Hi my name is Shalin, I am the resident flavour artisan at the Vapourium. Along with working here I enjoy spinning yarns so I thought I would give you all a little history about how I came to make e-liquid
Back when the Vapourium was just a cunning plan in the mind of its creator, Dan, he had already started asking me to try making some flavours. My consistent incredulous response was, "I don’t even vape ow". His request came from the fact that I am trained in perfumery, aromatherapy and herbalism, I have also dabbled in cooking, bartending and other mixology. In short my first love is alchemy. Yes, alchemy, which along with meaning the ancient pursuit of turning lead into gold also means, according to Oxford “a seemingly magical process of transformation, creation or combination” or Merriam-Webster “a power or process of transforming something common into something special”. Alchemy takes many forms for me, from making an extra special cocktail or stew to blending or (encouraging others to mix ) the right music with the best people to make an event memorable.
I started working with Dan helping him and Alice gut and turn a hideously decorated hairdressers into Aotearoa”s first brick and mortar Vape Shop. Along the way I was around many different people mixing flavours. Eventually I started trying my hand at it and soon I was hooked. I quickly realised that the process of crafting a fine ejuice was far more challenging than making perfume due to the way the flavours changed so dramatically with steeping. I can’t resist a challenge.
I have changed my ideas and methods towards crafting juice a whole lot along the way but I think the thing that truly gives us an advantage when it comes to making juice is that it is never just made by me or one other person. Every good juice that we have made has been a collaborative effort. In the early days Dan fired ideas at me and I simply put them together. These days Maia’s marketing ideas have led to her making demands for me to make a flavour just so ( I think Pavs theory is as much hers as mine) Nick is ever ready to suggest a subtle addition of a concentrate to give a new flavour it’s pop. Joe has crafted 2 of our top sellers and Zach is fast becoming our flavour research extraordinaire.The whole team gets on board with trying the flavours and there are some very different palates amongst us. If I had listened to 2 of my co-workers for example we would never have released Deez Melons which is currently our top selling flavour. After I have an idea where the flavour is going I put it on the counter as a tester for our customers to try. I have tried the patience of many of our regulars by taking too long to release a flavour that they like but can’t have, while I give it some final tweaks or wait for the bulk order of concentrates to arrive.
It is one of the many reasons why I love working here so much. I am surrounded by alchemists, budding and accomplished of the first order and they make the creative process an inspiring humorous and rewarding one.
The Mason RDA offers dual tiered, focus directed airflow straight to the coil with a variable triple tiered air flow control ring. Staying true to the uni-post deck design, the negative posts are dug out leaving more room for coils and cotton configurations.
Square center post in a square hole in a square peek insulator in a square deck hole ensures no spinning or loose connections. The delrin insert in the top cap is threaded for added convenience, allowing the user to replace and remove the insert for replacement or chuff upgrades. The extended 510 connection keeps this rda safe on any mod, even if it's a hybrid. The unique heat sink built into the top cap also echoes the brick mason theme, as does the overall packaging of this rda.
Three post deck ( Each with two post holes )
Sturdy space conscious design
Last week I lost my vape, now it was probably around somewhere, but it seemed like a good enough excuse to get my hands on one of the new Wismec RX300's by JayBo! Then a new problem came up, all of my RDA's are 22mm... And looked absolutely ridiculous sitting atop the beast of a mod I had just purchased.. I looked up and my answer was clear! The 30mm Mason RDA!
I was dubious at first, the standard 24gauge Nichrome, five wrap dual coils looked a bit ridiculous sitting in, what is a monster of an RDA. But I persevered anyway hating every puffs. Now I can't logically blame this on the velocity style deck, although I want to. I've never liked building in velocity style decks because I've found that they work well with standard, clapton and twisted wire, but not the flat or multicore wire I prefer to use. After a few days of vaping agony, I decided to right my wrongs and actually sit my ass down and build something worth vaping. Because of the velocity style deck, I knew I would get away with anything too wide without the inevitable OCD that would follow. I ended up with dual 7wrap alien coils, make with28gauge kanthal and 34gauge nichrome, and because I got a free pack of cotton bacon with my Mason 30mm RDA, I thought I might as well bang some of that in as well!
I love it. Flavour, check. Clouds bigger than my tiny ex-smokers lungs can handle, check. enough room inside to build to my hearts content, check. An exciting array of little prezzies under the foam insert, check. What is there not to love about this, besides the velocity style deck of course, and even taking that into account, I've been quite happy to use this everyday for the past two weeks.
If you're an avid coil builder, or just someone wanting to throw some MASSIVE clouds, I would give this baby a shot or two. You will not be disappointed.
Hi, I’m Ben, one of the new lab techs at the Vapourium lab. The lab is where we make and bottle our various e-liquid flavours before they make their way out into the world to be vaped. From the outside it looks a bit like something out of a sci-fi movie - all white coveralls, fluorescent lights, and stainless steel - but the atmosphere inside is anything but sterile (figuratively that is - due to the HEPA filter and airlock the room is kept as particle free as possible, minimising any possible contaminations in our e-liquid).
A typical day at the lab involves bottling up out of stock juice, mixing new e-liquid batches from our flavour concentrates, sterilising equipment, and testing new methods of production and equipment. All as you might expect for an e-liquid lab, but what sets working for the Vapourium apart is the culture and attitude cultivated from the top down of having a fun time at work and of everyone being encouraged to put forth their own ideas about how things are done and what could be improved. It’s a joy seeing the excitement of the whole team whenever a new piece of lab equipment arrives and then getting stuck into working out how to incorporate it into our workflow, making things faster and more efficient, which feeds back into more excitement about how we can make things even better in the future.
