Your Ultimate Handbook for Dab Rigs in 2019

Your Ultimate Dab Rigs Handbook for 2019

The first time can be a confusing process for people that don’t have much experience when it comes to dabbing. Whether you’re completely new or have dabbed before, it can be hard to find what kind of dab rig would work best for you.

Figuring out what size it should be, what kind of joint it should have, and what percolation is best can seem overwhelming. Picking a dab rig doesn’t have to be complicated and can be a process that is enjoyable. All you need is a little background knowledge to make your own decision of what you want, and be able to communicate that to the head shop employee.

New to Dabbing

For those who are new to dabbing, the process can seem a bit overwhelming. There are a few extra steps involved, but don’t fret. The items used for dabbing are similar to those you would smoke with, and you can spend as much or as little as you’d like to get your first set up.

Dabbing doesn’t have to be hard and it can be as an involved or not involved process as you’d like. The differences between dabbing and smoking cannabis are minimal. Dabbing is easily accessible and can be enjoyed by everyone. The first step is making sure you have the right rig. 

Dab Rig = Dab Bong

Don’t let the ‘rig’ in dab rig intimidate you. It’s not some crazy and elaborate piece of glass to take dabs from. The term ‘dab rig’ is simply a slang term used when addressing a glass bong that is usually smaller in size and higher in percolation used for dabbing cannabis concentrates. 

A dab rig is basically a dab bong. The main difference between a traditional bong and dab rig is that rigs are usually smaller in stature. This helps increase the percolation intensity, providing a smoother dabbing experience. The smaller size also helps with better airflow, which allows the consumer to clean the chamber much faster, and with less breath. Dabbing cannabis concentrates typically requires more lung overall than smoking cannabis flowers. So, using a smaller sized rig can give your lungs some help by letting them work smarter, not harder. 

Dab rigs can vary from clear simple pieces to works of art just like bongs. You can find a rig for under 50 dollars, and you can find some that go for thousands of dollars. Its all about your budget and how you want your rig to look.

What to Look for in Your First Dab Rig

Here are the key factors to consider when purchasing your first rig.


The first thing you need to consider is your budget. On your first dab rig, you should expect to spend between $50 and $200. It really just depends on your budget, and what you feel comfortable spending. Also take into consideration how long you plan to dab for, and if you’re sure that you actually like it. There is no sense in spending extra money if you’re not sure that you’re going to like dabbing.

You can totally spend more than $200 on your first rig, just make sure you’re committed. The more money you spend on your dab rig, the more colored glass you will get for American headies. 


Next thing you should consider is smaller sized pieces are traditionally used as dab rigs to increase the function of the percolation. The smaller size also helps increase the strength of the airflow through the piece that is powered by your inhale. With less volume to breath through, you will be able to clear your rig much faster when compared to something like a beaker bottom bong. If you’re looking for a glass piece, you’ll want to look for one that has some thickness to it.

Thick glass is nice to have for accidental knock overs and it feels much sturdier and premium in your hands. Ask the employee at the head shop if you can put some water in the pieces. This way you can test out the function of the percolators in the down-stem before buying the piece. If that is not an option, ask them more about how the pieces function. A good rule of thumb is to find a smaller piece with more holes in the down stem and the dab rig will have a higher percolation level. 


You will also want to find a rig with a female joint. This means that you put the nail into the joint rather than putting it over the joint. This helps keep the outside of the dab rig free of sticky residue that can be transferred to your hands. After you find some rigs that meet these guidelines, pick one that you like the best and falls into your budget. 

Types of Dab Rigs

Just like flower bongs, there are a variety of types of dab rigs to suit your needs. There are glass options, rigs that heat themselves up, some made from silicone for durability, and mobile options that are made specifically for portability.

The choice rests on you and what you want most from your dab rig. Its all about personal taste, there is no right or wrong choice, just preference. 

Glass Dab Rigs

Dab rigs are commonly made from glass. These are the most popular choice for a person who has been dabbing for a while. 

Glass rigs are great for first time dabbers and seasoned dabbers. They are offered in basic affordable clear varieties up to heady works of art that sell for thousands of dollars. Glass rigs can truly be works of art that belong in a museum.

The nice thing about a glass dab rig is it offers a sort of familiarity to those who have used a glass bong before. It can help someone that is looking to just get into dabbing retain some familiarity. 

Electric Dab Rig

Electric dab rigs are a great option because they don’t need a torch to heat up the nail. This is good for those who may be intimidated at the thought of using a hand torch to heat up a nail. 

E-rigs use electricity to heat the nail up to a specific temperature. They’re convenient because it removes the need to time your cool downs to avoid taking hot dabs. They won’t get too hot because of the preset temperature gauge.

Electric rigs ensure that you take your dab at the right temperature every time doing all the thinking for you. Portability is another great bonus from electric dab rigs due to their lack of need for a torch. 

Silicone Dab Rig

Silicone dab rigs are great for traveling as they can’t really break.  They are also super easy to clean.

Since they are offered in a variety of colors this could appeal to someone who was looking for a flashy style, but didn’t want to spend a lot of money on a full color glass piece. The durability of a silicone rig is perfect for the clumsy smoker that is notorious for knocking glass over or someone on the go looking for a more portable option they won’t have to worry about breaking. 

What are the Best Mobile Rig Options

With the rising popularity of dabbing among cannabis consumers, mobile dab rig options have entered the market to provide those who are looking for a convenient on-the-go dabbing experience. Some are just smaller in size for easy packing, while others are smaller in size and electric to provide a real convenience for mobile dabbers.

Portable Dab Rig

A portable rig is great for those who are always on the go. Many dabbers are looking for a way to consume their cannabis concentrates in a convenient manner without losing the luxury of water percolation to smooth out their hits. They are small in size and offer an electric heat up feature that usually just requires the push of a button to bring the nail to the proper temperature. These portable dab rigs are great for taking quality dabs on the go.  

Mini Dab Rig

A mini rig is just a smaller version of a dab rig. These are also called micro-rigs or pendant dab rigs.

Their size makes them extremely mobile. While you may lose some function due to its extreme lack of volume, these rigs are super convenient and can hang around your neck or easily fit into a cup holder. You also still have to heat up the nail with a torch. 

Cheap Dab Rigs

Cheaper affordable rigs are not hard to find at all. They can be found at almost every smoke shop in your area.

These make great introductory pieces into the dabbing world. They aren’t too expensive, so you can make sure you enjoy dabbing before you go out and spend big bucks on a fancier rig. You also won’t feel as bad if it breaks. 

Dab Rigs under $100

Dab rigs under $100.00 are an easy find. They will most likely be Chinese glass and not from an American artist. However there are local glass artists everywhere and you may be able to find something from a local glass artist for under $100. 

Dab Rigs under $50

If you aren’t sure you’re going to enjoy dabbing, try to find a dab rig under $50. You can find one with nice functionality for under 50 dollars before spending any more money on a nicer piece. You can find most dab rigs under 50 dollars at a smoke shop or cigarette shop.

DIY: Homemade Dab Rig

You can make a homemade dab rig, however to make it with water percolation will take some crafty stoner engineering.

An easy way to make your own rig is to use a hard fruit like and apple. Create two holes connected by a channel within the apple, and place your nail in one hole and use the other hole as the mouthpiece.

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