Note: I have to completely redo this page due to technical incompatibilities with my page generation technique so it may not look right until I do.
There are a number of ceramic core atomizers both glassomizer and rebuildables. Be sure to check out the Ceramic Heating Elements page.
You can look at disassembled pictures of any RTA especially the build deck and discern reasonable well how it will perform.
Let me provide this as a BLUF:
If you want high flavor density then you want more juice flow with as much heated surface area in contact with saturated wick as possible than air flow. This is what is meant as a flavor chaser. You want the highest vaporized eLiquid to air ratio.
If you want clouds then you want just the opposite with airflow first and foremost. This is a cloud chaser, you want large billowing clouds.
Yes the two are mutually exclusive air flow for air flow. Most all tanks have an AFC so you can always dial it down for greater flavor density. At 24W and 10 seconds to full lungs is the same flavor density as 1 second to full lungs at 240W.
How to calculate flavor density. Determine how long it takes you to fill your lungs inhaling through the attys to be compared without firing it. It doesn't matter what the force is just as long as it is the same force used for both. Even on a wide open 30mm VCMT it takes me 2 seconds to fill my lungs and the Hurricane takes me 20 seconds to fill my my lungs using same force. Now the VCMT can sustain 80W but compare that to a Hurricane that takes 24W. 24 times 20 is 240 and 80 times 2 is 160. Dial the AFC down on the VCMT so it takes 3 seconds to full lungs and the flavor density is equivalent, 3 times 80 is 240. I don't know what the units are, it doesn't really matter. It is a real world test and simple calculation you can do. As long as you maintain the same inhale force and determine the power the atty can sustain in TC mode without TP kicking in, then the comparison is accurate for you. For extra credit the average person maximum inhale rate is 0.5 liters per second with a normal breath taking 5 seconds.
Out of 60+ atomizers and growing:
My favorite MTL RTAs are the Rose V2, Taifun GT-IIS, EHPRO Bachelor and FoCloud.
My favorite DTL RTAs are the VCMT 30mm, VCMT 25mm, Billow V2 (22mm).
My favorite balanced RTA between extreme flavor density and extreme cloud is the Hurricane V2 (modified).
The Krixus is an amazing tank. Ceramic heating elements are finally going in a good direction. But I will need more data.
And remember, you can always dial down the AFC on a DTL tank to get a MTL.
Now for a look at some:
These are the basic build deck design attributes:
Air inlet below coil
Air inlet to side of coil
Air inlet size
Air inlet shape
Juice channels below air inlet
Juice channels in line with air inlet
Juice channels above air inlet
Juice channel size
Number of coils:
Coil leg attachment:
Screw head capture
Screw point capture
There are many other features such as size and weight, top fill versus bottom, tool needed to fill versus tool less, Air Flow Control (AFC) and type, Juice Flow Control (JFC) and type, tank material glass or plastic, positive post material ceramic versus plastic (PEEK versus others), remove build deck without emptying tank and etc. I do view plastic tanks of any type as a con.
We will discuss each of the above in turn.
Air: Air inlets that are below the coil work best. Air inlets that come in from the side typically do not flow air over the build. Elongated air inlets that pass over the entire length of the build are better than circular air inlets that just pass air over the center of the coil. Yes the center of the coil gets hotter than the ends but the cooling from juice is much more important than air. We want air passing over the entire coil build to promote optimum intermix and build coils that are spread so the coil heats evenly.
Juice: Juice channels in line or above the build flow juice the best. The primary factor here is wick length. If the juice channels are below the build as in a KF then juice takes time to travel up the long wick ends. Juice channel size determines how much juice gets wicked to the coil so larger is better.
Coil orientation: Many attys designed for horizontal coil builds can accommodate a vertical build but usually with a long return leg from the top of the vertical coil unless it can be modified by lowering or raising one of the posts usually the ground. Single large diameter vertical coils perform better than two smaller horizontals. It comes down to heated surface area in contact with saturated wicking, more is better.
Number of coils: Single coil builds are a lot easier than dual coils. Dual or multi coil builds have to be tweaked so they are balanced, i.e. heat up the same number of wraps at the same time to the same amount.
Coil leg attachment: Deck desings that secure the coil legs under the head of a screw are easier than those that use the screw point. But some screw heads are too small or not flat enough for large gauge wire. On those, use small flat washers or replace the screws that have larger and more flat under the heads. On screw point capture attys use an old sharpening stone (any old rock will work) and rub the points flat. This will help prevent cutting wire. Another trick is to place snippets of SS utility wire inside the posts just use the stone to flatten the ends of the snippets and cut/hone them to desired length..
Arnold & RSST
The genesis or “genny” style RTAs, examples shown above, had the tank of juice below the wick/coil build. RSST on the left and the Arnold on the right. These often resulted in hot vapes and you ended up having to tilt the device the correct way to get enough juice to flow to the build so you don’t get a dry vape. They were built by using SS mesh, silica rope, SS rope or ceramic rods for the wick. The SS mesh and rope had to be oxidized by burning with a crème Brule’ torch and VG so the coil wouldn’t short out when wrapped on the wick. It was common to oxidize several times and even after wrapping the coil on the wick moving the wraps up and down while firing to eliminate hot spots. The SS mesh had to be rolled up very tightly into a compact cylinder as shown above on the left on an RSST. Although not intuitive, I found that with 100% VG, 500 mesh worked better than 400 mesh. The SS rope could also be sheathed with silica as it was difficult to oxidize as shown above to the right on the Arnold. We even experimented with porous ceramic rods. But I always found the mesh to wick far better. Kanthal was wrapped around the wick and the coil legs secured to the positive post and ground screws. I still have a few genny RTAs but merely as conversation pieces as they are essentially obsolete. I do not recommend these at all as they are a pain to use and give a hot vape. But as always if this is what you like, kudos to you. Given clearomizers and glassomizers with coil cartridges were moving atty designs to a bottom coil design, the next big improvement in RTAs came with the venerable Kayfun (KF) from SvoёMesto. Shown below is the later 3.1 version. The Kayfun V2, V3 and Lite versions are favorites too.
The KF is a bottom coil RTA. This greatly improved the juice flow issue and virtually eliminated the need to hold the device a certain way. They were an improvement over Gennys for juice flow because bottom coils have gravity on their side helping to flow juice. The KF also provided an airflow control through a set screw on the base and limited juice control depending on how far down you screwed the chimney. The KF is filled through a hole in the base (bottom fill) by removing a screw and using a needle tip bottle or syringe. As you can see, the KF now comes with a Poly methyl methacrylate (PMMA) or SS middle section shown to the right in the picture above. At the top right is the stock threaded drip tip. At the top center are a couple of upgrades you can purchase to hop up the KF, namely a glass tank and top fill tank topper that works with either the SS, PMMA or glass tank. The top fill tank topper is in two pieces. The bottom piece screws into the tank. Then you twist the top half to open holes for refilling (one for needle tip bottle or syringe and the other to vent air as the tank is filled) as shown below. The top fill tank topper also has an integrated standard 510 drip tip well. At the top left are two kinds of long 510 drip tips. These help cool down a hot vape. I like the ones with double o-rings the best because they don’t wobble as much. At the bottom left is an atty meter that also serves as a build stand. It is useful to ensure you are not shorting your coil at every step of the rebuild process.
As you can see in the picture below, the stock drip tip has a much smaller hole.
While this restricts the draw it does not increase tank vacuum, it serves to increase intermix. Some call it flavor concentration. Compare that to the hole sizes in the two long drip tips on the right and a shorty borrowed from a Fogger on the left. A small washer can also be placed in the drip tip well if more restriction/intermix is desired.
The KF is considered a 22mm atty. That means its outside diameter is 22mm making it the ideal size for an 18650 based tube mod which are also about 22mm in diameter. There have been several versions since the original and this is the 3.1 with the V4 available today. The V4 is drastically different in terms of design and number of parts but still gives the same vape experience.
Note the adjustable center pin on the KF in the right most picture above. Some mods have an immovable center pin their 510 connector. On these mods, an atty with an adjustable center pin allows the bottom of the atty to sit flush on top of the mod without a gap. This not only looks better but helps secure the atty as well.
