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Vape Hardware

Vape-Jet Hardware Partner: iKrusher

In a rapidly growing market like the vaping industry, it is essential to dial in filling processes to ensure quality user experiences every time. That may sound daunting, but that’s why the Vape-Jet crew is always looking for ways to provide advanced cartridge-filling solutions for customers through our Partner Program. Our newest partner, iKrusher, expands our one-stop shop for customer success even more, certifying an extensive selection of compatible products that will work seamlessly with your Vape-Jet fully automatic cartridge-filling machine.  

Read on to see how combing iKrusher’s innovative hardware combined with our vape cart filling expertise offers customers a complete turnkey solution for their vaping needs:  

Vape-Jet automatic filling machine filling the iKrusher Uzo disposable hardware.
Vape-Jet automatic filling machine filling the iKrusher Uzo disposable hardware.

iKrusher at a Glance  

Engineered out of California since 2017, iKrusher is a widely trusted vape hardware leader. With over 1,500 brand associations, iKrusher provides millions of vape users with reliable, cutting-edge products, including disposables, vaporizers, pods, batteries, and vaping accessories. With a dual base in the US and China to conduct in-depth research and development on atomization technology, iKrusher is committed to local lab testing to ensure that their products offer the best taste for oils and concentrates.   

With numerous technical patents and revolutionary products on the market, iKrusher continues to lead the trend in vaping experiences. They certainly haven’t shied away from this role either, opening multiple fulfillment distribution centers across the US to stay on top of their supply chain and provide reliable distribution. iKrusher’s wide network also provides local lab testing for oils and concentrates to design premium vaping experiences.  

iKrusher Technology  

OMNI 

If you couldn’t already tell, at Vape-Jet, we’re huge fans of innovation. As the largest custom OEM and ODM vaporizer provider in the US, iKrusher is all-in on creating new, custom vaporizer technologies. OMNI intelligent control technology is an excellent example of their dedication to high-performance vaping, enabling pure, multi-viscosity vaping experiences. With increased battery performance and superior flavor profiles thanks to the OMNI App and OMNI Smart Hub, iKrusher’s vaping technology has created a new industry standard. 

iKonic Ceramic Coil 

Utilizing a porous ceramic material, the iKonic coil locks in oils for better taste and purity, maximizing each draw for users. 

Vape-Jet x iKrusher: Partnership Benefits  

  • Rapid Deployment — leverage Vape-Jet and iKrusher’s in-house R&D teams for expedited hardware prototyping, ensuring repeatable vape cartridge-filling experiences.  
  • Verified Compatibility — pretested hardware means you don’t have to waste time testing different hardware or money using non-optimized components.  
  • Custom-Built Hardware Profiles — pre-configured hardware profiles are available for installation on your new Vape-Jet filling machine, so you can start no-waste filling right away.  
Vape-Jet 4.0 | The Most Advanced Fully-Automatic Vape Cartridge Filling Machine - Click to Learn More

Reliably Compatible Hardware  

Fill with confidence using qualified Vape-Jet Partners in conjunction with your Vape-Jet filling machine. Remember: all of our partners and products are thoroughly vetted by our crew and extensively QA-tested in the field by our customers.  

 Disposables  

iKrusher disposable vapes handle any viscosity: distillate, concentrates, or live resin. All disposables use compliant, durable, and sustainable materials while boasting long battery life and anti-clogging, zero-leak tanks. 

Cartridges  

iKrusher cartridges use award-winning, proprietary designed 510 thread cartridges engineered for even oil vaporization, maximizing consumption. iKrusher’s durable 510 oil cartridges are paired with ceramic quartz heating technology to provide superior taste and quality.   

Note: Not all hardware listed above is compatible with our Squish-o-Matic 1000 capping machine. For more detailed information on compatibility please reach out to our crew for more info. 

Vape-Jet automatic filling machine filling the iKrusher Uzo disposable hardware.
Vape-Jet automatic filling machine filling the iKrusher Uzo disposable hardware.

Tested in the Field 

The best part about our hardware partnership with iKrusher is that the results speak for themselves. Customers are already enjoying the synergy of Vape-Jet x iKrusher, including Joe Fabrizio, Lab Manager and Owner of Soil to Oil Montana.  

So far, Joe’s team has filled the Tik Pro Mini, 0.5mL disposable with their Jet Fueler semi-automatic vape cart filler, and they’ve had loads of success. Asked if he would recommend using Vape-Jet cart filling technology with iKrusher hardware, Joe says, “Absolutely! I’ve been filling carts for about 7 years. I’ve used dozens of different carts, all while filling by hand with a metered syringe. The Tik Pro is, by far, the most reliable vape I have ever used. It has an extremely low fail rate, rarely leaks or clogs, and the vape experience is exactly what I’ve been looking for. The mellow temperature keeps the terpenes preserved, yet it still puffs clouds with ease. Filling with the Jet Fueler ensures every vape is filled exactly the same with precise temperature controls and temperature settings. Low temp cart filling is easily achieved with the use of Nitrogen head pressure.” 

Or ask Jesse from Waypoint Processing, who says, “Every [iKrusher] product is packaged precisely making it easy to replicate and allows the Vape-Jet to quickly move from cart to cart. Vape-Jet support has been fantastic in dialing in so many different hardware types and an ever-changing product list with different concentrate types. Truly an amazing product is going into an amazing machine.” 

Let’s Get Started

We designed our Vape-Jet Partner Program to provide customers with the best possible vape cartridge-filling experience. Our partnership with iKrusher expands our one-stop shop, certifying an extensive selection of compatible products that will work seamlessly with your Vape-Jet fully automatic cartridge-filling machine. Take advantage of custom-built hardware profiles, verified compatibility, and pre-tested hardware so you can fill vape cartridges with confidence.   

If you want to become a Vape-Jet success story, reach out to our crew, and we’ll find the best solution for your business.   

Check out these success stories:   

While you’re at it, don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube

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Uncategorized Vape-Jet

Filling Smarter: The Do’s and Don’ts of Vape-Jet Operation 

Vape-Jet specializes in automated vape-cart filling machines specifically designed for the cannabis industry. Our advanced technology ensures efficient, reliable, and precise filling with various cannabis extracts. In this blog post, we will go over Do’s and Don’ts for the successful operation of a Vape-Jet fully-automatic vape cartridge filling machine. The purpose of this blog post is to help our customers get the most out of their machine operation. By following these tips, you can ensure that your machine operates smoothly and efficiently, and that you get the best possible results. 

Vape-Jet 4.0 | The Most Advanced Fully-Automatic Vape Cartridge Filling Machine - Click to Learn More

The Do’s of Vape-Jet Operation 

1. Review the Vape-Jet 4.0 user manual. 

Before you start using your Vape-Jet fully-automatic vape cartridge filling machine, it’s important to review the user manual. This will give you a better understanding of how the machine works, and how to operate it safely and effectively. 

2. Use the recommended settings. 

Different cannabis extracts require different settings to achieve the best results. Make sure to use the recommended settings for each extract to ensure that you get the best possible results. Check out this comprehensive guide from our HelpDesk. It’s important to note that the recommended settings will vary based on the style of pump included in your machine. 

3. Regularly clean and maintain the machine. 

To keep your Vape-Jet running smoothly, it’s important to clean and maintain it regularly. This will help prevent clogs and malfunctions, as well as prevent cross-contamination between strains and oil types. All of our filling machines come with a clean in place SOP built into the software. It is fully automated, only takes 10-20 minutes and requires no disassembly. 

4. Use high-quality cannabis extracts to ensure high-quality results. 

The quality of the cannabis extract you use can have a big impact on the performance of your Vape-Jet fully-automatic vape cartridge filling machine. Make sure to use high-quality, consistently produced extracts to ensure the most reliable results. 

