Types of Dabs & Cannabis Concentrates — Which to Choose?
What are Concentrates?
With so many types of dabs available, which one should you choose? Concentrates, oils and extracts, also known as “dabs,” are products that have been processed to extract cannabinoids and terpenes from the cannabis plant while removing excess plant material. The process involves separating the trichomes from the rest of the plant. Because of this, concentrates have a much larger concentration of cannabinoids and terpenes than flower alone.
The oldest type of concentrate is hash, or dried blocks of packed kief. People have been making it for thousands of years. Originally, the technique involved hand collecting and separating the hash. While some small shops still incorporate traditional solvent-free methods, most producers have moved to solvent-based extraction.
During solvent-based extraction, essential oils within the cannabis plant are separated using chemical solvents such as butane, propane, alcohol and CO2. Solvent-based extraction will make many different consistencies, depending on how the product is treated. Today, most concentrates and types of dabs are identified based on their consistency.
Usually, the harder a dap is, the less terpenes it contains. Concentrates with gooey and saucy consistencies tend to have the highest amounts of terpenes. However, if the concentrate is too runny, it will be difficult to smoke. To sum it up, concentrate consistency is a matter of personal preference.
And while the terms concentrate and extract are often used interchangeably, they are not actually the same. Extracts are a specific type of concentrate made using solvents. In short, all extracts are concentrates, but not all concentrates are extracts.
Types of Dabs & Cannabis Concentrates
Brittle, see-through concentrate made with solvents
Terpenes are concentrated into a runny liquid, oil or “sauce”
Trichomes are separated using only ice, water and filters
Dried oil with a texture similar to honeycomb
Isolated cannabinoids in their pure crystal form
Sticky and sappy type of concentrate for dabbing
Refined cannabinoid oil free of taste, smell and flavor
Whipped under heat into a cake batter-like texture
Solventless concentrate made using heat and pressure
What are the Benefits of Concentrates?
- Most types of concentrates do not need to be smoked. For example, most consumers choose to go smoke-free by vaporizing or even eating them.
- Cannabis concentrates are potent and effective. So, it takes less product to get the results you’re looking for.
- Extracts are refined. Essential oils and cannabinoids are separated from plant material to create a smooth, clean flavor-forward experience.
You don’t need to have a fancy dab rig set up to enjoy smoking concentrates because you can get an extra boost of potency just by simply mixing your flower with powdery kief or wrapping some wax around your joint.
If you are looking to further explore the world of dabs, you’ll want to invest in a dab rig. Dab rings are usually made of glass, ceramic, titanium or quartz and are equipped with a “nail” (the equivalent of the bowl of a bowl), which is heated up and applied directly to the concentrate, creating vapor which is then inhaled. Traditional methods require a high-temperature torch to heat up the nail, but electric nails are also on the market.
In addition, most weed stores carry a selection of vape pens. A vape pen is a discreet and portable option for smoking concentrates. Although it will not produce vapor as potent as a dab rig, it is an excellent choice for convenience.
Vape pens consist of a battery-operated heating element that is activated either by a button or by taking a drag, and a cartridge which is then heated up and vaporized. While some cartridges can be refilled and reused, you’ll find a selection of pre-filled vape cartridges at your local dispensary. Most of these are designed to fit most vape pens using universal 510 threads.
Different types of concentrates require different levels of heat in order to burn properly. Therefore, you should check with your budtender to make sure your rig is compatible.
How Else Can Concentrates be Consumed?
Most people are familiar with “dabbing,” or heating up a concentrate and inhaling its vapors. But you do not need to dab in order to consume concentrates. Other options include tinctures, topicals and edibles.
Visit Smyth Cannabis Co. For All Types of Dabs & Concentrate Supplies
Smyth Cannabis Co. in Lowell, MA offers the highest quality cannabis flower, pre-rolls, edibles, concentrates and more. Whether you’re already a dab lord or just getting started, our friendly budtenders will help you pick a concentrate and get you set up with any necessary rigs. Come visit us in Lowell to learn more about our lab tested products.