Thus being sleek & sexy
Brain child of Austrian designer Edi Inverno, The Erlkönigin (pronounced "ERL–KO–NI–GIN") was in the making for a while. Over a year of tweaks, testing and fine tuning bore the results somewhere in the late 2013 ~ and soon became the European talk of the town! Why? B’coz this one is badass! Pls read along for my take on this li’l wonder.
What is it?
A ‘pressure fed’ BC-SRTA (Bottom Coiled Silica based Rebuildable Tank Atomizer). Yes, Kayfunish - but not a Kayfun! In fact it has a lot going inside ~ an innovative deck, a seismologic feed management system and a non-interruptive filling mechanism make it totally different. More on these subsequently.
The Erlkönigin is fully customizable. It comes stock as 21mm (OD), but with the use of it’s optional tanks this beauty can be transformed into a 22mm and/or 23mm atty. And the best part is ~ this change comes without any indentation! Meaning: even with different sized tanks the outer diameter of the Erlkönigin remains ‘uniform’ from head to toe.
Key features & Specs:
1. Diameter: 21 mm, 22 mm, 23 mm (stock 21 mm)
2. Length: 47.5 mm
3. Juice Capacity: 21Tanks=6ml, 22Tanks=8ml, 23Tanks=9ml
4. Unique AFC (can be removed to get completely FREE draw) <The “airiest" atty in my book
5. Non load bearing tank (press-fit but locked)
6. Modular (can be fully stripped and all parts replaceable) <All parts always in-stock
7. Unique deck designed for “Bridge Wicks”
8. Top fill-port (without screws, but locked)
9. Easy to disassemble & reassemble (no thread-lock scenario)
10. Specialized “sure-fed” juice feed system (but will not over-wick!) <More subsequently
12. Fully customizable
Various Modes of the Erlkönigin√
Built and Materials:
The Erlkönigin is an all "stainless steel” atty, with it’s tanks made of either Polymer or Glass or Steel. The stainless steel used is EU certified “surgical grade" 316-SS, which is harder to machine than regular 316 grade stainless steel. The Poly Tank is made of special liquid resistant “copolymer” compound. While the glass tank is made of Borosilicate high-heat bearing Glass. The insulators are all PEEK with a melting temperature of 700ºF (370ºC). The bottom AFC disc is of "medical grade" POM. There are just three O-rings in use ~ two to hold the tank, with one to seal the chimney with the top-cap. This atty is thus one rock-solid, robust and no-nonsense device!
Body Color & Finish:
As pictured above, the finish is media blasted throughout, including it’s innards. Very akin to the Russians and the Wizard Apprentice Evolved by Mark Bugs. The edges are very smooth and typically ‘rounded’. In hand it actually feels very pleasant and seem to be pretty scratch resistant. I’m not sure but there seem to be a clear coating as well over the metal parts. Which kind of gives it a dim but very affable sheen.
Many faces of the Erlkönigin Deck
Detailing is very evident throughout ~ including in its threads
Special Features of the Erlkönigin: It has four (4)!
1. Seismologic Feed Management:*
The feed system is so designed that 'only’ the right amount of juice (and pressure) is maintained under the “Juice Control Ring”, which keeps a certain gap between the tank and the ring. And that gap fluctuates as the pressure underneath it changes ~ letting-in the exact amount of juice into the juice channels - needed to properly wick under whatever type of vaping the user is into. Coupled with the elevated deck design for a “Bridge Wick” the Erlkönigin vapes very well. This is a unique design concept unseen before! There is no gurgling (aka over-wicking) and no dry-hits (aka under-wicking). As such, there is no leaking as well. Pls see my "build explanations" below to know how to set-it-up correctly.
*Disclaimer: My terminology, not propagated by the modder
2. Effective Tank Space Utilization:
Tho the same length as the Kayfun Lite (or the Russian 91%) and 1mm slimmer - the Erlkönigin yet packs-in a whopping 6 ml (0.2 oz) of juice! It is a wonder indeed how well managed the internal space of this atty is. Remember, the meagre 1.5 ml capacity of the Aqua? While it has the same OD (21 mm) and length! Now imagine what the Erlkönigin Nano could be! KFL capacity in nearly half the length! Intrigued? I have requested the modder and he is considering a variant like that! Cool, right?
