What is R134a Extraction

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shawncomerg

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Most cannabis extractions tend to focus on
targeting as much of the cannabinoids in the biomass
as possible such as THC and CBD without much
consideration to the flavor and aroma content, which is
known to produce synergistic effects with the
cannabinoids.

Cannabis and hemp processors have been increasingly
using R134a, a creative and effective solvent. In order
to generate distinctive full spectrum goods, it is utilized
to maintain the plant’s entire flavor and aroma profile.
R134a is an affordable extraction method used to
create high-potency extracts with high quality strain
specific properties.

Pure5 Extraction Equipment was designed with the
concept of the lowest-cost operation and the highest
quality outputs possible. The selective polarity of our
chosen solvent and the low pressure at which the
terpenes are extracted leave with you with a higher
quality and more strain specific extract than any other
extraction process currently used in the cannabis
industry.


What is r134a extraction
 
Deadstill

Deadstill

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That's interesting. Using refrigerant 134 a as an extraction solvent. I used to be an automotive technician so I know all about it. How are you guys recovering the refrigerant after extraction or are you just letting it off-gas into the atmosphere? Just wondering. I know you're supposed to have an EPA 609 certification to work with r134a and it's pretty bad for the environment unfortunately. This doesn't leave anything behind in the end product, I take it? I'm definitely intrigued to learn more about this procedure!
 
G

goodlyf

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That's interesting. Using refrigerant 134 a as an extraction solvent. I used to be an automotive technician so I know all about it. How are you guys recovering the refrigerant after extraction or are you just letting it off-gas into the atmosphere? Just wondering. I know you're supposed to have an EPA 609 certification to work with r134a and it's pretty bad for the environment unfortunately. This doesn't leave anything behind in the end product, I take it? I'm definitely intrigued to learn more about this procedure!
You do have to have an EPA 608 cert to be able to work with a r134a extractor. If you want to use R134A alone it extracts nothing unless you use a co-solvent or extract under very high pressure. It has been known to the pharma, fragrance and flavor industry for over 20 years. The extract needs winterization after extraction. If you don’t decarb starting material you have low yields and better taste, if you decarb starting material have a higher yields but less terpene content. If the extract is not fully purged it can produce Hydrogen Fluoride if it's heated past 480 deg F. So purge is super important there must be ZERO residual Hydrogen Fluoride is deadly! r134a is a CFC being phased out of many industries by HFCs and newer HFOs because CFCs are OZONE DEPLETING CHEMICALS. The bulk of the solvent is recovered in the closed loop system via vacuum. Residual solvents can be rotovaped out because the residual solvent will off gas during heating of the extract.
 
Deadstill

Deadstill

I'm from the government, and I'm here to help.
Supporter
2,245
263
You do have to have an EPA 608 cert to be able to work with a r134a extractor. If you want to use R134A alone it extracts nothing unless you use a co-solvent or extract under very high pressure. It has been known to the pharma, fragrance and flavor industry for over 20 years. The extract needs winterization after extraction. If you don’t decarb starting material you have low yields and better taste, if you decarb starting material have a higher yields but less terpene content. If the extract is not fully purged it can produce Hydrogen Fluoride if it's heated past 480 deg F. So purge is super important there must be ZERO residual Hydrogen Fluoride is deadly! r134a is a CFC being phased out of many industries by HFCs and newer HFOs because CFCs are OZONE DEPLETING CHEMICALS. The bulk of the solvent is recovered in the closed loop system via vacuum. Residual solvents can be rotovaped out because the residual solvent will off gas during heating of the extract.

I worked with an older gentleman who turned wrenches since he was able to hold one.. He was telling me what it was like working in a shop in Phoenix, AZ during the 70's and most of the 80's - they used to just vent the R-12 directly to open air. He said they did this so often every day there would be a cloud of refrigerant hovering above the shop floor all day. I can only imagine what it was doing to their lungs! 🤣 I'm sure this was common practice up till '94
 
G

goodlyf

8
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I worked with an older gentleman who turned wrenches since he was able to hold one.. He was telling me what it was like working in a shop in Phoenix, AZ during the 70's and most of the 80's - they used to just vent the R-12 directly to open air. He said they did this so often every day there would be a cloud of refrigerant hovering above the shop floor all day. I can only imagine what it was doing to their lungs! 🤣 I'm sure this was common practice up till '94
That's nuts! Speaking of lungs one factoid about r134a is it's used in asthma inhalers as the propellent, apparently is has a very low acute inhalation toxicity. Just don't heat it above 480 dreg F and inhale, the outcome would be less than desirable.
 
G

Glomus

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You do have to have an EPA 608 cert to be able to work with a r134a extractor. If you want to use R134A alone it extracts nothing unless you use a co-solvent or extract under very high pressure. It has been known to the pharma, fragrance and flavor industry for over 20 years. The extract needs winterization after extraction. If you don’t decarb starting material you have low yields and better taste, if you decarb starting material have a higher yields but less terpene content. If the extract is not fully purged it can produce Hydrogen Fluoride if it's heated past 480 deg F. So purge is super important there must be ZERO residual Hydrogen Fluoride is deadly! r134a is a CFC being phased out of many industries by HFCs and newer HFOs because CFCs are OZONE DEPLETING CHEMICALS. The bulk of the solvent is recovered in the closed loop system via vacuum. Residual solvents can be rotovaped out because the residual solvent will off gas during heating of the extract.
Nice so its horrible for the environment and deadly to humans, sounds like cannabis processing is still headed in that direction. What makes it better then N-butane?
 
B

BAM63

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N-Butane is slow (5 days for sell-able product vs 5 hours) and requires too much post processing, but what sucks is its not precise enough. Most people using BHO have very low yeilds and have to extract live frozen plants to achieve good quality terpene and more importantly flavinoids. Freon extraction works like Co2 so you have to have some knowledge of how it behaves at certain temps and pressure to get it work correctly and the two brands that make these machines are PLC driven so its automated but you still have to program it. The solvent is not HFC-134a but rather HFC-134p which is a key differnce light lighter fluid vs N-Butane. I own both brands of machines and in both cases your extracting at very low pressure compared to Co2 , butane and Rosin (less than 80 psi). A lot of the compounds we extract in cannabis begin degrading a very low pressure. Finally the earlier comments are correct about HFC-134 degrading but its at 480 K which is about 360f but at 10,000 psi so the risks are not really there which is why the FDA gave it GRAS certification for food flavor and inhalers over 30 years ago. We used butane orginally becuse it was primative and we could extract decently in remote hidden areas. Over the years the method stuck around becuse we were all familiar with it. But sadly the industry is really about unit economics now and in the future N-butane will be used for specialized tasks. What made me try freon orginally was the lack of C1D1 and fire build out. Freon machines are expensive so it balances out but the risk of errors by employees is way lower and I remote control extractions in mulitple states with my latop. Finally freon makes the best most flavorful oils from both old outdoor and top shelf indoor. I have noticed that cultivars with higher threshold for UV tollerence produce the best oils but even one year old abused biomass will still make awesome oils where as all the other methods live under the "garbage in garbage out" mantra , Thats why freon is better but its a new ferrari vs an old beater in terms of price so not a lot of people have experience. What was displayed at Hall of Flowers this year blows away any other oil i have tried and we have not seen anything new in a least 10 years.
 
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