From: simon@lsupoz.apana.org.au (Simon Rumble)
Date: 8 Nov 1993 01:41:46 +1000

Well I've been talking about it for ages but always put it off as 'too much hassle.' You know what procrastination did for Hamlet so I finally got off my bum and did something. I made my Vapouriser Mark 1. It's quite primitive but has shown me very dramatic results.

First of all, I find a vapouriser hit is perfectly smooth -- it's almost as if you're taking a toke of nothing -- but not quite. The smell is very pine-ish, not as dope normally is, that heady, sweet smell. The vapour is a pure white smoke that rises up.

A vapouriser hit is also much more efficient than a normal hit from a bong, I found. Out of the dope I normally smoke in one session, I have had 4 sessions -- which is great! More potent, no lung burn and no carcinogens. Just good, clean fun :)

So where did I start? Okay -- the first thing I did was steal the standard cigarette lighter from my Mum's car. This looks like this :

  ----
 |    |
 |    |
--------
   ||
  /__\
  

You push the little bit on the bottom to push it up and a little element pokes out. This is the standard lighter as fitted to most non-Volvo cars (in Australia at least). The Volvo ones have a slightly different design.

Okay so the next thing I did was work out how to power the thing. I got a 12 Volt transformer which was used for my train set in my younger days. This is great because it has a variable power slider but you could always buy/use a normal transformer and attach some sort of knob to regulate. At 12 Volts it's quite safe to play around with.

Okay now here is a picture of what it looks like with wires attached. I used 4 core telephone cable and just spun two pairs together so I had two outputs.

      /------  + or - 12V
  ----   
   ||
  ----
 |    |
 | ---|------  + or - 12V
--------
   ||
  /__\
  

Note how the element bit is poking out. I did this by taping it poking out on the handle. + or - doesn't matter, just so long as you have one of each . The metal 'skirt' around the bottom must touch the wire down there. The element prong should be bent down and placed as close to the edge of the element as possible - with it still sticking it. Because you can't use solder or anything, this can be tricky. Make sure the wire is twisted and ready to insert. Push the elements (they're flexible) aside and stick it in. When the go back into place, they trap the wire inside. I used 4 core wire so I was able to put one wire on each side of the element -- for greater reliabilty.

Now we have to make an enclosure so those precious vapours don't go sailing away for the insects to enjoy (ever noticed mozzies always come around when you're smoking? :).

I used a "Mount Franklin" mineral water bottle which turned out perfect. It has a mouth-piece where the lighter fitted in perfectly. You tape it into place. with the wires dangling down through the mouthpiece (can be tricky because it's such a snug fit.

I then cut the top section from where the bottle starts to have straight sides. Next trim the edges so that the bottom (mouth end) fits inside the top. Ascii art time again.

     __
    |  |
   /    \
  |      |   Now the mouthpiece of a Mount Franklin water
  |      |   bottle is exactly the same size as that on a
  |      |   normal 1.25 Litre bottle of soft drink - this
  |      |   is important for a snug fit of the lighter.
  |______|
  

Okay so you cut off the top bit which leaves you with:

     /---------- hole to suck through
 --- ---
|       |
|       |
|       |
|\_ _ _/|
   |-|    
    | <----- lighter with wires dangling down to transformer
    -
  

Okay so there you have it. You place your pot (only a small mount, finely chopped so that allthe pot is in contact with the element) and turn on the voltage. You know it's hot enough when a pure white smoke comes out of the pot in a thin stream. If it starts burning, wait 'till it goes out and try again.

Oh yeah, you see the top is detachable so you can put the pot in :)

Okay so as I said, this is only the Mark 1 so in future I will make it more air-tight (possibly through use of kitchen plastic ware) and get hold of a decent thermometer to calibrate it to the precise temperature required (someone said 97 degrees C?).

Another advantage of this type of setup is it doesn't stink out the entire place. The smell is very localised and doesn't spread much. It isn't even really an unpleasant smell as stale smoke can be.

Okay students: questions?

Well I'll see you all in vapouriser102 -- coming soon to a newsgroup near you :)


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