This culture was immediately noticeable when I started at the Vapourium, and as someone who usually takes a long time to come out of my shell around new people I knew something was special about the place when I was joining in with the shit talk on my second shift - everyone’s just so damn nice and fun to be around that I couldn’t help but feel at home from the get go. This makes a huge difference when you’re doing what can be precise, repetitive work, and so most days fly by with a healthy dose of laughter and good tunes, barely feeling like a job most of the time.
It’s a genuine pleasure working with so many ambitious and driven people who are always looking to expand and improve what we do and it’ll be exciting to see how we’ll continue to grow and improve going forward.
Over the weeks we've talked a lot about the different aspects of a basic vaporizer and where they come from. But we have a product coming back in that I, personally, am very excited about.
The RDA Starter Kit. These take building your very own coils in an RDA straight back to the basics. Now, you may say, Maia.. This is shameless advertising! and you would probably be right. But every day we have customers who come into the store, or email through because they've bought a beautiful flashy RDA online and can't for the life of them see how this could be easier than premade coils. Now every person has their own opinion on dripping, some people like the customizability that comes from a small amount of practice, others can't handle the maintenance of having to drip e-liquid on the cotton whenever they want to use their vape. I love RDA's, dripping is almost second nature to me now, so much so that I have developed a technique of dripping and vaping one handed. These kits come with everything you need to build your first coil, a simple 3 post RDA, cotton, wire, a coil winder, ceramic tipped tweezers and wire cutters. Now each person has their own way of building, for example, I only use half of the coil winder because I find using the top half to wrap my coils annoying, where others use drill bits or screw drivers. Some even just use their ceramic rods. To anyone who hasn't built before, so much of this will sound like absolute jargin, which is why I've included the links to more information about each item, just click on the item in question and it will take you to our website where you can find out what is what. I could spend the next 10 minutes trying to explain how to build a perfect coil, but instead I'm going include a YouTube video by GrimmGreen, who is a relatively famous coil builder from way back, below. It's about 22minutes long, but he goes into great detail about what you need and how everything works. I'm currently listening to it as I type, to double check that I won't be putting you through all kinds of suffering watching a builder wank on for hours. I wish I had something along these lines when I first started building, I wasted so much money on random stuff I heard I would definitely need, and even more on RDA's that I still haven't put a build in to this day. The key is to not give up, take your time and have a little patience. You won't regret it.
When I first met Megan I was a newbie coil builder, with a small amount of potential and very little patience. I would see Megan’s coil builds all over the various vaping Facebook pages and it stirred up a little bit of envy. Over this past year I’ve spent many nights talking to Megan online and had the pleasure of meeting her properly at the Tauranga Vape Day, and again in Auckland. She gave me the confidence to get out there and start building more coils, and has to be the main source of my coil building inspiration. Vaping is a male dominated industry, everywhere I looked there were men building coils, blowing clouds, designing RDA’s and mechanical mods. Megan’s Instagram page was a breath of fresh air. For these reasons and so many more, I was very excited when Megan agreed to do this interview with me.
Like Tom, who we featured in our last Newsletter. Megan was never a “smoker”, as a woman with chronic asthma, smoking would exacerbate her attacks, but still she was looking for a vice. After trying a Hookah she found that that form of “smoking” didn’t give her the asthmatic attacks that she had grown used to, she did her research and found that with all the accessories a Hookah was going to end up being quite pricey. This is when a friend of her put her onto the idea of vaping, and once she found out that you could get different flavours of e-liquid, she delved back into her research, this time on vaping. In the beginning, she intended on buying the EVOD pen style starter kit, that many people start with, but didn’t want to be stuck with the dilemma of upgrading within a few months. She went back to her research and after doing the hard yards with ohms law and battery safety, decided on a mechanical mod, specifically the Nemesis Tube and Mutation X v2. Since then Megan has been taking New Zealand’s vaping community by storm with her intricate and artistic coil building, and as a professional photographer she has been able to provide me with some magnified images of her work.
It didn’t take long for Megan to be submerged in what we call, vapelife, she ohhed and ahhed over the coils other vapes and coil builders showcase on Instagram, which is where she caught the bug. “All the different and intricate coils on Instagram had me wondering if I could do the same? Naturally, I started with the easier builds and progressed on to the more technically challenging ones. Even though I still build coils, I don’t really make many for artistic purposes anymore, I build more for vape-ability purposes now.” What is Megan’s favourite coil? Alien wire. Alien wire is an excellent all round coil for maximum flavour and cloud production. Although Megan started with chucking clouds, things change and after discovering more and more flavours of e-liquids, she started dabbling in more flavour. Every set-up she has reflects her choice, mods that can handle the thermal mass of the coils she produces with RDA’s that can fit them. After winning the H-Cigar VT200 from one of our very own online giveaways, she discovered the joys of having a customisable DNA mod, and from there has continued building her collection with The Hustler DNA 250, by Legit Mods in Christchurch, personalised with her very own OhmKiwi Coils logo on the battery door.
