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Book II of PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story, by Alexander & Ann Shulgin #151: 4-TE
#151 TE: 4-TE; 4-Thioescaline; 3,5-Dimethoxy-4-ethylthiophenethylamine

#151 TE SYNTHESIS: A solution was made of 45.2 g N,N,N′,N′-tetramethylethylenediamine and 41.4 g of 1,3-dimethoxybenzene in 300 mL hexane. This was stirred vigorously under a He atmosphere and cooled to 0 °C with an external ice bath. There was added 225 mL of 1.6 M butyllithium in hexane which produced a white granular precipitate. The reaction mixture was stirred for 15 min. There was then added 38 mL of diethyl disulfide which changed the granular precipitate to a creamy character. Stirring was continued for an additional 5 min, then the reaction mixture was poured into 1 L of dilute H2SO4. The two phases were separated, and the aqueous phase extracted with 2×150 mL Et2O. The organic phases were combined, and the solvent removed under vacuum to provide 60 g of 2-ethylthio-1,3-dimethoxybenzene as an off-white oil that spontaneously crystallized. It was distilled nonetheless, boiling at 85–96 °C at 0.4 mm/Hg. This distillate can be recrystallized from hexane to form long needles with a mp of 45–46 °C. Anal. (C10H14O2S) C,H.

To a stirred solution of 60 g of 2-ethylthio-1,3-dimethoxybenzene in 300 mL CH2Cl2 there was added 49 g elemental bromine dissolved in 100 mL CH2Cl2. The reaction was not exothermic, and it was allowed to stir for 2 h. The reaction mixture was washed with H2O, then with aqueous NaOH, and finally with H2O that contained sodium hydrosulfite. The solvent was removed under vacuum leaving 84 g of an amber oil as residue. This was distilled at 105–115 °C at 0.15 mm/Hg yielding 73.3 g of 4-bromo-2-ethylthio-1,3-dimethoxybenzene as a light yellow oil. Anal. (C11H15BrO2S) C,H.

To a solution of 27 mL diisopropylamine in 150 mL anhydrous THF that was stirred under a N2 atmosphere and cooled to -10 °C with an external ice/MeOH bath, there was added in sequence 83 mL of 1.6 M butyllithium in hexane, 4.4 mL of dry CH3CN over the course of 5 min, and finally 12.1 g of 4-bromo-2-ethylthio-1,3-dimethoxybenzene which had been dissolved in 20 mL THF (also added over the course of 5 min). The color progressed from yellow to orange to deep red-brown. Stirring was continued for 10 min, and then the reaction mixture was poured into 300 mL dilute H2SO4. The organic layer was separated, and was washed with more dilute H2SO4. The aqueous phases were combined, and extracted with 2×100 mL CH2Cl2. These extracts were pooled with the original organic phase, and the solvents removed under vacuum. The residue was distilled into two fractions at 0.3 mm/Hg. The first fraction boiled at 95–115 °C and weighed 4.9 g. It was made up of several components, but it contained little nitrile material and was discarded. The second fraction came over at 145–200 °C and weighed 2.9 g. By thin layer chromatography this fraction was largely 3,5-dimethoxy-4-ethylthiophenylacetonitrile, and was used as such in the following reduction.

A suspension of 1.25 g LAH in 50 mL anhydrous THF under N2 was cooled to 0 °C and vigorously stirred. There was added, dropwise, 0.8 mL 100% H2SO4, followed by 2.7 g 3,5-dimethoxy-4-ethylthiophenylacetonitrile, neat, over the course of 5 min. The reaction mixture was stirred at 0 °C for a few min, then brought to a reflux for 15 min on the steam bath. After cooling back to room temperature, there was added 15 mL IPA to destroy the excess hydride and 10% NaOH to bring the reaction to a basic pH and convert the aluminum oxide to a loose, white, filterable consistency. This was removed by filtration, and washed with 50 mL portions of IPA. The filtrate and washes were stripped of solvent under vacuum, and the residue suspended between 50 mL CH2Cl2 and 50 mL dil. H2SO4. The organic phase was separated, and extracted with 2×50 mL dilute H2SO4. The original aqueous phase and these two extracts were combined, made basic with aqueous NaOH, and extracted with 3×50 mL CH2Cl2. These extracts were stripped of solvent under vacuum. The residue was distilled at 112–135 °C at 0.2 mm/Hg to give 1.1 g of a slightly yellow viscous liquid. This was dissolved in 4 mL IPA, neutralized with 14 drops of concentrated HCl and, with continuous stirring, diluted with 10 mL anhydrous Et2O. The product was removed by filtration, washed with Et2O, and air dried to give 1.0 g of 3,5-dimethoxy-4-ethylthiophenethylamine hydrochloride (TE) as white crystals with some solvent of crystallization. The crude mp of 101–106 °C was only slightly improved by recrystallization from CH3CN (mp 106–109 °C). But upon fusion and resolidification, the melting point was 167–168 °C and this sample was further dried by heating at 100 °C for 24 h before analysis. Anal. (C12H20ClNO2S) C,H.

DOSAGE: 20–30 mg.

DURATION: 9–12 h.

