Making dabs at home

Dabbing enthusiasts everywhere, rejoice! Rosin is here, and it’s making some big waves in the extract community. This emerging solventless extraction technique allows anybody to make their own high quality hash oil from the comfort of their home.

The best part about making rosin is that it can be done safely and inexpensively in just minutes by using ordinary household tools. This method utilizes heat and pressure to squeeze the cannabinoid-rich resin from your flowers, bubble hash, or kief. Your average hair straightener, some parchment paper, and a collection tool are all you need to produce a hash oil that rivals hydrocarbon extraction methods in flavor, potency, and effect.

So you wanna know how to make dabs, huh? You’ve come to the right place! We here at Honest Marijuana have been doing this so long (and so well, we might add), we’ve forgotten more about cannabis production (in all its forms) than most people will learn in a lifetime.

That makes us uniquely qualified to tell you everything you need to know about making dabs…even if we do say so ourselves. So that’s what we’re going to do.

But jumping right to the “how to” is a bit like going on Dancing With The Stars without any training: the end result isn’t going to be pretty. So before we tell you how to make dabs, we’re going to give you a bit of background on the subject (dabs, not Dancing With The Stars).

What Is Dabbing?

Dabbing is the process of heating a special form of cannabis and then inhaling the vapor. Dabbing gets its name from the tiny dabs of wax that are used with a special rig (a dab rig) to get high (THC dabs) or get your medicine (CBD dabs).

Let’s take a moment to clarify those two sentences by talking about dabs, wax, and equipment specifically.

What is rosin made of?

Rosin can be made of cannabis flower, kief, or hash. These starting materials can be easily transformed into rosin wax.

Aesthetically, rosin is almost impossible to distinguish from shatter or sap. However, the difference between the two is that rosin is completely free of the residual solvents often left behind by hydrocarbon extraction processes . You can also be making dabs at home in minutes without the dangers associated with using butane.

making dabs at home

Materials for rosin dabs

Learn how to make rosin wax with a DIY rosin press. First, you’ll need to gather a few materials. You may already have most of these items at home, but if not, you should be able easily acquire them quickly and cheaply.

  1. Hair straightener (try to find one with a low setting of around 300°F or lower—any higher and valuable terpenes will evaporate off)
  2. Starting material (this can be cannabis flowers, bubble hash, or kief)
  3. Parchment paper (unbleached, if possible)
  4. Collection tool (many dabber tools work well here, although you can get creative!)
  5. Heat-resistant gloves for safety

What Equipment Will You Need To Dab?

Dabbing requires some specialized equipment, so you can’t just decide one morning that you’re going to try it without first going shopping. Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. Dab rig — A specialized bong used with dabs.
  2. Nail — This isn’t the type of nail you buy at the hardware store.
  3. Dome — Fits over the nail and helps contain the vaporized wax.
  4. Carb cap — Creates a mini oven that helps vaporize the wax at lower temperatures.
making dabs at home

So What’s The Big Deal?

Dabbing is a big deal because the wax or shatter that you use is a concentrated form of the buds you buy at your local dispensary. And by concentrated, we mean really high in THC or CBD. How high exactly? Anywhere from two to four times over regular bud.

Depending on the strain used to start, wax can clock in at 50-90% THC (or CBD). Even the strongest strain only hits around 25%. So you can see why dabbing is such a big deal: You can get seriously high with just one or two hits.

How to Make Dabs at Home

Making dabs can range from easy to incredibly complicated. For beginners, it’s recommended that you purchase ready-made dabs before attempting any DIY methods.


Identical to shatter in many ways, rosin differs in one key area; it does not need nor contain a solvent. This results in a better taste. And the fact that it’s solventless means it’s nowhere near as risky to produce as other methods.

Here’s What You Need

Chances are you have some of the materials required lying around your house already. To make rosin dabs, you’ll need the following:

  • Parchment paper
  • Hair straightener/flat iron
  • Collection tool, such as a dabber
  • Marijuana

Here’s How You Do It

  1. First, turn on the hair straightener to a low or medium setting. If you can control the temperature on your device, aim for somewhere between 250 to 300°F. Leave it to heat up, and start on step 2.
  2. Next, place the cannabis onto the parchment paper. The amount you use should not exceed the width of the straightener, as you’ll be pressing the weed to extract the dabs via heat. Make sure that you’ve left enough paper on either side of the cannabis to collect the rosin.
  3. Now, fold the paper in half so that the parchment covers the weed. Place the straightener so that it lines up over the weed that’s under the paper. Squeeze down until you hear a slight sizzle. After around 5 seconds, carefully set the paper down and place your straightener to the side.
  4. You’re now ready to collect the rosin. Slowly open the parchment and behold. Next to the squashed weed, you should see some yellow rosin. Using your dabber, collect the rosin and dispense it into a container.
  5. Typically, you’ll then be able to repeat steps 1-4 and squeeze a little more out of the weed. Simply refold, press, and extract two or three more times. Take care not to char the cannabis. Trial and error is your best bet as you perfect your technique.

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