5. Never let your operator fly solo. 

If you encounter any issues or errors while using your Vape-Jet machine, don’t hesitate to contact Vape-Jet’s support team via the Help Desk. We can help you troubleshoot the issue and get your machine back up and running as quickly as possible. 

Once you receive your new machine, you will use the Help Desk for all questions and requests moving forward. Please note that your points of contact from the sales process do not have remote machine access or the technical insight required to provide product support. 

Learn more about Vape-Jet support.
Click to learn more about Vape-Jet product support.

The Don’ts of Vape-Jet Operation 

1. Don’t power on your new machine without Vape-Jet support. 

Before you turn on your new filling machine for the first time, it’s important to schedule a remote training session with Vape-Jet product support. This will help ensure that you know how to operate the machine safely and effectively. 

2. Don’t begin filling without configuration and calibration. 

Before you start producing vape cartridges, it’s important to properly configure and calibrate your Vape-Jet fully-automatic vape cartridge filling machine. This will help ensure that you get the best possible results. 

Initial needle and physical camera calibration will happen at installation with a remote support technician. The individual hardware configuration process includes software adjustments made to camera, height, speed, etc. This can be done during a consultation support call and saved as a configuration profile for later use. 

3. Don’t underestimate the importance of heating. 

To ensure the best possible results, it’s important to properly pre-heat the oil and configure the three machine heaters based on Vape-Jet recommended temperatures before initiating filling. Find our recommended heat settings in this comprehensive guide from our HelpDesk. If you want to hot swap your reservoirs to save time between batches, check out our Drop Tank reservoir pre-heating accessory. 

4. Don’t physically interfere with the machine while in operation. 

During the filling process, it’s crucial not to interfere with the machine. This includes not moving the hardware during dispense to correct the alignment, and not putting your hands inside the machine while in motion. If operation needs to be stopped immediately, operators can find a “stop” button on the user interface built into the front of the machine.  

Bonus Don’t: Don’t use the physical emergency stop button on the front of the machine unless there is a true emergency such as evacuation due to fire. 

5. Don’t forget to follow “first in, last out.” 

When connecting and disconnecting the reservoir to the fluid path and Nitrogen supply, it’s important to follow the “first in, last out order of operations.” If done out of order, heated oil will leak out of the upper fluid path, through the heat box and onto the dispensing platform below. This can waste valuable oil, damage your machine, and pose a safety hazard to operators. 

Connecting Reservoir: 

  • Place Reservoir in Holder 
  • Connect Fluid Path to Reservoir 
  • Connect Power Cable 
  • Connect Nitrogen Line 

Disconnecting Reservoir: 

  • Disconnect Nitrogen Pressure 
  • Toggle Reservoir Heater Off 
  • Disconnect CPC Power Adapter 
  • Disconnect Fluid Path 
  • Remove Reservoir from Holder 
Learn more about the Vape-Jet fully-automatic filling machine.
Click to learn more about the Vape-Jet fully-automatic filling machine.

Fill Smarter with Vape-Jet 

Operating a Vape-Jet fully-automatic vape cartridge filling machine requires attention to detail and adherence to best practices. By following the do’s and don’ts outlined in this blog post, you can ensure that your machine operates smoothly and efficiently, and that you get the best possible results. Remember to review the user manual, use recommended settings, clean and maintain the machine, use high-quality extracts, and contact support when needed. By following these tips, you can maximize the potential of your Vape-Jet filling machine and truly “Fill Smarter”. 

Think Automation is a Thing of the Future? 

This article was developed by an AI copywriter. The future is now, so join the revolution or risk getting stuck in the past. If you’re ready to integrate automation into your workflow reach out to our crew with your questions to see what Vape-Jet automation solutions can do for you.  

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube

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Uncategorized

ElevatedRX: Customer Feature

Proudly cultivating, extracting, and manufacturing from the heart of New Mexico, ElevatedRx is a licensed cannabis extraction and manufacturing company raising the bar for premium-quality cannabis products. Guided by a mission to provide superior edibles, wax, and distillate for consumers, the team at ElevatedRx won the “Best Cart” award with Peaches and Dream at the Essie Awards and continues to focus on delivering products with the highest quality, purity, and potency.

With this mission in mind, the next step for ElevatedRx was to ensure every touchpoint in their process was handled with the same care as extraction. When your customers and mission demand perfection, every cartridge fill counts. That’s why the ElevatedRx team reached out to the Vape Jet crew and how they got started with the Jet Fueler.   

In this customer feature, we spoke with Bobby and Danny who work in the lab at ElevatedRx to see how they have implemented our semi-automatic vape cartridge-filling machine and what tips they would like to pass on to other folks in the cannabis industry looking to elevate their products.  

‘In the Beginning’: Before the Jet Fueler 

In the beginning, there was nothing…   

Well, not really. In the beginning, there was hand-filling. Bobby and Danny recall the painstaking process of filling distillate by hand (with a syringe gun) the same way many of us remember hard times—lots of character-building, not too much fun.  

Filling five vape cartridges at a time by hand meant having to cap each of the cartridges before filling more to ensure oil didn’t discolor in the cartridge. It also required a lot of labor, wasn’t fast by any means, and introduced variables that invite cartridge failures.   

Before the Jet Fueler, ElevatedRx filled about 500 vape cartridges a day with four to five employees dedicated to the task for eight hours each.  

‘Let There Be Light!’: Optimizing Throughput with the Jet Fueler

Switching to the Jet Fueler changed the game, Bobby and Danny agree. “[The Jet Fueler is] a lot more consistent with every single cartridge,” Bobby says. “It gives you very consistent carts, and it’s a lot cleaner too. I hate having sticky hands and sticky clothes.”  

Having a Jet Fueler also gave a significant boost to ElevatedRx’s QA process. Before, there simply wasn’t time to weigh vape cartridges in the thorough way they do things now, Bobby and Danny say. In other words, having a semi-automatic vape cart filler allows them to focus on refining their processes rather than focusing purely on filling.  

Now, ElevatedRx is filling much more volume, allowing them to pull more samples for QA to ensure repeatable quality fills. The fills have been a lot more consistent during spot checks, too, Danny says.  

After the Jet Fueler, ElevatedRx can fill up to 2,000 vape cartridges a day with a single employee filling and one capping. That’s 1,500 more cartridges, quality-filled, and 50-60% less labor! They also switched from steel vape cartridge caps to ceramic AVD cartridges, which have resolved previous capping issues and made the cartridge-filling process much more efficient.  

Jet Fueler Love: Tips, Tricks, and Product Support 

Bobby and Danny’s favorite feature of the Jet Fueler? The heating elements. “The heating elements are really good. Having three separate heaters for the reservoir, needle, and line is very smart and prevents the degradation of your oil from excessive heat.” 

Another great part about working with Vape-Jet is the industry-leading support team. “I’ve had nothing but good experiences. [The support team has] always been there for us any time we need anything. I’ve never encountered someone where I’ve felt like they were having a ‘bad day.’ They have always been chipper, nice, and able to help us out fairly promptly.”  

Asked whether they had any tips and tricks for the Jet Fueler, Bobby and Danny identify a couple of items:  

  1. Work with Vape-Jet support to find the perfect target for each cartridge and oil type to ensure consistency.  
  2. Use a filter! “We just use a coffee filter, but it fits perfectly on top of the reservoir. I recommend a filter so nothing gets into the reservoir or valve.”  

Unparalleled Cartridge-Filling Technology + Vape-Jet Support = 10/10

How likely are you to recommend Vape-Jet? “100%—10,” Bobby and Danny agree, “especially the price point compared to other machines. The Jet Fueler is super, super on point compared to anything else so far.”   

At Vape-Jet, we’re always looking at how we can cultivate premium experiences for vape cartridge fillers and end users alike. ElevatedRx is a great example of how you can grow your brand, decrease labor and product loss costs, and establish yourself as a quality solution provider by optimizing your vape cartridge-filling workflow.   

