The 510 Vape Pen

November 07, 2021 Industry News and Facts No Comments »


What is a Cannabis Vape Pen?

Cannabis Vape pens are of type of vaporizer that is specifically designed to vaporize cannabis distillates and oils. Vape pens consist of a reusable vape battery and a cartridge that you will need to dispose of once the oils within it is fully vaporized. The most common reusable cannabis vape pen batteries contain a 510-thread making it compatible with a large portion of vape cartridges on the legal market.

What is inside of a vape cartridge?

Cartridge contents are produced in a multitude of ways, resulting in extracts that can contain many different ingredients. The chamber of a vape cartridge is filled with a oil or distillate, which contains concentrated amounts of cannabinoids and most  terpenes.  During the distillation process, raw cannabis oil may be stripped of all flavour and aromatic compounds, then mixed with terpenes to reintroduce flavours, and infused with some form of glycol — polyethylene glycol (PEG), propylene glycol (PG), or vegetable glycerin (VG). It’s also common for cartridges to be filled with naturally derived terpenes to create exotic flavours that smell and taste like a variety of different things like “Magic Melon” or “Banana Kush”.

When choosing a vape cartridge there are many factors and ingredients that come into play. It is important to know what type of oil it contains, whether and how it’s flavored, and if there are any cutting agents, as all these factors affect your overall vaping experience. It is also important to note that while all legal vape cartridges contain cannabinoids, not all cartridges contain terpenes.

Here is a list of some contents found in a typical vape cartridges (this is not stating ALL vape cartridges contain all of these):

1.     Cannabis-derived terpenes: Cannabis terpenes sourced from cannabis. Full-spectrum in composition, products made with these terpenes contain a high percentage of monoterpenes that have not been oxidized or degraded by heat application.

2.     Steam-distilled terpenes: Softer in taste than extracted terpenes that have been isolated without utilizing heat, many steam-distilled terpenes are lost in the water used to produce steam, aka “pot water.”

3.     Hydrosols: Hydrosols are a by-product of steam distillation and low-heat distillations. They are classified as floral waters (i.e., essential oils) and contain only small percentages of actual terpenes. Heat is utilized and degrades the terpenes, too.

4.     Non-cannabis-derived terpenes: Terpenes sourced directly from plant leaves, fruits or other organic sources, rather than from cannabis. It is impossible to recreate the aroma or flavor of the original plant/cultivar utilizing terpenes from non-cannabis plants, but a gross approximation can be achieved.

5.     Artificial flavors: Typically, the artificial flavors found in cannabis cartridges are sourced from the e-cigarette industry. There are thousands of flavors, but their safety is in question (e.g., diacetyl causing “popcorn lung”).

6.     HTFSE (High-Terpene Full-Spectrum Extract): Made from hydrocarbon extraction, there has been a recent trend of producing these products from pressed rosin. Also called sauce, HTFSE has high terpene content and is aromatic and flavorful.

7.     CO2 Extracted: Some CO2 extractors collect a few available terpenes from CO2 extraction, however more often than not, the cannabis product utilized to extract is dried, thus much of the available monoterpenes are lost in the drying process. This will result in a terpene composition that is mostly comprised of basic primary terpenes and low percentages of available monoterpenes. Therefore, both the final aroma and flavor are not as strong as HTFSEs, or if you had utilized a no-heat methodology of terpene isolation.

How is the high different?

Vape pens allow you to inhale cannabis vapor instead of smoke but many users report a similar experience to smoking cannabis. Similar to smoking cannabis, a vapor high kicks in fairly quickly and can last anywhere from 40 minutes to multiple hours depending on many factors. A recent study released by John Hopkins has shown that vaporizing cannabis does in fact provide a more intense high compared to smoking flower of the same dose. When vaping cannabis concentrates it is important to be mindful of your dosage – especially for first time users. According to this research, as published in the JAMA Network Open, “vaporized cannabis produced significantly greater subjective drug effects, cognitive, psychomotor impairment, and higher blood THC concentrations than the same doses of smoked cannabis”.

Is it healthier to vape?

Vaporizing cannabis can be arguably healthier than traditional smoking methods because the vaping process occurs at relatively low temperatures. When smoking cannabis, we create a combustion reaction that can release harmful tar and carcinogens – even when no tobacco is present.

However, more long-term research is still needed on the effects of vaporization cannabis as vaping is still so new to the market and the investigation into vaping related illnesses will continue. At this present moment a likely cause includes the cutting agents like vitamin E acetate and other additives, flavourings, and generally poor-quality counterfeit products – making it essential to buy cartridges on the legal market.

Pros and Cons?



Easy to use

Partly disposable

Portable, discrete, Less smell

More research still must be done

Lesser expensive option to try

Can get expensive if you vape regularly and heavily

Produces vape not smoke

What to consider when picking a vape?

While there might be exceptions, cartridges (the vessels holding the cannabis extracts) can largely be categorized as high or low quality depending on many factors such as (but not limited to):

Typically, low-quality cartridges:

  • They are made of plastic (terpenes can penetrate plastic, and plastic can potentially leach chemicals from the oil),
  • Have poor-quality or ill-fitting O-rings that leak; and
  • Have pre-moistened wicks primed with glycerin or propylene glycol that can cause allergic reactions in some people.
  • Has ingredients like:

High-quality cartridges typically:

  • Products made of premium materials, such as glass, metal, and ceramic.
  • Have properly sized O-rings; and
  • Have sealed joints that prevent contact between the air and cartridge contents.
  • Has ingredients like:

How do Vaporizer Pens Work?

When you inhale or press the button that activates the vape, that triggers the atomizer. The atomizer heats up the oil which subsequently produces the vapor. All that you got to do is inhale through the mouthpiece.


How to Use a Vape Pen

1.     Step 1. Select your Pen & Cartridge

First things first, select your cartridge. For the sake of safety and your health. It is in your interest to only buy from the legal market and trusted manufacturers.

2.     Step 2. Insert the Cartridge

Fairly self-explanatory, but next you will want to insert the cartridge. Many will slide in with minimal effort on your part (like the PAX), while others correspond with a specific type of threading. (most common is a 510). It is always best to understand the gear you have before trying to buy and insert a pod. Your local budtender should be able to help you out if you are unsure of which cartridges/pods to purchase.

3.     Step 3. Activate the Vape

Vapes typically activate in one of two different ways. Either you press a button multiple times that initiates the heating mechanism, or you simply inhale and enjoy.

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