There is a variant of the Kayfun called the Russian 91% shown below next to a Kayfun. It is a Kayfun design and its signature is deeper cut juice channels and a taller tank, chimney top and drip tip. And it has a larger air hole stock. The base is shorter in height than a KF V3.1 and is essentially the same height as a KF V2, V2.1, Lite or V3. Though it is possible to find any KF with deeper cut juice channels some are not quite as deep. The Russian tall chimney slides up into the drip tip. And all these variants take the same builds we discussed above. Sometimes with the Russian, A little bit of wick needs to be stuffed in the juice channels to prevent leaking if you use a thin e-Liquid. Also most of the Russian clones and the Kebo are the same as a Kayfun V2. The tank is smaller and they use the same chimney top. The only difference in most of these is the base and drip tip. Then there is the big and the tall versions. It can get quite confusing. But they all vape great at lower power.
Now the version 2 Russian 91% is available. It has a short chimney top and taller chimney base and uses a capture post for the coil. Kayfuns and Russians are carried nearly everywhere and available on-line for $20 USD or less. I could probably end this chapter right here. If you have gotten this far you know 90% of what you need to. For more power and vapor though, we will have to look at other attys. Some of them derived from the KF like the Lemo or Erlkönigin are single coil with greater air flow. For the rest, we’ll have to take a stroll down memory lane.
The V4 Kayfun shown below is the next iteration in the Kayfun line. The V4 build deck can be removed without emptying the tank and is top refill. It’s airflow control is internal by a screw in the center post air stem. And it uses standard 510 drip tips. It comes with a SS and glass center section or a PMMA tank. So you have three tank options out of the box. It has a juice flow control by twisting the tank. Clockwise opens the juice control and counter clockwise closes it. This makes it more natural for use. When you put it on an APV/mod you screw clockwise so naturally when the base seats keep turning the tank until it stops at full open juice control. When you take it off by unscrewing the tank counter clockwise it closes the juice control and then starts unscrewing the base from the APV/mod.
The V4 KF has more parts than any other atty I have seen. And lots of o-rings. See the diagram below. It is complex because the design allows the base with integrated juice flow control to be adjusted and removed for rebuild without having to empty the tank. As far as the juice control itself, I only found wide open or fully closed to be of use. Wide open when vaping and closed when refilling from the top of course.
It is not sub-ohm or Ni200 friendly out of the box due to a spring (part 12) between parts 11 and 14. The spring delivers positive voltage from the 510 center pin the positive post on the build deck through the combination air stem center post. That spring allows for some pretty wild resistance changes as it has a TCR and a fairly large base resistance associated with it. But don’t let that deter you, this is a good atty with a couple of mods if you can use simple hand tools. There is a 4S kit for sub-ohming as shown below.
The 4S kit replaces the center stem and has a larger through hole for air flow. It is the left stem in the picture above and the middle one in the picture below. The holes on the flats of the hex are smaller on mine but I believe that to be a defect and not normal. It is possible to modify a stock stem by removing the airflow control screw from the bottom of the stem. There is also a new spring but it is not that much better for Ni200 temperature protect. Therefore, I modified the supposed 4S to use Ni200, by slotting the bottom as shown in the right most picture below. A dremel with cut off wheel was used. A jeweler’s file would work as well.
I did this as I wanted the air stem to bottom out on the 510 square nut in the base when the juice control was set to full open so I could remove the spring. I also wanted better airflow than those small holes. But the stem base was just a tad short so I used a 3mm washer and filed the sides to match the square nut shown below and placed it under the square nut so the modified stem would make contact when the juice flow control was wide open.
That spring is what makes contact between the 510 center pin square nut and the air stem center block. And with very low resistance builds, that spring was causing wild resistance variations. This made the DNA-40 drop out of temperature protect mode into plain old variable wattage mode. So a simple washer fix and that eliminated the spring and provided solid contact for Ni200 and the DNA-40 temperature protect mode. The washer raises the square nut by just enough for the air stem to make solid contact when the juice flow control is set to full open.
Regular Kanthal builds won’t need this modification unless they are sub-ohm. Putting a ~3mm 28 gauge and Rayon build as shown below on the V4 was easy. The base uses screws to capture the coil leg wires instead of posts with through holes that are invariable always drilled too deep. I appreciate the simplicity of screws. There are four screws, two on the center block and two on the ground. While it can be done, the reason there are four screws is not for dual coil. They are there for ease in building as they will accommodate a right or left hand turn coil. Cut the wick ends so they barely touch the deck where the juice holes are. Don’t cram it in. Pre-wet the wick and trim as necessary so the wicks are barely touching the deck. You can also comb the wick to straighten the strands before wetting. A good coil size is 2-2.5mm for the V4. Not the 5mm shown in this picture. I have also used dual serial 2mm coils. Wrap four then offset with a little wire and wrap four more then flip the last coil over so it sits next and parallel to the first. This results in the coil legs being on the same side which can make it a little trickier to wick but it vapes well especially with Rayon.
The V4 vapes good. Good draw, vapor production and flavor. Better than the V2/3/3.1 and Russian 91% on all counts. It’s not as unrestricted draw as other attys but it is very good with these modifications. However there is one other drawback. With 100% VG, some of us have found the V4 vacuum builds in the tank very quickly and it stops flowing juice with any wicking method and build limiting its performance to about 16W. Especially if let sit for a while. It simply does not exchange air back into the tank with high viscosity e-Liquid. This is inherent to the design with the small juice holes that go a long ways through the deck. Surface tension increases with viscosity and at a high enough point, the surface tension prevents air flow back into the tank through those small juice channels. Upon drilling the juice channels on my V4 to 1.6mm it started flowing better. Another tip is to loosen the drip tip nut when you start getting dry hits to release the vacuum in the tank. With these little modifications and tricks, this atty is sustaining 16W on a DNA-40 in temperature protection mode.
Notes; The authentic is buttery smooth though there are some good clones out there and I feel better about drilling out and modifying an inexpensive clone to run my 100VG adequately than an expensive authentic. I must say the midnight brushed black version from Yi Loong is my favorite clone. I have also tried dual serial 2mm coils and it works better. Wrap 4-6 turns then start a new coil wrapping back the opposite direction with maybe a 2mm offset using the same number of coils then wick both lightly with Rayon all four ends just touching the deck.
V4 Style Plus
Shown below is the plus size version of the V4 next to the regular size. It is 26.4mm at the base and 28mm at the tank. Even the drip tip is wider. It does hold a few ml more e-Liquid.
Notice the glass tank edges are cut and ground and not polished. This will abrade seals faster than polished edges. A good idea to wet the seals with a little e-Juice prior to screwing together. Now let’s look at the build deck below.
The 4S replacement stem shown next to the base was drilled out to 2.5mm. Notice in the far right picture the flange left over from machining. This was easily removed with a small flat blade screwdriver but is an excellent example of machining errors to inspect for while cleaning the atty for the first time. Since the juice holes are small the performance is about the same as the regular KF V4. However the larger flange will accommodate drilling the juice holes out larger than the regular size KF V4. Say to 2mm. Notice the stock juice holes are beveled.
Note: on all my KF V4’s I lose the spring and raise part number 11 with a squared off washer for best and consistent TC performance.
However, KFs and KF derivatives all share two basic design features, the coil/wick build and air hole sits on stilts above the juice channels. What that translates into is resistance to flooding and leaking but a longer wick length than an atty that has the air hole in the same plane as the juice holes and a build that sits right off the deck like the Fogger.
Then came the dual bottom coil attys. This one shown above with the airflow holes at the same level and in the same plane as the juice holes is the BIG Fogger with dual ceramic Vapin Donuts from FatDaddy Vapes (not shown is the cotton or rayon wick added around the donuts like an enchilada with the wick ends extended to the juice channels). The BIG Foggers also have a large build deck and have a large vaporizing chamber that can accommodate horizontal or vertical coil builds. But the wick length, the length the juice has to flow from the juice reservoir to the coil or heating element is a little shorter than the KF but sits lower so juice doesn’t have to flow against gravity quite as far. Shorter wick length mostly translates into faster recovery between draws but also helps to flow more juice. Not only that, but any juice that drips off the wick or through a partially covered juice channel ends up leaking out the air holes because unlike the KF, the airholes are at the same level as the juice holes. And if enough juice bridges the gap between the juice and air holes that are on the same level, you can end up with a siphoning process that will empty your entire tank down the side of your mod and hand. With that said, they can be wicked so they don’t leak. Every atty can. It is just a matter of finding the right technique. It’s just that some designs are more difficult or “touchy” than others.
