Dry Vaporizer FAQ

Vapes, Globes & Dnails

What is a Vaporizer?

A vaporizer is a unit that heats material to a point at which the target ingredients (Nicotine, THC, CBD, etc.) vaporize. The bulk of the material is left behind in the form of waste and only the target components are ingested by inhaling. There are desktop units for the home, as well as portable vaporizers small enough to fit in a pocket.

The advantages of vaporizing dry and waxy oil materials that we used to burn to inhale the smoke is not limited to e-cigarettes. In fact, vaporizers reduce carcinogens (over combustion), reduce or negate odor and reduce waste. It’s important to grind the product thoroughly (though newer designs accept a coarser grind) and not pack too tightly. A dry herb vaporizer such as FlowerMate or Pax will reach it’s operating temperature of about 200 degrees Celsius in less than a minute. Short puffs allow the active ingredients to be absorbed through the mouth as well as the lungs. 2 or 3 sessions can be enjoyed from one filling but it should be stirred occasionally.

Desktop units come in two varieties: whip style for immediate use and forced air, which pushes the air past the heated material and into a balloon for later use.

There are two styles of creating the vapor:

  • Conduction – this was the original method of vapor creation for most vaporizers where the herbal material makes direct contact with the heat source to produce the vapor. While effective, the outer product is often scorched creating smoke (albeit a small fraction of smoking) and the core may not be completely vaporized.
  • Convection – herbal material does not directly touch the heat source. Instead, vaporization is achieved by passing heated air through the material, extracting the active ingredients. Most desktop vaporizers today utilize convection, whether whip or forced air. Most pens and wax style vapes use conduction but that’s quickly changing with the latest Firefly and others. Use our Tags links to sort by convection and conduction.

Globes, DNails, eNails and Pens: many vaporizers also support the use of concentrated resin from the plant material, often referred to as waxy concentrate, wax, shatter or dabs.

Globes are constructed with a battery connector, a coil screwed into it, and a glass “globe” with a mouthpiece. When the globe is attached to a battery (standard e-cig ego 510 connector) and fired, the coil (or coils) burn red hot. The glass globe is removed so that a small amount of wax can be placed directly on the coil. The wax is melted into the wick of the coil and vaporized.

Newer pens like the Yocan incorporate quartz glass over the coils to provide a cleaner, more flavorful vape with less waste.

Nails of various types heat a metal conductor upon which the concentrate is “dabbed” onto the nail. This was the original method of vaporizing concentrates and continues to be honed with electronic versions of the original nail and torch.

What to look for in a Vaporizer

First, determine if you’re looking for a desktop unit for larger sessions or a more personal setup. Desktop units are a few hundred dollars but you can easily purchase a personal vape for under a hundred dollars. Balance oven capacity, style of vaporization (convection or conduction) with prices. You’ll find a large selection of styles, sizes and prices here at Commonwealth Vapes. Narrow your search down to two or three and Google for reviews. Other buyers are your best source for feedback.

Read the Quick Start Guide to Vaporizers.