Magic Flight Launch Box Review

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Often, newcomers to vaporization ask the question; “What is the most popular vaporizer on the market”? And it’s a good question. Choosing a vaporizer which is owned and loved by many people is one of the best ways to ensure you will have a positive vaporizing experience, and when you are spending a large chunk of change on your first vaporizer it is intimidating to try to select the best one by yourself. Some might be tempted at first thought to answer with the Volcano. And while it certainly is true that the Volcano is a very popular choice among vaporists, it pales in comparison when it is matched against the market penetration and popularity that has been enjoyed in recent years by the Magic Flight Launch Box.

Known to many enthusiasts and owners as the MFLB or simply, the “Box”, this little vaporizer is a nondescript wooden rectangle roughly 2 and a half inches long and 1 and a quarter inches wide and tall. A large circular area is bored out of the top of the unit and that is where a fine mesh screen is placed across two metal bars to form a small trench shaped area where the vaporization will occur. These metal bars extend into the back of the unit, where there is a smaller hole perpendicular to them which snugly fits a standard ‘AA’ battery cell. The battery is effectively short circuited through the bars across the electrically resistive screen which causes it to heat up from the converted energy. The battery also powers a small orange lamp inside of the unit which is used both as an indicator that the box is running, but also to the show state of the batteries charge.  A small, clear plastic lid is attached to the top of the unit on a swivel hook. Air is pulled from a small hole in the back of the unit into the vaporization chamber, where it mixes with vapor rising from the load and gets pulled through the heated screen to be inhaled.

The Box is an extremely simple device made from very few components. This is a good thing though, because it has a significantly less chance of breaking over time. However, it doesn’t make it an easy device to use. To use the Box, a user inserts a stripped AA NiMH rechargeable battery in to it and pushes. This battery needs to be stripped because of the design of the circuit; the anode (plus side) of the battery is pushed on to one of the metal bars while the other metal bar uses the side of the battery as a cathode (negative side). There is a black piece of polyutherene at the bottom of the battery chamber which pushes the battery away from the positive bar when the user stops pushing to make sure that it is not inadvertently left in contact with the poles.

When the circuit is created by pushing on the battery, the electricity goes first through the orange lamp which you can look at by staring into the hole that the straw or whip gets inserted into. Then it is run through the mesh between the bars, which heats up instantly. This causes the parts of the blend which are touching the screen to start to vaporize. The box heats up to vaporization temperature in about three seconds, though if your load is moister than usual it might take longer. You control the temperature of the load in two ways, the first by the amount of time you hold the battery in for, the second by adjusting the speed at which you draw from the box. However, it is very difficult for a new user to become familiar with controlling the temperature effectively, because the vast amount of variables affecting the heating action make it difficult, if not impossible to give meaningful instructions.

This means that the learning curve on this vaporizer is quite steep. Many new users are initially disappointed by their vaporizer because they are not able to produce large clouds of vapor or feel the vapor in their lungs. But really, the Box does not work this way. While it is possible to get plumes of vapor off of it, the Magic Flight Launch Box produces moderate amounts of vapor for the most part; and compared to other, digitally controlled vaporizers it almost looks like it is not working. But it is; and it when in the hands of a person who is familiar with it can be a very effective tool. However, be prepared to mess up a few trenches of your material learning how to use it. With the lack of temperature control it is easy to accidentally heat your load too much and end up charring it.
The Box is a small, simple and easy to use, while being very difficult to master. At 99 dollars, it is an incredibly attractive option to those who are unsure about vapor or are on a strict budget. However, in its simplicity lie its faults. Because the Magic Flight Launch Box draws its power from the battery through a short circuit there is no regulation of the power drawn and it will quickly loose its charge. A battery can be used for about half a trench before it has dropped to the point of a noticeable loss of performance, and it quickly gets worse. Users are recommended by Magic Flight to use a single, fully charged battery per trench. Coupled with the fact that Magic Flight only includes two batteries in their package, the batteries quickly become its Achilles heel. Since the batteries take 4 hours to charge, the user is effectively limited to 2 proper trenches per 4 hour period without upgrading to new batteries. For users who’s tolerances have become significant, this can be very disappointing to find out.

A user who finds themselves in a pinch and needing batteries can safely substitute any NiMH rechargeable AA battery once the outer wrapping has been removed. However, department store batteries are not usually of a comparable quality to the ones included by Magic Flight. However, companies like PowerEx manufacture and sell 2700mAh batteries which many owners of the Box have found to be the best replacements. As well, Magic Flight has developed their own “Pass Through” adapter which allows the user to plug their Box into an electrical outlet for freedom from batteries. This product also incorporates a dimmer switch so that the user can control the exact amount of power to the Box, taking one of the biggest variables out of temperature management.

As well as their Pass Through adapter, Magic Flight has developed two other companion products for their vaporizer. The Water Pipe Adapter is a piece designed to provide a comfortable way to use the Box with a water pipe. It should be noted however that these only come in the 45° variety, and you will need to tip your waterpipe to be able to use it if you own a 90° or stemless one. The latest addition to the Magic Flight product line is the Finishing Grinder. This is a small, wooden grinder which reduces any plant material put in it to a fine powder ideal for use with the Box. As well, it is sized to fit over top of the main hole of the Box, so you don’t need to worry about dropping anything.

The Magic Flight Launch Box is easily the most popular portable on the market and by now has probably exceeded the Volcano in total sales. It is popular. But while there are many users who love their box; there are many users who find themselves unable to get enough of an effect. But for the other, equally large group of people who have a medium to low tolerance and want something small and inconspicuous; then there really is no better solution on the market than the MFLB.

Here are some tips to get the most out of your Magic Flight Launch Box:
– Don’t overfill the trench. The box works best when it’s filled anywhere from one to three quarters full.
– Shake your load after every couple of draws to ensure that no material gets charred.
– If you find the resistance against the battery is too much , you can remove the black o-ring to make it easier on your hands.
– If you decide to remove the battery o-ring, make sure your pull the battery off of the positive rail after each hit or you will burn your material
– Be careful with the stripped batteries. If they are set on anything metal or wet they will begin to short out and become damaged. Use the included caps when traveling with box, especially with coins or keys in the same pocket.
– The Box works great with a whip, though it does not come with one. You can either use quarter inch tubing, which fits right into the box, or use 3/8 inch tubing and put it on the end of the stem.

– The smallest effective vaporizer available
– Nondescript, versatile, silent and very low scent profile
– Inexpensive and popular, makes for a good entry level portable
– Well-constructed from high quality wood
– Magic Flight offers a nearly unconditional lifetime warranty on all of their vaporizers

– Price is inexpensive when compared to other vaporizers, but still very expensive for what is essentially less than 20 dollars’ worth of components
– The cost of the Box + the Power Adapter ends up being the same as many competing, better solutions
– Older models especially can easily come open by themselves in a pocket
– Magic Flight warranty is void if your Box’s serial number becomes unreadable
– Clear top allows anyone to see what you have in there


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Magic Flight Launch Box Review, 7.8 out of 10 based on 4 ratings

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