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Volta: Battery-Powered Portable by VaporGenie

Discussion in 'Portable Vaporizers' started by VaporGenie, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. VaporGenie

    VaporGenie Well-Known Member Manufacturer

    Messages:
    28
    Hello FC

    VaporGenie has launched a new battery-powered portable vaporizer: the Volta.

    The Volta has a wood/metal/plastic construction, with almost no plastic. The Volta has manual temperature control, achieved with a pushbutton switch.The Volta uses powerful, high-energy LiFePO batteries, so you get lots of vapor from a single battery.

    Product listing, on VG website:
    http://www.vaporgenie.com/volta-vaporizer

    Intro video:


    I'm available to answer questions about the Volta vaporizer.

    dan





    Product Description:
    The VaporGenie Volta™ is a battery powered vaporizer manufactured in the USA by VaporGenie. The Volta ™ has a powerful LiFePO battery that provides power to a heating chamber. Herbs in the chamber are heated to vaporization temperature in seconds.
    Construction:
    The Volta ™ body is made of waxed maple wood. Electrical contacts and switch are bronze. Cover window is borosilicate glass and has a rare earth magnet attachment. Screws, battery holder and spring are stainless steel. LED indicator circuit is potted in silicone rubber and is lead-free. Battery caps are silicone.
    Battery is an 18650-size lithium-iron phosphate (LiFePO) battery. It must be charged with a LiFePO charger (do NOT use a Lithium-ION battery charger; doing so can cause fire!). Battery is rated for at least 300 charge-discharge cycles.
    Whats In the Box:
    1 Volta vaporizer (with mouthpiece)
    2 18650 LiFePO batteries (these are high quality batteries from Tenergy)
    2 silicone battery caps
    1 two-battery LiFePO charger
    Features:
    18650 LiFePO battery delivers over 200 watt-minutes of energy to heating chamber (about 8 minutes of power). Volta provides up to 25-35 draws from a single battery charge. By comparison, the MFLB delivers only about 90 watt-minutes.
    Spring-loaded electrical switch is comfortable to use and provides precise heat control.
    Magnetically-retained window does not rotate, so it cannot spill in your pocket.
    LED battery indicator shows when battery needs to be recharged (turns RED).
    Borosilicate glass window.
    All parts are user-replaceable. If the body becomes worn-out or damaged, just replace it.
    Replacement parts are available at the VaporGenie.com website. All screws are T-7 Torx drive.
    Maintenance:
    It is necessary to occasionally clean your Volta. Liquid cleaners (soapy water, alcohol) can be used on the glass window. Do not use liquids to clean wood parts. Heating chamber can be cleaned by brushing. Flicking the heating element (corrugated metal foil) is helpful for cleaning.
    LiFePO batteries are damaged by complete discharge. So do not discharge the battery all the way. The LED indicator turns RED when a battery is about 95% discharged. Stop using (and recharge) a battery when the LED indicator turns RED.
    Keep silicone battery caps on batteries at all times! Battery can dangerously short-circuit if it touches a metallic object (like keys in your pocket!).
    Warnings:
    Only use a LiFePO charger to recharge batteries. Do not use a lithium-Ion charger. A lithium-Ion charger can cause a LiFePO battery to leak or explode.
    Only use a LiFePO battery in the Volta. Do not use a lithium-Ion battery. A lithium-Ion battery can leak or explode if used in the Volta. All Volta LiFePO batteries have a VG sticker, so just use batteries with the VG sticker and there wont be any problems.
    Always keep silicone caps on the batteries, charged or uncharged.
    How to Use the VaporGenie Volta Vaporizer
    1) Fill bowl area about 1/4-1/2 full with shredded herbs. Do not completely fill bowl.
    2) Orient Volta so that the glass window is vertical, and herbs are resting on top of metal heating element (not resting on the wood).
    3) Press and hold switch. LED light will turn GREEN, which indicates that heating element is getting hot.
    4) Shake so that herbs are moving around and heat is uniform. Shake every few seconds while holding switch. It will take about 10-20 seconds for chamber to heat to vaporization temperature. When you see vapor fog collect inside the chamber, its time to take a draw.
    Do not inhale while the chamber is heating. This will prevent the chamber from heating to vaporization temperature, unless you inhale VERY slowly. Some people like to do this, but we do not recommend it.
    Using the Volta is an alternating process: heat for several seconds then inhale, heat then inhale.
    Keep an eye on the LED battery indicator. When the indicator turns RED, stop using the battery. A fully-charged battery will provide about 8 minutes of power.
    The Volta has a wood/metal/glass construction
     
  2. Pickz

    Pickz VXNails have landed!!!

