What is an e-cigarette?



      Electronic cigarette ( abb. e-cigarette or e-c) is in fact a pocket inhalator , which can be helpful during the process of quitting with the fatal addiction of traditional cigarettes ( called analogue cigarettes by e-smokers).

 

 
          
                                     

 How does it work?


      One part of e-cigarette ( cartridge) contains solution formed mostly by base ( carrier), supplemented by aroma and certain amount of nicotine (however, this component is not necessary). While inhaling, his solution becomes heated by heating part, placed in a battery – atomizer and creates vapour, which we breathe in by a mouthpiece and breathe out later on. This vapour can resemble a nicotine smoke, but it is only an impression. By definition, smoke contains constant substances and in case of the vapour this condition is not fulfilled. What is more, the vapour is odour- free, so it doesn’t bother other people in our surroundings. Moreover, it doesn’t contain any carcinogen substances, tar bodies, carbon monoxide etc. The last but not least important part of the e-cigarette is the battery, which passes electric current to the heater of the atomizer. It is worth emphasising that there is no combustion of any substances. It is said that there is no smoke without a fire, however in this case this saying is not true. Now, a few words about history of this invention. The first patent for this device was applied for in the USA, but the modern history starts in 2003, when Chinese company Ruyan patented an inhalator, based on ultrasonic method of creating vapour. So, China is the country of origin of the biggest inventions such as an compass, paper, china, powder and ... e-cigarette. Let’s start! Before you decide – let’s debunk some myths concerning smoking
There exists some myths concerning e-cigarette, in fact rooted in marketing. My aim is to be honest, so I will try to discuss those issues in a few sentences.

 

Myth no 1 – E-cigarettes are completely harmless


      False. There is not enough clear information regarding their influence. For sure, nicotine is harmful. Up till now, research on propylene glycol (major part of the liquid) shows lack of harmful effect. For certain, e-cigarettes are less harmful, as they do not contain four thousand of substances present in traditional cigarettes. What is more, they don’t contain any cancerous substances. What is important, they totally eliminate the problem of passive smoking- people in the surroundings do not suffer. To sum up, we are not sure of all effects of e-cigarettes, but we know how tobacco affects our health. For me the decision was obvious.



Myth no 2 – e-smoking can save 80% of previous smoking budget


      Rather false. Theoretically, it is possible to save a lot, but an e-smoker has to buy a new equipment from time to time. Batteries and atomizers are still not perfect. Not many people can have only one e-cigarette, as people tend to become collectors. Chain smokers are the ones who will save the most. We should look at this issue from a different angle – using e-cigarettes we stay healthier, which is the most valuable thing.
 
 

Myth no 3 – e-cigarette tastes like the traditional one


      False. There exist some liquids similar to tobacco taste, but there is always a difference. The taste is not worse, but different. After some time, it is possible to get used to it, especially as you gradually forget the traditional taste. For sure you will find something delicious as are so many tastes to choose from.
 
 

Myth no 4 e-cigarettes can be used everywhere


      In fact true, but…. E-smoking is still uncommon, so seeing someone puffing in a shopping centre, plane or hospital is a bit odd. Formally, e-smoker is right, but quite often you have to explain what is going on. On the other hand, you can smoke in many places where the analogue cigarettes are really dangerous.
 


Myth no 5 – e-smoking is as easy as traditional smoking


      Absolutely false! This manual is the proof – have you ever seen a book for beginner analogue smokers? We have to be prepared for charging the battery, cleaning the atomizer, adding drops of liquid and changing refills. We will have to practice smoking itself. It will take some time at the beginning, but it’s easy to become a professional. I was totally aware of all these issues when I decided to switch to e-smoking. Absolutely, I don’t regret my choice. I want to emphasize that all of us are different and you have to make up your mind. If you decide to try, bearing in mind all those issues, I invite you to further reading.

 

aroma

e-smoking

cigarette

How to choose the appropriate e-cigarette for yourself?



      The answer for this question is not easy as it requires bearing in mind some issues. I do not recommend buying an e-cigarette on the spur of the moment, as the decision won’t be right and we can become daunted. However, we want to switch into less harmful addiction, don’t we?


      I have noticed that people who aren’t prepared before buying the first e-cigarette, get easily
discouraged. Quite often the devices are sold as usual goods, without advising the beginner how to start a new phase.


      How to get prepared? I will give you some universal tips, but the topic is quite broad and it is possible to write a separate book about it. Generally, it is necessary to answer two key questions:

- how many cigarettes do I smoke?
- do I want to deal with filling the device, preparing to smoking etc.


       ‘Social’ smoker, who smokes a few weak cigarettes, can choose between different types. A heavy smoker, who smokes more than a packet a day, has a limited choice as the ‘mini’ type is automatically eliminated, or it means buying three sets at once. Such a smoker should look for a model which includes more than 1 ml of liquid. Otherwise, he will spend half a day dismantling and adding liquid the e-cigarette, which doesn’t make sense.


      I recommend visiting one of shops which sells e-cigarettes, talking to the assistant and looking at the device for a while. In many places you can meet really competent people. It would be great if your assistant was an e-smoker, willing to share his experience.


      One more thing – it doesn’t make sense to look for the cheapest, no-name device. E-cigarette is quite a big expense, so an unsatisfactory product would be waste of money. I will add that there exist some distributors who sell products under their name. Usually their goods is tasted by users and meet the standards. Good luck !
Falcon e-cigarette manager

Szymon Sokol

e-cigarette

consulting

Types of e-cigarettes in brief



      Classifying of the e-cigarettes is still at the starting point. New models have been launched so it’s difficult to classify it at the moment. I won’t use any brand names or recommend any producers as I would like this manual to be universal, but for advice I invite you to read internet forums.


      Unfortunately, it is impossible to recommend one e-cigarettes suitable for all beginners. The best solution is to read some specifications, then visit a traditional shop, look, and choose model and colour. It is really important to know what you are looking for. The assistant may not be willing to help and it can happen that a chain smoker will buy a tiny e-cigarette, with a refill for 20 inspirations.



E-cigarettes consisting of three parts
Super-mini ( so-called micro)



      The smallest e-cigarettes, similar in size to analogues. The length is up to 10 cm, while diameter reaches 9 mm, reserved for social smokers. The capacity does not exceed 0,3 ml ( few drops), so they require frequent refills. The liquid refill is enough for several dozens of inspirations, so it is an equivalent of few analogues cigarettes.

 

Mini



       Medium size- 10-14 cm, diameter up to 9 mm, so a bit bigger than an analogue cigarette, for moderate smokers, often used as a spare model.

 


     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Size of the refill is twice as big as a super mini, so it is an equivalent of half of traditional packet. One of the most common and developed types, very popular and available in many versions. Great choice for the beginning.


 
 Pen style



      E-cig which is quite long ( 14-16 cm), similar to a pen, designed for real-addicts but the usage requires a bit of skill, that’s why it is less common among beginners.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 Capacity of the refill reaches more than 1 ml (20 drops and more), and it’s sufficient for about 300 inspirations, so it is an equivalent of 20 traditional cigarettes. It’s enough for a smoker of one packet for a stress-free day.