Shown above are different iterations of the popular Fogger. On the left is a KF then a V5 Fogger, then a V4, a V4.1, a BIG Fogger and a Kaiser. The outside diameter of the regular Fogger is about the same size as a 18650 battery tube mod which is around 22mm or so. The BIG Fogger is about the same size as a 26650 battery tube mod which is around 30mm or so. Obviously the BIG holds a lot more e-Liquid. But what is unique about it is a very large build deck and vapor chamber. Shown below on the left is the V5 fogger that introduced spring loaded push pins for connecting the coil legs instead of screws. While I had no problems with these on Kanthal builds, but did not work for Ni200 builds. So I unscrewed the push pins, removed the spring and used 2mm SS screws from McMaster.
In the middle of the picture was a horizontal build on a fogger and to the far right was a vertical build. Due to the foggers small airhole but large deck and chamber height, massive vertical coils can be accommodated. Especially on the BIG Fogger with its even larger deck and chimney shown below on the right.
To better accommodate a vertical build on the Fogger simply unscrew the ground post (V4 because V5s are press fit) and use the extra fill screw from the parts bag that comes with the Foggers. Then wind one coil clockwise and the other counter-clockwise. Screw down the legs and wrap them like a canoli with cotton or rayon. And this is what I think sets the V4 Fogger apart from other Bottom Dual Coil (BDC) RTAs, how well they accommodate vertical builds. But beware, the ground post on the V5 and V6 Fogger is a press fit and not threaded. So you will have to get taper and bottom taps as well as a screw if you want to run verticals on a V5 or V6 Fogger.
The major changes that the 5th version of the Fogger brought was a top fill vice bottom fill and a rubber plug imbedded in a groove underneath the airfow control ring to better hold the airflow control ring setting shown below.
The 5th version of the BIG brought those improvements without the spring loaded posts as shown above in the right picture. Also, the air holes were slightly larger. And like all previous Foggers, the air flow control ring partially obstructs the air holes drilled in the base.
Now let’s look at the newest iteration of the Yiloong Fogger, the version 6 shown to the left in the picture below. Next to it are the V5 and the V4. There were actually three versions of the V4, while there were other changes, all were a bottom fill. The V5 added a top fill retained in the V6. The V5 also had a rubber plug underneath the air flow control ring to help lock in place. All the V4s and the V5 suffered from an air flow control ring that partially obstructed the air flow hole in the base and can also be seen below to the right on the V4. The V6 corrects that with an all new air flow control ring.
The V6 according to Yiloong’s own web page claims has improvements over the V5. Let’s look at these claims:
Claim: “From the appearance, it’s fully assembled with pyrex glass tank, a big change from the fogger 5.0.” That’s is true it looks more “glassy” with the removal of the skirt from the top tank ring. That extra skirt helped shield the glass during accidental impacts.
Claim: “Fogger v6 can be accessed to dual 1mm, 1.5mm and 2mm (2mm, 3mm and 4mm in total) air holes adjustable with ball bearing air flow control function.” There are two air holes in the base that are indeed the sizes claimed. However the size of the air holes in the deck are 2.5mm There is no ball bearing but there are spring loaded brass pins to lock the air flow control ring into place.
Claim: “Filling is from the top with a thick high quality o-ring this time in case of leaking issue appeared.” Well, I never had a problem with the old one but ok some might I guess. But as we will see, this o-ring is useless without a completely machined tank top.
You get the idea I hope. I am spending a lot of time on the Fogger because it illuminates typical issues and will serve as a guide for atty selection. Vendors are constantly changing designs and making improvements based on the feedback they get. Sometimes within weeks or months.
Almost all RTAs will come with a spare parts bag with silica wick, some Kanthal, o-rings and screws. And a tool if needed for the build. In this case a keychain screwdriver that has a Philips cross point on one end and a flat regular point on the other. Yiloong has included with the V6 a glass and aluminum drip tip instead of the usual SS of previous models. So what is the first thing we do?
Yes we take it apart and wash it with ever clear and examine the parts. Shown below, the V6 is on the left and the V5 on the right for comparison.
And behold we find issues. The tank top cap pictured above on the left has two holes drilled in it for refill. Except the fill hole is partially plugged with flashing and the vent hole is completely obstructed where the machining didn’t go all the way through. Making the new thicker o-ring quite useless. However as shown below, the cutout for using a fingernail to pluck out the o-ring is the real improvement here as the cutout on the V5 was way too small as shown below.
At this point you can either contact the seller for a return or drill them out yourself. As I have the necessary equipment and skill, I decide to finish Yiloongs work for them and drill out the tank top cap fill hole and vent hole. Next I find the airholes in the deck are 2.5mm but the airholes in the base are 2mm. While Yiloong was correct in their statement about the size of the air hole on the base, it doesn’t match the deck. While this helps with vacuum which is good, it also doesn’t achieve the flow the deck is capable of. There are three air holes on each side of the base so I decide to drill the air flow control ring and the largest base air holes to 2.5mm, the next to 2mm and the smallest to 1.5mm.
Now we look at the deck of the V6 versus the deck of the V5 shown below. The V5 had spring loaded push posts for wire capture which made one less tool required for build which is a good idea but the spring was too weak and did not give satisfactory connectivity for Kanthal builds and therefore especially not for Ni200 builds that are typically very low sub-ohm base resistance. So as shown the spring loaded posts were replaced with screws.
There are several problems evident with the differences in the decks. First is the depth of the holes through the binding posts that capture the coil leg wires with a screw. Those posts are drilled all the way to the deck. When a coil leg wire is put through the hole and the screws tightened, it cuts the wires and results in no contact and ruining a perfectly good coil. To alleviate that problem, I take some SS wire that fits the ID of those holes and snip off four pieces that are long enough to fill the holes from the deck up to the bottom of the coil leg wire capture holes as shown below.
The deck of the V6 is also larger. This makes the juice channels farther apart and therefore the wick length longer. Also, since the glass tanks are identical from version 4 through version 6, the gap between the chimney and the glass is reduced. This makes it more difficult to flow juice to the coil wick with higher viscosity 100% VG e-Liquid. As juice flows through the wick, air has to be exchanged back into the tank or there is a vacuum buildup inside of the tank that restricts juice flow. The smaller gap results in air bubbles being more difficult to escape the vaporizing chamber back into the tank through the juice holes and takes longer for the bubbles to clear the chimney. This is not an improvement and not correctable. Let’s go ahead and build it up.
First we take a wrap of Ni200 off the spool, clean it to remove the industrial lubricants used to make the wire and make our coils shown below.
We wind 10 wraps of 28 gauge around a screwdriver. Then we spread the coil apart and push it back together while still on the screw driver to give us nice even spacing between the coils. We want this spacing for two reasons. First with Ni200, coils that touch play havoc with the overall resistance as the coil heats up expanding and contracting the coils. This changing resistance will be detected by the TP APV. Secondly, the tiny gap allows a greater heated surface area and room for vaporized e-Liquid to escape. I recommend spread coils vice compressed contact coils even when using higher resistance Kanthal wire on older variable wattage builds for this reason alone. We place the deck with bare coils on the APV and read .1 ohms total resistance.
To wick it, we take a sliver of Rayon or OC and thin an end and twist it and snip it so we can thread it through the coil as shown below.
We pull the wick through the coil. As Ni200 is softer than Kanthal we may have to use a small flat blade screwdriver or our finger to help hold the coil in place as we pull the wicking through. It is ok for Rayon to be a little tight. But never cotton of any ilk. After the wicking is pulled through we trim it as shown below. Note this was a subsequent rewick and the left ground post is broken off.
Once you have the coils in place it is fairly easy to rewick. If you don’t like the performance you are getting you can take it apart and rewick it. When it comes to cotton, we want less wick than we would use with Rayon. We want enough wick to cover the juice channels but trim it so little wick actually gets stuffed in the juice channels. Next we use a flat blade screw driver or fingernail to thrum the coil for a nice even spacing between wraps. Just raking across the coil usually does the trick. Then we grasp the ends of the wick and pull the coil into position. We want it setting off the deck a tad and directly above the air hole.
Next we screw the bottom part of the chimney onto the base, wet the wicks and use a screw driver to straighten and push the wick down to meet the deck as shown below.
This will actually push just a little bit, maybe a mm, of wick into the juice channels. Which is just what we want. Wick just touching the deck maybe just a tad into the channels. This provides for the best juice flow while preventing flooding and leaking. The excess wicking sitting on the deck around the channel will serve as a ready reservoir for the coil.
Now we are ready to assemble it, fill it and vape it. Shown on an XPV40 below.
The build we just made is able to sustain the full 40W from the DNA-40. By that I mean we can set the DNA-40 to 40W and in temperature protect mode because we used the Ni200 and the DNA-40 senses that, we can vape without temperature protect kicking in throughout the length of the draw including successive chain vape draws.
