Ready to explore the world of cannabis concentrates? If so, you will probably find yourself in the world of dabs, and wondering what is dabbing? Below is a guide to help you along as you explore using cannabis concentrates.
First, what is a dab?
A dab is a serving of cannabis concentrate. The type of dabs can vary, as pretty much all high-potency cannabis concentrates are best used in “dab-sized” amounts. Some of the more common types of cannabis concentrates consumed as dabs include:
- Hash Rosin (Water and heat extraction)
- Live Resin/Fresh Frozen extracted
- Flower Rosin (Pressure and heat extraction)
- BHO/CRC (“Shatter” “Wax” “Budder” depending on consistency)
- Diamonds (HCFSE or High Cannabinoid Full Spectrum Extract)
- Sauce (HTFSE or High Terpene Full Spectrum Extract)
- 5 and 6 Star water hash, aka “Full Melt” water hash
- Ethanol Extracted Oil
- CO2 Extracted Oil
- PHO/Propane Extracted Oil
Compared to flower, dabs can be as much as five times as potent, but they can also be terpene-rich and flavorful. When smoked with a good dab rig, the concentrate offers a robust flavor and intense effects with very little product used.
What is dabbing?
Dabbing or “taking a dab” is the act of using a dab. You essentially use special smoking tools to heat the concentrate to the point of vaporizing and then inhale the produced vapors. Dabbing is most often done with a dab rig, which is a bit like a bong in that it is usually glass and has a chamber, but a dab rig is outfitted with a nail or banger that houses the dab for proper heating with a torch. Dab rigs may also have an electric nail (e-nail), which heats up via electricity instead of using a manual torch or lighter.
What are the benefits of dabbing?
Some people prefer dabbing over smoking, even though smoking flower is still the most common method of weed consumption. The top advantages of dabbing include:
- Potency/effects – Dabbing offers more intense effects with very little product or effort
- Flavor – Many dabs are highly flavorful because of high concentrations of terpenes
- Cleaner – No plant matter combustion means a cleaner, purer smoking experience and less mess to contend with
- Fast-acting – A lot of medical users prefer dabs because the onset of effects happens so quickly
- Discreet – Dabbing, especially with a dab pen, can be relatively discreet compared to smoking flower
How do you take a dab?
The most important thing to remember with dabs is you don’t need a lot. If you’re new to dabbing, start with a dab about the size of a grain of rice, which will produce only a hit or two with a dab rig. Second, get familiar with good dabbing temps with concentrates—you’ll be shooting for temperatures between 400 and 600 degrees to flash vaporize the material. Third, determine how you will use the dab. Dab rigs are the most common, which we will cover below. However, you can also use dabs with a dab pen and a few other methods.
Dab Tools You’ll Need
- A dab rig
- A torch lighter unless you have an e-nail
- A dab tool
- Concentrate or “dab” of your choice
- A carb cap
Using a Dab Step by Step
- Pull out the amount of a dab you need using the dab tool.
- Use your torch to heat up the nail or banger until it is hot. There is no need to get it red hot, as it is quartz and will not start glowing until it is THOUSANDS of degrees. Just make sure the entire nail is evenly heated before allowing it to cool
- Allow the nail to cool slightly for up to 60 seconds. Use a temp gauge or a timer to find your ideal temperature zone.
- Use your dab tool to place the dab on the heated nail or banger.
- Inhale as the dab vaporizes, use a carb cap if you have one to hold in heat and get the most vapor
- Exhale the vapors.
- Clean up your dab rig and nail after each use to keep the nail clean for future use.
Other Weed Dab FAQs
What’s the difference between wax and dabs?
Wax is a cannabis concentrate and is used as a dab because of its high potency levels. Therefore, wax is essentially a type of dabs, much like other forms of concentrates.
What is a dab pen?
A dab pen is a portable vaping device that allows you to use concentrates on the go. Some dab pens from dispensaries are preloaded with cannabis distillate, but others are designed with a heating coil and rechargeable battery for repeated use with your own concentrates. They can have titanium, ceramic or quartz coils and come in a variety of power levels and styles.
Is dabbing safe?
Concentrates are highly potent, sometimes with THC ranging between 60 and 90 percent. Therefore, it is more possible to consume too much of a dab than it would be with standard flower. This can lead to undesirable, intense side effects. However, using only a tiny, sliver or “dab” and monitoring your effects as a first-timer is important. Nevertheless, you can’t really overdose on dabs, and taking a dab properly should not cause unwanted side effects. Be sure to treat all cannabis concentrates with respect, approach new doses carefully, and don’t take your dabs too hot, as this can lead to a painful throat hit/unpleasant flavors caused by terpenes breaking down into undesirable chemicals at high temperature.
Ready to Get More Familiar with Dabbing?
Be sure to pick up a good dab rig before you get started. At Bern Gallery, we offer a nice lineup of high-quality glass rigs to ensure you have the best dabbing experience. We also carry all the needed accessories and gear! A proper setup for dabbing will feature:
- Torch and butane
- Metal or glass dabber tool
- Quartz banger or occasionally titanium domeless nail
- QTips or Globmops for cleaning
- Optional: dab station or ISO station
- Optional: DC Quartz Cleaning Solution
- Optional: Temperature gun or dabrite station
Drop by today or check out the Bern Gallery website. Bundle discounts are available when you are buying a full setup, so stop by to perfect your dabbing experience!