 

E-pipe



      The shape resembles a real pipe; there aren’t many types on the market.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


      Very big capacity of the refill – equivalent of up to 3 packets of cigarettes, the battery is really durable and cheap. The biggest disadvantage is high price of the pipe and atomizer. There exist some smaller versions, so-called mini e-pipes. What is important, the refill is of the same size as in a pen-style ( the same type of atomizer). The big version is getting more and more popular, the smaller is not.


E-cigar



      The size and shape resemble a classic cigar, but it has a special, flat mouthpiece.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


      There are a few models available on the market, but they are rather uncommon in Poland. The capacity of the refill is quite big – equivalent of two packets of cigarettes, the battery is durable. This type is recommended for connoisseurs, rather than for beginners.


Stick



       Quite common and popular model, which doesn’t resemble a cigarette at all ( some people claim that stick looks like a harmonica).

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       The only thing that differentiates the stick is powering. Long -lasting battery and wide choice of atomizers are an advantage. Unfortunately, the high price of the stick is discouraging. Recommended for beginners. What is more, when hidden in the hand, inhaling is very discreet.


 Screwdriver



      The name explains it all. The device looks like a small, bulging screwdriver. Designed for heavy smokers, with very capacious and cheap battery, and a big refill. Majority of those products are heavy and are not recommended for beginners. The type is slowly getting popular in Poland.


 Two-part e-cig



       Different category of e-cigarettes, similar to mini version and to analogue cigarette. It has a so-called cartomizer instead of a separate atomizer and cartridge (theoretically disposable, practically indestructible).

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      It is user-friendly, so it’s recommended for beginners, capacity reaches 1ml, so it is an equivalent of 20 cigarettes. Efficiency is similar to a pen, while the shape is close to a mini. The battery is of a medium capacity, but you can buy more efficient ones at present. There aren’t many models on the market but they are getting more and more popular.

types

Where to buy it?


 
      After learning a few facts about types, it’s time to search the market. Experienced users tend to buy on internet shops or auctions. For beginners it can be a better idea to visit a traditional, local shop. In case of any defects, you can simply go there and exchange the faulty product. Guarantee is also very important factor, as well as personal opinion of an assistant ( on condition that he is an e-smoker). Shops with e-cigs are more common – especially in shopping centres. After we become more experienced, we will find our favourite brand and supplier. Occasional problems with devices are something normal.

Chapter for the impatient ones



      Everyone who has bought an e-cigarette wants to taste it immediately. That is something natural. Well, let’s do that! This description is a short instruction, but I do recommend starting with the manual added to your e-cig.

 

       If we have two-parts cigarette, it’s easy to start. Remove silicon caps from cartomizers and the safety pin from the hole on the right side of the thread. Then, carefully screw cartimizer to the battery. Notice that there is a small hole between those two parts, which is intentional and is not a defect. That’s the place through which air goes to your lungs. If your battery is automatic ( there is no button on the casing), you can start immediately. If you have manual battery, for inhaling time ( no longer!) you have to put the button on. Inhale slowly, observing a diode at the end of the battery – it should have the light on and switch off when the air stops flowing. Is it working? Do you feel smoke in your throat? Great – welcome in the world of e-smokers.

 

      In case of an e-cig consisting of 3 parts, you must do some extra things. First of all, remove a cartridge of the mouthpiece which is a dummy, get rid of a security cap of a real refill and place it in the mouthpiece.

 

      The mouthpiece with refill must be connected with atomizer and finally, joined with a battery. We connect them, screwing one into another in clockwise direction. We inhale slowly, remembering about switching in button (in case of manual battery).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     

      E-smoking requires some practice, but is rather easy to learn and we will soon be able to release bigger puffs, without affecting people in our surroundings. Remember that in case of e-cig it is essential to inhale slowly. Sometimes, you will need to make few breathe-ins for the start, but after heating the atomizer, it should work perfectly.

 

impatient

Help – it doesn’t work!


       Don’t panic – it happens and usually it doesn’t mean that our device is broken, but lack of power of liquid. Let’s check that – first of all change battery which can be dead. Second, check if liquid is still there. Take the mouthpiece out and put a few drops of liquid, after checking condition of wadding in the refill. It’s good idea to put a few drops on the atomizer’s net as well. Put all parts together, wait a minute for the liquid to circulate and try. In most cases it works, but if it doesn’t you must check and clean atomizer (go to chapter about atomizers) or change the wadding in the refill ( go to chapter about cartridges). If it doesn’t help, we should ask somebody more experienced – search forums or ask in a traditional shop.

checking

checking

forums

What is worth having – user must- have equipment


       Beginners often wonder what is necessary to start e-smoking. In a typical set, you will find complete device, some extra cartridges and a battery. It that enough? Absolutely not!


       First of all, you must work out what sort of charger do you have. It’s good to have both types – traditional and powered by USB. Two batteries are the absolute minimum, even though you will be forced to buy an extra one. Sensible e-smoker has more than one additional atomizer – the element that breaks the most frequently, as lack of it is a total failure. Of course, it concerns only three-parts cigarettes.


       It’s a good idea to purchase some types of liquid in small bottles ( 5 ml) to try different tastes and find the perfect one. Cartridges in the set get used very fast, so you will have to replace them. For comfortable usage you will need: s paper-clip, toothpicks or something similar, paper towel or tissues. I will explain this matter later on.


       What is more, you will need some kind of box to carry e-cigarette. It can be a typical cigarette case, but many people ( including author) use pencil case. If someone spends a lot of time outside, with no power source, should consider buying PPC – charger for e-cig. You can read about it in next chapter.

                                
 

toothpicks

Powering – a few words about batteries, feeders and chargers


       Before elements of solution get into e-smoker organism, the solution must vaporize. In a e-cig, this process is possible due to electric heater placed in atomizer, which must be powered by efficient source.

 

       Battery decides upon size and weight of our product. Tiny batteries make e-cig similar in size to analogue ones, but it means smaller efficiency as well, which is connected with a need for frequent charging and possessing a few batteries. Big batteries live longer, but are heavy. Well, you are to choose – lightness or efficiency.

 

 

 

      

      The battery, colour diode imitating embers and microprocessor are placed in a cylindrical muff. Besides, in some battery types, there are vacuum sensors or acoustic that start powering or mechanical ones – in case of manual batteries. Remember that batteries are quite delicate – if they fall on the floor, it’s probably the end. Be careful with acoustic batteries, as they may start working because of noise from outside and burn the atomizer. If you have such a battery, screw it to atomizer only for inhaling time.

 

       Bear in mind that the battery has uncovered points of contact, which are located close to each other. Holding it in a pocket with different metal items can result in short circuit, which can destroy the battery or even cause an explosion. My advice is to put a silicone cap on (used in cartomizers etc.) - it will save the battery.

