How to Use a Dab Rig
So, it’s your first time using a dab rig and you’re not quite sure where to begin. Don’t worry, we all started somewhere. Today we’ll go over the how to use a dab rig for the smoothest, tastiest rips.
What You’ll Need
Before you get started, make sure you have all the necessary equipment. Dabbing is a bit more complicated than smoking flower, so follow this checklist:
- A nail (titanium, quartz, or ceramic).
- A torch or an e-nail. An e-nail is an electronically heated coil that wraps around your nail.
If you’re missing any of the items listed above, we stock everything you need to start dabbing here at BadassGlass. From dab rigs to dabbing tools, we have a huge selection with something for everyone.
Getting Started - Heating the Nail
Dabbing is easy once you get the hang of it. The most important part is heating your nail, which requires a torch or an e-nail. Although e-nails are more expensive than torches initially, some people think it’s worth the investment. That’s because e-nails don’t require refilling like torches. E-nails are also easier to use. You simply attach the coil and set the temperature. The e-nail does the work for you.
Whether you decide to use a torch or an e-nail, the next step is to heat your nail. Nails must be hot enough to vaporize the concentrate on contact, but not so hot that they burn the concentrate. Believe it or not, dabbing, or vaporizing, occurs at temperatures much lower than smoking traditional herb.
So, what’s the perfect dabbing temperature? Most experienced users agree that low-temp dabs are the way to go. Low-temp dabs occur between 350-450°F. Any higher than that and you begin to lose both the flavor and potency of your dab. High-temp dabs, or dabs taken off a red-hot nail, are much harsher than low-temp dabs.
If you’re using a torch, it will take some experimentation to learn when a nail is at the perfect temperature. How long it takes depends on the size, style, and material of your nail. Titanium, for example, heats up fast than quartz, but also loses its heat more quickly. Experiment by torching your nail red hot and waiting 30 seconds or so to take a dab. Add or subtract time depending on your experience. Eventually, you’ll know when a nail has reached its sweet spot without needing to make it red hot first.
Next Step - Taking a Dab
Once your nail’s heated, it’s finally time to take a dab! This part’s pretty easy if you’ve ever smoked from a bong or bubbler before. Instead of “packing” your nail like a bowl piece, you instead gather some concentrate onto a dab tool and touch it to the inside of the nail. If your nail is properly heated, the concentrate will vaporize on contact. Inhale starting at the moment you touch a dab to the nail.
This part does take a little finessing. Depending on the type of concentrate, it may be stickier or more liquid. You may have to drag or manipulate the concentrate around the nail as you take a hit. Many dabbers use carb caps to help get the most from their dabs. Carb caps work just the way carbs in regular pipes and bongs work. Place the carb cap over the nail while you inhale to “stoke” the nail and increase vapor production. Pull the carb cap away to for more airflow while you pull through. This gives you better control over how much vapor is produced, and allows you to smoke a whole dab without any leftover puddles.
Congratulations! If you can follow these few easy steps, you will have officially taken your first dab. Like all worthwhile ventures, dabbing takes some time to perfect. It might take some practice, but it will be worth it when you get a clean, milky hit.
Remember, if you’re having trouble vaporizing all your concentrate or are left with puddles at the end of a dab, try using a carb cap. If you can’t get the right temperature with a regular torch, e-nails are an awesome alternative. Good luck and happy dabbing!