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Thread: The Conversion of CBD to THC

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    The Conversion of CBD to THC 
    #1
    Under acidic conditions CBD cyclizes to THC (per wikipedia, anyway). I've often played around trying to improve the high from crappy weed. I assume that this is the result of higher levels of less desirable cannabinoids. As I recall, CBD can be up to 35% of the cannabinoids present, so getting cannabidiol to convert to THC could result in a substantially altered high. I'm not gonna bother with the math, but 5 to 10% THC by weight is fairly common, so that would mean that maybe another 5 to 15% of the weight would be CBD. You could double the potency of your weed, or better.

    I don't think this crosses into synthesis, and I don't think it's really a BDD or cannabis FF question.

    What would be a smart route to go about this? Since THC isn't water soluble, would simply soaking it in vineager for a few days, removing, drying and then (I assume) rinsing work?

    It seems like a lot of work, but for an experiment with cheap weed, it might yield interesting results.

    Or it might do nothing. Would acetic acid be acidic enough?
     

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    #2
    something I read yesterday:

    This comes from some reading i have stored and gotten around to. This is a technique that seems to have been lost or to some never found. Understanding cbd is a must for any grower as it competes with thc to fill your cannareceptors therfore blocking the effects of thc decreasing the high. That is not to say that cbd is not useful as it is for its medicinal effects. Now this comes from a reading that is a bit deaper involving different techniques to isolate cannabinoids and also in the convertion of cannibinoids to thc exp. cbd to thc. theoretically hemp made hash oil high in cbd can in different ways some harder and some easier than others. It also covers converting thc to thc acetate (athc) which is as or more potent than thc itself ect... It is an interesting read beings that it has multiple ways of doing each of these ect. I will post a link to that page in which you can read the full article, but i must note that most of these processes include practices that most either dont understand or may not be qualified to preform....

    "The potency of marijuana can be increased by about 50% simply by simmering a water slurry of the material for 2 hours. Add water as necessary to maintain the level. Cool and filter the mixture, and refrigerate the aqueous solution. Dry the leaf material at low heat. Drink the tea before smoking the marijuana. The effects are much more intense and last longer than those from the untreated leaves. The boiling water treatment isomerizes the inactive CBD, and decarboxylates THCA to THC".
     

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    #3
    My friend tells me that when he heated a mixture of honey oil and 90% sulfuric acid, then extracted it with hexane and evaporated, the produced product was much different - much less sedating, more psychedelic.
     

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    #4
    ^ That's a brilliant idea.
     

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    #5
    Vinegar is not a strong enough acid to catalyze the reaction. The cyclization involves a protonation of an alkene, vinegar just wont do that.

    Mattpsy's friend is right with using conc sulphuric acid. Refluxing the oil in this acid for atleast an hour should complete the conversion.. heating for an extended period of time (not reflux) would do it aswell, but id imagine it would take longer to get a quantitative conversion.

    This is a fairly common procedure, there are probably loads of writeups online.
     

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    #6
    Bluelighter lenses's Avatar
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    I thought THC degraded to CBN . Why does shitty dirtweed have high levels of CBN versus THC?
     

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    #7
    According to Cannabis Alchemy:

    One can reflux with a few drops of sulfuric acid to increase potency. One can also acetylate with the anhydride to increase potency. Combination of these two methods increases potency 80 fold.

    I imagine the proper protocols are out there online. perhaps the book is even in e-format. this info has been well known for a long time, 70's at least
     

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    #8
    I know Mechoulam has done a ton of work on the chemistry of compounds found in marijuana. I think he may have even done the first total synthesis of THC. In any case I'd just look for his name in the literature and you should probably find some pretty interesting finds.
     

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    #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidamnesiac
    According to Cannabis Alchemy:

    One can reflux with a few drops of sulfuric acid to increase potency. One can also acetylate with the anhydride to increase potency. Combination of these two methods increases potency 80 fold.

    I imagine the proper protocols are out there online. perhaps the book is even in e-format. this info has been well known for a long time, 70's at least

    uh-

    80-fold...?????!!!!!
     

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    #10
    just quoting the book, dont shoot the messenger. is also said to be much more psychedelic, and long lasting
     

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    #11
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    maybe they meant 8-fold or even 80% as 80-fold does not seem plausible by any conversion to active THC unless the CBD was ~80x the current present amouint of THC and/or diminsihed effects substantially in some fashion

    hell if it even was 8-fold that would be crazy
     

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    #12
    Bluelight Crew fastandbulbous's Avatar
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    You can do it with cannabinoids (ie CBD) dissolved in alcohol with a few drops of conc sulphuric acid added. After reflux & cooling, you add just enough NaOH in alcohol soln to neutralize the sulphuric acid & the sodium sulphate precipitates out, leaving an alcoholic soln of THC with a very small amount of water present.