3. Bottom Disc AFC:
Another first! The AFC ring is actually a thick Black POM “disc” which is “under” the base of the atty. It screws/unscrews inside the ‘well’ of the base and can be totally closed (I couldn’t do it, but the modder says so. But hey, we don’t need closed airflow anyway!) to a lung-inhalable fully open draw. This AFC disc can also be ‘removed’ completely if one desires and obtain a free-flow airy condition. Coupled with the “teeth” all around it’s base’s periphery the Erlkönigin actually looks badass! It also thus can be pleasantly used on a flat top mod (one without air slots) and yet be equally airy. Besides, it sits flush over anything and those grooved-inlets are still aesthetically pleasing. Nice touch there√
4. Top Fill-Ports without screws:
What with the need of a phillips screwdriver to open the fill-hole of a Kayfun! The Erlkönigin does away with that jing-bang and takes cue from the GP SnP tanks. A simple 45º twist of the top-plate (which also serves as a wrench to open the tank lid, pic below) is all you need to unravel the fill-ports. Then fill with ease thru a pointy bottle or use a syringe / needle top bottle. There are two holes, one for filling and the other acts as an air-escape vent. Uniqueness: tho the deck’s juice inlets are open right below this fill-method still doesn’t flood the chamber! Viva that "feed management system" discussed above! Simple and easy to load/unload your liquid(!) ~ a welcome move indeed!
Assembly / Disassembly:
Remove the drip tip. Use the top-plate as wrench to unscrew the tank-cap.
Remove the tank-lid and push the chimney downwards to dislodge the tank from the base. And Voilà!
It is the finer details which endears the Erlkönigin so much. That corroborates to their shipping as well. The package comes in a cardboard box with each item neatly tucked inside in it’s own box. Here’s some images of my unboxing.
a) The Erlkönigin by itself comes extremely clean. Before packaging each unit undergoes Ultrasonic Cleaning and thus there are no burrs, machine oil or any foreign object attached to the unit. That includes all it’s spares like drip tips, adapters, Pos Pole set etc.
b) The basic package consists of just the Erlkönigin with a copoly tank, a black Delrin drip tip and a 510 Replacement Connector.
Spare Parts & Accessories:
Besides the stock Black Delrin DT (which is good) there are two more beautiful & functional DTs offered by the modder.
1. Black Delrin DT; 2. The Crown DT (SS); 3. The Ring DT (SS)
Note: The un-numbered drip tip is my own (Atmomixani Shorty) and placed there for comparision.
2. 510 Drip-tip Adapters:
Yes, use your own drip-tips! There are two Driptip Adapters sold as optional accessories. One is straight cut - called the 'Cone’, while the other has bevelled edges at the top - called the ‘Crown'.
3. O-rings and Bottom Airflow Pos-Pole Sets:
Another feature of the Erlkönigin is you can do away with its AFC and use the optional Airflow Pos-Pole set to modify the atty to draw air from the bottom (mod’s top cap) if you so desire. And albeit, using a mod with a ‘slotted’ top cap.
4. Stainless Steel & Glass Tanks:
We also have the option to purchase three Metal Tanks and two Glass Tanks. Metal tanks are 21mm, 22mm and 23mm. While the Glass tanks are both 21mm. The metal tanks come in "media blasted” finish (The Russian RBA type), while the glass ones are ~ (1)Clear Tank, (2)Frosted Tank.
Uniform OD with any tank:
Note the bottom of each steel-tank section is so devised that the base of the Erlkönigin inserts inside the tank completely - with any dia of tank used. Pls note the plain internal indentation in the bottom of the tubes, which seats the base.
RE-BUILDING & SETUP
Hereunder are the pictures of my standard Microcoil & Cotton setup, which performs tremendously well in the Erlkönigin.
A. Main components Layout:
Note: The deck can be further stripped down to its bare bones. But for all practical purposes we do not need to dismantle it any further. However, there are YT videos showing how to do it.
B. Microcoil Prepared:
28G Kanthal, 8/9 wraps over a 2mm Allen Key, 1.42Ω
C. Coil Resistance Check:
D. Coil Mounting on the Erlkönigin:
The mounting process is very simple. Just place the drill bit with the coil over (along) the "raised wick channels” of the deck. It is so sized that our coiling drill bits perfectly fit within. Thus eliminating chances of mangling up the coil. Then holding the coil & the bit with one finger wrap the wire tails around the positive & negative terminals. Continue to hold the coil and tighten the screws up.
