How to Consume Concentrates; a dabbing guide for beginners
Concentrates are high potent cannabidiol (CBD) or tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentrated mass that looks like butter or honey. This term is used when referring to both marijuana and hemp concentrates.
You may wonder what the difference is, between cannabis, hemp, and marijuana. Cannabis is a term referring to both hemp and marijuana.
Marijuana is a term referring to cannabis varieties having more than 0.03% tetrahydrocannabinol composition measured in dry form, while Hemp is a term referring to cannabis varieties with THC content lower than 0.03%.
It is often easy to confuse between concentrates and extracts. This article explains the difference between extracts and concentrates. If you are a beginner to concentrate, it also highlights all you need to know about concentrates and how to consume them safely.
Let's get started:
Concentrate vs Extract
The two terms confuse even the experienced cannabis users. They end up using the terms interchangeably which is absolutely wrong.
The key difference is on how they are made; extracts are obtained from the cannabis plant by use of a solvent while concentrates are obtained through isolation of resin by a mechanical process.
Why Choose Concentrates?
Consumption of concentrates has gained popularity over the years. But why? Here are some reasons why they are preferred and probably reasons why you need to try them out.
Concentrates are concentrated with active ingredients with little or no fluff in them. This is why they are more potent than any other form of cannabis consumption. Potency is the strength to make you "high". High potency means getting you "high" with a few puffs.
Cannabis has a strong smell when smoked. Even in states where cannabis is legal, no one wants to be followed with that kind of smell everywhere. (Even though that smell can be amazing:))
Concentrates can either be dabbed or vaped. These two methods ensure not much smell is given off when you are done dabbing or vaping.
Some people feel that Cannabis has an unpleasant taste that can put you off. Concentrates ensure limited contact between your sense of taste and cannabis. Only vapor gets to you and it travels straight to the lungs.
Methods of Consuming Concentrates
Since concentrates have become popular over the past years because of their potency, it is important to look at the main methods through which you can consume them. The main ones include;
This method has existed for decades now. With the advancements in technology, new extraction methods have led to more cannabis concentrates in the market. The concentrates have helped dabbing and the device used to consume them, gain popularity. How is this done?
How to Dab
The term may sound ambiguous but once you learn how to do it, it's actually quite simple. This is a complete guide on how to dab safely.
Firstly, select a concentrate that you love (budder, wax, hash oil and shatter). Apart from appearance, there are no major differences between them. They offer the same effects when dabbed.
Alongside a dab rig, you will need a nail such as a ceramic, titanium or quartz nail, such as a quartz banger, a dabber, carb cap and torch. You can get the entire set once. After getting all these, it is now time for the real experience.
Load some little amount of your concentrate in the dabber for easy accessibility. Heat the nail to red hot using a blowtorch. Slowly lower the dabber containing your concentrate to the red hot nail and then inhale the resulting vapor. When you are inhaling, cover the nail with the carb cap to avoid losing any vapor.
Dabbing Safety Measures
If you are already experienced in dabbing or looking yet to begin, it is wise to note the dangers that might come as a result of dabbing and how to go about them. This does not however mean that dabbing is that dangerous. These are only precautions for a better dabbing experience.
Fake and unverified cartridges pose the greatest threat to human life, especially on the brain. On the same line, making your own concentrates is equally risky if the correct process is not used.
Here are some safety measure you need to pay attention to;
Understanding how to regulate temperatures in your dab rig goes a long way to helping you have a better dabbing experience. Too much heat lowers the potency of the concentrate in a cartridge.
Recent research showed that high temperatures convert terpenes into harmful methacrolein (MC). Its effects are recognized when it exceeds 0.03%.
Dabs are produced through a rigorous process involving butane gas. Therefore the concentrate has some butane traces. Butane is volatile and a wrong ignition by a beginner will break into fire.
Tutorials and availability of local resources have led to production of Dabs locally. They should not be confused with normal pots that can easily be improvised.
To ensure such does not occur, make sure the torch plug and nozzle are compatible to prevent leakages of butane. Once more, before ignition, confirm that all flammable substances are not exposed.
Keep an Eye on the Nail
Most accidents, especially for beginners, are as a result of burns. You are likely to brush your hand on the hot nail if your dabber is too short. Use a longer dabber to avoid this.
Cleanliness is paramount when taking anything into your body. Clean everything after every dabbing session. A dab rig collects dirt once left to lie for some time. There are specific cleaners for your dab rig that can be used.
This will make it wear out quickly and also increases the chances of inhaling harmful substances.
This should not scare you. Health risks come when something is not done right. Inhaling extremely high potent concentrate past the quantity your body can withstand, is likely to make you experience psychosis, blackouts, hallucinations, paranoia, and rapid heartbeat.
Your body can quickly become tolerant to some given amount of concentrate. This will definitely prompt you to increase the amount. Continued increment of quantity, may lead to the above risks.
This method has also been in existence for decades now. It was initially done using desktop vaporizers like the Puffco Peak. With advanced technology, there are portable vaporizers now, like the APX Wax Pen. A portable vaporizer contains;
- Cartridge- this is where the concentrate is placed before heating. It is usually designed for a specific concentrate. Usually found in either ceramic, steel, or glass materials. Once it is depleted, you replace it with another one.
It is usually important to note how too much heat affects the potency of your concentrate. Strength is the main reason for using concentrates.
If you are a beginner, begin vaping low quantities until you get the right amount for your body. The vaporizer is designed to help you out when learning.
Through Water Pipes
With increased health concerns, individuals have shifted to using more health-friendly methods. The use of glass pipes is one of the methods. It involves passing of smoke or vapor through the water. This kind of glass pipes are called bongs.
Just like other forms of cannabis, concentrates can be dabbed over the water for filtration purposes. The main function of water is to filter out small substances out of vapor before it gets to the lungs.
It also cools down the vapor to make it easier for the lungs to handle, and prevent irritation of the throat.
Vaping and dabbing differ in terms of devices used, but the two serve almost the same function which is to make cannabis consumption easier and enjoyable. Vapor is healthier than smoke. From taste to smell the two cannot be compared. Vapor wins all the way.
It is evident that with time, more methods of marijuana consumption are yet to be discovered. But as it stands, to have an exciting dabbing or vaping experience you require a good dab rig or vaporizer.
Like all other devices, make sure to use a quality device that will serve you for a long time, like a Puffco Peak. Other than quality, correct use of the devices while observing all the safety measures, will earn you a great experience with minimal risks.