How Do E-Cigs Compare to Regular Cigarettes?
Smoking e-cigs is more likened to smoking a pipe or rolling your own cigarettes than smoking regular cigarettes. There is a lot more to the enjoyment of it than simply pulling a cigarette out of a pack and lighting it. Part of the enjoyment of an e-cig comes from getting it to perform to your personal taste. This is achieved through selection of juices, vaping technique, care and modification of your equipment and many more subtle influences. Often considered an annoyance at the onset these things quickly become an important part of the overall enjoyment of the habit just like packing and stoking a pipe for a pipe smoker.
What is an electronic cigarette?
An electronic cigarette (E-cig) is a battery powered device that provides inhaled doses of nicotine by heating a nicotine solution into a vapour. It is an alternative to smoking tobacco products, such as cigarettes, cigars, or pipes. So in addition to nicotine delivery, this vapor also provides a flavour and physical sensation similar to that of inhaled tobacco smoke, without the harmful effects of burning tobacco. So no smoke, or combustion is actually involved in its operation.
What is the "smoke" that is released from Ziggicig products?
The smoke that is released is a vapour that evaporates into the air within seconds and leaves no residue in the air. It will not harm anyone around you, unlike the second-hand smoke of traditional cigarettes. The Royal College of physicians recently published scientific findings that conclude that Vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking cigarettes.
Does the vapour have a smell?
Using a starter kit suitable for mouth to lung vaping , most liquids have very little odor output. Particularly with Menthol and fruit flavoured Liquids. However Tobacco liquids can have a slight smell to them depending on the formulation. Most standard tobacco's are not offensive to bystanders. However more specialized blends can produce stronger smells.
Sub Ohm or more specifically, direct to lung inhale style devices (that produce vast clouds) produce noticeable smells of the flavours being used in them at the time. Very simply put, the more powerful the device the more scent it's likely to create for bystanders.
Do Ziggicig products have a taste ?
The taste depends on the choice of flavour you decide to use. The amount of nicotine present can also affect your perception of the flavour, but generally has a minor impact.
How do you choose your strength of E Liquid ?
If you are using a pen style device or basic starter Kit:
40 per day and More = 20mg
10-15 per day = 12mg
20 per day average = 18mg
less than 10 per day= 6mg or lower
*If you start with a sub ohm device or Direct To Lung inhale style or Sub Ohm Kit device then you will need to , at the very least use Half the strength of Liquid relative to the above recommendations* or the next lowest and closest match. Most sub ohm users use 12mg or less with the vast majority comfortable with 6mg or lower.
My E Cig tank is leaking, what should I do ?
Why E Cig Tanks Leak And What You Can Do About It
In this article we discuss Why E Cig Tanks Leak And What You Can Do About It. It'll only cover stock tanks and not RBA, RTA or RDA. If you're having trouble with custom builds on any of those platforms we suggest visiting YouTube and searching there for specific guidance related to your device. This is due to each device having its own method for coiling and wicking in particular. This article is solely for people who use over the counter tanks and coils that are factory made.
Welcome to Anatomy Class
To understand why your vaping tank might be leaking you need to know how it fits together. There are really only 5 critical components that you need to be aware of:
- Top Cap Assembly
- Coil Assembly
- Pyrex Glass
- O Rings
You may here people say things like "the tank is sealed". Forget you ever heard that as it's false. While there are components that do form seals, it is physically impossible to seal the tank completely. Due to the nature of how vaping tanks work, they cannot seal completely. In fact they depend upon this to work correctly.
Correct assembly eliminates 95% of possibilities for leaking
Most incidents of leaking can be put down to incorrect assembly. Either that or missing components during assembly and therefore incorrect assembly. Here we show you the components and how they generally go together. Don't worry if your tank looks different. The basics are always the same simply scaled up or down with variances in colour and shape.
Screw the coil assembly into the deck. Make sure its screwed all the way down but not so tight that you can't remove it later. At this stage its worth looking over the Bottom O ring to check it hasn't been frayed. Coil assemblies also often feature O rings. Check yours for damage or to see if it's gone missing.
Coils can loosen off between fills so check them every time you top up. Also be sure to clean out the well in the bottom of the deck as juice that is not inhaled as vapour will condense , slowly collecting here given enough time. So clean that out a couple times a week.
Fit the Pyrex glass if you have one or screw on the outer metal casing.Fill with your favourite E Juice. If your tank has a top O ring like this one, make sure it's seated correctly in its slot before fitting the top cap. If you only have a metal outer shroud with glass encased then you typically skip this point. It will come down to the individual tank.
Some tanks allow for separation of the metal casing and feature top O rings, some are not user serviceable and are factory sealed. Screw the top cap on slowly to let excess pressure escape . Otherwise it will force excess liquid into the coil assembly. If your tank seals from the bottom you may have to invert your tank to fill it and close. So in that case screw the deck to the outer shroud whilst upside down. When using new coils you must allow for priming time. For information on coil priming visit this link.
Still Leaking ?
So, now that we've eliminated 95% of the possibilities for leaking we can get down to the nitty gritty of that last 5%. We're going to break this down into two sections:
- Leaking from the airflow inlets at the bottom of the tank
- Leaking from the mouthpiece or top portion of the tank
Leaking from the airflow inlets.
- First things first. When last did you change your coil ? On low powered tanks you get maybe a week to two weeks from a coil. On sub Ohm Tanks about half that. Sweeter flavours clock up your coil's wicks faster. So if your coil is looking a bit brown and black it's probably due a change. If it's over saturated with flavouring it'll struggle to hold liquid properly and this will generally come out the airflow inlets.
- As we mentioned above, have you cleaned out the deck or base of your tank ? Condensate may have built up there over time and it needs to be cleaned once or twice per week. Rinse it out with hot water and give it a couple of hard flicks to get rid of the water.
- Is your E Juice actually compatible with your tank ? Some liquids are thinner than others because they contain higher amounts of Propylene Glycol (PG). If you are using high PG liquid in a sub ohm tank setup, it may be that it is too thin for your coil to support. Try a thicker, high VG (Vegetable Glycerin) E Liquid and this could really help resolve the issue.
- Check your coils wicking holes (little holes on the side with cotton showing). Is the cotton missing or are there gaps where there is no cotton filling the aperture ? If so, you may have a faulty coil. It'll need to be changed as it will never work properly.
Leaking from the top of the tank.
If your issue is at the top of the tank then it's usually easier to pinpoint. Remove your drip tip or mouthpiece. Check inside the well it sits in. Clean that out and clean the drip tip. This is another area that juice collects in. It needs occasional maintenance. Some tanks, especially cloud chasing style tanks need frequent cleaning in this area. As much as once per day.
Does your tank have a variable airflow mouthpiece ? If so then the step above will already have helped. But perhaps you also need to think about closing that airflow adjuster off. It usually takes away from the flavour anyway so why have it open ? ( This is seperate from the main airflow inlets and is less common these days so only applies to older tanks )
Lastly, is your glass cracked ? Even if its just a minor crack it can cause a loss of vacuum pressure within the tank which can cause major leaks through the airflow inlets or minor ones through the glass itself.
1st Generation TPD tanks
Recent regulation changes in the UK and EU lead to new tank designs that had to conform to certain regulatory requirements. The first generation of these were prone to coil flooding that no matter what you did was utterly unavoidable on refills. The tanks worked fine with fresh coils but on refilling, you would get what appeared to be a leaking and gurgling tank. This happened because the coil was screwed to the top of the tank and then "dunked" into the tank and screwed into the deck from the top.