E. Coil Height from the deck's Air-hole:
I’m maintaining a (roughly) 3 mm of gap between the bottom of the coil and the deck, which gives me the right VTF and wicks well. After attaching the coil into the terminals you can pull-it-up using the same drill bit before removing the bit.
F. Build Test Fired:
G. Cotton Wick Insertion, Sizing and Trimming:
IMPORTANT: The Erlkönigin needs the least amount of wick-tails down its juice channels. Whatever you think is the least - cut it down further! I split the wick tails in half with a scissor, then snip-off one half (both sides of the wick). The remaining half is then thinned down at it’s ends keeping the area around the coil more fluffy. See the picture below:
H. Juicing up the Wick and Vapor Test:
Tons of Vapor!
J. Tucking-in the juiced Tails:
Note: The wick-tails should be within the “vertical" juice channels ‘only’. Nothing should go outwards in the horizontal plane.
IMPORTANT: Pls remember to place the “Feed Control Ring” (2nd pic above) now before placing the chimney. This is very important to get the correct juice flow inside the chamber. Pls remember I've stated this before as well - in the Special Features above. This ring also helps in keeping the wick-tails within the juice channels and avoids them getting caught in the threading when the chimney is screwed-in.
This is how it should look final when the “Feed Control Ring” is positioned.
K. Vapor Check after the Chimney is attached:
I took a draw before assembling the Tank ~ and Wow!
L. Tank inserted and Filling up:
Note: For refilling you don’t need to take out the drip tip. I’m doing so b’coz it is the first fill since rebuilding, as I’ve not yet attached the DT.
M. Ready to Vape!
Presenting the Erlkönigin!
Vape Experience & THOUGHTS:
I have a tendency to compare everything to my Kayfuns. They give me a wholesome vape. So does this Erlkönigin! On VTF* it is very similar to the Kayfuns with a shade of better flavour. I have used it side by side with one of my K’Lites having the same build and juice for a full day - thus I know. Ample of vapour ~ and the TH is also spot on as it should be for the juice & nic level. But my biggest happiness comes from it’s ease of use. Damn that fill-port is so handy! Coupled with the way its tank can be swiftly dismantled to re-wick ~ this Erlkönigin is twice the charm! And what with the cool AFC ~ I removed it completely and was immediately exhaling huge clouds Pinoy style! Not my style ~ but very plausible with this RBA. Overall I remain amazed by its vape experience!
*Vapor, TH, Flavor
Pros and Cons:
PRO √: Feature rich. Beautiful. Awesome juice feed (never go gurgling or dry-hit). Easy to Disassemble. Charm to refill. Fully customizable (width, tank material, as well as drip tips). Smooth and flavourful vape. Does not leak.
CON X: Nothing serious that could take away its charm, but the fact that it comes stock in 21mm could put-off a few vapers. Yes, it could be flush exteriored as 22mm or also 23mm ~ but those require purchase of additional tank sections. Secondly, the AFC disc is a cool feature ~ but could be a Pita to unscrew if tightened too much. Not a deal-breaker tho b’coz once set we usually do not need to tinker - and it doesn’t move by itself.
-Price: €121.67 EUR (Device = €106.25; Shipping = €15.42)
-Transportation: International Expedited Parcel. Reached me in five (5) days.
-Where: The Erlkönigin-EK-001
Some “Ideas to Reality” this atty is indeed! i2r GmbH is the name of this company btw! A perfect, near 10/10 rebuildable atomizer Imho. I got wind of it thru a post (and PMs) at Vapor Wall ~ did some research, got intrigued and contacted the modder for some more info. AND he responded in seconds, clarified everything. I was already sold on this RBA ~ but his astounding customer service got me to make my purchase within a few hours of my find. And boy, did I do good! For a single-coil design atty the Erlkönigin is a superior vape. Fully customizable, modular, built very well and some Killer looks! Its also is easy to rebuild, maintain and refill, which put together trumps the Kayfuns! Btw, for a Wizard’s Apprentice Evolved the Erlkönigin is a match made in heaven ~ same hue & tint and same diameter.
Till the 'next big thing’ happens - this Erlkönigin is my current favourite atomizer
The Name: Erlkönigin is the female counterpart of Erlkönig, which means the “King” in German. Erlkönigin thus means "the Queen”. Der Erlkönig is a famous & popular poem by Von Goethe. The term Erlkönigin is also used in German to refer new cars being launched, which are transported draped in “black & white” masking covers. The modder selected this name b’coz it connotes being mysterious, feminine and looking forward to something “new".