Bubble Bag Instructions
IMPORTANT TO KNOW - Using Bubble Bags is really and easy and fun process, although these instructions look long and complex, making high quality bubble is really simple and the whole process to do one batch takes an hour! That time includes draining your bags, so make sure you understand how to drain them properly! If you use the Bubble Now machine it automates the whole mixing process and makes it even more easy and simple. We find everyone loves to experiment and find their own favourite way.
- A bucket the same size of your Bubble Bag kit
(ie. 5 gallon / 20 litre kit = 5 gallon / 20 litre bucket).
- Large wooden spoon
- Electric cake mixer (the kind with two beaters)
- Ice (enough to fill the bucket, as it will melt during mixing)
- Tea towel or wash cloth
- metal spoon (to remove the final product from the screen)
Pick out any stems or branches in the leaf material as they could potentially damage the bags.
Place each bag (one at a time) into the bucket, starting with the 25 micron bag and ending with the 220 micron bag.
Fill the bucket 2/3 full with cold water.
Add plant matter to 220 micron bag. Many people find that frozen plant matters gives them better results however tests have shown that you actually only want to have your plant matter at 1 or 2 degrees above freezing (zero degrees Celsius). The reason for this is that when you freeze your plant matter it causes the trichomes to crystallize and rupture, tearing them apart and making them unable to be properly separated in their true individual trichome sizes.
Add ice cubes to the 220 micron bag until the bag is almost full to the top.
Mix material in the 220 micron bag with the wooden spoon, until the plant matter, water and ice cubes are fully mixed. Then mix this mixture with the electric cake mixer for 20 minutes. Continually add more ice as it melts to keep the mixture as cold as possible. Be careful when using the electric cake mixer, use only in the centre of the bag. Try not to hit the side walls or bottom mesh material of the bag. Excessive wear on the sidewalls and bottom mesh will greatly decrease your bags life span.
An alternative method is to put all the Bubble Bags into a bucket as described above but to also have a second bucket in which you do all your mixing of ice, water and plant matter. In this bucket you can mix more vigorously using the electric cake mixer or using an electric drill with a paint mixer bit. This way you do not have to worry about hitting the side walls or bottom and it makes mixing a lot easier and more relaxed. After mixing for 20 minutes you then carefully, slowly and gently pour the bucket of mixture into the bucket with the Bubble Bags.
However another alternative method that has been proven to produce the most superior results is to mix as slow and gently as possible using a big wooden spoon. This less vigorous method has been shown to produce the highly sought after soft and pliable full melt final product that people desire.
And yet an another method that is gaining a lot of popularity is to use a Bubble Now machine to do the mixing for you and to just let the mixed slurry drain into the bags which are already set up in a bucket. Watch this video with a great bubble maker named Frency Cannoli to see him doing this great method.
After mixing let bucket with bags and mixture sit for 20 - 30 minutes. This lets all the heavy trichomes sink to the bottom of the bags where the filters are and separate from the light plant matter that stays floating on top of the water.
Now we are getting into the steps where you are going to have to start draining the individual bags. It is very IMPORTANT you learn this technique correctly. This is really the one and only area I have ever heard any customer have a problem with the Bubble Bags and that is simply because they do not know the proper technique. If you just lift the bag out of the bucket, especially if you have been using a specimen of plant that is very rich or heavy in resin, the screen of the bag will be so coated in resin that the water will not flow through. You will be lifting a very heavy bag of water. Not only is this bad for the bag as you are putting a lot of strain on the stitching but the bag will take hours and hours to drain as only little drips will drain out. This is what a lot of people do and they think that You could stick your hand in there and they think that making bubble takes hours per bag, when it should only take 1 hour for the entire batch. The solution is to gather the top of the bag up into a neck and hold it tight between your hands or fists. Pull the bag up and out of the bucket but still above the other bags that are still in the bucket. So now all the water is trapped in the bag with you necking it at the top. Give the bag several really good up and down jerking motions while holding it tight at the neck and all the water will drain out through the screen and into the bags/bucket below in just a few seconds.
Slowly pull the 220 micron bag out, let the water drain from the bag you pull out into the bag below it. The leaf material that remains behind in the 220 micron bag is basically waste and can be thrown away, although it has been proven that it is still highly viable for cooking with or you can always run it through the Bubble Bags a second time to get every bit of resin possible.
Slowly pull the 190 micron bag out, let the water drain from the second bag into the 170 micron bag.
Pull each bag slowly and make sure they drain completely. Although Bubble Bags are made of high quality materials and are of high quality construction, pulling a bag quickly will add increased stress to the bags stitching, decreasing the bags life span. Each bag will take slightly longer to drain, however it is not important to let the bags drain slowly otherwise you will be spending all day, letting the bags drain, drip by drip. The trick to making the bags drain in seconds is you want to gather the top of the bag into your hands, lift it out of the bucket and give it several *very quick* up and down jerking motions and the entire bag will drain in seconds. I know this was just said above, but it is important to repeat.
Lay out the tea towel or face cloth, open up the 25 micron pressing screen onto the tea towel
Using the dull edge of a metal spoon. gently scrape the final product off the screen and dump it out onto the pressing screen. Never use a knife as you may cut the screen material.
Turn the bag that you just scraped inside out and rinse off the screen in the water that is still in the bucket. This way you won’t waste any of the resin that was left behind, stuck in the holes of the screen, instead it will be rinsed off and collected in the next bag.
Fold the pressing screen and tea towel in half, thus sandwiching the resin in-between them. Gently, but firmly press this “sandwich” with the palm of your head, a rolling pin, book or other heavy object. The remaining moisture will be squished out through the pressing screen and be absorbed into the towel. This final product is now ready for use. See the helpful hints below on how to store your resin for the long term.
Repeat steps Eight and Nine for each bag until you have completed the filtration process for all bags.
Helpful Hints for getting the most out of your Bubble Bags…
Cold is they key to why the system works, the colder the better, so if you can, freeze your leaf before hand, use very cold water and always make sure there is plenty of ice and a constant supply of chunky ice in the mixture as you are mixing.
Mixing with a electric cake beater will yield better results than mixing by hand with say a big wooden spoon, but either will work. You can always run the same batch of leaf more than once to see if you can get more out of it.
The whole process should take an hour. Mix for 20 mins, let sit for 20 mins, then pull the bags out one by one.
IMPORTANT – If you are using the 80 litre (20 gallon bags), be sure to install some sort of tap or spigot at the bottom of your mixing container, so that you don’t have to lift the whole giant bag out while it is filled with water, which is a lot of weight and not only is it hard to do and bad for your back, but all that water weight could rip your bag.
If you do not intend to use all of the final product right away and want to keep it around, you need to dry it all the way out so it does not mold. To do this, take each grade of final product and put it onto a piece of thick cardboard, chop it up as finely as possible and let it sit for 24 hours. The cardboard will draw the remaining water out of the final product and you will have a very dry final product that can be stored in a glass jar for many years.
If you find the final product too hard and chunky after drying, what you can do is turn it into a powder using an electric coffee grinder. It can then stay a powder, otherwise using heat and pressure you can turn it into a nice putty like substance.
If your first batch does not turn out, or does not yield as much results as you expected, do not worry, for some people there is a learning curve and you have to do a batch or two, in order to understand how to do it right. You can always rerun the same plant material.