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New Calculator to try

Discussion in 'DIY E-Liquid' started by HotRod19579, Oct 16, 2013.

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  1. WhiteHighlights

    WhiteHighlights Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 26, 2013
    Boston, MA, USA
    Thanks @IDJoel ! I'm in awe. I don't have as many flavors as you do (I'm working on it though LOL). I can see converting to that type of system down the road. Maybe get a rolling tool chest and fill in the drawers and have space for other stuff in a a larger storage section. I've got my flavors organized but still have mixing things in multiple places. I dream!
     
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  2. 28if

    28if Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    To me the absolute BEST part of the calculator has to be Storage Location. With over 400 concentrates I would be a mess without it.

    Not shorting anything else about this calculator because it is simply the best, well programmed calculator out there.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. Ric alexander

    Ric alexander Full Member

    Sep 28, 2010
    Swansea uk
    Just downloaded this calculator and its brilliant. Yes i can use ELR but i like to have an offline option.
    Great that you can just go to flavours in ELR and get the gravity of a concentrate and create it in the calculator too.
    But, What i want to know is this. Its been discussed quite a bit from what i see but this 1 gram=1ml thing, A lot of flavours are higher, so even though easier to some, surely it makes more sense to set the gravity to the same as pg? I know it doesnt matter if its all about continuity but when you see notes on flavours and % suggestions, surely the 1:1 rule is actually adding more work due to having to calculate the extra amount youd have to use whereas the pg value will at least start you off a lot closer to the recommended amounts?
     
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  4. G-Fog

    G-Fog Senior Member ECF Veteran

    @Ric alexander that is what I do, just set the flavours to PG SG.
    I've been doing that for years and it works for me, and it's as near as makes no difference.
    I certainly wouldn't be able to tell the difference.
     
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  5. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    It really is a matter of personal choice. At first, I thought I wanted to input all the "true" S.G. figures (at least those I could find) and be as accurate as I was willing/able. But, then I started to think about it. How "correct" are those figures? How much might they fluctuate from batch to batch? Do they get corrected (reposted) whenever there is a formula change? How precise are they to begin with? How precise Is my scale? Will it really make a difference?

    Then, adding to that; I started thinking about the majority(?) of others just using the default 1mL=1g "standard." My choosing a different method would automatically add yet one more variance to other's recipes. It would also insert an automatic variant to any recipe I might choose to share (unless I spelled out the weight difference(s)).

    That, combined with being inherently lazy:facepalm:, and I decided 1mL=1g was good enough for me.:D

    If you don't use a lot of other's recipes, don't share recipes, and/or don't care; using a true specific gravity will give you more accurate results. If you enjoy paying attention to the minutiae of such details; go for it.:thumb:

    I don't think it will make an individual a better mixer. And, I don't think it eliminates the need to still tweak a recipe to one's own particular palate. But, if it makes mixing more enjoyable or rewarding, then do it.

    As far as using the default weight of PG (or VG for VG based flavor concentrates); the calculator has the ability to do this for you.

    For new ingredients (not yet added):
    Go to "Tools" --> "Options" --> "ingredient defaults" tab, and fill in your desired default weight in the "Grams per mL" box:
    upload_2018-8-30_22-30-20.png
    This sets the default value for all future ingredients you may add. Note: They can always be altered in the ingredient window; for any odd ones that do not apply.

    For existing ingredients:
    Click on the "ingredients" tab near the top of the home screen. Then, you can either manually enter a value in the "grams per mL" box" (#1). Or, use the automatic "Calculate weight based on PG/VG %" button found just to the right of the weight box (#2).
    upload_2018-8-30_22-38-16.png

    I am not aware of a means to apply the auto-figure to all existing ingredients at once. :(
     
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  6. Ric alexander

    Ric alexander Full Member

    Sep 28, 2010
    Swansea uk
    Thanks fella. Yeah Im not fussed on the idea of entering every SG I guess. Im leaning towards using the PG value on my own recipes, and then editing flavours if i copy some from online scources to 1:1.
    As a beginner i feel the need to get close to flavour profiles i see written by others until i start learning more about this aspect of mixing.
    Once i start getting a little knowledge then yes, I can ignore manufacturer recommendations and user notes but with so many flavours going more towards the pg value, i just thought it would at least get me a little closer to how other more experienced people would use flavours and maybe, just maybe, help to reduce my faliures buy a tiny amount.
    The trouble is, ive read loads of articles, gone looking at SG sheets by companies, and 1:1 is just sending alarm bells off by my poor brain cell.

