How to Smoke Shatter 101: The Budtender Guide

Are you ready to take your smoking experience to new heights? Welcome to the world of cannabis concentrates.

I was the resident dabber at the dispensary I worked at for over 5 years, and turning shatter into liquified goodness via a rig is something I still do regularly. 

In comparison to smoking weed, “dabbing” or smoking shatter is night and day. And we’re just talking in terms of potency. 

Read on to discover helpful tips and tricks on how to smoke shatter effectively.

D8 Shatter Pro

What Is Shatter and How Is It Smoked? 

To put it simply, shatter is a type of cannabis extract that’s highly concentrated. 

Concentrates contain a very high THC content, sometimes upwards of 80%. In comparison, cannabis extracts are much stronger than smoking flower.

Shatter also boasts a high terpene content. So the cannabis concentrate retains its hallmark earthy flavors.

With a translucent glass-like appearance, shatter is usually gold or amber in color but can vary. It’s produced via a manufacturing process using solvents such as butane or CO2. 

During this process, the solvent isolates the plant’s cannabinoids and trichomes. Cannabinoids are cannabis compounds such as THC, CBD, and CBN etc. Trichomes are small hair-like crystals that cover the cannabis buds.

Dip Devices EVRI Triple Use Dabber
  • Use with pods, 510 carts & dabs
  • Unique triple use design
  • Magnetic battery catch

The final result, shatter, is oftentimes called butane hash oil. There are other cannabis concentrates too, such as wax, budder, sugar, and crumble. 

The different names just indicate the extract’s unique consistency and texture. For example, shatter can be broken up or cracked, hence its name. 

To be smoked, extracts must be heated. Shatter is typically dabbed. 

Dabbing involves the use of consuming shatter via vapors from a heated dab rig. 

Here are the typical ways for how to smoke shatter:

  • Dabbing: using an oil rig with dab nails that are heated by a butane torch
  • Using a vape pen to load small pieces of shatter
  • Using an e rig with electronic nails or e nails
  • Adding it to a joint or smearing it onto rolling papers
cannabis shatter

Best Way To Smoke Shatter: Dabbing

Aside from dabbing, you can also smoke shatter in various ways.

However, the most efficient way is to dab shatter. Amongst concentrate enthusiasts, dabbing is the method of choice.

Dabbing is the optimal way to smoke cannabis concentrates like Delta 8 Wax or THC-O dabs for a few reasons:

  • You can control the size of your hits, making your shatter stretch longer
  • Dabs are better at delivering higher THC concentrations than smoking via a joint or glass pipe
  • Dabbing has been shown to deliver about 75% of THC to the user, while 75% of THC is lost when smoking weed
  • It’s more cost-effective, a dab rig setup is cheap, and since shatter is heavily concentrated, you’ll need less of it to feel high in comparison to bud. So a little goes a long way!
  • Dabbing can provide relief or a stronger high faster than smoking cannabis flower.
  • Vaporizing oil may be better on your lungs than burning flower

As a seasoned dabber, I can attest that dabbing is the hands-down most efficient way to consume cannabis concentrates.

When I add shatter to rolling paper or in blunts, I end up using a lot more than when using a dab rig. And I feel considerably less high.

Though smoking shatter with bud is more convenient, it’s not as effective. 

Dabbing allows for controlled temperatures, which I find preserves your concentrates. It’s the biggest bang for your buck!

Rolling up shatter or adding it to bowls makes it burn at high temperatures, which you cannot control. This results in an inferior experience. Note – this also applies to other cannabis concentrates too.

Loading small hits in a dab pen or vape device is a bit more efficient than smoking wax, but I still find it wasteful. You’ll notice a lot of unvaporized extract. Plus, temperature control is often an issue.

With 10 years of experience dabbing, I will debate anyone who disagrees that using a dab rig is the way to go.

Puffco Peak Pro Electronic Dab Rig
  • Portable
  • Decent battery life
  • Easy to use

How to Smoke Shatter In a Dab Rig

Wait, What is a Dab Rig Exactly?

Before we jump into how to smoke shatter with a rig, let’s first define a dab rig.

