You’ve heard of THC, but have you heard of THC Diamonds? The crystalline form of THC, known as Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, or THCA is one of the most pure forms of the cannabinoid available on the market today.
THCA is actually an inactivated cannabinoid, therefore rendering it non-intoxicating. The cannabinoid however, can be found in fresh or raw cannabis and can be activated through decarboxylation.
In this article we’ll be covering everything you need to know about THCA diamonds and their role in cannabis culture, including how to use this potent cannabis concentrate.
THCA Compared to THC
Before comparing the two, it will be important to fully understand the dynamics behind each cannabinoid. Although THCA and THC may sound very similar, they actually possess a few key distinctions from one another.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the star player of the cannabinoids found in marijuana. THC is the main constituent in the cannabis high, responsible for producing many of marijuana’s psychoactive effects.
Capable of producing sensations of euphoria and relaxation, THC has been used to treat many conditions such as insomnia and chronic pain.
Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THC-A or THCA), on the other hand, is one of the non-psychoactive cannabinoids found in marijuana. At the moment, studies on the cannabinoid are fairly limited, although preliminary research and anecdotal evidence both indicate that the medicinal utility of THCA has the potential to be much greater as the industry moves forward and expands.
If you’ve ever gotten desperate and tried to outright eat your bud (we hope you haven’t) you were probably disappointed to find out that it didn’t get you high. That’s because raw bud is mainly comprised of THC-A. THC-A must first be converted to THC in order to experience the high.
When cannabis is dried, over time, THC-A will slowly convert to THC and when raw cannabis is heated, it undergoes a process called decarboxylation. Decarboxylation is known to greatly expedite the conversion of THCA to THC, which is why many cannabis products must be heated before use in order to experience their psychoactive effects.
What Are THC Diamonds?
As the name suggests, THC-A diamonds are crystalline structures of THC in their purest form. Their appearance is akin to granulated sugar as they are usually relatively small in size with a majority of them falling in the range of being only a few millimeters wide.
With that being said, the actual size of the crystals is not indicative of the actual quality or potency of the ingredients used. In terms of their color, they are largely translucent and can possess a glistening golden amber-like tint if left to soak in terp sauce. Terp sauce is a liquid that contains a high concentration of terpenes, the compounds responsible for giving many plants and fruits their unique aromas and flavors.
As pure as they are, THC diamonds carry a composition of 99 percent pure THC-A with the remainder being a blend of terpenes and other cannabinoids.
Due to the composition of THC-A diamonds, there isn’t a full range of flavors to experience as they do contain a very small amount of terpenes.
Although mostly flavorless and odorless, this is offset by their raw potency. Luckily, for those who enjoy both the effects and flavors of cannabis, THC-A can be left to soak in terp sauce or High Terpene Full Spectrum Extract (HTFSE) to give them some extra character.
While THC diamonds are non-psychoactive on their own, exposure to heat activates the cannabinoid, converting it into THC.
Is THCA legal?
Though marijuana is still listed as a schedule 1 drug in many regions in North America, THC-A has not been explicitly mentioned or classified. Consult your location’s laws and regulations regarding cannabis to determine whether THCA is legal or not.
How Are THC Diamonds Made?
The process of creating THCA diamonds is very similar to the way many solvent-based concentrates are made, however, what separates them from the rest is the difference in their method of extraction.
Like many other solvent-based concentrates, extracting THCA diamonds is achieved by using liquid solvents such as butane or propane in a closed-loop system to draw out any active compounds from the trichome gland in the plant material. While many solvent-based extractions rely on removing the solvent as soon as possible, the opposite holds true when making THC diamonds.
Rather than completely removing the solvents from the closed-loop system, approximately 10-15 percent of the solvent is left, resulting in a supersaturated solution of the THCA cannabinoid.
Supersaturating the THCA in a solution that is rich in terpenes while simultaneously steadily removing the solvent allows for the crystallization of the THCA. The average timeframe for production can fall within the range of a few days to several weeks.
Another popular technique is to take regular, uncured live resin and to simply leave it in a container over time so separation can occur. This separation happens between the liquified terpene layer on top and the crystal layer on the bottom. This process can take a few weeks and is the most widely utilized diamond making technique.
Essentially, diamonds are live resin that’s had time to separate into its constituent parts. In some ways, it can be argued that this is not entirely a new concentrate in the world of cannabis concentrates since live resin has been around for quite a while already, but many do argue that the addition of terp sauce is enough for diamonds to be classified as a concentrate of its own.
How to Use THC Diamonds
Since THCA diamonds are not intoxicating on their own, consuming them raw will lead to wasted product. Instead opt for exposure to heat as the decarboxylation will activate the crystals and convert them to THC, the active ingredient in marijuana responsible for the fizzy euphoria experienced during the high.
With that being said, THCA diamonds can be consumed with a number of different setups such as vaporization via dab rig, electronic rig, or vaporizer pen. Any method involving the diamonds being decarboxylated will suffice.
Due to their strength, THCA diamonds are not for the faint of heart. It is recommended to gain experience and build a tolerance to cannabis before attempting to consume THCA diamonds or else you might just green out!
New users may be at risk of experiencing unwanted side effects such as extreme discomfort and nausea. Worst yet, newcomers may fall victim to a green out due to the sheer potency of the diamonds.
Cannabis concentrates are constantly evolving and some of them, like these diamonds, pop up seemingly out of nowhere.
Available with or without a side of terp sauce, these THC rocks are potent, versatile and extremely easy to use. We recommend those who are interseted in trying these diamonds to purchase a producct that’s suspended in terp sauce for an incredibly tasty (and potent) experience!
With cannabis concentrates being a slightly mysterious topic for most, and the lack of research to back it up, we hope this article helped to give you some insight to the more intricate delicacies of the cannabis world.