Review - Volcano Classic
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The Volcano Classic from Storz & Bickel is an icon in the world of vaporizers. So we decided to put it on the table for a test.
The Volcano Classic is made by the German company Storz & Bickel and is a true icon in the vaporizer market. This vaporizer is already on the market since 2000 and the producing company Storz & Bickel is considered as a true pioneer of vaporizing. A recognizable and iconic design, combined with some of the best functionality around. These are handcrafted machines with patented technology, that do not come cheap.
So, 17 years after its introduction in 2000, is the Volcano Classic still worth that high price with such a big competition these days?
When it comes to durability, the Volcano Classic is still one of the best vaporizers on the market today. The build quality is outstanding and it is made from quality parts, therefore it is built to last. The long and good warranty of three years should give you a hint about the quality; The Volcano Classic has been designed to last for years.
There is little to no risk of doing damage to the machine by accidentally bumping in on it or dropping it, because of the high-quality build, although, we do not suggest you play soccer with your Volcano Classic or drop it on purpose.
The temperature is very easy to adjust: Simply by turning the knob on the front of the machine, which has nine settings, counting up from 130 to 230°C (266 to 446°F). The temperature regulators are very effective and the forced air system practically eliminates any risk of combustion of the plant material or extract you want to vaporize; you don’t want them to catch fire and go up in smoke, that contains chemicals or carcinogens.
The whole point of vaporizing is to slowly heat up the plant material or extract to only have the active ingredients and cannabinoids vaporize and leave the harmful substances behind.
Because of the easy temperature regulation, the Volcano Classic does an awesome job at creating nice and dense vapour, although we do recommend, that you start at a low temperature and slowly turn up the heat, because ingredients of lower quality could still be burned if the heat is turned up too high. The Volcano Classic achieves great results from both extracts and dry herbs.
The Volcano Classic has the option to use the easy valve system or the solid valve system, that uses vaporizer bags and greatly simplifies drawing for an easy vaporizing experience. The bag style allows for easy sharing in big groups and the vapour can be safely stored in the balloon for later use if needed.
One of the biggest drawbacks might be, that it is an expensive unit - the price may be a bit steep for some people. The Volcano Classic costs you around €400 ($470), which makes it to the higher range of vaporizers in the smoke shop, so if you are not sure if vaporizing is your thing, you might want to look for a less expensive option.
It is a desktop model and not meant to be mobile, so it is not designed to be used outside or on the go. It fits easily on a counter top or table, because it is not a very big unit, but it will not fit in your pocket. Besides, it needs a standard electrical socket for operation.
You can only use bags or balloons – no whips, unless you purchase a vapordome or similar product from outside the Volcano’s regular manufacturer. The vapour might not be as good through a whip than it is when used with a balloon, but it is easier to control the amount of vapour that is being created.
The Volcano Classic does not have an automatic shutoff, meaning, that if you forget to turn it off the machine will be heating until you turn it off and it was not designed for this. Leaving it on overnight or for long periods could possibly damage the parts and will wear down the system. Eventually this could lead to parts requiring repairs or having to replace the entire system itself prematurely.
Somewhat longer start up times are another issue with the Volcano Classic. It can take the machine about 3 to 5 minutes to fully heat up the machine and reach the desired temperature. By turning the knob you can approximate the desired temperatures, but you cannot tell precisely what temperature the vaporizer is set to.
The Volcano Classic might not be the cheapest or the most mobile vaporizer on the market, but it has a wide range of options, is easy to use and guaranteed to last you a long time.
Even though the machine itself is not designed to be moved around, the balloons can store the enriched vapour for up to 8 hours and can be filled with quite an amount of vapour if required. This vaporizer is more suited to be used at home or inside.
The choice between solid valve or easy valve system is one of comfort of use versus expenses and custom wishes in the long term. Whether you are looking for an easy to use, but reliable vaporizer or if you are looking for a more precise and secure way of vaporising plant materials to get the active ingredients and aroma you specifically want, the Volcano Classic forced air desktop vaporizer is the way to go.
Even though this machine has been on the market for almost 2 decades, it still belongs to the top of vaporizers when it comes to quality. Is it worth it? Yes. Would we buy it ourselves for that amount of money? Uhmm ... maybe. But first we're going to look further. But it's an option for sure.