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View Full Version : Mescaline Extraction (good salt- NOT brown shit)


General Butt.Naked
05-13-2009, 07:48 PM
I tried posting in the drug forum, but a lot of people were dicks about it, so hopefully I'll find some more helpful people here. Ill copy/paste part of it, so that I won't have to re-type all that, but the general gist is this:

I've been getting pot and stuff for an older guy who works for a nation-wide lab. He's kind of on the hippie-ish side. He told me he can get pretty much anything-equpiment or chemical- that one would need to make/extract a drug.
He also has a friend in the lab who grows what he called "five star" cactus...which I assume to be Sa Pedro or Peruvian Torch.

Here's from the other forum:

Since my question is apparently too vague, I suppose I'll try to narrow the field a bit. Lets go with a mescaline extraction. As far as I understand, its a pretty basic alkaloid extraction, and the purity of your final salt depends on the quality of solvents and such that you can obtain. My consigliere mentioned that he had a sort of hippie chemist colleage who has a large area of his back yard dedicated to trichocerious pachanoi, which I believe is the peruvian torch. I know the mescaline content is low in this cactus especially- anywhere from .5- 2%, but with enough of it, I should be able to produce something.

So lets go with that- what equipment would I need? My friend said he has access to most chemicals. The only catch is that many of them are industrial grade. They use them to cut low Ph shit, so its possible that the purity isn't great. He said in the past week hes sold barrels of hydrochloric, sulfanic, e.tc. I told him to start, I was pretty sure that some good quality sodium hydroxide would be good to have. Ideas? And then, would it be possible to rinse and refine the finished product enough so that it didn't really matter that the chemicals were industrial grade? What specialized things would I need to deal with strong acids and caustics?


CaspeR

Also, as was mentioned in another mescaline extraction thread, I watched a video on google video (which im sure is the one the others referred to) in which the person used what seemed to be a very shitty technique using 2 liter bottles, Hcl acid with no gloves, and ended up with brown, shitty looking powder.

If possible, Id like to actually be able to understand the process, instead of just doing, it. SO might someone be able to very basically explain it to me? Second, how do I end up with a crystalline salt instead of that brown shit? What should I tell my friend to obtain from the laboratory? Does it matter that the chemicals mght be industrial grade, and not laboratory grade? Are there any recions/fumes that I need to beware of? What molar (?) should teh acids be, and what strengths of all acids, bases, solvents do I need? Is there something better than xylene/sodium hydroxide/Hcl that I can use to produce a finer end product?

I'd just like to be able to understand what Im doing, and do it the right way...at least as professionally as possible, while not being in an actual lab setting. And Id also like to add that I do not have much chemistry experience, but im eager to learn, and as I understand it, alkaloid extractions are fairly straightforward.

Thanks for your help, I look forward to your responses, and Ill post more if I think of any other questions.



CaspeR

Von Bass
05-13-2009, 07:57 PM
With regards to reagent purity, if its 95%+, you should be alright, until you get to the recrystallisation, washing & ideally NP extraction stage, those are the solvents/reagents that you want to be nice and clean. The point being that these steps are taken for removal of impurity, and in general biological/organic sources are technically so impure anyway that you need not worry. Also, industrial grade is probably what you're aiming for, reagent grade is fucking expensive.

Search and look around for an acid base tech that you like the look of, there's plenty of them out there, all really following the same basic structure. If you end up with brown gunk, in general that just means you need to recrystallise from solution, something that is not too hard to learn, its just something that'll take a little time.

I'm currently far too fucked to type anything more that might be useful, my severe apologies. Google around until you find a decent extraction, I'll imagine erowid might be a good place to start.

incorporated
05-13-2009, 08:11 PM
I'm not explaining the chemistry behind an A/B extraction, the information is out there to anyone willing to google. However, swii had success with FoaF (Friend of a Friend's) tek, followed by recrystallization in MEK (a la Tramp on WD). If you have any specific questions, feel free to shoot, but I don't think I'm alone in not wanting to thoroughly explain an A/B.

