Crash Course in Vaping
Disclaimer: The recommendations and information provided here are gathered from my personal experiences with vaping. I am not a professional, scientist, doctor, or all-knowing. You choose to read and use this information of your own accord, and agree to not hold myself, Shoe Queen, responsible for your decisions and actions regarding this information. Also, I own the images contained within this document. These images are provided in this free document to educate new users. If you wish to use an image for anything other than personal blogging and sharing pro e-Cigarette purposes you must contact me for permission.
I whole-heatedly support you sharing this info on to others.
There are numerous support groups on Facebook – it has become the 2nd home for many vapers that have moved on from ECF (http://www.e-cigarette-forum.com) and with so many different groups you should be able to find a local or state group of your own! Connecting with vapers is possibly the best thing you can do if you are serious about using e-Cigarettes. The one thing I will mention about joining ECF or ANY forum is make sure to read their Code of Conduct. Use good judgment and be polite – after all, you are asking for their help.
You Really Should Read This
Before we get into the next bit, I want to make sure I state this:
DO NOT ORDER A FREE TRIAL KIT! There is no such thing as a free lunch or a “free” e-Cigarette. Free trials are offered by the companies with the worst reputations. They send you a “free e-Cigarette kit” and then charge your credit card $100+ each month. The kit they send you is worth maybe $15.00, but you’ll continued to get hosed by these companies who will claim that you agreed to a Membership in their “e-Cigarette club”, and then proceed to charge your credit card every month. SO, DON’T DO IT!
On the same note: DO NOT PURCHASE AN e-CIGARETTE FROM A MALL KIOSK! With tremendously inflated prices for kits that I wouldn’t even sell to my enemies, these Mall Sellers are going to try and convince you a single carto or cartridge is equatable to a carton of cigarettes (complete lie), and then proceed to sell you a kit for $150.00, that in reality is only worth $10.00. They are ripping people off and selling you a system that is doomed to fail.
New to e-Cigarettes?
If you have never tried an e-Cigarette, and you really need to find out if this is even in the realm of possibility of working for you – and I even hesitate to recommend this – Pick up a disposable from your local Walgreen’s, Walmart, or Tobacco Seller. Pay no more than $8.00-$15.00. If you must, try an Njoy, Blu, or other disposable e-Cigarette.
Why did I hesitate to recommend these? Because, point blank, they suck. This is not what Vaping is. The disposables are under powered, under juiced, and frequently a complete waste of money. You can’t recharge the battery, and often can’t add more eJuice to the cart they sealed on it. If I had started with one of these, I would still be smoking a pack a day of traditional cigarettes. Add to the fact that most of the eJuice used in these is, well, just icky, you can’t get a real feel for what Vaping is.
With those disclaimers above – you have been fairly warned. The whole point of creating this document was to help you successfully start Vaping and save money while doing it. If you disregard what I shared above, then most likely you will…
- Waste a lot of money.
- Been very unsatisfied with vaping.
- Curse the whole vaping movement.
But to learn how to avoid all of that heartache, read on!
Now, after I bored with the lexicon of terms that us Vapin’ geeks use, your probably wondering “Why the hell didn’t she just send me the link for where to buy these damn things?”
Ah, young padawan, you have much to learn. “Strong in the Force, Vaping is. Beware the Dark Side with it’s Power of Analogs!”
Okay, one more definition:
Analogs: That thing your probably sucking on right now is an analog. Well, I assuming that’s what your sucking on… And I’ll stop any further commentary right there. 😉
Analogs = regular traditional cigarettes. Why are they called analogs? Probably some geek boy thought he was clever, and the term stuck.
Regardless, the method to my madness here is to get you to understand that there are some choices you need to make before entering the wild world of vaping. It’s not all hot red-heads and fast cars, rock n’ roll and devil may care attitude!
Nope, this is the part that sucks….
Four Things That You Need To Figure Out Before You Purchase
What type of smoker are you and how heavily do you smoke?
If you go through less than a pack a day, that would be light to moderate.
