Photo courtesy Herbalizer
Some of the most reasonably priced yet effective plug-in vaporizers deliver high-quality vapor through plastic or silicone tubing, known as whips. The first popular whip vaporizer was arguably the original Vaporbrothers box vaporizer, introduced in 2001. The Silver Surfer and Da Buddha vaporizers from 7th Floor appeared not long after. The beauty of whip vaporizers lies in their simplicity — they are reliable workhorses with few moving parts susceptible to failure.
Several hybrid vaporizers employ a whip system, along with the capability to fill bags, including the Herbalizer, the HerbalAire and the Extreme Q from Arizer.
How They Work
Dedicated whip vaporizers consist of a ceramic heating element enclosed in a glass heater cover and housed in a wooden box (Vaporbrothers) or an aluminum cylinder (7th Floor); a glass stem, called a wand, which has a bowl for herb on one end and connects to the tubing on the other; the whip; and either a mouthpiece or water pipe adapter for connecting the whip to a bong or bubbler.
How To Use a Whip-Style Vaporizer
Step 1: Turn on your vaporizer and allow it to reach operating temperature
The time this takes varies from unit to unit. The Herbalizer takes no time at all, the Silver Surfer and Da Buddha take about five minutes, and the Vaporbrothers takes about 10 minutes.
Step 2: Fill the wand
While your vaporizer is heating up, grind your herb to a fluffy but not too fine consistency. Load the bowl by inhaling the ground herb into the glass wand (don’t forget to put a screen in the bowl). One-third to one-half full is plenty. Tamp it lightly to allow hot air to flow easily through the herb.
Step 3: Adjust the temperature setting
The Vapor Brothers, Silver Surfer, Da Buddha and HerbalAire have a dial that controls the temperature of the heating element; the Herbalizer and EQ have digital readouts. Lower temperatures produce flavorful but wispy hits while higher temps deliver vapor that isn’t as tasty but is more dense and visible. Start at around the midway mark with the dial vaporizers and around 370 degrees with the digital vaporizers. Experiment by adjusting the temperature to target the cannabinoids you want: lower temps for flavorful terpenes and psychoactive THC Delta 9, and higher temps for therapeutic cannabinoids like cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabinol (CBN).
Step 4: Inhale slowly and steadily, with one hand on the wand
Feel and taste the vapor on the tip of your tongue. The intensity of your inhalation, along with the temperature of the heating element, controls the heat of the air passing through the herb. Faster draws cool it down, slower draws create more heat. As you feel the vapor filling your lungs, separate the wand from the heating element and hold the vapor for a few seconds before you exhale.
Step 5: Mix it up
Some vaporizers focus the heat on a particular part of the bowl, usually the center, so stir between hits for better extraction.
Step 6: Know when it call it quits
As you extract the oils, the flavor begins to taste like burnt popcorn and the herb turns chocolate brown, with a crunchy consistency, leaving you with already-been-vaped herb (ABV). The ABV still has potency, so save it to make edibles, butter, oil or tincture.
Check out these suggestions for vaporizers below:
Selected Whip Vaporizers (MSRP)
Vapor Brothers: $150
Da Buddha: $190 (cosmetically blemished: $140)
Silver Surfer: $270 (cosmetically blemished: $180)
Hybrid: Whip and Bags
Extreme Q: $239
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