Last month, we sat down with vaporizer expert Mark McCoy, founder of Vrip Tech (a Northern California-based company that produces the highest quality vaporizers on the planet) to find out about the benefits of vaporizing. This week, he shared his top tips on how to get the highest quality vapor. And by high quality vapor he means more densely aromatic, broader spectrum of actives per inhalation, more concentrated and bio-active vapors that are cooled and moisture conditioned.
1. Maintain proper temperature
There are at least 60 pharmacologically-active compounds in cannabis, all of which are released at different temperatures. The aromatic terpenoids begin to vaporize first and at the lowest temperatures (»126°C), but the more bio-active cannabidiol (CBD), cannabinol (CBN), and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) do not vaporize until they reach significantly higher temperatures (206.3°C,212.7°C,149.3°C, respectively). So in order to receive the benefits of all of the compounds in cannabis in the same inhalations, you must ensure that your vaporizer maintains the high end of that temperature range at the point of extraction without going over and producing components in smoke.
2. Use a vaporizer that provides rapid onset delivery
As we just explained, all of the medicinal components of cannabis have a broad temperature range. So in order to get them in the same inhalation, you have to extract as rapidly as possible. Using a vaporizer that provides rapid onset delivery of a full spectrum inhalation will deliver aromatics and the actives concurrently. Not only will this deliver the highest quality vapor, but it will require you to use a smaller amount of medicine at a time.
3. Ensure even extraction
Even extraction goes hand in hand with maintaining proper temperatures and rapid onset delivery. Without even extraction, there will be “hot spots” in the medicine, which means you won’t be able to reach the ideal temperature and you won’t receive a full spectrum inhalation. VripTech accomplishes even extraction through the design of its chamber bowl, which utilizes a sequential venturi heat intake effect to accelerate a vortex of hot air through the herb and give an even and faster extraction.
4. Minimize oxidation
Minimizing oxidation during the collection and delivery phase of vaporizing creates the freshest and most bioactive vapor possible. Oxidation—or the addition of oxygen to a compound with a loss of electrons—turns active vapor constituents into less active components, which means the normally perceived and desired physioactive effects are altered or minimized (this is why many ineffective vapor experiences are described as “overly heavy” by smokers). The sequential venturi heat intake effect noted above used in conjunction with a water pipe for delivery can effectively eliminate oxidation through the bulk of the vapor volume inhaled. This results in a higher quality vapor being delivered and improved flavor and effects.
5. Run the vapor through water or ice
Even though vapor is cleaner than smoke and contains less particulate matter than smoke, most vaporizers utilize a dry delivery method. The heat and the dryness in the vapor can irritate the throat and bronchial tree. But running the vapor through water and/or past ice to moisture condition and cool prior to inhalation can reduce or eliminate irritation of the throat and upper airway. This can be accomplished by medicating with a vaporization “tool” based system—such as VripTech’s Vaporization heat wand and vaporization chamber bowl—that works in conjunction with your existing water pipe/bong or with a vaporization water tool. Even bigger bonus? This method compliments the ritual of smoking that most people are accustomed to.