How to Make Hash

Sophia Delphi May 16, 2022 - 7 min read
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Image of Hash

Your definition of hash may depend on your age.

Old-timers may nostalgically remember hashish as weed’s exotic cousin, enjoyed overseas or as a treat smuggled back by friends. It was a cannabis product created by compressing the plant’s sticky resin into a ball known as charas and traditionally smoked in a pipe.

Asian hashish had a THC concentration of 50-60% and was understandably seen as the ultimate marijuana.

In today’s weed culture, the word “hash” is usually combined with the word “oil.” Hash oil is a concentrated cannabis extract that, with today’s technology, can be much more potent than hashish.

However, hash is still very much around. It’s similar to the stuff your parents or grandparents may have enjoyed — and it’s also similar to the hash oil that’s now popular for dabbing.

And hash is easy to make at home.

Let’s learn more.

A Brief History of Hash

Back in the ‘60s and ‘70s, “tourists” following the so-called hippie trail used to travel through countries like Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, and India — making sure to sample the local psychoactive delights along the way.

One of those delights they enjoyed was hashish. The hash was created when farmers rolled the weed plant between their hands to let the resin rub off; it was then collected and formed into a smokeable form.

There have historically been other uses for hash; a notable one is mahjoun, a thousand-year-old Moroccan sweet treat made with hashish said to have been the world’s first edible. Another is the traditional Indian drink bhang, which is infused with hash,

In the 1980s, cannabis aficionados began experimenting with more productive ways to create a hash. They used vibrations to remove resin from marijuana plants, they used water to extract the trichomes from weed, and they developed equipment to help with those processes.

Their methods evolved into the popular methods of creating what’s now known as dry sift hash and bubble hash, both of which we’ll discuss in more detail shortly. And of course, it’s still possible to make traditional charas by rubbing weed in your hands and then rolling the resin into a ball.

The experimentation didn’t stop there. Technological advances and specialized machinery allowed cannabis producers to find new methods suitable for extracting cannabinoids and terpenes from weed plants.

Those new processes used solvents like butane and ethanol to create highly-concentrated extracts — known as hash oils — with THC potencies as high as 80-95%, almost twice as potent as hash, and extremely popular for dabbing.

Hash created without the help of solvents remains a popular option, though. Let’s talk about its different forms, and how to make it yourself.

Dry Sift Hash

This process is less messy and more efficient than rolling weed in your hands.

The simplest way to make dry sift hash simply requires a screen (like a window screen), a piece of stiff plastic (like a credit card), and of course, some weed.

  1. If the weed is fresh, freeze it first. When trichomes are frozen, it’s much easier to “convince” them to fall off of the plant.
  2. Break the weed into relatively-small pieces, and then gently brush it back and forth across the screen with the plastic. (You can also use your hands, as long as you wear gloves.) The resin, or trichomes, will fall through the screen; just have something underneath to catch it. Keep brushing for a while, until no more resin falls through.

Yes, that resin is kief, but it’s also dry sift hash. However, it will probably still contain some plant material, which is why the simplest way to do something isn’t always the preferable way. A better approach is to use several screens with different sizes of mesh, stacked on top of each other with the ones with the largest “holes” at the top.

That way, the trichomes fall onto a second screen where they can again be brushed, separating more plant material and allowing purer hash to fall onto the third screen. The more times you repeat the process, the purer and more potent your dry hash will be.

If you’re the DIY type, the optimal sifting method uses 4-6 screens with sizes between 200 microns at the top and 50 microns at the bottom. You can purchase inexpensive, ready-made sifting kits online, and they’ll make the process easier.

Bubble Hash

This method is based on the same general idea as dry sift: when you manipulate a weed, its trichomes fall off. But you need different equipment to make bubble hash, notably a bucket, water, ice, and micron “bubble bags” (available online, and they come with a drying screen that you’ll also need).

  1. Set up the drying screen on top of some paper towels.
  2. Freeze your weed if it’s still fresh.
  3. Line the bucket with your bubble bags, one by one, and secure them. Just as with dry hash screens, the bubble bag with the largest micron size should go at the top.
  4. Fill the top bag with ice and weed, placing them in layers. Don’t scrimp on the ice. Then pour in cold water to cover the ice and weed, and let the mixture sit for a bit to get even colder.
  5. Stir the mixture for 15 minutes. Some people use a paddle, but it’s much easier to use a kitchen mixer, or a power drill with a paddle attached to it.
  6. Take out the top bag and set it aside (after squeezing the weed to get all of the water out of it).
  7. Remove each of the other bags in order, scraping the resin off the bottom of each one onto the drying screen. The closer you get to the bottom, the purer your hash will be. You can either keep each batch separate to preserve their individual potency or combine them for a larger stash.

Bubble hash will likely be more potent than dry sift hash, but they’re both concentrated products and a dramatic improvement over the THC content of flower.

How to Use Hash

Once you have your dry sift or bubble hash, what do you do with it?

It can be smoked on its own, but due to its high THC levels a little goes a long way, and you may end up wasting most of the bowl. A better idea is to sprinkle it into joints (or roll the joints in it) to increase their potency. You can also top a bowl with it, or use it to make edibles.

Many prefer to press dry sift into solid hash by using a pollen press (also called a hash press) or to make rosin with it by heating it in flat iron. The latter method creates a concentrate that’s ideal for dabbing, which is also a great way to use bubble hash.

How to Make Hash: FAQ

Q: Isn’t there a way to make hash with dry ice?
A: It’s just a much-faster variation on the bubble hash collection method we’ve discussed. You put the weed into a separate bucket with dry ice, in a ratio of 60% flower and 40% dry ice, and let it sit for a few minutes. Then put the mixture into your bucket lined with bubble bags and shake it for 2-3 minutes. The trichomes will fall right off. Be sure to wear insulated gloves and be careful; dry ice can cause serious frostbite in just seconds.

Q: How potent is dry sift or bubble hash created by these methods?
A: It depends on the weed you use and how patient you are with the processes. It can reach as high as 60-70% THC content under optimal conditions.