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    Wow very interesting! I'm not in the market at the moment, but this will definitely be up there on my list. That battery is truly impressive! $120 seems very fair too. It will be interesting to see the reviews that I'm sure will flood in as VG is very popular.

    Edit: Quick question: Does it flash red on its own (once or a few times even) when it gets to that 95% discharge point or do you always have to push the button to check?
     
  3. Breathemetal

    Breathemetal Well-Known Member

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    Looks snazzy, but I dont see it replacing my MFLB.
    I like the "raw" open design.
    And the more powerful battery is nice as well.

    Looks cool! Good job!
     
  4. RUDE BOY

    RUDE BOY Space is the Place

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    2,581
    Thanks for the video and info Dan . I'm already waiting on the mail person to show up with my Volta .
    :tup:
     
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  5. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    I received mine yesterday and I expect to get my camera back from repairs today, so I'll try to get some photos up.

    I understand the inclination to think this is just a variation on the MFLB, but really the resemblance is superficial. They both are made from wood and use an unwrapped battery to power a conduction heater on demand. They both have a transparent cover allowing you to view the heating chamber. That's about it, really. It is a pocket portable but it is not really a stealth device because it is nearly twice as big as the MFLB.

    I won't use it until I've done portraits. After that, some initial impressions but I won't give a detailed review until I've used it for a while.
     
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  6. RUDE BOY

    RUDE BOY Space is the Place

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    Cool Pakalolo . My tracking info's not telling me anything except that it was accepted on Saturday ,Hope it's in my hands soon . Enjoy the new tool/toy . :peace:
     
  7. stickstones

    stickstones Wasted Staff Member

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    glad you have this, Paka...can't wait to hear your impressions!
     
  8. lwien

    lwien Well-Known Member

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    I think the resemblance is more than just superficial, paka. The way it operates is very MFLB like. Insert battery. Rather than hold battery in for use, you push a switch next to it, but the idea is the same, that is, it only heats up when battery is engaged and turns off between hits. There is a trench, like the MFLB that works purely on conduction. There is a transparent lid over the trench that must be taken off (slide off to the side on the MFLB) to fill trench, etc etc.

    To me, it is very much MFLB like, but........................VG has taken the time to identify the potential weaknesses of the MFLB and improved up on it, such as the way the LED works and it's visibility, better battery (stronger and longer charge), a trench that is more resistant to damage, a glass cover rather than acrylic, etc etc. I like it.

    I wonder if the learning curve is as steep for many of us. Probably will be considering that both vapes operate basically the same way.

    What I really like though is to see such an improvement on an existing design idea. An evolution, if you will as we have seen from the log vape manufacturers over the Eterra. Well done VG.



    Now for the reviews........
     
  9. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    Yes, and you need to shake them both too, I forgot that part. What I was really trying to get across is that at first sight people will tend to think that it's a head-to-head competitor with the LB, but I don't believe it is. Basically, your description and mine aren't much different, we just have slightly different views of what superficial means. By your definition, the FV and the MFLB have a resemblance that is more than superficial. They both have on-demand power that heats a screen. There is a transparent top that must be removed to load the device. You can even use the same stems.

    I don't think the learning curve will resemble the MFLB at all. This is more like the recommended starting technique for the FV: hold the power on until you get vapour, then hit. Since you don't draw on it like the LB, the technique is really just a matter of learning how long to keep the power on. I'm curious if it reaches combustion. I expect it will, especially if you don't shake it, but I don't know how long that takes.

    You're absolutely right that it is inspired by a desire to improve on the MFLB.
     
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  10. stickstones

    stickstones Wasted Staff Member

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    Pak...how does the Volta battery compare to the new mflb batts?
     
  11. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    They're 18650s, like you use in your FV, so they're much bigger. In fact if you peel your FV S1 3.2V batteries, you could use them in the Volta because they are LiFePO4. You cannot must not do this with the S2 3.7V batteries.

    I don't know yet how the battery life compares. Based on Dan's description, the Volta takes a lot longer to warm up, but it has way more power available.
     
  12. stickstones

    stickstones Wasted Staff Member

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    8,127
    ok. my main interest is because the new batts really make the mflb functional for me and I know the batts on this were considered an improvement. So I'm just wondering if the mflb has already caught up with the competition in the battery department.
     
  13. lwien

    lwien Well-Known Member

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    Yeah. The other thing I'd like to know about the batts is if they operate in the same way. One of the variables in regards to the MFLB that I didn't like, is that the heat up time varied with the charge of the battery. A fully charged battery would heat up MUCH faster than a partially discharged battery. It varied so much with the amount of charge left, that it was a variable that constantly needed to be monitored. Do lithium's discharge in the same way?
     