 

       Another thing to care about is the level of liquid, which shouldn’t excess the standard, otherwise it can flood the battery. Holding and carrying an e-cigarette with mouthpiece at the top is
a very common mistake, which can result in penetration of liquid inside the battery, which has negative consequences. The device should always be carried horizontally or with diode at the top.

 

       A typical lithium ion battery has voltage of 3,6V and capacity of 100 – few hundreds mAh. As those batteries are quite modern, there is no need of so called forming ( sometimes called formatting which is wrong). After buying a new battery, you should start using it till noticing signal of being dead (usually multiple flickering of diode).

 

       Quite often you will notice ( before diode starts signalling) that the battery is running out by smaller amount of vapour and less intensive taste. In that case, you should charge the battery. There are two types of batteries: power charger and USB. In case of the first one, plug it in (230 V), screw the battery into appropriate hole. The charger usually has some indication of status – a two –colour diode. Red usually indicate the process of charging, the green (or blue) one means that charging is over. The process usually takes about 1-3 hours, depending on capacity of the battery, degree of discharge, condition of the battery , temperature etc.

 

 

      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      If you work on the computer, it’s good idea to have a USB charger, which is universal for most types of batteries. In this case, batteries are put inside by pushing, not screwing. You must be careful with that, making sure that the battery is put straight into the charger. Switching on is indicated by change of diode’s colour ( depends on the type – I have got blue and red indication).

 

       I remind that it’s good to have one extra battery ( often included in starter kit), not to get stressed while charging.

 

       Please remember that the battery wears off with time, so after a few weeks or months, we will be forced to buy a new one. Some producers claim that the batteries are designed for 500 cycles of charging, other claim only 200. From experience, the second version is closer to reality.

 

       It’s good to care about condition of battery, mainly the thread and point of contact. After some time, the thread of battery gets dirty, which is connected with its darkening. It’s not the issue of appearance but dirty contacts are less efficient. So, from time to time (every 2-3 days), it’s good to spare a moment for cleaning, but avoid sharp objects which can damage the surface.

 

       Wooden toothpicks or matches are very practical, but remember about holes in the threads. You must be very careful, to prevent channels in which air flows.

 

       Finally, an advice and warning – don’t use any substances for protecting points of contact. The thread would be well maintained but the taste would be rather unpleasant. Besides, it can cause the flooding of battery.

 

Battery on a cable – charging by USB

 

      An e-cigarette can be charged directly by port USB, using USB passthrough, which is similar to a traditional battery. The difference is that instead of a diode at the end, there is an USB plug. Connecting this adaptor will enable usage of e-cig, without thinking of charging. In many cases, that kind of powering is more effective than using a battery and we get bigger puffs.


       There are two types of USB adapters. One types is only charging, so after turning computer off it gets useless. The second kind, has a spare battery inside and enables using passthrough also after turning off the power. Of course, you should remember about maintenance and cleaning the threat and points of contact.

 

       USB adapter can also be connected to typical 230 V socket, if we buy and extra adapter 230V/USB. Be careful when choosing it, as most of them do not meet high, power standards. If everything works well, the adapter should give current of at least 1500 mA (1,5 A). Rule of thumb – take your passthrough to shop and check the usage. People who spend much time in car, would be interested in car charger – in this case you should use car lighter.
Pocket chargers

 

      The basic problem of e-smoker is charging. What will happen if you run out of power? Producers react fast for any changes on the market and they invented a device which enables leaving the house without worrying. It is so called PCC (personal charger casing), that can be used as a box for carrying e-cigarette parts and a battery of big capacity, reaching 1200 to 2000 mAh, which enables charging 5-10 batteries in theory ( in practice 3-6). Nevertheless, it’s enough for a heavy smoker go leave the house.

 

       The charger has an USB port, so after arriving at home we connect it to proper socket on computer or to USB adapter and next day it’s ready to use. Some producers claim that it can be used for 300 cycles of charging, but it’s not verified. In my opinion, realistic number would be 150. PCC is designed for charging partially used battery, rather than charging a totally used one.

Atomizer


       It’s the centre and heart of an e-cigarette. In fact, the name is misleading as it doesn’t deal with atoms, but only heats the liquid to vaporize ( should be called nebulizer).

 

 

      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      At the bottom, there is a porous element made of metal. This part is joined to wadding in the cartridge and by means of so-called capillary forces transports liquid down to heater ( invisible part – inside the metal tube).

 

       Atomizer is part of e-cigarette, which requires special care. If you spend a moment everyday on maintenance, it would work relatively long. However, it’s the most sensitive part of e-cigarette. That’s why it’s important to have a reserve, as it’s problematic when atomizer stops working.

 

       Atomizer works in quite extreme conditions, reaching 150 C. Vaporization takes place on the porous surface, and some aromatic substances gradually cover the heating fibre, creating a grime. Building up of that grime for a few days decreases efficiency of atomizer, or can even cause a burn down of this part.

 

       The basic rule for e-smokers is – do not overheat the atomizer. If you feel the heat on your
fingers, it means that the atomizer is very hot inside. Stop for a moment, separate the parts or use two different atomizers.

 

       Using two different atomizers or e-cigarettes is similar to philosophy of pipe smokers. They give their equipment a break and use each pipe once a day only.

 

       Remember that a typical analogue cigarette gives you about 15 inhales. If you stop using e-cig after 15 inhales, it would have a positive result on you and your device.

 

       Atomizer becomes overheated if you use it too long at time or when the level of liquid decreases ( as it is responsible for cooling), so remember to add liquid regularly.


How to care about atomizer?


       Browsing Polish and foreign internet forums, it’s possible to notice that topics concerning atomizers are the most popular ones. Almost every model has a bit different construction, works a bit differently while transporting the liquid, so there are no universal rules of maintenance. However, it’s possible to work out a few tips.

 

       Besides paying attention to proper temperature, clean this part on regular basis, which will enable you to enjoy the taste and density of vapour.

 

       What is more, at the end of the day, remove the rest of liquid from fibres. How to do it? It’s easy – separate all parts, remove atomizer from mouthpiece and blow from side of battery thread, securing it by paper towel or a tissue.

 

       Afterwards, put the atomizer in upright position on a paper, letting the liquid to soak and leave it for a night. In case of pen-type prepare a tube of paper and put it inside of atomizer (till it touches the net).

 

       Most supplier recommend that method of cleaning.

 

ATTENTION! After cleaning you mustn’t use atomizer before adding 2-3 drops of liquid.

 

       Before putting all parts together, add liquid, to make whole surface wet ( but do not overfill!). If you forget about that, dry fibres will reach very high temperature and the atomizer can burn down, and the taste will be ‘plastic’.

 

       It’s worth mentioning, that there exists a method of adding liquid directly into atomizer, called drip smoking. Put liquid on atomizer, insert the mouthpiece without refill and smoke. If you add liquid on the atomizer it would work for quite a long time. The taste is very good and the vapour quite big. However, it requires some practice and paying attention. If you notice that the taste is different, and vapour gets smaller, it means that it’s high time to add a few drops.

