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Sattec's atty cleaning test thread

Discussion in 'Experiments With Equipment' started by sattec, Sep 5, 2009.

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  1. Barum

    Barum Full Member

    Aug 1, 2010
    Rhode Island
    I'm sure someone has mentioned this elsewhere on this forum, but even strong vodka has "other" things in it.

    *IF* it is legal in your state/country/protectorate, then try to get your hands on Everclear. It is rated at 190 proof, or 95% straight up grain alcohol. A pint of the stuff should last a long time in this application.

    Word of advice: While Everclear is, in fact, MEANT to be ingested.... Well... Maybe you should use the "buddy system" if you decide to try it straight.
  2. rockyroad

    rockyroad Life is Good Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 30, 2010
    I did the blow the atty and burn method, took about 5 minutes. Soaked in hot crest for about 15 minutes and noticed there were no flakes and hardly any discoloration. lightly shook and stirred about 10 times. Removed, blew out through the battery end, rinsed in tap water then given a rum soak for about a half hour. Blew out the rum from both ends and blown dry with hair dryer. The only thing that is apparent (as I did 2 attys, one l.r. and one reg, both 510) is that I found out which one was actually the l.r. atty. I couldn't tell the last couple days because they were both hitting the same on my S.B. P.T.
    So I guess it did help in that respect but the draw is still tight. Next time I will wait until an atty is pretty much unbearable to use and see what happens.;)
  3. nash076

    nash076 Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Apr 28, 2009
    I use 901 atomizers. Tried the CPH. Two atomizers are sitting for an overnight soak in warm water; one of them I went ahead and rinsed thoroughly, blew and burned dry, reprimed and tested. So far it's working incredibly well; it's not one of my oldest atomizers, but it's been around a while. It's working close as close to new as I can tell.

    The others might turn out better after the overnight soak and dry. There's still a little minty taste on this one, but not overpowering and it's fading as I use it. I've tried hydrogen peroxide, burning, and vinegar . . . of all the methods, this one's worked the fastest and pretty well.

    More when the other two are ready.
  4. nash076

    nash076 Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Apr 28, 2009
    All right, the other two atomizers have dried. Re-primed and tested. It's not as good as new, but it's pretty damned close. No mint aftertaste from the overnight soak. Definitely serviceable units again. I'm going to keep using this method. Thanks!
  5. Little Girl

    Little Girl Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 29, 2010
    New York
    It's also the cheapest solution since we all have water. :banana:

    Afterthought: ...except for those pesky nomads...;)
  6. dspin

    dspin Vaping Master Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 2, 2010
    Jeeze, I just blew out a 510 10 times, blowing and vaping twice. Can't believe how much juice was really in there. Thanks
  7. No Brag

    No Brag Super Member ECF Veteran

    Oct 12, 2010
    sattec: I agree with the blowing out of the excess fluid, but do it in a different way. Instead of taking the battery off several times, I simply point the ecig up in the air and take several long draws. Then use it in the usual way and if it needs more I tip the end up and some more long draws. Its doing the same thing without taking the battery off. The juice runs down while you take a quick long draw. Try that and let me know what you think.
    I haven't tried the mouth wash yet, but will when I get to town to get some. I appreciate someone who takes the time to do what you did before they give their opinion. Some people do something once then give their opinion before trying it again and finding out the first time was a fluke.
  8. No Brag

    No Brag Super Member ECF Veteran

    Oct 12, 2010
    1204101754.jpg I tried your Crest treatment today on 2 atty's that I had just cleaned the ordinary way. Here is a pic. of what came out of what came out.

    Sorry about the picture quality, I took it with my phone.
  9. perlguy9

    perlguy9 Full Member Verified Member

    Oct 29, 2010
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Will cleaning an atomizer with mouthwash get rid of the burnt taste? Ive got stock 510 atomizers that I drip with and two of them have developed a horrible burnt taste / smell.
  10. No Brag

    No Brag Super Member ECF Veteran

    Oct 12, 2010
    After I got those 2 attys cleaned and rinsed last night, I decided that a good place to dry them would be in the heat exchanger of my shop wood stove. The exchanger catches some of the heat that would be lost up the chimney and blows it into the room. Nice warm blowing air that should dry them. I left them in and went to bed. This morning it was really cold so the first thing I did when I got to my shop was start the wood stove. Then sat down to check up on ECF to see what was going on. I didn't think about the attys till I got the smell of burning paint. By the time I got the attys out of the exchanger the paint had bubbled up on them and was burnt in places. What a way to start a day. After I cooled down and the attys cooled some too, I decided to try them to see what they would do. I primed the first one and put it on a battery. Nothing. I re-primed it and had a big cloud of vapor that tasted like burnt paint. By the third drag that taste was gone!!! I tried the other atty with the same results. I have been using the first one all day and its been great, just looks like h=ll. I took some time today and made a basket that I can hang in front of the exchanger so this won't happen again. I also cleaned the rest of my attys with the Crest Pro and rinsed them and dried them.
  11. oldsoldier

    oldsoldier Retired ECF Forum Manager Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Dec 17, 2010
    Lurking in the shadows
    So far I haven't seen a reply to the question about using this technique with just glycerin since it is the major ingredient of the mouthwash. Has anyone actually looked into it?
  12. Little Girl