  14. stickstones

    stickstones Wasted Staff Member

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    8,127
    I think the new batts cured this. They die in seconds instead of leading you along for a trench.
     
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  15. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    I'll pay attention to these points. lwien, the new MFLB batteries have a flatter discharge curve and don't show as much variation as you might have experienced. I expect there will be some variation with the Volta as the battery gets depleted. Given the way it works, it will be much easier to quantify this than it is for the LB because the variable of pulling on it is not there.
     
  16. stickstones

    stickstones Wasted Staff Member

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    are you saying this thing is not draw speed dependent? Does that mean they restricted it like in the Solo?
     
  17. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    :lol: Busted! You didn't watch the video!

    No, it isn't draw speed dependent because you don't hit it with the power on. You heat it up and watch for vapour, then you hit it. Look at the heater screen and think about how it could heat the load. This had me puzzled from the start and I am surprised that no one ever asked about this (doubly surprised I didn't). The answer is that you hold the box with the trench vertical while it heats, then horizontal while you hit it. The draw itself is pretty free-flowing and a dry hit on a virgin box is tasteless. You won't be hitting this thing native much, by the way. It just isn't suited to it.
     
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  18. Vapodudule

    Vapodudule Well-Known Member

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    heart says yes Wallet says no.
     
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  19. stickstones

    stickstones Wasted Staff Member

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    you know...I don't watch many vids here because the sound would give me away. thanks for typing out what I could have heard!

    EDIT: okay...just watched it without volume. that is truly a unique design! I'll be very interested to hear how you like the taste and duff.
     
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  20. OF

    OF Well-Known Member

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    11,731
    Location:
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    Dan,

    Very nice, but unfortunately due to a foreseeable and avoidable problem I won't be able to enjoy this.

    Once again, folks with normal color vision (the majority) have decided to use cute little red/green LEDs that some of us can't see. In this case, for a CRITICAL function that will wreck the battery? This handicap is almost exclusively male and is about as common as being left handed (1/8 people). Obviously, none of us are on your staff, any your color vision is normal.

    But think about how many left handed guys you know, that's about the same number of the population that will have some level of trouble seeing the difference between red and green. HA redesigned their unit to correct this very problem, and there it was a convenience thing (you couldn't tell when the unit had made temperature), it didn't destroy stuff.

    Not all of us are the same of course, and sometimes (under the right conditions) it's possible to tell the difference by careful inspection (like on most of the battery chargers I own), but it's a known debilitating handicap problem that could have been easily avoided by different choices on your part.

    You obviously don't need my business (and you get plenty of it anyway on you other excellent products) so the guy who loses out here is me.....and those that don't catch this detail in time. The penalty for it is costly and prohibitive to me....I'm passing.

    Good luck with your new product.

    OF
     
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  21. Stu

    Stu Maconheiro Staff Member

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    Is it just me, or does it seem like it would be very easy to accidentally 'load' some herb on the wrong side of the heating element (corrugated metal foil)? If this happens, is it ok to use that way, or should the area between the walls of the chamber and the heating element always be kept clear?

    :peace:
     
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  22. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    The heater is corrugated and inevitably some material will get between the screen and the walls of the trench. This will not be a serious problem unless you're OCD, which I am to a mild degree. The heater is flexible and won't damage if you pull it away from the walls to clean, though. If that doesn't work to your satisfaction, you can take it apart. I think this requires removing only two of the screws. I'll know more once I take mine apart.
     
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  23. VaporGenie

    VaporGenie Well-Known Member Manufacturer

    Messages:
    28
    Here are answers to your questions:

    1) Does it flash red on its own (once or a few times even) when it gets to that 95% discharge point or do you always have to push the button to check?

    The button must be pushed to check. Unless the button is pushed, the battery is not electrically connected to the indicator.

    2) Battery discharge characteristics?

    Here are measurements of the 18650 LiFePO battery discharge-voltage curve in the Volta. LiFePO batteries have a pretty flat discharge curve. Only the last minute or so has a substantial drop in voltage.

    Minutes Voltage
    1 ..........2.91
    2 ..........2.91
    3 ..........2.91
    4 ..........2.91
    5 ..........2.89
    6 ..........2.84
    7 ..........2.72
    7.5 .......2.60
    8 ..........2.28
    8.25 ......2.00


    Minutes Voltage
    1 ..........2.94
    2 ..........2.96
    3 ..........2.96
    4 ..........2.96
    5 ..........2.94
    6 ..........2.92
    7 ..........2.84
    8 ..........2.56
    8.5 ........2.00


    3) What about color blind people?

