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About to throw in the towel

Discussion in 'M-401/402 "Mini" & M403 Super Mini' started by 757girl, Mar 7, 2010.

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  1. 757girl

    757girl Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 22, 2009
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I love the vapor I get from the 401 but the dang atty keeps getting hot after about 3 vapes. I dripped about 3-4 drop of juice on the bridge and it still does the same thing. Since I bought it about 3 weeks ago I have only used it 3 times if that. I am ready to sell it or throw it away. I just hate to say I just gave up on something without trying all avenues.

    Help me please :(
  2. bluesuede

    bluesuede Super Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 28, 2009
    Central PA, USA
    You should try dipping instead of dripping. The atty will soak exactly the right amount. Also keep your cart moist. Attys will heat up. It's the heat that creates the vapor after all. To prevent over-heating just switch between two of them. One gets too hot, put it down, pick up the other one etc. Works for me!
  3. Blaze

    Blaze Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 21, 2010
    Is it still under "warranty". If so, I'd contact your supplier, sounds like it could be a faulty part.
  4. KingVapor

    KingVapor Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 29, 2009
    I always thought a hot atomizer with good vapor was a good thing. A hot atomizer with little to no vapor is a bad thing.
  5. Mammal

    Mammal Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 25, 2010
    Connecticut, USA
    I wouldn't panic - but the atomizer's a consumable part, so it seems like a good idea to have spares around, just in case that's a prelude to it burning out. If it's bothering your fingers, try holding from the battery (it's more balanced that way, anyhey)... though if you're talking 'will leave blisters' hot as opposed to 'uncomfortably warm' hot you might want to ask for a replacement.

    They're a bit rare on the ground until imports pick back up, but RockyMountainVapor is letting them go reasonably [without forcing you to stump for Priority Mail on parts that fit in a regular envelope, so kudos to them and a hint to some of the other vendors with stock]. Mine's still going strong after 2 weeks and one grain-alcohol soak, but I had a scare whacking a cartridge into the braid and realized I should snag spares sooner than later.
  6. 757girl

    757girl Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 22, 2009
    Virginia Beach, VA
    The atty is getting so hot to the point the mouth piece gets hot also. I thought it might be the atty itself so I tried another atty from the same company and the same thing happened...the hotness. Then I also tried an atty from another company same I am thinking that I am doing something wrong.
  7. Mammal

    Mammal Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 25, 2010
    Connecticut, USA
    Hmm, that does seem odd. Manual batteries or automatic, and do you have more than one to test with? (Wouldn't expect a battery to fail in a way that would provide extreme current or voltage, but I haven't seen everything...)

    Do they all look like "Smoore-style" (rounded), or are they the mysterious "SLB" ones?

    Is the cartridge fluff moist to the top (glistening visibly) and making good contact with the bridge?

    Mine has had its hot moments, particularly right after cleaning, but nothing that'd feel hot all the way down the cartridge. The upper lip of the cartridge can get (quite) warm where it fits around the metal of the atomizer, but not burning hot, maybe 'hot mug of tea' hot.
  8. jerrydon10

    jerrydon10 Unregistered Supplier ECF Veteran

    It sounds like you are to me as well. What cools off an atty when it is hot? Well, a couple drops of juice will do it because just like you cool when you sweat, when the juice evaporates, it cools the atty.

    This suggests to me that you are not keeping enough juice in your cart to keep the atty saturated to the point that it can effectively operate.

    I quit dripping months ago because it is a pain in the patutie to mess with constantly.

    I would suggest you figure out what is needed to initially place 15 to 20 drops in your cartridge at the get go and that should do the trick.

    Not knowing what filler or how you are using it in the cartridge disallows further advice in that particular area. But there are several mods on this forum that allow virtually any cart to operate from full to empty.

    Don't get discouraged. There is a learning curve on these e-cigs and we all go through it.
  9. Haytoni

    Haytoni Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 20, 2010
    N.W. Florida
    That works for me also.
  10. asidrave

    asidrave Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 21, 2009
    New Jersey
    i had the same problem with my would heat up quickly and burn my lips and i also hated the whistling sound it makes when taking a draw. i dismissed it quickly and sold it.

    that would happen when i take long draws which i like to do. i stick with the 510, 801 and cartomizers
  11. Mammal

    Mammal Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 25, 2010
    Connecticut, USA
    Hmm. This verges on the dangerously obvious, but... Is the trouble with prefilled carts or are you filling your own?

    I suppose it's possible that self-filled could be coming out too dry if the polyfill isn't getting soaked all the way down. I just tossed this up, since I'd been meaning to:

    ...and what I've been doing is using the 'poking' end of the clip to hold the filler aside, fill it until there's almost a meniscus, lift the fill a little to make sure it's soaked through, then poke it back in, 'fluff' it to the top, and top off with one more drop if it fits. JC sample bottles do have a really handy tiny dropper that can wedge in in the same way. It should really be 'a cup full of liquid with polyfill floating in it to wick it' rather than 'polyfill slightly damp with liquid.'

    Just a thought, because having only a drop or two riding on top of the filler, or having the fill smashed down/atomizer braid smashed flat from using it to push the cartridge cup in might impact wicking.

