Wax concentrates are exploding in popularity as more cannabis consumers discover dabbing, the art of delicately burning your wax into a thick, flavor-filled vapor. Many people prefer dabbing because the wax is typically of a higher concentration than herb, so when you get just the right hit, it’s much stronger than a joint. However, dabbing can pose some challenges and difficulties, as it’s a bit more difficult than just putting a flame to the flower.
If you’ve ever smoked concentrates, you likely already know that the best way to get the strongest, smoothest flavor of your wax with every dab is to heat your product at the lowest temperature possible. When using a nail that you’re heating yourself, this can be an incredibly tricky and exact science. With too hot of a nail you’re going to toast and sizzle it, with too low of a nail you risk melting it into a pool of liquid with none of the effects coming your way. This is a great way to waste wax, time, and money, which is the last thing you want to do with your precious liquid gold.
With a carb cap, all of the drama that comes with nail dabbing is out the window. Short for “carburetor,” carb caps are designed to, much like a carburetor, control the air pressure of your rig and the temperature of the surface of the dab area after you drop the dab on the nail. The accumulated pressure inside the carb creates a swell of heat to evenly surround your wax, which allows it to quickly warm and produce vapor at a lower temperature than traditional dabbing. The result is flavor-filled, potent vapor that’s easier on the lungs without the burn. When you can pull off these lower temperatures, you can more easily maintain the terpene and flavonoid content that otherwise burns up if the wax gets too hot. If you’re a true connoisseur and you want to taste the terpene profile of your wax, this is what you’ll need to master if you want to succeed.
With the growing popularity of dabbing, there are several kinds of carb cap dabbers on the market like domeless nails, buckets, and bangers, all designed to provide a unique smoking experience. This guide will help you decipher the many different types of carb caps to determine which one is best for your dabbing desires.
Best Carb Cap Dabbers
DIRECTIONAL CARB CAP
Works with Thermal Banger Nail
This durable quartz carb cap is designed for directional airflow that allows for the lowest temperatures possible while dabbing, leaving you with the most flavorful plumes of smoke you never thought were possible. The ball style works with a thermal banger nail, so you can attach it right to your favorite glass piece for effortless, high-quality hits every time. With a price tag of only $3.99, this is a great option for newbies who want to test out carb caps without investing a whole lot in a new piece of glass or equipment.
STANDARD CARB CAP
Compatible With Most Quartz
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This standard style carb cap by Hillside Glass is designed to work with most quartz bangers. It features a single airflow hole for consistent heat that doesn’t cause your wax to pool into a useless liquid. At $14.99, this is more than the directional quartz banger but still an affordable piece for your collection.
HEMPER CARB CAP
This custom HEMPER Carb Cap is one of the most popular products of the brand. Initially included in the Strain Central x HEMPER IVXX Express Kit, became a must-have product due to its amazing pineapple design and how it works with quartz banger nails. Besides, its unique design also allows airflow slit for maximum vaporization so you don’t left over concentrate.
WORKED BANGER CAP
For dabbers who want to get fancy, this iDab Glass piece features colorful swirled glass in a variety of teal, orange, and pearlescent colors for low-temperature dabs that are both tasty and stylish. At $54 this is one of the pricier carb caps on the list, but it is a great addition to any collector’s stash and the quality is well worth the price.
RUBBER DUCK CARB CAP
Fits Most Glass Bangers
This carb cap is exactly what it says – a rubber duck! Perfect for when you want to bring out the conversation starter piece to pass around at a party. For $7, this adorable ducky will fit in most glass bangers, so you can add it to any piece for smooth dabs that won’t burn your throat (or wax).
Types of Carb Caps
The carb cap market includes a variety of different styles including buckets, domeless nails, and bangers, each of which provides something slightly different and works with your nail in a different way. Regardless of what kind you’re buying, if you already have a rig you plan to use it with, it’s important to keep a few factors in mind.
First, you are going to want to make sure the size of your carb cap matches the size of your nail to ensure you have the right amount of air going in and out. Too much or too little space between the cap and the nail will take the easy part out of this whole thing and you’ll end up wasting your wax. For this reason, it’s also important to consider the shape of the cap and how it’s going to work with your rig. As long as it matches with the type of nail, you should be fine. If you keep the size and shape in mind, you can find all sorts of carb caps, both functional and stylish, that suit your needs.
Titanium Carb Cap
When choosing the material your carb cap is made of, it mostly depends on aesthetics and how clumsy you are. Most dabbers prefer carb caps that match the look of the nail for the sake of style and consistency. If you want something fun and artistic, you’re more likely to find that in glass carb caps as they come in a variety of styles from different glass artists. Always make sure it is made with high-quality borosilicate glass so you don’t risk breaking it when exposed to heat. But if you’re more concerned with functionality and want something that will never break, that’s when you’ll want a titanium carb cap made with grade 2 or 3 titanium. Titanium carb caps are the most durable option, hands down.
Directional Flow Carb Cap
Directional flow carb caps are designed a little differently than others and are available in glass or titanium. They still restrict the air flow to create pressure, but the angled downtube stems down through the cap, which pushes the oil around the bottom of the bucket as you rotate it for the biggest vapes you’ve ever seen. This kind of carb cap is extra fun when you get the hang of it.
Quartz Carb Cap
Many dabbers will say that if you want the best flavor with every hit no matter what, go with a quartz carb cap. These are more delicate than titanium, but they are available in all sizes and styles so you can find one that works right with your nail.
Hollow Carb Cap
Hollow carb caps are designed to place over nails that do not have a flat or even profile, which can make it difficult to use some other caps. Choosing the wrong piece can cause too much or too little airflow, so if your piece is difficult to pair, a simple hollow cap might be the right option for you.