When a desktop vaporizer comes out for review, editors usually compare it to the finest item in its class: the Volcano. Not much can really compare, thanks to all of the benchmarks Storz & Bickel has created. Each one comes with a 3-year warranty, but the funny thing about that is you probably won’t need it. Three years is one of the longest warranty periods in the business for the most durable device around.
Ironically, shorter warranties signal that a device won’t outlast the year: a company isn’t willing to back its product for more than 3 months, maybe 6. Storz & Bickel does not balk at standing behind their hand-made German-engineered vaporizer because their product’s efficiency is unlikely to be called into question. If it is, this company looks after its customers.
Buy directly from Volcano Vaporizer or purchase a device from one of their authorized re-sellers. The top price for a digital Volcano with an Easy Valve starter kit included should be around $670. Always buy from an authorized retailer. Avoid anything that resembles the Volcano but was not made by Storz & Bickel in Tittlingen, Germany
Details of Perfection
The exterior is made from polished stainless steel shaped, fittingly, like a volcano. The face of a Volcano Digit shows the temperature you set and temperature achieved in clear, easy-to-read format. Figures are accurate to within a few degrees and range from 40C to 230C or 104F to 446F. If the device is not used after thirty minutes it will switch off automatically.
A Volcano Classic possesses most of the same features except the display and buttons. Change temperature from 130C to 230C or 266F to 446F using a dial. Both desktop vaporizers are simple to use.
This is an assisted-draw machine using a balloon to convey vapor to the user. A valve set comes already connected if you purchase the whole package. The generator creates hot air which flows into the balloon and is captured there for immediate use (or it can be stored in the balloon for up to one hour, but it tastes freshest when used immediately.) Pass the bag around to inhale or use it alone. Because of this balloon method, the Volcano is a preferred device for anyone with breathing problems. A direct-draw machine requires effort, but the fan in your Volcano generator forces air into the balloon so all you have to do is inhale gently through the mouthpiece.
Balloon Valve Kit
An Easy-Valve kit contains 5 balloons with mouthpieces, a filling chamber, and a pad for essential oils. There is a normal screen set and a cleaning brush. Replace balloons when they become dirty: Storz & Bickel recommends after every 50 to 200 uses at your discretion. That’s a big range, but consumers are grown-ups, able to decide when cleanliness (or lack of it) is affecting their enjoyment of a material.
Easy Valve vs. Solid Valve
The Solid Valve takes more work to use because it is a custom balloon set. With 10 feet/3m of balloon material, the user selects her favorite size of balloon. It is a less costly option but takes more work.
If you don’t mind that kind of task, then save money with the Solid Valve system. If you prefer an easy option, that’s where an Easy Valve set got its name. You can buy the entire kit separately from your purchase of a Volcano vaporizer or select individual pieces when they break or go missing (the consumer is more likely to lose them than to break anything).
How to Affect Vapor Quality
The Storz & Bickel website is a great source of information. Here you can learn what can be done to alter the quality of vapor; little adjustments you can make to enjoy more intense or mellow flavor.
For a start, consider the quality of materials. Buy the best herbs or concentrates you can afford, preferably organic. Secondly, adjust the temperature you have the device set at. Some materials are vaporized most effectively at a higher temperature and others at lower settings.
Another factor to consider is how finely your herbs were ground. The Volcano comes with an herb grinder so use it. Consider how much of a material you have used: is it enough or too much?
Although the chamber is large, overfilling it can lead to inefficient vaporization. Was your herb mill clean when you ground the herbs? How old is the liquid pad? Perhaps that needs to be thrown out and replaced.
Vapers should clean their Volcano regularly but will also find that, unlike some products that become grimy in short order, the Volcano remains relatively clean. It will only need light maintenance most of the time. If you have tried everything else but the flavor of your vapor is stale or unappetizing, it really is time to clean it. If even this doesn’t work, call customer service for advice.
There isn’t really any way to save money when purchasing a brand new Volcano unless you happen to know of a flash sale taking place at a local vape shop or a give-away on Facebook. Usually, the minimum price is over $400 for the Volcano Classic base alone. Add a $119 valve set and that’s over $500 just to start. Perhaps a second-hand one would be okay from a reliable friend or contact but I would be wary, and who sells their Volcano anyway?
Besides, this is a lifetime investment. There are reviews on the internet from consumers whose Volcano has lasted years without a change in performance; not a single blip. Voltage has remained consistent. The Infinite Temperature Toggle built into their device has maintained a 9F/5C variation in temperature this whole time.
I’ve never seen “new and improved” next to the Volcano on a sales page because there isn’t anything to improve. If the cost is holding you back, picture the 2, 3, or 4 vaporizers you could purchase in the time your Volcano will last (maybe more). All of the maintenance ideas listed above will not just improve flavor but increase the lifespan of this amazing piece of German technology.