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How to Set Up a Your Perfect Cannabis Lab

-        The most important lab equipment and glass supplies to properly establish a cannabis extraction lab.

Whether it's laying a foundation to a house, building the frame to a hull, or arranging the setup to a new cannabis extraction lab, the initial set up determines the future success of the project. That’s why it’s so important to assemble a cannabis lab with crucial equipment and stock it with the necessary glass supplies. Here’s a guide to setting up your perfect cannabis lab.

Crucial Extraction Equipment

Not all farmers use drones to manage their crops and every dispensary will feature a unique layout and safety protocol regimen.

As with any business in the cannabis industry, each business’ approach will be unique to their needs. The same goes for cannabis labs. Depending on the type of extraction, the compounds involved, the size of the lab, and other factors, the necessary extraction equipment will vary.

Here are a few crucial pieces of extraction equipment that you might need to set up your cannabis lab.

Rosin Press

Some labs will be focused on creating popular cannabis products like tinctures and salves. For these types of easy extractions, labs may prefer to use a rosin press.

Rosin can be used to make a wide range of cannabis products. With the combination of intense pressure and heat, it’s possible to quickly remove the gooey, cannabinoid substance from kief.

A rosin press will provide both the heat and pressure, the kief will provide the rosin. Rosin presses work either through a high-pressure pneumatic system or through a hand-crank. Which one is used will depend largely on the budget and needs of the lab.

Distillation

Distillation equipment is far more complex than a simple rosin press. As a result, the products that come out of cannabis distillation are some of the best on the market. From premium oils to some of the best concentrates for dabbing, distillation is a technique on the rise.

For a lab looking to start a distillation process, they’ll likely need to a system that comes with:

  • A vacuum system
  • A heating unit
  • A chilling unit/condenser
  • Gauges and speed controllers
  • Receivers for the final product

Nano-emulsion

Before nano-emulsion technology, it was virtually impossible to extract cannabinoids into water. That’s because cannabinoids are extremely hydrophobic and repel away from water like oil.

Thankfully, nano-emulsion technology has made it possible to make the cleanest extractions possible. For this type of extraction, a lab will need a device that performs ultrasonic cavitations. This type of equipment isn’t cheap, but the end result is a clean product that goes for a premium price.

CO2

CO2 extractions are considerably cleaner than BHO or alcohol extractions since it’s a less volatile compound.

Supercritical CO2 extractions utilize extreme pressure and temperature to extract cannabinoids in much the same way that companies decaffeinate their coffee.

This type of extraction process is incredibly popular amongst cannabis labs for its versatility. Supercritical CO2 extractions can be used in vape pens, dabbing rigs, elixirs, edibles, and more.

Climate Control Equipment

Producing high-quality cannabis products means working in a suitable environment. That’s why it’s so important to control the climate of your lab. Temperature, humidity, and air purification are all examples of important pieces of climate control equipment for cannabis labs. Let’s take a quick look at them here.

Temperature

Thankfully, temperature control in a cannabis extraction lab is quite simple. It’s the same process as controlling the temperature in any other building: with a thermostat.

Humidity

Controlling the amount of water in the air will be critical to keeping employees comfortable and products in their premium state. Dry air is uncomfortable for workers and humid air may impact the quality of an extraction. While some cannabis labs may need specialized humidity control, an integrated humidity/temperature control may be ideal for others.

Air Purification

Air purification is perhaps the most important part of setting up the perfect cannabis lab. When using some extraction equipment, like supercritical CO2, a buildup of the solvent could be dangerous to employees. That’s why air purification systems for cannabis labs require:

  • Air monitoring systems
  • Alert protocols for a buildup of dangerous compounds
  • Carbon filters to scrub the air
  • Ventilation systems to keep air moving
  • And more

Glass Supplies

Of course, no cannabis lab is complete without the necessary glass supplies, and yours won’t be either! That’s why it’s important to stock up on some important pieces of equipment.

When creating your budget for glass supplies, be sure to include a substantial amount on top of what you expect to start with. Why? Glass supplies break.

Beakers are notoriously weak in the neck and people can be clumsy. Here’s a look at some glass supplies to consider when starting your cannabis lab.

Beakers

As stated, have a large beaker budget. Beakers are the pieces being moved around most often and they’re some of the most fragile pieces of equipment in a cannabis lab, even if they don’t have a slender neck. The combination results in broken beakers.

Filtering Flasks

Filtering flasks may be necessary for setting up a cannabis lab. If they are, the flasks may vary from bottle-shaped to Erlenmeyer-shaped. The size, as the shape of the bottle, will depend largely on how the cannabis lab will function. A larger lab may need a 3,000ml bottle-shaped filtering flask with a KECK assembly included. Smaller labs may need just 250ml Erlenmeyer-shaped filtering flasks.

Cleaning Equipment

Of course, a well-run cannabis lab is also well-kept. Cleaning equipment like capped reagent bottles are an important accessory to any cannabis lab. Likewise, the size of the equipment depends on the outfit of the lab.