DIY Rosin Press: How to Build Your Own Rosin Press For Under $500
Chances are you've landed on this article because you're interested in putting together your own rosin press instead of buying from a brand name manufacturer. No problem, we've got you covered. In this article we'll go over everything you need to know to build your own rosin press as we discuss everything from the necessary equipment you need, breaking down the associated costs, looking at potential yields, and recommending complete builds to accommodate different budgets and price points. Let's begin, shall we?
The Necessary Equipment
When it boils down to it, putting together your own rosin press is pretty simple since all you need are two things:
- A Shop press
- Rosin Plates and Heating Controller
That being said, not all shop presses and plates are created equal. You probably have a budget in mind on how much you'd like to spend putting together a rosin press; working with a higher budget means being able to buy higher quality equipment, which means longevity and possibly getting more use out of your press over the coming years. Fortunately, our years of experience and expertise in this industry having interacted with over hundreds of customer, speaking with people just like you puts us in a good position to recommend only the best equipment that "just works" while keeping a budget in mind.
The engine of your soon-to-be rosin press starts with a humble shop press. Keep in mind that these shop presses were meant to press bearings in the garage or shop once or twice a month, or maybe used just a couple of times a year. The common feedback we've heard among our customers is that while these shop presses are generally inexpensive, the quality of the steel on these aren't too good. There are of course higher quality shop presses available for higher prices (more on that later on).
When purchasing a shop press, most of them differ by capacity. The most common ones are 6-tons (12,000lbs), 10-tons (20,000lbs), 12-tons (24,000lbs), and 20-tons (40,000lbs). So, you'd want to ask yourself how much you intend to press and how much material you are working with on a consistent basis. Buying a higher capacity press means you're able to exert more force and squish more material. However, the amount of material you can squish is relative to the size of your rosin plates. The larger the plates, the more material they can accommodate, the more costly they become—keep this in mind if you're trying to stay under a certain budget.
Recommended Shop Presses
By far the largest and most popular place to purchase a shop press is from HarborFreight.com. Most of them can be had for under $300, and some even under $100. Here are the most popular shop presses used for DIY rosin presses:
|6 ton A-Frame Bench Shop Press||12 ton H-Frame Floor Shop Press||20 ton H-Frame Floor Shop Press||20 ton Industrial Hydraulic Shop Press|
|Capacity||6 ton||12 ton||20 ton||20 ton|
Also, be sure to check out the coupon section of Harbor Freight's website since they have some deals like the one below where you can save some money when buying a shop press.
Going back to higher quality shop presses, and assuming you have a higher budget and some money to spare on this build, a lot of our customers are having excellent results with the Dake B-10 Model 10-Ton Press. While the Dake may be 3x the price of the Harbor Freight presses, everyone who's been using a Dake seem to be very satisfied with the excellent build quality and reliability of this particular model.
Rosin Plates and Heating Controller
At the heart of your rosin press are the heating plates and the heating controller behind it. At the heart of your rosin press are the plates and the heating controller. When choosing plates, you need to factor in the amount of material that you wish to put through your rosin press. This is important because the size of the plates are directly correlated to the amount of material you can squeeze and put through your stress.
Steel vs. Aluminum Plates
There's been an ongoing debate around this topic regarding plate material; whether stainless steel plates are better than aluminum plates. In summary, Aluminum's properties are far superior than stainless steel ones because not only do aluminum plates heat up faster, but they also don't hold heat nearly as long as stainless steel ones. This is good because it prevents the rosin from being burnt by sitting too long on the plates.
Recommended Rosin Plates and Heating Controller
You may ask yourself how come we're only recommending one brand of rosin plates and heating controllers? That's because the NugSmasher DIY rosin press kits tick the following boxes:
- Made in USA
- Lifetime Warranty
- Great price point and value (again, thanks to the lifetime warranty)
- Offered in different sizes
- Aluminum plates
In short, the guys from NugSmasher know what they're doing!
|2.5" Kit||4" x 4" Kit||4" x 6" Kit||7" x 10" Kit|
|Plate Size||2.5" x 2.5"||4" x 4"||4" x 6"||7" x 10"|
|Capacity||Up to 5g||Up to 14g||Up to 28g||Up to 128g|
|Warranty||Lifetime Warranty||Lifetime Warranty||Lifetime Warranty||Lifetime Warranty|
Recommended DIY Rosin Press Builds
DIY Rosin Press Builds Under $500
|Option A||Option B||Option C||Option D*|
Technically speaking, the total cost for the press and plates for Option D is $528.99 but thanks to a coupon found on Harbor Freight's website for the 12-ton press, it knocks an extra $20 off the regular price of the press. So be sure to check out the coupon section of Harbor Freight's website before purchasing any press from Harbor Freight's website to avail of those extra savings!
