Dabbing, like vaping, is a practice that has hit the market of late. Most people confuse dabbing with vaping to be one thing. The greatest difference between the two is the tools used; vaporizers for vaping and dabbing pens or rigs for dabbing.

Although both dab pens and rigs are used for the same purpose, the two are completely different. In this article, we focus on the similarities and differences between dab pens and dab rigs. Let's get started;

What is a Dab Rig

This is a glass setup that allows you to smoke wax concentrates. It has three mains chambers; a mouthpiece, a chamber for water, and a "nail" or "bowl" where you place the wax concentrate to be heated. More advanced dab rigs contain more features like percolators similar to those found in bongs.

The wax concentrate in the bowl is heated by a blowtorch. In case you are using a nail,  a source is required to superheat the nail which in turn heats the wax to vaporize. This also happens to be the technical difference between dab rigs and average bongs.

What is a Dab Pen

They are sometimes called small vaporizers. It works like a dab rig, wax vaporizers concentrate, but in a different manner. Just like a dab rig, it has three main components; a heating chamber, mouthpiece, and battery. The battery is electrically charged and used to heat coils found in the heating chamber.

The coils interact with the wax concentrate to vaporize as dab nails do. Dab pens are available in a variety of sizes and shapes. They also come with a variety of features to meet your needs.

Differences Between Dab pens and Dab Rigs

Dab pens differ from dab rigs in several ways. For better understanding, we will divide the differences into sub-categories. There are two main differences; physical appearance and functional wise. Here are the main differences.


Dab pens are by far more portable than dab rigs. Even the smallest dab rig is not as portable as a dab pen. Dab rigs require larger and more equipment to operate. Additionally, a dab rig needs to be filled with water to prevent spillages. This makes it heavy and a little difficult to move around with.

Ease of Use

As already mentioned, dab rigs require larger and more equipment to operate. This makes dab rigs more difficult to use when compared to dab pens. Note that a dab rig is not a complicated machine but only relatively difficult when compared to a dab pen. A dab pen is already set and all you have to do is take puffs. In addition, some dab pens are disposable making them extremely easy to use and very efficient.


A dab pen is very small in size as compared to dab rigs. This makes the pens very discrete in terms of functionality. Similarly, dab pens are quiet enough that nobody can realize what you are doing. On the other hand, dab rigs make noise just like bongs do. In case you want either a dab pen, get one from Dr. Dabber to get real experience.

Puff Size

This is where dab rigs win. Even the biggest dab pen is not able to give a puff comparable to that of a small dab rig. Remember that dab rigs are bigger in size than dab pens, so the puffs are bigger enough. For example, if you are used to taking five puffs using a dab pen, you are likely to take only two puffs when using a dab rig.

Dab Nails Vs Wax Coils

Dabbing nails are made from different materials; ceramic, quartz, titanium, glass, and so on. Any of this material ensures that the nails do not melt during the process. Wax atomizers in dab pens are also made from either ceramic or quartz because of the same reason.

There is however a notable difference in heating and cooling times among the materials. For instance, ceramic takes a longer time to heat than quartz and titanium. The best thing about ceramic is that it takes longer to heat and also takes longer to cool down.

Similarities Between Dab Pens and Dab Rigs

Dab pens and dab rigs are similar in many ways. The main similarity is in the wax concentrate which is vaporized by both. Dab pens and rigs come in all sizes and shapes with varying prices. You, therefore, have a variety to choose from.

Both dab pens and dab rigs are reusable. Unlike joints that are one-time, dab rigs and pens are used for a relatively long time before getting new ones. Even with disposable vape pens, you get a good number of puffs before disposing of them. This depends on the size of the pen and the quantity of CBD juice present. In the long run, this is cost-effective. 

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