    If you've been doing all that and it's dead to you otherwise, maybe try giving an atomizer an overnight alcohol soak (agitating well a couple times and before you pull it out) and priming it with 4 drops or so after it's 100% dry... mine's been running hottest immediately after cleaning, but if something's gumming it up and preventing wicking, maybe that'll help.


    Hmm, and "3 vapes" does = 3 drags, right? Because if 'vape' means 'smoke' as-in entire-cigarette-break here, that's about as long as one cartridge lasts.
  12. 757girl

    757girl Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 22, 2009
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Yea 3 drags mammal lol

    I start off with a brand new cart nothing but the white filler and the plastic casing. I push a safety pin through the mouth piece to raise the filler compartment and I take the filling out and fill with liquid. I then place the filler in the liquid and push the filler compartment back down with my safety pin. I drip a couple of drops on a fresh atty after blowing out the primer. I attach the cart to the atty then attach it to the battery.

    Puff Puff Puff...Da**!! I have a Phoenix 401 and it is an automatic. I have tried to use a different battery, different atty....same thing. So now I'm thinking I might not be dripping enough liquid on the atty...So how much should I drip?

    O...and thanks for being sooooo helpful everyone throwing out suggestions.
  13. Mammal

    Mammal Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 25, 2010
    Connecticut, USA
    Weird. The Dragon/Phoenix was specifically called out for using the different atomizer in that thread I linked, so double-check that... and maybe the cartridges - I assume they're normal, but if they were somehow different to match the pointier style, that might be it.

    Only other thought would be to make sure that the polyfill isn't getting compressed out of reach of the atomizer wick ("bridge"), but it sounds like you're on top of that.

    re: primer drops... I can probably get in like 4 drops off a 10ml Dekang dropper-bottle or 2-3 fat ones off the large-size Johnson Creek dropper without seeing any come out the breather hole. I imagine you can go crazy (with the atomizer off the battery) and then Q-tip out the hole if it drips, at which point you'll have a flooded-but-definitely-not-dry atomizer that might spit a few drops back at you before heating up enough to make vapor. The dip would probably get you to a similar place.

    What liquid is giving you the trouble? Maybe it's an unusual batch or something and there's a "compatibility" issue.
  14. Meat

    Meat Full Member

    Feb 17, 2010
    I'd suspect the problem is either the carts, or a too low nic liquid strength.

    I really hate the m401 carts. They dont seem good for much other than whistling and trying to make me drink the juice. I stopped using them after about 2 days, and just went to dripping. The 401 is probably the best and easiest model to drip or dip on anyway.

    The other problem is that they don't burn liquid and thus deliver nicotine quite as fast as the 510 or other well-regarded e-cigs. This is why the battery lasts so much longer on the 401.

    I found once I went to 36mg liquid, and chucked the cartridges away, I was able to slow down my vaping a bit, which means the atty didn't get too hot, or stay hot.

    Heat buildup is normal if you chain-vape too quick, which your body is probably telling you to do to get a decent hit. My 510 actually gets more hot more quick than my 401 if I were to use them for the same duration. It just gives me more vapor and nic, so I don't feel the urge to use it so much it starts to burn me.
  15. 757girl

    757girl Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 22, 2009
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I ended up trying the Halo Newpure liquid that comes with a big dropper instead of just dripping out liquid from the bottle. Now I get about a 10 min session then it starts getting kind of hot. I guess I will just have to keep dripping into the atty using the dropper now.
  16. Ez Duzit

    Ez Duzit Super Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 16, 2009
    Southern California
    I used a 401 for my first 4 months or so of vaping. I've used the auto and manual batteries, and they do get pretty hot if you take 3 puffs, one right after the other. But, then again, so does almost every other e-cig that is made. They are, after all, a thin metal tube with a heating element inside. They're going to get hot without a chance to cool down in between puffs. It's a design limitation. The answer, (assuming it's wicking correctly), is to give it a break for a minute or two when it gets hot, then it should be fine. You can get a ton of vapor out of a 401 with a nice, long, slow, easy puff. Two puffs like that, then give it a break for just a bit. Rinse and repeat.
  17. Mammal

    Mammal Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 25, 2010
    Connecticut, USA
    Hm. Sounds like you've got technique down, really. Try the 'buff puff' filler (Walgreens 'facial scrubbers'), perhaps it'll move the liquid faster for you.
  18. pm2006

    pm2006 Vaping Master Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 24, 2010
    S.E. Michigan
    It looks like you may have missed one thing that MAY help. After I fill my cart and put the filler in (I use aquaclear - aquarium filter), I put one or two more drops on top of the filler to start it wicking. I have never primed the atty and it works for me everytime. Just make sure you dab with a paper towel if any 'pools' on the filler or you will get a mouthful. :?:
  19. rosesense

    rosesense ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Jan 1, 2010
    I had that issue plus a hard draw which heated it up even more. Went to a 510 and it is so much better. Just got an 801 and like it even more than the 510. Gonna sell all my 401 stuff or give it to my son to try. Filling those little carts almost sent me over the edge, I hate to say. My Phoenix sure is pretty but I will just paint pretty things on my other batts and leave the 401 behind.

    Good luck, hope you resolve the issue.
  20. bluesuede

    bluesuede Super Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 28, 2009
    Central PA, USA
    DIP instead!
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