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VG and dripping

Discussion in 'New Members Forum' started by chocotaco, Aug 19, 2009.

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  1. chocotaco

    chocotaco New Member

    Aug 19, 2009
    I've been lurking for a little while, but just signed up. I can't post this to Health & Safety where it belongs because I don't have permission. So maybe a mod can move it there.

    I have some concerns that I want to share about the safety of glycerin (VG) based e-liquids when used with the cart-less dripping method. First, take a look at my crude diagram of the atomizer inside the e-cig:

    [Well, I couldn't post the diagram because the forum won't let me. Because I'm new. I understand spam control, but this is getting kind of irritating.]

    What many people think of as the "atomizer" is what you see when you look into the tube - you see the mesh bridge. This is not the thing that does the actual heating. It is a semicircular bridge made of metal wool that is arranged over the heating element, with the heating element at its center. There is also a circle of metal wool that encompasses the atomizer which is flat inside the atomizer.

    What happens when you use a cartridge is that the filler material inside the cartridge -which is soaked with e-liquid - comes into contact with the semicircular bridge. The metal wool then wicks up some e-liquid, and the heating element causes that liquid to vaporize.

    You can tell subjectively by looking at the heating element that it reaches temperatures in excess of 730C, judging by its black body radiation wavelength (the color it reaches when heated). However, the temperature to which the metal wool is heated in the few seconds of draw is much lower. How much lower I cannot say without measuring it, but that is not the purpose of this post.

    The problem is this: when you drip directly onto the atomizer, you will inevitably get some e-juice directly on the heating element. Therefore, if you drip glycerin-based juice, you will likely be generating some dangerous quantities of acrolein - because the heating element reaches a temperature far in excess of that necessary to degrade the glycerol.

    In short - if you drip, don't use VG. If you use VG, use it only in cartridges. I have no hard evidence to back this up, but I did drip VG for the first time today, and I noticed a really rancid smell after a couple of puffs. I didn't inhale them, thankfully. Personally, I'll be sticking to CaSH juice until I get some carts (I only have 901 carts and my 901 just died)
  2. SLDS181

    SLDS181 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 11, 2009
    Western NJ

    1380 degrees farenheit (roughly)?

    Black body radiation wavelength? You mean the theoretical, not existing wavelength where all radiation is absorbed, because it generates all wavelengths?

    ...... no.
  3. Father Luke

    Father Luke Senior Member ECF Veteran

  4. aschmidy

    aschmidy Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    I'll let you know if I fall over. I have been using VG only since January and I ONLY drip. Haven't had any problems.
  5. SLDS181

    SLDS181 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 11, 2009
    Western NJ
    Don't worry aschmidy, the OP made a single post, full of nonsense. I don't expect you to be falling over any time soon :)

    visible black body wavelength :lol:
  6. HighTech

    HighTech Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Jun 25, 2009
    Really? According to the FDAs own report, it concluded that the atty did not reach much, if any, beyond 60 degrees celsius. Hmmm, they must have been mistaken... :rolleyes:
  7. chocotaco

    chocotaco New Member

    Aug 19, 2009
    I think my diagram would have made me seem much less of a nutter. Pity I couldn't post it.

    You have to differentiate between the heating element and the "atomizer" as a whole. The heating element does in fact reach very high temperatures in some atomizers. If you can see something glowing orange inside the atomizer when you take off the tip, you can be assured that it is reaching the temperatures I indicated - however, it is very small, and is not intended to directly heat the VG. I'm really not just spouting nonsense.

    SLDS181, Please look up thermal radiation in any physics text if you don't know what I'm talking about. Very specific temperatures cause very specific wavelengths of light to be emitted. You can pretty well determine the temperature of a material by the wavelength of light it is emitting. Even your body is emitting light because of its temperature - you just can't see it because its wavelength is in the infrared part of the spectrum. You're confusing "black body" with "black body radiation" - the latter is a term used to refer the the phenomenon I discussed.

    Like I said, it would take measurement to determine the temperature that the metal wool reaches. Like I said, I haven't made this measurement. I also can't say for sure whether it's likely that you will get juice on the heating element. That would depend on your atomizer and your dripping. I also can't say for sure whether your heating element reaches those temperatures. I only know because I looked inside mine (a 901) and the element did glow orange when activated with a manual switch.

    You guys are kind of a bunch of jerks, no offense. I was just cautioning people to be careful about dripping VG. Yeah, I read the other posts about acrolein. I agree that when you use the device as intended there is no danger.

    Anyway I don't think I'm going to post anymore. Sorry for pissing you people off. Sheesh.
  8. annah

    annah Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 14, 2009
    Virginia Beach
    just my totally ignorant opinion..

    But my oven using 220V can only reach 500 degrees. I realize that is the temperature of the air inside, not the metal heating elements, but still.. 200v vs 4? volts For some reason I doubt that a tiny battery operated device can reach over 1000 degrees. I just dont think theres enough power in the battery to do it. And for that matter, isn't the melting point of most metals lower than that?
  9. stevo_tdo

    stevo_tdo Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 27, 2009
    I don't know where to start, short answer = not much if any acrolein. Definitely not 700 plus temp.

    Damn, hey kinabaloo are you there, you know more than most on this particular subject

    Typically that burn taste is when the atty gets to hot (you need to cool down between puffs) and when your atty is getting dry.
  10. SLDS181

    SLDS181 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 11, 2009
    Western NJ

    I think you need to go back to studying your texts. Black body radiation wavelength references a very specific phenomenon, where no radiation passes through or is reflected.

