What is dabbing?  A 710 History

What is dabbing? A 710 History

What is dabbing?  Well, well, where to begin?  


In short, dabbing is a method of vaporizing herbal extracts, called concentrates or oils.  The name is derived from the fact that a small amount of concentrate goes a long way; only a little “dab” of oil is needed.


While vaporization itself is believed to have originated in ancient Egypt, placing botanical material on red-hot stones, the techniques and toolkit collectively referred to as dabbing today are a much more recent innovation.


The modern technology looks more or less like this:


  1. A water pipe, called an oil rig or dab rig, is configured by exchanging the bowl for a nail
  2. The nail is heated using a butane torch or an e-nail (electronic nail)
  3. A small amount of concentrate is picked up using a dab tool
  4. The dab of concentrate is applied to the nail where it begins to vaporize
  5. A carb cap is used to restrict the airflow à la the rush hole on a hand pipe

This is the basic premise, although dabbing can also use devices like nectar collectors, vape pens, and battery-powered e-nails.  Another variation is the cold-temperature dab, where heat isn’t applied until after the concentrate is placed onto the nail.


So, what are the advantages of this ingestion method?


First, vaporization minimizes the inhalation of non-desirables that would stem from the combustion of the herbal material itself.  Done properly, the inhaled vapor is also much cooler, making it smoother on the lungs and overall a more pleasant experience than smoking flower.


Next is the taste!  When smoking, the burned plant material delivers a charred taste. Using concentrates eliminates the herbal material itself, resulting in a concentrated essential oil.  This concentrated oil, vaporized at a temperature just shy of combustion, delivers a flavor profile leagues beyond even the best burned flower.


Thirdly, is efficiency.  Think about it. When smoking, the cherry stays lit even while you’re not inhaling.  That’s your precious herb, literally going up in smoke while you’re passing it or talking with friends.


And last, but certainly not least, is discreteness.  Smoke odor lingers. It embeds itself in fabric. Vapors much less so.  So that means less paranoia, and less money on products to cover up your “loud” smell.


Welcome to the 710 community!  Oh, right, that’s dab-slang -- “OIL” inverted.