    Edit: I rudely forgot to say thank you for a wonderful post. Really appreciated it even though i played and figured out the settings before posting my silly newbie post lol.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Ric alexander

    Ric alexander Full Member

    Sep 28, 2010
    Swansea uk
    Yep, as i posted a previous reply, I can see my going pg value for now. I forgot to add i have permanant damage to my tastebuds and having sinusitus doesnt help matters so judging the fine tuning of what i need to do to improve a recipe can be quite daunting.
     
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  8. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    Using a PG based weight value will likely get a person closer to a true(er?) result. Especially if comparing to measuring by volume.

    As for adjusting/modifying other's recipes; if I am being honest with myself... is really just a complete crapshoot. Very few posting authors think to share how they are measuring (volume, weight, counting drops, ???). And, even if they do... what variables are they using/introducing?

    Are they measuring by volume? How? Syringes, calibrated pipettes, graduated cylinders, something else? What are the manufacturer's acceptable tolerances of that/those devices (did you know a medical/pharmacological syringe has a nominal tolerance of 5%? And that is before any user-introduced error.)? How much variance is being introduced by the user? Things like: material left cling to the sides; measuring below, above, or on, the graduation; and angle at which the graduation is viewed at. All of this can add unintended variables.

    Are they measuring by weight? What is the scale's precision? What is the scale's tolerance (acceptable variance)? Did they actually over/under pour (and if so; by how much? And, was it accounted for?)? Is the scale calibrated? How true/accurate are the calibration weights (I was amazed to find out that cheaper calibration weights can have as much as a 10% "acceptable" variance. And using coins for calibration? Those are even worse.)?

    How do all these possible variables interact? Do they cancel one another out? Do they compound? Maybe some of Both? Are they slight and imperceptible? Or, are they significant, and immediately recognizable?

    I mention all that, just to show, that short of using a certified scientific lab; there just really any practical means of absolute accuracy. This is why many of us focus on repeatability... the ability to do the same thing, time after time, and get the same/similar results.

    Now, to add to all the above confusion; include your own preference and perception of taste.

    I am not a particularly creative person. And as such; I mostly use other's recipes as a starting point. Out of nearly 5 years of DIY, and the countless recipes I have tried; I can count on my thumbs, the number of recipes I have not had to alter, to taste their best to my own particular palate.

    So, what has all this trying to control/account for precision, actually done for me? Darned if I know.:blush::D

    It is only my opinion; but, I think using a PG based weight, is as good as any "average" to use, and stop thinking about it. A person could suck all the fun and desire out of DIYing by getting hung up on covering all the minutiae.;)
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. Ric alexander

    Ric alexander Full Member

    Sep 28, 2010
    Swansea uk
    OMG, I think thats what i needed. The realisation of so many variables just blew my theory out the window.
    Ok. Great reply thank you, and adds weight to the fact you basically have to take any recipes you see shared as just a guide. With such in depth replies im definately gonna settle for pg value now. Ive entered the amounts into the calculator and everytime i get that urge to look up an SG, im gonna just shout at myself and ignore me LOL.
    This is gonna be a loooong old road to travel and i wonder to myself how many people have tried mixing and just given it up after having many bad results.
    Ill use the calculator and just try to create a tobacco base that is suitable to introduce flavours to ( obviously not the same standard, but a similar concept to manabush liquids which used to be my all day vapes).

