This note has been reprinted anonymously from a message in a private mailing list on the net.
In a quest to determine if you can use 'naptha' as they call it safely (by my standards) to extract lipophilic solutes, I took one quart of lighter fluid (coleman) (plain, no plant materials present...this is f*cking plain lighter fluid for all of you ATF bandelaros out there) and placed it in a flat rectangular glass cookie/cake dish, then half way submersed this dish in an improvised water bath (kitty litter pan with water and two "tea" maker heating elements) and used a thermometer to keet this contraption at 150 degrees farenheit for twenty hours... (adding water as needed), and lo and behold although the majority of the lighter fluid evaporated in the first five hours, now at twenty hours there is a gummy/oily residue in the bottom of the pan that is not evaporating... I believe that this is a fraction of less volatile hydrocarbons in the mixture, and quite frankly I dont know if it is ever going to evaporate.
Bear in mind that I am verrrry cautious when discussing what you can and should not ingest, but my personal opinion is that this crap would be harmless if ingested orally, but I would not smoke it since heavy oils deposit in the lung and may stimulate the alveolar macrophages (white cells) to try and ingest them, and failing to do so, the macrophages lyse, spilling the oil and cellular digestive enzymes in to the lung tissue where they kill the lung cells, therefore the undigested oil is still there, and the process gets repeated over and over....so a little crap in your lungs that you can't get rid of will keep working for the rest of your life to lead you down the road to emphysema. (worst case scenario)
I am going to try and evaporate some windshield wiper fluid (mostly methanol) and see if there is a residue after that.
Sorry if this little empirical info rains on anyone's parade, but for anyone out there actually doing extractions, it is much better to embark on a quest knowing the risks than to blindly deny that there are any just because it suits your purpose to do so.
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