 

       From time to time ( frequency is not specified) it’s good the give atomizer a bath. It’s not clear in what liquid. I will discuss a few methods. Unfortunately, I have to warn you. All interference can lead to loosing guaranty. Before deep cleaning, read your manual to avoid a surprise.

 


Method no 1 – the easiest


       After separating all parts, blow air into atomizer from the side of a thread, leave for an hour in an upright position and then put into hot water with 2-3 drops of washing-up liquid. Leave for some time, stir, and then rinse with water (can be previously boiled) and finally with distilled water. Rinsing should take some time, as if it’s not performed properly, it will give a taste of washing-up liquid. At the end, leave it vertically on paper towel. IMPORTANT! Do not forget to add liquid to the net of atomizer before using.


Method no 2 – a bit more sophisticated


       After separating and blowing all parts, wash it with water (preferable distilled) and put in a test tube with rectified spirit. Shake if from time to time and leave for minimum 15 minutes (can be longer). Then it’s enough to dry and add a few drops of liquid. Important! Do not use a denaturant, salicylic alcohol or perfumes – the taste lasts and can ruin the liquid taste, so we may be forced to throw the atomizer away.


Method no 3 – more technical


       We have to invest into extra equipment – namely manual steam washer. Steam is a really good way of cleaning the net of atomizer. Be careful as you may get scalded. It’s recommended to hold the atomizer in pliers, wrapped in paper ( in order not to scratch the surface)


Method no 4 – the most sophisticated ( in my opinion)


       After separating all parts, place them in ultrasonic washer ( you have to invest), using distilled water or isopropanol. Some e-smokers really recommend this method, which in my opinion is a bit of exaggeration.

 

       By the way – when we talk about using isopropanol, I would recommend the chapter about alcohol in the further part. I remind you that isopropanol is inflammable and strongly evaporating liquid which requires a lot of care.

 

       After using isapropanol in ultrasonic washer , it’s good idea to rinse the atomizer with distilled water (or deionised). In theory isopropanol should totally evaporate, but practice is a bit different.

 

ATTENTION! I have met with really strange (not to say stupid) methods of cleaning atomizers. People’s creativity is limitless - hydrogen peroxide, gel for toilets, salicylic alcohol or even (!!!) substances for clearing pipes. Bear in mind that it can damage atomizer and cause serious health problems as you breathe in the vapour which passes through atomizer. If particles of crystallized hydroxide are left in there, it can cause serious complications. That is why I suggest using common sense – it’s better to buy a new atomizer than cure burned throat or inhalation route.

isopropanol

liquid

atomizer

Cartgridge

 

      You know quite a lot about powering of our device, now let’s concentrate on container of your ‘fuel’.

 

 

       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     

     

      Cartridge is always placed in mouthpiece. It consists of container and special kind of wadding which keeps liquid on its place.

 

       You can buy a cartridge which is already soaked, or an empty one, and then choose and add the liquid yourself. Remember to put a cartridge into e-cigarette as using empty container would be rather unpleasant.

 

      It’s worth remembering that a brand new e-cigarette has a dummy of cartridge inside and it’s up to you to put a real cartridge. It reminds me of a e-smoker who was a bit concerned about the amount of vapour. After somebody explained him the reason, we was really pleased.

 

       There are different types of cartridges, with different capacity. The smallest (mini) can hold up to 0,3 ml, which means a few inhales; the biggest (pen, e-pipe) can hold even 1 ml.

 

       Another difference is diameter and shape, so they can’t be interchangeable. The rule of thumb is to buy cartridges of the same company in order to avoid incompatibility.

 

       A new cartridge is protected by a cap, which should be removed before usage. It’s good to keep is as you may use it when filling few reserves, or as a handy plunger.

 

       If you have a look inside, you can notice that there is a wet wadding. In fact it is an absorbent core made of plastic. In most cases it is simply pushed inside the container, but sometimes it’s glued.

 

       When used, an element of atomizer ( simply speaking- wick made of porous metal) soaks liquid and high temperature triggers vapour.

 

       In place of vaporised liquid, comes another part – from further side of the wadding. This is the reason why e-smoking must be much slower than traditional - to enable good transport of liquid.

 

       After some time, dependent on many factors like construction of atomizer, temperature of heating element, diameter, capacity etc. it will be necessary to replace the whole cartridge. How do you know it’s time? It’s easy to notice that the vapour is getting smaller and taste is not so good. If you miss this moment, you can regret it. You would inhale something called ‘burned cloth’ – as e-smokers called the taste of burned plastic wadding.

 

       You should avoid such situations as it may damage refill of the cartridge. What is more, burned parts can stick to heating element and destroy it.

 

       I recommend adding liquid on regular basis, checking formulating o the refill and it’s colour. This is very important as gradually the refill is getting dirty. It’s time to decide – cleaning the old one or get a new one.

 

       It is good idea to use a paper clip while adding liquid – for venting reasons. After adding a few drops, put the ending of paper clip between refill and side of the container, and push to remove air bubbles from wadding. Next, we add a bit more of liquid and repeat removing air till whole refill gets saturated. How to Refill Your catridge M7 M401 ....  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9PVrsCC5-0

 

 

 


      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     

      Another way is to use a syringe with needle. The end of needle should touch the bottom of refill, so we will be able to get rid of air inside.

 
Regenerating the refill of cartridge


       After certain period, the cartridge would need some service. Adding liquid, pushing etc. cause deformation of its structure. Transport of liquid deteriorates, what can result in worse vaporising. Moreover, less volatile substances can sediment on wedding and it starts darkening.

 

       In this case, there are three alternatives – exchange cartridge, clean wadding or exchange the refill.

 

       If someone wants to save rests of liquid, use tweezers and syringe, but I am rather doubtful about it. Remove refill from cartridge (by tweezers) , place it inside a syringe and push the liquid into a small container.

 

       Syringes of 2 ml capacity would be the best. The liquid may be worse than a brand new one, but from chemical point of view, there are no contraindications ( unless the cartridge was old). After pushing out the liquid, you may try to wash the refill and use it again.

 

       Exchanging of cartridge doesn’t require further explanation. Remember, that you mustn’t leave any extra parts inside the device. Check if the wadding is wet and if it is properly placed.

 

       If the wadding looks dirty (gets brown), or the structure doesn’t look good, you can ‘wash’ it. Remove the refill from cartridge, using tweezers or paper clip. Be delicate and do not tear the wadding, place it in lukewarm water, and push it a few times to remove dirt. Take it away from the water and dry on paper towel. It’s good to wash few refills simultaneously. Proper drying is not essential as liquid contains water as well.

 

       From time to time, clean mouthpiece as well, as it may be covered by liquid or some kind of dust. It can be easily cleaned by paper towel or cotton buds.


Exchanging refill in cartridge

 
       Cartridge is a durable part but remember that it won’t last forever. Refill can be easily replaced. The most similar material appears to be wadding used in aquarium filter, which is rather inexpensive. I would recommend Filtus brand ( MHK company).