More than a pack a day, that would be heavy. Do you chain-smoke, or just grab a smoke when you need to? If you are a chain smoker, then you will need an eGo type unit or larger. If you smoke occasionally, then a 510 mini will probably work for you.
What is your budget?
An initial kit can run from $10.00 to $200.00. The $10.00 kit will be bound to disappoint. The $200 + kit may be so advanced you’ll give up. A medium range kit, $50 – $75 should be the starting point for most folks. Plus, you have to keep in mind there is more here than meets the eye when it comes to getting started in Vaping. The little extras add up fast, but after buying your initial set up the cost of Vaping every month can be as little as $30.00 to $60.00.
Can you accept that NOTHING will ever taste exactly like a cigarette?
This is the biggest stumbling block, I think, when it comes to making the switch between analogs and Vaping. Oh, you may come close, but it will never be a cigarette. I was fortunate that I read and researched this stuff, because I was aware that this was the case. I had a revelation after I got my first kit, and first order of juice… I discovered I don’t really care about the Tobacco flavor. True, I was a menthol smoker, but I discovered that there are things a hell of a lot tastier than tobacco. I vape fruity stuff, vanilla stuff or really minty stuff. Stuff I like a lot better…like Chocolate Hazelnut. Mmmmm!
Can you accept that this is not as easy as opening a pack of smokes?
Can you accept that this is not as convenient as driving to the gas station and picking up a fresh pack? It’s the honest truth, as harsh as it is. If I had gotten into this thinking “this will be simpler”, I would have shot myself in the first week of Vaping, and been found in a pile of half empty eJuice bottles and used cartos.
This whole Vaping thing is not without bumps in the road. BUT, if you can put up with some minor inconveniences, and a few bumps in the road, you will find yourself saving a lot of cash, and hopefully no longer touching traditional cigarettes.
To successful give up analogs you need to approach this with the following thought: There is a wide range of flavors, and I’m going to have to figure out what I like. Vaping will get my body the nicotine it’s craving, and while it might not be exactly like a cigarette, it’s a hell of a lot better, and in many cases a lot tastier! And yeah, it’s not as easy as lighting up my normals Ultra Super Mentholated 100s King cigarettes, but it will get me off those things.
So after you have wrestled with these soul searching questions and concluded that you want to give vaping a try, the very first thing you will need to figure out is…
What Type Of PV Do I Want?
There are numerous manufactures and different setups. It’s mind boggling. I lucked out and found what may be the greatest resource on Vaping: www.e-cigarette-forum.com. This is where I asked all my questions and began to learn what I needed to. You, your lucky, you found this guide right here!
There are myriad of PVs available, but I am only going to cover 2. These 2 are reliable and trusted, both of them are by Joyetech (or Joye), and are pretty much what the industry standard is.
Let’s take a look at these two types of eCigarettes…
JoyeTech (or Joye) 510 kit
Pros: There cute, easy to carry, and feel like a traditional cigarette.
Cons: Dreadfully short battery life. You will definitely need to have a PCC (Personal Charging Case), multiple batteries, and multiple cartridges/juice or Cartos to get through the day if you are a moderate to heavy smoke. The battery charge on a mini is good for about 1-2 hours of moderate vaping, hence the need for multiple batteries and possibly a PCC.
These kits are available in “Manual” (has a button), and “Automatic” (does not have a button, instead has an internal electronic switch that senses when you draw on the e-Cig, and automatically turns the atomizer “on”) While Automatics are nice, be warned – if your carto floods (you added too much juice) it can and will short circuit the switch and kill the battery.
If you want the feel of a traditional cigarette, I recommend going with a Joye 510.
Why? Because eventually you are going to get fed up with a little mini e-Cigarette, and this way when you move up to a larger PV, all of your stuff will be compatible.
There are a number of great vendors to buys a kit like this from, and they all run sales, so I recommend checking out their Facebook pages to see if they have any discounts/coupon codes. You can always read reviews on www.e-cigarette-forum.com to learn about most vendors, otherwise make sure to check out their Facebook pages and learn more about them before you place an order with some unknown vendor.
