When dabbing, there are no universal tools for measurement, and seldom do dabber tools suffice in pointing to the direction of a sufficient dab size. For newcomers, the saying, “Start with a small dab” doesn’t help…
Fortunately, there are a few tricks to better understand the dosage of your dab, as well as a couple of techniques you can utilize to give you a more accurate understanding of the strength of your concentrates.
Read The Label.
Most markets are required to add, at the very least, some cannabinoid information on their concentrate packaging. On the more liberal end of that spectrum are products containing key cannabinoid markers and, in some cases, a basic terpenoid profile. A majority of hash oil products will contain at the very least total THC content, with certain products going a step further to indicate the ratio of THCA to THC. This will give you a general indicator as to how potent your hash oil is.
Potency is broken down into a percentage. Most solvent-based hash oils will land in the range of 60-90% total cannabinoids, with a few special examples exceeding 90%. Let’s use an example of a one-gram sample hash oil that contains 80% total THC. That one gram will contain 800mg of total cannabinoids. For reference, the recommended starting dosage for an edible is between 5-10%. This should be an indicator that dabbing is not for those who are new to consuming cannabis. Obtaining a 5mg dab from a freeform sample of hash oil in any consistency is next to impossible.
Use the Proper Equipment.
Dabber tools come in a myriad of shapes and sizes. There is absolutely no standard for a collection tool when it comes to dosing concentrates, so choosing the right tool for the job will come down to a few factors, an important one being handle-ability. If you can only choose one tool, pick one with versatility in handling different concentrate consistencies.
For instance, a pointed dabber tool is not going to be effective in portioning a sap or high terpene, full-spectrum extract. Conversely, a scooper tool isn’t the best option for somebody trying to tackle the monumentally frustrating act of breaking apart shatter (cue searching around a carpet for rogue shards). Dabber tools with broad tips, like paddle dabbers or various shapes, are versatile enough to handle most consistencies.
Let’s refer back to our aforementioned one-gram sample. At 80% total THC, your gram will contain around 800mg of cannabinoids (assuming there are no other cannabinoid markers present). If you took your gram and split it into eight portions as evenly as you could, you would be left with eight 100mg portions. Granted, this procedure is much easier to achieve with some hash oil consistencies than others. Shatters portion relatively easily if you heat up your dabber tool and use it to slice through your sample like a hot butter knife. Waxes and crumbles may be a bit harder to handle.
Always Start Small.
Don’t be afraid to take the smallest dab that your tool will allow you to load and to use that as a reference point. Like wine tasting, micro-dabbing has a world of benefits, such as affording you the opportunity to take another dose if you desire. Try to find a dab size that works for you and apply your preference consistently. This way, your only dosage variable will be in the total cannabinoid content of whatever sample you’re consuming. And remember, you can always go back for more.
Consider other options. (i.e. Vape cartridges)
If portioning seems like too much work, you may want to consider pre-portioned options such as vaporizer cartridges. These products take much of the guesswork out of dosing hash oils by offering them in a more manageable delivery vehicle. Cartridges are a fantastic way of dosing a quick dab without having to overcomplicate the work by offering a “one hit=one dose” option.
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