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Activating THC in oil?

Discussion in 'Weed Edibles' started by peacelovep0t, Jan 2, 2013.

  1. I read somewhere that putting hash in coconut oil is enough to activate the THC for consumption. Like no heat required. So theoretically according to this I could put iso hash in coconut oil and then into caplets to swallow and get high. Is this true? Is there any science behind this?

    Sorry if this is Incredibly ignorant sounding.
  2. #2 Carl Weathers, Jan 2, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
    First time I've heard of it. Coconut oil is just another oil that's high in saturated fat, and nothing that I'm aware of makes it able to activate THC on its own steam.

    You might have heard that it's good for oral THC absorption?
  3. Fat and alcohol can on their own, you can make cannapeanut butter or green dragon simply by letting it sit long enough and letting the alcohol or fat leach the thc out of the plant material. I have heard coconut oil is one of the highest fat contents of oils so I could see the thc in hash oil being leached out very quickly, probably even better if you just dropped some in some everclear. But don't quote me on this.
  4. Yes you're absolutely right. But the 'activation' requires decarboxylation of the acid. This does occur spontaneously but over a long period of time, hence why heating it up is generally necessary in the preparation of edibles.
  5. But wouldn't the process happen exponentially faster with hash oil since the thc is already bound to another material and because the extra time that it takes to leach the thc from the plant material is eliminated.
  6. And correct me if I'm wrong but I was under the impression that decarbing was only to turn the thca into thc, and the reason for the actual cooking not the decarb cooking was simply to bind it to the fat quicker.
  7. To the best of my knowledge, decarboxylation proceeds at a rate irrespective of whether the THCA is bound to plant matter or leached into oil. You're welcome to put your theory to practice, but I think it would be a safer bet to just cook it and ensure maximum conversion of the acid to THC.

    Yes, decarbing is the process of THCA --> THC. However like I said, that is slow at room temperature, and fast at elevated temperature hence the cooking. What you're saying is no doubt true also.
  8. Do it for science!!!! It's only a bit of oil
  9. I may actually try it out tomorrow and report back.
  10. Yeah no harm in losing like $10 worth of oil and if it works you have a great liquid edible

  11. You won't be reporting back for several weeks, to several months. That's how the no-heat extraction works. Time.

    We have a few hundred threads on this, and it's why we have so much dosage discrepancy and why we see so many failed edible stories (even WITH heat); because processing matters!

    And that being said, that's just extraction. If you don't decarb and activate before you begin, you will eventually wind up with bioavailable, but primarily INACTIVE, cannabinoids, long before you achieve activation which SLOWS DOWN ON EXPOSURE TO OIL AND PROTECTION FROM AIR! :eek:

    If you want active oil, but with absolutely no heat or pre-decarboxylation, you'll need to be patient for several months before you reach something just -close- to what a properly heated oil can give you in a single day. :)

    Hope this helps clear things up! :wave:
  12. Definitely thanks!
  13. I feel just a little ignored in all of this :(
  14. Did you type in the activation code in your email yet?
  15. Haha well because the other guy said it much more scientifically and such things
  16. Don't! I've weighed in both sides of the argument and I guess I might as well decarb before making caplets :D
  17. Kinda what happens when Bks drops that kinda knowledge bomb.

    I still read your replies. All spot on mate.
  18. Question:

    Why would this be though? Decarboxlyation of the compounds in herb only requires heat (activation energy) and time. Oil (liquids) are a much better at convecting and conducting heat than air (gas), and as i mentioned above, the oil would help prevent hot spots and thermal change that might damage the fragile compounds. So it seems like the reaction should be sped up in oil rather than air because of the faster and more even heat exchange. Perhaps some of the compounds in the oil (such as antioxidants and/or other photochemicals) might change the rate of the reaction, though i couldn't imagine it would be significant. The oil itself is alkaline which should help the reaction occur faster and more thoroughly, though it would be a minimal difference. The oil is also neutral (technically no pH whatsoever) and so the pH of the oil shouldn't have any negative noticeable impact on the reaction either. Since this is a simple redox reaction (only removing the carboxyl group and not replacing it with anything else) the molecules in the air (such as oxygen, co2, etc.) are not necessary for the reaction to take place. So i don't understand why 'protection from air' would matter here.

    So all that said, I'm just curious why the herb can't be decarbed in the oil in the oven for 220F for 20-30 minutes instead. Everything else in the process would be identical, the only difference would be the substitution of the dry-bake (the first decarb) with a decarb in oil in the oven for maybe slightly more time (+5 minutes or less) to compensate for the amount of energy/time needed to heat the oil first? And also, why would decarbing in oil result in "bioavailable, but primarily INACTIVE, cannabinoids," when this reaction only needs heat/time and both the oil and air method can provide both (and the oil might even do a better job as mentioned above)?
  19. #19 Dr. Sheldon Cooper, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2013
    The process of the solute dissolving in the solvent greatly interferes with the process of the Decarboxlyation of the acid, slowing it down far too much to be useful.

    So much so that you won't be able to have enough time to decarb the buds in the oil while it becomes bioavailable before causing too much degradation to the inactive products, like cbn.

    Much easier to decarb, then proceed with the solvation process (in oil).

    There's been decades of experimentation and research (hplc data to back up the science) that have led to these conclusions.
  20. #20 Blahable, Jan 5, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 5, 2013
    Thanks for the response. Greatly appreciate it. :D

    It's not that i don't believe BKS method is ideal (though there is a lot a pseudo-science thrown around when it comes to casual edible preparation, see Paleo's guide for an example of this), i was just wondering why exactly (chemically) there would be a difference between air and oil decarboxylation since the reaction only requires heat/time. Do you happen to have a link/source that shows open-air decarboxylation to be more effective than oil decarbing?

    I'm not sure why though, mind explaining? The heat-energy required to start the chemical reaction would still be available to the herbal compounds long before they finished dissolving into the solvent (oil) and even after the THCa/CBDa dissolved into the oil they would still have access to heat-energy to drop the carboxyl group and turn into THC/CBD (and then the COOH would form a small bubble in the oil and travel out of the solution). It would be different if the solvent was never going to be heated (e.g., a cold-oil extraction which doesn't also decarb during the extraction process, which would benefit from a dry-bake decarbing first) but in this case (the BKS's canna-oil recipe) the oil is being heated with the herb so the compounds should dissolve and decarb at the same time.

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