    Of course you have to know the precise amounts of sulphuric acid used in the first place, but anybody with a bit of a chem background should be able to do all the associated maths
     

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    #13
    rolling a doober on the book now...
    it says isomerization will certainly increase potency 2X, perhaps 5-6X (I'm assuming he means with a hugely crappy ratio to start with).
    On the Adams scale, THC is a 7.4, the acetate is 14.6. So the acetylation increases 2X as well (I think it's linear).

    Ok, so I was wrong, at most it's 12X. 4X at least though, which taint too shabby...

    ^Book says 1 drop of Conc Sulf for 1g of oil...
     

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    #14
    I've got an old copy of the book, it should be translated into spanish and handed out in mexico.
     

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    #15
    alright sorry guys but some of the more complex chemical lingo is a bit much for me to follow. Can someone simplify this for me, for the lay person is there a possible way to increase the potency of some bud by converting CBD to THC, and how would you do it?
     

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    #16
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    i believe it appeasr it may be difficult on material other than the oil....
     

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    #17
    Smile
    Quote Originally Posted by bumbklatt
    something I read yesterday:

    This comes from some reading i have stored and gotten around to. This is a technique that seems to have been lost or to some never found. Understanding cbd is a must for any grower as it competes with thc to fill your cannareceptors therfore blocking the effects of thc decreasing the high. That is not to say that cbd is not useful as it is for its medicinal effects. Now this comes from a reading that is a bit deaper involving different techniques to isolate cannabinoids and also in the convertion of cannibinoids to thc exp. cbd to thc. theoretically hemp made hash oil high in cbd can in different ways some harder and some easier than others. It also covers converting thc to thc acetate (athc) which is as or more potent than thc itself ect... It is an interesting read beings that it has multiple ways of doing each of these ect. I will post a link to that page in which you can read the full article, but i must note that most of these processes include practices that most either dont understand or may not be qualified to preform....

    "The potency of marijuana can be increased by about 50% simply by simmering a water slurry of the material for 2 hours. Add water as necessary to maintain the level. Cool and filter the mixture, and refrigerate the aqueous solution. Dry the leaf material at low heat. Drink the tea before smoking the marijuana. The effects are much more intense and last longer than those from the untreated leaves. The boiling water treatment isomerizes the inactive CBD, and decarboxylates THCA to THC".

    can you please post a link!!!!!!
    I am very interested and would like to read up on this....
    or if any1 else has links to any relevant info itd be appreciated!!!!
     

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    #18
    What more do you want? That's about as simple as it gets. If you want to know how it happens, just read the rest of the thread.

    the heat isomerizes CBD to THC, and decarboxylates THCA into the active THC.

    There's nothing more??
     

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    #19
    I don't understand about drinking the tea. What we want is to increase potency of the dry weed.
    But the result is a combination of drinking tea of weed and smoking weed? Sounds confusing.
     

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    #20
    Bluelight Crew fastandbulbous's Avatar
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    It doesn't work on anything but the oil as if any sugars etc are present (as in plant material) the sulphuric acid will simply dehydrate them preferentially
     

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    #21
    Bluelighter Riemann Zeta's Avatar
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    What about the idea of just refluxing regular, unprocessed weed in dH2O at low heat (around 80-85 deg), sans acid, as mentioned above. Has anyone been able to replicate this result? I tried once about 2 years ago and I can't say that it produced any particular effects.
     

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    #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Riemann Zeta
    What about the idea of just refluxing regular, unprocessed weed in dH2O at low heat (around 80-85 deg), sans acid, as mentioned above. Has anyone been able to replicate this result? I tried once about 2 years ago and I can't say that it produced any particular effects.
    Along with some friends, I placed different qualities of weed into an oven, wrapped in foil and baked them for a period of time.

    Passed equal doses around and then collected responses.

    I posted some of my charts in CD.
     

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    #23
    Bluelight Crew fastandbulbous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Riemann Zeta
    What about the idea of just refluxing regular, unprocessed weed in dH2O at low heat (around 80-85 deg), sans acid, as mentioned above. Has anyone been able to replicate this result? I tried once about 2 years ago and I can't say that it produced any particular effects.

    You need an acid (hydrogen ion donor) to catalyse the opening of the double bond to form the pyran ring of THC, so heating in water will do nothing
     

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    #24
    I couldnt find the thread ham-milton. Do you have any idea when you may have posted it or its name?
     

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    #25
    ^ Can you reflux anything in water at 85degrees?
     

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