 

       Before using, it’s good to rinse it in boiling water to get rid of substances that can change taste of e-cig. After rinsing, remove water by paper towel.

 

       Form a shape, a bit bigger than the inside of our cartridge, put it inside and cut the needless part. It’s important to put the fibres along the cartridge, not across.

 

       It will make the wadding flexible, which is a key factor. Wick of atomizer must touch wadding, otherwise liquid won’t be properly transported to heater.

 


      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      Now, you may fill the container with liquid. As there is a lot of air, adding drops should be a slow process, as described before. Remember than an excess is not welcome, as it would get into your mouth. Finish the regeneration process by checking the container and cleaning the surface by paper towel. Remember to clean mouthpiece, as described in previous chapter.
After filling with liquid, place it properly in mouthpiece, and put all parts together. If atomizer was cleaned as well, remember to add liquid to the heater.

regenerating

e-cigarette

chapter7

air

regenerating

exchanging

liquid

refill

vapour

temperature

Cartomizer


       Recently, two-part e-cigarettes ( accumulator and cartomizer- atomizer with cartridge) are getting more and more popular.

 

       Why are they gaining popularity? It’s easy – they are user-friendly. Usually atomizer is the most problematic part. Cartomizer is much simpler and cheaper, so if it breaks, you simply buy a new one. Theoretically, cartomizers are disposable parts, but clever e-smokers have found a way to regenerate it.

 

       If you are careful while using it, you can enjoy it for many weeks. If you feel that your device is producing less vapour, and taste becomes ‘plastic’ you can start regenerating it.

 

 


      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      You need a paper clip, bend its ending (90 degrees) and put it inside as a lever, opening the cap placed at the end of cartomizer ( opposite a metal thread). The first time requires some strength, but after a while you will succeed. Usually, there is some liquid on the cap, so clean it with paper towel.

 

       Next step is to remove silicone seal, placed deeper inside ( by paper clip). Be careful as you may damage heater or wadding.

 


      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       Clean the cap and silicone seal by paper towel, or lukewarm water (not hot!) when parts are really dirty and leave to dry.

 

       Check the inside of cartomizer. If wadding is really dirty or is not even around heater, it can mean excessive drying and overheating of cartomizer. Usually, this is the end of its life, but it’s good to leave a cap and silicone seal.

 

       If cartomizer looks good, we can start adding liquid. First of all, you have to secure a hole, located next to thread. We use a silicon pin, which was there when the device was brand new. After pushing it inside, put a silicone cap and tighten.

 

       Put cartomizer upside down and slowly add liquid, paying attention to equal distribution.
Usually, 20 drops is the limit and it’s not recommended to put more.

 

       After filling put silicone seal and a cap and leave it for a moment to ensure that liquid is equally distributed inside the wadding. It’s good to close it with a silicone cap on the mouthpiece ending and place it in vertical position (threat at the bottom).

 

 

 
      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      A different method, requiring more effort, but giving better results is using a syringe. You will need a small (1-2 ml) syringe and a medium size needle ( I use ‘green’ needles – 8-40), available by chemist’s. I do not recommend using stuff previously used for medical purposes. Besides, you have to stay focused, as accidental injection of liquid in your body may be harmful and requiring an appointment by doctor.

 

       First of all, close the bottom part of cartomizer to prevent leaking out of liquid. Place a needle on syringe and slowly fill with liquid. Do not take more than 0,8 ml. Place it all together in vertical position, with needle at the top and remove air. Push a plunger of syringe till first drop of liquid gets out by needle.

 

       Then, put the syringe upside down, place the syringe between side of cartomizer and wadding and start filling. It’s good to inject liquid into a few places to fill the whole wadding, to ensure equal distribution. Take the syringe out and close cartomizer by silicone seal and cap. You may leave it for a moment but it’s not essential.

 

       Afterwards, rinse the syringe and needle with warm water and leave to dry ( out of reach of children and animals). You may use the same set many times.

 

       There exists a method of adding liquid into close cartomizer by mouthpiece) but I’m not sure if it’s a good technique. If we don’t want to open cartomizer, I will present an easier technique.


Filling cartomizer – version for the lazy ones


       Above mentioned techniques are appropriate and give good results. There exists a version for lazy ones – comfortable, fast and effective.

 

       In this case we don’t need any extra equipment. Take cartomizer, hold it (with thread at the top) by one hand and container (upside down) with liquid by the other one, trying to keep the ending very close to hole.

 

       Gently pushing, add a few drops and let them go down. It’s important to let separate drops get inside before adding more. From my experience I can tell that it’s good to hold cartomizer in tilted position ( 10-15 grades from vertical). After getting some experience, you can twist cartomizer simultaneously to ensure equal distribution of liquid.

 

 


      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     

      After finishing, check surface around the hole and remove any spare liquid by paper towel or tissue.

 

       A good tip is to have a break after adding 5-6 drops. Take cartomizer, hold in vertical position and energetically roll in both directions. This activity can be repeated after another 5 drops and after filling to the top. Using this method, do not add much liquid – 15 drops will be enough. You don’t need to wait – screw the accumulator and enjoy e-smoking. The entire process lasts no more than half a minute and it’s very effective but should be used only with new cartomizer with fresh wadding.

 

Regeneration of cartomizer


       As I wrote, catomizers are disposable products, so after a few filling it’s time to regenerate them. From experience, it should be done once a week.

 

       There are many techniques, very easy and more sophisticated ones. I tend to use the easiest – the results are satisfactory and I regenerate in bulk – 3 or 4 together.


Method nr 1


       Take cap and silicone seal out of cartomizer and place them in water with washing-up liquid.

 

       Use pliers to save your hands, hold the cartomizer firmly and put one drop of washing-up liquid inside. Hot water and washing-up liquid are very effective in removing dirt. For 3-4 cartomizers you will need about 1 litre of hot water.

 

       After cleaning, leave cartomizer on paper towel to dry for about 2 days. Do not try to quicken the process by pushing refill in container as it gets useless ( torn structures of fibres).


Method nr 2


       First of all, take cap and silicone seal out of cartomizer. Check quality of wadding and place it inside ultrasonic washer, filled with water or isopropanol. After a few minutes, leave it to dry. If you use isopropanol, rinse it with distilled water. Drying should take at least 2 days. The disadvantage is that during such washing, a paper cartomizer’s cover is removed , which can make it look not attractive (no influence on functionality)

chapter8

syringe

Liquids for e-smokers


       I must admit that this chapter has a special value for me, as I had to control myself while writing his. This is a kind of professional bias. Liquids used in e-cigarettes is pure chemistry. Don’t worry – it won’t be a lecture on this subject. Second, chemical substances used it this case are quite common in different products

     

Taste and aromatic ingredients of liquid


       If you have a look on liquids used in e-cigarettes, you can notice a whole list of very complicated names. You probably worry why and if they are harmful.