As shown below we see that air bubbles are being released in the tank and they make their way up the chimney to the top of the tank. This means it is flowing juice very well. Bubbles are what you want to see.
I find the vape quite unrestricted which is good. The flavor is muted as there is way more air than vaporized e-Liquid. But it does produce way more than enough and gigantic clouds of vapor. As we dial down the air flow control from wide open 2.5mm to 2mm the flavor kicks in as the vaporized juice to air ratio is reduced providing a richer vape. At this point it produces so much dense vapor that it is literally gagging. The V4s and V5 had better flavor, ran at lower wattage but had a more restricted draw. To get that flavor back, we would need to increase power above what the DNA-40 is capable of – 40W. And at 40W, it is already putting out way more vaporized e-Liquid, albeit muted, then I need. So on the next build we would try a smaller diameter coil at 4mm with smaller 30 gauge wire at 10 wraps. Using smaller diameter coils reduces resistance and we don’t want to go below .1 ohms on the coil. So we compensate by using 30 gauge wire which has a higher resistance per unit length than thicker 28 gauge wire. And then drop the air flow control down to the most restrictive 1.5mm to get that rich flavor we are looking for at around 24W.
The Kaiser atomizer similar to a Rose (the Rose has larger juice channels) goes a step further and puts the build in-line with the juice flow and the air hole below the juice holes. This RTA has the juice channels and heating elements and wicks on the same level as the juice channels at the bottom of the tank. That design inherently lends to far greater juice flow and a greater propensity to leak. The ceramic cup helps reduce heat transfer to the SS base. And the chimney can be adjusted up and down to adjust juice flow without have to empty the tank.
The Kaiser with ceramic donut and rayon wick and integrated juice flow control performed much better at flowing juice than any of my other attys. The only problem I had with the Kaiser is getting it to not flow juice I.E. not flood or leak. As the air hole is below the coil and wick build and juice flow holes, it is even more prone to leaking than the Foggers. It takes gobs of tightly packed rayon. Which is good because it keeps the heating element completely covered and saturated in juice. Exactly what we are looking for. Maximum surface area in contact with juice. And it can be wicked to not leak as well but is more difficult to do so. For a conventional coil build, the Kaiser can support duals or a single coil as there are two slots per side for the wick/juice holes. If using a single coil, just split the wick between the two slots.
Huanying Provic W3 / Erlkönigin
Next up is the HuanYing Provic W3 made by Joyetech. Very similar to an Erlkönigin but with some better improvements. The Provic doesn’t come with a wick ring, has a glass tank vice plastic and it has an AFC ring as shown below. There is a clear tank version but I kind of like the painted on black flames even though they will probably wear off over time.
The drip tip is threaded but the atty also comes with a 510 drip tip adapter so you can use all your favorite drip tips. What is fascinating about the Erl is the build deck. It has an elevated airhole and a wick trough as shown below. This essentially allows you to control the juice flow design by how much wick you put in the trough. Stop the wick at the top and it essentially puts the juice channel over the air hole. Place wick in the trough all the way down the side and that effectively places the juice channel below the air hole.
The top fill ports shown above are a great feature of the Erl. While it is true you can wick any atty not to leak, I always like closing the AFC when filling a top fill atty as I wick attys right on the verge of flooding/leaking because I run the most viscous 100% VG e-Liquid. Which is why I never considered the Erl as it didn’t have an external AFC. We will build it with 8 wraps of 28 gauge Ni200 and use Rayon. We use a mandrel the same size of the juice trough ~3mm and lay the mandrel in the juice trough while we attach the coil legs. We will cut the Rayon just to the shoulder point of the build deck as shown below.
That build vapes a solid 14W and has great flavor. It has a 2mm center airhole but the side airholes (4) are a tad small (~1mm). I found the vape too restrictive. I removed the combination air stem/center post and insulators and drilled the stem to 2.5mm and the through holes in the stem to 2mm (two through holes) and the four side air holes on the base to 2mm (note 1.6mm would have been fine but I find cobalt 2mm drill bits a lot easier to work with). This opened up the draw and I compensated with a build that supports 18W by cutting the wicks shorter in order to get flavor density back. There is another atty that has a similar wick channel design and actually comes with swappable build decks called the Squape Revised shown below.
Again laying the mandrel in the juice slots and using Rayon just like the Provic and gives a solid 18W and great flavor. While I liked how the SS cage protected the glass I did not like the AFC as it always hung down and threatened to fall off. Also, the wick has to be to the end of build deck so a matching ring in the chimney will compress and seal it otherwise it will flood and leak terribly. The replaceable build decks were a novel idea but are a pain to get out. Both the build deck and chimney are aluminum coated with a nonconductive coating. And it needs a narrow snout bottle tip or needle tip to fill. With that said, it vapes good.
Let us now see if we can put what we have learned to use. A new atty has just come out. After sorting through ads and reviews I finally come across what I am looking for as shown below.
The build deck is always the key. Sure we want to know other details but this is where the vapor production happens. How do you think it will perform? Well we know it looks basically like a Kayfun so it is the air over juice design. But look at that massive air hole. After more searching we find it is 3mm. Wow that’s a lot of air if the base air inlet hole is large enough to match. Nice juice channels. But not as large as the air. About the same size as a good KF or Russian 91%, about 2mm. What does that tell you? Much better than a run of the mill Kayfun. This deck has potential. Care to guess how many watts it could sustain?
Yep it’s the Eleaf Lemo shown above. Interesting, it can support a massive coil. Base inlet ports, four of them, look large enough ~2mm to supply that large 3mm deck hole.
It is a bottom fill which is kind of a pain but Eleaf uses a silicone plug (picture above) instead of a screw. Nice double o-ring 510 drip tip. Holds a lot of juice too as shown below. The tank is much taller than a Fogger. Hint – the condensation in that aftermarket glass angled drip tip is a clue to its performance.
As shown below we’ll wick it so the OC barely touches the deck maybe a hair away. We’ll use as many wraps from a single loop of 28 gauge Ni200 from the spool. Cleaned of course. On our trusty screwdriver mandrel ~4-5mm it’s about 10 wraps. Gives a total of .37 ohms.
The Lemo vapes excellent! And since there is one massive coil instead of two massive coils it is within the limit of a 40W device. And that raises two issues. First it can sustain a lot more power but second I can’t stand it. Way too much vapor and nic for me at my current e-Liquid nicotine strength. It produces more than I can handle at 24W. So raising the power will make the flavor even deeper probably to that of a good KF but at high power. It does have an air flow control. It is inside the base as shown below.
The ring around the build deck center post screw with a small detent is the AFC on the Lemo and can be adjusted with the included keychain screwdriver small flat blade end. By reducing the airflow, the flavor density is increased while keeping power the same.
And that my friends illuminates the problem with liking unrestricted airy vapes. The more unrestrictive the more air is needed. And to keep the flavor as dense, then more vaporized juice is needed. At a certain point, it’s way too much vapor and you have to adjust the strength of the e-Liquid down or suffer nic overload. Or simply take a shorter draw or fewer.
The Lemo does have one drawback though. The capture posts are drilled too deep and the screws will cut the wire legs of the coil instead of binding them. Why is it everybody has to drill those holes so deep? Well a couple flat washers on top of the block under those screw heads and wrapping the coil legs around the screw under the flat washer solves that problem.
One note about the Lemo base. It appears to have an adjustable 510 center pin but actually, not so much. Loosening the 510 center screw and the main post in the base loosens as well. As is sometimes it doesn’t make good contact when the base is screwed on. I found putting a little extra insulator under the base main post improves connectivity with the build deck center post especially when using Ni200 and temperature protect. It can be about 1mm thick when compressed and made from virtually any insulating material. Even a wide rubber band punched with a leather hole punch would work. Shown below I used a silicone washer.
Now let’s look at a monster. As the Arnold was to Gennies, the Wolverine is to bottom dual coil RTAs.
The wolverine is on the far left in the picture above. Next to a Lemo then the Provic and lastly a Kayfun V4. This monster holds a whopping 19ml. That’s nearly a weeks’ worth of juice. Even dry it is heavy. Let us take a look at the build deck below.
