Сannabis world is known for its ever-expanding markets and exponential rate of innovation. There’s a constant flow of emerging products—things to inhale and different ways to inhale them. Breeders, extractors, and seed banks have created a domain of healthy competition that has set a feedback loop into motion. As a result, pioneers within the industry are continually producing the “next best things”.
Cannabis concentrates are a massive part of the industry. These inhalables started life as crude creations, and have evolved into pure, high-potency substances crafted in state of the art facilities. Among these elite concentrates, a few stand out as being the gold standard. Terp sauce is one such creation. This clean and tasty extract is a mix of aromatic terpenes and pure THCA crystals. It’s risen through the ranks to emerge as one of the most potent and popular extracts on the market.
Cannabis concentrates are exactly as they sound. They’re homogeneous masses of the active constituents within the cannabis plant. This gives them an appeal over raw flowers in terms of purity, quality, and potency. Concentrates and extracts are largely the same, but differ in one key area. All extracts are concentrates, in that they feature high concentrations of cannabinoids and/or terpenes. However, not all concentrates are extracts. This is because extracts use solvents to dissolve the desired substances into a solution.
Humans have indulged in cannabis concentrates for thousands of years. Charas and hash are some of the oldest forms. Both are created by rubbing the trichomes off of fresh or dried cannabis flowers. Dry sift hash—or kief—is another basic form of concentrate. It involves sieving dried cannabis flowers to dislodge trichomes into a collection tray.
Modern technology has given rise to a host of different concentrates that outweigh these traditional options when it comes to potency. These include solvent concentrates such as shatter, CO₂ oil, butane hash oil (BHO), Rick Simpson oil (RSO), and live resin. Some of the most popular solventless extracts include rosin, distillate, and bubble hash.
What’s in a Name?: Cannabis Concentrates vs. Extracts
Though concentrates and extracts may seem the same, they are a bit different. In fact, it all boils down (pardon the pun!) to how concentrates and extracts are created. In each case, trichomes are collected in slightly different ways.
Extracts are created using a solvent such as alcohol or carbon dioxide. This eliminates the trichomes from the plant and what is left can be used as an extract. Concentrates are made much in the same way, except solvents are not used.
Examples of solvent extractions include butane hash oil, Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) and CO2. Each solvent can be further broken down according to texture. These textures include shatter, badder, budder and crumble. Examples of concentrates include rosin, dry sift and kief.
For users not in the know, dabbing can be a great way to get a strong hit of THC. It is often the way that most users get the most from their extracts. These extracts are placed on a hot surface (called a “nail”), heated thoroughly and then inhaled through a dab rig mouthpiece.
A dab rig (also known as an “oil rig”) is a set-up that can be made of a number of materials, including glass. It is a type of bong that allows users to inhale the vapor that comes from the heated extracts. Many users consider this to be a much safer practice than smoking, and they also feel they get a more powerful hit. Most extracts utilize THC to deliver a high that’s not only powerful but long-lasting. Unlike CBD, THC contains most of the psychoactive compounds that marijuana is known for.
THC sauce can often be more than 50% terpenes, though the sauce contains many other contributing phytochemicals and cannabinoids. THC sauce can provide an incredible hit, but and it is considered a full-spectrum experience.
This is because full-spectrum describes cannabis that is whole, including the trichomes. However, THC sauce, even though the trichomes have been stripped away, still contains many of the potent cannabinoids, phytochemicals, and THC.
Terpenes often give foods and plants their aromatic uniqueness. Pine trees often have their smell due to terpenes and so do many citrus fruits. Terpenes often work synergistically with the major components of cannabis to enhance any benefits.
Get a Dab Rig – and Enjoy “The Sauce!”
Those who are used to conventional methods of smoking may not be familiar with the kinds of dab rigs on the market. Dab rigs are another way that users can get a hit. Rather than using traditional herbs and nuggets that are the distinction of most cannabis strains like Blue Haze or Hawaiian Punch, many users feel they get more from cannabis by utilizing extracts.
A dab rig is a specialized piece that includes several different parts. Don’t mistake a bong for dab rig, even though they do look very similar. However, dab rigs are often a bit smaller than bongs. Dab rigs are connected to a nail for heating and a “bowl” that holds the extract or concentrate. The biggest difference between bongs and dab rigs is that dab rigs are the best tool to use for concentrates and extracts.
Dab rigs are typically made smaller as the small size makes for less drag and the steam given off can travel to the lungs more efficiently. Dab rigs are also typified by “joints.” These joints are usually labeled “male” or “female”. Other parts include:
Mouthpiece: The mouthpiece is exactly how it sounds – it’s the place you put your lips and get a good inhale. If you want a strong hit, be sure there is little space between your lips and the mouthpiece area.
Stem: This is the part that moves the vapor from the extract that has been heated from the nail through the water chamber and into the mouthpiece for a hit. Some dab rigs include an “ice pinch” so that users can add ice and cool the vapor.
Water Chamber: The water chamber is where users add water. The stem is usually smaller than the chamber and many water chambers contain a percolator as well. The percolator contains holes that produce a series of bubbles when vapor moves across the chamber. This exposes the vapor to more surface area.
Torch: The torch is a small torch that is typically fueled by propane. It is used to heat the nail on a dab rig.
Nail: The nail is the area that is heated that will turn the extract or concentrate into vapor for consumption. It typically features a flat surface and walls that have a hole. Many nails on the market contain any number of materials, including quartz or ceramic.
There are many kinds of rigs on the market, and there is no one size fits all. Finding the rig that works for you requires users to think about their unique needs, goals, and budget. Users must also think about how they will use their rigs.
Will you be home when you dab; could you use an extensive set-up? Or do you travel frequently and need something more portable? Whatever a user’s situation, these things must be thought out before purchasing.