QUALITATIVE COMMENTS: (with 20 mg) “I feel it in my ovaries. It is very sensuous. This is total energy, and I am aware of my every membrane. This has been a marvelous experience, very beautiful, joyous, and sensuous. But maybe the dose is a little too high as there is too much body tingling. I am jangly.”

(with 20 mg) “The predominant characteristic was the feeling of clean burning, pure energy, a long-lasting clear-headedness and clarity of thought, and an ease of talking and sharing. I did not have a strong feeling of Presence, but more a wonderful feeling of converting energy into action. I found that my initial look inwards was always a look of fear, and I wondered if this might not be the same feeling that others express as excitement. They were certainly of the same nature, they arose at the same point on the fringe of the unknown, and they point to a basic difference in attitude. The excitement is for the new, and is based on trust. The fear is a return to the past, and is defensive, with reluctance to reexperience past pain. The aftermath of this experience was the most profound of any that I have had in a long time. For the following week, I found myself on a new level of functioning, very energetic and very much in the flow of life and free of mental distractions. I have become a great deal more aware of the traps of meditation, and how you can build walls around yourself and around certain concepts, if you are not careful.”

(with 22 mg) “Totally developed at 2 hours, to a +++. No clearing of the sinuses, so it is not a decongestant. There is a lot of visual activity. In the group there is good communication, and a lot of laughter.”

(with 25 mg) “There is a disconnection, there is complex depth without definition. Without music, this is almost negative, as I can find no definition. But talking gives me some structure. And I got into some pretty extraordinary conversations. About President Hoover, Omni magazine, the colors of spices, and a couple of personal relatives. This is extra-good for ideas and talking. It is indeed a clean experience, and superb for communication.”

(with 30 mg) “I was at a plus three for certainly three hours. There were some visuals, some eyes-closed fantasy, but little imagery. Somehow I could at no time interlock with music. It seemed always to get in the way. Sexual activity is an excellent way to relieve the muscular tension and the body’s heaviness. There was little hunger and I ate lightly, and I felt somehow depleted. Sleep OK at the twelth hour. The a.m. was fine, but on retrospect the experience was overall strangely cloudy, not negative, but there was not enough mental to balance the physical.”

(with 30 mg) “My alert was in 40 minutes, and I was completely developed by 2 hours. There was a large measure of erotic fantasy, but the body load was also quite heavy. I had a slight cloak effect, where I was over-energized but somehow under a blanket of quietness. I would certainly repeat this, but at maybe 25 milligrams.”

EXTENSIONS AND COMMENTARY: Although the ethyl group (of the ethylthio on the 4-position) is just one carbon atom longer than the methyl group (of TM) that small change already produces hints and indicators of some physical toxicity. The propyl compound (see TP) is still of similar potency, but appears to be yet more difficult, physically. The butyl homolog never made it off the ground at all as a psychedelic, but the physical difficulties seem less as well. All that was left to come through was the euphoria. If this 4-position sulfur analogue series of mescaline is ever to be more carefully explored, it must almost certainly be with the shortest possible chain (TM, as a psychedelic) or with long, long chains (the four-carbon chain of the butyl group in TB), as a feel-good compound.

Page updated 30 March 2012 · This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License ·

About PiHKAL • info

This version of Book II of PiHKAL is based on the Erowid online version, originally transcribed by Simson Garfinkle and converted into HTML by Lamont Granquist. I drew also on “Tyrone Slothrop’s” (Unfinished) Review of PIHKAL to enumerate the many analogues mentioned in PiHKAL but not described at length. Still others remain to be added.

I have tried here to expunge any artifacts introduced by the earlier transcriptions and restore most of the typographic niceties found in the printed edition. I’ve also made minor changes to some chemical names in line with current nomenclature practice, and in the hope of aligning with more readers’ searches. Typically the change is little more than expanding a prefix and setting it in italics. The errata and changes page has further details.

Cautionary Note

“At the present time, restrictive laws are in force in the United States and it is very difficult for researchers to abide by the regulations which govern efforts to obtain legal approval to do work with these compounds in human beings.

“No one who is lacking legal authorization should attempt the synthesis of any of the compounds described in these files, with the intent to give them to man. To do so is to risk legal action which might lead to the tragic ruination of a life. It should also be noted that any person anywhere who experiments on himself, or on another human being, with any of the drugs described herein, without being familiar with that drug’s action and aware of the physical and/or mental disturbance or harm it might cause, is acting irresponsibly and immorally, whether or not he is doing so within the bounds of the law.”

Alexander T. Shulgin

Copyright Notice

The copyright for Book I of PiHKAL has been reserved in all forms and it may not be distributed. Book II of PiHKAL may be distributed for non-commercial reproduction provided that the introductory information, copyright notice, cautionary notice and ordering information remain attached.

Ordering Information

PiHKAL is the extraordinary record of the authors’ years exploring the chemistry and transformational power of phenethylamines. This book belongs in the library of anyone seeking a rational, enlightened and candid perspective on psychedelic drugs.

Although Sasha and Ann have put Book II of PiHKAL in the public domain, available to anyone, I strongly encourage you to buy a copy. We owe them—and there’s still nothing quite like holding a real book in your hands.

PiHKAL (ISBN 0-9630096-0-5) is available for US$24.50 (plus $10 domestic first-class shipping) from Transform Press.

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