Dabbing is becoming more and more popular; chances are if you've been smoking for a while now you've probably heard about it or tried it yourself. It's also called budder (my favorite name for it), wax, shatter, or crumble. Dabbing probably got the name from the tiny amount of product it usually takes to get the desired effect. It's pretty much marijuana on steroids which is then mixed with some explosive material that will make you feel so high, you'll think it's never coming down again. It's about 4 times as strong as a joint and -listen to this- you get the high all at once! So for you newbs out there--take it easy.
Now technically speaking, dabs are made by extracting THC and other cannabinoids with the use of a solvent like butane. Butane gas is passed through a tube filled with weed plant matter. Cannabis resins are crystallized by the liquid butane at a low temperature. Butane can easily be evaporated away and then there will be nothing left but the resin; the concentrated dose of cannabis. The result is a wonderfully sticky oil that is brownish-yellowish looking, kind of like hot candle wax that brings the user an abundance of highs.
Although there's plenty of online sources that will show you how to DIY, the chemicals involved are super dangerous. Butane is highly combustible and carelessness or accidents can create a Breaking Bad situation with the full on explosion included.
Dabbing is nothing like rolling up a joint and passing it around. You're going to need a few more pieces of equipment. First off, you're going to need a dab rig. Dab rigs are made up of a glass piece, a nail, a torch lighter, and a dabber. If you're a beginner you can try to find a dab rig with all the components already included As you become more accustomed to the whole process you will want to branch out and use different pieces to suit your own personal style. You don't need a deluxe glass piece to take a dab, any old one will do. The only thing to really watch out for is to avoid a piece that will diffuse and cool down the vapor very much. It will make the vapor turn back into liquid causing it to be stuck on the inside of your piece. This dilemma is called reclaim.
The next piece of equipment is a nail; it's the bowl you use when you're dabbing. There are nails made out of ceramic, quartz, glass, and titanium.The nail's job is to heat the concentrate to the point where it causes it to vaporize. So, it needs to heat up quickly and retain heat.
Glass nails are cheap, but don't expect them to last you very long or to retain heat. Although ceramic retains heat better than glass, it doesn't last long either. Quartz lasts much longer than glass and ceramic but it has trouble retaining heat so you won't get a lot of vapor with it. Titanium is pretty much the way to go. It will last you a long time and hold on to heat very well...almost too well to the point where you can burn the dab. Many dabbers will use water diffusers with titanium nails to avoid burning their concentrates.
Also, you will see that some nails will have a dome. This is a personal preference if you want one or not with a dome. Some people don't like them because it has to be slid into place. However, nails with domes are a lot safer and and they help hold the vapor in so that you can inhale more of it.
You can use a lighter to heat the dab but a torch is way more fun. Don't get a blowtorch, it is way too big. Mini torches that use butane are the best, avoid propane ones.
Lastly, you're going to use a dabber. It's a long glass piece that you are going to put the dab on and touch to the heated nail. You can use a household objects like a paper clip if you don't have a dabber. However, household objects can contain contaminants, so I would recommend using a tool specifically made for dabbing.
Now how to actually take a dab hit... You're going to put the nail by the end of a curved pipe. The curved pipe is heated with a lighter or torch then a dab of the cannabis resin is put on the end of a glass rod and touched to the nail. You'll then inhale the vapor through the glass pipe and--boom! Now you're blasted into outer space!
People with chronic pain or nausea have said that dabbing is the way to go. It gets them the relief they need fast (let me repeat; 4 times a joint... AT ONCE!) It's not for everybody, you either love it or it's just too strong for you. Either way, it's making a big impact in the cannabis world.
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