Good luck, have fun, and use a BUNCH of dried cactus SKINS (yes, you have to use pliers to pull out the thorns, and then a knife to skin the green from the white underlayer). The target compound is present, as you said, in very minute amounts. Nothing is more frustrating than doing the whole procedure and recovering an amount of needle crystals that wouldn't even cover the surface of one side of a dime, trust me. =\

General Butt.Naked
05-13-2009, 09:08 PM
Okay...Im doing a bit more research. Theres one decent page, but it still leaves a wide variety to personal choice. I'd like to know what, Ideally, I should use, if I want a very fine end product.

As I understand it, the basic idea is this: Most of the plant based compounds that someone like myself would be interested in extracting are, for the most part, basic (does that mean that bases contain nitrogen necessarily?). So when you take your plant material, and add an acid (in this case HCl), it becomes water soluble. So at this point you add water and agitate, and the alkaloids would be transferred from the plant matter, into the water. If you add a base again, the mixture becomes not neutral, but basic, and so the alkaloids are so longer soluble in water. Here, you add a (non-polar/polar?) solvent, and agitate the mixture, at which point the alkaloids will move into the solvent...

thats pretty much where im at.

Im trying to understand the solvents, and where they come into play, and what steps I need to take to have a good final product.

Also, in the video I watched, the person's first step was to add acid. However in the method Im looking at, he says to add methanol first (solvent?).

http://www.lycaeum.org/drugs.old/other/extraction/extract1.html

E: So would sodium hydroxide and hydrochloric acid, and then dichloromethane/chloroform or xylene work? I want to maximize my quality while minimizing the threat to my limbs and face.

CaspeR

incorporated
05-13-2009, 11:15 PM
First of all: here is the extraction I mentioned. (http://www.thenook.org/archives/tek/simplextract.html) Complete with pictures. Now, on to your inquiries...

Most of the plant based compounds that someone like myself would be interested in extracting are, for the most part, basic (does that mean that bases contain nitrogen necessarily?).
Correct (until the parentheses). Plant alkaloids are bases of the nitrogen-containing compounds in the plant, you can kind of see the word alkaline (a synonym for basicity) in the word. These are generally insoluble in water (a polar solvent, more on this later) and soluble in nonpolars (like hydrocarbon solvents). Bases don't have to contain nitrogen, however nitrogen is good at accepting protons, the definition of a base, according to the Bronsted-Lowry theory (which, for this discussion, is as good as any), eg. NaOH is a base, and despite having an N in there, doesn't have nitrogen. You add water+a base+xylene(nonpolar) and then your powdered cactus skins, this basically pulls the alkaloids from the plant material into the nonpolar. Then...

So when you take your plant material, and add an acid (in this case HCl), it becomes water soluble.

Yep. The base is converted to a salt. This has an extra proton and can undergo hydrogen bonding with water (which explains the solubility).

The extraction I gave you could be followed by a recrystallization (I'd bet youtube has a video for this) in MEK. Should yield nice pointy shards and make you grin from ear-to-ear. Honestly, though, the stuff that foaf ended with would be sufficient for most all purposes, you'll just have to bump the dose up a bit to compensate for impurities.

As I said before, good luck! It's worth it! :D

HeaT
05-14-2009, 02:14 AM
Chop cactus thoroughly

Cover with pH 11 water/NaOH solution

Let sit for a day, occasionally shaking

Add nonpolar solvent (I like xylene) and tilt jug back and forth, dissolving anything that has separated from the plant material (mescaline!)

Separate xylene from water, using a turkey baster or by using the bag separatory funnel method (or use a giant separatory funnel..)

If the layers arent well separated, add more base (a very strong liquid solution... not srystals) or salt (again, a solution. no crystals) until it separates

Evaporate xylene layer.

Scrape crystals, cover in water and add a tiny bit of baking soda.

If any of the mescaline dissolves, whoops. you're fucked. Let evaporate

If no mescaline dissolves, filter out the crystals

take said crystals, dissolve in a dilute (very dilute) solution of your choice of acid.

Let evaporate.

Enjoy.

What are those metallic looking crystals on erowid? HCl? I bet every single one of you knows what I mean.... they're beautiful.