What this did was cause an unusual pressure scenario. Due to the fact that the coil assembly is supposed to absorb liquid into the wicks under vacuum conditions and the coil was being "dunked" without vacuum effect ( so the coil was being immersed in a "non sealed" environment ) , the liquid was able to essentially free flow into the wicks whenever the tank was refilled. This never showed up with new coils because the wicks were not yet primed (so they were dry and could absorb the excess).
The only way to deal with this issue was to top up, close the tank and cover it with a tissue over the airflow inlets. Then blow through the mouthpiece very hard several times whilst depressing the power button on your mod. This would force the excess liquid out of the airflow inlets and also let your wicks reach equilibrium in the now sealed environment of a closed tank. From that point on the tank would usually vape correctly until nearly empty where the air pressure would become to high and it would gurgle again. (5% remaining fluid approximately )
1st Gen TPD Tanks Known to be affected by this issue :
- EGO AIO Kit
- Joytech Cubis Tank
- Kangertech CL Tank 2ml and 4ml
- Simplicity Mini Tank ( Resolved with updated coil spec )
- Smok Brit One Mega Kit
- Smok Brit One Mini Tank
- Smoke Helmet Tank
There are likely more but these are the ones we had experience with. Most manufacturers learned from these and were subsequently able to avoid the issue by designing their coils to take this phenomenon into account.
To no avail....
If after all of this you still have a mysterious leak, then you may have a more fundamental structural issue with your tank. If it's still under warranty, then seek out an exchange. Hopefully though we've been ale to identify and resolve your issue at some point during this article.
Ultimately, getting a bit of juice on your hands or clothes or on a desk is part and parcel with vaping. It's how you deal with it that determines how much of a pain in the neck it will be for you. Big picture though, it's still worth the effort of some general day to day checks and maintenance if it means you're not smoking.
My E Cig is "Spitting" or "Sparking" and stinging my tongue. What should I do?
My E Cig is Sparking or Spitting. What Should I do ?
If you've ever lifted your E Cig, pushed the button and heard a pop whilst seeing something jet out the mouthpiece, then you may have wondered. Why My E Cig is Sparking or Spitting. What Should I do ?
First Things First ...
It's important to know what's actually going on. Some people describe this phenomenon as "Sparking". The first thing to know, is that if its coming out the mouthpiece of your E Cig it's definitely not "Sparks". So you can rest easy that it's not an electrical issue you're dealing with.
Note: If you ever see a spark coming from anywhere else from your E Cig like the base of it, or charging port, then stop using it immediately. In the seven years I've been working with these products I've never seen it happen though.
If it's not "Sparks" then what is it ?
The ejection you are seeing from the mouthpiece is Vapour bursts or jets. They can be caused by a couple of different scenarios. All of which are entirely resolvable and usually without additional cost. Your E cig works by effectively boiling your E Liquid to turn it into steam or Vapour. So if you hold the button down, vapour will eventually start coming out the mouthpiece on its own.
This vapour is not exactly the same as the Vapour you inhale from your E Cigarette. It's much more dense. This is because you have not drawn on the mouthpiece. Vapour from E Cigs needs airflow to react with to reach density levels low enough to be inhaled. Otherwise it would irritate your throat and hurt your mouth.
What if I'm drawing on my E Cig and it still produces Jets that hurt my tongue ?
Occasionally you can experience this issue even when you are drawing adequate airflow through your tank. It can be caused by one of two things:
Your tank may have been sitting overnight with liquids in it. That may have over saturated the wicks inside your coil. To resolve this , you can hold the button down and instead of drawing airflow out the mouthpiece, blow into it. Do this for the same amount of time you normally take a draw. Three or four seconds should do. Have a tissue on hand to wipe away excess liquid that may come out of the airflow inlets on the side or bottom of your tank.
If you try the above and it does not help, then try two or three more times. It may be that your coil wicks have flooded. This can happen on occasion with certain liquids at certain times of year. This is because liquid density changes with temperature. So, in winter for example your liquid may behave differently than in summer. The opposite is also true. This can happen on a hour to hour time scale as well. So you may experience flooding in the morning but it may disappear throughout the day with regular use on it's own.
I've tried this and it's still happening !
The final three elements to consider are fairly straight forward so fear not. Firstly, are you using your coils in their suggested power range ? My experience is that most coils work best from about half way between the lowest and highest suggested power setting. These are printed on the sides of most coils. If they are set too low, the liquid is under dispersed from the get go, and flooding builds up steadily as the day wears on. You don't want your coil slowly reaching temperature, so "give it some" for best results. Just don't exceed the max recommended setting or you will burn the wicks and your coil goes to the bin once that happens.
Check that all the seals are correctly shut on your tank. That doesn't mean screw it so tight you can't open it again. Just check all the rubber seals are in place and that the coil is correctly tightened down into the base or top depending on it's design with no significant gaps between it and the base or top of tank. Any break in seal can result in a loss of vacuum and catastrophic leaking and flooding.
If you've checked all those elements and it's still happening. You may have a faulty coil. Most coils are still assembled by hand as they are too complex for machines to produce. So there can be slight variances in the tolerance of the wicks. It may be that something has got through quality control and no matter what your do that coil will always flood. Usually though these are easy to spot as they leak straight way out of the tank's airflow. Although this is not always a sure sign.
Hot spots are when the wraps of resistance wire that form the coil are wound inconsistently. This can form a point of excessive heat in relation to the rest of the coil that can cause spitting. It's rare to come across this in factory produced coils due to the nature of how they are manufactured. It's more common in custom coils that users fit and build themselves in re-buildable tanks and drippers due to user's ability to shape the coils themselves and consequently making errors in the shaping process. However factory coils are not shaped and wound in the same manner. So whilst it's unlikely it may be a possible cause.
If you suspect a hot spot you can check or have a Vape store employee check the coil for visible signs of an inconsistently wound coil. These can be exchanged if the store agrees that it is a quality control issue.
My e cig is very hot. What should I do?
My E Cigarette is hot so is it dangerous ?
As existing Vapers or E Cigarette users have become exposed to more and more powerful devices, so they have come to experience different behavior patterns from these new devices. If one does not know to expect heat as a byproduct of extra power, then one could be forgiven for being slightly alarmed by a device with a lithium ion battery at it's heart getting hot to the touch.
The good news is that 90% of the time there is a very simple reason for the heat build up and that there is likely nothing wrong with the device or battery. So don't panic in these situations but still treat them with respect.
So you think your device has overheated. ?
If you suspect you are the victim of overheating there are a few simple areas to cover before declaring your device as "ready for the bin". Remember that at a fundamental level all vaporizers produce somewhere between 200 degrees F and 600 F in their normal working range. So they are very much supposed to produce some perceptible heat from the outset.
The reason you normally don't feel this from the device is down to two main things:
- Coolant in the form of Airflow
- Coolant in the form of E Juice
If your device is burning hot to the touch set it outside or in the kitchen sink where it cant hurt anyone until you've read this article all the way through.
If your device is warming up excessively the first thing to check is where the heat is emanating from. Is it from the top around the tank and battery interface area (where the two screw together) ? If you answered "YES" to that then rest easy as it's not your battery that is getting too hot. At least not yet.
Fill Her Up
E Cig tanks tend to work best somewhere between fully filled and about half filled. If the tank is being run half empty or less, then there is a lack of coolant inside the tank. So go ahead and fill her up. Next check the airflow. Are you vaping at 40 watts or higher with very restricted airflow ? If so this can also cause a steady but unrelenting build up of temperature. This often happens when people are chain vaping but prefer the flavour characteristics of a restricted airflow configuration on their tank.
