For any dabber, efficiency is the most important aspect to dabbing. Getting the most out of every last drop of concentrates without any waste. Reclaim is a common component of any type of dabbing, but especially when using a banger. Something which can eliminate reclaim by properly heating all of the concentrates allowing all of it for consumption, is ideal. This is what terp pearls do, they maximize every last drop of concentrates for your enjoyment.
You see somebody dabbing when you notice tiny marbles spinning around inside their banger. No, you're not tripping. Terp pearls, dab pearls, or banger beads, are an ingenious and must-have accessory for dabbers, low-temp or high temp. In this guide, we explore what they are and how to use terp pearls, banger beads or whatever you call them, properly.
What are terp pearls?
Terp pearls are tiny round balls, usually made from quartz, that spin around inside a banger as you take a dab. The spinning action evenly distributes the concentrates within the banger, creating an even cloud size. By evenly distributing the concentrates, Terp Pearls prevent cold spots, hot spots, reclaim, and even prevent concentrate from pooling maximizing the heat of the banger. This is done by technically reducing the saturation rate to any one spot, preventing cold spots, which will increase the vaporization rate.
For Low-Temp Dabs, Terp Pearls prevent pooling and cold spots, maximize the potential cloud size based on the banger temperature. This allows for an increased amount of concentrates to be used efficiently (with zero to minimal reclaim remaining) even at a lower temp than would typically be needed without terp pearls.
For High-Temp Dabs, Terp Pearls prevent cold spots, allowing the banger to be evenly heated in all areas as the concentrates turn to vapor. The even distribution also prevents the concentrates from burning in any one particular hotspot. You won't be restricted to smaller doses for better flavor.
The Banger Diameter is a crucial component to the above equation, as larger bangers offer additional surface area, allowing for larger dabs. Larger diameter equals larger efficient dabs, why is that? Read more here.
When larger bangers are combined with terp pearls and proper airflow, the increased surface area, and evenly distributed concentrates can achieve Banger Saturation Rate vs Banger Vaporization Rate equilibrium with much larger amounts of concentrates.
Also known as dab pearls or banger beads, terp pearls come in a variety of materials such as borosilicate, ceramic silica carbide, quartz—and even ruby! They typically range from around 3 mm to 6 mm in diameter.
As you inhale, an air current from your carb cap sets the terp balls in motion, circulating heat throughout your banger—so no oil gets left behind!
How do terp pearls work?
The issue with dabbing at low temps (around 380-420°F) is that there's always some residual oil left behind and wasted, creating a need to clean your banger. This waste can be avoided by using terp pearls.
When dabbing, the moment you stop heating the banger with your torch, the banger begins to cool. Then, the moment the concentrates hits one particular point of the banger, that portion will begin to cool at a faster rate than a portion of the banger which is not being touched by concentrates. With no directional airflow or terp pearls, the initial drop of concentrates that touches the banger’s surface may vaporize at the intended rate and cloud size, however due to the cooling of the banger, the additional concentrates will pool because the surface it is touching is no longer hot enough to vaporize them.
Terp Pearls push around the concentrates, letting them touch all areas of the banger evenly, so the concentrates will vaporize evenly as the banger cool’s evenly, preventing oil puddles and maximizing the possible vaporization potential of the concentrates. This is how proper Milking is done.
Terp balls help to offset the lower vaporization rates of low temp dabbing by offering control over the saturation rate. Plus, they add character to your rig and are fun to watch them spin around.
Since most terpenes have relatively low boiling points, they don't survive well in higher temps. As a result, the flavor is compromised when you dab at temperatures above 420°F. That's why low temps are so good for flavor. Dab balls make it possible for you to take those big tasty rips at lower temps. However, they need to be paired with the right carb cap for them to spin properly.
When taking High-Temp Dabs, Terp Pearls prevent cold spots, allowing the banger to be evenly heated in all areas as the concentrates turn to vapor. The even distribution also prevents the concentrates from burning in any one particular hotspot. You won't be restricted to smaller doses for better flavor.
How to use terp pearls
Dab beads can look intimidating at first, but they're easy to use. The only thing special you will need is a Bucket Banger, and a Carb Cap that allows them to spin. Here are some basic tips for getting the most out of your terp beads.
- Make sure your carb cap is capable of making the terp balls spin. Vortex Carb Caps are best for terp pearls. .
- Drop up to two terp pearls in your banger at a time, sometimes one can be sufficient and easier to spin.
- Leave your dab pearls in your banger while it is heating up.
- Keep the banger and terp balls clean to allow them to spin properly.
Why are my terp pearls not spinning?
If your terp balls are not spinning, it probably means you're using the wrong carb cap. There are many styles of carb caps, a directional airflow carb cap is required for terp pearls. Vortex carb caps are the most popular choice for terp pearl spinning, however long neck 90 degree angle airflow carb caps are my favorite! If your carb cap doesn't have the right airflow configuration—they might not spin. Otherwise, it might be time to clean your dab balls and banger. That can reduce friction, allowing them to spin freely.
How to clean terp pearls
Ideally you'll want to clean your terp pearls after every session. General maintenance can be achieved by running a cotton swab around inside your banger with the pearls still inside of it, and adding a few drops of isopropyl alcohol will help with the cleaning. At some point you will need to give them a more thorough clean if they start to become gunky.
For a deeper clean, you'll need to soak them in alcohol for about a half hour. DO NOT drop hot terp pearls into cold alcohol or you can actually damage them, but you might need tweezers to remove them if they are too hot. Don't use plastic tweezers. Rinse and dry them before using.
Cleaning terp pearls by leaving them inside your banger while heating the banger, will also allow for quicker cleaning, especially in between sessions, but may lead to quicker chazzing of the banger and terp balls.
Tips for cleaning your balls
Run a cotton swab around in your banger with the dab pearls inside after every session.
When cleaning your banger with a super heating torch cycle, pearls left inside the banger will clean just like the banger, although this will speed up chazzing.
If they are too hot, remove your terp pearls with a pair of heat-resistant tweezers.
Don't drop hot banger beads into cold liquid, let them cool down first.
Soak your dab beads in alcohol for up to 30 minutes, rinse and dry.
The more frequent you clean them, the easier the process will be.
Pearls of wisdom
By now you should understand why terp pearls are a must if you’re trying to get the most vapor out of your concentrates. Especially if you enjoy taking big fat rips at temperatures below 420°F. They come in a variety of materials and colors for customizing your setup. If you know any temp dabbers who are not using them yet, tell them why they should consider it, or share this guide with them—you won't be casting your pearls before swine.