What’s next for ElevatedRx? The sky is the limit. With a new Vape-Jet fully-automatic cart filler in-house, we see more award-winning fills on the horizon. In fact, ElevatedRx just launched a disposable vape cartridge made possible by their Vape-Jet and Jet Fueler cart-filling machines. So, make sure to stay tuned to ElevatedRx to see what they have in store for 2023!  

In the meantime, if you want to become another success story, reach out to our crew and we’ll find the best solution for your business.   

Like our customer features? Check out these other success stories:   

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: FacebookInstagramLinkedInTwitter and YouTube

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Uncategorized

101: Types of Cannabis Vape Cartridge Filling Machines

The Cannabis Industry’s Need for Vape Cartridge Filling Machines

As consumer behaviors continue to shift sales away from traditional categories such as flower and tinctures, and towards packaged products such as vapes, pre-rolls and edibles it’s clear that consumers are looking for more portable and convenient recreational products. Vapes in particular are popular for their portability and ease of use, reflected by sales more than doubling from $1 billion in 2018 to $2.8 billion as of November 2022

To sustain this growth in popularity without sacrificing quality, many producers are investing in automated filling machines. If you are new to the world of vape cartridge and device filling equipment, join us as we break down the different types of filling machines along with their advantages, disadvantages, and the best use cases for each. 

Manual Cannabis Vape Cartridge Filling Machines and Equipment

Manual vape cartridge and device filling machines are the simplest type of filling machines. They are operated by hand with tools such as syringes and heaters, and the operator is responsible for the entire filling process. These machines are inexpensive and easy to use, making them a good choice for small-scale operations. However, they are not suitable for large-scale production due to their slow production speed and reliance on manual labor.  

Examples of manual filling machines: 

  • Manual syringe 
  • Handheld repeater syringe 
  • Multi-shot style hand dispensers 

Advantages of using manual filling machines: 

  • Lowest equipment cost 
  • Easy to use 
  • Simple setup 
  • Small physical footprint 

Disadvantages of using manual filling machines: 

  • Highest labor cost 
  • Slowest production speed 
  • Inconsistent fill volume 
  • Operator-dependent 
  • Easy to damage oil with heat 
  • Susceptible to operator error 
  • Syringe lubricant can affect cartridge 
  • Risk of operator injury from manual labor 
  • High maintenance requirements 

Best use cases for manual filling machines: 

  • Small-scale production 
  • Limited budget 
  • Non-technical operators 

Semi-Automatic Cannabis Vape Cartridge Filling Machines

Semi-automatic filling machines such as the Jet Fueler are an intermediate between manual and fully-automatic filling machines. They require some manual operation by lifting the cartridge or device to the needle for dispensation, but they automate the pumping portion of the filling process. These machines are suitable for mid-scale production and offer a good balance between cost and efficiency. 

Example of semi-automatic filling machines: 

  • Automatic recharging repeater syringe systems 
  • Pneumatic systems 
  • Syringe pump systems 

Advantages of using semi-automatic filling machines: 

  • Faster production speed than manual filling machines 
  • More consistent fill volume 
  • More consistent heat application 
  • Lower labor cost than manual filling machines 

Disadvantages of using semi-automatic filling machines: 

  • Higher equipment cost than manual filling machines 
  • More complex than manual filling machines 
  • Not suitable for large-scale production 
  • Operator still has to cap cartridges separately 

Best use cases for semi-automatic filling machines: 

  • Mid-scale production 
  • Low to mid-range budget 
  • Entry level technical operators 

Fully-Automatic Cannabis Vape Cartridge Filling Machines

Fully-automatic filling machines such as the Vape-Jet are the most advanced class of filling machines. They automate and control the pumping, dispensing and heating processes. Some even automate the capping process while others are designed to work with a separate capping machine. These machines offer the highest production capacity and consistency in fill volume. However, they are also the most expensive and may require specialized accessories such as hardware jigs or additional operator training. Despite the cost and additional expenses, in the long term these machines result in the lowest total cost of ownership. 

Example of fully-automatic filling machines: 

  • Robotic assisted recharging repeater syringe systems 
  • Robotic assisted pneumatic systems 
  • Robotic assisted syringe pump systems 

Advantages of using fully-automatic filling machines 

  • Lowest labor cost 
  • Highest production capacity 
  • Consistent and accurate fill volume 
  • Flexibility in handling a wide range of fill volumes and viscosities 
  • Increased reliability with minimal room for operator error 
  • Limited exposure to environmental contaminants 
  • Operator can multitask during filling process 

Disadvantages of using fully-automatic filling machines 

  • Highest equipment cost 
  • Largest physical footprint 
  • Requires additional operator training 

Best use cases for fully-automatic filling machines: 

  • Large-scale production 
  • Mid to high-range budget 
  • Experienced technical operators 

What Else to Consider When Shopping for a Cartridge Filling Machine

The right filling machine can help to increase production efficiency, reduce waste, and ensure consistent and accurate fill volumes. Choosing the right machine will depend primarily on your production volume and available budget, but we encourage you to consider a few other key factors: 

Adaptability  

Some fully-automatic filling machines lock you into a limited number of cartridge and device styles you can fill without investing in physical retooling or additional custom hardware. Look for systems that can adapt to your hardware, not the other way around. 

Product Support 

Complicated filling machines may require more complicated training and repairs. As you vet equipment manufacturers be sure to ask how they provide product support, how long you can expect to wait on replacement parts, or how quickly they can get on site support technicians to your facility should the need arise. 

Data Reporting 

As states continue to pass additional regulations on the cannabis industry, it’s crucial to consider where you can implement data collection in your production process. Some fully-automatic filling machines have data reporting features built in, giving you insight into production trends as well as an additional quality management checkpoint.  

Cleaning Process 

A key part of the cartridge filling process is the cleaning procedure between strains or at the end of the day. Producers new to automated filling equipment often overlook the importance of this feature. Look for machines with an efficient and automated clean in place process to save on time and labor. 

Still not sure what type of filling machine is right for your operation? 

Contact our crew to find out if a Jet Fueler or Vape-Jet would be the right fit for you. Still growing? We offer an upgrade path from our semi-automatic to fully-automatic systems. 

Think Automation is a Thing of the Future?

This article was developed by an AI copywriter. The future is now, so join the revolution or risk getting stuck in the past. If you’re ready to integrate automation into your workflow reach out to our crew with your questions to see what Vape-Jet automation solutions can do for you. 

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube

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Laboratory

Measuring Vape Cartridge Success with N.N. Analytics  

After exploring the reasons why vape cartridges fail in our previous blog post, it’s time to dive into the science of measuring vape cartridge success. Joining us again is Jake Rubenstein, the President and CEO of N.N. Analytics. In this blog, Jake shares his expertise on how Vape-Jet, N.N. Analytics, and other contributing factors ensure your cartridges perform at their best for a premium vaping experience. 

What Leads to a Vape Cartridge Success?  

Before we get into the finer scientific details of vape cartridge success, we should look at the factors that lead to a premium vaping experience. Here are the key elements that contribute to successful vape cartridges we’ve seen at N.N. Analytics:  

  • Ensure your vape cartridge performs the same when full, half-full, or near empty without leaks, clogs, or dry hits. 
  • Correct amount of delivered aerosol—correct standard Aerosol Collected Mass (ACM) between 25 to 60mg/puff in most vaping applications measured under a standard ISO regimen.   
  • Low-Pressure Drop (PD) values—a properly assembled cartridge with an oil that has a matched rheology will not have a high PD value when compared to a control sample.  
  • Lack of leaks through the 510 center-post—minimal device weight loss (DWL) is measured throughout the lifetime of a cartridge that was not captured or measured as Aerosol Collected Mass (ACM).
  • Lack of evaporation through the 510 center-post—minimal device weight loss (DWL) as measured throughout the lifetime of the cartridge that is not captured and measured as Aerosol Collected Mass (ACM). 
  • Lack of leaks into the center post by way of the failure modes identified above. 
  • Lack of leaks through the mouthpiece by way of the failure modes identified above.  
  • The proper delivery of cannabinoids measured in the Aerosol Collected Mass (ACM) without deterioration by way of elevated coil temperatures and a lack of airflow through the cartridge.   