As you can see it has 4 massive juice channels. This thing can accommodate some power. The air holes are actually slots in the sides of the center ceramic insulator which hinders vapor production. Air holes directly under coils always work better. SO we put the coils as to over the top of the air flow as we can. I do like they are slotted and not holes. That allows for a much longer coil. The downside is wick length from end wraps to inside wraps is quite long. We will test build it with dual 14 wrap 3mm coils wicked with Rayon in a slant configuration to keep coil legs short. The vape experience is great. This thing soaks up all 40W of the DNA-40. This is a gagger. So much wet dense vapor I feel like I’m drowning when I vape it. If the air slot was extended to the other ground leg it could accommodate 4 massive coils. As it is, two are more than enough. But don’t put more than a couple ml of juice in it as the rest will leak out. The chimney tube is not sealed at the top where it pokes through the top cap so there is no vacuum in the tank. There are two choices. Wick it so wick is packed in the juice channels or modify the design. The modification is easy enough, it involves a plastic tube and an o-ring to slide over the chimney tube as shown below.
Without this modification it will leak.
Taifun GT2/ GT-T V2/GTII-S
This atomizer has a unique design and is one of my all-time favorites. Highly recommended. It is very robust, easy to build and use, highly reliable, consistent and repeatable. The Kayfun may be a great beginner RTA but this one is better. The Taifun performs far better than any Kayfun with simple wicking. It is a variation of the juice over air design. The chimney is split into two sections and the base of the chimney has a slot for the wick ends. The air hole is a raised tube that will help prevent siphon leaking through the air passage. Note the odd length screws and one is a little shorter than the other. Both screws are insulated from the base deck but one is ground. There are many clones of the GT2 design and one is shown below.
We mount the coil, thread the wick through the coil, fold the wick ears up to pass through the chimney base then attach the chimney base and trim the wick flush with the side of the chimney base as shown below.
Then we wet the wick, attach the chimney top, fill and vape. It vapes great and can sustain a lot of power with ordinary juices. However with 100%VG it is prone to bubble locking as shown in the picture below.
The air bubble in the above pic from a clone called the TGT2 remained after I tilted it, shook it, flipped it upside down, and tapped on the side, several primer puffs, basically everything I could think of but never went away. I finally rolled it to get the air bubble away from the juice port and more bubbles got locked as I vaped. The knurling on the chimney top cap is nice for screwing the top cap on but coupled with a thicker glass tank does not allow sufficient clearance for the very viscous 100VG. Thinner e-Liquids may not have this problem but on the TGT2 the solution was to grind off the knurling above the juice channels.
The Hotcig clone of the Taifun is the TGT-IIS and it does not need modification, as the outside diameter of the chimney knurling is slightly smaller and the glass tank is slightly thinner allowing more and sufficient clearance for 100VG. The –IIS also has an added feature of the base being able to be completely disassembled. This has two advantages. If juice does in get the base from a leak it can be thoroughly cleaned. Secondly, the air holes in the side of the base can be milled out easily to increase airflow. With the SS mesh tube wicking method and its inherent increased juice flow and greater power sustaining ability, this increased airflow will make for a less restricted vape experience while maintaining the same vaporized e-Liquid to air ratio as a solid core Rayon wick i.e. the flavor density is maintained.
You will notice the bottom of the post screw heads are rounded and the post sleeves have little wall thickness. This can be problematic with 28G+ Ni200. So I use M2 SS washers.
When you wrap the wire for the coil, start with the wire to the left under the mandrel. This is called a counter clock wise coil. Looking at either end of the coil, following the wraps as they spiral in a CCW direction. This makes it easier to mount the wires with the shortest leg length and keeps the coil above the air hole.
When making the coil, use standard spaced coil technique by spreading the coil apart then smunching together on the mandrel and pulling on each end perpendicularly to the mandrel to take a half to full wrap off each end. Here I wrapped 9 wraps of 24G Ni200, spread, smunched and pulled one-half wrap off each end for a nicely spaced 8 wrap coil.
Keep the coil on the mandrel while tightening post screws.
Then pull the coil up with the mandrel for good clearance.
Attach the chimney base and pull the chimney base up to align the bottom of the juice channels with the bottom of the coil inside dimension.
Then wick with Rayon.
A better way to wick these is to cut the wick flush to the outside chimney and gently push the ends in the juice channels then blow in the juice holes to fluff out the wick ends inside the chimney. Don’t push in too far as the wick ends have to fit to the inside of the chimney to create a seal. If there is no seal it will leak.
You can use any little blue screwdriver or your coil mandrel to push the wicks in.
Alternatively, pull the wick ends inside the chimney and move the ends to cover the juice channels with the chimney cap off and then screw the chimney cap on. But I prefer the former method of pushing the wicks in and blowing on them. This method will vape 100VG at 20-24W on TP set to 360F.
The following wicking method came to me one day as I thought and wondered about how to make a hollow porous tube. I do not recommend this wicking method for a first timer. But I do recommend the GT2. It is nice to know how much better you can make your investment in a GT2 become just by using this wicking method. First, cut a strip of SS mesh so that it is wider than the GT2 chimney base. Then wrap it on a 2mm mandrel. I had some 2mm SS hobby rod and it can be found readily on line. I like to round the end of the hobby rod to make it easier to punch through the SS mesh tube. The size of mesh you use isn’t that important, I have tried various sizes from 80 threads per inch up to 500. They all work the same.
Once have one to two wraps of mesh cut it square to the mandrel then work the mesh on the mandrel with your fingers to get a nice tight wrap. Sometimes you can take the SS mesh tube off the mandrel and roll it with your thumbs and fore fingers for tighter compression then put it back on the mandrel.
We will then wrap the mesh with the outside layer of an OC pad. That outside layer is the toughest part of the OC pad and is usually discarded. But for this job, tough, thin and absorbent is what we want. Thin that layer by rubbing your thumb across the soft underside. We want it as thin as we can get without any holes or tears. Then we wrap it over the SS mesh one or two wraps and cut off the excess. Finally we wrap the coil wire around that placing the chimney base on the GT2 so the slots are perpendicular to the screws and set our new wick mandrel and all in the GT2 chimney slots and connect the coil legs to the posts.
Finally we snip off the excess wire from the legs and pull the mandrel half way out of the SS mesh tube wick. Then we clip off the side that the mandrel was pulled out of with side cutters and push and twist the mandrel back through to flare out the hole. Then repeat on the other side and install the chimney top cap.
When you are done, you can vape this wick at 24+ watts with TC set to 360F. I have pushed 35W through this wick using 8 wraps but that is way too much vapor for me. If the slots were widened to 3mm and a 3mm SS mesh tube wick used, it will take 40+ watts. For a single coil, that is amazing performance. What makes this wick technique work so well is the juice flow path length is the shortest it can be and the same length to every part of each wrap of the coil. It is not like a solid cotton or rayon wick where the path length varies to each wrap with the shortest being the outside wraps and the longest being in the middle. Juice has to travel the shortest distance possible and to every part of each wrap of each coil using this technique.
The original Authentic Taifun GT2 is flawless. There is sufficient gap between the inside of the glass tank and the outside of the chimney for bubbles even with my more viscous than motor oil 100VG juice. However I just can’t bring myself to modify my expensive authentic. So I do prefer the Hotcig GT-IIS clone although they are getting more difficult to find. Consider the pictures below. On the left is the original unmodified GT-IIS indicating the areas to be modified. On the right is the modified picture.
The juice slots in the GT2 are 2.5mm wide and the chimney top cap flattens out the wick when it is screwed in.
For a larger juice channel you can use a drill or milling machine, simply screw the top chimney cap on tight and drill out the juice slots to 1/8” or ~3mm. Try not to drill lower than the bottom of the chimney top cap. This makes it easy to use a 3mm+ build. Also the air holes in the base, 2 on the sides and 2 at a 45 degree angle in the deck bottom can be drilled or milled out. For these I used ~2mm bit. This opens up the air flow performance. Do not drill the center hole in the base unless you are going to insert a larger ID standoff tube to elevate the air passage off the deck. But that can be done as well. As it is, the stock GT-IIS is superb. These mods are not necessary, but they can take the -S into the 30W range in TP with great flavor density and more open draw.
I have not had an issue with the Hotcig GTII-S 510 center screw but I did on a Tobeco clone GTII. As the connection in the 510 varies, the vape performance will vary. Remove the 510 center screw, spring and insulator and replace with a standoff and cut with a dremel cutoff wheel to desired length. The standoffs are M2x12mmx15mm i.e. 3mm of M2 threaded post on the bottom.
Also, the original version of the GT is the same in concept only with a lot less air flow and performance. I prefer the glass tank and bigger air and juice on the version two’s.
