A Beginners Guide To Cannabis Concentrates: What Are Dabs & How Do I Smoke A Dab?
Today I’m going to talk about my preferred method of medicating, and that’s dabbing on some concentrates. What is ‘dabbing on concentrates’ you say? Well, I’m happy you asked, and I’m more than happy to educate you!
Basically, dabbing is a method of smoking concentrated cannabis using a hot surface to flash vaporize the medication before inhaling. Much like using a bong for flower, only with much higher temperatures to heat the marijuana concentrate.
Concentrates come in many forms and are known by even more names, such as shatter, wax, oil, BHO, and honey, among others. As the name suggests, these are concentrated forms of cannabis medications and are far more potent than the marijuana plants and flower from which they are derived. Most buds, or flower as they’re sometimes called, tend to be anywhere between 10 to 25% THC, with those numbers getting higher all the time. But with cannabis extraction techniques and the concentrates they produce, the THC levels are upwards of 60 to 80%, and that’s a considerable difference!
You should be warned that because of the significantly higher levels of THC, and what can be considered a harshness to the vapors, dabbing isn’t for everyone, and should be approached with respect and caution. If you’re new to cannabis, then this is something that you’re going to want to prepare yourself for. A little dab can go a long way, and looks can be deceiving, so don’t think that you can hit a concentrate the same way that you might be used to hitting flower buds. That’s left for seasoned veterans of the dabbing game. I mean, you can, but that’s going to be an experience that you won’t soon forget!!
What Do I Need To Take A Dab
The Tools Of The Trade 🙂
The methods in which to dab have been getting better and better by the day. But just to start we’ll make it simple and not complicate the process any more than it needs to be.
Your Cannabis Extract –
As we said before, these will come in a plethora of forms, but the most common kinds of concentrates are either CO2 or Butane, as well as solventless extracts. These are all fine to dab, but the ones you’re going to want to be mindful of are the alcohol-based concentrates for it is far too dangerous to your health to risk.
Your Water Pipe / Bong –
These are often referred to as ‘dabbing rigs’. But if you don’t want to purchase a new one then just replace your glass bowl pieces out with dabbing attachments that will fit air-tight.
A Dabbing Nail –
You have a choice of what kind of dabbing nail that you can use, from titanium, to quartz, to ceramic it just depends on your preference.
Your Nail Dome/Carb Cap –
This piece is typically made of glass and is placed on top of your nail to trap the vapor before you inhale it.
Your Torch –
You must use a torch to heat your dabs. These can either be propane or butane. There are flame-less methods called e-nails which are pricey, but fantastic and worth the money.
Your Dabber –
This piece is just a piece of metal, glass, or ceramic tool that is used to apply the concentrate.
Photos By: @grophotoaz
How Much Should I Dab?
Depending on the type of extracts you get, they’re going to have different THC levels with their composition. So with that being said, you need to do your research before you just go off and get into something that may be a little too much for you at the time. But Weedly’s suggestion is to start off with just a little to see how it affects you.
A small dab is the size of a crumb (we told you, a little goes a long way). While it may not look like a lot, we’ve seen the littlest amount put down the biggest people, so you have to think about how this will end up for you.
Even if you smoke a lot of flower, you’re still going to want to be mindful and not over-do things as you will pay for it later.
How Do I Smoke The Dab?
Once your dab rig is set up with all the necessary pieces and a dab on your dabber, you’re going to want to heat your nail with your torch in order to get it to the right level of heat.
Step 1: Heating Your Nail
Turn your torch on and aim it at the nail. Wait for it to become heated all around the nail until it becomes red-hot. Some prefer to let the nail cool and do a ‘low-temp dab’, while others will just hit it right after it’s heated. Be careful though, high temp dabs may cause cancer.
Step 2: Applying The Dab
Now take your dabber and apply the dab to the nail. While swishing and rotating it around to ensure that you’re getting all the dab off of the dabber. Then place the dome over the nail and proceed to inhale steadily until either the rig is cleared or you can feel it in your lungs.
Step 3: Blast-off
Now you will feel the effects of the dab. Don’t worry if you start sweating or coughing and becoming light-headed as it’s all apart of the experience. Make sure you can lay down if need be; as well as have some water on deck to qualm the coughing.
I would hope that I wouldn’t have to put this disclaimer in here, but there are folks who will attempt to remove the nail as they would on a glass bowl with flower. Be careful, that shit’s hot!
Photos By: @scottsdalecannabisclub
Where Can I Get Dabs In Phoenix?
If you’re looking for dispensaries to get your concentrates from, may I suggest Arizona Organix, Reef Dispensaries or The Nirvana Center as they offer grams of concentrates for under $25, which is a lot easier on your pocketbooks than the dabs are be on your lungs!
So … now speaking of dabs, excuse me while I go take a little dab break and we’ll see you next time for the next blog!