vaporizers canadaBy now every medical marijuana patient should be aware of the existence of vaporizers and the benefits of vaporizing marijuana as compared to smoking it. Did you know that the plant matter left over in the vaporizer can be extracted and used to make edibles with? If you own a vaporizer you should be saving your vaped weed as it’s a great low-cost way to “practice” making your favorite cannafoods! Depending on the temperature you vaporize the material at, medical marijuana edibles made with vaporized weed can turn out pretty strong!

So What Is Vaporizing?

If you’ve been living under a rock for the last 15-20 years, vaporizers are devices that heat up marijuana just to the point of vaporizing the moisture in the plant without burning it. The moisture that results from this heating process is then inhaled by the user, just like smoke, and the medicine takes effect. The cannabis can be heated to the point of vaporization in one of three methods. The first (and probably most uncommon) method is radiation. This heating method can be achieved by holding a magnifying glass over the weed on a sunny day, to concentrate the sunlight on the weed enough to warm it to the point of vaporization. The second is conduction, in which the marijuana is placed on a metal plate or similar surface, to which heat is applied. The weed is then warmed by the metal plate. The third, and most popular method, is convection. Convection heating is achieved by passing warm air over the weed, which warms it to the point of vaporization. Most vaporizers are small electric machines, either corded or battery-operated, which warm the weed by convection heating. We will be talking about electric vaporizers in this guide.

(For the Record: There are also “manual” vaporizers that look somewhat like a pipe, and like a pipe require a flame to warm the marijuana via conduction — steer clear! They aren’t worth it!)

While we do plan on writing a few vapor condensing techniques in our advanced hypermodern section, in general you are typically going to be cooking with pre-vaporized plant matter.  To give you some background info about the chemical constituents of cannabis, we have a handy list for you. Keep in mind that these are vaporization temperatures, meaning they tell you at what temperature the chemical is released from the plant matter. We have found it to be beneficial to vape at a lower temperature (~315 degrees Fahrenheit) to release the Δ-9-THC for the head high and mental benefits but keep the temperature low enough that cannabinoids and terpenes stay in the plant matter for the body high and health benefits, allowing you to dose yourself more precisely. Essentially by vaporizing the marijuana are certain temperatures you are “saving some for later” (i.e. saving whatever is above the temperature you vaporized at). Use the following data to decide what temperature is best for you:

Phytocannabinoids, Their Boiling Points, and Properties

  • Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-9-THC) Boiling point: 314.6°F (157°C) Properties: Euphoriant, Analgesic, Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, Antiemetic
  • Cannabidiol (CBD) Boiling point: 320-356°F (160-180°C) Properties: Anxiolytic, Analgesic, Antipsychotic, Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, Antispasmodic
  • Δ-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-8-THC) Boiling point: 347-352.4°F (175-178°C) Properties: Resembles Δ-9-THC, Less psychoactive, More stable Antiemetic
  • Cannabinol (CBN) Boiling point: 365°F (185°C) Properties: Sedative, Antibiotic
  • Cannabichromene (CBC) Boiling point: 428°F (220°C) Properties: Antiinflammatory, Antibiotic, Antifungal
  • Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) Boiling point: <428°F (< 220°C ) Properties: Analgesic, Euphoriant

Terpenoid Essential Oils, Their Boiling Points, and Properties

  • β-caryophyllene Boiling point: 246.2°F (119°C) Properties: Anti-inflammatory, Cytoprotective (gastric mucosa), Antimalarial
  • β-myrcene Boiling point: 330.8-334.4°F (166-168°C) Properties: Analgesic. Anti-inflammatory, Antibiotic, Antimutagenic
  • 1,8-cineole (eucalyptol) Boiling point: 348.8°F (176°C) Properties: AChE inhibitor, Increases cerebral, blood flow, Stimulant, Antibiotic, Antiviral, Anti-inflammatory, Antinociceptive
  • p-cymene Boiling point: 350.6°F (177°C) Properties: Antibiotic, Anticandidal, AChE inhibitor
  • d-limonene Boiling point: 350.6°F (177°C) Properties: Cannabinoid agonist?, Immune potentiator, Antidepressant, Antimutagenic
  • Linalool Boiling point: 388.4°F (198°C) Properties: Sedative, Antidepressant, Anxiolytic, Immune potentiator
  • Pulegone Boiling point: 435.2°F (224°C) Properties: Memory booster (?), AChE inhibitor, Sedative, Antipyretic
  • α-pinene Boiling point: 312.8°F (156°C) Properties: Anti-inflammatory, Bronchodilator, Stimulant, Antibiotic, Antineoplastic, AChE inhibitor
  • Δ-3-carene Boiling point: 334.4°F (168°C) Properties: Anti-inflammatory
  • terpineol-4-ol Boiling point: 408.2°F (209°C) Properties: AChE inhibitor. Antibiotic
  • Borneol Boiling point: 410°F (210°C) Properties: Antibiotic
  • α-terpineol Boiling point: 422.6-424.4°F (217-218°C) Properties: Sedative, Antibiotic, AChE inhibitor, Antioxidant, Antimalarial

Flavonoid and Phytosterol Components, Their Boiling Points, and Properties

  • β-sitosterol Boiling point: 273.2°F (134°C) Properties: Anti-inflammatory, 5-α-reductase, inhibitor
  • Apigenin Boiling point: 352.4°F (178°C) Properties: Anxiolytic, Antiinflammatory, Estrogenic
  • Cannflavin A Boiling point: 359.6°F (182°C) Properties: COX inhibitor, LO inhibitor
  • Quercetin Boiling point: 482°F (250°C) Properties: Antioxidant, Antimutagenic, Antiviral, Antineoplastic