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Bongs vs. Dab rigs

by Tokeplanet Staff 15 Sep 2022
Bongs vs. Dab rigs

You may be familiar with bongs and dab rigs; perhaps you've even seen images of them. They look the same, save for a few tiny variations, right? Therefore, it is reasonable to assume they might be the same item. Bongs and dab rigs have a similar appearance and design. They are essentially the same thing—tools for water filtration—but with minor modifications that enable them to handle various chemicals. They are essentially the same, but each has a different function and isn't always interchangeable. Everything you need to know about the distinctions between bongs and dab rigs is provided below.

How do you smoke?

The main distinction between dab rigs and bongs is what you'll consume from them. Cannabis can be consumed with bongs and dab rigs, but they function differently. Dab rigs are made to be used with concentrates like BHO, waxes, or cannabis oils, while bongs are meant to be used with tobacco, dried herbs, or marijuana flowers. Cannabis is burned and consumed using bongs. A lighter is used to burn the plant material, and the smoke is subsequently inhaled. On the other hand, Dab rigs use heat to evaporate the concentrate before inhalation. Typically, a torch is used for this, but a nail may be obtained for more precise temperature control.

Form Of Consumption

A bong is generally made of glass, a tube that connects to a water chamber, a straight tube through which the smoke passes, and a mouthpiece through which the smoke is inhaled. The procedure for using a bong is relatively straightforward: you put dried flowers in the container (a small metal or glass plate), burn them with a lighter, and continuously inhale via the mouthpiece. 

A dab rig functions in the same way. In fact, you may consider it to be an extension of a bong designed especially for concentrates. The key distinction is that the little platform known as a "nail" or "banger," where the concentrate is inserted instead of the dried flowers in the bongs, has replaced the container where the weed was previously placed in the device.

Size Counts

With a few exceptions, bongs are typically larger than dab rigs. The bong can be larger, and the smoke will traverse the entire length of the bong without diminishing since the flower is being burned rather than evaporated. A dab/oil setup requires less distance for the vapor to travel while maintaining potency and flavor.


Usually, a dab rig setup will cost more than a bong setup. The reason is that you'll also need a nail, and various dabbing supplies, like a torch, dabber, silicone container, etc., in addition to buying a rig. Which, depending on what you get, might be pretty expensive. Each device might have a wide range in pricing. An acrylic bong may be purchased for a very affordable price, which makes them quite accessible for people on a tight budget. 

They can, however, increase into the hundreds or even thousands as you improve the design and substance. When it comes to price, bongs have the most options. Although dab rigs initially cost a bit more than bongs, you should still be able to locate one for a decent price. They can therefore become costly, much like bongs.


The more filtration, the better, right? Well, maybe not always. Excessive filtering in the case of dab rigs can lower the effectiveness of the dab. The potency of the smoke can be lowered when the vapor from the concentrate comes into contact with too much water. This is why premium dab rigs typically include just one percolator. A percolator is a glass chamber that condenses smoke into smaller particles by forcing smoke through minuscule holes. This enables the water to hold the smoke in smaller bubbles, increasing the surface area and allowing it to cool more before entering the lungs. 

Numerous chambers containing water and smaller holes are typically found around the main tube of bongs. These provide a more sensitive feeling because it takes longer for the smoke to get to the lips. The smoke will be filtered many times, further reducing heat if the percolator additionally contains multiple water chambers. Since percolation is beneficial, bongs should have as much as possible.

Final Thoughts

Remember that the purpose of this information is to help you receive the maximum enjoyment possible from your smoking. However, a lot of it is a matter of taste. Some people prefer to dab out of large dab rigs, while others prefer to inhale marijuana from tiny bongs. In the end, you ought to go with your preferences. 

What then distinguishes a dab rig from a bong? The quick response is nothing. Any dab rig may be a bong, and any bong can be a dab rig. The lengthy response is that there are numerous differences. Overall, they are both water pipes that filter your smoke or vapor using percolation.

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