General Butt.Naked
05-14-2009, 02:45 AM
You guys are SOOOOOOOOO much more helpful than the drug forum motherfuckers. Thank you x a million. Ill be coming here alot more often. Its a little hard to absorb when im kinda high like this, but Im willing to put in the time to learn. I never was a math/science kid- more a writer/lit type. So Im glad you guys can break it down a little for me. Hopefully this guy has enough cactus that I can have some extra, and maybe mail a dose to all those who've tutored me in the ways of what is sure to be Nobel Prize winning science.
Yeah the erowid crystals are what im looking to do. In any other situation, Id settle for less, but when an opportunity like this is given to me, and I have access to pretty much anything, I want to go for the best. So hydrochloric acid would be the best acid to use producing mescaline hydrochloride? And if one were to use sulfuric acid, it would produce mescaline sulfide? Does what type and grade of acid/base you use affect the shape, color and structure of the crystals? The general consensus, as I understand it, is that Hcl is perfect for this kind of thing. So is there a better base than NaOH that would produce better results?

Also, after the xylene evap, you say to add a bit of baking soda. This is for the final basification/acid(ation) right? Because as I remember from chemistry (I think?) the result of an acid/base reaction is a salt precipitate? So the mescaline crystals in this case are that precipitate. But why would the mescaline dissolve? I want to understand that part so I DONT let that happen...

Thank you guys so much.

E: and so bases (alkaloids) dont necessarily CONTAIN nitrogen, yet they are a part of the compounds in a plant that DO.

CaspeR

Ford Prefect
05-14-2009, 06:21 AM
And if one were to use sulfuric acid, it would produce mescaline sulfide?

Mescaline sulfate. Sulfides are compounds containing sulfur in it's lowest oxidation state, sulfates are salts of sulfuric acid. Yous making a salt.

'n NaOH should be a more than suitable base. It and KOH are pretty fucking excellent chemicals.

dedraic
05-14-2009, 04:37 PM
A friend finally got to a white salt yesterday. The tea was made from San Pedro, then filtered through a funnel with a cotton ball stuck in the spout to remove left over cactus snot. After this, lye was added to the solution until it separated into two layers. This was again poured through the funnel into a separate jar. When the filter clogged, vinegar was added and run through into a separate glass. This process is quite lengthy, and a Buchner funnel would likely aid in the filtration immensely.The final solution was evaporated slowly on the stove and left in the sun for a couple of hours to dry.

This resulted in off-white crystals, which were then washed with acetone to yield a final product of mostly white, crystalline mescaline acetate(and assorted T. Pachnoi alkaloids, I'm sure). Roughly 150mg of this was taken intranasally followed by around 300mg orally. The doses weren't weighed, due to a lack of scale on my friend's part, but he said the ride was pretty strong at that dosage.

So it looks like a fairly pure product can be achieved without using valuable/hazardous non-polar solvents(except for the acetone wash). I've read somewhere that simply soaking the biomass in diethyl ether will pull the alkaloids from the cactus as well, but I can't vouch for it's efficacy.

incorporated
05-14-2009, 07:47 PM
A friend finally got to a white salt yesterday. The tea was made from San Pedro, then filtered through a funnel with a cotton ball stuck in the spout to remove left over cactus snot. After this, lye was added to the solution until it separated into two layers. This was again poured through the funnel into a separate jar. When the filter clogged, vinegar was added and run through into a separate glass. This process is quite lengthy, and a Buchner funnel would likely aid in the filtration immensely.The final solution was evaporated slowly on the stove and left in the sun for a couple of hours to dry.

This resulted in off-white crystals, which were then washed with acetone to yield a final product of mostly white, crystalline mescaline acetate(and assorted T. Pachnoi alkaloids, I'm sure). Roughly 150mg of this was taken intranasally followed by around 300mg orally. The doses weren't weighed, due to a lack of scale on my friend's part, but he said the ride was pretty strong at that dosage.

So it looks like a fairly pure product can be achieved without using valuable/hazardous non-polar solvents(except for the acetone wash). I've read somewhere that simply soaking the biomass in diethyl ether will pull the alkaloids from the cactus as well, but I can't vouch for it's efficacy.