As there are many variations on the Kayfun design there are many variations on the GT design such as the Hurricane and Firebird.
Notes; I own authentic and clones of several atomizer types which we will talk about later. Try the clones first and if you like them, get the authentic. In my opinion the Hotcig GT-IIS is the best of the clones and at one fifth the cost is less heart rendering when you go to modify it by drilling and milling. In fact even if you don’t do any modifications one could argue the Hotcig GTII-S is better than the authentic and for one fifth the cost.
There are many attys based on the Orchid design. Shown below is the version 6 style. It is very similar to the Billow. The tubes off the deck for the air holes is a nice feature as is the adjustable 510 center pin cap. The tubes help prevent leaks. The cap instead of a small screw typically used on attys is less wobbly and makes for better conductivity given the larger thread surface area.
But the build deck has three problems. First as in Orchid tradition, it uses the captive screw design and the threaded post holes are drilled too deep. So once again I am forced to make small snips of SS utility wire to fill in the holes or risk cutting the coil leg wires. Next the juice channels are too far apart for such a small air hole. And last it’s a small air hole. The ID of those tubes is about 1.6mm. That makes this atty a dual Kayfun in essence of performance.
As shown below the glass tank is polished on the ends which
is a nice tough. Many are just ground making it tough on seals. The tank seals
on this atty were glued on. Something I detest. Nothing a little everclear and
elbow grease couldn’t handle though.
The next problem is the air flow control. It requires a special allen wrench as shown above. I really dislike having to use tools to do simple things but it was easy to simply remove them and forget about them as this atty is fairly air restricted anyways. Juice fill is via a bottom base screw. I always prefer top fill. It vapes good though.
Shown below is the Aqua. It has juice control designed into the chimney.
Simply twist the chimney to decrease the channel depth. As shown below the air holes are small and the juice holes are large. The Aqua vapes fantastic. It uses thumbscrews to fasten the coil legs and the top is removed for refill. That makes it virtually tool free. No little blue screwdriver or allen wrench needed. The Aqua also has a unique adjustable center post screw. Not as good as a cap but definitely better than the run of the mill pan head screw.
There are two downsides to the Aqua though. It has a PMMA tank, glass is not an option. And the adjustable juice control chimney can turn when you remove the top cap for filling. It must be held in place when removing and installing the top cap or you can lose your juice control setting. Another option is to count turns. The Aqua vapes great and can sustain a good amount of power around 15W.
Shown below is the second iteration of the Aqua. It comes with a plastic and SS tank as well as a dripper topper. The dripper topper replaces the tank allowing the Aqua V2 to be used as either a RTA or RDA.
As I hate to drip and gave that up a while ago I have not tried it as such. But in the tank form it is a stunner. The V2 is Ni200 friendly if you place small clippings of SS utility wire in the bottom of the capture post screw holes. As you twist the tank, this opens up the air flow hole in the side as seen above and the juice flow. One action adjusts both air flow and juice flow. The air flow opened all the way up is a good medium draw. Not tight like a KF and not totally free like the Silverplay. The deck airholes are threaded, allowing one of the coils to be eliminated. So the Aqua V2 can serve as a single or dual coil fogger type build deck or as a dripper. Nice generous juice channels wicked as typical for fogger types with a mm of wick in the slots. The Aqua V2 easily sustains 20-25W with great flavor.
From project subohm at VaporDNA comes the Silverplay (SP) shown below. It does not come with a drip tip so you will have to use your own. I recommend a wide bore drip tip with a large through hole.
Above right shows the deck with dual massive airflow holes coupled with a massive chimney air hole and four huge juice channels. The tops of the juice channels are hollowed out a little larger. This is where the wick ends go making it easy to wick leaving just a mm in the channel that is typical with fogger like build decks. It will support 3mm coils as shown below. But it is a tight fit and great care must be taken to keep the coils from shorting out on the center post or chimney wall. Smaller coils like 2.5mm are more easily fit. A word of caution with the SP, do not dry burn or you melt the center post insulator. If you run in temperature protect and keep the temperature low though you won’t have this problem.
Below are the type of wide bore drip tips I like to use. Notice the double o-ring seal and the wide bore on both ends of the drip tip.
I have seen too many purported wide bore drip tips that are not and usually it is the 510 end that ends up having a small hole creating the obstruction. Remember for vacuum created by draw we do not want the obstruction after the juice ports. Having a vacuum inside the drip tip does us no good. These are plastic and come in multiple colors. But I have a single o-ring glass that looks very similar to this whose 510 end is restricted even though the mouth is larger. These flow better than the glass and stay attached to the atty better. I like the angled drip tips like this so I don’t have to tilt the mod as far. And the draw length also helps cool down the vape. Obviously glass or SS would cool more but I have yet to find one with the bore these have. And the Silverplay needs lots of bore.
The SP is a fantastic performer with unrestricted draw. It just gets started with flavor density at 40W using 28 gauge Ni200. But the SP does have a few drawbacks. First is the capture posts. The screws will cut Ni200 28gauge easily. This is mostly remedied by locking the screw post screw head in a pair of vice grips and swirling the screw end on a sharpening stone to round the point. Second, the bottom fill is touchy. Try to squeeze the fill bottle too hard and the juice will bypass the gap between the chimney and glass tank and go through the juice channels and out the air holes and drip tip. So go easy when refilling. The top cap has thin and sharp heat sink fins. They can be dulled with a wet stone. And lastly, because the gap between tank ID and chimney OD is small, it has a tendency to bubble lock. This is remedied by inverting the SP a few times until it releases and you will see the juice level in the glass window suddenly drop. Also the top rings are deep cut and while that helps as a heatsink to cool the vape, they are quite sharp. The edges can be removed with a small wet stone.
The second iteration of the RSBT has a unique deck air hole see below.
I really like the air flow slots in the deck. Huge juice channels too. Takes same build as Silverplay only a whole lot easier to fill being top fill stock. Since this pic I rebuilt using 14 wraps per side of 28 gauge Ni200 3mm. This thing can take long coils no problem. Given the slotted air hole, the entire coil length is getting air as opposed to one round hole in the center as in most attys. Sustaining all 40W of the DNA40 just like the Silverplay with fewer wraps. Slots in side of the SS protective sleeve are easier to see juice level than the Delta II but still needs to be more of them or wider. Glass tank edges are polished. Thick tank but better clearance to chimney sides than the GT II. Sleeve is a tight fit.
As loud as the Delta II and others on draw due to massive air flow and slotted air intakes. Not a whistle just air inrush. Even though the chimney top diameter is smaller than the Silverplay, draw is very unrestrictive. About the same as the Delta II with RBA cartridge and Melo with BVC cartridge. Which are less restrictive than the Lemo. Silverplay is less restrictive of all but not by much compared to this.
I put washers under the screws to limit the travel of the post screws as the capture posts are drilled too deep like all the rest and will cut the soft nickel wire using the through holes. I'll probably drop small snips of SS utility wire down the post screw holes so the bottom of the through holes are flush with the tops of the SS utility wire snips. Since there are only two post holes, it is a bit of a pain to thread two coils from either side and hold two coil mandrels in place while tightening the screws. Wicked with OC just at the top of the juice channels to just where the thread starts, this is 100VG friendly. But with only 40W I do have to close the AFC a bit to get flavor density like all the rest of the unrestrictive draw attys.
I like this better than the SP as it’s easier to fill and the Silverplay top cap rings are sharp. Maybe a future iteration of either will have the air slots like this, the chamfered top of the juice channels like the SIlverplay, a top fill like this and capture posts with four screws like the Silverplay and others and maybe just maybe somebody will figure out how to not drill the posts past the bottoms of the through holes. But I'm probably asking for too much.
It has a fixed 510 center pin which can be a problem for some mods. But works well with a spring loaded or adjustable 510 center pin mod.
The Goblin is a small atty with unrestricted draw shown below. In the middle picture the Silverplay is on the left and the Goblin on the right for a size comparison. In the right most picture the Silverplay is on the left and the Goblin on the right.
Notice the restriction of the chimney hole on the Goblin as compared to the Silverplay. That makes the airflow of the Goblin about equivalent to the RSBT. Also notice the massive air holes on the deck similar to the Silverplay. While it may not look like it, the slots in the RSBT II flow the same amount of air as the Goblin and Silverplay deck holes. The only real difference between the three is the size of the chimney hole. In fact you can reduce the AFC of the RSBT II and the Goblin to about halfway and not notice a difference. Having the air flow restriction after the juice channels does not increase vacuum in the chamber and does not pull juice into the chamber as much as having the restriction before the juice channels/chamber. Carefully closing the AFC on the RSBT II and Goblin until a slight change in draw resistance is felt will increase chamber vacuum and pull in juice. The more the restriction the more vacuum and the more juice is pulled. Using Ni200 30 gauge dual 8 wrap 2.5mm coils on the Goblin and it sustains 28W wicked with KDG just touching the build deck. The limited space on the Goblin build deck limits the size of the coil that can be used without shorting to the chimney base or top.