Vaping in New Zealand has always been a controversial topic, but for people like Megan, it’s simple. It’s better than smoking. A statement shared by almost every member of popular vaping pages like NZ Vapes and Vape NZ, through these pages New Zealand has developed strong vaping community, not unlike ones that you would see in America or England, where vaping is more prominent. Even with the similarities in these communities, Megan has found there are a few key differences, “Most of what I’ve seen regarding the differences in vaping communities in NZ and overseas have been on Facebook. So, it’s a little difficult to compare the communities due to how different people act when they’re online compared to when they’re in person. As diverse as the Global vaping community is, it’s an incredibly supportive community with many members willing to help and guide each other through their vaping journey. On Facebook, I’ve seen more compassion and courtesy within the NZ vaping community compared to what I’ve seen from the overseas vaping communities. Especially when it comes to gender. Vaping is a male dominated industry, and I’ve seen the sexism and the sexual harassment in more of the overseas vaping communities than our own. Granted, no vaping community is perfect and we’ve all seen our fair share of drama within our local vaping community, but I love our dysfunctional vape family.”
As usual we ended the interview with the question, if there was anything you could say to the vaping community right now, what would it be? “Vape safely by doing your research! If you have the knowledge, educate others so they can vape safely! Finally… Be kind to each other! We are a diverse group of people from many different backgrounds and personalities, but one thing brings us all together… #VapingHasSavedOurLives!!!”
Thanks for taking the time to do this interview with me Megan! We look forward to many more Vape Days spent with you and the rest of the community!
Unlike many of New Zealand’s vapers, Thomas had already quit smoking by the time he took up vaping. As a hobbiest who likes to keep up to date with the latest in technology, it’s no wonder he was drawn to the vapelife that many of us have come to know and love. In fact his quote on the matter sums it up pretty nicely, "I saw vaping as a new hobby as it boasted a plethora of intricacy and science behind it. I am the type who keeps up to date with technology and am an avid hobbiest so I saw great potential in this new medium." Although Tom wasn't a smoker when he first started vaping, it was a converted smoker that first introduced him to the lifestyle. Starting off like so many of us do with the standard pen styled eGo vape, in the 3 years Tom has been vaping his collection has grown extensively, he partially blames this on his esteem as a vape reviewer in New Zealand, always buying new products in order to review them. Now boasting a collection of 30 mods and roughly 60 atomisers, Tom can't hide the fact that he has an affinity for shiny new toys. Particularly mods which contain the DNA chip, which make up at least 4 of the mods in his collection. With new legislations around vaping coming in soon, the future of vaping is a hot topic in New Zealand. While Tom is aware of the stigma around vaping, he believes most of this is down to misinformation. "I believe that it is the future. The amount of vapers in Auckland alone is rising incrementally to the point where walking down the street you now see more vapers than smokers, and to me that is a great achievement." During his time vaping, Tom has made some amazing friends in the vape community, people who he would never have come across if it weren't for this one thing that they have in common. People like Cam (Co-Star in Vaping Iwi), who encouraged Tom to continue doing product reviews and have had a huge influence in keeping him going with his own E-Liquids company.
We're running out of time today, so I asked Tom if he had anything he would like to say to the Vaping Community at large, and his reply was one of encouragement. "If we all fight together towards vaping being 100% legal in New Zealand, we can win the battle for our right to vape but to get there we have to join forces no matter the indifference." I'm feel lucky to have been able to spend the time I have with Tom at Auckland Vape Day, and look forward to seeing more of him around this community.
I love my job. Over the years I’ve had a very broad range of roles from labouring to corporate admin, all of them have had their positives and some of them have had their negatives. One thing I found that has the biggest impact on my job satisfaction wasn’t my pay, or my responsibilities, but rather my colleagues.
During the summer I used to labour at a wharf unloading fishing boats. Our team would be called at short notice to start a 12 hour shift in a -30degree freezer throwing around 28kg boxes of fish. The work was back breaking to say the least, and yet those 12 hours of toil were some of the most enjoyable works hours I’ve ever had. It was during one of those 12 hour stints that I realised the best thing about any job I’ve done is the people I work with.
Fast forward to 2015 and I’m starting my role at Vapourium. I started off tentatively, as you do when starting a new job, but in no time I found my walls broken down as I shared my life’s successes and failures with my work-mates. My work-mates fast became best-mates, as cheesey as it sounds. As Vapourium has grown and morphed into what it is today we’ve taken on more staff, and made more friends.
I know it’s a cliche to call your business a family, but there is little else in the English language to describe the unit that is our team. There have been days where I’ve struggled to leave the house only to get to work and be all smiles within a few minutes of shit-talk with Shalin. There’s been days of high-stress where a quick witted comment from Dan has dissolved my stress and given me perspective. This is part of our workplace culture that I absolutely adore.
All our staff are amazing. We all have sass and wit by the bucket load and it translates to our customers who are often included in our hi-jinks and jokes. I know this post is intended for you guys, our customers, however I feel like I really need to let everyone know what an amazing and awesome team we have. These guys are the best and I am so grateful for everyone that I have the privilege of working with.
So to the team; THANK YOU. To our customers; you are in the best hands. Ever.
Initially when this little beauty came along we had issues with the tank leaking and it received a bit of a bad rep. Five more batches deep and I am really happy with the way Eleaf have ironed out the kinks. No more leaks and another coil option.
So there are a few things I really like about the Pico. This first is its size and aesthetic and how much punch it packs for it’s relatively compact size. Of all the colours I find it hard to choose between the black on black (although that would increase the likelihood of losing it during shenanigans) and the bright and beautiful pink (I even have a lipstick that matches perfectly).
