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by Holly Highlife
It took me a long time to warm up to the idea of vaporizing. They just never seemed to work for me. (With the exception of the Volcano, but that is a story for another time.) However the advent of small, discreet and functional vapes has changed my thinking. These devices differ from vape pens, and use the green cannabis flowers of your choosing.
My friend Mike is in love with his Firefly vape. The small, battery powered electronic device suits his needs perfectly. He admits there was a learning curve after switching from smoking. “It took me a while to learn how to use it,” he says.
Mike still smokes occasionally, but uses the vape 90 percent of the time
Many new vape users say the “high” is different, and frankly, it is. “You’re not getting carbon monoxide or any other of the 400+ compounds contained in cannabis,“ says Steve Ackerman of Organic Alternatives. You also get to skip the hydrocarbons inhaled from butane lighter.
Music legend and longtime smoker Willie Nelson has made the switch to vaporizing. Granted, he has a voice to protect, but I doubt he would use a method that didn’t get him to his happy place.
A vaporizer heats cannabis flowers to the point where the crystals, or trichomes, on the plant matter are released in the form of vapor. Trichomes contain CBD’s and THC’s, the medical and psychoactive compounds in cannabis. What’s left in vape after the use is brownish material resembling tobacco. It is devoid of active compounds and tastes terrible. (Trust me on this.)
The Pax is another very popular vape. Even smaller than the Firefly, it also operates on a rechargeable battery. The Pax has some great features. Let’s say you’re interrupted, the Pax will go into stand-by mode if turned on but not used, and save your weed. A small light indicates when you’re good to go, and a shake of the device shows battery life. It also has three temperature settings.
There are two models of the Pax, and I would recommend the new Pax2. It has a longer battery life, (my chief complaint with the older model), has no mouthpiece, and features a smaller heating chamber than the original.
Although not completely odorless, a vape only emits vapor. No smoke is created. This allows for more discreet use at concerts, in a hotel room, or your old room at home when visiting the parents.
It also eliminates the “chronic cough.” Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about. That icky, wet, cough sounds awful; and you can only claim “allergies” for so long.
The downside of using a vape is that it seems to use more flowers than traditional smoking. Only one person I spoke with felt they used less green with a vaporizer.
Prepare to spend some money on these discreet devices. A good vape will cost about $300. The good news is the Pax carries a 10-year warranty, and the Firefly warrantied for five. The websites for both vapes provide lots of information and support. Accessories like screens are available locally.
In my opinion, they are worth the money for the discretion and a cough-free existence. I guess it depends on what price you choose put on your throat and lungs. Oh, and they wont shatter when dropped like that spendy glass bong.