Another great resource to find vendor sales is:https://www.facebook.com/groups/vapedeals/
A starter 510 kit should price out between $30.00 – $45.00, give or take a few dollars. If you pay significantly more than this you are getting hosed. Most importantly shop around!
BUT I would recommend you go with…
Pros: Long life batteries 6 to 12 hours, dependent what kind of kit you purchase. Most starter kits come with 650mah eGo batteries, but some Vendors give you the option to upgrade to a larger battery. Easy to find parts and supplies.
Cons: Doesn’t look like a cigarette. End doesn’t light up.
Again there are many great vendors to buys a kit like this from, and they all run sales, so checking out their Facebook pages. You can always read reviews on www.e-cigarette-forum.com to learn about most vendors, otherwise make sure to check out their Facebook pages and learn more about them before you place an order with some unknown vendor.
A starter eGo kit should price out between $45.00 – $60.00, give or take a few dollars. If you pay significantly more than this you are getting hosed, or are buying a kit that is significantly more than a standard eGo kit. Make sure you are buying they type of kit that you want. eGo kits in particular come in a number of different styles and options, such as an eGo-T, eGo-C, eGo Twist, eGo Spinner, etc. If one of the other types of kits interests you, then go do a Google search to learn more about them. Most importantly shop around!
What Else Do You Need To Order?
You can use your new kit with the provided Atomizer and Cartridges… However, you will most likely find it the experience lacking, and tire quickly of having to add eJuice to the Cartridge. Not to mention, those Cartridges are usually filled with some eJuice that isn’t too very tasty.
Instead, read on to find what else you will want to pick up.
Cartomizers, Clearomizers, Vivi Nova Tank or ProTank?
The previous email discussed all of these, and it is up to you to decide what you want to try… or get some of each.
Cartomizers are pretty simple, and straightforward. If you are confused about what to get right now, opt to try Cartomizers.
You should be able to pick up Cartomizers from where you order you kit from. All you need to remember is this…
Boge 510 Standard Resistance Cartomizer or Low Resistance Cartomizers
SmokTech 510 Standard Resistance Cartomizer or Low Resistance Cartomizers
I recommend buying one 5 pack of Standard Resistance and one 5 pack Low Resistance Cartomizers… UNLESS you are ordering for a 510 kit – then only order Standard Resistance. Again you will have to try them out to see which you prefer. A 5 pack of Cartomizers should cost between $6.00 – $7.00.
You will have the option to buy your Cartomizers in Black or Stainless Steel. The Black Cartomizers are really just Stainless Steel Cartomizers covered with a black label paper. I prefer the straight Stainless Steel Cartomizers myself, but it’s a personal choice. There are even Clear Cartomizers available. These are pretty neat, because you can see the actual juice in the batting, but be warned – they are plastic, and VERY prone to breaking. So for the time being, stick with the regular Stainless Steel Cartomizers.
Standard or XL? Cartomizers are also available in two different sizes, Standard and XL. As you can guess, the XL version is longer and holds more juice. Again, personal choice, but I prefer the XL ones, because I have to refill them less frequently.
How long will a Cartomizer last? With repeated filling, about 4-5 days. So get some to test out, and plan on ordering more immediately if these do work for you.
These neat little Clearomizers allow you to see your juice, and are very easy to fill. They come in different colors, and different ohms. But all you need to remember is…
The Clearomizers should be 1.8ohms, 2.1ohms or 2.4ohms. Anything above 2.4 ohms will be difficult to use on an eGo battery.
If there is wick length option always go with LONG WICKS.
If you go with a Clearomizer w/replaceable heads remember to order extra Replacement heads! Depending on the type you get, Clearomizers cost about $4.00 – $6.00 for one. Replacement heads costs about $7.00 to $10.00 per 5-pack.
How long will a Clearomizer last? With repeated filling, about 1-2 weeks, and a gently but through rinsing in hot water when switching juices. If you buy the type with replaceable heads, you will be able to simply swap out the head when you feel that it is not producing good flavor or vapor. So get some to test out, and plan on ordering more immediately if these do work for you.