    Little Girl Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 29, 2010
    New York
    Not officially - at least not in comparison to using mouthwash, which I've never tried - but I've used glycerin in my e-cigarettes for half a year now, so I like to think of myself as somewhat of an authority on how it behaves. :2cool:

    I can tell you for sure that if you have a flavor "stuck" in an atomizer, you can vape glycerin in it repeatedly to get that unwanted flavor to eventually leave. :thumbs:

    What I can't tell you :?: is whether the same is true if you were to vape PG in it, although I'd assume it would work just as well.

    The liquid with the smallest molecules will do the best job. Since glycerin is thick, I would think it can't do nearly as nice of a job cleaning an atomizer as water can. There are some mighty tight nooks and crannies inside of an atomizer. 8-o

    The magic is still in the basics:
    1. Soak it for a few minutes in hot water.
    2. Agitate it by shaking the container of water it's in or by filling it mostly full with water and shaking it while covering both ends with your fingers.
    3. Rinse it thoroughly under hot, running water.
    4. Blow out as much liquid as you can.
    5. Leave it somewhere with good ventilation for at least 24 hours to dry.
  13. emus

    emus Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jun 9, 2009
    I don't use CPH now.
    I attach tubing to syringe.
    Attach atty to tubing.
    Use syringe to force distilled H2O through atty.
    Rinse H2O out w/ vodka.
    Back in service in about a minute.
  14. JohnKing

    JohnKing Moved On ECF Veteran

    Oct 28, 2010
    I've looked at a few howtos on how to get burnt sugar off of cooking surfaces.

    Hot water usually comes up as the solution.
  15. Prodigal441

    Prodigal441 Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 2, 2011
    I got a fairly in expensive ultrasonic cleaner off of ebay a few years ago to clean parts. I put HOT water in the ultrasonic cleaner and dropped my attys in it for 5 min. Blew them out with compressed air and they were like new.
  16. Purple Haze

    Purple Haze Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 30, 2011
    After reading this thread last night this is what I did. I power flushed my atty with cph for about 3 or 4 minutes. Sure enough when I was done there was 3 or 4 black specks in the mouthwash. I then power flushed with distilled water(both the cph and the dw were in the microwave for about a 1 minute) for about 3 or 4 minutes. Even the distilled water had 5 or 6 minute black tiny specks in it after I was done. The atty is still soaking in the dw as I speak. One more thing is I have been vaping for about a month, so these attys weren't too old. I plan on doing the atty maintenance once a week from now on. Thx for this thread and all the contributors to it. There are various ways people clean their attys just find a good way that works for you.
  17. Rykk

    Rykk Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 8, 2010
    Ok, so tried the Crest ProHealth blue colored mouth wash on two atties this weekend - 1ea m4-series, 1ea 306 type. I ended up soaking them almost 48 hours because I saw very few specks in the cup. I, typically, see a bunch after an isopropyl soak, followed by a peroxide burn, and then agitate in super-hot water from a coffee machine in a white cardboard cup.

    I rinsed the 2 atties quickly in tap water and brought them into my lab at work. I don't see here where anyone has actually "looked" at the atties after the Crest soak. Anyhow, under an inspection microscope I did see white powdery stuff similar to what you get after a dry burn but also that the wicks in middle of the coiled nichrome wire didn't seem to be very clean and the wire was still stuck to the wick in some places and there was some gunk. At this point, since these atties weren't all that gummed up to begin with and it did seem that the atties looked "ok", I'm pretty much 50-50 on this. I didn't get to look at the atties b4 soaking due to when/where I was when finding this thread and just grabbed what I had currently been using for 3-4 days and so don't have a real before/after reference point.

    I'm going to try this on some more heavily gunked up atties with a lot more attention to detail and process and let y'all know what I find out. I'm sure hoping it actually works. I noke Johnson's Creek Tennessee Cured (PG) + 1/4 to 1/3 48mg PG no-flav nicotine for TH + a touch of VG for more vapor. The sweet stuff like this I hear is gunkier and the VG looks thick - especially cold from the fridge - as well so I end up with some atty coils that look pretty much like they're encased in hard coal.

    The absolute best method I've found is to heat up the coil with a soldering iron. I repair my atties and also solder the connections on ones with higher than usual resistance to get them to burn hotter. They 4get to solder the connections in the "bowl" a lot. Heating like this totally melts ALL of the hardened juice, flush it with a syringe of alcohol and the atty is exactly like brand new. Not feasible for most. I know, but iy is a way to heat the wire without drawing current thru it and possibly burning it out.