If you're chain Vaping then you need to ask yourself why that is. You can tell if the issue is in the tank if you remove it and the rest of the device cools faster than the tank. This means the source is at the tank, since they are generally made of the same or similar materials.
Full Metal Jacket
Chain vaping plays havoc with your tank and your device. That's because they are generally made from surgical grade steel. The main purpose of this is for easy hygiene and long term durability when exposed to liquids. So basically, they don't rust and they are easy to clean. Unfortunately this means they are also relatively good conductors of heat.
So if you're vaping constantly the heat never has time to dissipate. This is because the heat is being given time to go though the base and chimney of the tank and that in turn is going from the screw threads into your device's outer case. This in itself is not really a major hazard as the battery inside takes longer to heat up and most are good up to about 60 degrees C for normal operation. As an example, if your bath water was that hot it would scald you. So if it's not that hot on the outside then the inside is still safe.
If you have a habit of chain vaping all the time, you should consider the possibility that your nicotine strength of your liquid may be too low. If you don't want to get the excess heat then change that Nicotine level or exercise a bit more self control between draws of your E Cig.
Smaller tanks heat up faster
Since TPD regulations came into effect in the UK the market is based now on small compact tanks. This is the law and so we have to deal with it. So expect some extra temperature from these newer generation tanks as there is less surface area for the heat to dissipate from. If the mouthpiece gets hot, then buy and aftermarket Delrin drip tip. They are heat insulators so they don't get hot at all. The same goes for Ceramic drip tips.
What about heat during charging ?
Heat during charging up to as much as 40 degrees C can be normal for some devices. The operational manual will always state that if it is the case. Some of these devices have been engineered to provide faster charge times. This comes at the price of extra heat production. It's a result of the chemical composition changing inside the battery and a whole lot of electrons moving about.
In these cases you will find that the battery casing or device casing often has holes or perforations in it to allow hot air to escape through ventilation. If that's the case you need to orientate the device so that these "Vents" are exposed to the air and preferably facing upwards where possible. This will allow the device to "breathe properly" and you'll find the heat becomes far more tolerable. If in any doubt,unplug the device and take it to your store an explain your concerns. They will be able to tell if the heating is excessive or not. It's okay to be cautious and seek advice.
But clearly some E Cig batteries do "go bang" ?
This is true unfortunately but its not caused by heat . The heat is a symptom of a more serious issue. When E Cig batteries go into thermal overload it's usually down to one of two or three things:
- Internal hard short circuits in regulated devices (Normal devices). This is when an aspect of the wiring is in contact with the battery when it shouldn't be. This is very rare indeed but not impossible. The easy way to tell the difference between this and any other situation as above is the speed of the heat build up. It would be very rapid. From room temperature to very hot in a matter of seconds. If this happens you have only a moment. Make sure the ends of the device are pointed away from you or your family and get the device outside or into something "burn proof" immediately. It needs to be an open area. If you can't get outside to concrete then just drop it into the kitchen sink. Leave it for a good while and if it goes, you'll know about it as jets will come out of either end. Once they stop you can cover it in salt water. After a couple hours its should be safe to throw away as the salt will neutralize any battery acid.
- Mech Mod thermal overloads (Custom Built devices) Over discharging: This only applies to mechanical switching devices. Either they go when you have a hard short as above resulting from a short in your coil or there may be damage to the battery cover. Always test coil builds to avoid shorts and check the battery wraps to avoid internal hard short contacts with the mod's inner walls. Use only IMR chemistry cells as they prevent blow torch like jets from being expelled. Check that your mech mod has some form of venting holes cut into it from manufacturing to relieve the pressure if the battery does vent. Most bodily harm from venting is caused not by burns but by shrapnel impacts form a lack of venting holes in the device. Lastly, know the limits of your IMR Batteries. Don't build below 0.2 ohms if you don't know exactly what you are doing with Ohms Law.
- Over charging (Applies to all devices): Chargers are designed to automatically cut off charging when it is complete. Now 99.9% of the time this all works correctly. Once in a while though that protection circuit may be faulty or have been damaged through misuse like being dropped one too many times or something like getting wet by accident. So don't just accept that the protection will always protect you. Don't leave your batteries charging unattended and don't leave them charging where they can cause a fire , other damage or bodily harm . Case in point, the bedside table. It's made of wood typically, so it's flammable and its right next to your head when you sleep. Don't use it for a charging surface. Instead charge only under frequent supervision in an area where you know that there are no easily flammable materials within about 3 feet on either side of the charger and batteries. If your batteries are deformed or externally damaged in any way. it's safer to just get rid of them and buy new ones.
The Moral Of The Story
These more severe situations really are statistically one in a million scenarios and on closer inspection into each case many were entirely avoidable. In the situations where they were not due to faulty circuitry, the consequences were avoidable had the users followed the safety guidance from the stores and in the product manuals they were sold with. Form good habits with your Vaporiser and they won't seem like such a chore. Taking shortcuts with this stuff can result in a life changing injury or severe damage to property or both. So don't take it for granted.
If you get affected by a faulty device in this way you will find your retailer will take care of you if they are any good at all. Remember though that it is up to users to ensure they follow safe practice. If you misuse the products you are boxing your Vape store into a corner. It's a corner that is expressly covered by the manufacturer's manual and warranty terms. So don't ignore it as ultimately, it is the user who loses out if the worst happens.
What is Sub Ohm Vaping?
Sub Ohm Vaping is when a device is specifically calibrated to run at much higher power levels in order to achieve more vapor output. This results in better flavour and also extracts more from the nicotine content in the E Liquid. Sub Ohm device users generally use lower nicotine content Liquids than regular Pen style users for a comfortable , smooth and flavourful vape.
What is 'Cloud Chasing'?
Cloud chasing is a cultural activity that exists within the advanced user's circle of the Vaping community. It is practiced by those who have been vaping long enough to have moved away from nicotine entirely or at least to very low strengths of liquids. They use specialized equipment that produces very thick vapor in vast amounts and enjoy the flavour much in the same way a Pipe smoker of old might have.
Why does my coil heat up so slowly?
Why is my coil heating up so slowly
If you've gotten into coil building on mech mods or on regulated mods and have wondered why some coils heat faster than others, then this article is for you. So Why is your coil heating up so slowly ?
Are you a Mech Vaper or are you regulated ?
This is the first question you need to answer as it determines what you can and can't do with your setup. Mech Mods are limited by resistance and the continuous discharge rate of the battery in use. So what you need to do, is find a sweet spot between coil to wick coverage,ramp up time as well as temperature and battery life.
Regulated devices are easier to work with as they will collect and store power for deployment at your desired wattage (Voltage) regardless of the coil you have fitted. A Mech's wattage is determined as a direct result of the combination of the coil and the batteries voltage being pushed through them.
Knowing what watts are.
A lot of people think that when you talk about watts you are talking about electric energy. This is incorrect. Jules are electric energy. Watts are a product of electrical charge being pushed through a resistor. The product is still energy but in the case of a coil this is heat and light or radiation. Primarily in the infrared spectrum but also as visible light.
Regulated mod makers do not explicitly tell you this so most people don't know it. So think of your regulated wattage setting on an adjustable device as the wattage when used with the average basic coil. Or as the truth which is a voltage setting. If you fit a more complex coil it will not produce the same outright temperature in the same time frame.