SPECIAL NOTE: Most Clearomizers are made from poly-carbonate plastic, and susceptible to eJuice that now have the dubious classification as “tank-crackers”. Certain eJuice, such as cinnamon, or citrus (like “mountain dew”), even odd flavors like Banana flavors can crack this type of plastic.
For a list, see here: http://www.e-cigarette-forum.com/forum/tanks/219179-lets-make-list-juices-flavors-crack-tanks-ce2s-clearos-27.html#post6849917
This does not mean this is bad juice, (most of it is quite yummy), it just means that some folks have had issues. When in doubt, use a cartomizer or a glass ProTank.
There are 2 basic types of Vivi Nova Tanks, the original “Vision Vivi Nova Tank” or a clone. Some will say that a true Vision Vivi Nova tank works best, but if you are watching your money, a clone (known as just a “Vivi Nova Tank”) you probably work just as well.
The most important thing to remember when ordering a Vivi Nova is to make sure you order extra heads, and that those heads will work with the Vivi Nova you order. A Vivi Nova will not work on a Joye 510 battery – so don’t try it! A Vivi Nova tank should cost between $11.00 – $15.00, and additional heads can range between $2.00 – $4.00 each. But all you need to remember is…
Vivi Nova Tank – Long Wick
This will like come with 3 different heads – but you will only be able to use the 1.8 ohms and 2.4 ohms head.
Order replacement heads for the type of tank you buy (hopefully from the same vendor) in 1.8 ohms and/or 2.4 ohms, the minute you decide that this set-up works for you. Make sure you have the right heads for your Vivi tank, be it the Vision version or the clone.
How long will a Vivi Nova Tank Last? With repeated filling, about 2-3 weeks, and a gently but through rinsing in hot water when switching juices. If you buy the type with replaceable heads, you will be able to simply swap out the head when you feel that it is not producing good flavor or vapor. So get some to test out, and plan on ordering more immediately if these do work for you.
SPECIAL NOTE: Vivi Nova tanks are made from poly-carbonate plastic, and susceptible to eJuice that now have the dubious classification as “tank-crackers”. Certain eJuice, such as cinnamon, or citrus (like “mountain dew”) flavors can crack this type of plastic.
For a list, see here: http://www.e-cigarette-forum.com/forum/tanks/219179-lets-make-list-juices-flavors-crack-tanks-ce2s-clearos-27.html#post6849917
This does not mean this is bad juice, (most of it is quite yummy), it just means that some folks have had issues. When in doubt, order a metal Vivi Nova tank, or use a Cartomizer.
What Type of ProTank?
There are 2 basic types of ProTanks, the original Version 1, Version 2, and Version 3. The difference is Version 1 does not come apart. Version 2 comes completely apart to make it easier to clean. Version 3 comes complete apart and features a dual coil Bottom Coil. All versions feature a 510 thread connection on a Pyrex Glass tank with a replaceable Bottom Coil Atomizer Head. There is also a MiniProTank which holds less eJuice but does fit the eGo profile nicely.
The most important thing to remember when ordering a ProTank is to make sure you order extra Atomizer heads. Order replacement heads for the ProTank in 1.8 ohms and/or 2.4 ohms, the minute you decide that this set-up works for you.
SPECIAL NOTE: Version 3 Atomizer heads will not work with Versions 1 or 2 Protanks, and vice versa. Make sure you order the correct Atomizer heads for the tank you have.
How long will a ProTank Last? The Tank should last you forever, and does have replaceable parts. The Atomizer heads with repeated filling, will last about 4 days to a week. You will be able to simply swap out the head when you feel that it is not producing good flavor or vapor. So get some to test out, and plan on ordering more immediately if these do work for you.
SPECIAL NOTE: If your kit does not come with an Atomizer, you should consider picking up one 510 Standard or Low Resistance Atomizer. You can use an Atomizer to taste test different eJuices, rather than filling up an entire carto, tank or what have you.
New Atomizers ALWAYS come with some nasty protectant oil on them. So, before using your Atomizer flush it out in very hot water, and then blow it out to dry. Alternatively you can soak the Atomizer in a high-proof vodka (Like Everclear) then blow it out a few times, though this method can damage the finish on the outside of the Atomizer (which is why I recommend getting Stainless Steel ones).