This is one of my favorite RTAs along with the Kaiser. They all share the same horizontal wick through chimney above air hole design. The Rose V2 by Eden mods performs out of the box without any modification superbly well with 100% VG and Ni200 wire. Some people have difficulty in building it but I found it quite easy. It flows juice like crazy. I like it better than the Kaiser because the adjustable juice flow control is a lot easier to use and it has a small pipe for the air hole inlet that helps prevent siphoning leaks. That comes with two drawbacks though. First the drip tip is integrated into the design and therefore not 510 and not customizable/replaceable without modification. Second, it comes with a SS tank midsection but for a juice level view you’ll have to use the plastic tank midsection. I am not a fan of plastic tanks. However the Rose V2 performance is so outstanding and flavor is so superb that these outweigh the drawbacks of fixed drip tip and plastic tank. No need to pre-wet the wick on build because it flows juice so amazingly well. Just fill, screw on top cap and unscrew the juice control by turning the drip tip a turn at a time. Around 5 turns and a notch in the drip tip chimney becomes visible and is the visual indicator that you are at maximum juice flow. At that point one more turn will completely unscrew the chimney from the deck. With a couple turns, in 60s the wick is wet and ready to vape. The amount you turn will depend on the amount of wicking used. So start with 2 turns then adjust from there for a 3mm wick/coil.
It also comes with a base mount that doubles as a tool to take the base apart as shown below.
Notice the tiny hole in the chimney at the top of the vaporization chamber shown above lower left.
As shown above, wrap 8 to 9 turns of Ni200 on a 3 to 3.5mm mandrel pinching the legs together so they are pointing straight down from the coil in the middle, wick the coil with KGD or Rayon, trim to a bow tie and split the ends.
As shown above, four large juice channels and one tiny air hole. There is a short pipe standing off the deck for the air hole, this makes it much more resilient to leaking and is a big improvement over the Kaiser. I only wish the air hole was a slot like the RSBT2.
Insert the coil legs into the juice cup holes and trim them so the level of the build is the same as the slots in the cup then screw them down with the included Allen wrench and the side capture screw posts in the base, fit the split bow tie wick into the slots and trim flush to the sides. Screw on tank and chimney all the way and fill then add top cap. Back off Chimney 4 or 5 turns and watch the bubbles rise. Wait 60 seconds or until the bubbles stop and you’re ready to vape at 16-18W. The draw is tight, similar to a filtered 100. Spectacular flavor.
As mentioned above the air hole in the top of the chimney is quite small. Performance can be improved by drilling that to 1/8”. This reduces the airflow restriction but also greatly increases vacuum in the vaporization chamber. Remember, we want the restriction before the juice channels not after to create vacuum to pull the juice in. This resulted in a 2W increase in sustainable power for my 3mm build.
It is also possible to run a vertical coil build in the Rose V2 and Kaiser cup designs using a sandwich wick technique. Vertical coils often result in more sustainable power and better airflow. The only downside is a long leg coming down from the top of the coil. It can be improved by welding heavier gauge for the leg(s) to the coil. I find the horizontal build to work just fine though.
The Focloud from Focuscig has dripper like juice wells and is 100% VG and Ni200 friendly (with vertical coils) shown below.
The tank bottom has 4 holes that juice flows through to surround the base of the vaporization chamber. From there the juice passes through two holes, one for each well, into the juice wells. Therefore it is wicked like a dripper with wicking in the wells to serve as a juice reservoir close to the coils.
Above it is built with dual verticals, 2mm, 10 wraps each, 30 gauge Ni200 and Rayon wick with DNA-40 set to 18W at 410F. Take a long pinch of Rayon and roll it and flatten it then divide in two and twist the ends and snip. Feed the ends through on the inside between the posts so when pulled tight, the wrap on the outside is flat against coil to prevent interference with the chimney when it is screwed on. It is best to insert a mandrel in the coil when tightening to prevent wicking from cutting through the coil and obstructing the airflow. Then snip the ends with good overhang and tuck them in the juice wells.
Given the screw locations not sure how a horizontal build would work as Ni200 coils for a dual coil atty need to be long to get the total resistance around .1 ohm or greater.
Filling the tank as normal with an RTA so there is an air pocket at the top of the tank, the Focloud has great flavor on par with Rose V2 at first. However, after vacuum in top of tank builds up, juice flow slows and therefore doesn't sustain as much power and therefore doesn't vaporize as much e-Liquid as well as the Rose V2 with a single coil for chain vaping with 100VG. So flavor density at first is good then gets weaker. And I left the juice ring off. If I close the AFC and draw sharply it bubbles and flows juice and is back to good flavor for a bit. Like most attys thinner e-Liquid will work better. Air flow is less restrictive than Rose V2. It has an adjustable 510 center post SS screw with flat blade slot. One can remove the build deck without emptying the tank and fill with a needle tip through one of the four juice holes. I fill it by holding the tank against top cap and unscrewing tank bottom cap and deck together using a standard narrow nose bottle which is much easier. It is highly polished and has decent threads. It does not come with a drip tip. It does come with a couple extra screws, o-rings, and OC. I like the concept but out of box first build, the Rose V2 performed better for me.
There is a “reverse vacuum” claim by the manufacturer. I don't know what they mean by "reverse" vacuum. The vacuums works like any other tank. There is one at the top of the tank that helps restrict juice flow. Then there is the vacuum in the vaporization chamber created by your draw due to the greatest air restriction being before the vaporization channel/juice channels. The vacuum created by your draw is supposed to overcome the vacuum at the top of the tank by pulling juice in. With other attys there is also restriction from wicking being in the juice channels that has to be overcome. There is a reverse flow of air through the juice channels. As tank vacuum builds up it will pull air in through the juice channels resulting in bubbles inside the tank rising to the top. Bubbles are good. Without them, you are not flowing juice and can get dry hits or worse. As with all RTAs, if the seal at the top of the tank or chimney comes loose then the atty will flood and leak. What makes these different, the Focloud, and Rose V2 and to some extent the Flash E and Taifun GT2 is there is a well for the juice below the air port in the vaporization chamber that reduces the probability of flooding and leaks especially siphon leaks. The juice wells on the Focloud is the deepest I have seen in a tank and there is no wicking in the juice channels per se but the vacuum principles are the same. So I'm not sure what they mean.
I have noticed that if the juice level is 2/3 or less it keeps up just fine with chain vaping at 18W and 410F. Over that fill level and it doesn't. Which isn't the first time I've seen that with my 100% VG. A smaller air pocket at the top of the tank has more vacuum then a larger air pocket. But most tanks need around 20% of volume for an air pocket. This one likes a tad more.
So I would say the Focloud will provide more margin due to the deep juice wells to floods and leaks. In that regard, it is very similar to the Flash-E. That doesn't mean it won't. It just means it is more resistant and less likely. However if extra wicking isn't packed in its well or its over saturated then any juice that is in the well will leak out the air hole if put on its side where the air hole is.
Glass Hurricane V2
Similar to GT2 there are three versions, a glass tank clone with a weird deck and a plastic tank version and the Firebird. This is the Glass Hurricane V2.
Glass edges polished
Slightly better airflow than GT2
AFC with detents
Excellent simple wick performance
Nice post screws
Tank top, chimney stem and chimney top will not come apart easily
Bottom tank ring difficult to grip
My favorite has been the GT-S V2, both the Hurricane and GT claim 5ml capacity, this is shorter and wider than the tall and narrow GT.
This is just as easy to wick as the GTs even though the chimney bottom looks weird. You can see it in teh stock FT pics. Yes the wick slots in the chimney base are aligned with the posts which seems illogical. On the GTs I found the best performing wick to be a tube of SS mesh and then a cover of OC, both single layer. Performance with that wick on a DNA is around 24W or 24J on an SX350J sustained as opposed to a simple OC or rayon wick around 18W. A simple rayon figure "S" wick on this Hurricane performs at 20W and a dual S at 24W.
I clean all new attys regardless of origin or odor with everclear. I do smell them first just to see how bad they are. This one wasn't the worst but definitely smelled.