Simpler is better for Mechs
A single 18650 tube mechanical mod can produce a maximum discharge rate of about 25A continuously. It can do this between the remaining charge level of 4.2v fully charged to about 3.7v or so remaining. This is your limiting factor. If you add loads and loads of wire in your build you'll still push the same volts using the same amps through the coil. However your surface area which is larger and more complex in say dual clapton coils requires more time to ramp up with the available power.
So the best thing to do is to keep a mech mod build reasonably simple. One of the best builds I can recommend for a great balance in ramp up time, flavour and battery life is a simple dual parallel coil for a dual coil layout or a simple 5 to 6 wrap single clapton coil. You can see there is a compromise between single and dual mode in that approach. Dual Parallel coils involve wrapping two strands of wire side by side without twisting them. 5 or 6 wraps over a 2.5mm to 3mm diameter coil jig will do nicely. One in each side of the tank or dripper for dual mode.
Because there are two strands in each coil in parallel, this drops your resistance so you get the battery life. It also doubles your surface area to wick ratio over a standard coil so you get more flavour and vapour . Crucially though it still ramps up at a similar speed to a regular coil which is better for battery safety. It's also more convenient to vape on as you don't have to wait for the vapour temperature to build up each time you press the button. This helps keep you safe with your batteries as well by preventing thermal overload.
With mech mods you generally want to avoid builds that are so low in resistance that they encourage short circuit like behavior from the battery and you need enough resistance that the coils ramp up to the kinds of temperatures needed to vape , but the compromise is that you need the surface area coverage over your wick to produce good flavour without over burdening the battery with excessive load.
Excessive load means holding the button down forever while the coil never really heats but you're well within safety limits of the cell. Low Resistance will allow heat to be produced fairly quickly but if the resistance is too low the battery may not be able to keep up and this is where you can venture into dangerous territory with battery safety. So it needs to be a balance.
As a general guide line the best 18650 cells are usually quite safe and perform well between 0.2 ohms and 2.1 ohms . If you build at 3 ohms the vape quality will be underwhelming at best and if you go below 0.2 ohms you're venturing close to the limit of the discharge rate of the battery which can lead to thermal overload.
So let's look regulated devices
Regulated devices do ultimately follow the same principles as Mechs but with a wider range of flexibility and safe guards. So for example if you build a coil with resistance too low for the device it simply wouldn't allow you to use that coil. However if your coil was just slightly pushing the battery towards the limit of it's output capability the chip would do it's best to "manage" the power output to deliver your request.
It does this by essentially storing and deploying the power that using various transformer like stages through the various components on the printed circuit board. Essentially functioning like a step up transformer but one that you can adjust to your needs within reason. So on a regulated device you can punch above your weight a bit. Similar rules apply though.
If you're using a device limited to 100 watts or less you may struggle to run dual claptons for a meaningful amount of time but the device will run them as long as it can run around 60 to 80 watts in it's offered settings. So it's better to use a dual battery mod for something with complex wire used in a dual configuration as you'll get a whole day between charges even running up to 100 watts for big builds.
If your device only offers up to 50 watts then I'd suggest sticking to simpler builds like single Clapton for example or the dual , dual parallel build described earlier.
To some things up.
So, if you're looking to use complex coils for ultra dense vapour, use a regulated device. One with dual 18650's at least to make battery life manageable between charges. If however, you like the reliability and simplicity of a mech mod or love to collect them, then just keep the coils simple. Dual parallels or twisted wire work well for dual coils setups. Single clapton's will also fair pretty well . Get ones with Nichrome 80 cores to keep the resistance load down as much as possible .
Remember to keep your mech builds for single battery devices above 0.13 ohms as the ultimate low resistance mark for use with a good cell like a VTC5A or better. If your cell is questionable then stay above 0.2 ohms for safety's sake. The same applies to complex coils. If you have to hold the button down for ages, remember that that in itself can push your cells into thermal overload on a mech. So if it's getting crazy hot, then you need to accept your devices limitations and consider simplifying the coil layout or raising the resistance.
The more complex your coils, the harder you need to push power into them. Only Amps and Voltage can do that. If you don't have enough amps (Mechanical) then you need a chip to help you so go regulated. Watts is just smoke and mirrors really. It's something that helps to sell mods and in reality the manufacturers are talking about voltage. If you prefer mechs then know your cells and build simple enough coils that respect the laws of physics and you'll be okay.
What is DTL and MTL
Explaining Direct To Lung and Mouth To Lung Inhale
As retailers we have a much easier time explaining Direct To Lung and Mouth To Lung Inhale methods in store. However online customers are often left to fend for themselves when it comes to the topic. So we thought this would be a good time to try to address the issue. Hopefully this will serve as good advice for first time E Cig buyers who prefer to shop online.
So why is inhalation method so important ?
The ability to mimic the sensation of smoking as well as the habit itself is key to the success of vaping as a "quit smoking" strategy. However, the needs of a smoker moving to vaping for the first time as compared to a long term Vaper are quite different. Newcomers are looking for something that very accurately mimics the sensation of smoking. So they expect a kick to the throat and chest that gives them a "hit" physically. Nicotine that is being delivered also caters to the mental "hit" people are expecting on their nervous system.
It's the lack of this physical stimulus that makes patches and gums as well as sprays ineffective in many cases when it comes to long term smoking cessation. Vaping offers these physical stimuli but also addresses one other key shortfall with current medical alternatives. Getting the flavour and "hit" sensation right for newcomers is key to being able to stick with Vaping.
Mouth to Lung Inhale for beginners.
One would assume all E Cig starter Kits are made the same. However this is not the case. They can cater to a range of tastes. For most new starters though we see the greatest success with MTL ( Mouth To Lung ) kits. This is due to the fact that most smokers are used to having a filter to draw their smoke through. This adds a certain amount of resistance when you take a draw. Remove that resistance and it can be quite disconcerting.
Due to this resistance most smokers are accustomed to using the muscles in the jaw to first draw smoke into their mouths. It's suspended their for a moment before being inhaled. Usually inhalation occurs once the cigarette itself has been moved away from the mouth.
To directly mimic this characteristic MTL E Cig kits exist. They generally have smaller mouth pieces to restrict the draw and typically feature heating elements or "coils" with an electrical resistance of 1 ohm or higher. These "Coils" are consumables that are regularly replaced after repeated use.
E Liquids play a key role in inhale method.
MTL kits are designed with a very particular set of E Liquids in mind. They consist of 50%PG ( Propylene Glycol ) or higher and generally have higher Nicotine content. They also contain some VG ( Vegetable Glycerin ). The PG contributes to the throat and chest hit sensation and acts as a flavour carrier. The VG contributes mainly to the visible vapour you see and has almost no throat or chest kick at all.
By far and away the main contributor to throat and chest sensation is the nicotine level of the Liquid. The higher the Nicotine level the greater the kick.
Direct To Lung Inhale and Sub Ohm
Direct To Lung inhale method is commonly associated with Sub Ohm Atomizers. DTL uses electrical resistors rated 0.9 ohm or less. Not only that but the tanks and drippers or RDAs come with larger mouthpieces. They have much less restricted airflow and require higher power to run correctly. The main reason for all of this is to extract deeper and richer flavour. There is also a certain visual satisfaction from seeing a massive plume of thick vapour on exhale for many Vapers who have permanently left tobacco behind.
It's not for everyone though as its has next to no throat or chest hit relative to Nicotine content as DTL Kits are designed for 60%VG or higher. High VG Liquids are commonly only available as 50ml or 100ml shortfiils requiring additional nicotine boosters to mix them up to a 3mg strength.
