What Is Dabbing? A Complete Guide to Dab for Beginners • Cannabis Nation Dispensaries

Smoking concentrates/extracts has become rapidly popular in the cannabis community, and chances are you have heard of it. This style of cannabis consumption is often called “dabbing” – not to be mistaken for the popular dance move. The act of “dabbing” is a little different than smoking flower, but don’t be intimidated!

Dabbing is the process of heating and inhaling cannabis concentrates via a dab rig or device like the Puffco.

Many cannabis users enjoy using dabs for the intense high potency effects. In addition to dabbing THC, many people are exploring how to dab with CBD and the many non-psychoactive bodily benefits. Dabbing CBD allows higher concentrations of CBD to be inhaled at one time.

In summary, when dabbing, you use a similar process when smoking a bong. A piece of concentrate is dropping into the dab “bowl”, which is called a Banger. Instead of a lighter to smoke, dabbers use a small hand-held torch to heat up the Banger. Once the banger has been heated for 14-30 seconds and cooled for 14-30 seconds, the smoker scoops the concentrate into the Banger using a metal tool. The heat from the crystal melts the concentrate and creates a vapor that is then inhaled. Many dabbers use a small Carb Cap to increase the amount of vapor received.

You will need higher temperatures to vaporize cannabis to get the vapor for inhaling it, but you should also be careful not to overheat your banger or dabs. With conventional dabbing, there is always room for burnt oil. You can find stylish electronic devices that help you practice dabbing without losing out on experiencing the ultimate pleasure of smoking cannabis, visit Puffco to see an example of one of the top electronic dabbing devices. You do not have to use the blow torch with these electronic gadgets as they offer effective and safe ways to consume cannabis concentrates.

A dab rig is a glass pipe chamber, similar to a bong. The main difference is a dab rig primarily uses a banger or nail, rather than a bowl. There are many sizes, shapes, designs, for dab rigs. Also, you get different types of materials to choose from as per your dabbing requirements. if you are searching for a glass rig, shop at any  Cannabis Nation Dispensary to find the perfect piece for your budget.

Once you have purchased your dab rig, dabs and accessories, you will need to learn the technique to use these rigs appropriately to master the dabbing process. But according to the users, once you get used to this component, there is no looking back.

In addition to a rig, you will need: a metal dabber tool, a torch, torch fuel, a carb cap, and a dab mat. To get the perfect rig for dabbing, you need to know some basic features about the glass and about the dabs you are interested in consuming. Ask your budtender for assistance if you are unsure.

The term “concentrates” is more of an umbrella term, whereas the world of dabbing is huge. Dabs can be all types of textures, flavors, potencies, and consistencies depending on the heat and pressure process used to create them. Because there are so many types, they all have different names. Wax, oil, shatter, crumble, hash, and many more. They all generally are consumed the same exact way, so, what really is the difference between the types of concentrates?

To keep it simple, it all boils down to the process of keeping the desired parts of the plant (like the cannabinoids and terpenes) and purging the rest of the undesired plant matter. There are 2 ways this is done, via Concentration or Extraction.

CANNABIS CONCENTRATES are made by using a mechanical process to CONCENTRATE the trichomes.

A few well-known forms of Cannabis Concentrate are:

  • Kief: You may have made this concentrate yourself without even realizing it! Kief is a byproduct of grinding flower and has a soft powdery consistency. A perfect addition to bowls or joints, and wonderfully potent.
  • Hash/Hashish: Made by pressing kief into a disc or a ball and had a darker color and more flowery taste. Hash is one of the oldest ways humans have been concentrating flower for hundreds of years!
  • Ice Hash/Bubble Hash: Flower is filtered through iced cheesecloth to freeze the trichomes, creating a bubble hash. Bubble hash can be fine sand-like texture, almost like kief.
  • Hash Rosin: Hash Rosin is normally extremely potent in terpenes and one of the higher-priced dabs on the current market. Made by using a combination of heat and pressure and typically NO solvents, Hash Rosin has a varying “budder/badder” consistency.

As already highlighted above, these dabs are available in variable shape, size, and potency. Choosing the appropriate one gives you the chance to master your dabbing process. Here are some different varieties of solvent dabs available in the market for reference:

  • Live Resin: Quite different from the other extracts as it is made from the newly harvested trims or nugs that remain frozen cryogenically during the extraction processes.