As you see, putting together a rosin press can be had for very little money. For less than $350, you can start producing your own concentrates at the comfort of your own home and watch that oil drip!
Recommended DIY Rosin Press Build
If you have some money to spare, we recommend the following build out for a very good rosin press under $1,000 that's sure to last you a long time...or until you grow beyond it.
Going price: $409.10 - $450
Other Equipment and Accessories
Now that you've built your rosin press, you can start pressing your material and start making luscious rosin, right?! Err... not quite, but we're almost there. There's just a few housekeeping things we'd like to go over before you go out and build your press so continue reading on...
Depending on your starting material, a rosin bag is recommended in order to keep plant material away from your rosin oil.
When pressing kief, dry sift, hash, and bubble hash, we recommend using a 36 micron bag.
When pressing flower, trim, and shake, we recommend using a 90 micron or 115 micron bag.
You will get the highest yield from a 115 micron rosin bag compared with a 90 micron rosin bag, but the 90 micron bags will give you more filtration and slightly higher quality product.
While pre-press molds don't necessarily help in maximizing yields (yields predominantly depend on strain/cure/humidity), pre-press molds pack & compress your material evenly so there are no gaps for rosin to sit & collect in between the gaps.
If you're interested in picking a pre-press mold up, check out our selection of pre-press molds here.
It goes without saying that in order to press and collect rosin, you need parchment paper. Is there a particular brand better than others? In our experience the most accessible parchment paper while being fairly reliable and cheap is the Reynolds branded one that you can find on Amazon.
If you're feeling fancy and want the kind of parchment paper that makes it a bit easier and faster to collect the rosin, then we recommend going with this heavy-duty parchment paper from Pure Pressure.
Your best friend in collecting all the rosin you've just extracted & collected in your parchment paper. They're inexpensive. gets the job done, and can easily accessible through Amazon. Here are a few from the top results:
Hack: Use a cold surface: a piece of marble, ceramic tile, metal, stainless steel scraps or a similar material where you sandwich your newly pressed rosin with the parchment paper between these two surfaces to help keep the moisture away from your rosin as you put it in the freezer to cool down in order to make it easier to collect it using your tools.
Building One Seems Complicated. Are There Other Options?
Certainly! There are a lot of great pre-built rosin presses in the market today from name brand manufacturers within the same price range as DIY ones that you could consider if you don't have the technical know-how to build one, don't have the time, or maybe you just want something that's ready to be used plug-n-play.
Here are some options for you to choose from:
Best Rosin Presses Under $500
|Plate Size||2.5" x 2.5"||3.2" x 2.8"|
|Load Capacity||2 Tons (4,000 lbs)||1,500 lbs|
|Squish Capacity||3.5 grams||3.5 grams|
|Operation||Manual, Hydraulic Arm||100% Electric|
|Warranty||Lifetime||1 year electronic parts,
5 years on structural parts
Best Bang-For-The-Buck Home Rosin Press
For less than the cost of building your own Dake rosin press ($809.09 vs $796), you can get a similarly-specced rosin press from a brand name manufacturer that comes with a lifetime warranty. The lifetime warranty alone is worth the price of this press and the peace of mind that comes along with it if ever something breaks down.
To check out our picks for the best name brand home and commercial rosin presses, read our article here.
There are several ways to go about building a rosin press just as there are several ways to skin a cat. The examples we've laid out are only but a few examples. However, they are the more popular and cost-effective options based on our research and experience.
Have any questions? Feel free to contact us, and a member of our team would be happy to help you with your build.
Finally, for a complete A-Z guide on rosin, finding the optimum temperature and maximizing for the best yields, check out our Ultimate Rosin Press Guide here.