What variables are critical for vape cartridge success?   

  • Choosing reliably vetted hardware with a proven track record and direct relationships with a trusted analytical lab.    
  • Confirming the compatibility between each type of cannabis oil and the hardware you intend to fill.   
  • Standardizing your formulation and enforcing process control throughout your extraction and filling operation to reduce variability in your oil output as measured by standard rheological assessments on a batch-by-batch basis.   
  • Confirming that the batch-to-batch variance does not fall outside of the approved rheological bracket defined for the cartridge-oil combination.   
  • A collaborative effort with open communication between the vape hardware manufacturer, vape filling machine manufacturer, vape testing facility, and you.   
  • The Vape-Jet product support team can tailor your filling temperatures and speeds to your formulation. N.N. Analytics can also develop and confirm with Vape-Jet the correct filling parameters that will support ideal cartridge performance without failure.  

How N.N. Analytics Can Resolve Your Vape Cartridge Failures

N.N. Analytics facilitates the standardization of oil-hardware combinations with characterization testing. Our approach to resolving your vape cartridge failure challenges comes in two phases.    

Phase One: Establishment of Approved Parameters    

Rheology Characterization and Performance Assessment of Solutions for Cartridge Filling—this is where we characterize the oil solutions to understand how they perform in each hardware SKU. In short, this process helps us understand whether known rheology will affect the performance and failure rate of the cartridge part number that is approved for sale.    

Failure Mode and Effects Analysis: Cartridge Performance Assessment (Leakage & Dry Hits)—we use this standard metric to evaluate a new part number in hardware that we haven’t assessed yet. We evaluate stability performance, including device weight loss, pressure drop, and aerosol collected mass. This testing is performed with standard solutions (oils) that are deployed by NN Analytics, meeting the criteria of low, medium, or high viscosity:  

  • Low Viscosity: Akin to rosin formulations or those with terpene additions of greater than 10%  
  • Medium viscosity: Akin to formulations that have a standard number of terpenes and are standard performers – This is our target range for most formulations  
  • High Viscosity: High potency oils with minimal terpene or diluent additions require optimum shear rates of cartridges tuned to high-viscosity oils.   

Phase Two: Continual Evaluation of Approved Ranges    

Stability Studies—used to evaluate the stability performance of a new batch of hardware by ACM/DWL and by delivered cannabinoid concentrations in the ACM.   

Oil Performance Assessment—used to evaluate a new batch of oil manufactured to a specific recipe by rheological assessment and terpene/cannabinoid measurements in the ACM according to the standard (approved) reference sample. 

Standard Measurements We Use at N.N. Analytics 

Device Weight Loss   

Device Weight Loss (DWL) measures the total change in filled mass of oil in a cartridge. This measurement is taken when the vape cartridge is filled and capped at T=0, then monitored throughout the lifetime of the cartridge during testing or stability studies before Aerosol Collected Mass (ACM) measurements are taken. 

Over time, oil may leak or evaporate due to leakage or evaporation from an improper cap seal or airhole feed size that allows atmosphere to enter the vape cartridge by way of the center post or air inlets at the bottom of the cartridge, leading to reduced ACM, evaporation of volatile terpenes, and possible oxidation of cannabinoids. 

DWL and reduced ACM are both causative variables of leakage that causes oil to emit from the 510 thread or air feed holes, which are indicative of a rheological mismatch of the oil viscosity with the hardware, namely:   

  • coil-wicking material porosity    
  • feed hole size    
  • airflow hole size    
  • Improper oil rheology  

Aerosol Performance   

Aerosol collected mass (ACM)—this variable determines the efficiency of the cartridge as a complete unit that will establish a parameter we call “ACM” for the amount of vapor emitted from the cartridge during normal expected vaping conditions.   

ACM can be influenced by many factors and is considered a correlative variable for cartridge performance rather than a causative variable, such as device weight loss (DWL) or pressure drop (PD).  

Aerosol Constituents   

There are many constituents in cannabis and hemp aerosol, which we can classify as indicative of proper or improper performance. These measurements are taken hand-in-hand with aerosol collected mass (ACM) to understand the correct selection of good oil and hardware combinations during expected vaping conditions (ISO and CORESTA methods) and identify failures during vaping that may lead to emissions of harmful or potentially harmful constituents (HPHCs), such as:   

  • Heavy Metals    
    • Tested using ICP-MS    
      • Chromium (stainless steel parts or coil)    
      • Nickel (coil)    
      • Cadmium (stainless steel parts or coil)    
      • Lead (coil solder)  
  • Aldehydes    
    • Tested using GC/MS    
  • Volatile Solvents    
    • Tested using GC/MS    
  • Microplastics and solvated plastics    
    • Tested using LC/MS    
  • Other foreign material (coil-wicking material including ceramic particles, rayon, or cotton fibers)     
    • Tested by Scanning Electron Microscopy Tandem Energy-Dispersive X-Ray Spectroscopy (SEM/EDX)  

Guaranteeing Vape Cartridge Sucess: Measuring Solution Rheology and Cartridge Performance  

How do vape cartridge producers guarantee their solution will not leak when choosing new cartridge hardware?    

The way to guarantee that leakage will not occur is to standardize the minimum “thickness” of the solution used in a particular hardware platform. N.N. Analytics accomplishes this with strict measurements of solution rheology to define the viscosity, shear rate, and elasticity of oils using an iso-accredited method for rheology measurements.    

Additionally, N.N. Analytics measures coil performance by deploying its patent-pending Iron Lung aerosol collection technology to assess aerosol performance by measuring pressure drop, capturing the aerosol, and measuring the total weight and constituents within the aerosol. Pressure drop measurements allow us to evaluate leakage preventing aerosol delivery. Aerosol weight measurements allow for the characterization of atomizer/coil performance.    

N.N. Analytics' patent-pending Iron Lung aerosol collection technology
N.N. Analytics’ patent-pending “Iron Lung” aerosol collection technology

How can vape cartridge producers guarantee their solution will feed well when choosing new cartridge hardware?    

The way to prevent dry hits is by standardizing the maximum thickness of the solution in a particular hardware platform.    

Unleash Your Vape’s True Potential with Vape-Jet & N.N. Analytics

As you can see, the science behind a successful vaping experience requires cultivating a unique balance between the formulation of the oil, the hardware used, and the filling process.   

At N.N. Analytics, we use a combination of measurements to ensure that your vape cartridges perform optimally and meet industry standards. Our expert team works closely with you, the vape hardware manufacturer and the vape filling machine manufacturer to resolve your vape cartridge failure challenges. Let N.N. Analytics help you achieve the premium vaping experience your customers deserve.  

N.N. Analytics Full Service E-Liquid Testing Laboratory | Click to Browse Our Services

Need some help taking your vape cartridge filling performance to the next level? Reach out to our crew and learn how Vape-Jet can provide next-level products for your customers.  

Some of our success stories:  

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube

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Uncategorized

The Science Behind Vape Cartridge Failures with N.N. Analytics

We are excited to introduce Jake Rubenstein, the President & CEO of N.N. Analytics, as our first guest contributor to the Vape-Jet crew blog! Established in 2015, N.N. Analytics is a leading consulting and scientific support firm in the rapidly growing vaping industry. With an ISO 17025-accredited laboratory and a diverse team of professionals in regulatory compliance, manufacturing, software, and reverse engineering, N.N. Analytics helps their clients navigate the complex world of national and international regulation. With customers like Cilicon+, AVD, and Blinc you can trust that the team at N.N. is one of the best labs in the industry. 