    Thanks again. I hope i still feel as brave tomorrow ( saturday) when i pull the new scales out and start experimenting!:eek:
     
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  10. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    That is a bummer of a combination for vaping. At least for tasting anything in a vape.:(

    Whenever I have a cold, I'll not even waste my time with flavored e-liquids, and just vape unflavored (Nic, PG, and VG). Flavored liquids either have no taste, or only certain (often unpleasant) notes manage to sneak through. Unflavored satisfies my nicotine cravings, and the hand-to-mouth fixation, just as well. And it is less expensive, and faster to make. I can't say it is particularly exciting; but it works for me.:D

    I would suggest holding off on experimenting with any new recipes, and/or ingredients, until the sinusitis has cleared up. Unless that is a permanent state as well.

    If that is "normal" for you; then learning what you can and can't taste, is just going to have to be a part of your learning curve. Single flavor test vaping might be the most informative method. Once you know which concentrates work for your restricted palate; you can then focus on combining those, for more interesting/pleasing recipes.:)
    Best wishes!:toast:
     
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  11. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    I am about as anal-retentive as they come. When I first started DIYing; I was absolutely fixated on being "accurate" as possible. Then I realized all the things that were with outside my control, and/or budget, and finally adapted a more realistic approach that worked for me.:blush:
    Exactly that!:thumbs:
    I just mentioned the measuring variables. I did not mention hardware variables, temperature variables, or airflow variables. Each of these can influence the way any given e-liquid might taste.

    Someone who is using an old school ciga-like, at low wattage/temp, and tight airflow, may get an entirely different flavor; than someone using an ultra modern mod, at high wattage/temp, and unrestricted airflow. This too, is rarely disclosed.

    A "starting point" is the best we can hope for/expect.:)
    I would guess quite a few. Not understanding the potential for variables, along with unrealistic expectations, and a complete lack of understanding about specific ingredients; all lead to a potential for discouragement and failure. Thinking about it; it is a miracle anyone succeeds at all.:shock:

    Having modest expectations, and a willingness to fail (and learn from those failures), can make the process less discouraging... for me anyway.:)

    Being a great DIYer doesn't automatically happen overnight. It takes practice, patience, and a willingness to experiment and learn (from both successes, and failures). Some catch on quickly. There are more than a few, here on ECF, who started mixing years after I did. And, they have already become much better, and more knowledgeable mixers, than me. Part of it may be some sort of "natural" talent; but much of it comes from investing the time and effort to learn their ingredients, and how to maximize their usefulness for their own needs/preferences.
    Just do yourself a favor; and keep things small and simple to start. Small (5-10mL) unimpressive batches are a lot easier to forgive, than 50-100mL batches. Learning what works, and doesn't, is much easier with a 1 or 2 flavor mix; than in a 10 ingredient recipe.

    Remember, that internet recipes are not all equally "good." Many are works in progress, abandoned, or even just "ideas" that have not even been practically tested. Give more weight to those recipes that have significant amounts of feedback by those that have actually taken the time to mix it ("that looks good" comments don't count!).

    Also remember, that even if 100 other vapers like a recipe; it is no guarantee that it will work for you. Don't get discouraged. It doesn't mean the recipe is bad. It doesn't mean you did something wrong. It just wasn't the right fit for you. Which brings me to my next suggestion...

    Know when to quit a recipe. Some may be completely wrong... move on. Some may be okay in some ways... perhaps file away for future consideration. Some may be pretty good... and worthy of further effort and tweaking. And, some may be great just the way they are... don't fiddle with them (unless it is purely for the purpose of experimentation).

    I will quit pontificating now; as I have run completely :offtopic:.

    Keep it simple, be kind and forgiving to yourself, and keep your expectations modest. Above all; keep your mixing fun! Remember that DIYing is a journey... and enjoy the ride!!!:D:toast::D
     
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  12. G-Fog

    G-Fog Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Very well witten @IDJoel .
    That could well be the best intro to DIYing that I have read, and it should be required reading for all those starting on the exciting, often frustrating, yet very rewarding journey that is DIY mixing.
    Thanks for taking the time to share.
     
