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Denver Investigators Use ‘Nasal Ranger’ Smelling Device To Find Marijuana Odors

nasal ranger marijuana denver colorado odor


Have you seen someone using the device that is shown in the picture in the upper right hand corner of this article? If so, did you wonder what in the world is that person doing? Apparently, a person is walking around Denver, Colorado using a device similar to that one trying to hunt down marijuana odors. Yes, it’s a real job that someone does, and yes, there is a device that can give you superhero-like smelling abilities.

According to the Huffington Post:

In Denver, when a complaint is filed about marijuana odor in an area, the Department of Public Health’s Ben Siller is called out with his field olfactometer to sniff around and see if the law has been broken.

Siller, who has been investigating odor complaints for 26 years, uses the department’s Nasal Ranger device to determine how strong the odor is and if a violation has occurred — which it turns out is rare. The Denver Post reports that the odor has to reach a level of 8:1 or greater which can mean a fine of up to $2,000. But that hasn’t happened since 1994.

The fact that government money is being spent to fund a guy with a smelling device who is walking around looking for marijuana odors is kind of weird to me. I personally think that money could be better spent elsewhere. If a fine hasn’t been handed out since 1994, how do they justify keeping this position? How do you feel about it? If there was a ‘Nasal Ranger’ operating in your area, how would you react? Given, there hasn’t been a fine handed out in almost 20 years, but isn’t that reason enough to just get rid of the position? I look forward to your comments.


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Johnny Green


  1. For all wondering why this is happening; Denver passed a law making the smell of marijuana illegal. So someone that goes to a legal store with legal documents to buy their medicine can still get in trouble with the law in their own home. This law was made mostly because of apartment complex complaints.

  2. An adult over the age of 21 years is sitting on his own back porch, enjoying something delicious from his legal stash, which he purchased at a legal store, and he looks up to see a law enforcement officer with his nose stuck in this thing, peeking his head over the fence. My guess is his reaction would be a sustained outburst of loud and raucous laughter.

  3. I am sure back in the early stages of his development, it was used as a butt sniffer lol.

    So good day to you “Peludo” Not surem if the spelling is correct hahaha.

  4. my question is, if it’s legal in our states (CO and WA respectively) Buying this still illegal?

  5. I thought weed was now legal in the states of Washington and Colorado so if this is the case then they should Mos Defs let this guy go send him to a state that would actually want to fund something so outrageous like Utah, Mormons hate herb.

  6. Ahhh, but now they have a NEW smell to investigate! LOL. better than dogs, I guess.

    I’d do it cheaper. Just tell me where you think people are smoking pot, and I’ll go there and see for myself, and report back. honest. lolol

  7. A field olfactometer (Nasal Ranger) is essentially a dilution device. It presents the air you are standing in to your nose at set dilutions. You start by sniffing a relatively high amount of dilution and increment to less dilution until you just start to smell the odor. The amount of “dilution to threshold” represents the strength of the smell. In Colorado, if you had to dilute the air more than 8 times to bring it to threshold, then the generator of the odor is violating the state nuisance odor regulation. Here is a link to a clip from Modern Marvels. It shows how it works better than I may be explaining it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQgWc25NGB4&feature=youtu.be

  8. super good smell high quality all sorts of kush and cannabis if interested do text us asap now via (605) 836-7821

  9. Dont see you doing this with cancer sticks lol wow these people are protecting the odor of the wrong substance.

  10. Okay, bear with me, I’m trying to visualize how this thing works. When the user smells the odor, she can tell what that odor is, and then the instrument measures… what? The particulates?

  11. Essentially, chemical sensors are not sensitive enough to detect many odors or you would need several types of sensors to measure chemicals from different chemical families, i.e. sulfur compounds are detected differently than general volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Field olfactometry is the best option for quantifying the perceived odor. It is measured with the nose. The nose is still the most sensitive and best way to quantify the odors. If toxicity is a concern, then you would take efforts to measure specific compounds of concern. For example, wastewater treatment plants will often use instrumentation to measure hydrogen sulfide, but knowing the concentration of hydrogen sulfide will not always give you the whole picture of what the odor was.

  12. Thanks for the explanation, this is pretty much what the news articles said. But I’m curious as to why the person using the Nasal Ranger has to use his own sense of smell. How does that work?

  13. Hi there. I work for the company that manufactures the Nasal Ranger. I just wanted to clarify a few things about its use and the choice made in Denver to use the Nasal Ranger for the purpose discussed in the article. First, the Nasal Ranger is a field olfactometer used to quantify the strength of a perceived smell. This is a method used world-wide for quantifying odor perception. The state of Colorado has an odor nuisance regulation that is based on this methodology. So, if an agency gets calls about nuisance odors, whether it be from a pig farm, landfill, etc., they can respond with the Nasal Ranger to determine if the odors rate high enough on the device to yield a nuisance violation. Denver has purchased a Nasal Ranger for odor enforcement unrelated to marijuana. It is my understanding that the Nasal Ranger was used as a means to respond to the high number of odor complaints they were receiving regarding grow facilities, not to specifically chase after marijuana. As we would expect, the article reports that Denver found the odor levels were not high enough to show a nuisance existed based on their current standards.

  14. Take some dabs or vaporize if you’re worried about it. If you’re growing 6 plants, get a carbon filter. Poof, no smell.

    Still a waste of time and money for a damn smell. Do they do this for cigarette smokers, fast food restaurants, or industrial plants? SMH.

  15. Futurama’s Planet Express crew found a giant trash ball headed for earth with one of these things.

  16. This sounds really stupid…… kinda pointless since it has been legalized in Colorado and will soon be implemented. But really think about the cost of developing this “thing” and as you said the cost of this guy’s pay and ……. well face it this is just ridiculous no matter how you look at it.

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