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No-smell Peganum extraction Options
 
NgatiWikitoria
#1 Posted : 10/8/2018 9:09:17 AM
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When I was doing a root extract of Peganum harmala a few months ago, my kids walked around with tissues up their noses because it stank the house out so badly.
Shortly thereafter I did a seed extract, and decided to use my Airstill.
There was virtually no smell, due to the water vapor (and accompanying volatiles) condensing.

It's stainless steel, but I wouldn't use it for any strongly acidic or basic mixtures. When using it for distilling alcohol, I add sodium bicarbonate without any problems so far for a few years.
Also, do NOT use this for distilling anything except water and ethanol: a few years ago i tried using it to distill isopropyl alcohol. I very soon found out that silicone rubber (which the seal is made of) expands when in contact with isopropanol, causing gas to leak out. There was enough vapor to smell and make me panic.

Here it is:

NgatiWikitoria attached the following image(s):
20180107_173310 airstill.jpg (1,500kb) downloaded 41 time(s).
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antares
#2 Posted : 10/8/2018 9:25:24 AM

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I was under the impression that only the seeds were used. Can you elaborate a tiny bit more on how and why you use the roots and whether they are widely available for purchase?

Quite a clever way of dealing with the smell issue BTWThumbs up.
 
Jagube
#3 Posted : 10/8/2018 12:50:14 PM

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An alternative I have found:

- Use a pressure cooker for the boiling
- Instead of reducing the dilute tea (which is very smelly and bad for your walls and furniture), base it with NaOH in a glass container(s). This allows you to quickly separate and discard the bulk of the water without having to evaporate it, and a little NaOH goes a long way. It also saves energy.
 
NgatiWikitoria
#4 Posted : 10/9/2018 7:13:30 AM
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antares, I used roots because I had them - and there's bugger all info around on yields, so I wanted to find out if the literature reports of ~2% (from memory) were right.
My plants don't yield seed - too cold maybe, but I do get roots when I repot them.

I'm doing a writeup on the method and results, once I work out how to insert pics throughout the post. ATM they all appear at the end of the post. I've also sent a sample away for analysis, which I've found out will be a while in being analysed.

Jagube, that's an interesting idea. I mentioned using the airstill here because I have one and it works.
I may well try a pressure cooker next time. The biggest container that i have is a 2L flask. Does the basification make filtering easier? Or is it easy because you pressure cook whole seeds?
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Jagube
#5 Posted : 10/10/2018 12:06:27 AM

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NgatiWikitoria wrote:
I may well try a pressure cooker next time. The biggest container that i have is a 2L flask. Does the basification make filtering easier? Or is it easy because you pressure cook whole seeds?

The basification only comes *after* the filtering, and I had assumed you were going extract the harmalas a la Manske (or at least A/B), which basification is a step of anyway. The only improvement is the realization that reduction is not necessary.
Please don't drink the NaOH-basified soup, and wear eye protection and gloves when working with NaOH.

I don't actually filter, but strain through a cloth. I pressure cook whole seeds, so I only need to catch the seeds and not fine particles. After basification and discarding the bulk of the water, filtering is quick and easy.

Grinding the seeds is not necessary, the PC gets most of the alkaloids out. I'm currently doing an experiment, the goal of which is to see how much my PC extracts in the subsequent boils (1st, 2nd & 3rd). Will post the results once they're in.
 
 
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