An oil rig, i.e. dab rig or water pipe, is basically a glass bong with a nail. 

Nails are made of titanium, ceramic or quartz (my personal favorite) in place of a bowl piece. They come in various sizes that correspond to the rig’s female or male joint.

The nail will need to be heated with a torch to vaporize dabs. Dab nails must be made of certain materials that tolerate temperatures up to 400-600 degrees Fahrenheit.

The rig also has a water chamber which reduces the heat of the vaporized shatter.

There are also eRigs (an electronic water pipe) that require an eNail. Erigs do not require a blow torch. Instead, a coil is heated electronically, which will vaporize the hash oil.

When using a regular oil rig, you’ll need a few accessories to dab shatter:

  • Dabbing tool i.e. dab wand
  • Butane torch
  • Carp cap
thc shatter

Dabbing Tool

Cannabis concentrates are notoriously sticky and viscous. Touching extracts with your fingers is a mess. Trust me. You’ll be trying to get the wax off for what feels like hours.

So you’ll need a dab tool to scoop dabs off wax paper or out of the container and onto the nail. Dab tools ensure optimum precision and application when smoking shatter.

Sometimes called a dab wand or dabber, the tool can take many forms, such as a stick, scoop, blade, or paddle.

They’re made of various materials, including ceramic, glass, or metal.

Butane Torch

A butane blowtorch is a must. You’ll use the torch to heat up the nail to a controlled temperature quickly.

Blow torches run out of juice fast, so you should have a couple of butane cans on hand for refills.

Carb Cap

This tool is essentially a lid for the hot nail (e.g. banger). After heating up the nail and taking a hit, you’ll place the cap over the banger.

Using a carb cap will create a smoother hit since it optimizes airflow and heating of the extract.

Though optional, a carb cap will improve your overall dab experience. For a two-in-one tool, look for a dabber that has a carb cab attachment.

Dab Shatter At Low Temperatures

This is more of a pro tip than a necessary accessory. You should heat the dab nail at lower temperatures for the smoothest hit possible.

I suggest heating dabs at 400-500 degrees Fahrenheit. Most cannabinoids and terpenes are effectively vaporized at these temps.

So staying in this low-temperature range is better to maximize flavor, smoothness, and longevity. 

Heating dab rigs and your dab nail within 400-500 degrees will conserve hash oil and end up being more economical in the long run compared to high temperatures. 

In contrast, heating dabs to a higher temperature can produce a more potent high. This is due to a faster conversion process of THC and other cannabinoids. However, you run the risk of wasting oil and burning your lungs.

dab rig torch

How To Smoke Shatter Without A Rig

There are many other ways to smoke shatter than using an oil rig or hot nail.

While the other methods may not be as efficient, they’ll undoubtedly get the job done. And they’ll provide you with a superior high to smoking flower.

Here are some other easy ways you can smoke shatter:

  • Dab pen: load tiny hits of shatter
  • Roll it up in a joint: spread some shatter on your rolling paper using your dab tool
  • Top off your pipe or bowl: break off a piece of shatter and place it atop your loaded bowl piece. Toke as normal.
  • Cook up some edibles: make sure to bake shatter on parchment paper for 20 minutes before adding it to your favorite recipe.
  • Hot knives: heat a butter knife and use a dabber to place some shatter onto the hot surface. Inhale.

Related Read: Smoking Wax Without A Rig

How To Smoke Shatter With a Vape

Good news! Shatter can be vaped with vape pens.

First, grab your vape pen. Snap off a piece of shatter with your dabbing tool and place it on the coil.

Close the vertical chamber of your vape. Set the temperature higher than you would for vaping flower. Just be careful not to set it so high that you burn the shatter.

Now press the button. And inhale to your heart’s content.

Smoking shatter with a vape pen is a convenient way to get high on the go!

How To Smoke Shatter In a Bong

By design, bongs are similar to dab rigs. This makes smoking shatter out of a bond totally doable! And you have a few options.

