One of the most important things to consider after purchasing a vaporizer is accessories, many of which can greatly enhance your vaporization experience. Since I first purchased a VaporGenie over three years ago, I have collected several types of vaporizers and have experimented with various accessories available on the market today and have gathered a list of what I consider to be fairly essential.
As a general rule I’ve tended to stay away from third party mouthpieces (especially for the Arizer Solo) as many manufacturers (Arizer included) claim that these mouthpieces tend to be inferior to the first party option.
If you have a whip vaporizer such as the Extreme Q, I strongly suggest picking up a converter in order to allow you to attach your bong to a vaporizer (full guide here). Not only does a bong cool the air and produce smoother vapor, its also a ton of fun to use when friends are over. Make sure that you select an adapter that is the right size for your bong.
Vaporizers work best with finely ground herb, and herb grinders are one of the best ways to obtain the perfect cannabis consistency. I recommend a durable Grinder such as the Spacecase 4-piece. Made out of anodized aluminum, the Spacecase grinds herb finely and has a handy pollen collector. Also keep in mind that grinders come in various sizes, so be sure to get one that is able to handle how much herb you like to grind at once
If you have a whip vape that shipped with PVC tubing, I highly recommend upgrading to silicon tubing as it has numerous advantages over PVC (see here for my article on the subject) and is quite cheap to purchase. Aside from being much more flexible than PVC, silicon tubing is also a lot easier to clean, and you can even collect hash from a silicone whip using an isowash.
Although I feel that that accessory is more optional than the other three, a carrying case can provide a good amount of insurance and peace of mind for a vape owner who transports their vaporizer frequently. I have an Extreme Q Kush Case and its soft interior protects my vaporizer while at the same time making it easy to discreetly transport from my house to friends. Using a case gives me piece of mind knowing that if I’m transporting a high end vape (such as the Volcano) I don’t have to worry about glass breaking and the like.
Another item I consider to be relatively optional is a stash case such as the CVault. For at home use I find a mason jar to be quite good at storing my bud, but they have the downside of being fragile. With its sturdy (and airtight) design, the CVault is ideal for travelling and not worrying about your stash jar shattering. The CVault also maintains a stable humidity level (much like a cigar humidor) and will ensure that your bud always stays fresh.
High Quality Herb
Like smoking, vaporizers produce the best results when combined with high quality herb. Using lower grade cannabis can result in reduced potency, less vapor, and other unpleasant side effects. Whenever you can, try to splurge on a high quality strain and you’ll thank yourself in the process!
In my experience, these items have greatly improved my vaporization experience, and these days I pretty much vaporize exclusively, regarding it as a better alternative to smoking cannabis. Also don’t forget to check out the guides section of the blog as it contains many handy tips on how to get the most out of your vaporizer!
I recently came across this cool easter egg for enabling a “party mode” on a Pax Ploom portable vaporizer. When you shake your Pax in a circular motion, the LED will begin to flash a rainbow of colors. To disable party mode, simply turn off the vaporizer. The following video demonstrates what party mode looks like when enabled:
Personally I think this is a pretty neat touch on an already cool vaporizer!
Oftentimes the small size of bags that come with most bag vaporizers leave people desiring more, especially when they plan to vaporize with fairly large groups of people. Fortunately, there exists something simple you can do in order to increase the capacity of your bag vaporizer, use a turkey bag! In my experience, using a turkey bag greatly increases the amount of vapor collected, and can boost the number of people sharing a bag from 3-4 to 5+!
Turkey bags (such as this one) are fairly large plastic bags (designed to baste turkey in) which are made of the same material as regular vaporizer bags, and are the ideal size for a fairly large bag. Using a bigger bag will allow you to get the most out of your bag vaporizer since you can gather more vapor per bowl than you normally would. In my experience, the best thing to do is to start your vaporizer on a relatively low temperature (around 180C), and gradually increase it to about 225C as the bag fills up. With a little practice you will soon get the hang of filling these larger bags, and eventually you will learn how often you should increase vaporizer temperature to achieve maximum efficiency. Since oven bags are designed to handle the high temperatures encountered within an oven,
Attaching the bag to a bag vape is relatively easy. For the Extreme Q, simply remove the old bag and its fastenings and replace it with the new bag and voila! With the Volcano Vaporizer, you’ll need to have a solid valve in order to attach a turkey bag, as the Easy Valve comes with a preattached bag.
