As you can probably guess, the Volcano Vaporizer is named for its conical shape. Do not expect this device to produce temperatures equal to that of an erupting volcano: excessive heat is not where the name comes from. Trying to reproduce an inferno would nullify the advantages and purposes of vaporizing: that is, to take the combustion out of smoking and to release the best flavor and aroma possible. Vaporizing produces no ash or tar.
Adjusting the Temperature
Vaporizers come in all shapes, sizes, and formats, with some offering no control over temperature. Larger models like this one are fitted with dials or buttons for adjusting the temperature, in this case to within + or -1.5F of one’s desired setting. This level of accuracy is attributed to the Digit model released in 2007, while the Classic (first sold at around the turn of the century) is a little less accurate, but still an amazing machine.
Use touch-buttons on the Digit or turn a dial on your Classic Volcano. Your temperature range is 104F to 446F (40C to 230C). Why is there such a range? Some herbs simply respond better to a lower temperature.
What is Being Vaporized?
Both of these units are for use with oils, spices, or herbs. The user is not restricted. Flexibility is one reason to choose a Volcano. The company does not supply materials, however; for that you need to find a reliable supplier. Since this is an expensive machine, don’t skimp on the quality of your aromatherapy materials.
What are the Parts inside a Volcano Vaporizer?
A Classic and a Digit vary only slightly in their construction. The Digit fitted with an Easy Valve system comes with a mouthpiece, balloon Jacket, LED display, diaphragm, valve, filling chamber, air channel, insulation, temperature fuse and sensor, heating cartridge, air pump, and heating block. If that sounds like a lot, every item has its purpose and fits neatly inside the unit. View a diagram on the Storz and Bickel website.
Materials are designed to handle these high temperatures without creating unappetizing smells or affecting the taste of vapor in any way. These materials are all food grade.
The difference between an Easy Valve and a Solid Valve system is the number of parts each one uses. With an Easy Valve system, your balloon and heating chamber come into fewer parts than is the case with a Solid Valve, but the latter is cheaper. In either case, the balloon will last for months and can be replaced separately.
German engineers have constructed a device that is meant to last for years and so far, with careful use, it truly does. Reviewers talk about their machine working as well today as it did when they first bought it several years earlier. That’s why it costs such a lot of money to buy a Volcano Vaporizer.
How much money are we talking about? The Classic System costs either $420 on its own or $539 with the full kit. That includes a valve set, filling chamber, screen set, air filter set, liquid pad, 5-piece 3-meter balloon tube, cleaning brush, grinder, and manual. The Digit set costs $550 or $669, these prices representing the unit alone or a Volcano with the same kit of pieces. The reason a Digit is so expensive is that digital technology is more accurate and costlier to install.
What you need to realize is that cheap vaporizers behave cheaply. They let you down when you need them. They run out of power or pieces fall off. They overheat and burn your herbs or your fingers. Is it worth spending $500 or more on a vaporizer? According to consumers, the big initial pay-out is well worth it. They have an efficient, sturdy, safe machine that lasts for years and provides excellent service, just like the company that makes it. Their herbs and oils taste the way they should without any contamination.
Storz and Bickel
Clients have found Storz and Bickel courteous and reliable. Their staff do an efficient job making these machines (as well as the Plenty, their newer offering) and of looking after customers. They’ve been around a long time compared to many vaporizer manufacturers and have had time to hone their skills in all departments.
Not only that: Storz and Bickel have managed something no other vaporizer manufacturer has achieved. They are the only firm of their kind to meet ISO quality manufacturing standards.
Volcano Vaporizer Review
Are there any down sides to the Volcano Vaporizer?
The biggest issue is cost. A lot of people who want an alternative to smoking their herbs will find it hard to come up with $500. Prices listed on the Storz and Bickel website are as cheap as they come; no one else is selling them more cheaply unless they are unauthorized.
Only authorized distributors can provide the all-important 3-year warranty that protects consumers if their machines are faulty. Don’t choose cheap machines. Treat your brand new Vaporizer with care so as to minimize the cost of replacing parts. It doesn’t need that much cleaning, but keep it clean.
The Volcano is also a table-top device not really convenient for portable vaporizing. Consumers really have no choice but to sit down at a table with this thing. But multiple users can partake of the vapor by passing the balloon around, so it’s social.
Otherwise, there seems to be nothing against the Volcano. It will provide excellent service, offers the flexibility of being compatible with multiple materials, and is classy-looking.