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How to Smoke Cannabis Concentrates with a Rig

If you’ve walked into a smoke shop or entered a dispensary, you’ve most likely seen a form of cannabis concentrates or a rig. For those searching for an even stronger high, then this might be for you!

What are Cannabis Concentrates?

Cannabis concentrates are a highly concentrated form of marijuana. They’re often more than double the amount of THC found in flower, containing anywhere between 50-80% THC. Concentrates come in various different forms like wax, shatter, oil, and resin.
There are quite a few ways to ingest cannabis concentrates. One of the more popular methods is with a rig.
You can also watch the video tutorial here!

Pros/Cons of smoking cannabis concentrates

One hit of a dab of cannabis concentrate is roughly the equivalent of smoking a whole joint.
Depending on who you are, how often you smoke, and how high you want to get, that statement can be either a pro or a con. No matter what, it should be a statement that invokes caution. Cannabis concentrates are guaranteed to get you extremely high. If you’re relatively new to smoking, this is probably not the place to start. Even to the pros, dabs are a delicate game.
However, if you are looking to ingest a high dose of cannabis – for fun or for medical reasons – concentrates might be for you!

Materials needed/ Necessary vocabulary

Dab Rig:

A dab rig is the same as a glass bong or pipe, but the male piece is a nail instead of a bowl for flower.


Functioning like a bowl, a nail is where the concentrate is placed. Nails are made to withstand extremely high temperatures and come in titanium, glass, ceramic, and quartz. Quartz is the most popular type of nail used, but depending on the type of concentrate you’re smoking, a different nail might be better suited.

Electronic Nail:

Electronic nails are growing more popular as they provide precise temperature control and butane-free heating, but they are also more expensive.


A dabber typically looks like a small shovel. It’s a tool that is used to move your dab from the container to the heated nail so you don’t burn your hand (watch out, it happens!). They can come in different forms depending on the type of concentrate, and are usually made out of glass or stainless steel.


A dab is a dose of cannabis concentrate. As mentioned before, dabs are extremely powerful, and the average size of a dab is as small as a crumb. This may seem tiny, but dabs are extremely potent and the effects hit you much quicker than a joint or bowl would. There are many types of concentrates to choose from, so talk to your budtender about which would best suit you.

Carb Cap:

Though not necessary in order to smoke a rig, a carb cap is highly encouraged. A carb cap is like a big lid for your nail, which you use to cover your concentrate once it’s been placed inside. This helps regulate the airflow and keeps the vapor from dispersing in the air.


If you are using a traditional nail, you’ll need a blow torch or heat gun to heat the nail to the correct temperature, traditional lighters do not throw enough heat to properly heat a nail.

How to dab

Step 1: Grab your torch

First, make sure your nail is securely fastened onto your rig. You don’t want it to be wobbly. If you’re using a traditional nail, point your blow torch at the nail and heat it for about 20-30 seconds (this can change depending on the power of your torch and the thickness of your nail). Many people heat it until the nail starts to get a reddish glow.

Step 2: Let it cool!

Now that you’ve heated your nail, let it cool for a little bit. The timing differs depending on the size and material of your nail, and can range from 10-45 seconds. Many people chose to use a timer at this point, which you can easily set on your phone.

Step 3: Dab time!

Using your dabber, place the dab on the center of the nail. The dab should start evaporating immediately. As you slowly inhale, you can rotate the dabber around to ensure all the dab gets heated on the nail.

Step 4: Cover up

(If you have a carb cap) cover the nail and finish inhaling. Remember to inhale slowly and carefully. If you start coughing immediately, it’s most likely because your nail was too hot when you applied the dab.

Step 5: Clean the banger

Most people clean their nail after every use so it doesn’t get any buildup. The easiest way to do so is to torch your nail to burn off any residue. Once it’s completely cooled down, you can scrape any leftover buildup away.

Step 6: Enjoy your high

You smoked a dab! Relax and enjoy!
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