I'm not so sure I believe this. Why would the addition of a base to water cause two immiscible layers to form? Also, it's pretty unlikely that you'd get anything but brownish gunk, especially without a nonpolar step. 150mg of anything remotely pure, especially intranasally, would be a fucking strong dose; 300mg to follow, again, assuming reasonable purity, is even more nuts (unless there's a big tolerance you didn't mention). You may be telling the truth, what your friend told you was the truth or a lie. I'd bet on anything but the first option, though.

dedraic
05-14-2009, 08:03 PM
I'd have no reason to lie about it, people who spread misinformation piss me off quite a bit. It was allowed to sit overnight with a layer of heptane, but it didn't color or do anything that indicated it was working and it had been siphoned off and forgotten about. That may have caused the layering, but it did not occur again today, though the rest of the project seems to be going the same way. I was still rather out of it this morning when I typed that up. There is definitely a freebase precipitate formed in solution however.

The procedure is being run again today(with the rest of the same batch of tea), so I'll post my "friend's" results. I do have a decent tolerance at this point, having used varying dosages of less pure extracts quite often over the past couple of months. But 450mg is hardly a heroic dosage, especially considering it's doubtful the salts are all mescaline. T. Pachnoi contains a big clusterfuck of alkaloids. The trip was pretty strong, considering it normally takes a gram or two of the dirtier extracts to get decent visuals. I may just be a hard-head to mescaline.

incorporated
05-14-2009, 09:18 PM
The heptane is definitely why you saw two layers and your freebases would be present within this layer, so if you threw it out or forgot about it or whatever, I don't see how you'd get anything that's active.

Also, you won't observe any change in color to recognize it's absorbed the freebases - it just has.

Edit: You say you added heptane to your tea again today and didn't get two distinct layers? Now I'm 100% certain that can't be right.

Also, if you really do have something, after the 'tone wash, recrystallize in MEK. I cannot stress how beautiful the result is.

General Butt.Naked
05-14-2009, 09:27 PM
Sulfate..thank you sir.

Wow. Im suprised that your friend got that quality end product using vinegar, and like the previous poster said, using the nonpolar solvent steps. Ill probably try to go through the entire process just to be safe, but its interesting to think about. The site I was looking at made suggestions to use a soxhlet apparatus, buchner funnel, sidearm flask or venturi pump as possible candidates. If The acid im using is strong enough, I dont think im gonna need to heat it, but I think that ill need to be creative to filter the goop. My experience drinking a Big-Gulp sized glass of that shit was none too pleasant, so im well aware of that consistency. Reeeeaallly difficult to work with, Id imagine.

And I guess to increase efficiency, I should allow time to dry the cactus? I didn't think it really mattered, but I think I read that drying and grinding to a powder better breaks down the cell membranes and gets at what I need better. From what you guys have explained, if I choose to do the final refining steps, you lose a lot of the product. Still...i think its worth it to have something pretty to look at, and not be parachuting dirt.


The soxhlet apparatus looks like its just for defatting a compund, be it animal or plant. which, in the case of cactus, I guess would be helpful. I saw on some pages that they used the buchner funnel for distillation as well as for filtration. So would you also be able to use this as a more efficient version of a separatory funnel? Nevermind- The solvents im going to use are most likely going to be volatile. I don't think Ill do any heating of those. :p

So..Sodium Hydroxide, Hydrochloric Acid, weaker acids and bases- either vinegar and salt or dilute Hcl and NaOh , buchner funnel, sidearm flasks, (2) large non-reactive sealable container, ph paper, distilled water, a pyrex baking dish and polar/ non-polar solvents. I guess one of those is xylene, what's the other? Methanol? Anything Im missing?


CaspeR

General Butt.Naked
05-14-2009, 09:32 PM
And MEK is like the acetone wash people mentioned, but even better, I assume? For better crystal formation and clarity?


CaspeR

incorporated
05-14-2009, 09:32 PM
Man, go read the link I gave. It even has pictures. You should have no questions after that.

You dry the cactus to make it easier to pulverize and you pulverize it in order to increase surface area. More surface area = easier for alkaloids to transfer out of the cactus and into solution.

