If you are a newbie, you might already be familiar with the wide and weird world of cannabis. However, if you might find the realm of concentrates much stranger, which is not actually surprising. Marijuana concentrates can be soft or hard, yellow, or clear, contain all terpenes and cannabinoids or just a few. You can bake with them, inhale them through a vaporizer, drop under your tongue or wrap in a joint. Until you have experimented with them, it is easy to see them with some confusion and fear.
Instead of trying to tackle all kinds of concentrates at once, let us start with one of the most baffling: shatter. What is this transparent, glass-like material made and how is it used? Read on to find out.
What is Shatter?
Shatter is a cannabis extract, which is a concentrated form of cannabis. It is named after its brittle texture because it shatters like glass. It tends to be transparent with an amber color, although some can be tinted and have varying degrees of opaqueness. It is not inherently more or less potent than the other kinds of concentrates like oil or wax, but it sits right in the middle of the extract spectrum, particularly between raw oil and cannabis isolates. Weed shatters do not have much plant matter and usually lack cannabinoids like CBD and CBG despite having high THC content.
There are two things that make shatter very popular: cost and ease of use. Unlike other concentrates like raw bud, shatter allows for maximum THC ingestion while minimizing lipid ingestion. Lipids are basically fats in the cannabis that burn at higher temperatures than the other bud compounds. Because of this, when smoking raw flower, you usually burn the flavorful terpenes even before the lipids melt down. In making shatter, lipids are removed which leaves the good terpenes and cannabinoids that you can inhale in low temperatures. Also, shatter is more affordable compared to other extracts and is not messy to handle less more affordable extracts like budder wax.
How is Shatter Made?
- Prepare. The material is trimmed to small marble-sized pieces. These trims or nugs are then properly dried.
- Blast. Almost all shatter is extracted using propane or butane, although there are processes that produce it using carbon dioxide which gives a purer flavor.
- Clean. The material go through a process of whipping, heating, stirring, and vacuuming to eliminate residual plant material and hydrocarbons.
- Winterize. Clean oil is mixed with pure ethanol and placed in a freezer to get rid of more hydrocarbons. Once chilled, it is filtered to remove ethanol sludge. This step is repeated several times to remove as much plant material as possible.
- Cook. A gentle heating burns off extra ethanol to make the product ready for consumption.
How to Use Shatter?
- Dabbing. This is the most efficient way to consume shatter. It requires heating small amounts of shatter in low temperatures to inhale its vapor.
- Vape pens. There are vape pens where you can load various kinds of concentrates onto their heating element to transform them into small dab rigs.
- Smoking.Perhaps the easiest way to use shatter, this involves pulling it into a thin strip and wrapping it like a regular blunt or joint along with the prepared bud.
- Edibles. Simple edibles can be made by dissolving a shard into cooking oil and using it to prepare any dish.
If you found yourself growing tired of the same old bud, consider giving shatter a shot. Visit your nearby dispensary or your trusted online cannabis dispensary to learn more about shatter recommendations and dosing so you get a good trip during your first time.