The Vaper's Handbook
by, 08-05-2012 at 07:00 AM (11139 Views)
I am hereby starting a compilation of information that will benefit all of vaperkind. This is the easy button that you can push whether you are a brand new vaper just starting your journey, or if you are a seasoned veteran trying to keep up with the latest improvements to the vaping world. Not only will this be a guidebook of all that I have learned, it will also focus on being frugal without significantly sacrificing quality in the process. If you like what you have read please subscribe to this blog and rate it above. I will be updating it with the rapid changes of the ecig market and will be adding to it almost daily. Use it as a reference guide to fuel your conviction to quit smoking. Before I begin I would like to assure you that I have no affiliations to any brand or vendor. I will strive to give you the truth as I see it.
Before we even begin, if you bought your e-cigarette from a mall kiosk, or you are a member of one of these websites that requires a "subscription" or "membership" accompanied by regular payment on your credit card you have been duped. Do yourself a favor and cancel/get out of that situation ASAP! No self-respecting company does that to its customers. It is a scam. I'm totally sorry you took the hit, but it's time to GO! Read on and you will soon realize the truth of what real vaping is, and it has nothing to do with subscriptions.
About my personal style of teaching, or my opinion in general I refer you to the following quote:
"In battling evil, excess is good; for he who is moderate in announcing the truth is presenting half-truth. He conceals the other half out of fear of the people's wrath."
This means, in short, that I'm not going to lie to you - I am going to give it to you straight, as I see it, without pulling punches for manners, or for the sake of being polite. All of that is meaningless to me. I am here to "learn you proper" and I don't care about anything else. I'm not being paid, I'm not swayed by any company, corporation, or money. All of these things fall on deaf ears. I am here to tell you what I think; besides all else. Take or leave what I say. I really don't care. I'd prefer that you learn, but I'm not going to spoon feed you all nice and stuff. It's my choice to put this to writing, and it's your choice whether or not you want to read it.
I will use a Q and A style format so if you know things already it will allow you to skip to what you don't know. Now let us begin.
Q1: What e-cig should I get to start with?
A1: Any e-cig that pleases you and does the trick of preventing you from going back to analogs is a fine e-cig. If you require me to make a suggestion and name names then I name the Joyetech eGo-C Twist. Why? Because before the eGo-C Twist came out there were only 3 worlds of vaping: low voltage, APV (advanced personal vaporizers) and mods (modified or custom built ecigs). If you didn't have $200+ for an APV you built a mod to get above the entry level low voltage devices. The eGo-C Twist is a revolution because it allows entry level people to afford an APV style vape at a low voltage e-cig price. The APVs on the market, for the most part, have complicated button pushing combinations that make changing the voltage tedious (and at .1v increments). The Ego Twist has a little knob on the bottom and you can literally dial in the voltage you want (at increments less that .1v if you twist it the right way).
Make sure you get a genuine Joyetech eGo-C Twist. There are many knockoffs going around and, in my experience, they are inferior. I will post a detailed analysis as to how to spot a fake in a later post (Page 2, Q53)
Here is a review of the eGo C Twist from a veteran vaper of over 3 years, GrimmGreen of YouTube fame. He owns and reviews almost every ecig available to man and he knows his stuff:
Q2: Well aren't APVs better than the eGo C Twist because they go to 6 volts and the EGO Twist only goes to 4.8v?
A2: APV's (advanced personal vaporizers) have their uses, but overall (to answer the question directly) not in my opinion. At 6 volts you need to have 4.5ohm or more resistance on your atomizers to not damage them and get an extremely hot vape in the process. Atomizers in that high of a resistance are pretty uncommon unless you make them yourself. In fact, if you ask around, you'll find that most of high voltage users have a "sweet spot" that is somewhere within the 4v+ range. That's exactly the range of the eGo C Twist. So why pay more when, in the end, you're both in the same place with only price being the main difference?
Being able to go above the range of the Twist has benefits but this benefit is still very marginal and the average vaper will likely never use it. Unless you have money to burn it's not a great place to start. I strongly believe all vapers should have a Twist in their arsenal. They are powerful, portable, and they grow with you, unlike most of us who have since replaced their first ecig. You will only replace a Twist when it dies. This is money very well spent. That I can guarantee.
