By Doug Mackar
A nectar collector is one of the latest innovations in the world of concentrate smoking. A nectar collector consists of three main components: the tip, the body and the mouthpiece. The tip is made of glass, titanium or quartz, and is the only part of the collector that comes in direct contact with your concentrate. The tip is basically the nail of the nectar collector. The mouthpiece is simply a removable glass extension much like the end of a hand pipe or one hitter. The body of the collector is part pipe, part bubbler, part one hitter. Think of it as the ultimate one hitter for dabs. Add a chamber with a perc or diffuser and you now have the krazy straw of dab pipes.
A straw is a common way to describe a nectar collector, in fact, the first nectar collectors were basically just glass straws, but have developed to incorporate water-cooling percolators and larger chambers. When using a nectar collector, you are essentially sucking up your dab hit like if you were sucking water out of a bowl. Most nectar collectors come with a small glass dish to put your wax or oil in. This is what you’ll smoke out of. Some folks use a piece of glass or a silicone dab mat as an alternative to the quartz dish.
The advantage to the type of experience a nectar collector provides you over say, a dab rig, is that nectar collectors are extremely efficient. You only smoke what the tip comes in contact with, so there is little to no waste of your wax or oil. You can take the exact size hit you want without watching your stash go up in smoke while you’re exhaling. So they save you money, too? Not bad. They are much more portable than a dab rig as well, which is another advantage, being able to use them out hiking or to a festival without drawing too much attention to yourself.
Probably the biggest advantage to most discerning dabbers, though, is that without question a nectar collector is one of the best ways to get the most taste out of your oils and wax. Once you try it, you’ll notice the difference right away. Not to say that these should completely replace your rig. There is definitely a place for both, but for personal smoking, or to get the most out of your high-end concentrates, a nectar collector is definitely worth having in your arsenal. It is compact and efficient and doesn’t mind stepping back and letting your concentrate be the star.
Here’s How it Works
1. Fill it with water
If your collector has a percolator or chamber in it, you’ll want to start by filling the chamber with water. This should be done before you put the other two pieces on (please see below). Most smokers and sellers recommend filling the chamber to about halfway or just below halfway. Try that out and then experiment over time to see what works best for you.
Fill your collector with water before putting it together. Having the mouthpiece off will make it easier to get the water in, but having the titanium/quartz/glass tip off is imperative so that water does not get trapped in the tip. Trapped water can cause cracking in either the body of the pipe or the tip itself when it is heated up.
2. Put it together
The tip and the mouthpiece both go into the body of the collector in the same way. Push it in until you feel the first bit of resistance, then turn it slightly as if you were tightening a lightbulb. This will make the two parts “catch” each other and remain in place. Usually, you won’t turn it even a half a turn. Give it a pull and hold it up to make sure it is securely fitted. If it makes you more comfortable, there is a clip in some kits that attaches the tip to the body. If the nectar collector you have did not come with a clip, you can order those from us. They are referred to as keck clips.
IMPORTANT: Make sure the tip is completely secure before you start to heat it up. You definitely don’t want it falling out while it’s heated to several hundred degrees or more. No matter where it landed, that would not be good.
3. Heat up the tip
Hold the collector horizontally and heat the tip with your favorite dab torch. Holding it horizontal keeps any oil or wax that is already built up in the tip from leaking out. You’ll want to try different levels of heat with different types of concentrates, so experiment a bit and see what works best for you. Excess heat may cause cracking of the glass joint over time, so take it easy. It does not need to be glowing red to work. Remember, you want to vaporize your concentrate, not burn it.
4. Smoke it
Several smokers have suggested beginning to draw air through the collector before you reach the oil in the dish. Touch the tip gently to the oil or wax in the dish and draw in the smoke. Keeping along the edges of the dish at first will be the most efficient way to keep the rest of your concentrate tasting good. If you smoke from the middle to start, you’ll potentially burn the edges of the rest of your oil or wax before you smoke it. Not a huge deal, just a friendly suggestion.
5. Let it cool: Dismantling/Cleaning
Let it cool before you try and take it apart. Carefully twist the tip and mouthpiece in the opposite direction you twisted it when you put it in and it should come right apart. If the tip or mouthpiece gets stuck, don’t force it. Submerge the entire piece in a bowl of hot water and let it sit for a minute. That should do the trick. A quick and easy way to empty the chamber of water is to hold it over the sink and blow through it.
To check out more styles of nectar collectors, see exact dimensions, or purchase one, just click here: NECTAR COLLECTORS