You can do an acetone wash (pour acetone over your crystals, through a funnel) and then recrystallize in MEK (google video "recrystallization"). MEK = Methyl ethyl ketone. It's available at the hardware store. Dry it with epsom salt. This is done by sticking the epsom salt in an oven for an hour or so and then adding to the MEK and agitating. (MgSO4 will absorb the water that's in with the MEK.)

General Butt.Naked
05-14-2009, 09:37 PM
Sorry G...I didn't see the link. ANd I will lokk at that video. Thanks a lot. I guess Ill let this rest for a little bit, and bump when my scientist buddy gets back from his fishing trip. Thanks a lot.

E: Inc, Is that pile in your link what the final product is supposed to look like? Or is that before the MEK recrystallization? I thought It was supposed to look like sharp rock candy...and with a slight yellow tinge?


CaspeR

incorporated
05-14-2009, 09:42 PM
He didn't recrystallize. I don't even think he gave it a wash. He wasn't in the same state of mind as you, undoubtedly. Cleanliness is next to Godliness, though, so go ahead and watch that vid and practice with stuff at your house.

dedraic
05-14-2009, 09:47 PM
The heptane is definitely why you saw two layers and your freebases would be present within this layer, so if you threw it out or forgot about it or whatever, I don't see how you'd get anything that's active.

Also, you won't observe any change in color to recognize it's absorbed the freebases - it just has.

Edit: You say you added heptane to your tea again today and didn't get two distinct layers? Now I'm 100% certain that can't be right.

Also, if you really do have something, after the 'tone wash, recrystallize in MEK. I cannot stress how beautiful the result is.

The soup had been acidified before I added the heptane, so the alkaloids should have been in a salt form in the water. I'm working from the tea made after the heptane defatting. I'm guessing it was just a bit of heptane left behind that caused it to separate.

I feel like an idiot for not thinking of that(the color not changing), and it'll make the rest of this process much, much easier. Too bad I don't have any access to MEK right now.

General Butt.Naked
05-14-2009, 09:50 PM
It says that MEK is regulated as a precursor. What does that mean in terms of obtaining or buying it? Do you just need a drivers license or something?

E: Also, the google recrystallization video says that you need to keep your solvent hot after you dissolve your stuff in it. Thats only because its water right? i wouldn't have to heat my solvent were I to use acetone or MEK?

And soooo... as your crystals form, the impurities are left in the solvent?

incorporated
05-15-2009, 12:23 AM
It says that MEK is regulated as a precursor. What does that mean in terms of obtaining or buying it? Do you just need a drivers license or something?

E: Also, the google recrystallization video says that you need to keep your solvent hot after you dissolve your stuff in it. Thats only because its water right? i wouldn't have to heat my solvent were I to use acetone or MEK?

And soooo... as your crystals form, the impurities are left in the solvent?

MEK is not illegal to purchase, I don't know who informed you otherwise. Well, maybe lab-grade MEK but it's available at hardware stores, nationwide.

Recrystallization begins with the addition of a minimal amount of hot solvent needed to dissolve a solute. As the solution cools, crystals precipitate out. And, yeah, impurities are in the solvent.

Ford Prefect
05-15-2009, 12:54 AM
Methyl Ethyl Ketone is list two and as such regulated in amount above 50 gallons or 145 kg. You won't be needing that much and it is widely available commercially.

hxxp://www.erowid.org/archive/rhodium/chemistry/watched.html

General Butt.Naked
05-15-2009, 04:14 AM
ooookay. I completely understand the recrystalization now. At a very basic level, its like a CWE, where both hydrocodone and apap are soluble in hot water, and then you cool the water, in which the apap is insoluble, and filter that out.

Okay...so the MEK wont be a problem in smaller quantities. Splendid. It feels good to be learning something. And Incorporated, that link you gave was great. It kind of breaks it down a bit easier for someone like me. You really just need to follow the directions.

More updates later.


CaspeR

General Butt.Naked
05-20-2009, 12:53 PM
bumpety bump

Still waiting for him to get back with my san pedro and mahi steaks :D


CaspeR

Von Bass
05-20-2009, 03:15 PM
Glad to hear you're still working at it! Keep us posted, don't be afraid to let the thread die and commit necrophilia a little later :)