I’m hesitant to promote or endorse people or companies until I really get to know them and believe fully in what they do. If you know me personally, or followed my food blog Food and Sunshine, you are likely nodding right now. When Christopher Ray first opened Green Street Vapor I was really hesitant about him. There are a lot of people in the cannabis industry interested in making a quick buck without any thought for the best interests of patients. This doesn’t sit well with me. Overtime some mutual friends of ours encouraged me to talk with Chris and learn more about him and what Green Street Vapor was all about. I’m glad I did. He’s become a great friend and is full of incredible knowledge, passion, and an eagerness to help patients meet their needs in the most effective and cost efficient way possible.
When I reached out and asked him to put together a post explaining some of the basics of choosing the best devices for using cannabis concentrates he jumped on it without hesitation. Seriously - it was in my email inbox overnight. Before I could get the post up he tuned me into Cold Start Dabbing and we had to completely redo it. So here it is!
Choosing a Florida Medical Cannabis Concentrate Device
By Christopher Ray
Green Street Vapor Co
For several months now, concentrate delivery devices have been a frequent topic in the patient community. Terms like: “shatter, crumble, and live resin” have become common place, and have left many patients literally scratching their heads. For experienced patients, this is a moment of excitement and anticipation for whats to come...but for those new to modern Medical Cannabis, it’s clearly one of apprehension and uncertainty.
Our ongoing State and doctor recommendations are expensive, the medication gets and the last thing we need is ANOTHER expense....like a device to administer our much needed medication. Didn’t we already do this last month? And the month before? Yes....yes we did. In fact, it seems every time a new product is released, the MMTCs bring another device to support it. And other than distillate....it’s a con. These concentrates (shatter, crumble, sauce) are all the same, just different consistencies and flavors. My belief, is that in the long run these “medical delivery devices” need to be covered by some future version of insurance, or government subsidy (for MEDICAL).....but this is clearly a topic for some future day. Until then, the burden is ours.....and so hopefully I can help you find your way through all of this, without having to buy the most expensive vaporizer on the planet. But there is a flaw in my plan, and one that can be summed up in one, simple phrase - they are ALL expensive 😡.
Many of the “affordable” devices that get pushed on new patients have hidden costs. They don’t tell you at the smoke shops that you’ll have to spend $20 per month on replacement atomizers. They don’t tell you that you’ll have to buy a new battery several times per year. But even if you get lucky with a battery, in 1 year you’ve still paid for that $30 Vaporizer almost 8 times!! Tricky stuff to navigate, especially when you’re a new patient. So today my goal is to make a guide for any patient (at any skill level) to find the right device for themselves...as painlessly as possible.
A good place to start is your budget. Below, Ive recapped the common ranges (most) devices live in. It should give you some things to consider when weighing your cost.
Common Concentrate Device Price Ranges
(<$100) - This is where you’ll find the majority of the useless disposable devices I mentioned above. But it isn’t a hard rule - there ARE options worth considering in this range, but they’re few, and not easily recognized. I recommend ALL brand new patients stay in this range in the beginning. Get your feet wet, so you KNOW what YOU need, before making a serious investment in a long term device.
($100-200) - This price range is a more of a mixed bag. There are better quality devices worth considering, however there are still just as many low quality-let downs. The stakes are obviously higher in this tier. Your best bet is to find a smaller “boutique” manufacturer. Often they are US based, offer good support, and even warranty their devices. Do your home work but avoid YouTube and random review sites like the plague....most of these reviewers get device kickbacks for promotions, and even cash sponsorships. Until you know who you can trust, trust no one. I recommend starting here.
($200-300) - This is the beginning of the more expensive, and premiere vaporizers available to Medical Cannabis Patients. In this range, you’ll find less risk of a low quality device, but you DEFINITELY want to know what you want before you climb into this rabbit hole.
Choosing Your Device
To help with the process, we’ve put together a Device Selection flow chart. Visualizing the decision can help if you’re unfamiliar with modern Medical Cannabis and the devices that go with it. The chart is referenced to devices on our site because those are the vaporizers that we know best. With a little research, hopefully the general idea of this will help you find your next (or even your first) concentrate vaporizer, despite where you find it.
Chris’ Note About Cold Start Dabbing
Since initially writing and building the original corresponding graphic, I’ve spent a good amount of time with what is referred to as a Cold Start Dab Rig. The term “dabbing” has typically referred to a method of heating a titanium surface (something like a bowl) to the point that it’s literally glowing red hot. Using a dental pick, or “dab tool” you then apply the desired amount of concentrate, and “dab” (or touch) it to your still glowing surface. This method is very effective, however since concentrates have had time to evolve we now know these red hot temps are overkill. With the classic method of dabbing, temperatures often exceed 800 degrees. Not only do you NOT need to reach temps this high to vaporize concentrates, you lose all the flavor that remains from the extraction. For patients, high tempts are often not an option due to the pain and discomfort associated with inhaling a 700-800 degree dab rip. Thankfully, “stoner science” saves the day once again! With a $20 Thermal Banger & Carp Cap, you can use any glass bong or bubbler you already own to get the BEST POSSIBLE concentrate experience. Cold Start Dabs are conservative, effective, and insanely flavorful. If you haven’t tried it, you should. And for premium concentrates like Shatter and The Gold from MüV Florida, there is no easier, more affordable option than a Cold Start Dab Rig.