Not only do turkey bags allow you to increase the volume of vapor you get per bag, but they are also relatively inexpensive and can be easily replaced once they become worn out. If you have any experience in using turkey bags with your vaporizer, let us know in the comments!
I bought my first vaporizer (a vaporgenie) in the winter of 2009. Since then vaporization has become my preferred way to consume cannabis (along with the occasional bong rip from time to time). Not only do most vaporizers give you precise temperature control (different temperatures produce different effects), vaporizers are also highly efficient (sometimes portable as well!) and emit no tar, ash, or smoke. With years of experience spanning a large number of vaporizer models, I’ve been able to learn the ins and outs of the process, and this post contains what I feel to be some of my handiest tips for those using a vaporizer. I’ve also included links to several of my more in-depth guides in case one of these tips interests you.
Make Your Vapor Smoother
Although vaporization is much less harsh in comparison to smoking cannabis, the hot air produced in the process can oftentimes be irritating on your throat (especially for those with disorders such as asthma). Fortunately, there are a few quick and easy ways to help significantly reduce the harshness of your vapor.
- Use a bag attachment.
- If your vaporizer supports it, using a bag attachment is one of the best ways to cool down your vapor. After you fill up a bag with vapor, seal it and let it sit for a few minutes (5-10) before inhaling the vapors, and your experience should be noticeable smooth in comparison to using a whip vape. There’s no need to worry about a decrease in potency waiting this amount of time, as the vapor can remain in the bag for a few hours before it begins to dissipate.
- Many people (myself included) prefer the experience of using a whip to that of a bag even though whips tend to be much harsher. However, these two tips allowed me to significantly cool down my whip experience.
- Get a bong and relatively inexpensive vaporizer attachment as I outlined in this earlier post. Not only will the water in the bong work to cool the vapor, you can also use slightly steamy water (my favorite) in order to produce a soothing effect on your throat that counteracts the dryness of vapor. You also have the added benefit of being able to enjoy the sensation of using a bong while at the same time avoiding tar, ash, and smell!
- Purchase a longer whip. Using a longer whip will increase the time it takes for your vapor to reach your mouth after passing over the heating element, resulting in a cooler vapor. In my experience, standard whips of about 2 – 2 1/2 feet produce the harshest vapor, while 3 1/2 – 5ft is the ideal amount of smoothness without longer lengths making it harder to inhale your vapor. I suggest ordering more whip than you need and then gradually cutting it down in size to determine your preferred length.
- While you vaporize, use menthol cough drops such as Halls. Since dry vapor can be irritating to your throat, the menthol in Halls will produce a cooling sensation allowing you to take bigger hits without experiencing any coughing. This method works especially well when you are vaporizing very dry bud.
Maximize The Efficiency Of Your Vaporizer
One of my favorite things about herbal vaporizers is how efficient they are. The majority of vaporizers can stretch out a little bit of cannabis and make it last a long time. If you’d like to maximize your vaporizer’s efficiency then these tips should be of some use:
- Experiment with your vaporizer’s “sweet spot”
- Since every vaporizer has a different style of heating element (and herbs often come dry, fresh, etc), it is best that you experiment with temperature to get a feel for what temperatures you should be using with your cannabis. For example, my Extreme Q works best in the range of 180-230C, wheras my Aromed 4.0 gets better results from 210-225C for most cannabis. I recommend starting out low and then working your way up in 10C increments to find out which temperatures produces the best vapor for your needs.
- Save your AVB (already vaped bud)!
