Estimated 6-minute read
For the true enthusiast of cannabis, finding new ways to enjoy the best plant of the world is always an exciting proposal, and it never disappoints. Because today, with weed becoming more and more socially acceptable every day, it’s more than joints: you have tinctures, oils, patches, and even shatter as cool alternatives to get the high you are craving. But, what’s that? You never heard of shatter before? Well, then you are in the right place, as teaching how to smoke shatter will be our lesson today. What is shatter and how to enjoy it? And what should you totally avoid?
Learning how to smoke shatter the right way
Well, first things first. What is cannabis shatter? Simply put, it’s a type of concentrate derived from weed, a highly purified form of butane hash oil (BHO) that is often referred to as a "dab." The term "shatter" refers to the glass-like consistency of the product, which shatters when broken or snapped, very similar to rock candy. Now, this might sound familiar to you, and you would be right. We have talked before about cannabis wax, and both of these substances are very similar. After all, cannabis shatter and cannabis wax are both forms of concentrated cannabis, but they differ a lot in appearance, texture, and consistency.
On one hand, cannabis shatter is a transparent, brittle material that is often described as having a glass-like appearance. It has a smooth, hard surface that shatters when broken. The process of making shatter involves the use of solvents, such as butane, to extract the desirable compounds from the cannabis plant, resulting in a highly purified concentrate. As a result, shatter typically has a high THC content and is known for its potency and fast onset of effects. It gives highs good, that’s what we are saying.
Cannabis wax, on the other hand, is a more opaque, waxy substance that has a soft, pliable texture and is often compared to the consistency of, eh, earwax. The process of making wax typically involves the use of solvents too, but the resulting concentrate is then whipped or agitated to create an airy, crumbly consistency, rather than a hard, glass-like surface like shatter. The THC content of wax can vary, but it is generally considered to be less potent than shatter, so keep in mind next time you are thinking of getting either. It depends on how casual or strong your session is going to be. But let’s focus on shatter for now: How to use it?
Okay, but how to obtain shatter?
To make shatter, dried cannabis flowers are soaked in a solvent, typically butane, to extract the desirable compounds such as THC. The mixture is then purged to remove the solvent (you don’t want to smoke any of that), leaving behind a concentrated, viscous substance that is very rich in the psychoactive compounds of the weed plant. In more detail, the process of making shatter typically involves the use of specialized equipment and a carefully controlled environment to ensure your safety during the extraction of the desired compounds from the cannabis plant. The equipment typically includes an extraction tube, a collection dish, and a vacuum oven to remove the solvent. Making shatter generally requires a high level of technical skill and knowledge of chemistry to obtain the desired shatter, and improper techniques can result in a dangerous situation (never mind a lower-quality product). Some of the precautions you should have in mind are:
- Never use an open flame:
The use of an open flame, such as a lighter or match, is extremely dangerous when making shatter. The flame could ignite the solvent and cause a fire or explosion.
- Never use a damaged extraction tube:
A damaged or leaky extraction tube can release solvent into the surrounding area, creating a fire hazard.
- Never use a poorly ventilated area:
Solvents, such as butane, are highly flammable and can easily ignite if they come into contact with a spark or flame. Always make shatter in a well-ventilated area to reduce the risk of fire or explosion.
- Never handle the solvent without protective equipment:
Handling solvents without protective equipment, such as gloves and goggles, can put you at risk of exposure to toxic fumes.
- Never attempt to make shatter if you are inexperienced:
Making shatter requires technical skill and knowledge of the properties of solvents and the desired end product. Improper techniques or handling of solvents can result in a lower-quality product or a hazardous situation.
However, we know what you are thinking. Yes, it’s possible to make cannabis shatter without using flammable solvents like butane. An alternative method involves the use of heat and pressure to extract the desired compounds from the weed, a process often referred to as "rosin" extraction and can produce a similar product to shatter. To make rosin, buds from the cannabis plant are placed between two sheets of heat-resistant material, such as parchment paper, and subjected to heat and pressure; using a hair straightener is perfect for this task. The heat and pressure cause the desired THC and CBD compounds to be squeezed out of the plant material and onto the parchment paper, where they can be collected.
Rosin extraction is considered a safer alternative to traditional solvent-based extraction methods, as it does not involve the use of flammable solvents, which also results in a cleaner, purer concentrate with fewer impurities. However, it's important to remember that rosin extraction can still be challenging and requires technical skill to achieve a high-quality product, so be careful regardless and try it to become familiar with the whole process of making shatter.
Finally, how to smoke shatter
Now, shatter is commonly used for dabbing, which involves heating a small amount of the concentrate on a hot surface, such as a dab rig nail, and inhaling the resulting vapor, the same way you would smoke wax. Just remember that dabbing is considered a potent form of consumption, as it allows for high levels of THC and CBD to be consumed in one hit, so if this is your first time, make sure you are in a safe environment, with people you trust.
If you remember the article we talked about earlier, "dabbing" is a method of consuming cannabis concentrates, such as shatter, wax, or oil, and it involves heating a small amount of concentrate on a hot surface, such as a dab rig or e-nail, and inhaling the resulting vapor, but is not at all the only way to consume it. For example, here are some of the safest ways to consume cannabis shatter:
- Using electric dab rigs:
A dab rig is a specialized device specifically designed for consuming concentrated cannabis products, such as shatter. The shatter is placed on a hot surface, called a nail, and vaporized. The resulting vapor is then inhaled through the mouthpiece of the best electric dab rig you can find.
- Using a vaporizer:
Some vaporizers are designed to be used with concentrates, including shatter. The shatter is placed in a chamber within the vaporizer, where it is heated to a temperature that vaporizes the active compounds, such as THC and CBD. The resulting vapor is then inhaled.
- Using a vape pen:
Some cheap dab pens are designed specifically for use with concentrates, including shatter. The shatter is placed in a chamber within the pen, where it is vaporized and inhaled through the mouthpiece.
Regardless of the method used, it's important to start with a low dose and wait for the effects to fully set in before consuming more. This will help you avoid overconsumption, which can lead to adverse effects, such as anxiety, paranoia, and dizziness. Remember, consuming cannabis in any shape or form should always be fun, so never push it too far, and always have the proper care! Thanks for reading, and happy dabbing!