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How To Choose A Dab Rig

How To Choose A Dab Rig
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How To Choose A Dab Rig

Tips on how to choose a dab rig that best suits your needs.

Cannabis concentrates have increased in accessibility and popularity since the concept of “dabbing” was introduced. Now there are many different consistencies of dabs and almost as many different ways to consume them. When it comes time to choose a dab rig, you’ll want the best piece of equipment for the job. The best dab rig won’t share much in common with the best bong.

Most of us start by using a bong in the place of a dab rig with a nail that fits. However, doing dabs out of a three-foot bong isn’t as satisfying as it is with a bowl of burning weed. We’ll give you some tips to help you pick the best piece for your dabbing needs.

Size Matters

When you choose a dab rig, make sure you’re not getting something too bulky. Most people do dabs to feel the effects of cannabis more quickly and with more intensity. A bigger piece is better if you want to spread a single dab hit into several easier to inhale puffs. However, most dabbers use smaller rigs for constant, quick delivery with less effort on the lungs.

The concept of dabbing challenged glass blowers to create highly-functional designs in more compact sizes. In fact, there are functioning rigs that are shorter than a standard BIC lighter in height.

However, small isn’t for everyone. For example, anyone planning to use an e-nail in combination with their dab rig will want something that won’t easily tip over from the weight of the coil or wires. Extremely compact dab rigs are best for use when traveling.

One Joint Won’t Fit All

For a while, most bongs designed for use with dabbing came with male joints to fit the popular dome and nail combination used to consume concentrates at the time.

Then, domeless nails and quartz bangers became popular. It was easier to make joints to fit on any bong with the domeless and banger designs. Since then, male-jointed dab rigs haven’t been as popular. As a result, smoke shops are ordering less of the best quartz bangers for male-jointed rigs.

Also, be conscious of the fact that some joints come out at a 45-degree angle while others are at a 90-degree angle. If you have a 45-degree joint you’ll want a banger with a 45-degree neck or you’ll have to tilt your rig back every time you dab to evenly vaporize the oils.

How Much Percolation Is Necessary?

Percolation isn’t as important on a dab rig as it is with a bong for dry herbs. However, certain percolators work better on dab rigs than they do on bongs. For example, having several chambers with percolators will help reduce the harshness of a bong rip. However, low-temperature dabs are vapor which is less harsh than smoke and requires less filtration to be cooled. Recycler dab rigs are ideal for anyone looking for a cooler dab hit.

When you choose a dab rig percolator the first thing you’ll want is something that won’t clog easily. Otherwise, you’ll have to clean your dab rig after a few dabs to keep it functioning properly. Tiny holes are more likely to clog.

The more percolators there are, the harder it will be to clear the dab. If you’d prefer to get it all done as quickly as possible, you’re better off with less filtration.

More Convenient Options

Having to torch a dab nail to fully enjoy cannabis concentrates has kept many people from picking up extracts. To some, it’s too much of a hassle to deal with. Others feel as though having a torch and small glass piece will associate them with the use of harder drugs. It is also a safety concern because both the nail and torch can burn you.

Vape Pens

As a result, portable wax pens or batteries for pre-filled THC cartridges have been the preference of those that want to steer clear of a torch. However, unless you are putting your loose extracts in one of the best vape pens for cannabis concentrates the experience rarely compares to a proper low-temp dab. Fortunately, there are still several alternatives to a torch and rig that will better mimic the experience.

Portable E-nails

For those that dislike the idea of having to choose a dab rig, nail, carb cap and torch but enjoy the experience, there are simpler ways to start dabbing.

In fact, there are now several devices designed to make the dab rig more accessible to the everyday cannabis consumer. There are portable e-nails with water attachments, carb caps and everything you need to start dabbing in one device on our list of the best e-nails.


The Peak is the latest innovation to the world of dabbing by Puffco. It is the closest thing to the carb cap, torch and dab rig experience without a need to purchase them all separately. The Peak is a “smart rig” that removes all of the complications from low-temperature dabbing while maintaining the same feeling.

In fact, you’ll get close to the same flavorful results as a low to high-temperature dab using a quartz insert with less effort required. Skip torching for close to a minute to fully heat a nail. The most time you’ll have to wait to start dabbing with the peak is about 20 seconds from when you start heating.

You can put your most terpene-rich BHO or full melt solventless hash oil in their electronic device without feeling like you’re missing out on any of the flavor or potency. Many older portable devices for concentrates rapidly heated concentrates instantly burning away the flavor and giving off harsher hits. You could put a huge glob in and watch it disappear in two flavorless hits.

The peak heats rapidly enough for you to start dabbing within 15 seconds but never enough to burn the terpenes off of your concentrates. As long as you have it on the right setting for the size dab you load. There are four settings to accommodate small, medium, large and glob sized loads.

You can get up to 30 flavorful dabs before needing to charge the device. Most torches won’t go that long before needing more butane.

There are a few things to consider when choosing a dab rig: the size, joint size, percolation and your personal needs. We recommend dab rigs with bent necks because it will keep your face/hair further away from the hot nail. Anyone that doesn’t want to use a torch or be bothered with the process of low-temperature dabbing, should look into a portable e-nail or smart rig.

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