How to Use a Dab Rig for Beginners

person using a dab rig

A dab rig is a little bit confusing. Somewhat similar to a bong, but a dab rig isn’t intended to be lit on fire with just a lighter. Rather, it has a nail instead of a bowl, that gets heated with a butane torch, and extracted concentrates from different strains of herbs are then “dabbed” onto it with a heat-resistant dabber tool. When the concentrates are warmed, they create a vapor that you breathe in. As opposed to the noxious smoke that you get from actually smoking. Dab rigs are a particular kind of water pipe utilized basically to intake oils, concentrates, or wax/shatter.

They tend to be smaller in size since they’re used for concentrated forms of cannabis, which means a little goes a long way! A dab rig is accompanied by a glass/titanium/quartz nail and dome, but one may also use a domeless nail such as a banger or a bucket. E-nails (electric nails) are also very popular in today’s dab scene and can usually be found sold alongside oil rigs.

Most dab rig set ups are comprised of only three parts: a glass piece, a nail, and a butane torch.

You can utilize an oil rig to attain a similar level of high that you’d get from toking a few fat bowls off of a conventional pipe or bong but with a single dab rip. The adequacy of dabbing is one of the numerous reasons that it has soared in prevalence as of late and it clarifies, for that reason, why there’s been such an influx of dabbing devices available as well.

What You Will Need For a Dab Rig

A Dab Rig

This is likely the most essential piece of this whole ordeal, as there is truly no real way to dab without it. When we say “dab rig”, we are alluding to the adjusted water pipe that has turned into the go-to piece for dabbing. Rather than a glass bowl such as the ones used for conventional bongs, you have either a male or female jointed nail or domeless nail (usually 10mm, 14mm or 18mm/19mm for the most part) from which you would heat and place your wax.

In the old days, dab rigs generally had a male joint for use with a nail and dome. A female joint couldn’t hold a nail as the opening would have been too large and the nail would fall into the joint, so they made dab rigs with male joints to solve that issue. Now, there are so many different kind of nails and domeless nails that less and less male joints are being used for dab rigs.

A “Nail”

There are two common kinds of nails available nowadays, domed titanium nails or quartz nails of the somewhat olden days (circa maybe 10 years ago lol). Or the more recent and convenient counterparts called the domeless nail, frequently referred to as “banger nails.” Stay far from cheap glass nails completely as they break almost immediately under extreme heat, which could be risky for anyone that is lit at the moment. The expression “domeless” just alludes to the early ages of nails, which required a glass dome to encompass them and catch the vapor. The business has since, for the most part, moved far from this style, which requires extra pieces and coordination, for the dome less course of action, in which the vapor is sucked through an opening or opening down into the apparatus.

Carb Cap / Dabber

The times of the modest craftsmen’s mud chiseling executes or dental instruments utilized as dabbers are long past — the carb cap plus dabber combo is the manner in which that most veteran dabbers focused shoppers have gone over the most in the recent two years. The dabber part of the tool is straightforward: You simply pick or poke your dabs onto the end of your dabber to get your concentrates onto the surface of the hot nail, then flip it around to cover your dome or banger with the carb cap end.

Dab Rag/Mat

In spite of the fact that you can unquestionably dab without these things, your home will conceivably turn into a sticky bad dream, covered in insanely sticky & thick dab oil that splashes off the nail, stray dabs that may fall and instantly adhere to the table, and so on. Nowadays, numerous companies make inexpensive and hand crafted dab mats that can prevent these annoying instances.


This is most likely the scariest piece of the dabbing arsenal, for the faint of heart. Warming a bit of glass or metal with a butane torch invokes intimidating pictures of a wide range of different terrible scenarios of burning house or worse, your own limbs! However, it is a begrudgingly essential piece of the experience for the individuals who don’t have $250-in addition to spend on a super easy to use e-nail. Go to your nearby head shop or smoke store and search for a culinary-style burner that stands up individually, of large or medium size, with a solid enough fire to get the your nail intensely hot in a short amount of time. A sturdy and safe butane torch can run anywhere from $30 to $100 depending upon size and quality.

3 Easy Steps to Use a Rig

  1. First of all, a rig and accessories set up is a must on the basis of dab pad or oil slick pad for a no-mess sesh.
  2. Then you have to use your torch to heat your nail very carefully. The optimum duration for heating quartz nails is 30 seconds with a torch, with a 45-second cooldown. For titanium nails (Ti nails) 30 seconds heated with a torch, with a 10-second cooldown.
  3. At last, place your wax onto your nail with your dabber tool then cover the nail with your carb cap. Inhale slowly then release immediately, emptying out the vapor from your lungs.

Dabbing is pretty much a straightforward process and as long as you follow these super simple steps, you’re golden! Just as a quick rundown, the initial step to dabbing is to heat the nail with your torch until your nail emits a light red glow. Allow your nail to cool down a little as hot dab rips are definitely not something anyone enjoys. So we suggest using a timer like the one on your watch or cell phone. Once cooled, cover your nail with your heat resistant carb cap and inhale. Clean your nail with a q-tip after every rip to prevent burnt dab residue from mixing into the flavor of your new, fresh dabs.


Dabbing isn’t the same as smoking so we suggest that you don’t try to “hold it in” for long lengths like when smoking a joint, bong or hand pipe. Dabs are a greatly concentrated type of cannabis so a little goes a long way! Taking a low temperature dab will enable you to appreciate the majority of the advantages from concentrates like smoothness, taste, and impact. Safety should especially be kept in mind when utilizing a torch and quartz nail or banger/bucket. As overheating any kind of glass can definitely lead to shattered glass shards around your dabbing area. Always time your torching, be careful not to burn yourself or your surrounding things near your rig, and don’t drop your rig or torch! Safety is key and we all know we get a little clumsy when we’re already lit.


Though dabbing is a very serious dose compared to simply smoking dry herb. It is very useful for getting high and utilizes a smaller amount of extract as opposed to large amounts of flower. So use a dab rig carefully and enjoy.