Many of the reasonably priced starter kits with omph on the market with a variable battery have a heap more battery power than the atomiser can handle. I really like the fact that you can make full use of this battery and crank it up to its 75 watts with the EC head 0.18 coils. Is it is not recommended to go above 60 watts with the 0.3 and 0.5ohm coils if you are using max vg juice like our range.
The Pico takes an external 18650 battery we usually recommend the Samsung 25R to go with it. This is a fantastic advantage as it means you can get more than one battery and keep a fully charged one on hand incase you run out on the go then you can swap them out. Make sure you store your spare 18650 safely in a wee box or silicon case, the wrong kinds of explosions happen when you leave them in your spare change pocket or with other metal things.
The Pico is a 2ml top fill tank for ease of use and it comes with a 0.3ohm and 0.5ohm coil in the box. It has multiple functions that are clearly displayed along with battery life on its LED screen though if I’m honest most people I know never use the temperature control option.
I find this tank really reliable now and have only had good feedback from the many customers I have sold it to. When I cheekily borrow a tester for the night so I have the ease of a tank its always the Pico I grab.
Did you know Propylene Glycol is toxic to cats? Propylene glycol (PG) is the main ingredient found in most e-liquids. At Vapourium we pride ourselves in providing an awesome range of “max VG” (Maximum possible vegetable glycerin) e-liquid so our premium e-liquids contain mainly VG instead. However, in order to create the best flavours, or if nicotine is added to the e-liquid, our VG liquids will contain a small amount of PG. Propylene glycol has the potential to cause hemolytic anemias via the presence of "Heinz bodies" in cat blood. As a result the FDA declared PG unsafe for cats in 1996, and PG has since been removed from all cat food. The fact that the issue was detected because PG was put in cat food until the 90s, helps us gain some insight as to the amount of PG that is required to cause serious concern.
"Research has shown that the effect is dose-dependent: in testing, five weeks of feeding cats PG in ordinary cat-food like quantities (1.6 g per kg in body weight) increased the percentage of Heinz bodies to 28, and after three weeks eating higher quantities (8 g per kg) it went up to 92 percent.." Source - (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2708106) Judging by the data, your cat would have to consume alot of PG in order for the PG to have a significant effect on your cats health, however, the data does not show any information about cats inhaling PG vapour. Although PG vapour when dispersed in a room dissapates rather quickly compared to cigarette smoke, it will still linger for a while in a room without much airflow. Depending on many factors like air movement, room size and the amount of vapour you are producing its difficult to determine exactly what the potential harm is from passive vaping around cats.
In conclusion, it is unlikely that PG vapour will cause any harm to your cats, and it is VERY unlikely that any of Vapourium's premium eliquid range will cause any harm to your cats, but please be considerate when vaping around your cat friends. Even though Vapourium's premium e-liquid contains minimal PG, as there is a lack of data around the effects of passive PG vapour and cats, we would recommend not vaping directly on your cat or your cats' food to ensure your cat is happy and healthy. If you are concerned about vaping indoors, try and get some airflow in the room to dissipate the vapour faster. Although unlikely, if you are vaping a PG based e-liquid, and your cat is exhibiting any of the following symptoms; Skin discolouration, fever, loss of appetite, weakness, pale lips mouth and gums, or red/brown urine, please seek veterinarian advice.
Roughly 9 months ago Sam was given his first vape and e-liquid, bought from an unknown source and passed on from a friend, as a method to quit smoking. Like many of us, Sam’s first vape was a pen styled vapeand came with a selection of DIY juice, not knowing where the juice came from, or anything about vaping really. Sam was put off pretty quickly, until he bought an iTaste, within weeks his iTaste was malfunctioning which is when he found his way to the Vapourium, and started his longterm love affair with VapeLife.
When asked how long it took for him to get hooked into VapeLife, he looked me dead in the eye and said, “I met you, and the rest of the Vapourium crew *laughs*. You're the one who suckered me into spending $300 on my first proper vape set up (Evic Mini and Indestructible RDA), then you said that I should YouTube if I had any issues and couldn’t get into store. And as soon as I started on YouTube I got hooked on it, I had so much fun looking it up and learning to build (coils). I just wanted new things to build on and use!”.
Although Sam started off with his pen styled vape, his collection is now something to be envied! Just today he had two high powered rigs with him, with a Vaporesso Tarot Pro and Herakles RTA set up to chuck some clouds! And a Maxo Quad and Tsunami RDA combo, built for flavour with some of the Vapourium's premade Spaced Alien wire. But that's not all, he normally carries 3-4 mods around with him, just in case he feels the need for something a little different. I couldn't help but laugh and asked why the need for so many mods at a time, "One for every set up, I don't know, different flavours? I guess I'm fussy!".
Originally intending to quit smoking due to the expense, Sam has become an integral part of New Zealand’s Vape Community, running the new NZ Coil Builder’s page with his partner, Amba.
New Zealand’s Vape Community is a passionate topic of conversation with any avid Vaper in NZ, so it’s not surprising that it came up during our talk, and honestly it’s not hard to see why this community means so much to him.