- Keeping a jar handy to dump your AVB into can be a great way to save material to make a wide range of potent cannabis products (especially if you’re someone who doesn’t vape your material to very dark brown). I’ve written guides on how to make cannaoil as well as AVB capsules, and both methods are an easy way to increase the longevity of your bud. In addition, you can also re-vape AVB (with diminishing effects) by increasing the temperature of your vape slowly into the higher temperature ranges (225-245C on an Extreme Q). Since the higher temperatures encourage more CBD release, the effect is less of a cerebral one and instead is more couch lock and stony.
- Don’t forget you can vaporize herbs besides cannabis, each of which produces different effects and aromas.
- Finally, make sure to clean your vaporizer every so often and collect the resin stuck to the pieces. This resin is very potent, and a little bit of it can go a long way. One of the best things to do is soak all the glass pieces in high proof alcohol, let the alcohol dissolve completely and put some of the remaining oil on top of a fresh bowl of bud for best results.
Since vaporizers tend to emit dry, hot air, and cannabis naturally causes your mouth to dry out, cottonmouth can be an annoying problem to have to deal with. In my experience, the best way to kill cottonmouth in its tracks is to chew fruit flavored gum (especially while you’re vaporizing). Gum stimulates the production of salvia, and thus eliminates many of the unpleasant feelings of cottonmouth. Chewing gum also has the added benefit of staving off the munchies, which can be an added benefit if you’re watching your weight. My favorite types of gum for this purpose include the Trident Layers line which has very fruity flavors flavors including Wild Strawberry & Tangy Citrus as well as Green Apple & Golden Pineapple. Even the names of these gums alone make me salivate!
If you have any other useful tips, feel free to share them in the comments section! Also don’t forget to take a look at the guides section of the blog as it contains many other helpful tidbits.
Although many people enjoy making edibles such as Cannaoil from their already vaped bud (AVB), there is another route you can take in re-using your AVB; make AVB capsules! By putting your AVB into capsules, you can easily carry them with you and take them when you want discreetly. Ingesting AVB capsules produces a very “stony” high that can last for hours, so make sure to be in a comfortable setting when trying them for the first time. In addition, capping your AVB makes it much easier to ingest than trying to swallow straight AVB!
What you’ll need for this project are the following items:
- 00 Sized capsules (8-20 per batch)
- Capping machine (available at most pharmacies)
- Some AVB which isn’t too dark brown
- A coffee grinder
Firstly, take a desired amount of AVB and grind it up finely in your coffee grinder. The finer the grind the better, since it will produce a greater surface area and produce a stronger effect. Once you’ve grinded the AVB to a sufficient level, use your capper and fill anywhere between 8-20 capsules depending on the strength of your AVB. As a rule of thumb, the darker your AVB is, the more capsules you want to make. I find the capsules are most effective when the AVB is only slightly browned.
Once you’ve successfully capped your desired amount of AVB, take the pills and ingest them one or two at a time while washing them down with some milk. The milk will add some fat in your stomach, which will help to increase the potency of the AVB. Expect to begin feeling the effects after an hour or two, and you should expect a stony, couchlock style high similar to edibles. Be sure to experiment with how many capsules work for you, as the potency of AVB varies greatly. With my AVB, it took about 12 pills to give me a fairly strong effect that left me feeling relaxed.
Have you had success with this method of ingesting AVB? If so, let us know in the comments!
Oftentimes people who are looking to purchase a Volcano Vaporizer are curious in finding out what the difference between the solid valve and EasyValve is, so I decided to write a short post highlighting the key differences they have.
The first way in which the Volcano valves differ is that the Solid Valve is designed to be kept for the life of your Volcano, whereas the EasyValve is made to be replaced after a certain amount of uses (for me its generally around 50 bags, sometimes more depending on the quality of cannabis used. The advantage of the EasyValve is that you don’t need to clean it like you do with the solid valve. Instead you just simply replace it when your old one becomes to clogged up with resin. In contrast, the solid valve requires that you take it apart and clean it from time to time in order to get maximum efficiency during use. A secondary advantage of using a solid valve is that you can use it with any size bag that you want as opposed to the standard Volcano bags.
