Dabs On The Go With Nimbus

Stephan is in such a mood today that it was a wonder I could produce any new lines at all for my autobiographical novel, The Tiger’s Revenge. My companion monkey — for he has long since rejected the diminutive of “pet” — is sulking. Since the incident with the new vaporizer, he either glares at me from the corner or bangs out furious letters to editors on the manual typewriter he uses. Yes, the animal is as literate as anyone, and more so in many cases. If it weren’t for Stephan saving my life back in India after the tiger found me, I would have found a new companion long ago.

But he is here, and he was here to witness my experience with the Nimbus. At a list price of $79.99, the Nimbus qualifies as a budget vape pen. And it works. If Stephan had his way, the review would end there. I can say that it can and does get you high. I cannot say I thoroughly recommend it, certainly not to owners of monkeys with strong opinions about typesetting.

The high-grade gray metal cylinder screws apart again and again, revealing a structure something like an old Moon rocket in four sections: mouthpiece, the “hood” (extra tubing to allow the vapor to cool), a chamber with a coil, and a battery base.

The Nimbus only uses extracts and oils — no dry weed at all. Flexibility is a great asset for vape pens, but I don’t count its lack against the Nimbus; any forewarned buyer is doubtlessly an extracts enthusiast. I must mention, however, that nowhere is this limitation mentioned on the packaging or instructions.

There, I’ve said it: “instructions.” Stephan is now hurling books at my back — he’s just dented my monitor screen with our hardcover copy of Infinite Jest. I’ve avoided concussion, but damn him. If he manages to open a can of his dog food, I’ll be cleaning for weeks. Where will my novel be then?

Yes, yes, the instructions are bad! I’m telling the world right now, Stephan. Calm yourself.

A tiny foldout pamphlet. A font so tiny that Stephan insists it is 2.5 point. These instructions tell us how to use the single-button system to turn it on, they tell us how to toggle among three voltage settings, they even show how to enter a Stealth Mode so that it doesn’t light up if our parents should happen to be trying to bust us in the dark of the schoolyard.

But they don’t tell us how to get high.

I suppose I should have known that a straight vape pen is a press-and-hold system, but perhaps I am too used to finer products. I charged it, I made sure it was on, I put plenty of wax in it. I tried speaking voice commands. When finally I pressed and held the button out of sheer frustration, vapor came billowing out, and in a rare fit of journalistic fervor, I clamped my maw down, and my trusty old lungs bellied out to full sail.

The next thing I remember is Stephan sitting on my worktable, staring me in the face, far too close for comfort, his lips (such as they are) rippling back from his fangs.

I was too stoned. Way too stoned. The vaporizer lashed out at me, like a Taser invented by an evil version of Mr. Natural. Wax is best as an accent; the straight stuff tasted awful, howling at me off the Nimbus’s coil. Later, I considered that it was the user who might have erred — then realized that the voltage had been on its lowest setting.

It happens to us all some time. I tried to distract myself; I watched the first third of Guardians of the Galaxy of all things, but it was far too intense, and Stephan hated the raccoon. I retreated to bed, pulled the covers over my head, and nearly began to pray. Finally, I fell asleep only to dream a loop of the old television PSA about the frying egg.


Cool Factor: It has a nice solid feel, high-grade machined metal, clean design, but otherwise is nondescript. However, if delivering a huge payload of THC is cool, then the Nimbus is ice cold.

Practicality: I will try to be objective: you must enjoy extracts, and you must take small sips. In terms of payload, it can carry a lot, although loading sticky wax with a tiny spoon (included) almost inevitably includes getting tarry residue on the fingers. I don’t dare find out how long the battery lasts, but I imagine long enough to knock down everyone in an average saloon.

Affordability: Perhaps it is not completely a compliment, but at $79.99, the Nimbus does provide a lot of bang for the buck. Bang is the operative word here.

Overall: The design is solid, but the experience is inelegant. I can recommend it without reservation only to those who have built up an unthinkable tolerance.

Rating: 3/5 for authors, more for those of you who need to dab on the go without the mess and fire hazard of a rig.

Photo by Gabrielle Lurie