Near the beginning of his life of vaping Sam found himself in a predicament that left him with no juice, no money and only his coils, he was close to leaning back towards the stinkies (an affectionate term for cigarettes). So he left a post on one of the popular Vape groups on Facebook “Vape NZ”, offering to swap the coils he had built for e-liquid. Within minutes people were messaging him, asking for his address, sending him enough juice to tide him over and support him in his plight to stay off the cigarettes.
“The vaping community is amazing, great family. We’re pretty lucky to have the people there and the community that we have. We’re supported by venders and and the vape community in general. I think we are luckier than others, having such a tight nit group.”
I asked Sam if he had anything to say to you all, “Show us your clouds! Nah, keep going the way you’re going, the community we have is amazing. Look at you (Vapourium), you still have a passion for it, even though you work in it. You still do half the vape life for free. Look at Cam and Tom (Tom and Cam run a youtube show Vaping Iwi, reviewing different vender’s juice and products). It’s people like you guys that make me want to do more for the NZ Coil Builder’s page.
Sam continues to be a regular at the shop, and is one of our best customers! We look forward to many more conversations around the table with a coffee and your latest mod!
Working for a vape shop has loads of crazy benefits. One of those crazy benefits is getting to sample a plethora of sample e-juice from overseas makers looking to get a piece of the NZ vape market. While our eliquid is the best around, it never hurts to add some others to the collection.
Now I’ve tried my share of e-liquid and I’ll tell you now it is not all created equally. I’ve had juice that’s left my eyes watering, and others that have rendered me to a Gollum-like creature clutching at the bottle refusing to share with anyone else until the last drips hiss on my RDA. One such sample that particularly piqued my interest was from the guys in Florida who produce Good Life Vapor e-liquid. Good Life Vapor have a vast range of eliquids and various collections that pair nicely together. Their e-juice isn’t as sickly sweet as a lot of American juices seem to be, and their production complies with the highest standards, much like our own e-liquid.
I decided to first try The Hatter, an e-liquid that is part of their Wonderland Collection. The Hatter is described as “a completely original white tea with a splash of earl grey, youth berries and subtle notes of citrus” and is a well balanced and delicious juice. This bottle mysteriously disappeared. Next I decided to try Pink Pulldown. I’m not even sure what a pulldown is, but the flavour would suggest it’s yum. Pink Pulldown is a well made raspberry & pomegranate eliquid. This bottle I had to begrudgingly share with Maia.
Seeing how this was progressing I decided we’d have to get some in, if not at the least to save me from being mugged by my co-workers for the remaining samples. We now stock Good Life Vapor e-juice onour website under the “Imported” tab, and will be adding other imported e-liquids after they’ve passed our fiendish vetting process.
Having taken up smoking at the tender age of 18, I was surrounded by friends who did the same. There was no impetus to stop, and any attempts to do so were thwarted by envy whenever a buddy lit up around me. I told myself I’d quit before I turned 25, and was quite happy with that logic - it was far off enough that I didn’t have to properly consider quitting. But boy, did I try. Occasionally spite was enough to keep me from smoking for a week, but I’d inevitably crawl back.
But finally another way out appeared on the scene. At first, the cheap, leaky vapes that we first laid our hands on were a source of ridicule, and made us easy joke fodder for our smoking friends. Discouraged, hands covered in juice, many of us went back to smoking.
As more well-designed units appeared on the market, and a brick and mortar store opened up in my city, it became easier and easier to step away from smoking. Vaping was cheaper, healthier, smelled better, and my teeth - they were so white now! Suddenly it was three weeks before I would cave for a cigarette. The guilt would sink in, and I’d give my remaining smokes to an all-too-eager friend. Then I’d try again, with a different juice, different levels of nicotine - and I’d reach six weeks. The next time, eight weeks. The times I revisited cigarettes discouraged me further; reminding me of how much nicer the vape tasted, how much cheaper it was, how much better off I’d be without cigarettes.. Suddenly, I had both the impetus AND the tools necessary to kill off my cigarette addiction. Without vapes? I’d never get that far, and quitting before I turned 25 was a pipe-dream of procrastination. Now, it was a reality.
The Herakles RTA-2 by Sense is the next version of the popular Herakles sub ohm tanks. This is made clear through the similarity in the tank design, although it now comes with a huge 6ml capacity and a greatly appreciated top fill opening. The juice flow couldn’t be easier to work with, you can close it off completely, or if your wicking is on point, you can have it wide open for flavour that matches that of an RDA. Some prominent features of the Herakles RTA-2 are its quad Adjustable Exterior Airflow, a 2 post (2.5mm Diameter each) velocity style building deck, and it’s huge 25mm diameter body.
Admittedly the wicking is a pain at first (as should be expected by now when it comes to RTA’s), my first attempt left me with monster of a dry burn after a few tokes. My second, left about 3mls of juice pouring out the airflow like a beer bong, but after watching a couple of build tutorials (which I do recommend doing before your first build on this) I found my self-chain vaping with thick, flavourful and smooth clouds, without having to stop to drip! (And that is the RTA dream!).
The Herakles RTA – 2 in the hands of someone with basic skill building skill level is exactly what you want out of an RTA. For me it delivers that which I have been seeking out of every RTA I have tried before it, and that is the sense that I am vaping an RDA that I do not need to drip. If you can get the build down properly, then you will not be disappointed.