As a full-service nicotine, e-liquid, and cannabis/hemp testing laboratory out of San Diego, California, N.N. Analytics provides numerous services, including vape cartridge leak and performance testing to help eliminate cartridge loss and improper formulations. They’ve even developed their own aerosol testing apparatuses to ensure the highest standards of results. 

At MJBizCon 2022, the Vape-Jet crew bonded with Jake over our shared love of the science behind great cannabis products. Together, we look forward to providing our customers with even more comprehensive support in assessing their oil and hardware for optimal performance, standardizing their formulations, minimizing end-user returns, and achieving better customer satisfaction and success. 

What Causes Vape Cartridge Failures? 

Most common vape cartridge failures are caused by improper hardware selection for that specific oil formulation, leading to poor performance within the hardware.   

How do you measure performance?  

We measure key variables of the oil and cartridge combination. Proper performance of an oil and cartridge combination starts with a regulated oil feed rate into the coil atomizer, allowing for atomization of oil into the vapor phase at a constant and predictable rate, without leaks or dry hits.  

Now, let’s look at the reasons vape cartridges fail in a bit more depth.

The Top 5 Reasons for Vape Cartridges Failures

First, Some Definitions  

Rheology—studies the deformation of the flow of material, and in this case, the liquid flowing through a vape cartridge reservoir into the vaporization chamber and out of the mouthpiece.  

Viscosity—a measure of a liquid’s thickness and ability to deform to a container/force when pressure or heat is applied.  

Shear-Rate—the stickiness of a liquid and how strong it clings to a container or surface.  

Elastic Modulus—a liquid’s ability to stretch when a force is applied, either by pressure or by heat.   

Tensile Modulus—a liquid’s ability to resist deformation when a force is applied, either by pressure or by heat.  

#1 Failure: Leaks 

Oil leakage into the air inlet chamber is due to a mismatch in:  

  • Cartridge Feed-Hole Diameter—the aperture of the feed hole is too large, allowing liquid to flood the cartridge-wicking material too quickly.  
  • Wicking Material Porosity—porosity is too high (not dense enough), leading to liquid seeping through the wicking material and leaking out of the bottom of the cartridge.  
  • Rheology of Liquid is Too Thin—the viscosity is too low, the elastic modulus is non-Newtonian, the shear rate is too low, or the tensile modulus is non-Newtonian or too high. 

#2 Failure: Clogs  

Lack of wicking material saturation is due to:  

  • Cartridge Feed Hole Diameter—aperture is too small for liquid rheology.  
  • Wicking Material Porosity—porosity is too high (too dense), leading to liquid not sufficiently saturating the wicking material, which presents as a dry hit.   
  • Rheology of liquid being too thick—viscosity is too high, elastic modulus or tensile modulus is non-Newtonian, shear rate is too high.  

#3 Failure: Hardware Issues  

Cartridge Feed Hole Diameter  
  • Feed holes too large or too many—flooding of the wicking material in the atomization chamber.  
  • Feed holes too small or too few—poor saturation of the wicking material in the atomization chamber, leading to dry hits, which can be harmful. 
Coil-Wicking Material Selection

Ceramic  

  • Ceramic particles can be emitted if the coils are not well washed/sintered before installation, leading to nano-particulates in the vapor stream.  
  • Porosity (see below)  

Rayon  

  • Density (see below)  

Cotton  

  • Same issues as rayon wicking.  
Coil-Wicking Material Porosity/Density   
  • Porosity is too high (not dense enough)—liquid flows too easily through and saturates the atomization chamber, leading to leaks through the 510-thread or clogs through the center post.   
  • Porosity is too low (too dense)—liquid does not flow easily or saturate the atomization chamber, leading to dry-hits or the emission of harmful constituents due to elevated vaping temperatures.
510-Thread Inlet Air Hole Feed Size  
  • Too large—leads to leakage related to improper rheology, making liquid too thin.  
  • Too small—alters the ability to generate sufficient amounts of vapor, leading to dry hits, which can be harmful.  
Center Post Diameter
  • Too small of a diameter leads to clogs from non-atomized liquid and a noticeable pressure drop.
Center Post Venturi-Effect Pressure Drop and Airflow  
  • Buildup of excess liquid that was not vaporized in the center post, leading to clogs.   
  • Rheology is too thin, leading to leaks.  
Cartridge Reservoir Size and Head-Pressure
  • Too large—can lead to too much head pressure, flooding the wicking material in the atomization chamber, and is a major cause of leaks.  
  • Too small—can lead to a lack of head pressure and dry hits due to a lack of liquid feed into the coil-wicking material in the atomization chamber.  

  

#4 Failure: Liquid-Based Issues 

  • Batch-by-batch variation of oils—when distilled in different batches, the rheology of cannabis/hemp oils can vary greatly from previous batches.   
  • Batch-by-batch variation of terpenoids and flavoring components—terpene products, especially in live resin formulations, can vary greatly.   
  • Measurements and mixing during liquid product assembly—a single variation in standard operating procedures can disrupt the balance between liquid rheology and hardware. 

#5 Failure: Filling and Capping Parameters and Execution 

  • Flooding of the Cartridge Coil—high fill temperature, unreasonably fast fill speed, or an improper fill angle leads to fast flooding without air gaps next to the coil-wicking material.  
  • Insufficient Fill Volumes—overfilling of cartridges forces solution into the coil-wicking material before negative pressure is initiated by standard vaping conditions.  
  • Clogging—poor saturation of the cartridge leads to capping failures from the application of caps without correct pressure leading to air gaps in the seal at the cap.
Vape-Jet 4.0 | The Most Advanced Fully-Automatic Vape Cartridge Filling Machine - Click to Learn More

Joining Forces: Vape-Jet x N.N. Analytics

Understanding the reasons vape cartridges fail is crucial to creating and producing a high-quality and reliable product. Whether it is due to hardware selection, leaks, clogs, hardware issues, or improper coil-wicking material selection, having the right knowledge and resources can help prevent common vape cartridge failures.  

But where do we go from here?  

Stay tuned for our next article where we discuss practical solutions to overcome these common vape cartridge failures and provide guidance for achieving enhanced product performance and a smoother vaping experience. If you’re looking to optimize your vape cartridge formulations, minimize returns, and achieve better results, you’re in the right spot. 

Browse N.N. Analytics’ Complete Services

Need some help taking your vape cartridge filling performance to the next level? Reach out to our crew and learn how Vape-Jet can provide next-level products for your customers.  

Some of our success stories:  

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube

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Automation Uncategorized Vape-Jet

Industry Insight: A Look at Automation in Cannabis

Automation in the Cannabis Industry

The cannabis industry has experienced rapid growth in recent years, and as it continues to expand and mature, automation is becoming an increasingly important aspect of production. Automation not only allows for more efficient and precise operations, but it also has the potential to significantly reduce labor costs and improve overall profitability. One area of cannabis production where automation is particularly promising is in the filling of vape cartridges, pods, disposables and other devices. 

The vape cartridge market has exploded in recent years, and it shows no signs of slowing down. Vape cartridges offer consumers a convenient and discreet way to consume cannabis, and as a result, they have become a popular choice for both recreational and medical users. However, filling vape cartridges by hand can be time-consuming and prone to errors, which is where automated vape cartridge filling machines like the Vape-Jet and Jet Fueler come in. 

The Benefits of Automated Vape Cartridge Filling Machines 

Automated vape cartridge filling machines are designed to fill vape cartridges with a precise amount of cannabis oil including distillate, live resin, rosin, and more. These machines are equipped with a range of advanced features to ensure accuracy and consistency. With the Vape-Jet 4.0 specifically, this includes precision dispensing, multi-zone temperature control, and the ability to adapt to a variety of different oil viscosities and formulations. 