The chimney base stays in place with allen set screws and it is slotted at the posts so you cannot rotate it to align the wick slots perpendicular to the posts like in a GT. However, this base does serve as a shelf for the wick and while the base does not have to be removed, removal does make the task of securing coil legs easier though I was able to do it.
This Hurricane is designed to use a figure "S" wick, and it works good. However I found slightly better performance (24W sustained) by halving each tail coming out of the coil ends and using two opposing figure "S"'s. Secure the coil perpendicular to the posts, slide the chimney base over the coil and posts, secure with allen set screws. Or if you don't take the chimney base off, just secure the coil perpendicular to the posts. Because the chimney base lip sits above the posts, this may be difficult for some but I was able to do it. Then pull wick through the coil leaving long tails, separate both tails into halves, lay the four tails on the shelf coming out of the coil and encircling around to each post then pull behind the posts and through the slots, two halves through each slot. Trim flush with outside of chimney. If tails are too thin, then double over one or both tail ends coming back through the slot and lay along the shelf back towards the coil end. Or...just slip the half behind the post pushing a little through the slot and lay it on the wick deck continuing to circle around towards the other end of the coil. The wick tails will lay on the goofy looking deck encircling the ID of the chimney base but serve as a juice saturated reservoir feeding the coil much like a dripper. And since that deck is raised above the air inlet, there is no siphoning and it doesn't leak. Several options here
There is enough chimney to tank clearance for air bubbles from the wick slots to clear the chimney cap with 100VG. Same as with the S GT V2. This was an issue with one of the other GT2's for me that liked to vapor lock with bubbles right at the chimney wick slots.
Although airflow is slightly better than GT V2 it is not wide open DTL. As I am able to achieve the same power at TC temp with simple rayon wick compared to the more complicated OC and SS mesh tube wick on the GTS2 and the taste is very similar. Making this an easier build to get the same performance/vape experience.
However filling is slightly more difficult on this Hurricane stock. On the GT I just invert and unscrew the top and tank then fill to the o-ring on the chimney stem. Plenty of room between chimney stem and inside of glass tank. On this Hurricane, unscrewing the top is more difficult as there is less area to grip on the bottom below the tank. Basically there is a fit ring for the o-ring on the bottom and thats it to grab. Also, since the chimney top cap comes locked on the chimney stem, there is less gap between the chimney top and glass tank. I found tilting the tank wrt the chimney top cap allows clearance for filling. The best solution is to unscrew the chimney top cap from the stem and fill to the bottom of the stem threads. Screw the chimney top cap on the chimney base just like GTS2 then screw the tank onto the base keeping everything inverted.
However, the chimney cap was locked to the chimney stem on this one. I couldn't even get it apart with a wet towel and pliers. So out to the shop I went. I used two 8" vice grips and leather straps to get it unscrewed. And found out why it was locked. They had used thread locker. Not loctite but just as strong. It had a milky white color. That may or may not be an issue for some folks. On the GT, the chimney stem slides in the chimney cap with o-ring on the stem versus screws on like the Hurricane with no o-ring. The Hurricane screw-on chimney stem and chimney top cap design makes juice control troublesome at best and in practice I find impractical as the top tank o-ring fits the ID of the glass tank, but the bottom 0-ring fits to the bottom edge of the glass tank. So if the tank is not screwed on tight, it will leak at the bottom of the tank. Another pet peeve is o-rings glued on to glass tanks. The bottom o-ring was glued on. Not a big deal as the everclear desolves the glue so remove and clean or replace. But at least on the GT you can unscrew the chimney cap a little bit and then re-attach the tank. In practice though, I don't use it. I control the juice flow with amount of wick through the slots. But this may be a problem for some.
I am OK with the goofy looking chimney bottom on this one. There are only two improvements I'd like to see:
1) Don't thread lock the chimney stem to chimney top cap.
2) Make the tank bottom ring taller or knurl it for easier grip.
Others I have but haven’t pictured or wrote up yet (work in progress):
CHA 26650 Chariot
Rose performance which is quite good, you either like the caged look or you don’t. A big tank for 26650 tube mods or large box mods. On a single 16650 mod it looks like a pachyderm on a pimple.
Dual coil, similar to RSBT nut better.
Dual coil, velocity build deck. Unrestricted vape needs lots of power to get flavor density.
Similar to Flash-e.
Similar to Flash-e.
a.k.a Kayfun with even more restricted airflow.
Similar to Lemo with some improved features.
Similar to Rose V2/Kaiser/CHA 26650 Chariot. Shown below on a DNA200 box mod I built.
The Bachelor uses a bottom build cup deck design much like the Rose but without the ceramic and with much larger juice channels as shown below.
As with the Rose and Kaiser it can be built using a horizontal or vertical coil. Wicking the horizontal is straight forward and Rayon gives the best performance in wick center builds. For coil center builds, usually vertical, OC tends to works better. But either OC or Rayon as shown below will work.
Similar to Hurricane V2 comes in titanium or SS and silver, black or gold colors.
Here is a comparison of the larger tanks to the Big Tank.
L-R SKing, Hotcig Big Tank, CHA Chariot 26650, KF V4 Plus, Arnold, Wolverine.
SKing is not an RTA it is a glassomizer but does use Arctic coils, not the Turbo, the original Arctic. If you can rebuild coil cartridges the original Sunone is pretty standard. Holds 10ml has JFC and AFC, top or bottom fill.
Hotcig Big Tank is a clone of the German Big Tank and has a SS or plastic tank, JFC, AFC, 10ml.
CHA Chariott 26650 is a coil cup design like the Rose or Bachelor with AFC and limited JFC, 7ml.
KF V4 Plus aka Big or 26650 is just like a KF V4, 6ml.
The Arnold is a genesis style, not readily available, 6ml.
The Wolverine is 19ml. It does need modification for the chimney top tank to have a seal. Airflow in build area is parallel to build deck through side slots in a ceramic posipost insulator. Huge heavy chunk of SS.
So the Big Tank is big, but not the largest and there are even glassomizers that hold as much e-Liquid as it does.
The Vaporz Cloud Mega Tank comes in two sizes, the 25mm and the 30mm. Those sizes being the measurement of the outside diameter of the tanks.
The build deck style is very reminiscent of the Billow supporting dual coils with a wide raised lip air hole under the coils. The 25mm holds around 5ml of e-Liquid and the 30mm holds around 10ml of e-Liquid. The 30mm can support massive coils but the 25mm supports coils even larger than the Billow. Both of these tanks are very good performers because they both have very large juice slots. There is a juice flow control ring under the chimney base that can be set only when assembling the atty. Some people invert this ring with teeth upwards. Trim your wicks to the bottom of the ring or chimney base and use a small flat blade screwdriver to push the ends up into the chimney so they are not showing through the juice flow slots and you have a very good performer.
The Krixus is an amazing performer. Ceramic heating elements are finally going in a good direction. The concept is sound, encasing some type of metal, in this case Tungsten, in ceramic and sintering to over 1000F. But, I need to see mass spectrometer analysis of vapor coming off these ceramics before I can call them "safe". It is a rewickable atomizer which may generate a new category of atomizer. You can reuse the vertical ceramic cylinder and just replace the wick. Or you can change out the ceramic or use the ceramic in another cartridge. But the cartridge is threaded and meant to be rewicked. You can also replace the ceramic with wire if you wish but the ceramic performs very well. Instead of a ceramic tube that depends on porosity, the Krixus ceramic tube has slots formed into it. The main drawback on the Krixus is the lack of a JFC. I always like to see JFC on a top fill atty.
What makes the Alleria by Augvape unique is the glass chimney which also serves as the JFC. The see-through design allows you to see the status of your build, how saturated it is and any black gunk buildup. The drip tip is the control for the JFC. Though you can use other standard 510 drip tips, they won't have the dog ears for actuating the JFC. It is a dual coil build with a ring much like the VCMT except the build ring is press fit and not meant to be removed. However it can be pried off with a flat blade screwdriver and then pressed back into place.
The coil leg capture holes are drilled too deep which is atypical for velocity style decks. Using a milling bit the sharp edges can be removed towards the bottom of the holes so it won't cut your wire when you tighten the screws. There is also a lot of flashing around the outside of the threaded holes that needs to be removed with a flat file.
It is top fill and thankfully it has a JFC which I expect to see on a top fill. The top fill ports are large enough so no needles are necessary.
All the information contained in these pages are only the opinions of the author and the author is not an expert at anything.