The DTL Experience
Vaping DTL kits is rather like vaping a hookah pipe or a bong. You skip the mouth bit and its like just taking a big breath straight into your lungs. It's like when you "chug a beer" . Most people take a sip and then swallow and that's what MTL is like. When you chug a beer down at a frat party for example, you have to relax your throat and let the vacuum effect take all the beer down. DTL is more like that. You simply relax the throat and breath the vapour all the way into your lungs.
Because you're filling the entire expanse of you lungs with vapour and its composed of mainly VG, the result is a massive cloud of expelled vapour that is full of flavour but doesn't feel like a cigarette in the slightest.
Knowing how to Choose
Most kits and liquids carefully state in their product descriptions what type of kit or tanks they are suited to. So if your read the information carefully you shouldn't have too much trouble picking up the right vaping device for your needs. Remember though that you've got to look at the VG and PG content ratio in the liquid description as well as the Nicotine strength and match that to the device you think is suitable. Usually the recommended liquids below the kit itself on our kit product pages are all from compatible brands that match the kit you are looking at. Whereas the flavour product pages will give recommendation at the bottom of the page based on the flavours you're looking at.
If you find you're still stuck or confused, don't panic. We're only an email or phone call away and we're here to help. So don't be shy. Get in touch !
What are VG and PG?
Vegetable Glycerin and Propylene Glycol are the two main constituents of most commonly available E Liquids. The VG produces that smoke like look of the vapour and provides a characteristic smoothness to the Vapour. The PG is the main flavour carrier and provides some of the 'throat Hit' sensation that makes smokers feel at home with vaping when they first switch.
These are added together with a flavour concentrate and the nicotine dose to form a particular bottle of E Liquid. VG, PG and Nicotine content are always full pharmaceutical grade in order to guarantee full safety and efficacy. Flavour concentrates are food grade with particular types either being allowed or disallowed under the TPD regulations of 2016 (EU/UK) . All of our E liquids are diacetyl free , vitamin e Acetate Free and with full spectrograph lab test results provided to us prior to sale to the public.
My throat hurts when I vape...
Why does my E Cig Hurt My Throat ?
If you've just got into vaping and asked yourself "Why does my E Cig Hurt My Throat ? " then this article is for you. There are a number of reasons this could be happening and 9 times out of 10 there is a straightforward solution.
Different strokes for different folks
The first thing you need to understand is that there are tonnes of different types of vapes out there. Some devices are built to work with certain types of E Liquids, so a mismatch can cause issues. Before we get into that though, you need to ask yourself what kind of vape you want.
Some people really want a realistic , smoking like experience from their vape. Others prefer a smoother vape that offers bags and bags of flavour. Some prefer a strong nicotine hit and others only need a mild to light nicotine hit.
What kind of device do you prefer ?
Many starter users prefer a smaller and more discreet device. Sometimes men prefer something "boxy" and more masculine looking. Women have a tendency to gravitate towards pen styled devices. The trouble is, if you shop based entirely on looks then its very likely you'll run into a compatibility issue later on. So if you want it to work like a cigarette does, you can generally make do with a starter kit. Particularly if its suitable for "MTL" or mouth to lung inhale method.
If you're focused on a smoother Vape or have had issues with your throat hurting then there are a number of things you can try.
Smoothing out a starter Kit
The throat hit and chest hit in a starter kit are mainly determined by the liquid being used with the Kit. Our Ziggicig Classic lIquids for example are formulated to replicate the throat and chest hit of traditional cigarettes quite closely, so they pack a bit of a punch. They are however different from smoking so some people can find them harsh and some not.
The first thing to know about these liquids is that they are high PG liquids. PG and VG make up the liquid solution. The PG adds throat and chest hit. PG stands for Propylene Glycol. CG is Vegetable Glycerin.
You can reduce the throat hit of these liquids considerably by dropping the nicotine content. Nicotine ,when it's formulated as what is known as "freebase nicotine" adds a lot of throat hit. In fact its the main source of this sensation. However by simply dropping the nicotine you may make things more comfortable, but you may not get the hit you need. If that's the case then you need to look at a liquid that uses Nicotine Salts as it's formulation. For starter kits it must be at least 50%pg in order to work with most starter kits. Nic Salts are not actually salts but they resemble salt like structures under a microscope, hence the nickname. They basically deliver better nicotine absorption but with little to no throat hit. These are state of the art, new liquids just hitting the market recently.
In a very small percentage of cases extreme coughing and irritation can occur when trying vaping. This can be caused by allergic reaction to either the flavouring or the PG (Propylene glycol). If it's the flavouring then most likely it'll be the tobacco flavouring or fruit flavouring. These are generally nut based, so this is why those with nut allergies may suffer irritation from them. Try using mint or menthol based flavours to overcome this. You should see a dramatic difference immediately.
If it's the PG content then you can explore high VG content liquids. To use them you will have to go up a stage in the type of hardware you are using. VG liquids are made for what is known as a "sub ohm" device. These devices are primarily designed for Direct To Lung ( DTL ) inhale method. They also use much lower nicotine content. You can find out about Sub Ohm strength selection in our FAQ's . VG is smoother by nature and produces the visible vapour that you see from E Cigs.
Throat hit with more advanced devices
You may use a high powered device like myself. Perhaps you vape a 6mg High VG liquid for thick plumes of tasty vapour for Direct To Lung Inhale method. Now sometimes you may find that you get undesired throat hit from certain types of E Liquid. We often hear people say "I vape at 100 watts". This is wrong. You should set the power relative to the liquid and coil you are using. Not to a predetermined setting that you simply like the sound of. It may only mean a 5 watt adjustment up or down but it can make a substantial difference.
In some cases though it can be the liquid itself. Flavours are a subjective thing. Some flavourists and E Liquid companies formulate their liquids to inherently have more throat hit sensation and some prefer a smoother interpretation. These sorts of differences are more subtle and it's difficult to know until you've actually tried a particular liquid.
Under Dispersed Liquid
Many people presume that if they feel throat irritation the power on their adjustable device must be set too high. When in fact its often the opposite that is true. If the coil is under powered , you will not sufficiently disperse the E Liquid. This concentration of vapour can cause significant irritation. Also, not all PG and VG are made the same. So an 80%VG blend from the USA can vary in viscosity somewhat from one made in the UK for example.
So, the best thing to do is set your power for that particular liquid. If its still intolerable then you may have to drop your nicotine levels. If you're using shortfills then look into getting Nic Salts based Nic Shots for your shortfills and that will improve things significantly. Take care to make only incremental power adjustments and never exceed the manufacturers guidelines for the coil you are using. They will be printed on the side of the coil.
If you're using custom built coils or pre-wrapped custom coils , then you probably know these things. If not, then it'll be food for thought when it comes to you next build.
To summarize the most important elements for excessive throat hit:
- Check your VG PG ratio (Higher VG is smoother but generally not compatible with MTL devices)
- Do you have a flavour or PG allergy. Try a mint flavour to eliminate that cause. If not , try high VG liquids with a compatible device.
- Check your Nicotine Level
- Check your coil resistance and match your power level to that and increase as needed until the liquid smooths out.
- Look into Nicotine salts for a massive boost in smoothness.
- Check and see your coil is flooded or your tank is "gurgling" This restricts airflow and causes under dispersion . Clear and clean any blockages in the air inlets of the tank or replace the coil if it floods for no reason.