One of the primary benefits of automated vape cartridge filling machines is increased efficiency. These machines can fill cartridges much faster than manual methods, allowing producers to fill a higher volume of cartridges in a shorter amount of time. This can be particularly beneficial for companies looking to meet high demand or to quickly ramp up production for new product launches. 

In addition to increased efficiency, automated vape cartridge filling machines can also significantly reduce labor costs. These machines can operate continuously with minimal supervision, allowing producers to significantly reduce their labor force or to reassign employees to other manual tasks. For example, one operator can simultaneously run up to four Vape-Jet units. This can be particularly beneficial for companies operating in states where labor costs are high, as automation can help to offset these costs and improve overall profitability. 

Fernway facility: Vape-Jet fully automated vape cartridge filling machine
Learn more about how brands like Fernway have scaled quickly and efficiently with Vape-Jet.
Fernway facility: Vape-Jet fully automated vape cartridge filling machine

Automated vape cartridge filling machines are also able to improve the accuracy and consistency of the filling process. Vape-Jet filling machines are equipped with precise dispensing mechanisms that ensure that each cartridge is filled with the exact same amount of liquid, with an unmatched repeatability rate of ±0.25%. This can be particularly important for companies producing vape cartridges for the medical market, where precise dosing is critical. 

Another benefit of automated vape cartridge filling machines is the ability to handle a wide range of oil viscosities and formulations. Many cannabis oils and concentrates have different viscosities and require specialized filling equipment to ensure that they are accurately and consistently dispensed. Vape-Jet automated filling machines can handle a wide range of viscosities and formulations, allowing producers to expand their product line without the need for multiple filling systems. In fact, with Vape-Jet‘s configuration profile feature operators can save premade settings for each formulation, batch or hardware and simply load it from the library to begin filling. This saves them even more time and ensures a consistent and reliable fill. 

Potential Challenges of Cartridge Filling Automation 

As with any new technology, there are also potential challenges to the adoption of automated vape cartridge filling machines. One of the main challenges is the initial cost of purchasing and installing the equipment. These machines can be expensive, and producers may need to invest in additional equipment such as packaging machinery to fully automate their production process. (If the initial investment is a financial concern, we offer an upgrade path from our semi-automatic Jet Fueler to our fully-automatic Vape-Jet so you can grow your automation as you scale your operation. Reach out to our crew for more information on this offer.) 

Another potential challenge is the learning curve associated with operating and maintaining automated filling machines. These machines can be complex, and producers may need to invest in training and support to ensure that they are able to effectively operate and maintain the equipment. Vape-Jet CEO Ryan Hoitt calls training one of the “hidden costs” of automation. He says “The cost of training personnel on complex mechanical automation machines can be high. However, Vape-Jet overcomes this hidden cost by building the operating procedure into the user interface. Users always have the most up-to-date reference information available immediately, lessening the need for extensive training.” Our machines also come backed by our industry-leading product support, including a one-year renewable warranty that covers installation, training and support.  

Click to Learn More About Vape-Jet's Six Star Service & Product Support
Read more about our product support on our blog.

Despite these potential challenges, the future of automation in cannabis production looks bright, and automated vape cartridge filling machines are likely to play a significant role. As the cannabis industry continues to grow and mature, automation will become increasingly important for improving efficiency, reducing labor costs, and ensuring the accuracy and consistency of products. Producers who can effectively integrate automation like Vape-Jet into their operations will be well-positioned to succeed in this rapidly evolving industry. 

To learn more about how embracing Vape-Jet automation can bring success to your operation, check out these customer features: 

Think Automation is a Thing of the Future? 

This article was written by an AI copywriter. The future is now, so join the revolution or risk getting stuck in the past. If you’re ready to integrate automation into your workflow reach out to our crew with your questions to see what Vape-Jet automation solutions can do for you. 

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube

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Vape-Jet

Vape-Jet 2022 Company Review

As we kick off the new year, we wanted to take a moment to celebrate the growth of Vape-Jet in 2022. From expanding our on-site operations to growing our international network of developers, designers, and engineers, we’ve made huge strides in refining our products and providing industry-leading support to our customers. We even traveled across the U.S. to visit with customers and learn about their needs and experiences. In short, it was a productive year at Vape-Jet!  

Join us as we celebrate the progress of Vape-Jet and look forward to an even brighter future: 

2022 Overall Growth with CEO Ryan Hoitt

As we begin 2023, I am proud to reflect on another incredible year for the Vape-Jet team. The year was full of growth and progress, highlighting the importance of prioritizing innovation and building value for our customers. Throughout 2022, we remained committed to these goals, releasing an upgraded, fully-automatic Vape-Jet 4.0, and a new software platform, MARVIN, to improve our already industry-leading products.  

Vape-Jet 4.0 | The Most Advanced Fully-Automatic Vape Cartridge Filling Machine - Click to Learn More

Another highlight in 2022 was the launch of our partner program. Designed to provide a one-stop shop for our customers’ vape cartridge production needs, we thoroughly vetted several vape hardware companies, a terpene supplier, and an equipment manufacturing team to establish a solid foundation for quality vape solutions. 

At MJBizCon 2022, we were thrilled to see the evolution of our brand into a recognized and highly respected company within the cannabis industry. We have come a long way from being a small, relatively unknown company striving for recognition to a crew that people went out of their way to see in person. If any event could signify the growth of our company at a glance, this was it. 

Last but not least, we doubled our manufacturing crew and customer service team in 2022, providing our customers with quick support and troubleshooting options with more room to expand in 2023.  

Ryan Hoitt, CEO  

2022 Financial Growth with CFO Brian Kuo 

In 2022, our strategy was to continue the organic, sustainable growth that made 2021 so strong. While the backdrop of the industry was dire, with many companies experiencing low to negative growth, Vape-Jet bucked that trend by having its best year ever, including record-breaking months in the fourth quarter.  

Our mission of innovation (in a space that has grown stale with retrofits and dated equipment) continues to build value for our clients and pushes us to innovate to pass even more benefits to our customers. This mission emphasizes growth alongside our customers, crew diversity and experience, heavy investments in R&D, and local manufacturing, assembly, and support. 

As we look to the new year, I want to take a moment to reflect on some of our accomplishments:  

  • In 2022, our YoY (year-over-year) revenue grew by almost 200%*  
  • We have been profitable and cash flow positive since 2020, with an approximate 428% growth in profitability YoY in 2022*  
  • We have simultaneously increased our total assets by more than 200% with no new long-term debt  
  • Our crew crushed it this year, so we rewarded their hard work by increasing our employee profit share bonus approximately 200%  

Brian Kuo, CFO  

*Financial data included in this blog is unaudited and not to be relied upon for investment decisions. 2022 has not been closed at the time this blog was written. Some figures are estimates.   

2022 Operational Growth with COO Devon Reid

In 2022, our vape cart filling machines maintained 2021’s stellar growth numbers, allowing us to continue reinvesting in improving the manufacturability of our Vape-Jet cart filler. Now, with the release of our 4.0 model, we can build and ship units much faster than before. Notably, despite the increase in units shipped, remote support handled greater than 99% of customer tickets, with only four issues requiring on-site assistance.  

With increased efficiency on the manufacturing end and scaling product support to maintain our goals, we set our sights on electrical safety certifications for international sales. In that regard, we are pleased to report that the Vape-Jet 4.0 passed its electrical safety inspection on the first attempt (conforming to UL-61010 via CSA SPE-1000); this will enable ETL and CE marks to be obtained in early 2023.   

Devon Reid, COO  

2023 Vape-Jet Growth Goals 

Entering 2023, we know the importance of setting clear and achievable goals to drive growth and stay on track. However, before we dive into our goals for 2023, how did we fare in 2022?  

✓ Maintained our dedication to post-sales support by increasing accessibility with more written and video resources, troubleshooting guides, in-application assistance programs, and software-based SOPs.  

✓ Stuck to our innovative roots with continued software and hardware improvements.  