 

       It’s hard to answer the second question. Bear in mind that during smoking of traditional cigarettes, you breathe in 4 000 (!) very dangerous substances, which is proved.

 

       Most substances used in e-cigs have got a certificate , so can be used in food industry, and they are not carcinogen.

 

       Let’s come back to the topic of purpose of those acetyl methyl- something. Well, if there was no purpose of adding them, producers wouldn’t bother about mixing them.

 

       I don’t want to consider chemistry and physiology of taste – for many years synthetic aromas have been used in food industry as they are cheaper and more homogeneous.

 

        Chemical compound or blend can imitate almost every taste or smell ( e.g. esters). Ethyl butyrate is similar to pineapple, 2-acetyl pyridine to fresh bread.

 

       No wonder that Chinese producers offer liquids in hundreds of types –from anise to cranberries.

 

       If you care about your health, avoid very fragrant liquids. However, after quitting smoking, you will probably need some kind of ‘kick’ – nicotine. It’s very important topic – the whole next topic focuses on it.

     

Nicotine


       Apart from so-called ‘zeroes’ –liquids without nicotine, it is an ingredient of all liquids. It should be clearly stated on package – not only a notice ‘low’ or ‘medium’, which is not related to numbers like 6 mg or 24 mg. There is no universal classification, so a ‘medium’ bottle can contain 11mg/ml or 16 mg/ml which makes a big difference.


       If we care about what we smoke, we should know the exact concentration. Information on bottles can be misleading. What does it mean ‘ 16 mg’? Producer knows that it means 16 mg/ 1 ml, but for an average user it may not be clear.

 

       I met people who claimed that the number on label concerns the whole bottle of liquid – IT IS
NOT TRUE. The number concerns concentration – amount of nicotine in 1 ml of liquid.

 

       How to assess it? The first method is not exact, but lets you follow the absorption.

 

       We can assume that 1 ml is about 20 drops. Usually, there are more, but let’s leave a margin. If we use 35 drops, it means that we absorbed 35/20 = 1,75 ml of liquid. If we use liquid with concentration 24 mg, our organism got 1,75*24=42 ml of alkaloid. Quite a lot, as the fatal amount is about 60 mg. Certainly, nicotine gets quickly decomposed and e-cig is smoked through the day, so it doesn’t make a big difference for an addict.

 

       The second method is based on average results. Multiply average amount of daily intake by concentration.

 

       Those calculations are very useful, when reducing amount of poisonous substance (let’s call it by name!). As it is good to know your enemy, I recommend the further part of this book.

 

       Ex-smokers of analogue cigarettes often ask about liquids and it’s relation to traditional types: strong, light, superlight. I have seen many different tables and charts, but the reality is that every person reacts differently. There is only one option – to try. In a set, you would probably get liquids with different concentration. Test and choose the best one, starting from the weakest one.

 

       Don’t panic if you need liquid 24mg/ml, as you will go down quite quickly. I started with 24 mg/ml, soon switched to 15-18 mg/ml, now I use 12 mg/ml and probably I will go down.

 

       To sum up – all recommendations and charts should be treated with tongue in cheek, your reactions are the best measure.

     

DIY – how to mix something
on your own


       Usually after certain time we start to wonder how to improve our device. Some people may experiment with new charging methods, others tend to experiment with liquids.

 

       There are a few dozens of flavours, including very exotic ones. It’s like eating in a restaurant and the need to experiment in your own kitchen.

 

       A few tips – it’s safe to experiment but follow a few rules. Sometimes results are great –delicious taste and a lot of vapour.

 

       What is important, neither author or publisher bear responsibility for any damages or problems resulting from tips included in this book. You are an adult and you are entirely responsible for your actions. I remind, that normally sellers do not accept experiments ( in terms of guaranty).

 

       Bear in minds, that sometimes you will face failure, which is connected with costs but ‘no risk, no fun’.

 

       When we talk about risk – all experiments should be safe and conscious. Start with simple methods, and carry on with more sophisticated ones. Before inhaling, check your liquid. It shouldn’t be stratified, with no separate parts inside (fluff, crystals). If something like this it visible, do not risk.

 

       I need to add that using any substances from unknown origin is forbidden. Using glycol or glycerine from questionable source, we risk our health or even life.

 

       I discourage such experiments using nicotine in pure form, coming from illegal source. Why? Additional information can be found in chapter concerning chemical and toxic influence of nicotine.

      

More vapour!

 

       One of the most common question posted on forums is how to get bigger amount of vapour. Of course, the quality depends on liquid, type of e-cigarette, level of battery etc. Take liquid as the only factor – you get more vapour with bigger content of glycerine.

 

       How to get it? The easiest way is to buy glycerine by chemist’s. A bottle of 30 gram of
glycerine is quite cheap and it’s enough for many experiments. In fact it’s a solution of 86% glycerine and 14% of water.

 

       If you have glycerine and favourite liquid, start mixing. Take into account that mixing decreases concentration of nicotine and aroma, in other words –changes taste.

 

       Second important thing is that many atomizers don’t like high concentration of glycerine. If you exaggerate, you may not get more vapour. Besides, you will have to clean atomizer. Reasonable content of glycerine shouldn’t be higher than 20-25%. However, 10% increase is usually noticeable. Modern atomizers are less sensitive to glycerine – I know people who use concentration of 50 % glycerine.

 

       For the beginning, I recommend mixing small amounts. How to do it? The easiest way is to add both components directly into cartridge or atomizer. If you know that your refill holds 10 drops, and you want to get a 40% concentration, add 4 drops of liquid, 2 drops of glycerine and another 4 drops of liquid. Close it and leave for about one hour, to ensure equal distribution.

 

       Of course you can change the amount of drops, but do not change the order as chances of mixing are rather small and it can result in problems with vapour.

 

       Using the same method, you can mix different tastes. You should be sensible (and lucky a bit), as many combinations of tastes are surprising in a negative way. A safe mixture, is menthol with classic liquid or (my favourite) menthol with chocolate. If you mix different tastes, do not use more than 20 % of any components. However, proportions are optional.

 

        You can produce a bigger amount of liquid, if you finally find your favourite taste. It’s good idea to keep empty bottles, and measure ingredients by a syringe, as it requires less effort than counting drops. Some smokers recommend mixing liquids in an open container, and stirring (of course by paper clip!). In my opinion it’s not rights, as oxygen causes oxidation of nicotine. I carefully close the bottle and shake it for about few seconds- the rest is diffusion.

 

       Alternatively, you can mix three components by the same method- for example camel-menthol-glycerine. Remember that you shouldn’t use glycerine as the first – is denser is it will mix slower.

    

Mixing – level nr 2

 

        Most e-smokers use ready liquids, add glycerine or mix 2-3 liquids. However, I do notice more and more experiments, so I would like to focus on that. I won’t describe details but only the most important issues, such as safety.

 

       I am not going to describe whole process of creating, starting from pure nicotine, glycol etc. This is really difficult, and most of you don’t have a professional laboratory and specialized knowledge. You risk your life. That is all in this topic.