Hopefully that will help you nail down what the root cause is and take adequate steps so you can enjoy a smooth and rewarding vape .Good Luck ;) Oh and make sure to stay hydrated . Vaping dehydrates you so keep yourself topped up !
What Are Nic Salts?
What Are Nic Salts and how do they work ?
Nicotine Salts are taking the vaping community to the next level of E Liquid quality.
Here you will find everything you need to know about what Nic Salts are, and how they work.
Nicotine salts are simply put, the original form of Nicotine as you would find it in nature. Normally when nicotine is extracted from the tobacco leaf it must be chemically altered in order to do so. This chemically altered form is what as known as Free Base nicotine. Freebase Nicotine is what is found in regular E Liquids.
However, when you extract that same nicotine and correct the form back to it's original state , it looks similar to a salt in structure under a microscope, hence the term "Nic Salts".
Freebase Nicotine generally has lower absorbency compared to the salts compound and produces a more noticeable throat hit sensation. In addition it has a tendency to oxidize more noticeably which changes the colour and flavour of the E liquid over time. This can have a positive effect on flavour but generally the effect of their nicotine itself diminishes over time. The effect is minor though and not perceivable until the e liquid approached two years of age or so. This is why some E Liquids feature expiry dates on their outer packaging.
Nicotine salts in contrast have a high absorbency yield but with little to no throat hit sensation depending on the flavour and strength. Because of this lack of throat hit they can be used in a much wider array of devices with no ill effect in terms of desired performance. They tend to deliver a more immediate relief to craving symptoms. Liquids containing this form of Nicotine however will not mature like freebase liquids do. They oxidize at a significantly slower rate. So the flavour will generally remain stable throughout the lifetime of the liquid.
After a few years of Nicotine salts being available on the market we have found that it comes down to personal preference. Some users prefer the physical kick delivered by freebase nicotine and don't notice the difference in absorbency. Some users however require the absorbency but not the physical throat hit sensation.
What is Steeping and Streething?
Steeping is a process of shaking your E Liquid well and leaving it in a dark cool dry place for a week or more to mature. This process helps to bind the Nicotine, PG and VG together and helps the flavour concentrates bind for better overall flavour representation .
"Streething" is a process where you squeeze the excess air out of your E Liquid bottle to replace the oxygen molecules with fresh ones so help improve the Steeping process. Streething is typically performed once or twice prior to steeping.
Steeping and Streething affect liquids most dramatically in the following order from most to least :
- Desserts ( Anything with milky or creamy notes )
- Fruits and Drink themed
- Menthol and Mint
What is the TPD?
TPD stands for Tobacco Products Directive. This is the current set of regulations that E Cigs are governed by in the UK and throughout the EU. Although E Cigs and E Liquids are not tobacco products, the directive was amended and updated in May of 2016 to include them so as to promote better science and understanding of the effects of Vaping on the long-term health of users. It also ensures certain minimum safety standards are met in terms of quality control and ingredients.
How safe are E Cig Batteries?
A well manufactured device should have several safeguard features built into it to protect the user from over discharging and overcharging of the battery. This does not mean that users should take liberties with batteries, so standard battery safety measures should be taken when using any lithium ion battery, no matter the safety features provided.
- Never leave your battery charging overnight or unattended.
- Charge you battery until the charger shows it has completed its cycle and no longer.
- Only use the specified compatible charging equipment supplied to you by your retailer for that particular device.
- Avoid covering any Vent Holes on the device whilst charging.
- Do not leave batteries unattended in a hot environment like your car for instance.
- Discontinue use of a battery where the outer packaging has been breached or broken.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD E Liquids and oils contain CBD , CBG and or other terpines which are cannabinoids associated with relief from seizures, chronic pains and fits. They can also be beneficial to general nutritional requirements. These products contain no THC whatsoever, so they will not 'Get You High'.
They do however come with a drowsiness warning as the effects can be said to be similar to that of paracetamol or ibuprofen. The key difference is that those two compounds are derived from opiates and can cause damage to the liver and stomach lining. You can also suffer and overdose from them. CBD and CBG however are entirely herbal and cannot induce an overdose risk when consumed in excessive volumes.
Where opiates act directly on the nervous system as inhibitors, by acting directly on the neurons themselves, CBD and CBG do not. Instead they fit in key tone receptors in your cells. In other words, they work in a similar fashion to how vitamins are used by your body. Your body has evolved to have a 'slot' in which they can be received. If you do not suffer seizures, chronic pain or fits, then you will notice little to no effect from CBD as your hormonal system is likely already balanced. These solutions only provide noticeable effects to consumers who do not have balanced neurological function that is beyond their control. If you purchase CBD products thinking they will have the same effect as marijuana you will be disappointed. If you have long term chronic pain or neurological issues, then CBD products could be life changing.
Please avoid driving or use of heavy machinery whilst under the influence of CBD as it will generally relax those who are not usually able to relax due to the pain they suffer. This in turn can cause drowsiness. Use with discretion. CBD and CBG are not classified as a controlled substance under UK and EU law and are therefore legal to own and use. THC is classified as a class C controlled substance and is illegal to possess or distribute in the UK due to its known psychoactive properties.
What device is best for CBD E Liquids
What Kind Of E Cig Or Mod Is Best For CBD Liquids ?
Everyone knows now that E cigs and Vaping devices come in a considerably wide ranging array of sizes and styles. Choosing the best one for your needs can be a bit of a minefield. Particularly when using a niche style liquid like CBD oil for example.This article covers what to look for in a liquid and how to match that up with a compatible and enjoyable device for Vaping CBD. So just What Kind Of E Cig Or Mod Is Best For CBD Liquids ?
Where to Start...
The first thing you want to try to look into is the CBD liquid your are intending to use. Most CBD liquids are 50%VG and 50%PG solution. The VG (vegetable Glycerin) provides the vapour that you see on exhale and generally offers a smooth vape on your throat. The PG (Propylene Glycol) is the flavour carrier and gives a bit of a throat hit sensation that for ex smokers reminds them of the sensation of smoking a cigarette. The More VG that is used, the thicker the solution. The more PG that is used the thinner and harsher the solution. So CBD Vape liquid is usually a balance between the two extremes.
So how do you choose a device suitable for your needs ?
Choosing a device for Vaping CBD is much like choosing a device for vaping standard E Liquids. You want to get a device that features a Tank that has an atomizer or coil that can wick the viscosity of liquid you have without issue. That might sound like a bit of "mumbo jombo" at first but don't panic. Most modern atomizers can do this without too much trouble. Atomizers are the heating elements inside the tank that do the work of heating the liquid into a vapour. They absorb the liquid usually into a cotton membrane inside the coil housing and a resistance wire heats the liquid to produce vapour. These need to be replaced every week or so depending on the flavour.
Spotting the difference
To know which ones can handle CDB you only need to enquire about two things. Can it wick fast enough and what resistance the coil is. The resistance is always given in the description and you can tell what size the wicking holes are by looking at them. The easy way though is to simply choose something with a resistance of less than 1.0 ohm. It could be 0.7 ohm , 0.2 ohm or 0.5 ohm. It doesn't matter too much as long as its less than 1 ohm. If it meets that criteria it'll definitely work for CBD.
The wicking holes should be around 2mm in diameter or more and there should be at least two of them. Drippers or RDAs or RTAs which are fully customisable and rebuildable by the user (but require research and practice to learn to use safely) are all suitable. Most coils that are above 1.2 ohm are not suitable but there are a couple of exceptions...
