Please do not attempt to make DMT at home, especially if you do not have the right equipment and skills! Incorrectly performing the DMT extraction process can lead to serious injuries or even death. Our research surrounding the various teks and online methods helped us create this blog post. Despite this, we cannot rule out the possibility of something wrong or still missing in the process outlined in the article. We provide the following information for harm reduction purposes only!
Were you looking for instructions on how DMT is made? Not satisfied with the DMT already in your brain? To this day, we still don’t understand why DMT is so commonly found in your body and plants or why people who smoke it meet DMT elves.
But if you found this article, you aren’t searching for those answers. Instead, you are probably wondering if it is possible to make DMT. Indeed, there are many ways N, N-Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) can be extracted from plants with fairly common chemicals and equipment.
What follows is how to extract N, N-DMT from plants using a technique or “tek” called Acid to Base (A/B or ATB) using Mimosa Hostillis root bark, also called MHRB. While it is possible to synthesize 5-MEO-DMT at home, we do not cover that here.
Is Making DMT Illegal?
Making or selling DMT is illegal. We do not endorse any illegal activity, and DMT extraction is not only unlawful, but the chemicals involved can be extremely dangerous.
If you want to experience DMT, we suggest going to a part of the world where you can experience ayahuasca or other traditional methods of consuming DMT-containing plants.
In this article, we examine the underground drug culture online and the methods it has developed for DMT extraction. We believe that providing an understanding of how drugs are produced contributes to harm reduction. Furthermore, by sharing our research, we hope to help people avoid serious harm associated with DMT production like chemical burns, explosions, poisoning, or other dangers associated with amateur chemistry.
Is Making DMT Dangerous?
Besides being illegal, making DMT involves using solvents that can and will catch fire near open flames or sparks. Solvents also give off harmful fumes. For these reasons, areas where solvents are used, must be adequately ventilated.
Many techniques also use granulated sodium hydroxide (NaOH), commonly known as lye. As a caustic substance, lye will cause severe burns or even blindness. Any spilled lye that comes in contact with the skin should be flushed with water. Popular culture recommends vinegar, but this can cause a heat reaction and more burns.
Learning How to Extract DMT Online
The creation of DMT was limited to chemists for a long time. It was first synthesized in 1931s by Canadian chemist Richard Manske. After that, DMT remained relatively obscure until people like Terence Mckenna and Joe Rogan raised awareness around it, and the advent of the internet made extraction techniques widely available.
Even with the information available on the web, learning how to make DMT was difficult ten years ago. But now, online communities like Erowid, DMT Nexus, and even Reddit have made a great deal of information available. These communities are a wealth of knowledge, and this article could never exist without them.
These communities are also places to ask specific, informed questions. Questions are encouraged because producing quality DMT isn’t just about following steps found online. Instead, understanding why someone does each step will lead to better quality DMT, higher yields, and contribute to harm reduction.
What is the Best Way to Extract DMT?
Today there are almost too many methods or “teks.” The most common methods are:
- Acid to Base (A/B)
- Straight to Base (STB)
This article focuses on a version of the Acid to Base tek, also known online as A/B and ATB.
There is also a dizzying array of usable DMT-containing plants, analogs for chemicals, and opinions about every step of the process. But don’t be overwhelmed. There are many paths to the same goal, and most teks are doing the same thing.
What is DMT Extraction? - A High-Level View
So what are all the teks doing? The process can seem intimidating at first, but there are really only a few steps to extraction teks:
- Create a watery DMT solution
- Capture DMT in a nonpolar solvent
- Retrieve the DMT as a solid
The Chemistry of Acid to Base (A/B, ATB) DMT Extraction
Without getting too technical, here are the basics of the chemistry of an Acid to Base extraction:
- Place DMT in a low pH or acidic solution. (vinegar and water) Acid destroys the plant proteins and makes DMT acetate which is soluble as a salt.
- Raise the pH to convert DMT salt to freebase. This high pH or alkaline solution is created by adding caustic soda (lye).
- DMT freebase can become soluble in naphtha. Mix the alkaline solution of freebase DMT with a nonpolar solvent (naphtha) to bind the DMT in the solvent and separate the DMT from unwanted plant material.
- Retrieve the DMT freebase from the nonpolar solvent as a solid. When naphtha’s temperature is lowered (put in the freezer), the DMT will precipitate out into solid form.
The info presented in this post was created for harm reduction purposes only! Do not attempt to make DMT at home, especially if you don't have the right skills and tools. It can be extremely dangerous!
How to Find Materials to Make DMT
As promised, everything needed to make DMT can be found either where you live or on the internet. Here is where to look:
DMT-containing plants are readily available online. It can be helpful to order them already in powdered form. Depending on where you are located on the planet, not every plant is available, nor will every website work. The following may or may not work in your region:
Chemicals can be found at local department and hardware stores or online. Read labels to know exactly what is in the product.