✓ Scaled with our customers by adding operational capacity and maintaining inventory buffers by adding office space and on-site storage.  

Having met our goals for 2022, here are our goals for 2023:  

  • Release a major product upgrade in the first quarter 
  • Release a new Vape-Jet product
  • Obtain necessary certifications for Vape-Jet and Jet Fueler to expand into new international markets 
  • Increase support hours and improve response times ever further 

Get Ready for 2023 

As we wrap up 2022 at Vape-Jet HQ, we hope you’ve gained a better understanding of the hard work, dedication, and innovation that went into making this year a success. From expanding our operations and establishing an international network of partners to refining our products and providing industry-leading support to our customers, we’ve continued to build a strong and sustainable business.   

Looking ahead to 2023, we’re excited to focus on new growth goals and continue building on the progress we’ve made. Most importantly, thank you for joining us on this journey, and here’s to another year of growth and success for Vape-Jet!  

If you are interested in partnering with us, reach out to our crew to learn how Vape-Jet can provide next-level products for your customers.   

Read our customer features:  

While you’re at it, don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other upcoming product announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter

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Jet Fueler Jet-Fueler Uncategorized Vape-Jet

Customer Feature: Ration, Blue Box Brands & BeGreen Supply

At Vape-Jet, we are always inspired by the innovative ways our customers use our products to drive success in their businesses. That’s why we’re excited to share our interview with a man who truly does it all, Chris Michaud. As the CEO and Founder of Blue Box Brands, Ration Cannabis, and BeGreen Supply, Chris shared valuable insights on how using our products has helped grow his businesses.  

As our newest hardware partner, Chris’s company BeGreen Supply builds custom-branded cannabis hardware and packaging. Moreover, Chris’s team uses our semi-automatic Jet Fueler to fill vape cartridges and disposables for his consumer brand Ration Cannabis, a cause-based cannabis brand dedicated to supporting military veterans. 

Brands like Ration demonstrate that Chris strives to build businesses that give back to the community. So, along with some valuable operational insights and inspiration for other businesses looking to enhance their own workflows, we hope this customer feature serves as a reminder of how the cannabis industry—and associated industries—can give back. 

Without further ado, let’s dive into our interview with Vape-Jet CEO, Developer, and Founder Ryan Hoitt and Chris Michaud. 

Watch the full interview above or check out the written article below.

Who is Blue Box Brands?

With product lines ranging from vaporizers and smokables to mouth sprays and edibles, Blue Box Brands is a collection of high-quality cannabis businesses curated to support community causes and serve niche consumer audiences. 

Chris describes Blue Box Brands as ‘a curator and creator of brands.’ On the macro level, Chris explains, “we work with a couple of organizations in D.C., making sure that we’re paying attention to where policy sits and where veterans have access or don’t have access, or maybe there’s an education hole.”  

On the micro level, Blue Box Brands gives back to more localized organizations. One example is Swim With a Mission. “It’s a great group,” Chris says. “They work with the Navy SEAL Foundation out of Florida. We co-host events every year—this was our second year this past July—where you have a paintball tournament, every team gets a Navy SEAL, and you go through the whole tournament with them.”  

Chris describes these experiences as immersive and rejuvenating, allowing Blue Box to give back to the community and veterans who have laid it all on the line. “We’re able to give back dollars to things like improving household accessibility, giving money towards billing codes, or direct help and counseling.” 

“That’s awesome,” Ryan says. “As a former Navy guy, go Navy.” 

“Whether Ration’s helping on the philanthropy side or Blue Box is helping a brand that’s adjacent to its own portfolio, we’re really about commercializing brands and preparing them for scale,” Chris explains. “We have a good relationship with our sister company BeGreen Supply which helps provide packaging and hardware, and that’s what brings us together with Vape-Jet.”  

Outreach and Advocacy

With philanthropic outreach and advocacy playing a major part in what Chris and his team do, we wanted to highlight the various initiatives his team is involved in and the ways they work to create lasting positive change. 

“Ration does a lot of outreach and advocacy and a lot of philanthropy,” Ryan begins. “Can you tell me more about that, how you got started down that route, and why did you select veterans’ organizations?”  

“Veterans service organizations (VSOs) do a lot, and I’m never going to suggest that we can do their job better. It was important to me to find and vet good VSOs so we could accomplish what we’d like to from a for-profit business perspective,” Chris says.  

The ways Ration works with different VSOs depends on the scale of each organization, Chris explains. “Our favorite component is really getting to find out what these people need. Before starting Ration, we spent the first year down in D.C. talking to different groups and finding out who was going to make sense to partner with, who was not going to be afraid of cannabis, who was going to speak up about cannabis in their lobby sessions, in their peer groups. And we found some fantastic people through that process, whether they be individuals or organizations.” 

From that first year, Chris and his team identified that what veterans need is true support. “Our business is providing support to individuals, whether that’s getting them involved with therapy plus medication plus alternative medication.” 

Providing support to veterans in this way really hits home for Chris, whose father served in the Air Force. “My father, back in the day, caught a piece of ammunition off of a plane that was very, very large and messed his back up. He’s been very successful since then, but just a couple of years ago, his injuries started to flare up again, and very recently, in the last year, he was prescribed a number of opiates and a nerve suppressant,” Chris says. 

Eventually, Chris got a call from a family member in the clinical community: “She said, ‘what can we do to get your dad off of these things?’” It was an odd call, Chris explains, because this family member is the expert. “So, you know, [I shared] any bit of exposure that we’ve had in this space to help them get through that. Within two weeks, he was off of the entire opiate program. He kept the nerve suppressant, but he was off the opiates, and now he’s, you know, it’s his choice he doesn’t continue to use cannabis, but it got him through that moment, and now he’s clear of everything. Small success stories like that yield great results, and I want to see that continued in that community.”  

Building Brands with Vape-Jet

“I know we were introduced through Vape-Jet,” Ryan says. “I believe it is BeGreen Supply that operated and purchased the machine. Can you tell me more about how you found out about Vape-Jet and how that’s been going for you?” 

“Sure,” Chris says. “I found out about Vape-Jet by walking the floor at MJBizCon a few years ago, but it was totally by chance, and we were super happy to find a great team and you leading that team. I have a background in medical devices and FDA compliance and pushing things forward to the next level, which is why I wanted to build a device company before getting into brands. But I was like, ‘this guy gets it.’” 

“That was a great meeting,” Ryan recalls. “I remember because we didn’t have a booth that year. I believe you and [Vape-Jet COO] Devon started chatting heavily about medical devices and all the insanity of bringing devices through marketing and FDA approval and everything else.”  

“That was fun because the origins of why we started in the cannabis space really followed that track. We were, you know, a couple of friends who wanted to get away from how long it took to bring products to market in the medical device industry. Now, we’re on to onto kind of a faster-paced industry. It’s volatile, but it’s a lot of fun, and there’s a ton of opportunity to help people and brands.”  

“Can you tell me more about what Vape-Jet devices you use and how you’re using them?”  

“My interaction with Vape-Jet is from two different lenses,” Chris says, “whether that’s direct through Ration and some of the other brands that we have in-house or some of the customers that we support from BeGreen Supply. I was truly attracted to Vape-Jet from our origin story, but also the fact that I found real success in my customers’ stories back on the BeGreen front, whether that’s supporting MSOs or direct brands like Ration. [Vape-Jet] has really versatile system[s], whether we’re talking about an individual filler, such as the Jet Fueler or the Vape-Jet, that’s a little bit more comprehensive.” 

“From my perspective, I love being able to recommend a myriad of systems, and Vape-Jet is always number one at the top. And it also has a great capping solution, which is pretty rare to find systems that are designed to work together,” Chris explains. “Internally, I love setting up my partners for our own brands. We go in from a manufacturing assessment standpoint, and we ask, ‘okay, what’s the real capacity of this place and what do we want to get them to?’”  