So what are the best options and How Much will they cost ?
Entry level starter kits:
The cheapest you can get away with for a starter kit for CBD that work well is around the £25 mark these days. They would predominantly be mouth to lung inhale kits which means they will have a restricted airflow that mimics the draw characteristics of a cigarette quite closely.They also represent the few kits with higher than 1 ohm resistance that have modern coil designs capable of supporting 50%VG Liquids. Here we list a couple options that fall under that category :
- T18 II and or T18 II MINI
- Aspire AVP Pod Kit
- Innokin EQ POD Kit
Advanced Kits Updated 2019
High powered devices are no longer advised at all for use with CBD. The reason for this is that current research suggests that most terpenes and cannabanoids break down and burn at higher power settings commonly found in advanced devices. Therefore starter kits are ideal for use with modern CBD and broad spectrum E Liquids.
So there you have it. That's roughly how you go about choosing a vape kit for use with CBD Liquids. The same basic principles apply as for vaping nicotine based liquids. So look at things like battery capacity, size, weight, included extras and so on. Ultimately its a case of how much you are willing to part with to gain the features you think you need.
Most customers we serve in store go for something like the Aspire Pockex (shown above) for their first kit. It's not too expensive, provides a good level of sub ohm flavour performance and is still relatively discreet and compact. That would be our recommendation for most people but you can still get the benefit of CBD with a handful of entry level kits that you may be able to find cheaper. That all being said, if in doubt simply ask us and we'll do our best to help.
Basic Troubleshooting measures
Most common causes of leaking:
- Cracked glass (replacements can be purchased in store for most models)
- Damaged or missing rubber ‘o rings’ that fit between the glass and metal. ( usually requires a new tank if this is the case – some tanks come with spares , some spares can be bought online )
- Coil not fully tightened into the base or top cap of the tank
- Incorrect specification of E Liquid being used for the type of hardware. Starter devices typically run on thinner viscosity than their more advanced and higher powered counterparts.
- Cotton inside the coil damaged,accidentally burnt or missing.
Most common cause of ‘No Vapour’ – or no output:
- Coil is not properly tightened into the base of the tank
- Coil is faulty causing a short circuit -Usually indicated by flashing LED sequence or screen message of some kind.
- Connection between the device and the tank damaged through over tightening ( This can be adjusted and corrected by staff in store in some cases )
- Short circuit in the device usually indicated by flashing lights – type of issue that can be a manufacturer defect in brand new devices but is most commonly caused by shock (dropped on a hard surface) or liquid damage to the circuit board itself .
- Flat battery (Re charge required ) - can also be indicated by flashing LEDs and is often confused for a faulty coil.
- Check to see the device is actually turned on - usually 5 clicks rapidly within a 2 second window of the main power button. Some devices may require more, or fewer clicks.
My Coil resistance keeps changing or shows as 0.0 ohms and I can't understand why
Why Does My Coil Resistance Keep Changing
This article will cover the topic of ''Why Does My Coil Resistance Keep Changing ? ''. Or more precisely why coil readouts change and can sometimes be unpredictable or cause issues with your device.
Coils and What They're Made Of
To understand '' resistance inconsistency '' , you need to understand a bit about what coils are made of :
Coils are made up of strands of resistance wire made of metallic alloy. Metal wire heats up when you vape on it which in turn evaporates your E Liquid to produce vapour. The makeup of the resistance wire is important as it determines how the coils will behave when you heat them up. Typically you will find most coils whether bought over the counter pre-made or in spools of wire for custom builds are composed of one or more of the following :
- Nickel Chromium otherwise known as A1 Kanthal - For use with standard variable wattage mode
- Nickel Ni200 - For use with temperature Control
- Nichrome (Nickel Chromium but heavier on the Nickel ) Ni80 - For use with standard variable wattage mode to decrease ramp up times
- Titanium TI -For use with temperature Control
- ss314 Stainless Steel - For use with temperature Control or Standard Variable Wattage applications (Now the modern standard for factory produced coils)
To see which one you are using, simply check your coil's packaging for any of the above classifications. Then look at how you are trying to run your mod with them. Are you using the correct mode for the type of coil ? If your problem has just been resolved , then that's great ! If not , we'll have to just keep going...
Temperature and What it does to Metals
So Let's go back to basic physics. Metal expands when it heats up and contracts when it cools down. So what does that actually mean for Vapers ? Well , resistance is determined by how wide your conduit or 'pipe' is. So when you have a wider pipe, more water can flow through it. Coil wire is the same. Heat it up and the molecules have more electrons between them causing the conduit to widen and the resistance to drop. When they cool, the electrons have left via your vapour and the conduit shrinks again causing an increase in resistance. This generally accounts for small variances of between 0.1 ohm and 0.2 ohm in A1 Kanthal and in Nichrome 80 as well as SS314. Larger variances usually mean you're either dealing with Ni200 or TI coils or you have a problem with your coil or build.
Troubleshooting Major Coil Readout Issues
Standard Variable Wattage:
First thing's first. Know your device. What coils can it fire, what the minimum resistance load is, what modes does it support. Are you using the correct coil type for the mode you're in ? Have you read the manual ? It really pays to check this stuff out before you panic and think you have a fault or broken device. Check your coil is fitted into your tank or dripper nice and tight. Most issues are related to poor connection. Check it several times.
This is because it may have appeared to be working great before a couple of puffs but since then, you've put it through a heat cycle. It may need an adjustment after that. This is especially true with thicker , complex wire builds like Fused Claptons, Alien wire , Stapled wire or any combination of that sort. As your wire becomes malleable after heating, the post screws often need a little tighten up to take up the slack as the wire flattens inside the posts. If you have a spare coil, ( when using factory coils ) try it, to see if you simply have a faulty coil.
Try your tank or dripper on another device and see what happens there. Basically you need to cross reference for connection errors by process of elimination. If that still doesn't resolve it, then finally check your rubber O rings and isolators. Not so much the ones sealing your tank, but rather the ones isolating your positive and negative/ ground terminals of your coil or atty. The 510 connector is a good one to check as these can be overlooked by manufacturers for heat tolerance. Finally, take time when shaping your coils , if you're building them yourself. The deck may feature PEEK insulators which are heat resistant up to amazingly high temperatures but not all decks have PEEK and the 510 connector is almost guaranteed not to on many RBA's etc. If you dry burn the coils for too long the deck and base of the tank or dripper will get so hot that you could be melting your 510 isolator.
Problems Unique To Temperature Control Modes :
Most temperature control issues come down to calibration. Its actually rather simple. The chip is expecting you to fit a coil at room temperature. So when you screw the tank or dripper on, the chip will ask if you have fitted a new coil. At this point it'll also be asking you what type. Make sure you are fitting your coil at room temperature. Select the correct designation of coil type and BAM, your coil is now correctly installed. Don't go firing it and then re-installing it to your mod at 400 degrees. Your Mod won't understand what's going on and it'll work badly. Likewise if your coil has been in a box in your car in the dead of winter all day, Don't install it like that. Wait until you get to a room with normal temperatures and wait 10 or 15 minutes before you install it.
If you've gone through all the steps and advice above and you're still suffering with issues then you may in fact have a manufacturing flaw in your tank or dripper. Maybe it's a rebuildable atty ,then I presume you know the coils should not be touching the deck or outer wall of the chimney section. If they are then get a mate to slap you 'round the face as that's a "rooky error". Seriously though, if this guide hasn't resolved your issues and you're getting dramatic changes in your resistance readout then take your gear back to the store you purchased from. They will check it over and if they can't resolve it maybe they can swap it out or help you find something better.
