Crafting the Concentrate You Want With the Source by ExtractCraft

The machine performs a simple physical process but you are the Grand Crafter!  The Source will perform the same process every time so the final product depends entirely on what you put into the Source and when you stop the concentration process.  I am going to share what I have learned about the What and the When to demonstrate how easy it is and that you can do this at home as well.  After reading this post you can watch this video of the Source in action, available at:


Deciding what to use for your concentrate begins with your image of the end product.  Simply choose the botanical material(s), identify how you plan to use the end product, and what final consistency you desire.  I have experimented with lavender, rose peddles, orange peel, grapefruit peal, lemon, ginger, chilies, spruce, mint, chamomile, rosemary, thyme, aged french oak chips, vanilla, coffee, cloves, and my favorite CANNABIS.  Many of these I’ve mixed with cannabis then extracted together to come up with fantastic flavors.  Dried material works best because the water content in fresh material evaporates at a much slower rate and higher teperature than alcohol leaving much of the water weight remaining in your final product.

Screen Shot 2016-02-14 at 12.10.01 PM


After the chosen materials are gathered we decide how to ‘Wash’ them.  ‘Wash’ is a simple term used to describe mixing the botanical material with the alcohol (solvent) to transfer the essential oil mater of the botanical into the alcohol solution.  It’s best to use alcohol that is 95% food-grade alcohol because it has very limited water content and is perfectly acceptable to ingest.  Ethanol is an aggressive solvent and how much plant material is extracted by it will be determined by the duration of exposure and intensity of agitation during the wash.  Quite simply, longer exposure to alcohol and stronger agitation leads to more plant material being extracted.  For example, for the oak chips the best result was letting them soak over night and vigorous agitation whereas rosemary can’t be soaked very long because of the excessive wax that will be collected.   Experimenting with different materials for different uses is a great discovery adventure, so don’t be afraid to make a mistake because they will all work out nicely.

CANNABIS wash takes some special attention to get the result you want.  To get something smooth, fragrant, and nicely smokable, a quick wash is necessary to restrict the chlorophyll and wax residue from leaking into the solution.  On the other hand, to make something like RSO and Pheonix Tears a much longer soak with more agitation is necessary.

Screen Shot 2016-02-14 at 12.29.49 PM

How much alcohol should be used to effectively extract essential oils?  I haven’t found a steadfast measuring rule by weight, but what’s worked best for me is adding enough alcohol to just cover the botanical material.  Using too much alcohol won’t hurt anything, it will just require more time to evaporate the extra alcohol.

At this point most of the work is done.  All that’s left is to strain the alcohol solution from the solid material into the metal cup used by the Source.  The solid plant material does not go in the machine.  Metal strainers, silk screens, unbleached coffee filters, and Buchner funnels all work well to different degrees of filtering efficiency.  How throughly the solution is strained dictates how much particle residue will remain in the final product.  For cooking edibles and oral meds some plant material is fine depending on your preference.  For smoking in vape pens or doing dabs thorough and repeated filtering is required and makes the finest product.

Screen Shot 2016-02-14 at 12.42.05 PM

After straining the alcohol solution into the cup, inserting the cup into the Source, and starting the machine, all that’s left to do is wait for the essential oil in the cup to reach the consistency you desire.  The final consistency can be a tincture, cannabis oil, wax or all the way to a concentrated hard resin.  Simply turn the machine off and remove your creation.

Screen Shot 2016-02-14 at 12.57.19 PM

Toward the end of the process things begin to change quickly so it’s important to carefully monitor the progress and stop at the desired consistency.  The good news is that if the material overcooks it can be reconstituted by simply adding a small amount alcohol, and using the machine to condense the alcohol out again.

You are going to love experimenting with the process and really enjoy your crafting creations!

Please leave questions and comments, I love talking about this stuff.  You can also email me at   Thanks for checking me out!