From there, Chris helps teams understand their labor, infrastructure, and facility needs. “We typically like to start groups with a Jet Fueler and then graduate them to a Vape-Jet, and our multistate approach is really aimed at facilitating that conversation through Vape-Jet. So we’re taking Blue Box Brands as a portfolio and going to all these different states, and we’re requiring Vape Jet to be part of that protocol.”  

Currently Filling

With Chris focused on implementing Vape-Jet filling machines into production across brands, we wanted to get an idea of the devices they’ve filled and are filling currently. 

“From the BeGreen front, most of our customers are filling cartridges. 510 remains a pretty strong player in the world of vaporizers, but we have seen an increase in disposables at a national level. Beyond that, though, we have got some things that are being built internally—that [may] be a proprietary pod system that’s coming out here very soon,” Chris hints.  

“Service is King”

“One of my favorite things about Vape-Jet is that, from an executive level, I can pick up the phone and call Vape-Jet, and [you] can log into our machine,” Chris explains. As a benefit he’s enjoyed over the years, Chris knows that he can troubleshoot any Vape-Jet or Jet Fueler issues with our support team and receive quick assistance so his team can get filling again. 

“On that note,” Ryan says, “not a lot of people know this, but our organizational structure is all built around support from the very beginning. Every single one of our departments, it doesn’t matter who they are, reports to support. Sales reports to our support department, manufacturing reports to our support department… Everything is focused around support because I’ve found that with any device you build, any piece of equipment that has moving parts and some that don’t, something is going to break, and the business processes you build around that fact are incredibly important.”  

“Definitely,” Chris agrees. “Service is king; learned that through manufacturing a long time ago, whether it was setting up a big factory or working with mom and pop, it’s all based on service.”  

Thank You

We’d like to thank Chris for taking the time to speak with us and share his insights. It was a pleasure to learn more about the amazing things Blue Box Brands, Ration Cannabis, and BeGreen Supply are doing in the world besides providing high-quality solutions for other businesses and end-users. We wish Chris and his team continued success and fulfillment in the coming years. Keep up the great work supporting veterans, and thank you for making a positive impact. 

Read more of our customer features: 

If you are interested in partnering with us, reach out to our crew to learn how Vape-Jet can provide next-level products for your customers.  

While you’re at it, don’t forget to sign up for our monthly Re:Fill newsletter to get early access to company updates, product releases, and other exciting announcements. Follow us on the essentials, too: Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.   

Categories
Events Uncategorized

MJBizCon 2022: Vape-Jet Has Leveled Up 

Three days of cannabis industry pandemonium in Las Vegas? Must be MJBizCon 2022!  

With over 30,000 attendees, industry insiders, and celebrity cameos, this year’s MJBizCon was one to remember. The Vape-Jet booth was packed, our fully-automatic Vape-Jet vape cartridge-filling machine and semi-automatic Jet Fueler took center stage, and our industry friends are thriving—what more could you ask for? 

See how it all went down and why this MJBizCon was the best yet: 

The Evolution of VJ at MJ

Among the returnees to MJBizCon this year, Vape-Jet founder and CEO Ryan Hoitt had a great time reconnecting with friends and introducing newcomers to the world of vape cartridge-filling automation. 

To Ryan, the differences from 2019 to 2022 couldn’t be starker: “In 2019, we walked around, smuggling in brochures and doing guerrilla marketing trying not to get caught.” In those days, Vape-Jet was a fairly new concept, and the potential of an automatic cartridge-filler was not as obvious as it is today. “Our handouts got trashed faster than we could place them, but it brought in just enough interest to bootstrap the first couple of sales,” Ryan recalls. 

In 2021, we set up our first Vape-Jet booth, allowing us to build some brand awareness and connect with folks interested in innovation. “People were starting to take notice, and sales were climbing,” Ryan says. 

If 2019 and 2021 were focused on establishing our brand and generating interest, 2022 was the payoff. “We had to take off our branded shirts just to get a moment of silence during after-hours events and date nights,” Ryan says. “People came purposefully to see us in person. All around town, we ran into existing clients, formed relationships with new ones, and got to experience our 10 seconds of fame.”  

This development, though not entirely surprising given the rapid growth of automated vape-filling processes, was very special to behold. “When we started building a B2B vape cartridge-filling equipment brand, I never for a moment thought we would experience so much recognition, admiration, and command such respect in the industry.” 

“I am incredibly proud of the entire Vape-Jet team for making this a possibility, and I can’t wait to see what 2023 brings.” 

Partners and Friends at MJ

It was great seeing so many familiar faces this year, including: 

Hardware Partners 

Customers 

Equipment Manufacturers 

Terpene Suppliers 

The Evolution of the Vape Market 

Of course, Ryan wasn’t our only representative at MJBizCon. Resident chemist, COO, and co-founder Devon Reid also made his return to the tradeshow floor this year.  

Aside from being chased around MJBizCon (until he took off his branded gear), Devon notes a decisive industry focus on improving QA. “The market is shifting from a fixation on throughput to a focus on quality,” Devon says. “The renewed focus on quality encompasses not only the machine that puts the oil into the cartridges, but the cartridges themselves, the oil itself, the upstream processes for obtaining the oil, and the downstream consequences of implementing all the upstream quality improvements.” 

Why? Because a surplus of supply means customers are faced with more options than ever before. Now, Devon says, many businesses are taking a holistic approach to product planning. “From high-quality equipment to high-quality products, businesses see the positive consequences for end-users (increased sales) and employees (increased retention).” 

Utilizing automatic cartridge-fillers like our Vape-Jet fully-automatic filling machine is a surefire way to improve customer and employee satisfaction. “Fire in, fire out—it’s that simple,” Devon says. 

The Evolution of Vape Producers 

Vape-Jet sales rep Sawyer Sheppard has seen his share of cannabis industry tradeshows and has developed a keen eye for industry trends and matching customers with solutions that fit their long-term goals.  

At MJBizCon 2022, Sawyer highlights a key theme: versatility. “With the rise in different form factorsincluding disposables, pod-type systems, and higher quality oils like live resin and rosin—heating up in the market, versatility is the name of the game.” 

To improve their versatility, Sawyer noticed that brands are increasingly looking for partnerships. “Many customers are now looking for long-term equipment suppliers that they can grow with,” Sawyer says, emphasizing the word “growth.” “After being burned by tone-deaf ‘product support teams,’ businesses want a partner who is not just selling them equipment, but is dedicated to their long-term growth.” 

MJBizCon Session: Vape Market Breakdown

What’s happening in the vape market as we enter 2023? Industry trends took center stage as insiders discussed consumer and quality developments heading into the new year.  

If you weren’t able to attend, don’t worry, here are some key highlights: 

Consumer Trends 
  • Women now account for 57% of vape cartridge users 
  • Consumers increasingly focus on cannabis growers due to live and solventless processes, whole plant efficacy, and the cannabis marketing ecosystem 
  • Speakers emphasized good manufacturing practices that keep formulations simple and test at every stage of the process 
Quality Trends 
  • It has never been more important to hire people who really love cannabis 
  • Shelf stability is essential, but old cannabis shouldn’t be written off 
  • The days of scarcity are over, so diversification of products is paramount 
What’s Next? 
  • Freeze-dried flowers, cannabis experiences (lounges, serving, sampling, pallet development) 
  • States requiring vapor testing during production 
  • New vape sizes and cannabinoid focus coming to market 

‘Till MJBizCon 2023!

We want to extend a sincere “thank you” to everyone who made it to our booth this year! MJBizCon 2022 could not have been the success it was for our team without your support, and we look forward to building off the positive energy we received. The cannabis industry is driven by innovators who prioritize product quality, responsible scaling, and versatile technology, and we are proud to continue leading the charge in vape cartridge automation. 

If you are interested in partnering with us, reach out to our crew to learn how Vape-Jet can provide next-level products for your customers.   

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