    OF, I hear you, I really do. We DID discuss this problem. The issue is that we need to have an LED that operates a low voltages, because the battery is dropping in voltage fast at that point (red in the volta), and an LED that works at 2.5-3v (green). Blue LEDs require substantially larger voltages, so those are not usable. So we are left with red and green, and yellow. The space available for the circuit is small, so it requires an LED pair in a package, and we could not find a suitable surface-mount, small 2-LED package with yellow. With the large number of design and manufacturing challenges in the Volta project, the color blindness issue was one we decided to save for later. However, this is an aspect of the Volta that can easily be improved in the future, and we intend to do so. Can you offer us some suggestions about what we can do here? SHould we try to find a yellow-red LED? Yellow-green? What color combination would be best? Remember we cannot use blue because blue LEDs require 3.5v typically, and we only have 2.5-2.6V available.


    4) Heat-up time compared to MFLB?

    In our experience, the Volta heats up substantially faster, and achieves higher temperatures than the MFLB. You can burn or char with the Volta. We measured the power dissipation (in the heating element) in the MFLB and Volta. The MFLB power dissipation was about 8-9 watts. The Volta power dissipation was about 25 watts. The Volta chamber is a little larger, so the heat is spread over a larger area. The Volta gets hotter, more quickly. This was one of the issues with the MFLB we wanted to improve upon. We noticed some people complain about an inability of the MFLB to reach high enough temps, especially in non-ideal conditions (wet herbs, cold ambient temps).

    Energy delivered to load calculations:
    we measured the amount of energy delivered to the heating element (excluding energy dissipated in the battery). This is what we got, for a single full battery charge:

    MFLB AA NIMH full battery:
    Actual energy delivered to MFLB chamber=88 watt-minutes

    Volta 18650 LiFePO full battery:
    Actual energy delivered to Volta chamber=202 watt-minutes

    In our experience, this means that the Volta will provide quite a bit more vapor per charged battery.

    5) Herb falling behind heating element?
    Herbs that fall behind the heating element will also be vaporized in that space during vaporization. Flicking the heating element will dislodge them. So its not a problem if particles of herbs fall between the heating element and wood.

    hi pakololo

    You said:
    "The heater is flexible and won't damage if you pull it away from the walls to clean, though. If that doesn't work to your satisfaction, you can take it apart. I think this requires removing only two of the screws. I'll know more once I take mine apart."

    We do not recommend taking the Volta apart for cleaning. Its not necessary, and the screw holes will become loosened/reamed out if the Volta is taken apart and reassembled several times.

    Removing the heating element requires removing more than just the two screws on the bottom. You also have to remove the battery holder clip (4 screws), and probably the screw that holds the switch. And that means complete disassembly. This should not be done for normal cleaning.

    The best way to clean the heating element is to flick it with the fingers. You can also hold the button down with the window off. This will burn off material from the heating element. You could say that the heating element is "self-cleaning" in this way. A brush can be used to clean out the heating chamber. We will be developing a custom stainless steel brush for this purpose (if the Volta is a successful product).

    The disassembly aspect is intended for parts replacement. Say for example the Volta is dropped in a puddle of beer, or becomes soaked in rain or something on a camping trip, and the wood cracks or becomes disgusting. In this case, not all is lost. The wood body can simply be replaced. We're not sure how much replacement wood bodies will cost, but I think it will be about $15 or so.
     
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  24. pakalolo

    pakalolo RoboMod v3.17 (ticking) Staff Member

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    I just want to add that the Volta is designed such that the LED can easily be swapped for a different one once they become available. It's the same two screws you'd remove to take out the heater. The LED is mounted in the little wooden block that also secures the heating element.

    I guess when I said it takes a lot longer to warm up, what I should have said is that you hold the power on a lot longer before you hit it. I just did a quick test and after literally two seconds, you would not want to touch the heating element.

    Edit: Oops, typing while you posted. I'd just reached those conclusions having actually removed the two screws. It's obvious you also have to remove the battery holder, and when I was putting the screws back I realized the danger of reaming out the holes. I assume the warranty wouldn't cover that.

    I will be taking mine apart for photos just the same.
     
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  25. Tweek

    Tweek Well-Known Member

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    The postman/woman always rings twice...and comes bearing gifts :spliff:

    [​IMG]

    Thanks again Dan & the team at VG! Just patiently waiting for my batteries to charge :smug:
     

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