Chemicals used should be tested with an evaporation test. The chemical is placed on a clear surface like a piece of clean glass. One can see how pure a chemical is by waiting until it is evaporated. If any residue is left, another product should be substituted.
Mixing unknown chemicals can have extremely dangerous consequences and is easily avoided by researching a product. Googling a product’s MSDS sheet is an easy way to know a product is safe and 100% pure.
Glass containers must be used! Plastic will not stand up to some of the chemical reactions taking place. Ideally, borosilicate glass flasks are used as they can handle changes in the heat without breaking.
Aluminum pots also will break down in an acid bath. Use only stainless steel cooking vessels.
Choose containers after calculating the ratios for your recipe. Understanding the ratios for each stage is essential before starting the process. Proper container sizes avoid potentially dangerous overflows. Distributing the extraction between several containers is also not ideal. One clean run in containers large enough to hold all material will produce the best results.
Plant Material and Chemicals to Extract DMT
What plants and chemicals are accessible can vary, there are analogs for each, and changes from popular formulas should be researched extremely well.
- DMT-containing plants - Mimosa Hostillis, Syrian Rue, and various Acacias, are common choices, but many options exist. This article assumes Mimosa Hostillis or MHRB is being used, as it is the most common.
- Distilled Water - distilled is ideal because it is free of impurities and will be a pH of 7, although tap water can be used.
- Solvent - non-polar solvent, the most common choice is naphtha, although other options exist.
- Sodium Hydroxide - is commonly known as lye, although other caustic sodas can be used. Lye is a watched substance in many parts of the United States, as purchasing large quantities of it is associated with methamphetamine production.
- Acetic Acid - the common choice is 5% distilled white vinegar, although other acids can be used
- Scale - for measuring plant material, granulated lye, final product
- Glass Liquid Measuring Container - for measuring water, vinegar, solvent
- Glass Mixing Jar with Lid - figure out what size you need based on how much plant material you plan to use.
- Stainless Steel Pot - again, determine the size before starting the process
- Coffee Grinder - if the plant material is a rough bark, you will need a strong one. A Vitamix is great too
- Coffee Filters - for straining crystals from solvent
- Strainer/Nut Milk Bag - straining plant material from solution
- Turkey Baster - large, 50ml baster
- Eyedropper - 1ml
- Funnel - plastic or metal
- Thermometer - glass, not plastic
- pH Measuring Device - pH strips or a digital meter
- Pyrex Dish - a square flat dish with an airtight lid is best
- Razor Blade - to scrape crystals from pyrex
- Eye Protection - lye can cause blindness.
- Disposable Gloves - to protect hands from dangerous chemicals
- Face Mask - to prevent inhaling plant dust when grinding
Step by Step - How DMT is Made With Acid to Base Tek (ATB or A/B)
There are many DMT extraction teks to choose from online. Here you will find our version of Acid to Base tek. We recommend using this as a starting point and, in addition, reading several other different teks and instructions before proceeding with your extraction.
Prepare Plant Material
Prepare the DMT-containing plant by grinding it as fine as possible. This creates more surface area. A mask will prevent inhaling the dust created from grinding.
Pruning shears can be used to make chunky bark fit in a coffee grinder. Grinding small amounts is best to not burn out a coffee grinder’s motor. At scale, some use a wood chipper.
Combine plant material, 5% vinegar, and distilled water into a pot. Three parts of distilled water to one part of vinegar work for a ratio. If you are testing for pH 2-4 is recommended.
This can be done on a stove but is tricky as excess heat (like a rolling boil) will destroy DMT. So, a slow cooker or double boiler is better. A hotplate with a magnetic stirrer is best.
Gently warm the acid bath for 2-3 hours. Stir regularly to avoid plant material sticking to the bottom of the pot. Multiple acid baths are thought to increase final yields and can be repeated 3-4 times.
Strain Plant Material (Optional)
This step is optional but makes the remaining steps easier. Allow the solution to cool, and then filter out the plant material with a fine strainer or a nut-milk bag. The remaining solution should be a dark, rich tea with a strong smell.
Basify the Solution
In this step, lye is used to raise the pH of the tea so the DMT can bind to the solvent.
Working with lye is dangerous. Always wear a mask, gloves, and eye protection, and cover exposed skin.
Don’t add water to the lye. Lye is always added to the water. When mixed, the reaction generates heat and bubbles - just like when you mixed vinegar and baking soda in science class. If done too quickly, the solution can spit bubbles that burn.
A common ratio is 1 part lye per 1 part plant material. Much less lye can be used, but the real goal of this step is to get the pH above 12. A solution’s pH depends on how much and type of water is used, how much acid was added, and what the chosen ingredients are. A pH meter is the best way to properly basify the solution.