There are three generations of vapes, starting with the ecig, a small cigarette styled vape that traditionally come with replaceable cartridges but now can also come with refillable atomisers. The second generation of vapes are the more pen styled vapes, which provide a larger capacity battery and connect with the old school ego threads. The third generation gets a bit more complicated, the key element is a mod. These come in a variety of shapes and sizes, which makes it difficult to specify which exactly is a third generation vape. They break down to two sub-categories, the mechanical mod (Also referred to as a “mech mod”. A mechanical mod has no inbuilt circuitry, but rather a direct circuit to the Atomiser. These are not recommended for beginner vapers, see our mechanical mod guide for more information.) and regulated mods (A regulated mod has inbuilt circuitry for battery protection and generally allows for adjustment of voltage/wattage. It may feature a screen to display information. It may also feature different “modes”, e.g. temperature control mode or power mode.)
When you're buying your first vape, a lot of people are looking for something that resembles a cigarette with mouth to lung capabilities (when you take the vapour into your mouth before inhaling to your lungs, closely resembling a cigarette). All first and second generation vaporisers are primarily used like this, although almost any device below 30 watts has the mouth to lung capability, whether they have specially designed drip tips like the eGo AIO or eGo AIO Box Mod, or variable wattage like the 20watt iStick(featured in our Easy Vape Starter Kit). In store I would normally get you to try and range of starter kits, feel how they are in your hand, how comfortable it is to push the button and how you feel about the resistance of the draw. Online, unfortunately, that isn't an option. It will always be a luck of the draw type scenario when you're buying something online, but the more information you have, the easier it gets. But this is when it gets a little trickier, with vape tech moving so quickly, we're getting smaller, cheaper more powerful units every month! Where a standard starter kit used to be a pen style vape, like the Beginner Starter Kit, we now have a huge range of starter kits that run sub ohm coils (the resistance of the coil is below one ohm, meaning it heats up faster and naturally produces more vapor) such as the iStick Basic by eLeaf that we featured in our last newsletter, which although only runs up to 25 watts hits like a small car.
As enthusiasm for vaping grows and more people are enjoying freedom from tobacco we thought it was time we talked about the some of the issues that are cropping up about vaping around other people. It is really important to be considerate of others, when you vape and to not inflict your personal choice on them as when you blow out vape you are affecting their air space. As much as most of us like the taste and smell and effect its is not everyone's preference and it is good to respect that. Please make sure you have permission first, informed consent is essential. As they can not give informed consent it is not a good idea to vape around children or animals. With a little respect and consideration, we can make sure appreciation and understanding for vaping continues to grow in Aotearoa. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4565991/
With the rise of the personal vapourising device we saw the rise of cloud blowing monsters however not everyone wants to make such a bold statement, enter the ecig.
Ecigs are not new to vaping by any means, they were some of the original vapes when vaping hit the market. As the technology progressed a lot of vapers became all about cloud mass yet this is not for everyone. Ecigs are named such as they are comparable in size, draw, and cloud production to conventional cigarettes.
My enthusiasm for ecigs began when I started using an X-TC-2 kit by JOECIG. These tiny wee ecigs come in a handy charging/storage case that overcomes the small charge the battery carries. About the size of a roll-your-own the X-TC battery is the smallest vape on the market. The battery carries a total charge of 90mAh, which is enough for around 20minutes constant vaping. The beauty of the X-TC-2 kit is that you get 2 X-TC batteries, as well as the 900mAh charging/storage case. This gives you around 10 total charges of the batteries, more than enough to last the day. The draw and the amount of vapour is small enough that you wouldn’t feel self conscious using this in the presence of smokers.
Currently I am excited about the Halo G6 Ecig Kit. The Halo G6 is an ecig that comes in a little smaller than a bic pen yet provides a decent amount of vapour with a similar draw to a tailor-made. The Halo G6 is consistently rated as one of the best ecigs on the market, and it’s obvious why when you use one. When used with a high strength nicotine eliquid (I find 12-18mg to be perfect) the throat-hit and amount of vapour would be very familiar to any smoker. These things are as realistic as they get and would be a perfect first vape for anyone looking for a cigarette alternative.
Ecigs are great vapes for people who don’t want to have a big cumbersome vapouriser in their pocket. They offer familiarity and ease of use that their bigger counterparts can’t and personally I’m very excited to see how these grow.
The Phenotype-L RDA is a dual 3mm post rebuildable dripping atomizer that comes from a collaboration between both Anarchist and Aria Built. This is currently my go to RDA, and I want to share why.
The most prominent feature by far is its easily adjustable quad slot vertical air flow. This feature gives you the ability to greatly customize your airflow to suite your build and needs, while also making it easy to maintain a cool temperature without having to compromise your desired build.
Other features include a 24k gold plated negative post, gold plated 510 contact, 4mm Deep Juice pool and a huge Anarchist and Aria logo engraved onto each side (which look amazingly cool).
A potential downside is that there is no airflow option for a single coil build. That said, if there was an option for a single build, then it would not have the beautifully customisable airflow that it currently has. Personally, I say that’s worth it. Most people will never find themselves with all four airflow slots open. So you could say the airflow is a little overkill, but the huge amount of airflow option allows you to keep your clouds cool (especially if you use the larger mouth piece that comes with it) on builds where you would usually find the vapour getting pretty warm.
When it comes to flavour I find the Phenotype to be a bit on the weak side. The flavour is certainly there, but for a flavour chaser this would not be a decent option for you. Cloud chasing on the other hand, this could be your new favourite toy. The Phenotype provides you with the ability to run some pretty beasty coils that will chuck out some huge clouds, all while keeping the clouds cool, smooth and tasty (tasty enough for my standards anyway, I’m no flavour chaser). On top of that, the phenotype is outright eye candy. It is elegantly designed, and manufactured to be as sturdy and strong as we have come to expect from Ari built products.