Hopefully that has now got you sorted for the '' Why Does My Coil Resistance Keep Changing '' problem.
Coil Building Tutorial
Coil Building Principles Tutorial and Demo
Coil building really doesn't have to be rocket science but if you learn the basics well enough it can truly become an art form. Here we talk about the basics to help people get started but these principles are universal and can be scaled up to any kind of coil build.
Getting Started :
- Get to know your Atomizer. Whether its an RDA ( Dripper ), RTA ( Rebuild-able Tank ) or tank with RBA ( Uses factory coils but has a rebuild-able deck available to use with the tank ) section. Or even if you're simply rebuilding stock factory coil shells. Know the components, particularly on an electrical level.
- Make sure you have good tools. You'll need resistance wire suited to your device. Cutters that can operate in small spaces and a good set of tweezers. Ceramic tweezers are ideal as they are heat resistant and non-conducting . If you try to shape coils with metal tweezers while there is current passing through them they'll short and burn out. That means starting over from scratch. Scissors for trimming your wicks. Coil jig or screwdriver with a diameter supported by your dripper or tank. You can buy these elements separately or in one bespoke kit like the Coil Master or 521 Tab.
- When selecting your resistance wire make sure you don't spend on wire that is too thick for the holes in your posts.
- Invest in good quality organic cotton. Regular cotton can sometimes be treated with bleaches or other agents. You don't want to inhale that sort of thing.
Picking the right wire for your device or Mod Capabilities :
The quality of flavour and amount of vapour you can achieve are determined by two main factors. Coil surface area and airflow. The more of each you can achieve, the more vapour you will get. Achieving more surface area can be done in two ways. Increasing the amount of coil wraps or using more advanced wire sets or multi core wire sets. Clapton wire is an example of a basic multi core wire set. Increasing the wraps or using advanced wire comes at a price. You need more power to drive the coil. Using 5 wraps as an example, here is a rough guide to how much power your device will need to be able to output to use certain wire types:
- Single strand single coil = up to 10 watts or 4 volts
- Single Strand Dual coil = 15 watts to 30 watts or 4.8 volts up to 6 volts
- Dual Parallel Single = 20- 35 watts.
- Dual Parallel dual coil = 30 to 50 watts
- Single Fused Clapton = 50 to 80 watts
- Dual Fused Clapton = 80 to 120 watts ( Requires device with 2 x 18650 batteries or higher to be practical )
- Anything more advanced than a Clapton will require more than 100 watts to drive it properly but you will need to research it as there are ways to reduce the load depending on the makeup of the wire in question. For instance wire sets with N80 composition will reduce your ramp up time and power requirements significantly.
Building requires experimentation to get it just right for your atomizer. As a general starting point if your device has an internal airflow inlet of 2mm diameter then your coil or coils should be about the same diameter. On more modern atomizers where the juice flow inlets are so big they have no relation to the airflow inlets, then about 3.5 mm is the maximum you could feasibly use in most devices presuming you are seating them horizontally in relation to the build deck. Not all devices have enough space for that depending on the wire you are using. So you may have to compromise. I would personally sacrifice using Clapton wire for say, a dual parallel build in order to have a bigger internal coil diameter.But only if the juice flow inlets are capable of keeping up with juice flow supply. If your atty has airflow less than 2.5mm in diameter then you won't need big coils so 2.5mm to 3mm is the maximum I would recommend. This will become apparent when the tank is juiced up and you chain vape on it. If its a dripper, then the only restriction is the available space inside the deck.
Rules for building for safety and just getting it right first time:
- Wrap your coils tightly and neatly on your coil jig. You can determine the spacing later on in the process.
- Clip one coil leg (Excess wire at the ends of the coil) shorter than the other. This makes them easier to seat in the posts.
- Seat your coils as close to the posts as possible without actually touching them or directly over the airflow inlets if it is a bottom blown device like a Kennedy RDA.
- Make sure the coils do not touch the outer wall or chimney section of the atomizer or the deck (bottom of the atomizer) . This would cause a short which is a safety hazard on a mechanical mod and is just "bad joojoo" otherwise.
- Check your Resistance in ohms to make sure there are no shorts which show as 0.0 ohms or significantly lower than you were aiming for. You can do this buy testing firing on most devices with safety protection built in that have an LED screen. For Mechanical mods you will need an ohms reader. This comes in the tool kits I listed above.
- Re check and tighten the post screws as you go along. Tighten until they are snug but not so much that you are forcing them or you risk stripping the screw threads.
- Use short pulses when shaping your coils using ceramic tweezers to bring the wraps closer together or space them apart. Be gentle as the wire is twice a malleable when it's hot.
- DO NOT TOUCH THE COILS while they are hot. You will get a second or third degree burn and it will blister. Do all shaping of the coil once it's on the deck and attached to a mod with your tweezers.
- Make sure your coils glow orange red from the middle outwards. If you get hot spots that will result in spitting Juice like bullets in your mouth when you vape it. The key to avoiding hotspots is even coil spacing.
- When building dual coils make sure both coils are as close to identical in shape, size, amount of wraps and distance from posts as possible. Check that the height from the deck is the same as well.
Wick properly or go home:
You generally get two types of decks in tanks. Tanks with decks that have a juice inlet on either side that is a channel that sits up against the outer chimney. Or you get a gaping hole or holes in the base as an inlet / inlets. Basically your wicks will need to be long enough to just touch the deck but you must not block the juice flow inlets for the first example. Tanks with cyclops inlets , or big gaping holes in the deck work a bit differently. They need the wicks to just about sit inside the holes and for the wick density to be adequate enough to fill the hole itself but not so much that it would be tightly sat inside. In other words there needs to be space for the juice to flow up the strands of cotton. Cotton expands when wet. So you really only want to fill 70 or 80% of the aperture with cotton. Then kind of flush the cotton up a bit so there are no gaps. Which will prevent leakage.
Rules for wicking
- Roll you wicks if you wish. This is required if you are using balls of cotton but if your cotton is from a rectangular pad it is not needed. Do not twist the cotton. This will prevent the juice from wicking properly and may cause dry hits.
- Use only enough so that the wick goes in through the coil snuggly. If it feels so tight that it might move your coil, then you've cut it too thick. Use the external diameter of your coils as a guide as to how thick you should cut your wick. So if your outer diameter of your coil is 4mm (3mm internal diameter) then this should be a good starting width for cutting your cotton.
- Twizzle then end of the cotton to get it through the coil more easily but otherwise try not to interfere with the threads too much. Straight threads wick faster than mangled ones.
- Once the wick is through the coil , and you've trimmed it to suit your deck, fluff the ends up as your scissors will have compressed them. Again this helps wicking.
- If you're using a dripper leave enough length to just touch the base with all the strands . Excess wick kills flavour and wastes juice.
- Never dry fire your wicks. They'll burn and you'll have to start from scratch. Juice them up a bit , until they look soaked. This takes time so be patient . This will help you to seat them properly on your deck in any case.
- Change your wicks and dry clean/ dry burn your coils (without wick in them) every 2 to 3 days or more as required. Sweeter flavours caramelize more. So they may need to be changed daily in some instances.
In theory in any case.
This should be enough to get you through reassembly of your tank and or dripper and you should be able to fill up and start vaping. For unique quirks of each tank that may impact on dry hits or leakage, I suggest checking Youtube for your specific tank. The rules set out here should see you right with 90% of the tanks and drippers on the market though.