Nail vs Bucket: Which One Should I Use?

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When joining the dabbing community, there are many new words to learn. "Nail" is one of the first terms that new dabbers will encounter. It can be confusing when trying to understand the difference between a nail and a bucket. In this article, we will explore how these dab rig accessories; nails and buckets work in dabbing and which of them is more efficient at vaporizing concentrates.

But first, let's talk about concentrate vaporization.

Concentrates Vaporize at Different Temperatures

When trying to understand the difference between nails and buckets, it is very important to understand the concept of vaporization. Vaporization is when a compound changes from solid/liquid to gas (or gas-like substance) in an effort to decrease the molecular density. Vaporization occurs at different temperatures depending on compound properties and often results in a purer substance.

So, let's now compare nails and buckets.


In this context, dab rig nails are generally made from titanium, ceramic or quartz and attach to the surface of a rig. Nails heat up as your torch heats them and as they come in contact with the dabbing tool.

Nails hit a certain temperature and stay resolutely at that temperature until they cool down, which is why it's important to wait a few seconds before applying your concentrate. 


  1. Less fragile
    One of the main benefits of using a nail is that they are less fragile.This is because nails are smaller and don't require a dome to cover them.
  2. More affordable
    Nails are a lot more affordable. This is because they are made from cheaper materials and don't require a complicated design.
  3. Easy to maintain
    Nails are very easy to maintain. All you need to do is lightly wipe your nail with a tissue after dabs.
  4. Concentrates last longer
    Normally, traditional nails are small, therefore, you can not apply excess concentrates.


  1. Harsher inhales
    Nails require a high-intensity flame, which often causes the user to inhale harsher hits. This may cause some irritation to the throat.
  2. Can only hold small amounts of concentrate
    Nails can only hold small amounts of concentrate, which limits their efficiency. You can not use them for long sessions.
  3. Not friendly for new users
    Nails require a lot of experience to use properly. It can take a long time before you get used to using them.
  4. Difficult to take apart
    It can be very difficult to take your nail apart should your rig fall over. This is because nails are small and compact.


Dab rig buckets are generally made from silicone or glass and attach to the surface of a rig. Buckets sit on top of a nail and allow you to add concentrates onto the surface.

Buckets have a valve on top, which allows you to clear the chamber once your concentrate has fully vaporized. This valve also serves as a carb, which allows you to clear your concentrate after pulling your hit.


  1. Easy to clean
    Buckets are very easy to clean. If you don't have water nearby, you can simply wipe off your concentrate.
  2. You can hold longer dabbing sessions
    Buckets allow you to hold longer dabbing sessions. This is because they are large and have a big surface area.
  3. Less harsh inhale
    Buckets have a large surface area, which means that you don't heat up concentrates as much. This can cause you to inhale smoke that is much less harsh than when using a nail.
  4. Better airflow
    Buckets have more airflow than nails, which means you can clear your concentrate with less effort.


  1. Expensive
    Buckets are more expensive than nails. This is because they are made from better materials and have a lot of intricate details.
  2. Can break easily
    Buckets can break easily as compared to nails. They are made from more fragile materials and have a lot of intricate details, which make them more difficult to use.
  3. Require a lot of maintenance
    Buckets require a lot of maintenance. You must ensure that your bucket does not crack or become contaminated by washing it with hot water after each use.
  4. You will run out of concentrate faster
    One of the main disadvantages of using a bucket is that you run out of concentrate faster. This is because you only have the surface area of the bucket to work with.

Final Thoughts: Choosing the Best One

Nails and Buckets both offer unique benefits and drawbacks, so it's difficult to decide which one is better. Today, buckets are quite popular because of the various pros that come with them. However, the right choice for you depends on your preferences and budget.