Are you looking for a cloud chasing RDA with max airflow control, a decent juice pool and an easy to use dual post build deck? All without spending more than $100? Then I recommend you check out the Phenotype-L RDA by Anarchist & Aria.
I love low profile RDAs. Also known as shorties or miniRDAs, these compact atomisers are just so simple and discreet I find myself hard pressed to use any other RDA.
Low profile RDAs are great. They look nice on a box mod, they fit nice in your pocket, and they perform as well as any RDA if you know how to use them. Brag warning: I won the open class cloud competition on a Mako Shorty that had a low profile 510 Dotmod driptip! So it goes to show that mini RDAs can huck clouds like the best of them.
My first mini RDA was the Mako Shorty by Beyond Vape. The Mako Shorty is a smaller take on it’s cloud chasing behemoth of a cousin the Mako War 2. With similar cyclops adjustable airflow, 3 post deck, as well as your choice of a 510 driptip or big open bore drip tip, the Mako Shorty is literally just a shorter version of the Mako War 2. Building on the Mako Shorty can be a bit fiddly however once you get used to it it’s not too hard to pop in some big ol’ claptons. My preferred build for this being a simple 4mm internal diameter dual clapton with ~4wraps coming in at around 0.4ohms. This was perfect when used my Coolfire IV TC 100, the internal diameter letting the wicks suck up as much juice as they needed, and with just enough room for the airflow to go unimpeded. With my low profile Dotmod driptip the flavour is amazing, similar to any big RDA.
Currently I’m using the Dinghy RDA by Flawless Vapes. The Dinghy doesn’t have adjustable airflow like the Mako Shorty, however the slots are well placed and allow for a similar amount of airflow to the Mako. The Dinghy comes with a chuff-styled mouthpiece which lets you take large direct-to-lung draws. With a similar build to the Mako Shorty I’m able to blow huge clouds, however unlike the Mako Shorty the flavour isn’t quite as good, possibly due to the big chuff cap mouthpiece.
If I’m honest I’m surprised low profle RDAs haven’t been a bigger deal in the vape industry. Their function is comparable to some of the best RDAs I’ve used and their form (in my opinion) is a lot more user friendly, better suited to those who like to pocket their RDA when they’re on the go.
We're really excited about the range of mechanical mods and RDAs we've been able to bring in this last few months. The highlight has undoubtedly been the products made by Avid Lyfe and Comp Lyfe. Avid Lyfe was founded Erik Hutchinson, aka "the Modfather". Erik Hutchinson is credited with starting the American competitive vaping scene. Avid Lyfe and Comp Lyfe have a few core products that are always available but most of what they do is either short run or limited edition. All of their products are designed and manufactured in the United States.
The staple Avid Lyfe Mech mechanical mod is the Able Mod. As with all the other Avid Lyfe mechanical mods the machining is second to none and the button, once you've cleaned and oiled it (as Avid Lyfe recommend), is second to none. It has a removable sleeve which you can replace with a variety of others of varying designs to customise it how you like.
Cody is our resident Trickster at the Vapourium, not only that but he took out the Open Cloud Comp at Tauranga Vape Day with his trusty Mako Shorty on a Noisy Cricketseries mod. Afterwards it was said that you could see his coils glowing red through the air flow holes, can I say lungs of steel now? But Vape Fame isn't the name if the game, when asked why he first started vaping his story is the same as many of our own. "I took up vaping to cut down on smoking." but quitting smoking isn't the only reason Cody is so interested in vaping, as one of our key researchers Cody is always on the look out for new and improved vape technology, "It's impressive to see how powerful pocket sized batteries are now days, and it's exciting to see where it is going". Cody backs up his statement with his daily combo of a Mako Shorty and Coolfire VI TC-100 box mod (featured in our last newsletter) and the trusty Dotmod Friction Fit Drip Tip, why is this Cody's vape of choice? With a .2 second ramp up time the Coolfire doesn't waste any time, and when paired with a low profile RDA like the Mako shorty it fits nicely in your pocket and isn't cumbersome to carry around. With little internal diameter the Mako Shorty produces an impressive amount of vapour and coupled with that low ramp up time it's not surprising Cody can produce that clouds that he does. A guy with charisma such as Cody could work anywhere, so why the Vapourium? "Cheap Karma Cola." Was his first answer with a grin on his face, "Nah, it is without a doubt the coolest place I've ever worked, attributed to the awesome people I work with and our regular customers. It feels good to be part of something growing that is actively working on harm reduction." Anyone who has met Cody knows why we are so happy to have him as a part of our crew, besides his epic taste in music and casual one liners, Cody lights up the shop with his presence and we couldn't be happier to introduce him to you guys today!
