Dabbing is becoming one of the most popular ways to consume marijuana–but it can be overwhelming when you’re a beginner. Dabbing requires more equipment and set up than other methods, so it’s not as intuitive as smoking a joint or eating an edible. However, once you know how to do it, dabbing is a quick and easy process.
If you’re interested in learning how to smoke dabs, we’re here to help. In this beginner’s guide, we’re answering frequently asked questions about dabbing, giving an overview of the equipment you’ll need, and sharing step-by-step instructions on how to smoke dabs.
Dabbing is how you consume cannabis concentrates that are meant to be vaporized, also known as dabs. Dabbing is how people smoke concentrates like wax, shatter, and hash oil.
There are many reasons someone might prefer dabbing to other consumption methods, but a top reason is that dabs are highly potent. This ultra concentrated form of the cannabis plant ranges from around 60% to 90% THC. Compare that to cannabis flower, which typically has a THC level of 10% to 25%.
Another reason people like dabbing is flavor. Concentrates are rich in trichomes, which makes them potent–but also more flavorful and fragrant. And, unlike smoking flower, dabbing doesn’t create smoke that can affect flavor and aroma. With dabbing, there’s no smokey smell or taste.
Marijuana concentrates that can dabbed include:
Note that some types of cannabis concentrates are not on this list–that’s because they’re not meant to be dabbed. Highly flammable, alcohol-based extracts (such as alcohol-based Rick Simpson oil, tinctures, and ISO Wax) are not meant to be dabbed.
If you’re unsure of how to use a particular form of concentrate, check with your dispensary to make sure you know the right way to use your product.
Smoking concentrates requires more equipment than most consumption methods. Let’s break down what you need to smoke dabs.
To smoke dabs, you need a main rig and some accessories.
For your main rig, you can use one of three options:
To use a dab rig, you need a few accessories:
There are also optional accessories to consider:
Lastly, these things will help you keep your dab rig clean:
Once you have your equipment, it’s time to start dabbing. E-rigs, dab pens, and e-nails can have unique instructions that are specific to the exact product, so be sure to carefully read your device’s manual before using it. If you’re using a traditional dab rig, follow these five steps.
Use your dabber tool to pick up a small amount of your concentrate of choice, then set it aside for later use. Remember that concentrates are highly potent. If you’re not sure how much to pick up, err on the side of using too little rather than using too much.
Add water to your dab rig’s water chamber. If you’re not sure how much water to add, try inhaling on your mouthpiece with no dab nail in place. If water splashes into your mouth, you need to pour water out.
Using your torch, heat your dab nail until it’s red. Apply the torch to the outside and bottom of your dab nail. Remember to be careful when you’re done using your torch. Be sure it’s turned off when you set it down.
Once the nail is very hot, stop applying heat and allow it to cool off for around 30 to 45 seconds. You want your nail to be hot enough to vaporize your dabs, but not so hot that it scorches them.
After your nail has cooled off a bit, add your dab to the nail using your dabber tool and slowly inhale. You can rotate your dabber tool in the hot nail to heat your dab evenly and avoid sticking. Inhale slowly and evenly.
If you have a carb cap, you can quickly place it over your nail after adding your dab. Experiment with adjusting your carb cap as needed to keep an ideal temperature.
Lastly, clean your nail when you’re done using it. A quick swipe with a cotton swab is good enough to clean extra material from most ceramic nails, glass nails, titanium nails, and quartz nails. But if your nail has any stubborn, sticky residue, clean it with a drop of isopropyl alcohol and a cotton swab.
We hope this guide has been helpful for beginners who are just starting to dabble in dabbing. If you have any questions about dabs or how to use them, visit a DC Collective dispensary near you and speak with one of our expert team members.
⚠️WARNING: Products sold on this site can expose you to chemicals including marijuana smoke, which are known to the State of California to cause cancer. For more information, go to http://www.P65Warnings.ca.gov
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