastered their crafts up to a level that allows them to transform cannabis concentrates into a variety of textures and forms. Concentrates like rosin, BHO, bubble hash all have been developed via the improved extraction techniques. However, the percentage of THC in the extracts usually ranges from 50-80%.
Hitherto, the extraction of concentrates with pure THC was just but a dream to players in the cannabis industry. This, however, seems not to be the case anymore as a company from Southern California, Guild Extracts, has managed to make this dream a reality, by creating a concentrate with 99.9% THC.
What Is THCA Crystalline?
During the extraction process, THC crystalizes turning into crystal-like small “rocks.” The appearance of the product is very different from other marijuana concentrates available.
The company states that “THCA Crystalline was developed as a means of delivering large, quantifiable doses of THCA.” However, as Guild Extracts are one of the only companies producing this concentrate, they keep the production process a secret. Moreover, they claim that their company can make the crystalline out of any raw material such as CO2 extract, ice water concentrate, or hydrocarbon extract. Notably, the company further added that they do not use a solvent in the extraction process.
Further, the company explained that THCA is the state of THC in Its “raw” form. Notably, the initials THCA stand for tetrahydrocannabinolic acid. However, THCA is non-psychoactive. It only becomes active when heated during decarboxylation. During this process, the acidic atom “A” is removed leaving behind the psychoactive compound THC.
Thus, to get high THCA crystalline has to be vaped or dabbed.
How Is THCA Made?
Like earlier explained, THCA is a compound from the same plant as THC only that the former is extracted while the plant is not yet dry. Interestingly, most people are used to the later because it is the most common. Further, people know that THC is derived once the plant is dry enough. One might wonder how THCA comes about and why it comes out almost 100% pure. Here is how.
Cannabis is the primary source of THC known to man, but various other plants have generous deposits of the substance. These include Coneflower, Electric Daisy, Black Truffles and Black Pepper among others.
To make THCA, the process begins with a prepared plant from the list above. Frequently, people prefer cannabis because it has the highest concentration of the target substance. Once the plant is ready, an extract is prepared from the plant which will now be the source for raw material.
The first step after the extract is obtained the addition of acetic and hexane acid. Notably, the need for these two chemicals is to ensure that THC is separated from the extract without having to undergo decarboxylation. This is the process where heat is applied to a plant extract or dried cannabis plant to obtain THC. However, decarboxylation usually consumes a lot of important elements and adds impurities to the final product. This is the reason why the THC that obtains from the process is only about 50% pure.
On the contrary, hexane and acetic acid dissolve the plant matter while leaving the THC substance whole. Further, it does not interfere with the process of separation by way of adding impurities. The resulting mixture is then filtered and separated using chromatography. Finally, methanol is used to purify the crystalline to be sure that the final product is only 0.003% impure.
Interestingly, there has been extensive criticism of THCA crystalline where the detractors liken the crystalline nature to such hard drugs as cocaine and meth. But, as we all know, looks can be deceiving.
Despite the appearance, this concentrate can be used for medical purposes. Its pure form is more of an advantage. Since it is possible to convert THCA crystalline into 99.9% pure THC, it can be dosed with high precision. This characteristic makes it especially attractive for many cannabis patients who would want to have precise intakes.
This product could be a fast relief for those patients whose diseases require therapies that have a high THC concentration. In essence, THCA could turn out to be the most effective treatment option for the patients. Further, the substance best suits those patients who do not wish to experience the effects of THC because when ingested pure, THCA crystalline has zero psychoactive effects.
Although the medical potential of THCA crystalline hasn’t been fully researched, it has several potential benefits. It has anti-inflammatory properties for the treatment of arthritis and lupus as well as neuroprotective properties for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Further, the substance is said to have anti-emetic properties for treating nausea and appetite loss.
Like THC and CBD, this new product can cure:
- Anti-inflammatory properties for treatment of arthritis and lupus
- Neuroprotective properties for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases
- Anti-emetic properties for treatment of nausea and appetite loss
- Anti-proliferative properties noted in studies of prostate cancer
The Effects Of THCA Crystalline
The effects that you get from a pure THC concentrate certainly are considerably different than from using a less potent extract. Interestingly, THCA can give the user more satisfaction compared to the smoking dry herb. Even though the high potency of THCA crystalline may seem scary, it’s not debilitating. According to some enthusiasts, THCA is potent enough to leave the user in the right mood for creativity.
Nonetheless, it is apparent that this concentrate lacks the signature aroma and flavor of cannabis. This is because it lacks an element called terpenes which is responsible for the distinctive qualities. In the light, if this, Guild Extracts came up with “dip n’ dab” which mimics the qualities and hence giving the users the impression that they are using cannabis.
Notably, the firm said that dip n’ dab is a product of a proprietary process that involves dipping THCA crystalline into terpenes that is extracted from Goji OG, Sherbert, and Tangie. As such, users of THCA can get an intense high as well as the taste and aroma of cannabis.
THC-A Crystalline also known as pure THC is the purest form on the market. What THCA is and how to extract it you can find out here.