WAX and Concentrate Vaporizer Facts you need to know
You’ve no doubt heard about or noticed the “buzz” (pun intended) around the topic of extracts, wax and concentrates in the world of vaping.
But if you’re like many of us, you might not have a good grasp on what each are or what vaping with extracts, concentrates or waxes is all about.
Hey, we get it. The world of vaping is evolving at breakneck speed, and with all the new devices, mods, and substrates hitting the shelves on the daily it’s downright impossible to keep up with everything. Case in point, we recently launched the world’s FIRST ever induction heat vaporizer (the Loto Lux).
In this article we’ll cover all you need to know about concentrates, extracts and waxes.
Extracts and Concentrates
Extracts are all the rage, but what are they? Extracts are commonly a combination of butane hash oil (BHO) and CO2 oil. These two components are often referred to as the wax and oil.
Utilizing a chemical process, cannabinoids can be effectively and safely extracted from the cannabis sativa plant. The end results is a concentrated and sticky residue known as “concentrate.” In this regard, the concentrate is an extract of the plant.
Extract Vaping: How it Works
Extracts are typically enjoyed with the use of either an e-Nail or dab pen. These are the preferred choices, due to their ability to provide the intended effect for users without generating any smoke. In this regard they can be used discretely, as well as in areas where smoking and vaping might not be allowed due to the intrusive clouds of smoke or vapor.
Vaporizers designed to work with extracts work to heat the oil and wax combo to temperatures at which they release various compounds aromatically (i.e. in the air). Depending on the extract, these compounds may include either CBD or THC.
When inhaled, those compounds retain their pharmacological properties in much the same way as they would if inhaled as smoke, but in a cleaner, purer and more unadulterated state. The end result is the atomizing of the concentrate into a potent, concentrated and flavorful vapor.
NOTE: Those inexperienced with the use of extracts or concentrates may want to use caution when first partaking. Concentrates, as the name suggests, are concentrated. As such, they are considered to be (in most cases) more potent. For example, when measured both CBD and THC levels have been noted to be as much as five times higher in waxes and oils than in the dry herb forms.
Types of Concentrates, Waxes and Extracts
- Butane Hash Oil (BHO)
Sap / Honey – As the name suggests, this substance is a thick, viscous and translucent substrate. If dried out it becomes glass-like, hard and brittle. In its solid form, honey is referred to as “shatter” or “pull and snap”
Wax – This is a generic term often referring to any type of extract with crystalized molecules. Hard wax is known as honeycomb or crumble, and softer forms as budder.
Although not technically an extract, this term often gets thrown around in the same conversations. Kief is the sand-like organic material that accumulates in the 3rd compartment of a dry herb grinder. Its general components include resin glands from the trichomes of the plant.
Hash is simply kief that has been compressed into a brick.
- CO2 Oil
This oil is created by combining pressure with CO2 to produce an amber colored syrup. In contrast to other extract types, CO2 oil can be purchased in pre-filled cartridges for use in oil vape devices.
Vaping vs Smoking – differences
When it comes to enjoying extracts and concentrates, vaping is often a preferred medium for a few reasons:
- Greater level of convenience
- Improved health and safety profile (no combustion)
- Can use in more places (i.e. indoors due to no smoke)
- Portable and inconspicuous
- Quickly dissipating vapor (i.e. no lingering smell)
- Stronger purer delivery of THC or CBD
Choosing Between Oil and Wax Extracts
When deciding which option is best, there are a few aspects to consider. Let’s take a deeper look…
Oil - Due to the extraction process required, oils tends to be less potent than its wax counterpart.
Wax – If potency is your goal, wax concentrates are the clear winner. Depending upon the concentrate levels of THC, CBD or other desired extracts can reach as high as 80%.
Ease of Use
Oil – When it comes to convenience and ease of use, oil typically wins out. Given that it often comes in “pre-filled” cartridges, this one is a no-brainer. There’s no mess, no cleaning, and no preparation. You simply load in the cartridge and you’re off to the races.
Wax – Requires loading or packing your vaporizer. Depending on the consistency you may need to dab it into the coil.
Oil – We’ve all got budgets to adhere to. As for price, this one is a bit of a mixed bag. Oil varies in pricing depending on the type, brand, potency, etc. Given that oils tend to be less potent, some users go through more of it than wax, so you may find yourself needing to re-fill more often.
Wax – As with oils, the price of waxes also varies with brand, type, potency and the like. Given that it is more potent, a little typically goes a long way, and you may find that it ends up lasing you longer than oil counterparts.
Wax Vaporizers: What’s the deal?
Vaping is easy, but finding the right device can be a challenge.
Wax vaporizers or pens are designed to be portable and discrete, as well as stylish. They normally consist of a chamber for the coil(s), a battery and a mouthpiece, with all of the aforementioned enclosed in a metal casing.
Casings are generally metal/steel and are designed to protect your hands from heat. Lower end models may use rubber or plastic for the mouthpiece, while higher end models typically use the preferred medium of glass or steel.
The major difference, aside from aesthetics and quality of parts, are the options in coils. These coils are located within the cartridge of the pen/device. The connection between the cartridge and the device is most often 510 threaded. If both the device and the cartridge are 510 then they are compatible.
As it relates to the coils, wax vape devices and pens have one of the following:
- Ceramic coils
- Quartz coils
Each of which provide a very different experience to the end user.
Ceramic is known for its high tolerance to heat, as well as its durability and resistance to abrasion. These coils heat up gradually, typically taking an estimated 20-30 seconds to reach maximum temperature. This results in delivering the vapor in a controlled and mediated manner.
The end user, as a result, experiences a smoother drag/draw. Ceramic coils are typically the better option for beginner or novice users. Another added benefit to ceramic coils is that they are easy to clean and maintain.
In contrast, quartz coils heat up rapidly, resulting in an intense rush of vapor. Drawing from vape devices with a quartz coil results in a rush of vapor that may take getting used to. Due to the volume and intensity of the vapor, these coils also typically produce a strong robust flavor.
Given the shorter draws needed to produce larger hits, these vape units might be easier to use once you get the hang of it. Both the thickness and strength of the vapor can be influenced by adding more coils.
Oil/Concentrate Vaporizers: What’s the deal?
Oil concentrate vaporizers are, as you might have guessed, used to vape oils. From hemp to other organic extracts like chamomile, these units get the job done right.
The major difference with oil vaporizers has to do with the tanks, of which there are either re-fillable or disposable models.
Pre-filled tanks are easy, convenient and great for fast on-the-go vaping. The majority of pre-filled tanks are designed to be disposable. Conversely, refillable tanks or cartridges can be re-used and re-filled when you run dry.
Considerations when Choosing a Wax/Concentrate Vaporizer
When it comes to concentrate and wax vaping there are a few key considerations to take into account.
- What are the key aspects you’re looking for?
- Ease of use
- Desired Vapor
- Interested in thick robust clouds
- Are you a flavor connoisseur
- Heating Coils /Atomizers
Arguably the most important component, your device simply won’t work without a coil/atomizer. As it relates to wax and concentrates you have the choice between:
In the end, the choice is yours, and you may need to test the waters so to speak in order to find the best fit. Talk to your friends, read reviews, and if you want to try a few options: Shop All Hemper Vaporizers
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