The Definitive Guide to Dabbing

Dabbing has become incredibly popular recently because it’s one of the most potent ways to consume cannabis.

Cannabis extracts offer levels of THC potency that are far greater than what you could find in even the strongest strains of cannabis flower.

Dabbing concentrates allows people to get the effects of cannabis much more quickly than they could by smoking flower, eating edibles, or pretty much any other method of consumption.

If you’re just getting into dabbing or want to learn more about the process, read on to learn everything you’ll need to know.

What Do I Need for a Dab Rig?

There are two main ways to dab cannabis. The quickest and easiest way is by using a dab pen, which is basically like an e-cigarette. We’ll go into more detail on that later because most people are talking about using dab rigs when they talk about dabbing.

You can buy a complete dab rig in most places that sell glass pipes and other cannabis accessories, and it will help a lot if you know exactly what you’re looking for.

To get started, we recommend that your dab rig includes all of the following:

A water pipe – this is the key ingredient that most people are talking about when they talk about dab rigs. Basically, this is a special type of water pipe that’s been created to work with a nail instead of a traditional bowl.

A nail – the nail is the surface where you’ll vaporize your cannabis concentrates. It fits into your water pipe, and will normally be made of either ceramic, quartz, or titanium.

A dabber – a dabber is a little tool you’ll use to get your dabs onto the surface of your nail. Most of them are made from either metal or glass.

A blowtorch – you’ll need to get the surface of your nail so hot it can vaporize concentrates, which means a normal lighter probably won’t do the trick. You can buy all kinds of different blowtorches for dabbing and use them to make sure the nail on your dab rig is super hot.

Cannabis dabs – finally, you’ll also need the cannabis concentrates. These extracts can come in a variety of different consistencies, so you may want to try a few until you realize which one you like the best.

You may also want to have the following components for your dab rig to help make sure you’re getting the most out of your experience:

Electric Nail – instead of using a traditional nail and blowtorch, you can use an electric nail that heats itself to the appropriate temperature for dabbing. This eliminates your need to use a torch, and it also guarantees a more consistent temperature for your dabs.

Glass Dome – add a glass dome to your nail before adding your dab to help keep more of the vapor in. It will help collect some of the vapor to prevent it from drifting away before you can inhale it.

Carb Cap – a carb cap does a very similar job to the glass dome. After placing your dab onto the nail, you can put a carb cap over the top of it to gather all the excess vapor that would otherwise be lost.

Now that you have your dab rig assembled, all that’s left is to pick out the best type of concentrate for dabbing.

Types of Concentrates You Can Dab

There are many different types of concentrates people can use with their dab rigs, and most of them are incredibly similar in terms of potency. Some prefer one type of cannabis extract over another, but much of it comes down to a matter of personal preference.

For example, people may choose their favorite cannabis concentrate based on taste, ease of use, or aesthetic appeal. Some of the most popular concentrates for dabbing include wax, shatter, and live resin.

Wax – Wax is a thick, crumbly type of cannabis concentrate that looks a little bit like ear wax (for lack of a better term). It’s relatively pliable, even though it’s also very sticky sometimes. That makes it easier to work with than shatter, but it also doesn’t last as long.

Shatter – Shatter is a hard, glass-like concentrate that’s much stiffer and hard to work with than wax. If you choose to shatter because you like a concentrate that lasts longer, just heat up your dabber slightly to help it cut through the shatter. Shatter and wax have almost identical THC potency levels.

Live Resin – Live resin is becoming a lot more popular as concentrates get so much attention in the cannabis community. It’s known for having an excellent taste because it isn’t subjected to as much heat during the extraction process as shatter or wax. This type of extraction process helps preserve more of the terpenes that give cannabis strains their signature flavors.

E-Liquid Cannabis Concentrates – These aren’t appropriate for traditional dab rigs, but people do use e-liquid cannabis concentrates along with their dab pens. You can find pre-filled cartridges to attach to your favorite vape battery or keep things simple with a one-time use disposable dab pen.

Once you’ve completed your dab and selected your concentrates, you’re ready to begin dabbing.

How to Dab

If you’re using a dab pen, the process is extremely simple. Just press the button on the side of your battery (if applicable) and take a draw from the end of your cartridge to get cannabis vapor.

It’s as easy as that! If you’re using a traditional dab rig, there are a few more steps, but the process is still very doable:

1. Get some cannabis concentrate ready at the end of your dabber. This will help make sure it’s ready to go as soon as your nail is hot enough.

2. Carefully heat your nail with a blowtorch until it gets red hot– you’re trying to get it into the 500°F to 800°F range. Keep the torch pointed away from yourself and others at all times, and make sure not to touch the nail when it’s hot. Hotter temperatures may lead to bigger effects, while lower temperatures provide smooth, flavorful hits.

3. Use your dabber to apply the dab to your nail. You may have to rub it around a little bit until the dab has melted and vaporized completely.

4. Inhale the vapor as your concentrates are vaporized. Hold it in for a brief moment, then exhale, just like you would while smoking cannabis flower.

Best Concentrates in Colorado

At The Lodge Cannabis, we take great pride in offering a massive selection of concentrates on our dispensary menus.

We work with the most experienced growers and cannabis scientists in the state to give our customers access to the best concentrates in Colorado.

Each one of our products is consistent, flavorful, and powerful. Our terpene-rich concentrates are made with a lot of attention to detail when it comes to both taste and effect.

Come visit us in either Barnum or the RiNo district to shop our selection in person, or contact us online to learn more.

Image Credit: Shutterstock/Roxana Gonzalez

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