Secondly, the EasyValve can easily be clipped into a replacement Volcano bag, wheras the solid valve is a little trickier to attach to your bags, but it isn’t too bad once you get the hang of it.
Overall, what it really comes down to is user preference. The EasyValve (as the name implies) is very simple to operate and makes replacing bags a breeze. However this ease of use comes with the tradeoff of not being as long lasting as the solid valve (which can get hundreds of uses with proper maintenance). If you’re looking for something that “just works” for your vsaporization experience, then I suggest purchasing an EasyValve. However, if you’re more of a DIY type, then you shouldn’t have any issues operating a regular solid valve.
One of the things I love about marijuana vaporizers is that the field is constantly evolving, and it is quite simple to build a vape yourself. If you’re someone who enjoys hobbyist projects, then a wide number of options exist for you to build your own herbal vaporizer, and this MFLB clone seems like a great started project. I came accross this MFLB clone on Reddit, and it looks simple enough to make providing you have a basic understanding of electrical circuits (and maybe some skill in woodworking!). This build uses two lithium rather than one (like the original MFLB). The use of two batteries increase the wattage which extends the life of your batteries.
In order to make your own MFLB, you’ll need the following materials:
- Solid block of wood for the base, preferrably with the dimensions 2.5″x1.25″x0.9″ which is the size of a real MFLB)
- Copper wire to connect the batteries and the trench
- Steel mesh for the trench
- A glass or plastic tube for the mouthpiece (I recommend glass since its easier to clean)
- A battery case
- Plexiglass for the top cover
- A screw to secure the covero
- Food grade lacquer for the finish (this is optional but can help enhance the appearance of your Vape, especially if you’re using a nice wood such as oak or mahogany)
- Two rechargable lithium ion batteries
You’ll also need a pair of wire cutters as well as a drill with a wide bit (1″-2″) to carve the out the mouthpiece entrance and the bowl. Creating your own MFLB gives the ability to select a trench size that best suits your needs.
Here’s the schematic which outlines how the vaporizer should be assembled:
If you’ve tried this project, feel free to share your results in the comments section here on VaporBlog! I’m curious to see what people come up with. Also, I do not advise selling any homemade MFLBs that you may make, as you’ll most likely run into problems with Magic-Flight.
When people purchase a vaporizer for marijuana, one thing that they don’t often realize is that your vaporizer can also be used to vaporize several other types of herbs, which can produce a wide range of effects. I decided to write this post to outline some of the other types of herbs which you can effectively vaporize based on some of my experiences. I do however recommend that you use a vaporizer with a temperature gauge when vaporizing herbs other than marijuana since they often have a certain effective temperature range that must be met in order to obtain maximum benefits. If you don’t currently own a vaporizer, I recommend purchasing one from Vapeworld here, as Vapeworld offers free shipping and often adds in free gifts upon purchase.
Damiana Leaf (Turnera Diffusa)
A plant native to the Southwestern United States, Damiana leaf has been used for centuries by Native Americans and Mexicans as an aphrodisiac to increase sexual potency. Some recent scientific studies have in fact confirmed that smoking the leaf does increase sexual activity in both male and female rats. It also produces a slight intoxicating effect, but it is fairly weak compared to cannabis. For best results, vaporize your Damiana leaf at 150-170C (302-347F).
A member of the mint family, Salvia Divinorum is a powerful psychedelic drug which produces short but very intense hallucinations unlike most traditional psychoactives. Be very careful when vaporizing Salvia, as vaporizing it can heighten the effects more than smoking it will. Expect to vaporize Salvia at a temperature between 230 and 250C. (446-482F).
St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum)
St John’s Wort is an herb which has been proven to have natural antidepressant effects. It is believed that St John’s Wort works by blocking the reuptake of certain neurotransmitters which have an effect on mood, and it works quite well in relieving symptoms of mild depression. Vaporize your St John’s Wort at 100-150C (212-302F) to obtain optimal effects. Warning: St John’s Wort has been known to render hormonal birth control ineffective, so if you’re on birth control be extremely careful when vaporizing with this herb!
