What I Learned About my Dirty Bowl

Exactly how potent is the resin from my dirty bowl?

Smoking bowl scrapings is pretty desperate, which makes the test results all the more surprising.

Anyone who researches as part of their job can relate to this – while looking for a specific topic, you stumble upon an article about something entirely different. It catches your eye, you click, scan, click again ,and you don’t even remember what you were looking for. This accidental find triggers something in you that sends you off on a new adventure you might not have ever thought of.

My adventure was to perform a chemical analysis of resin scraped from my glass bowl.  I remember in my youth having occasions where I wanted to smoke a bowl but didn’t have a supply of bud. Of course I had been introduced to scraping resin from a bowl to smoke at some point by one of my friends and would resort to that in a pinch. Thinking back on those bowls of reclaimed resin, I recall getting a sub-par buzz, not like a nice juicy bud kind of high.

After getting pulled into an article by High Times Magazine titled ‘5 Signs You’re Are Smoking Too Much Marijuana’ by Russ Belville, which recommends not smoking these resin scrapings, I decided I had to find out what was in those bowls of resin scrapings from my youth. After all, I am a research scientist specializing in cannabis and I have my own accredited cannabis testing laboratory. Curiosity drives much of what I do.

I cleaned my bowl with a small metal knife carefully collecting the resin.  My bowl was really overdue for a cleaning, by the way.  I carefully weighed about 140 mg of resin into a collection tube and performed our standard validated cannabinoid profile analysis on the resin and ash.  After processing the data, I have to admit I am very surprised by the results.  Almost 15 percent by weight consisted of cannabinoids!

Full disclosure – this analysis only looks for the presence and amount of six cannabinoids: THC, d8 THC, CBD, CBN, THCa, and CBDa. It does not inform what other compounds are present.  Combustion of plant material results in the formation of hazardous chemicals, which are likely not favorable to good health.

I agree that smoking bowl scrapings is pretty desperate, not something you should do, and not as good as smoking proper cannabis products.  This makes the results all the more surprising. I guess it must be the elevated CBN dragging down the experience (CBN is known to cause drowsiness) but with a THC max of just over 12% I have to admit these results are unexpected.

So, hopefully someone out there has always wanted to know and now you do.  My curiosity is temporarily satisfied, but if you have an idea for an experiment, drop me a line at scottc@mcrlabs.com and if I can make it happen (no guarantees) I will.

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