The Crafty is a portable vaporizer by Storz & Bickel that I’ve been looking forward to reviewing for a long time. S & B manufactures the legendary Volcano, so my expectations for this pocket-sized addition to their lineup were high. It did not disappoint.
What’s In The Box
The Crafty comes with a nice quick-start manual with a 6-step guide to get you vaping and another 6-step guide for maintenance and cleaning. This is great for people who don’t want to read the full instruction book. And it truly is a book, Storz & Bickel went all out with this thing. It’s 30 pages of detailed info in English alone, and the same content is repeated in several other languages as well. They did great with each of these.
They included a pack of extras too, one of every gasket and every screen, something we will all need down the road. There is a concentrate pad like the one used by the Volcano, and a USB charger so you can either plug into the wall or power up from your computer. Also in the box is a straightforward grinder that I’ve actually been using more than my Magic Flight Finishing Grinder. The S & B grinder can just spin and spin until your herb is the finest consistency you want.
The filling aid is one of my favourite things in the whole package. It is very simple and functions perfectly. Just transfer some herb over from your grinder into the filling aid then place it on top of your Crafty. It snaps securely onto the bowl and fills the oven evenly leaving no mess around the outer rim. This little thing really makes loading the Crafty a breeze. Top marks to Storz & Bickel for all the extra accessories they included.
The actual vaporizer itself isn’t tiny, but it isn’t huge either. It’s roughly the same dimensions as my iPhone X. The Crafty is very comfortable to hold. It has a good weight and is made in Germany from food-grade plastics. I am totally comfortable with these materials being around heat. The mouthpiece flips in and out. The in position gives the top of the unit a nice flat profile for pocketing. When you flip the mouthpiece out to vape a little notch lets you know it’s in the proper position.
The whole top part is the cooling unit and it simply pivots off the body of the Crafty revealing the oven for your herb. After you use the filling aid and you’ve got a full oven, the cooling unit easily pivots right back on and snuggly into place. It holds really well and won’t just pop off unintentionally. The Crafty can be controlled by a single button on the device itself, but most functionality is delivered through a very well-executed phone app. There is also a handy tamping tool that slides into its own spot under the vape.
How To Use
After you’ve ground up some herb with the included grinder carefully transfer it over to the filling aid. The filling aid twists and clicks firmly into place on top of the Crafty so it won’t just fall off and spill your herb. After you take out the plastic piece in the middle it’s easy to load the bowl. Then just put that middle piece back in and place the top back on the filling aid. Now the whole thing can slide off your Crafty keeping all your herb nice and safe inside. This is a very convenient way to load your oven to the perfect level without spilling any, and store what’s leftover afterwards. After tamping the bowl, twist the cooling unit back on and you’re ready to vape!
Using the Crafty couldn’t be simpler. Flip out the mouthpiece and turn the vape on with the orange button. The LED will turn red while it heats up, then it’ll turn green and the Crafty will vibrate when it reaches your set temperature. The first pull was thin because the herb was still warming up, but the flavour was very nice. The second hit was huge and tasty as were several tokes afterwards. When done you can either let your Crafty sit for 60 seconds to turn off or press the button and the LED will turn blue as the unit powers down.
To charge your Crafty, just take out the tamping tool for access to the USB port and connect to either a wall adapter for faster charging or your computer if more convenient. When the Crafty has 20% battery power it can be used to vape with passthrough charging. The LED will flash blue rapidly between 31-60% charge and slower from 61-96%. It will be solid blue when fully juiced.
The Crafty has a very user-friendly app available for both iPhone and Android. It has many functions, including a display for the exact temperature of your Crafty as well as the vape’s current battery life out of six bars capacity. The temperature range is quite wide, going from 104f to 410f. You can even customize your booster temperature, then going into boost mode is as simple as a press of the single button on the Crafty. When your boost temperature is reached the LED will flash red.
Speaking of LED, the super-cool folks at Storz & Bickel made the brightness of the light adjustable. It goes from max “looking directly into the Sun” all the way down to “off” and several levels in between. You can also turn off the vibration. They even included a PDF of the instruction manual in the app in case you lose the paper copy.
The Crafty is just as capable with concentrates as it is with flower. The wide temperature range enables it to handle all types of material effectively. With concentrates, less is more on the pads. Just a little bit will last a long time. If you’re going to do primarily concentrates, it may be better to look for a device designed specifically for that as the Crafty will gunk up over time with extended concentrate use.
The Crafty can handle a lot of normal use without needing to be cleaned. When it is needed, maintenance can be an involved process. First, take off the cooling unit and brush around the oven, changing the gasket if you need to. Pull the mouthpiece off and again check the gasket. Slide the top cap lock back to pop it off, then separate the top and bottom portions of the cooling unit and clean around inside as needed.
The tamping tool can also be used to remove gaskets for cleaning. Keep track of where your gaskets go when you remove them. When you have the cooling unit disassembled submerge it in isopropyl alcohol for ten minutes or so. Afterwards, rinse thoroughly with water and air dry. Reassemble the cooling unit and you’re ready for a clean vaping sesh.
The battery life of the unit isn’t amazing. It only lasted me 2-3 bowls. However, the auto-off function does help it last longer. Heat up time was over one and a half minutes, which is also less than amazing. We carry the newest version of the Crafty featuring upgraded batteries with +20% battery life.
Having said all that, the vapour quality from the Crafty is truly out of this world! It is certainly in the same family as the Volcano. The taste was amazing and there was zero plastic odour after the initial burn off. The first 3-4 hits are great, and it drops off from there of course. This is primarily a convection vape so the flavour is naturally top-notch. Draw resistance is minimal on the Crafty so huge rips are possible even with the heater reengaging. Vapour smoothness from the Crafty is great as well, nice and cool and not harsh at all while still being very satisfying. It’s one of the best I’ve used yet.
The build feels solid and the materials are rugged, I was really impressed with the quality of the design. The efficiency is average, but the AVB that comes out is very evenly browned with no hotspots or scorching. While the Crafty is not a very stealthy vape, it is portable enough to be very convenient for road trips etc. while still giving you an amazing experience. The effects are nothing short of potent, even those who claim to not feel vapes will absolutely feel a hit from the Crafty.
This is the most expensive portable vape on the market (not comparing to its big brother the Mighty). The Crafty is really a premium portable vaporizer. Arguably, it’s the best portable vaporizer even with the high price. Again, it isn’t a “cheap” piece, and it’s not supposed to be, but you do get what you pay for. In this case, a pocketable Volcano that lives up to the Storz & Bickel reputation.
The overall vaping experience from the Crafty is unrivalled. The quality and taste of the vapour is superb and the draw resistance is very low. It is both a portable and well-made vape that is still 100% capable of knocking your face off. The app is very functional, and it’s actually nice to only have one button on the vape itself. The extra pieces of kit that are included were brilliant, especially the filling aid. The instructions are incredibly thorough. Storz & Bickel’s focus on the user experience is exceptional and I wish other vape manufacturers would do this too.
The mouthpiece leaks a little vapour if it’s left flipped out while turned on, but this is a small gripe. I do wish it had user-replaceable batteries though because it’ll be expensive to replace these when they deteriorate in a few years’ time. I’d also like a more powerful heater that can keep up with the bigger tokes. Basically, I can’t hit the Crafty as hard as I’d like to. For the money, a swappable battery and more powerful heater would be awesome.
While the Crafty isn’t perfect, the almost unbelievable vapour quality it so generously provides more than makes up for its shortcomings. I don’t currently know of another portable vaporizer that makes clouds quite like this one does. The experience for the owner is next-level and I wholeheartedly recommend the Crafty.