Passion Flower (Passiflora)
Passion Flower is a shrub which is often enjoyed for its mild sedating effects, which can help alleviate symptoms of insomnia. In addition, a recent randomized controlled trial suggests that Passion Flower can also be used to treat the effects of opiate withdrawal, and is most effective when used in conjunction with Clonidine. For best results, vaporize Passion Flower between 100-150C (212-302F). Since there are over 500 different types of Passion Flower, make sure to purchase one that contains the sedating effects.
Tobacco can be a little more tricky to vaporize than other herbs out there, but it can still be done. In my experience, vaporizing tobacco can produce a very strong nicotine buzz, so be careful when you try it for the first time. Also, DO NOT use regular cigarette tobacco (from package cigarettes) in your vaporizer, as cigarettes contain many additives that can be unhealthy. I suggest using pipe tobacco, or if you must a loose organic cigarette blend. I recommend vaporizing your tobacco between 120-150C (257-302F), but feel free to experiment a little to see what works for you. I have also heard of people vaporizing shisha with some success, but I would recommend that you be careful while doing so since shisha tends to be quite sticky and may clog up your vape.
Aside from directly inhaling various herbs, you can also diffuse several aromatics into the air either to freshen up the air in your room or to help you breath easier while sick. The Arizer Extreme Q comes with a special diffuser bowl to use specifically for this purpose. Simply place some potpourri into your diffuser bowl and place a few drops of one of the following liquid extracts into the bowl, set your temperature to 50-100C (122-212F) and turn the fan on to the highest setting.
- Mint Extract: Great for freshening up the air
- Eucalyptus Oil: Works wonders for colds
Besides these herbs, I believe several other types of plants can be vaporized if they produce effects when smoked. If you have any other herbs that you like to vaporize, feel free to share it with us in the comments section!
Frequently, readers often contact me interested in knowing if it is a good idea to purchase a vaporizer from the various sellers on Amazon. Although there are some resellers that carry name brand vaporizers significantly below cost, there are a few issues with ordering from a reseller. I spoke with several vaporizer manufacturers, and here are some of the reasons why they always recommend going through a reputable distributor, or directly through the manufacturer when making a purchase.
Recently, many manufacturers have been cracking down on the unauthorized sale of their products, and have and are actively taking steps to avoid their vaporizers being sold on unauthorized channels such as Amazon. In order to try and dodge this, several Amazon resellers have gone as far as to obfuscate their company name in order to place bulk orders to then sell way below the MSRP. Although the vaporizer may be cheaper, the lower price significantly devalues the product and reduces the amount of money manufacturers can allocate to providing warranties and customer support, which brings me to my next point.
Unlike ordering from a reputable distributor or directly from the manufacturer, most vaporizers sold by those on Amazon lack a proper warranty since they are not being sold via an approved channel. As a result, if something goes wrong with your vaporizer, you must contact the reseller for a replacement which can be difficult since many Amazon resellers are fly by night and often close up shop nearly as fast as they open, making contacting one quite difficult.
In summary, I suggest avoiding Amazon altogether, and instead purchasing a unit from a reliable outfit such as VapeWorld. In addition, they offer free shipping and oftentimes an extra gift thrown in with your purchase.
As I enjoy vaporizing mianly because of the health benefits, I decided to do a little pseudo-experiment to compare just how much tar gets produced by a vaporizer versus other means of smoking. For this experiment, I decided to use my trusty Extreme Q and small bong with a 14mm downstem. Starting with the bong, I took 5 decent sized hits (the size of my bowl) and then exhaled into a paper towel. Afterwards, I took 5 Extreme Q hits and exhaled into the same paper towel. The results are shown in the photo below:
As you can see, the vaporizer produced no visible buildup, whereas the bong produced a very dark and tarry color. For someone who uses cannabis fairly often, this tar can build up in your lungs as well as irritate your throat. I would imagine a joint would produce even more tar, as it isn’t filtered at all.