Whether you ate a newbie or a hardcore stoner, chances are that the terms dab rigs and bongs are a whole new language to you. Only the biggest lovers of pot would be familiar with dab rigs also known as concentrate rig or oil rig.
The dab rigs have a close resemblance to bongs but are specialized for dabbing—which is smoking of marijuana concentrates (shatter, oil and wax).
Bong, on the other hand, is a specialized smoking device that has been used for decades by stoners.
Generally, a bong can be a dab rig and a dab rig can be a bong. But if you take keenly observe the details of each; you will notice a difference between the two. Therefore, if you intend to get the best out of your smoking sessions, then you must ensure that you are using the right piece.
What are the main differences between dab rigs and bongs?See how smokes travel in a bong:
See how smokes travel in a dab rig:
There exist some significant differences between the two. Here are some of the main ones:
- Their use
- Method of consumption
- Their delivery methods
Their Use/what is consumed
The main difference between the dab rigs and bongs is what you will be consumed out of them. Bongs are used for smoking flowers, tobacco, and dry herbs. Dab rigs, on the other hand, are used for dabbing legal concentrates like oil, wax, and honey. However, they are both types of water pipes that use percolation to filter the vapor or smoke.
Method of consumption
Bongs are used in smoking flower through the combustion method of lighting the herb. The smoke is then inhaled through the mouthpiece. An oil/dab rig is used to dab vapor from a concentrate using a nail and a torch.
The delivery method (Dab nail or bowl piece)
Typically, water pipes including bongs and dab rings come with a female or male joint that will fit any glass accessories. Bongs have a bowl piece that goes into the joint where you can smoke flowers or dry herb using a traditional lighter.
To vaporize concentrates, however, you will need to attach a dab nail to the joint on the water pipe. Next, you will need to heat the dab nail with a torch and place your concentrates in the hot nail so as to vaporize them.
When a bowl piece is added to a water pipe, it becomes a bong and when a dab nail is added to the water pipe, it becomes a dab rig.
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Size is what brings a difference between a dab rig and a bong. When smoking flowers or dry herbs, you need a more substantial piece with numerous percolators for optimal filtration and cooling.
However, when smoking concentrates, you will want a smaller piece with minimal percolators. This is because, when combusting flowers in a bong, the smoke can travel for long distances and the more percolations it goes through, the smother it will be to your lungs.
A glass bong will in most cases will have a larger size than the dab rig. The reason is that combusted dry herb does not vaporize. So you can have the bong as big as you want it to be as the smoke will travel through the bong without sticking on the glass.
When vaporizing concentrates at lower temperatures than combustion, a smaller piece with minimal percolations is what you need. This is to ensure that the vapor reaches your lungs as soon as possible without any flavor and potency being lost. A small dab rig is sensible. This is because a small-sized dab rig maintains the vapor condensed and milky.
For the most part, bongs and dab rigs cost the same. But the price will depend on how fancy one wishes to get. Dabs rigs are typically a bit expensive than bongs. This is as a result of the accessories that you need to ensure correct dabbing. Some of the accessories that you will need include:
- Dab torch
- Dab nail
- Dabber tool
- Carp cap
Bongs and dab rigs might look similar to the untrained eye, but they have a slight difference in their accessories and the consumption methods used. Bongs are mainly used for smoking flower and dry herbs while dab rigs are designed for dabbing concentrates.
Again before you can buy a water pipe or dab rig, you need to consider:
- The parts involved with each system/delivery system
- What you will be smoking
- Overall size
- The cost
- The method of consumption
Tips for Buying the best Rig for Dabs
If you want to invest in a dab rig, you can easily be overwhelmed by the many types available. It can be intimidating when you try to understand terms such as nails, domes,etc. But you don’t need to feel left out.
Similar to other smoking devices, there are low-end, simple dab rigs, high-end dab rigs, and mid-level device. All these have an assortment of additional features.
Standard dab rigs kit have three pieces: a glass piece, a nail, and a torch lighter. You can opt to buy the cheapest model but you must pay attention to the most vital part of the setup the heating or nail arrangement.
Based on what you prefer, you have several choices of nail surface material. You can either choose ceramic, titanium, quartz or glass. While you may prefer one type of material over the other, your choice will have a minimal effect on the flavor. On the contrary, it will only affect the maximum temperature of the nail and how long it can maintain that temperature.
If you are using the dab rig for the first time, you might consider buying the domed nail. Domed nail requires little maintenance but offer a less airflow. Domeless nails require a lot of maintenance but are designed to offer more airflow. The domed nails also have a smaller size and require less heating time compared to domeless nails.
When buying the torch, choose to use butane. Propane gets hot too quickly. Buy a small torch with a manageable flame to prevent heating up the dib glass.