Over the years, most people have learned inhaling smoke of any kind into our lungs is probably not the best method of consumption. Tiny particles of burning embers and hot smoke can cause damage to the lungs and esophagus. Naturally, those looking to medicate with cannabis may want to seek a cleaner, safer method of consumption. Fortunately, thanks to technology, there are multiple ways to consume cannabis in the prolific legal market. A Weed vape pen can come in many shapes, sizes, and formats. Let's look at a few varieties of weed vape pens which take the combustion out of cannabis.
Cannabis Oil Vaporizers vs. Dry Flower Vaporizers
Maybe one of the most common products in the legal cannabis market today, hash oil vape cartridges and disposable weed vape pens filled with extracted cannabis oils are available in almost every dispensary in the legal market. While these types of devices are convenient and easy to use, they do come with a certain number of drawbacks:
- Cannabis oil extracts are only as good as the producer. May we never forget the 2015 contaminants report from the reporters at The Cannabist.
- Depending on the extraction process, extracts may be devoid of terpenes and minor cannabinoids or contain artificial terpenes for added flavor.
- Additives like PG, or propylene glycol and VG, or vegetable glycerin are common additives to hash oil cartridges and the safety of inhaling these additives is debated.
On the other hand, vaporizing dry flower provides the full range of benefits provided by all the compounds found in the plant material for maximum benefit. Additionally, there's minimal processing required, as the consumer is using dried, cured cannabis plant material. However, unlike simply rolling a joint and lighting it on fire, a weed vape pen uses two different methods for heating the materials without flame or fire.
Different Dry Weed Vaping Methods
When vaporizing cannabis, whether using dry flower or an extracted cannabis oil, nothing is actually burned, combusted, or lit on fire. Instead, through a method of gently heating the herb through either conduction or convection, the terpenes and cannabinoids boil and create a vapor which can be safely inhaled without damaging the delicate tissue in the consumer's mouth and throat.
Conduction provides more precise temperature controls which allow for quick heating and instantaneous temperature changes. However, the heating element is in direct contact with the material, which means the consumer may need to stir the material to ensure even heating. These devices are often less expensive than others.
By transferring heat to the air surrounding the material, this method provides better flavor and more consistent herb vaporization; however, the heating process is slower. Convection devices lead to much better vapor quality but may also be slightly more expensive.
Best Convection Weed Vape Pen
With the number of weed vaporizers available on the market today, choosing one can be overwhelming. So, we've taken a little time to pull together some of the best weed vaporizers available regardless of your budget requirements. Whether cost is no option or you're a starving artist there's a weed vape pen to suit your needs.
Volcano Performance Vaporizer
While not a pen per se, one simply can't talk about dry flower vaporization without mentioning the granddaddy of them all. The Volcano vaporizer has been in production for nearly 20 years. Donning the best of German engineering, the Volcano Digit provides the highest quality cannabis vaping experience with digital controls over a convection heating element. This amazing weed vaping machine has a temperature range from 104°F to 446°F and is accurate within less than 3°F. Produced with high-quality, food-safe materials and a steel-clad ceramic heating element, this is the Cadillac of Cannabis Vapor. However, with a price tag of around $599, this is a serious investment for many cannabis patients and connoisseurs.
Value Version – If you like the idea of the table-top Volcano but aren't interested in taking out a small loan for a cannabis device, take a glance at the Arizer Extreme Q. This device provides many of the same features as a Volcano, starting at just $199.99.
Claiming to be the world's first portable cannabis convection vaping device, the Firefly 2 put the convenience in convection. With zero waste, quick temperatures, the Firefly draws air from room temperature and heats it slowly to peak temperature to allow each compound, terpene, and cannabinoid to boil off at its own unique boiling point allowing consumers to get the most from each available compound in the material. While the price tag of the Firefly comes in much lower than Volcano at $330 retail, this can also be a significant investment.
Value Version – For handheld convection heating, as well as, the ability to use your vaporizer for cannabis oil and wax, check out the small, but might Quant Premium Vaporizer. This tiny, handheld device is as stylish as it is functional. Plus, with price point starting at just $140, you simply can't go wrong.
Best Conduction Weed Vape Pen
While conduction does not typically provide the best efficiency or vapor quality compared to their convection cousins, these four, conduction heating weed vape pens may be the exception to rule.
Besides just offering a large chamber for plenty of weed, the Davinci IQ allows the consumer to add other herbs such as a lavender to the "Flavor Chamber" to enhance their experience with the use of aromatherapy and other botanical compounds. With pre-set temperature paths consumers can adjust their experience to gently rise in temperature for maximum flavor, or quickly hit maximum temperature for greater potency. However, the consumer decides to medicate, the device is easily controlled through an app on your smart device. At $275 the device is still an investment but won't break the bank.
Value Version: The Davinci MIQRO is due to be released any day. Thirty-three percent smaller than the IQ, but with a price tag at just $149 and available in 5 different colors.
The PAX family of cannabis vaporizers is well known within the legal industry. The PAX 3 provides dual uses as it can be used for vaping dry cannabis flower or for concentrates. With an extra-large battery which lasts through multiple vaping sessions and 10-year warranty, this is a device which is worth the investment. Controlled through a mobile app, the PAX uses precision temperature controls with more than 60 temperature settings so the consumer can manage the vapor output along with flavors. Plus, it only takes 22 seconds to come up to temp. For $250, a consumer can get a complete Pax 3 kit and choose from 6 available colors.
Value Version: If you're not ready to spend more than two bills on a cannabis consumption device, then check out the PAX 2. While it only comes with a 2-year limited warranty, the price tag is just $150.
Arizer Air II
For those who can't decide which method they prefer, or don't want to fumble around with a smartphone app, the Arizer Air II combines both conduction and convection to provide maximum efficiency and flavor with an open-air path to improve airflow through the device. Plus, the oversized battery provides more than an hour of total vape time. However, the Arizer Air II takes more than a minute to reach the maximum temperature of 428°F. The Air II normally retails around $180, while the original Air can be purchased for just over $130.
With cannabis on the rise as a health and wellness supplement rather than just a recreational intoxicant, many consumers and patients are thankful to have alternatives to smoking. Regardless of which method or device you choose, rest assured you're doing your lungs a favor by investing in a dry, weed vape pen today.