Dabbing is the latest trend to hit the cannabis scene, but is using a homemade dab rig the best way to consume concentrate? If you’re short on cash or can’t get your hands on a high-quality dab rig setup, it’s vital to know about the possible dangers of making dabs at home.
Join us to discover more about the pros and cons of making a homemade rig for dabs and learn how to take dabs without a rig.
Let’s dive in!
4 dangers of using a homemade dab rig
Multiple methods of cannabis consumption exist. Apart from smoking marijuana the old-fashioned way, you can also bake edibles, vape, or use tinÇctures and topical pot products.
Dabbing is the latest 420 trend, and it’s highly effective. A dab is a concentrated dose of weed that resembles candle wax. Tokers typically make dabs at home with the assistance of a pre-made or homemade dab rig.
The art of dabbing takes some practice. This technique involves placing cannabis trimmings into a metal or glass pipe and blasting them with butane to extract the THC. The final product is a sticky and thick substance that looks like candle wax.
The official name for a dab is butane hash oil, which tokers then smoke using a pipe or bong. Dabbing promises an extremely powerful high, so it’s important to take caution when you make and use dabs.
Although dabbing is quickly becoming the next big thing in cannabis culture, it’s vital to be aware of the possible dangers of homemade dab rigs. Let’s explore some of these potential risks:
1. Burns, fires, and explosions
When you make a dab, you need to decide between using an alcohol or butane solvent.
If you use butane in your dab rig setup, you’ll need to pass it through your marijuana to extract the THC oils. However, butane is extremely flammable and volatile, so if you don’t have enough experience or make a wrong move, you could end up with third-degree burns.
Some at-home suggestions also involve butter knives, electric car lighters, and paperclips. These DIY solutions are equally dangerous and should be approached with caution.
Many experts state that homemade dab rigs that use butane are equally as dangerous as home-run meth labs. Cannabis blasting can easily result in severe burns, fires, and explosions.
A safer and easier alternative is to use alcohol as the solvent during extraction. Collect some prepared small buds, place them in a glass, and douse them in alcohol for about ten minutes. Remember to stir periodically.
Next, heat a pot on the stove and pour your mixture inside to evaporate the alcohol. Avoid high temperatures as they can break the chemical structure of the cannabinoids. If all goes well, you’ll end up with a sticky mass.
Repeat the evaporation process a few times to get rid of the alcohol and filter the concentrate through a coffee filter. Then, place the jar of concentrate in warm water and wait. Before attempting this THC extraction method, make sure you do your research on alcohol solvents and homemade dab rigs.
2. Toxic chemicals and other contaminants
Although some states permit the recreational sale of cannabis concentrates like live resin, wax, or shatter, these marijuana products remain illegal on a federal level. As a result, any dabs you buy are unregulated and may contain dozens of additives and chemicals.
A 2015 research study discovered that more than 80% of cannabis extracts sampled contained poisonous chemicals and pesticide residue from the extraction process. If you’re not a professional that knows how to make a dab rig, you can easily contaminate your own dabs.
Using a butane torch, warming plastic material, and other actions can release toxic fumes that harm your body. In some cases, the residual chemicals can lead to a negative reaction and pose long-term health risks.
Most people think that inhaling the butane torch fumes is bad enough, so imagine what else you’re breathing into your lungs when you use a dodgy dab rig setup.
3. Risk of shattering
If you decide you truly must make a homemade rig for dabs, try to avoid using glass. Although it’s one of the most commonly used dab rig parts, the everyday glass you have at home isn’t suitable for dabbing.
Regular glass is thin, low-quality, and easily shatters from high heat. Splinters aren’t fun to clean up and can lead to deep cuts, so steer clear from using glass in your dab rig setup.
4. Possible side effects from high potency
Dabs are extremely powerful and deliver one of the strongest marijuana highs possible. To give you some perspective, many cannabis enthusiasts refer to them as ‘pot on steroids.’
A single toke of marijuana concentrate emits anywhere from three to ten times the amount of THC found in a typical joint. The average weed buds have around 12% THC, while a dab can contain up to 80% THC.
What’s the danger in this? In short, dabbing hits your body with an intense high, and regularly exposing your body to these effects can lead to psychosis, increased heart rate, memory loss, hallucinations, and paranoia.
Pair this with the dangers of using a homemade dab rig, and you’ve got a bit of a sticky situation.
How to smoke dabs without a rig
The best way to dab is to use a high-quality, pre–made wax rig. If you can’t get your hands on one of these, we have some excellent alternatives to help you learn how to smoke dabs without a rig.
If you’re a regular dabber, it might be worth your while to invest in a nectar collector. This nifty device is small, portable, and operated with one hand. You don’t need a dabbing tool, and no concentrate goes to waste. Using a nectar collector is easy, convenient, and keeps you safe from burns and toxic fumes, unlike a homemade dab rig.
Drop it in a bowl
If you want to learn how to smoke dabs without a rig, you can start by using a bowl. Pack half of it with flower and drop your concentrate on top using a metal dabber. Finish packing the bowl, and enjoy the ride.
It’s crucial to drop the dab halfway in, as an open flame degrades the quality and burns the THC that you want to inhale.
Roll a joint
Another way to learn how to hit dabs without a rig is by doing it the old-fashioned way. Grab some marijuana, rolling paper, a filter, and your wax.
Start by laying out your rolling paper and filter, and spread the weed on top like you usually would. Add some concentrate to the cannabis, and continue rolling your joint. Smoke it as usual, and have fun with the extra strong effects.
Use a vape pen
If you’ve got a vape pen, batteries, and a cartridge, you can learn how to smoke dabs without a rig in no time. Make sure you have the right kind of pen, typically one with a detachable atomizer (the heating element, usually a metal coil heated by a battery).
Start by picking up a small bit of wax with the end of a metal dabber. Disconnect the metal coil from the battery and place the wax on it. Ensure it isn’t heated and that your dabber doesn’t touch the coil.
Next, turn the battery on and reconnect the metal coil. Attach the mouthpiece, press and hold the button, and slowly inhale the vapor. If you smoke too fast, it lowers the heat and emits less vapor. Congratulations, you’ve found an excellent alternative to a homemade dab rig.
Substitute a bong for your dab rig
When times are tight, you can repurpose your bong into a homemade rig for dabs. It’s challenging to get a proper dab hit from a tall bong, so use a smaller one.
First, get your hands on a dab nail with a correctly-sized ground joint. Most bongs are female-jointed, so you need to use a male-jointed dab nail for the ideal fit.
Don’t use a bong with a percolator, as it can impair the terpenes and drastically reduce any flavors and aromas. The carb cap, torch, and dabber are still required, but a bong can get the job if you don’t have the right dab rig setup.
The lowdown on dabbing and homemade rigs
If you want to consume marijuana in a flavorful and efficient manner, dabbing is the way to go. The best way to inhale this concentrated vapor is by using a pre-made wax rig, but not everyone has this luxury, so they choose to make their own homemade dab rigs.
A homemade dab rig comes with many downsides, including the risk of burns, fires, explosions, toxic fumes, contaminants, and health issues. Luckily, there are multiple methods you can use to safely and conveniently smoke dabs.
Remember to buy your marijuana seeds from Homegrown Cannabis Co. Don’t forget to check out our blog for expert tips and tricks on cultivating cannabis.