Most teks are on the side of more lye than less as it can prevent emulsion (think what happens when you try to mix water and oil).
- Mix in a separate glass container from the tea. Lye granules are added a little bit at a time to cold water. Go slow and wear protection.
- The lye solution is then slowly added to the tea. The pH needs to be above 12. The tea will turn black as the pH rises.
- When the solution is stable, the solution needs to be mixed. This must be done gently to avoid excessive heat and pressure buildup. Using a metal spoon or swirling works. Some will place a cap on the container and shake gently - but this builds up pressure, and even a small amount of shaking must be accompanied by releasing by loosening the cap of the container.
Wash Away Fat with Solvent
Now a nonpolar solvent is added for the DMT to bind to and separate from the tea.
Solvents are extremely flammable. Absolutely no open flames should be around solvents. This includes any device that might generate a spark. Never use a gas stove. Solvents give off fumes, and any area a solvent is used in must be well ventilated.
A common ratio of solvent to plant material is slightly more than 1 part naphtha to 1 part plant material. (110ml naphtha to 100 grams of plant material)
- Add the solvent to a glass mixing container with a lid. The solution also needs to be mixed with a gentle shake. Some recommend rolling a vessel to mix the solvent and tea.
- Being gentle here is important because otherwise, the solution will emulsify and be difficult to mix - too much emulsion means starting over.
Warming the Solution
For DMT to bind to the solvent, a warm water bath is prepared.
Never warm a solvent with an open flame and applying too much heat will cause a container of solvent to explode. Suddenly plunging glass into hot water can cause it to break.
- Before adding the container of solvent, get the water lukewarm.
- Place the container of tea and solvent in the lukewarm bath.
- Separately heat another container of water and slowly pour to increase the temperature.
- This solution then needs to be carefully mixed again and then returned to the warm bath. This process is repeated 3 - 4 times, and then the solution is set aside to settle.
Pull the DMT
A clearly defined top layer of nonpolar solvent will be on top of the solution - this is where the DMT is.
- Harvest this solvent with the baster and deposit it into the pyrex dish.
- The darker bottom layer is to be avoided. It is the leftover plant material and is considered to be not dangerous, these steps are designed to avoid creating a harsher final product.
- Once the top layer is separated, another round of extraction can occur.
- Again naphtha is added to the solution, and the “wash” step is repeated. This can be done three times or until no yield is visible after freezing precipitation.
Freeze Precipitate DMT From The Solvent
Getting freebase DMT out from the solvent is achieved by placing the solvent-containing pyrex dish into the freezer. At freezing temperatures, the DMT will “fall out” or precipitate out of the solvent.
- The dish is sealed and left alone for 24-48 hours. The colder the freezer is, and the less the dish is disturbed, the quicker crystals will form.
- When crystals have formed on the dish, it is removed from the freezer. The turkey baster and eyedropper are used to remove the solvent.
- The solvent is strained through coffee filters as not all crystals will be attached to the pyrex dish. The coffee filters catch any loose particles.
- The dish is then placed upside down to drain and evaporate any remaining solvent.
- When the solvent is evaporated and no odor remains, the DMT crystals can be scraped off with a razor blade.
Purification and Recrystallization
The resulting DMT powder can be smoked, but many producers prefer to perform an extra but optional step to further purify the extract.
Purification is achieved by adding a small amount of naphtha to the DMT powder and stirring until it dissolves. If the powder doesn’t dissolve, heat the solvent in a warm water bath.
This solution is gradually cooled first at room temperature, then in the fridge for several hours, and then in the freezer. Slow cooling will produce a greater yield.
How to Make and Use DMT Safely
Working with both caustic soda and solvents carries significant risks. Not using pure chemicals or swapping out common chemicals or plant materials can cause serious complications.
DMT, or any drug, should be tested with harm reduction kits. Harm reduction kits cannot tell how pure a sample is but can indicate if something has gone seriously wrong and a substance is not DMT. The best way to analyze what is in DMT is using a thin-layer chromatography test (TLC) on a sample.
How to Make DMT - Final Thoughts
DMT is everywhere, extremely powerful, and its effects are poorly understood. Some people take DMT looking for the meaning of life, while others are researching DMT as a cure for depression.
These mysteries are fascinating, but it is important to remember DMT is a tremendously potent psychedelic. Therefore, DMT should only be used cautiously and in very small doses.
Making or extracting DMT is probably illegal where you live and potentially dangerous. However, the materials and many different extraction methods are readily available online. For those who decide to produce DMT, a large online community exists on several subReddits and the DMT Nexus, where many intelligent people answer technical questions.
Finally, using peer support resources for safety and integration is essential when making or taking DMT. Consider any implications for your own and other people’s well-being when consuming DMT or using dangerous chemicals. Always treat DMT, the machine elves, and dangerous lab chemicals with respect.