    The heating coils and atomizers have been measured. They are all around 60 degrees Celsius, and by no means are they in any way close to 730 degrees Celsius, the power from the battery is not capable of creating that kind of heat. Even in small amounts, that amount of heat would fry your fingers, tear apart your throat, and destroy your lungs.

    It is not physically possible to achieve what you are describing.

    How would you expect us to respond to something so ridiculous? Do you have any idea how hot 730 degrees Celsius is? Did you read any of the studies done which state - quite explicitly - the temperatures achieved when using a PV?

    You're going to get an annoyed response when you post something completely asinine. Sorry.
  11. chocotaco

    chocotaco New Member

    Aug 19, 2009
    My mistake - you aren't confusing two similar and related terms with each other. There is no such phenomenon as I described. Thermographic cameras work by magic rather than by measuring this mythical "black body radiation" that I made up. A piece of metal glowing orange is actually quite cool - obviously this is the case in my atomizer's heating element, because otherwise the surface temperature of that tiny piece of metal would be transferred to my fingers with magical 100% efficiency, burning them clear off! It would also instantly heat the air to the same temperature, scorching my lungs into oblivion and setting my body ablaze - because there is no such thing as specific heat capacity, and whoever decided that air has an extremely low thermal conductivity was clearly a nutjob like myself. You are an expert in the natural sciences, and you've undoubtedly researched the relevant terms thoroughly before correcting my confused ramblings.

    I withdraw both of my utterly nonsensical posts. Go flood your atomizer with glycerin and vape the **** out of it.

    Or, for ****s and giggles, let's say that I'm not just a crazy guy. First let's calculate whether it's even theoretically possible to raise the heating element to such temperatures with the available power.

    I know for a fact that my atomizer can draw at least 5.25 V at approximately 0.5 A from my USB port. P = IV = 2.63W = 2.63 J/sec. This is enough power to heat 1/100 gram of nichrome (with a specific heat capacity of 0.45 J/g*C) by 700 degrees C in under two seconds:

    (0.45 J/g*C) (0.01g) (700 C) = 3.15 J

    Of course, this wouldn't happen with complete efficiency, but nevertheless I don't see it as completely ridiculous that a tiny piece of nichrome could heat up that much with a few watts going through it during a five to seven second draw. Unless you think your heating element is much more massive than that. Feel free to rip apart your atomizer and weigh it.

    Calculating whether a heating element that hot would annihilate my fingers and lungs takes some integration which I can't illustrate in a forum post. I'll explain it in simple terms - the mass and surface area of the heating element is very low. The thermal conductivity of air (the rate at which heat flows into it due to a temperature gradient) is also very low. The amount of time that the atomizer remains at such a temperature is also pretty low. So no, I don't think it's completely ridiculous that the atomizer could reach 700-some-odd degrees for a second and not injure me.

    Anyway. Whatever. Do whatever you want. I was just trying to warn people to be careful about using these devices in ways that they weren't designed to be used. Using consumables that they weren't necessarily designed to be used with. I really wasn't trying to claim that anyone is going to drop dead or start a panic. You're kind of a typical "internet armchair smart guy" and I guess I shouldn't let you get to me. But when you obviously took 5 seconds to look up the wrong term on wikipedia or google and then publicly call me a ..... based on that, it ticks me off just a bit.


    Yes. If you have a study where someone directly measured the temperature of the heating element (a very tiny and specific component of the atomizer) in a variety of models, I would absolutely love to see it.

  12. stevo_tdo

    stevo_tdo Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 27, 2009
    The atomizer acts as a resistor itself, and you are not taking into the account that proper juice saturation and airflow when inhaling reduces the temperature further.
  13. SLDS181

    SLDS181 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 11, 2009
    Western NJ

    Get your terminology correct, and try again.

    These get nowhere near 730 degrees centigrade. (In case you weren't aware.... thats about the melting point of nichrome.)

    Stop it.
  14. chocotaco

    chocotaco New Member

    Aug 19, 2009
    Again you have no idea what you're talking about. I can't post external links because I'm a noob, but here's an easy one: Look up this ENTIRE TERM "Black body radiation" on wikipedia. It will describe EXACTLY what I said.

    730C is nowhere NEAR the melting point of nichrome (>1400C).

    Look, this isn't even about acrolein anymore. I couldn't care less what you do to yourself. I just want you to get it through your thick head that when metal GLOWS A SPECIFIC COLOR from heating, you can DETERMINE ITS TEMPERATURE from that. I know children that know this fact. Please just learn it and shut up. And stop quoting "facts" that you made up on the spot. Jeez.
  15. SLDS181

    SLDS181 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 11, 2009
    Western NJ
    You said it had a black body radiation wavelength, with a period. As in, the phenomenon of a theoretical pure black body.

    I know what you're saying, and I'm just telling you that you phrased it incorrectly.

    This is true, you're right - for some reason I was thinking farenheit instead of celsius. I blame lack of food at lunch time, now rectified.

    This still doesn't change the fact that the coil and the atomizer are not getting that hot, that acrolein has a very obvious smell. Acrolein causes IMMEDIATE harm to your body in very small amounts. If VG was being heated up as much as you are suggesting, the results would be obvious.
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