  18. Rykk

    Rykk Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 8, 2010
    Well, heck. So I tried soaking 7 atomizers - 2ea m4x, 1ea 306, and 4ea m4x series 2nd gen R4 cartomizers - in Blue Crest ProHealth ("alcohol free"). I looked at them all with a microscope (a good mag glass would work, too) to get an idea of the amount of gunk on them so I could tell any difference after the soak.

    Sadly, I have to report that this doesn't work at all. I soaked them all in different cups for not just 15 minutes but for a day and a half. I not only swirled them to circulate the fluid often but also used a syringe and forced Crest onto the coils under pressure to wash off the gunk while the atties soaked.

    Results after reinspection with microscope: NoGo....Zip...Nada........MYTH: BUSTED!

    Dang! I was REALLY hoping this would be something that finally worked. If anything, the sugars in the Crest may have added to the concretion/carmellization on the atty coils. Feared it was a bust when I didn't see much in the way of bits of gunk in the bottoms of the cups.
    Looks like it's back to 3-4 day isopropyl alcohol soaks followed by light scraping with the end of a guitar D string, followed by dry burns with a variable power supply, followed by yet more scraping of the coils under a microscope, and finally soaking in super hot water from the coffee machine here at work....pant, pant. I'm about to give up on any easy way to clean these...maybe oven cleaner????

  19. rusty shackleford

    rusty shackleford Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Nov 19, 2009
    Arlen Texas
    different juices will react differently to the CPH. My diy juice cleans off just fine using the CPH. I'm totally satisfied with the CPH cleaning process, afterall, it's only suppose to clean out the gunk, not strip everythng away. It cleans up the air passages is the claim. I have yet to find any cleaning process that will strip everything off the coil...
  20. Rykk

    Rykk Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 8, 2010
    I noke Johnson's Creek "Tennessee Cured" - a PG based, semi-sweet liquid. To this I add some extra PG 48mg unflavored for throat-hit and a dab of veggie glycerin for vapor. My coils get pretty gunked up. I can get a "fair" clean by soaking in isopropyl for a few days, scraping lightly with a very thin implement like a guitar string, followed by a burn that starts with peroxide squirted in with a syringe and once burned off becomes a "dry burn". After all that, I swirl them around in super-hot water from the automatic coffee machine at work. The alcohol always ends up brown from the juice and I always see lots of little black specks of carmellized juice in the water.

    I investigated further with these atties: I dry burned them and verified with a microscope that the Crest had indeed clung to the coils. Hard to miss the light blue crystallized junk on them. I'm guessing it's the sugars in the Crest. Also, probably the reason they mentioned trouble re-priming the wick at the beginning of this thread was that the Crest had gunked up the wick. It would be hard to see with the naked eye as it is light colored. The Crest ProHealth ("alcohol-free") blue colored mouthwash, unfortunately, didn't even faze the hardened gunk on my m4xx series atomizers even after 3 days and looks like it actually added its own light coating of gunk. I've never seen anything here about anyone actually inspecting the coils under magnification to tell if the method actually did anything to the gunk.

    Maybe VG based liquid might get cleaned off better - dunno. I figure that the problem isn't glycerin or glycol but that it is the sugars in sweet-ish e-liquids that is the culprit here. As to the claim being just to clean the air passages, well I reckon that might be true but hot water and blowing them out will do the same thing cheaper/faster. I was just hoping that someone had - at long last - discovered a convenient way to get the hardened/carmellized coating off of the coils and was pretty bummed after being so jazzed about the possibility this might work. This is the thing that prevents a decent hit on a vaporette more than anything else because it insulates the wire from the juice with a commensurate temperature drop between the coil and liquid. Makes you drag longer/harder and finally burn the atty out.

    All this said, the only thing I've found that gets an atty coil perfectly clean is to heat up one end where the coil is soldered or crimped to the wires that go down to the connector with a soldering iron and a little rosin flux, then flush with a syringe of alcohol. The gunk liquifies and just bubbles right off of the coil wire and out of the fibrous whatever that it is wound around. The alcohol flushes away the re-liquified gunk and, at the same time, dissolves and removes the flux as well.

    Of course, this is a real p.i.t.a. and I only do it when I have to repair an atty that has either had the wire break at the connector center pin or that they didn't attach the coil to the wires well and it burned there due to the high-resistance connection generating way too much heat or it just worked loose. I either just re-solder the connection or take off one turn and re-solder the end of the coil back to the wire - makes for a really nice about 2.0 to 2.2 ohm m4xx atty that nokes like a freight train. Hope some day somebody finds an easier way to clean these darn things...

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