 

Well, what can you do?

 

       When you get bored with ready liquids, you can start experimenting with your own. You need a tasteless liquid ( solution of nicotine in glycol or in a mixture). It’s not easily available, but you can find it on the market. One technical tip – those liquids have high concentration (up to 54mg/ml). It means that they shouldn’t be used without diluting, so bear that in mind in the process of composing.

 

       For purposes of taste, you will need special aromas. I don’t recommend common aromas – such as cake flavouring. The taste is great but it’s not suitable for your purpose. It’s not about your health, but about reaction of e-cigarette on vegetable oil.

 

       I would recommend special aromas for e-smokers, available in e-shops.
       Aromas are usually sold in small bottles, as you use only a small amount. One more thing – adding aroma is like adding sugar into tea – start with small amount, and gradually add more if needed.

 

       How much is enough? Difficult question. It depends on two conditions – producer and type of aroma. I would start with 2 drops for 5 ml of liquid. How to do it in practice? Place 5 ml of liquid in a clean container, add 1 drop of aroma ( usually bottles of aroma have a dropper, if not buy one by chemist’s) and close it carefully. Leave it for about half an hour.

 

       Afterwards, place the liquid in refill and taste it. If it’s too weak, add another drop and repeat the whole procedure. It happens that taste gets uniform after few days – that is the fortune of experimenters.

 

E-smokers and health

 

       Content of traditional cigarette smoke includes tar, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, phenol, cresol, carbon monoxide, hydrogen cyanide, nitrosamines and thousands of different substances, many of which are carcinogenic. Switching to e-cigarettes, you can simply forget about them.

 

       Vapour consists of few substances, mainly propylene glycol. Wait a sec... glycol? It’s used for car radiators, with a notice ‘poison’!

 

       Take it easy – it is not the same glycol. The one for radiators is poisonous, but it’s ethylene glycol. In case of e-cigarettes we deal with propylene glycol, which is not harmful for people ( chapter about glycol and glycerine).

 

       Liquid used for cartridges usually consists of nicotine, which is considered addictive, but it is not proved that this substance is carcinogen. The rest of substances used as aromas, are common ingredient of food aromas.

 

       Does it mean that e-cigarettes are absolutely harmless? Unfortunately, we have no proof. There are to research to support this theory. On the other hand, there are thousands of research which prove that traditional cigarettes are very unhealthy. E-cigs should be treated as an alternative to analogue smoking. Nobody who is not addicted should try them, as they are not toys.

 

       Can e-smoking be harmful? If we add too much nicotine, it can. It doesn’t need further explanations. Base (glycol/glycerine) can make your mouth dry, but the solution is easy – drink more. Some people may be allergic to propylene glycol, so if you notice rash, redness, itching skin stop e-smoking and consult it with your doctor. It is common that changing liquid with a different base (glycerine is the most dangerous) solves the problem. Remember, that seller should always know that is the content and base of liquid, so it’s good to ask

glycol

e-cigarette

Some practical chemistry for e-smokers

 

Let’s start from easiest part – H2O – water

 

Water of course is not used as liquid in e-cigarette, but it’s usually used for washing and regenerating atomizers, cartridges, cartomizers, so let’s focus on it.

 

On everyday basis, you can use current water from the tap. In fact it contains a variety of substances, but it won’t damage any parts. It’s good to get a purified water- it can used for final rinsing. There are many types of purified water on the market, with only marketing difference for e-smokers. On petrol stations or supermarkets you can get distilled or deionised water, which are very similar. Rinsing with such water, won’t leave any sediment on parts of e-cigarette, which has an influence on efficiency.

 

We can also use boiled water, with similar properties.

     

e-cigarette

What should be known about nicotine?


Most of us use liquids which contain nicotine. Usually the concentration varies from 6 to 36 mg/ml ( there are some 54 mg/ml liquids for diluting). If we want to get a percentage concentration, we get 0,6 -3,6 % (54mg/ml=5,4%).

Why this knowledge is so important? It’s easy – this compound is a really strong poison. Fatal dose is about 60 mg (for an adult), so remember that each 10ml bottle contains fatal amount.

 

Nicotine (pure) is more toxic than arsenic, or widely known hydrogen cyanide.

 

When dealing with liquids stay focused and be careful. Keep them is a safe place, out of reach of random people. Most of liquids have sweet taste, some smell nicely so can be found attractive by children (and pets).

All activities (adding drops, stirring, mixing etc.) should be carried out with no rush, making sure that liquid doesn’t get on your skin as nicotine is easily absorbed ( one drop of 24 mg/ml liquid contains 1 mg of pure nicotine).

In case of contact with skin or eyes, rinse it with water and soap. If there are problems with seeing or redness, contact a doctor.

Remember that nicotine is sensitive to two factors – oxygen and light, that is why liquids should be carefully closed and protected against light. There is no need to keep them in fridge, or freezer (I have heard of such ideas!). It’s enough to place them in a box, out of reach of children.

 

Influence of nicotine in case of overdosing

 

Common consequences involve tiredness, lack of energy, abundance of thoughts, vomiting, diarrhoea. More excessive intake can cause light-headedness vision, hallucinations. Extreme situations result in unconsciousness, convulsions, and finally death.

If you suffer from any of abovementioned disorders, immediately contact a doctor.

CAUTION! If you plan to use e –cigarette during nicotine replacement therapy (plasters, chewing gum etc. with nicotine), consult it with your doctor. Mixing nicotine from plasters and chewing gums with liquids can have serious consequences for your health!

Certainly, if your liquid doesn’t contain nicotine, you don’t need to worry. In this case nicotine from plaster or chewing gum satisfies physical hunger, will e-smoking satisfies behavioural reflex.

 

A few warnings for self-taught experimenters

 

I have found posts on forums, written by people who want to experiment with creating liquids from the very beginning (starting with nicotine, glycol, aromas etc.). My personal advice, as a person who has spent 30 years in a laboratory with highly toxic compounds, is: if you aren’t 100% confident about your skills and you don’t have access to a professional laboratory equipped with
working lift, and equipment in case of spilling nicotine, DON’T DO IT!

You can harm yourself and expose other people to poisoning or even death. Don’t risk.

A bottle with 100 ml of nicotine can kill a thousand of people, but it is sufficient for only 2 litres of base liquid with concentration 50 mg/ml.

Nicotine marked T+ (highly poisonous) is not sold to every person. You can get it from illegal source , but it is related to purity of compound, method of storing and quality. Remember that you deal with a substance that gets into human body.

I will remind one more time – pure nicotine is more dangerous than arsenic and potassium cyanide. Nicotine is a liquid and vapours in room temperature, which makes it vent more dangerous.

 

Some more information for the curious ones

 

From chemical point of view, nicotine is an alkaloid (similar to theobromine and caffeine present in tea and coffee). Chemical features of it has influence on affecting human bodies. Nicotine gets inside by two methods: by lungs ( to blood) or by mucosa (to bloods as well). Additionally, it is easily absorbed by skin.