23 thoughts on “Crafting the Concentrate You Want With the Source by ExtractCraft

    1. Hi Brandy! Getting the shatter consistency is the hardest thing to achieve in making the concentrates. To begin with you have to make sure you have a really clean wash, meaning you want pretty much no green (or as little as possible) in your alcohol solution. The more green the more waxes and chlorophyll present which will prevent the crystallization required for shatter. To achieve this make sure to freeze the alcohol and cannabis before washing then wash for only 1-3 minutes keeping temp as low as possible (see the QWET on for full explanation). Secondly, as you asked, how long do you ‘cook’ it? It needs to go until any bubbling is completely finished and it is quite thick. This poses one problem, as you probably noticed when the concentrate gets to the heavy concentrate consistency it becomes more difficult to scrape from the aluminum cup. So the trick here is to stop the process one time when the concentrate is a thick oil but still viscus enough to cleanly remove from the aluminum cup and transfer to a silicone cup. I use a food-grade small cupcake silicone that fits easily into the aluminum cup. I use the small cupcake cup because it allows good surface area and easy removal. So we have taken the concentrate out of the aluminum cup at a thick oil consistency, placed the thick oil in the silicon cup, placed the silicon cup inside the aluminum cup and put back inside the Source (good idea to wipe/clean the aluminum cup before putting the silicone cup inside it so it doesn’t stick). Lastly, start the Source and let it ‘cook’ until the bubbles completely stop, remove from the Source, and let set and cool for up to 24hr. It will smoke the same if you use right away but it will take a little while to harden.

      One word of caution, the longer you cook it more heat is being exposed for a longer time so if it is overdone too much you will lose more terpenes. It’s a little bit of a balancing act but not something you have to stress out about too much.

      I hope this helps and let me know if you have any other questions. Please let me know how it ends up for you!

    1. A tincture is the original form of medication that is essentially a medicated alcohol solution. One of the most famous cannabis tinctures is the Green Dragon which you can find lots of information about around the web. When processing your extraction it begins as a very weak tincture and as the alcohol evaporates it becomes a more potent tincture, more potent, oil, sap, wax, and finally a shatter or hard resin. They all have the same cannabis extract in them but with varying degrees concentration.

  1. Hello! I want to make oil to vape!!! What do you recommend? Temperature of the oil in the machine and then what? Mix it with vg and PG? Or can you recommend something else??? Thank you in advance 😉

  2. I am still a bit confused on the matter of decarbing prior to extraction. Using the Source for distillation, does the cannabis need to be decarbed prior to wash if it is intended to be used without heating of the final product? For example RSO?

    1. When using the Source you will need to decarb either the cannabis prior to extraction, or the oil after the extraction. The Source works at very low temperatures, close to 100F so little to no decarb will occur while making oil in the Source. This is much different to other methods, where the temperatures are higher like in a rice cooker and such. The Source is designed to cause as little damage as possible to the contents of a botanical extraction and give people absolute control of how the extraction is performed. If you want activated THC for an RSO extraction you decarb before or after. If you want THC-A for your child’s anti-convulsive meds then you don’t decarb and you don’t have to worry about the machine converting the THC-A to THC either.

    1. A little bit of clove in your wash makes for an old school flavor. The cloves are strong so you have to take it easy on them. I use terpenes for the most part. You can use ecig flavorings as well if you are looking for deep flavors. If you plan on making them yourself, just make sure you do the research to make sure whatever concentrate you are making is ok to vaporize and inhale.

      1. at which point would one use the ecig flavors? i am still researching the terpenes and how to use them. i am looking ideally for a vape with no vgpg

      2. i am just now researching this.. i ordered my machine and it gets here next week ..this was the only thread i have seen. I will look around


    Thank you so much for these articles, which are a true labor of love!! You’ve made it very clear that The Source is a versatile machine and that it will make it much easier for me to really fine tune my final products.

    I’d like to know what you think of this idea: for the quick wash, I would use a little more alcohol in a larger container to allow all the good stuff to be infused perhaps more easily? If there’s more space and alcohol to permeate all the nooks and crannies? I understand that it will take longer to evaporate the alcohol, but this seems inconsequential if the infusion takes place a little more efficiently.

    I love making tincture and I want to improve my techniques! ;-}

    Stay blissful,

    1. Thank you for the kind words. The amount of alcohol can be detrimental to yields if there is insufficient volume for sure. The ethanol can actually hold quite a bit in the solution, like 10:1 or more. However, the problem is declining pick up efficiency as pickup progresses especially when you are using very cold temperatures. An important thing is to agitate the alcohol a bit periodically to move fresh alcohol in and out of the nooks and crannies and avoid a boundary layer of ethanol that may be less efficient as it picks up.

Leave a Reply