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The Very Basics
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Michael Offline
Oh, where have I gone off to...

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Post: #1
The Very Basics
A lot of people use e-cigs without really knowing how they work. This can be fine if you're using disposable tanks or pre-made coils, but if you're going to make your own coils for a rebuildable atomizer it's important to know how the various parts relate. One of our members wrote this reply to another thread, and I think he sums it up very well:

(28-04-2015 08:29 PM)Almost Jaded Wrote:  What would you like to know?  Anything you ask here, plenty of people will be willing to answer!

The basics is this - not counting the systems that don't use coils, because they're going the way of the DoDo anyway - the coil is the heating element that turns your juice into vapor.  The wick material draws the juice into the coil, the coil heats up and vaporizes the juice, you inhale the vapor by drawing air across the whole assembly when you inhale.

Because vapes use battery power to the the coils, the whole deal is just a straightforward application of Ohm's Law.  Wattage is the measurement of heat energy in this case; we vary the resistance (ohms) in order to change the relationship between voltage and current to obtain those watts.  Lower resistance (hence "sub-ohming" - less than 1 ohm resistance) allows us to get more wattage from the same voltage.  This means more vapor!

But one must also consider airflow and wicking.  Without adequate airflow, the vapor will burn your mouth when you inhale.  Without adequate wicking, you get dry hits - the bane of every vaper's existence, LOL.

So when designing a coil setup, single, dual, or more - you are taking several things into consideration.  The placement and size of the air holes. The number of posts and their placement.  The size of the deck building area.  The total wicking capability and/or capacity.  And of course, the target resistance, as not all battery packs (mods) will safely handle resistances below certain points.

The tools in the builders arsenal to work with these factors are - wire gauge, coil size, number of winds in the coil, series vs parallel wiring, coil placement, and various wicking materials and techniques.

As complicated as that sounds, it's not as bad as you think once you understand how the variables interact.  A "good" coil "designer" is someone with a good understanding of all these variables as they relate to the equipment at hand and the desired result.  A willingness to modify the equipment itself allows one to take it up a notch; many RDA (direct drip decks) users enlarge their air holes, as RDA's offer the ability to create massive amounts of vapor.  In my case, I opened up the wicking channels and even drilled new ones, for a deck that I believed could support plenty of air and power but was limited by juice flow to the wicks.

Read that a few times and ask questions.  Smile    

So as you can see, there's a lot involved in how an e-cig works. Airflow, power, and resistance must work together in harmony to create the perfect vape, and understanding how these are interrelated is crucial when you're using a rebuildable atomizer. 

For more in-depth information, take a look at some of the other posts here in the FAQ section. "What the heck is Ohm's Law?" outlines how the formula pertains to vaping, and I'll add more links here to new articles when they are finished. Until then, feel free to ask any questions you may have. 
29-04-2015 06:19 AM
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[-] The following 5 users Like Michael's post:
ADIE37 (01-18-2016), Almost Jaded (04-29-2015), Fatboy (12-26-2016), JEFF (09-09-2015), TinWhisker (08-23-2016)
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