Here at Cheese London we’ve been partial to all things cannabis related for as long as we can remember. However, it wasn’t until a trip to the U.S. in 2014 that the team was introduced to the incredible world of cannabis concentrates. Since then, we’ve been obsessed with the whole process, from closed loop butane extraction systems, to full melt bubble hash rosin pressed through screens to de-wax. Even as we write this we’re coughing uncontrollably because we just hit a dab of Blue Cheese BHO way too hot off a titanium nail. Don’t worry if this doesn’t make sense yet, here is Cheese London’s guide to dabbing:
Although dabbing has existed for around a decade, it’s only in the last few years that it has really come to prominence. It is a process whereby the plant oils are first extracted and then heated enough to release the psychoactive effects without combusting. Its big appeal, aside from arguably being the cleanest way to inhale cannabis extracts to date, is that it gets you super high.
So, first off and most importantly, you are going to need a high tolerance to THC to start dabbing. It is a far more intense experience than simply hitting a joint. Effects will obviously differ with each strain but remember, it is a “concentrate” after all.
The equipment you need to get started:
- A Glass Rig
- A Nail: Titanium/Quartz/Ceramic are all available and all have different qualities (quartz is generally preferred by connoisseurs but to each their own)
- A good quality blow torch (we use Vector)
- Some delicious concentrates!
Now for the dabbing itself: The nail is heated red hot with a blowtorch, then left to cool for 20-40 seconds. A nail is a machined piece that comes in various shapes and sizes that attaches to your existing bong or fits onto specially made ‘rigs’. It’s essentially a bowl-like area that can be highly heated, where solid concentrates can melt and become liquid whilst not spilling everywhere. How long you heat for depends on how hot you like to dab. The hotter the nail the higher you get, but terpene retention (flavor) is lost. The lower the temperature, the more flavor.
Once the nail is at the desired temperature, a small amount of concentrate is then applied to the nail as you begin to inhale through the rig. The water cools the concentrate in the same manner that a bong cools smoke. A ‘Carb Cap’ is placed over the nail to avoid any valuable concentrate vapor being lost. And that’s it. You are now as high as you’ve ever been.
Unfortunately for us, concentrates are incredibly hard to source in the UK. You’ll either need to be pretty determined and decide to embark on the journey of making your own, or you know someone that was and has. Believe us, it takes no small amount of effort to make this stuff. And if you’re talking Butane extraction, then you run the risk of blowing yourself up so don’t try this stuff at home unless you have a combined aptitude for both tech and science. Better yet, get yourself out into the world and make yourself some decent concentrate connections. If you live in the U.S., or any other part of world with a more liberal stance on cannabis, then chances are you’ll have an easier time tracking them down. Steer clear of any dark oil or anything that hasn’t been produced by a respected extractor. Health is wealth after all.
We’ve been born and raised on the good old English spliff: traditionally mixed with a blend of tobacco and weed. And whilst we quickly graduated to pure weed—and we’ll never grow tired of a good hit from a well rolled joint—we’re in no doubt that dabbing is the future of weed consumption.