Over the years, cannabis users have come up with a number of clever ways to consume the active compounds in the herb.
Extracts, as opposed to straight up buds or flowers, are a highly potent form of marijuana, and widely consumed for not only their powerful euphoric highs but also medicinal benefits.
With so many tried and true methods for extracting key cannabinoids like CBD and THC out of cannabis plants, it’s fair to say that the marijuana extract world is practically a rabbit hole.
QWISO is one such method, which can give great yields, even from relatively small amounts of cannabis flowers. In case you’re wondering, the abbreviation stands for ‘quick-wash in isopropyl’, even though among everyday consumers, it’s often called ISO oil or quick-wash hash oil.
What is QWISO?
Isopropyl hash oil is a kind of cannabis concentrate. It is made via an easy process in which trichomes from mature flowers are extracted with the aid of isopropyl alcohol – which is among the least-selective solvents currently known and given its makeup, it is easily water-soluble and has high polarity. It also allows for a very potent way to experience the euphoric effects of cannabis without actually requiring a lot of plant material to begin with.
A key thing to remember early on is that ethyl (consumable) alcohol or rubbing alcohol is never a substitute for isopropyl – because the end product can be dangerous to consume and also quite harmful to your health.
In the cannabis community, there are many ways to make a QWISO concentrate. For example, you can try the ‘soaking’ approach which could take anywhere between a few minutes to a few hours – depending on the kind of concentrate you seek. But that’s not the only deciding factor – it could also depend on what the cannabis quality is like at the start of the process.
In any case, we’d always recommend a flower that’s been dried and cured properly because we want to do our best to minimise the amount of chlorophyll and moisture that will inevitably be pulled from the plant material.
How to Make QWISO Extract
Before we start putting together the tools for this quick and easy process for making ISO oil through the ‘soaking’ method, we’ll need to grind up and freeze our cannabis and alcohol in advance – by at least a few hours or preferably overnight. When we freeze flowers, the trichomes are a lot easier to extract from the plant itself.
The flower material you’re going to use could either be nugs (buds) or trimmings – doesn’t really matter. In case of the latter though, you won’t need to freeze them.
Now, to make your quick-wash hash, you will need:
- Five-ten grams of bud or trimmings (although you can start with 3.5 as well)
- Coffee grinder
- One glass coffee pot
- A few coffee filters
- Mason jar
- Splash guard
- Clean glass dish or bowl
- Plastic storage container
- Ninety-five percent alcohol (the higher grain, the better)
And here’s how we make QWISO extract in 5 straightforward steps:
1. Once your plant material is frozen, place it in the Mason jar, pour alcohol over it – make sure the bud is completely bathed in it.
2. Close the lid properly and give the jar a good shake for 30 seconds, minimum. This 30-second shake is what actually defines QWISO as a ‘quick wash’ extract – because this time is sufficient to extract all those trichomes, while leaving behind that harsh-tasting chlorophyll.
The longer you ‘agitate’ the mixture, the more cannabinoids you can extract. However, don’t be surprised to find, despite your best efforts, a few traces of chlorophyll, waxes and plant alkaloids left behind.
3. Now drain the solvent in a glass bowl because we’ll need to flush the solid plant matter in the plastic storage container. Time to bring those coffee filters into the picture as they will be needed to strain the mixture at least a few times.
This ensures that all the solid plant matter has been properly removed, before you can place the clear, green-looking liquid under the sun, that’s been left behind. This should be done for at least 24-48 hours so that the alcohol can evaporate. Even though isopropyl alcohol is extremely inflammable, it can evaporate on its own and you will typically not need any further intervention.
However, if you feel that leaving it out in the sun is not convenient or too time consuming, you can place a fan next to your extract and have it blow cool air over it at the lowest speed. It’s always best to conduct this process within a well-ventilated area if you’re not going to leave it out in the sun – because the fumes can not only be toxic but slightly inflammable as well. An hour or so should do the trick.
4. Finally, you’re going to cook your extract in the oven until it reaches boiling point – that’s just under 83°C – and you’ll be left with a nice and potent oil that’s rich in THC. Wait for it to reach room temperature.
However, if you don’t want your QWISO to be too potent, you can bypass the oven and just let the alcohol evaporate until no traces of liquid are left behind.
5. Once your extract has reached room temperature and there are no traces of alcohol, use the razor to scrape it off the glass dish or bowl. Place it in a storage container.
Your ISO oil is ready for consumption!
It’s important to consider the fact that the time your bud must be soaked in alcohol varies between a few minutes to a few hours – as this depends on what kind of flower you’re starting out with as well as the kind of cannabis product you’re using.
Ways of Using QWISO
Quick-wash hash can be consumed much like other conventional forms of cannabis extracts. Additionally, the strain you choose will, to a certain degree, determine the overall taste and strength of the extract.
Your ‘go-to’ method of consuming quick-wash hash oil will pretty much depend on what kind of experience you’re looking to have. For example, having your hash oil in a vaporiser is easy and portable. One the other hand, if it is used in a topical, it has significantly less psychoactive effects but can remedy certain skin conditions and even inflammation.
Edibles are a healthier way of consuming hash oil as opposed to smoking – the latter is the best way to experience THC’s psychoactive effects. Having it in a tincture, on the other hand, is a very handy and convenient way of having it.
Using your hash oil in a tincture is a conservative way to enjoy your hash oil. All you need is a gram of your ISO oil, 3 ounces of at least 80% proof alcohol, 4 one-ounce bottles (eye droppers) and a glass jar.
Combine 3 ounces of consumable alcohol with an ounce of hash oil – place the lid tightly over it and store it in your freezer for up to 6 days, shaking it at least a few times each day.
After 6 days, store the tincture in your eye drop bottles. Squirt 1-2 drops under the tongue but hold it for about 30 seconds before swallowing it. Effects may come on after an hour or so, so don’t re-dose before 1-2 hours.
Prepare some hash oil butter beforehand and add the ISO oil to your edible as you’re cooking it.
You’re going to need one-third cup of cannabutter or coconut butter, 16 ounces of water and a gram of QWISO.
Combine the ingredients and let them cook on low heat for 30 minutes. Just don’t let the mixture bubble. Let it cool off for a few minutes and then let it sit in your freezer overnight. The next day you will notice that the hash butter has risen to the top. Remove it from the water and use a small amount of hash butter on a slice of toast to initially determine what does is right for you.
You can use the hash butter with your favourite edible recipes.
A common way to consume your QWISO is through a vaping pen which is specifically designed to be used with hash oil. Check with the manufacturer to ensure whether you will be getting smoke or vape when consuming hash oil.
Quick-wash hash oil can also be mixed in a topical solution to remedy skin conditions and arthritic pain. Hash oil that has activated THC can be absorbed into the skin easily so it’s important to know how much of the THC compound is in your oil.
Smoking ISO Oil
Depending on your personal preferences, you can consume QWISO in a spliff, joint or oil rig. Smoking ISO oil in an oil rig is the same as smoking other wax dabs with the aid of a rig.
If you prefer to smoke it in a joint or spliff, add a little hash oil on top of your cannabis while rolling it up.
Whether you smoke, vape or consume your ISO hash oil in an edible, this gooey and sticky extract can really take your cannabis high to the next level.