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  13. Ric alexander

    Ric alexander Full Member

    Sep 28, 2010
    Swansea uk
    WOW, Brilliant, thanks again. You've convinced me. Two, or maybe really adventurous with 3 flavour recipes is where i'm headed. I don't think i'm going to get deeply into recipes with more than say 6 flavours anyway due to my lack of being able to distinguish very slight flavours.
    I think if i can get a simple tobacco base recipe so i can add an additional flavour such as coffee, honey, or other single flavours and a simple cheesecake base to do the same will suffice me. Hell if i can get those two id be absolutely delighted.
    So, every flavour is now having a value of 1.038 from here on, and armed with this superb calculator, my 501 scales, and a very nervous brain cell, Im armed and dangerous.
    Let the games commence !:danger:
     
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
  14. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    I said I'd stop; but I can't seem to help myself.:facepalm:

    I don't know how you are fixed for empty mixing bottles, but if you have plenty, don't underrate the usefulness of testing single flavors (aka. "single flavor testers" or "sft"s). For me at least; they can be most informative. It is a great way to learn what percentage I like them best at (on my hardware, my vaping style, and my palate preferences). And it provides the clearest picture (for me) of what that particular concentrate is contributing (and/or lacking) to a potentially more complex mix.

    SFTs don't need to be big batches. Often, 3 or 4, 5 to 10mL testers, at various percentages; gives me plenty to test vape several times throughout a month. I can learn what they taste like, and what I might what to combine with them, and at what point (for me) I might want to start vaping them (immediately, after a day or three, after a week, or maybe it requires 2,3 or even more weeks) to develop all its potential.

    Which leads to the second important DIY "rule" I forgot to mention. WRITE DOWN EVERYTHING YOU DO. I can't stress note taking enough. It doesn't matter how you do it. Binders, note books, index cards, or on the computer. This is the best (only?) way to remember all that works; and what doesn't too.

    I can't think of anything more frustrating, than making the holy grail of e-liquids, only to not remember how you did it. It happens more often than you might think.:blush::D
    Sounds like a good way to begin. Do you already have some concentrates you are going to start with? Or, are you still shopping? Which concentrates will you be working with?
    I wish you a long, satisfying, rewarding DIY journey! :D
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Hoggy

    Hoggy Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 6, 2013
    WI, USA
    Hmm.. I seem to keep missing new reply notifications..

    Although I don't know of a way to apply an auto setting.. For those not aware, I think there is a way to apply a set # to all ingredients - say, 1gm/ml or 1.038gm/ml.
    If you use the Juice File Maintenance utility and select an ingredient and choose "Edit Ingredient", the following dialog will show up: (with my excellent mousemanship skills)

    upload_2018-9-15_18-4-10.png

    I've never used this feature, so test it out first, after a backup. Although it says "Apply grams to all recipes", it is also under the heading of "Apply to all ingredients". That may be a 'quirk' of the utility.. I don't know.

    Theoretically, that may allow you to change from individual SG settings (as I currently have it) to something like 1gm/ml.
    (Although it isn't important to me, as I have to mix by volume no matter what, I've filled out the SG fields with what I found at ELR (or elsewhere). But to me it's simply because the field exists, I might as well fill it with what I find. :D )

    .................

    And like said, I find the Location field indispensable!
    As the proud new father of several hundred bouncing baby flavorings (mix of 1, 4 and 16-ouncers), it's going to become even more vital. So many that I even had to splurge for a P-Touch labeler for my rebottling efforts. It will take me many months, I think. :(
    Whomever says DIY is cheaper, does not know the rabbit hole that can be flavor hoarding addictions. :smokie:
     
    • Winner Winner x 2
  16. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    Good tip, @Hoggy!:thumbs: I haven't ever worked up the nerve to play with the File Maintenance Utility and keep forgetting it is there.:facepalm:

    Thanks for speaking up!!:D
    Good grief! Several hundred!? All at once? I don't envy you cataloging that mass.:eek:

    I have had a few 50(ish) flavor orders, and even one as high as 76, but never anything in the hundreds. All I can say is... "Best wishes!";):D

    The thing I will be most curious to see; is how often you still run into the dreaded "I want to mix your recipe; but I am X ingredients short." I have nearly 400 concentrates in my stash, and I still seem to run into that, more often than not.:-x
    Ain't that the God's honest truth!:facepalm: :lol::lol::lol:
     
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  17. Hoggy

    Hoggy Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 6, 2013
    WI, USA
    It's actually much worse than just cataloging, as if that wasn't bad enough as is. :( Every single one of them will have to be transferred into amber glass bottles with phenolic polycone caps. Places like Wizard Labs and Hartland have all switched to polypropylene labels, so I can peel them off the old bottles and put them on the new. But Bull City remains as stubborn as a bull and uses god-awful paper labels which rip and get ugly - making the PC-connectable Brother P-Touch so indispensable at this point, with all-laminated labels to boot.

    To make matters worse yet, I've been stuck at a stand-still with the 4oz bottles, since the place I just ordered my slew of glass bottles from didn't ship the 4-ouncers in boxes with dividers (like I was told they would). So I've been waiting a couple months to order divider boxes that hold 48 each from them, since they've been out of them. There was one other place that sold divider boxes that held 64 each, but their minimum order was 40 of them - which was not only WAY too many, but was also about $250 or so. The place I've been waiting on, has a minimum order quantity of $50, so I could wait for them for 16 of the 48-box at ~$50 - which is much more reasonable for my needs. I'm finally waiting on the shipping estimate from them, so hopefully I'm getting closer to getting them!

    But I think labeling boxes as "Chocolates 2", or "Citrus 4" as I've been doing may be rather counterproductive going forward, unless I use a smaller label, after the fact. So far, I seem to be going with box labels of "[bottle-ounces] - [box-quantity] - [box #]", then I think I'll label one corner on the top as "1", to indicate where column 1, row 1 is - and go spreadsheet-style from there.

    Though I think it's fair to say my future will include much of my favorite dance: The Flavorbox Shuffle. :)

    And that's already happened many times (albeit getting fewer), where someone mentions a good-sounding flavor I don't have (nor anything similar that would just be 'good enough'). ... I'm like "F**k you very much!" - as I head over to Hartland or Wizard to add it to a future cart. :rolleyes: Ehh, such is the life of a flavor junkie.

    ... But this is why I'm starting to get more 1-ouncers lately - it seems seems like a happy medium between "so little I don't want to play with it" and "if I don't like it, I'm stuck with 4 ounces of it". Although I do tend to find some arcane uses for flavors I don't like, as my library keeps growing they'll simply pile up too fast.. And I only have a super-tiny 400 sq.-foot apartment.
     
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
  18. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    Holy moley! This thread has found its way all the way back to page 4.

    Time for a gentle nudge.:D:laugh::D
     
  19. WhiteHighlights

    WhiteHighlights Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 26, 2013
    Boston, MA, USA
    I need to reorganize my stash again (!) and want to add the stock location to each ingredient. Is there an easy way to see that when you're looking at the recipe rather than pulling up the ingredient individually to check? I know you have an extensive stock of flavors, what do you do?
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. IDJoel

    IDJoel Ultra Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 20, 2015
    Boise, ID
    I considered adding it to the flavor name; as in "Apple (1-G-23)(TFA)." This would allow the location to appear in the flavor name box. But, it was just too cumbersome for my tastes. And, if anyone is working from a small screen (like a tablet, or smart phone) it would likely remain hidden.

    So, I left it in the location field. It is not a big deal really, to see it. One of the later upgrades HotRod added; was a "hot key" function, that is activated by right clicking on the flavor name field (in a recipe). This opens a drop down menu. Click on the second to the last line item; and the ingredient window automatically opens to that specific window, and thereby displays the location. Close it; and move on to the next one:
    upload_2018-10-6_22-36-26.png
    upload_2018-10-6_22-37-57.png

    That is what works best for me.:D
     

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