Am I suggesting that you shouldn't ever get an APV? No, but I am telling you that as long as you have the eGo C Twist you don't really NEED an APV.
Q3: What kind of atomizer/cartomizer/clearomizer/fluxomizer/tank should I get?
A3: Many times people will suggest the Rebuildable Stardust (EGO Vision Clearomizer) and the Vision Vivi Nova. These aren't bad options, but they're not the best option either. They both have problems. I would recommend that (if you have no choice) these are decent options because they are rebuildable by design, which is a huge money saver. The best option though, at this time, is the E1-V from DiscountVapers.com.
If you must try a cartomizer, or if you are simply in love with them ,then I recommend two brands. The Boge cartomizer, which lives forever is a good place to start (but please refer to the Bogegate post at the bottom of this page before you take a leap). You can clean it for months and re-use it and it seemingly never dies. The other brand is the Smoktech 1.7ohm single coil carto. It has the best vapor production of all the cartomizers. It is a superior vape, but it lacks the durability of the Boge. So, on one hand you have superior durability, which is as frugal as you can get, and the other you have superior quality of vape in a cartomizer. The choice is yours.
306 LR drip atomizers (you need a 306 drip tip for them - 510 drip tips don't fit) are nice to have too so that you can try a juice before you commit it to something more expensive and harder to clean.
Q4: What kind of E-juice should I get to start with?
A4: Fruits and sweets are hard to go wrong with. One thing I definitely recommend against is trying to find a good tobacco flavor that replicates the flavor of the cigarettes you are trying to quit. Why? It doesn't exist. Save yourself a boatload of money, time, and effort searching for the Holy Grail or the Fountain of Youth. Remember why you're here in the first place, TO QUIT. There are some tasty tobacco flavors out there but they're not going to be exactly like a cigarette.
The best ejuice in my opinion is the juice you make yourself. Why? It's way cheaper and you never have to worry about running out. Also, and most importantly, you know what goes into it.
I would recommend that you do start with 70/30 PG/VG blend. This is the most popular and most versatile blend and it will wick well (preventing dry hits) on every atomizer on the market. I will go into PG vs VG later on. As for nicotine strength I will answer that question a little later on as well.
Q5: How do I DIY (Do-It-Yourself) ejuice?
A5: Start with watching videos on youtube. Do a search for "how to diy ejuice". Watch some videos. Once you have an idea of what is going on you are going to need the materials to do it with. You will need the following ingredients: Flavorless Nicotine Solution, PG (propylene glycol), VG (vegetable glycerin), flavoring, and some mixing tools such as empty ejuice bottles (which you can order from just about any supplier), and pipettes or an oral syringe. I recommend http://www.wizardlabs.us as the best source for your nicotine solution and PG, propylene glycol, at this time. For your VG you can get that at Walmart in the pharmacy/first aid section. It is labeled as simply "Glycerin" and sold as a skin softener. It is USP grade and the same exact stuff you can buy for much more on the internet. It sells for just over $3 there (compared to $7+ online). You can also get the oral syringe at walmart (it comes with a 5ml measuring container) for around $2 as well. The pipettes you will have to get online, but I recommend them over syringes because there are no needles to fear, and unlike syringes they never wear out. A syringe with a plunger will eventually either break or lose its seal which renders it useless. Lastly you will need flavors. I will list my opinion on each of the main suppliers in order of my personal preference. I recommend Capella's as your source for flavors because they are right in the middle in cost and quality. Flavourart is the best flavoring, IF you have the money to spend. They are really expensive compared to the others, but you get what you pay for. The Perfumer's Apprentice is really hit or miss. They have some good flavors, and they are the cheapest to get, but it will cost you a lot of money to figure out which ones are the ones you like. I have about a 10% success rate with them. Lorann's uses oils in their flavors which really isn't suitable for vaping because it accumulates on your coils and damages your atomizers. These are the bare minimum things you need to get started DIY'ing.