To use an Atomizer for dripping all you have to do connect the Atomizer to your battery, drip 2-5 drops of eJuice into the Atomizer, attach a Drip Tip, and then fire up your battery. You will get about 4-5 puffs, usually enough to allow you to “taste” the eJuice. After you are done, make sure to clean your Atomizer by again flushing it with hot water or a vodka-soak before tasting the next flavor.
Most vendors will sell eJuice, and there will be one more Crash Course devoted entirely to eJuice. But if you anxious to order here are some quick tips:
What Type of eJuice?
The type of juice you should be ordering is 80%PG/20%VG or 70%PG/30%VG
PG gives more Flavor. VG produce more vapor. The amount above is a good blend of both worlds. Again, as you learn more about Vaping this might change for you, but this above amounts are a good guideline to start.
How Much Nicotine Should The Juice Have?:
This depends on a lot of different factors. Some pack a day smokers start out at either 24mg or 18mg. Others can’t vape more than 12mg. Some vape only 6mg. It varies from person to person. I recommend your first juice order have both 18mg and 24mg juices if you smoke a pack a day. If you smoke less than a pack a day, go for 18mg and 12mg or 14mg.
What’s with Double and Triple flavor?:
One of the side effects of smoking is your taste buds aren’t as lively as they could be. Buying your juice with Double Flavor can help overcome that. Double flavor is usually only $1.00 more, and well worth it.
What Flavor Should I Get?:
Ah, this is where things get tricky. As you now know – nothing will taste like a cigarette. But, here are some easy recommendations…
Menthol Smokers: They sell many types of Menthol and Mint juice. A no-brainer would be to pick up some of these.
Traditional Tobacco Smokers: There “tobacco” flavored eJuices, many of them will have under notes of caramel, or coffee, or a number of other things. Pick a few to try, and you will learn what you are looking for through trial and error.
For Any Smoker: The best thing to try is a flavor that you like – when starting out I recommend “simple” flavors; fruits, mints, candies, chocolates, etc. One-note flavors might be best… then again, you may be dying to try Mango Mojito, and it maybe the best thing you have ever had! Buying eJuice is a big adventure, and the internet is filled with a number of vapers that have sampled and reviewed eJuices.. but flavor is subjective. While I think the “Cherry Ice” from www.vapedudes.com is the bomb – you make think it tastes like cherry NyQuil.
Go forth, and experience vaping for yourself – and you will quickly learn what flavors and vendors work for you!
Last Note on eJuice: Many vendors sell Samplers, a 3mL little bottle of eJuice that will let you experience a flavor before buying a large bottle. I highly recommend getting Samplers or smaller inexpensive bottles before committing to buying a 30mL of any eJuice.
The Last Few Extras You Will Want to Get
No matter what start up kit you purchase, be wise and pick up additional batteries once you get going.
510 batteries last only 1-2 hours, and 2 little batteries are not going to get you through the day.
Ego batteries can last 4-9 hours, dependent on size, but can take a few hours to re-charge.
Plan ahead, and pick up extra batteries when you order!
When using Cartomizers, and even some of the Vivi Nova Tanks, you will want to have a Drip Tip. The Drip tip takes the place of the white plug of the cartomizer, and get your lips safely away from the heated cartomizer tube. On Vivi Novas, some can use different Drip tips. Make sure you read the description of the unit you are ordering to see if it’s possible. Drip tips will cost between $2.00 to $4.00. There are many different styles, including plastic, aluminum, steel, and even glass. As you are starting out try an inexpensive plastic drip tip, and upgrade from there. However be warned, the plastic ones can and will break. I know, you will never drop your PV… or have your stupid cat knock it off the desk… But trust me, get a 2 or 3 cheap drip tips when you order.
That’s Part Two, a down and dirty guide to ordering your PV. I hope you enjoyed it. Part Three will de-mystify the almighty eJuice!
Thanks for reading, and Vape On!