CANNABIS EXTRACTS are made by using an added solvent (removed by the end of the process) to EXTRACT the desired cannabinoids. Solvents include but are not limited to Butane (BHO), Propane (PHO), alcohol, and ethanol.

A list below includes some common forms of Butane Hash Oil – BHO Extracts, some you may be familiar with seeing in our Cannabis Nation stores!                                                                                                                                                                             

  • Sap: soft and oozy, but not as runny as oil. 
  • Sugar Sauce: sticky and generally thicker than any liquids. Small, and crystal-like cannabis concentrate.
  • Wax: one of the most common forms of BHO available on the market, wax is solid, but soft and pliable. 
  • Crumble: a bit harder than wax, crumble easily breaks apart when handled. 
  • Honeycomb: as the name suggests, it is soft but brittle and looks like just the honeycomb.
  • Budder: a whipped, highly pure, and rare form of BHO, budder has the smooth consistency of butter. The users are crazy about this one, as it is creamy and smooth to use daily.
  • Pull and snap: BHO that can be pulled and snapped into smaller pieces (similar to taffy). 
  • Shatter: BHO in its hardest form, shatter takes on the consistency of glass. Next to wax, this is one of the most widely available types of BHO. Translucent, creamy, brittle, making it less malleable.
  • Live Resin: This happens when manufacturers flash-freeze cannabis plants mere minutes after they are harvested, rather than curing them (as is done with the plant material used for most BHO products). The result is an aromatic, flavorful marijuana extract with a robust terpene profile and potent levels of cannabinoids. 

Now that you are knowledgable about dabs, dab rigs, and accessories, it is time to dab safely. Here are top ideas on how to start dabbing without being an expert:

Get the Concentrate
The first thing you need is a cannabis concentrate to start your dabbing. You will want to source your dabs from a reputable dispensary with knowledgable budtenders. Whether you are buying dabs on a budget or the highest-quality extracts available, ask your budtender questions to get closer to your desired effect. If the product looks very dark, has other particulates, or otherwise has a strange characteristic, ask for a different brand that also carries concentrates.

Prepare the Rig
Once you have the concentrate ready, it is time to prepare the dab rig. The main safety concerns with rigs are the quality of the glass and stability at the dab station. When dabbing it is important to choose a higher quality rig and banger as they will need to withstand heat and regular use. Crystal is the best option for bangers, because it can withstand regular and intense heat. Electric rigs, on the other hand, are ideal for the beginners for multiple reasons: they are easy to use, sturdy, versatile, and hassle-free cleaning.

Heating the Nail/Banger
When you are heating the banger, it is important to heat the crystal but not to the point where the entire bottom of the banger turns red. However, you can use this method to clean your banger if it becomes black on the inside, a by-product of not regularly cleaning after each session. The second thing to remember is to let your banger/nail cool to a lower temperate BEFORE you drop your dabs in. Burning any cannabis oil at a volatile temperature is dangerous and damaging to the lungs. The general rule is to let your banger/nail cool for as long as you heated it.

Start Dabbing
Start inhaling the concentrate very slowly and keep rotating the carb cap to push airflow around inside the banger, which further heats the cannabis oil into a vapor. Gentle inhale and be sure to exhale completely to empty your lungs of all vapor.

If this is your first time, make sure you are comfortably seated and have a glass of water to clear your throat after the dab.

While “dabs” are not at all a new way to consume cannabis, the community is taking the activity to new heights in the day of “e-rigs” or “electronic dab rigs” made specifically for vaporizing concentrates/extracts.

You can also use vape pens and other electronic dab rigs to use the cannabis extracts instead of the traditional dab rig. However, for beginners, it is safe to start with the rigs first. In either case, make sure to know the rules and regulations regarding cannabis smoking in your state.

Looking for dabs in Oregon? Cannabis Nation is known for having exceptional dabs for excellent prices. One of our most popular types of extracts we sell (apart from our low-priced shatter) is our LIVE RESIN. Usually bursting with high terpene content, our Live Resin is a bargain compared to others on the market. We also have made consuming Live Resin even easier with our exclusive Cannabis Nation Live Resin Cartridges!

In conclusion, the world of dabbing is a big one, but rewarding to get into. There are all types of concentrates even outside of the ones listed in this blog post, like consumable RSO/FECO oil, high CBD concentrates, and more!

Are you a beginner or an expert? Share your dabbing story with the reader right here!


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