First, gather the necessary supplies:

  • bong (filled with water)
  • bowl piece or nail for dabbing
  • metal smoke screen for bowl piece (optional)
  • lighter (if using a bowl) or blowtorch (if using a nail)

You can sprinkle shatter on your loaded bowl just as you would add hash.

You can also place a metal screen in your bowl piece and only smoke shatter.

Or you can buy a female or male jointed nail that fits the joint.

For the latter two methods, you’ll need to load a hit of shatter on your dabber. Heat with a lighter (for a bowl piece) or torch (for a nail for dabbing), and voila.

How To Smoke Shatter With a Cigarette

This method is perhaps the most simple. Using your dab wand, add shatter to the tip of your cigarette.

For less pliable shatter, you can apply it directly to the end of the lit cigarette. The ember should melt the shatter enough to spread on the cigarette.

Alternatively, you can use a blowtorch to lightly heat your dabber and use it to pick up a little shatter from its container. 

Do so carefully! The warm dabber should melt the extract just enough to be spreadable.

How to Smoke Shatter With Hot Knives

An old-school method of smoking shatter is hot knifing.

This manner is rudimentary and less efficient. But if you lack other tools, this will work in a pinch.

Hot knives only require a butter knife and heat source (i.e. the stove). Simply grab a butter knife and heat it over the stove for about 30 seconds or until very hot.

Then grab your dabber and apply shatter to the heated end of the knife. The shatter should vaporize instantly. Inhale the rising vapor immediately.

This method results in a lot of waste. A considerable amount of vapor is not inhaled as it evaporates quickly.

However, if you’re all out of options, hot knifing can get you out of the jam and into the concentrate clouds.

How to Smoke Dabs in a Joint

You can make your own Twax joints to smoke smatter. A Twax joint is simply a joint that has been infused with a cannabis extract.

To roll an infused joint, grab your favorite rolling paper. Hold it as you would when loading flower.

Now warm the tip of a dab wand with a lighter to make the shatter more spreadable.

Dollop the extract on the dabber. Then evenly “paint” the inside of the rolling paper with shatter.

Note, that applying too much shatter can make the joint paper too wet to light. This can result in uneven burning or lighting issues. So add sparingly when spreading shatter!

Sprinkle the flower onto the paper and roll. Finally, light your joint and enjoy a major buzz!

smoking dabs

Can You Smoke Shatter In A Blunt?

Yes! You can smoke shatter in a blunt like you would with rolling papers.

For this method you’ll need:

  • Blunt wrap
  • Cannabis flower
  • Grinder (optional)
  • Dabbing tool
  • Cigarette lighter or matches

Here are two easy ways to add shatter to a blunt:

  1. Warm the shatter until spreadable. This can be done by holding the container between your palms and using your body heat to soften the extract. Using a dab wand, smear shatter inside the blunt paper.

Pro tip: if you already rolled up your blunt and forgot the extract, spread the shatter on the outside of the blunt. The oil will still burn. Just be careful not to touch it. 

For harder shatter, you can roll up a piece of shatter like a snake. Then coil your snake around the blunt.

  1. Break up the shatter into a manageable-sized piece or pieces. Hint: place the container of shatter in your freezer to easily crack into pieces. Mix the shatter with your bud. Roll as normal.

Adding shatter to a blunt is easy but somewhat wasteful. You use less extract when you dose dabs via a rig.

It’s also nearly impossible to control the temperature of the blunt. So you might end up squandering precious dabs.

Can You Smoke Shatter In A Pipe?

Yup! This method is similar to using a bong to smoke shatter.

Load up your bowl piece with weed and top it off with a little shatter. Then heat your flower and smoke your pipe as usual.

To make this method a bit more efficient and less messy, use a metal pipe screen.

Wrapping Up: Smoking Dabs

The process of smoking shatter may seem daunting at first. But it shouldn’t be!

Once you’ve dabbed a few times, the steps will become second nature. It can also be done with or without dab rigs. Just find what works best for you!

When it comes to potency and effectiveness, the learning process is worth it.

Both novice dabbers and dab enthusiasts can enjoy smoking shatter. At such a small dose, the super potent high is unrivaled.

A rule of thumb always start slowly when smoking shatter. Happy dabbing!