Interestingly, its effect is immediate. After a few seconds nicotine is present in brain blood vessels. Time when amount of substances decreases by about 50 % in brain lasts about one hour, in the whole body about two hours. There is no effect of cumulating.

Process of decomposing (into conityne, nicotine n-oxide and others) is carried out in a liver. This process is slowed down by menthol , so bear that in mind when mixing liquids.

 

Influence on neural system

 

Nicotine is an interesting substance as it may work as a stimulant and sedative. In first phase it triggers production of epinephrine ( adrenaline), which is stimulating and causes increase in heart rate, blood pressure and glucose levels. It is also a pain killer as it increases concentration of beta-endorphin ( so-called happiness hormone).

Technical information about nicotine

Name by IUPAC nomenclature:
3-[2-(N- methylpyrrolidin)pyridine
Classification by UE: T+, N (highly toxic, dangerous for environment)
R: 25,27,51/53S:36/37-45-61

 

About glycols and glycerine

 

There are so many myths about glycols that I have to explain some issues, as compound from this group is the most common base in liquids for e-cigarettes.

What is important- there are many types of glycols, with a commonly known ethylene glycol which is the only one poisonous one.

The name comes from Greek word – ‘glykis’ –sweet, as glycols are sweet. The name ‘glycerine’ has similar origin.

 

Propylene glycol (PG)

 

(formally also called 1,2-propanediol or propane-1,2-diol)

Used in cosmetics, food – as an extra for E1520, pharmaceutical products ( so-called menstruum for injecting drugs and inhaled drugs), in entertainment industry (smoke in movies, theatre, disco).

Glycol is low toxic, it get’s quickly processed into milk acid ( the same as in working muscles). Metabolism of propylene glycol is connected to human cycle of citric acid (Krebs cycle). Final metabolites are excreted in the urine.

According to American FDA (Food and Drug Administration) propylene glycol is classified as GRAAS ( Generally Recognized As Safe) and approved for use in food and pharmacy.

If you are going to mix liquids on your own, don’t buy substances in suspicious places. Go to chemical store and buy approved brands, with original labels.

Some people may be allergic to propylene glycol. In this case, use a different base e.g. polyethylene glycol or glycerine

 

Polyethylene glycol

 

Also known as macrogol 400

In fact this is not a separate chemical compound, but a blend of polymers identified by so-called average molecular weight ( the most common is 400).

It is used in liquids together with propylene glycol, as polyethylene glycol has high viscidity.

It is used in medicine as a cure for constipation, it doesn’t get absorbed. It can be used by children, due to the fact that it is non-toxic. It is also used as a base for ointments – e.g. antibiotics.

Where can you get it? I have found a few sources – e-shops. Be careful – seller should always supply pure products, approved by chemical organisations.

 

Glycerin

 

Also called glycerol, propane- 1,2,3 –triol) It is trihydric alcohol commonly used in food and pharmaceutical industry, which is added liquids to get a bigger vapour. Be careful, as atomizers may be damaged.

It is connected to high density, viscosity, poor thermal conductivity of glycerine.

A few words about history of glycerine. We often hear about vegetable glycerine and synthetic glycerine. Vegetable glycerine is more common, but it is only the by-product of hydrolysis of vegetable fats. If we add solution of sodium hydroxide to a vegetable fat and heat for a moment, we get two products – soap and glycerine.

A ‘real’ vegetable glycerine is really uncommon, even if a producer claims that he uses it. If he used it, it would cost hundreds of dollars for 1 ml.

The best place to buy glycerine is chemist’s – it will be clean and cheap.

And for the end – poisonous substances

 

Ethylene glycol – ATTENTION- POISON!

 

Used mainly for production of polyester resins and for liquids for car radiators. It looks very similar to propylene glycol, so be careful. Don’t use it for preparing or diluting liquids.

 

Isopropanol (isopropyl alcohol)

 

Some e-smokers use it for cleaning, but its effectiveness is not proved. It dissolves the residue on heater , but leaves unpleasant taste, so remember to rinse atomizer with water.

 

It is often used for cleaning electrical parts, which is OK, but in case of e-cigarettes it can lead to inhaling impurity.

 

It’s always good to buy products in chemical stores, paying attention if products have labels of chemical organization, that fulfil pharmaceutical standards ( opposed to those aimed at electronic goods) and don’t contain heavy metals or benzene.

 

Things you mustn’t forget

 

Isopropanol is flammable , so keep away with sources of fire and out of reach of children. Don’t store it for too long, as oxygen may trigger an explosion.

 

Some extra information

 

According to EU standards, isopropanol is marked with letter F (flammable) and Xn (harmful)     

E-smoker glossary

 

Analogue: a common term used to describe an ordinary cigarette in order to differentiate it from e-cigarettes

 

Atomiser: a part of an e-cigarette in which vapour is formed

 

Battery: a common, however formally incorrect, term used to describe the e-cigarette accumulator

 

Cap: silicone protection of cartomiser against drying up

 

Cartomiser: a component of a two-part e-cigarette. The word comes from two other words: cartridge and atomizer

 

Clip: an essential tool for an e-cigarettes smoker that is used to service the cartridge, dismantle the cartomiser and other activities

 

Cloth: a common expression used to describe the unpleasant taste of e-smoke which is a result of dry refill

 

Clouding: a different name for e-cigarettes smoking

 

Cut-off: automatic atomizer power cut off by the microprocessor in order to protect the heater against overheating

 

Drip smoking (dropping): e-cigarettes smoking technique of dropping the liquid directly onto the heater and the atomizer net

 

Heater: the element of an atomizer that is responsible for heating the liquid

 

Hybrid smoker: an informal expression, a person who smokes both e-cigarettes and analogue cigarettes

 

Inawera: Polish manufacturer and importer of fragrances for e-cigarettes

 

Liquid: liquid used in an e-cigarette

 

Manual: a type of a battery with a manual switch

 

Net: a component of an atomizer

 

Pen: a type of e-cigarettes, whose name is due to its shape and length

 

Pin: the stopper made of silicone that protects the cartomiser in the thread area

 

Power: informal term used to describe the concentration of nicotine in the liquid

 

Refill: cartridge part that includes wadding and liquid

 

Screwdriver: a type of e-cigarettes, whose name is due to its specific shape

 

Stick: a type of e-cigarettes, whose name is due to its shape

 

Throat hit: a strong effect of analogue cigarettes on throat and lungs that is widely known among the analogue cigarettes smokers

 

Under-pressure battery: a type of an automatic battery which has under pressure sensor

 

USB Pass (Passthrough): accumulator substitute that allows using an e-cigarette that is connected to USB port, e.g. in a computer

 

Vaping: a less popular name for e-smoking

 

Wadding: cartridge part that is soaked with liquid

 

Wire smoking: e-cigarettes smoking when an e-cigarette is charged by USB Passthrough

hybrid

atomiser

manual

heater

glossary

cap