This is one of our most popular Starter Kits in store to date, with a 2300mah battery you don't have to worry about running out of life throughout the day, and with your tank submerged into your mod, it's not the heart attack it normally is when you drop it off the counter! This kit comes with everything you need to start vaping, inside the box you get your battery, a GS Air 2 tank and 510 magnet connection, a spare magnet connection with an ego thread, spare 0.75 GS Air coil and a charging cable. With it's sleek design the iStick Basic sits comfortably in your hand, but don't let that fool you! The Basic runs up to 25 watts with the recommended 0.75 GS Air coils. The one draw back (that doesn't count) is that the tank is connected to the mod with a magnet, and bits and pieces can build up in the bottom of the mod, preventing the magnets from making that connect. This is easily resolved by taking care of your mod, like any tool Vapes need to be cleaned and maintained properly to get the optimal use out of them. With this particular one, when you change your coil (every 3-4 weeks) be sure to clean out the magnets with a cotton bud or even just a wrapped up piece of handy towel. Personally, I like the iStick Basic, if I were to go back to the beginning, this would be the starter vape for me. The slightly restricted airflow suits me nicely, and you can restrict that further with the air flow ring on the bottom of the GS Air 2. I'm not a techy kind of person, I carry a notebook around with me and haven't yet progressed onto reading via Kindle so when I first got a vape and it had 5 different settings, with the temperature control, bypass modes and the 4 million (slight exaggeration) different coils that went with it, my head was reeling. Luckily I had the Vapourium crew to help me figure this out, but some people aren't so lucky. The simplicity of the iStick Basic is perfect for a first time user, one button, easy to fill tank and you're away laughing (Disclaimer: I don't recommend vaping while laughing, it hurts).
Have you been vaping for a while but terminology still escapes you?
Looking to upgrade? Just looking to understand what the hell these blog posts are about?
Let me break it down for you.
Back to the beginning, did you know Herbert A. Gilbert patented the idea in 1963?!
Why haven’t you heard of this before?
Because it was the 60’s, cigarettes were still advertised on TV, people smoked everywhere. Therefore Herbert’s ingenious design was abandonned.
The next stop in this timeline of events was 2006! Hon Lik released his own alternative to smoking, which consisted of an ultrasonic atomiser and a nicotine/PG (propylene glycol) solution in a plastic cartridge.
Now the ecigs you see today don’t feature ultrasonic atomisers but something else entirely. Brothers by the name of Sheikh invented the cartomiser! A heating element surrounded by poly fill, the poly fill would soak up the eliquid and the heating element would vaporise it, making the cartomiser the future of vaping.
Throughout 2000 ecigs were found in more and more places around the world, with such a simple concept people started experimenting with more power, bigger elements and thus the modded flashlight was born. First of it’s kind, it kept the same basic principles (battery, heating element and eliquid), and is the ancestor of the Mechanical Mods you see featured in so many brick and mortars today.
Once a culture started building around vaping, more and more people wanted to get involved with this more advanced side of vaping and we watched as the technology grew exponentially every month.
Vaping is just as much a hobby for some people as it is a method of quitting smoking for others, atomisers are customisable and regulated mods featuring more intricate circuit boards than my old Nokia.
Each week we’re going to look deeper and deeper into vaping, the culture around it and why it works.
Have you met the cutest little cloud chaser to date? Introducing the eLeaf iCare starter kit!
Although you may not be able to go back to back with a Nookie V3, the iCare can still pack a punch. Merely a day after getting them in store, I bought one. For $24.90, even if it wasn't exactly what I was looking for, what was there to loose? Looking back, there are no regrets. As small as a bic lighter, this is the perfect little stealth vape for a cheeky after work drink at your local bar, and I'm not the only one to think so. The iCare is taking the NZ vaping world by storm, with more and more showing up on popular Facebook groups like Vape NZ.
When you open the top of the iCare you can see a wee white bulb protruding from the unit (DO NOT TOUCH), and beside that you find the access to your coil and tank. ELeaf, staying true to form, have thought of everything with this device, the mouth piece also acts as a tool to open the 1.8ml tank. Originally I thought we would have some issue with the max VG juice we have in store, but unlike a lot of other small e-cig like devices I've come across the iCare takes it like a champ with no dry hits so far! With such a small device battery life can be a serious issue, but I've been using mine outside of work for almost a week now and have only had to charge it twice! Not bad for a 650mah capacity!
If you're looking for something to help a loved one quit smoking, or even just a little something to use when big clouds are not an option, the iCare will serve you well.
Innokin had been laying low for a bit and there hadn’t been much in the way of new developments coming from their camp. That was until they launched their popular Coolfire box mod. While this was a new design it lacked the power many vapers had come to expect from a box mod. Cue the Innokin Coolfire IV TC100.
First off, Innokin’s Coolfire IV TC100 looks awesome. With the option of 8 different colours, including a ludicrously shiney special edition Chrome, there’s a hue out there to match most tastes (my favourite being Rose Gold). The body of the Coolfire IV TC100 is similar to the rest of the range and features a nice rounded area that houses the in-built battery, with all the buttons along the side. The screen is an OLED display that shows all the standard information you expect on a vape. The screen isn’t impeded by your hand when you hold the vape and everything is placed ergonomically for comfort and ease of use.
What about the guts of the Coolfire IV TC100? Well at the core of the Coolfire IV TC100 is it’s hi-tech Aethon chip. The Aethon chip allows for an ultra stable boxmod coming with all the circuit protection modern vapes have, but with the addition of clear noise wave cancelling technology which means a cleaner output power. What this means for the user who has no knowledge of current and electricity is a shorter ramp up time. All idiosyncrasies aside and from my personal experience you can go from cold vape to 100watts through your RDA/Tank in about 0.2 seconds, a comparable power latency to the more known DNA200 chips. The battery inside the unit is a 3300mAh Li-ion battery, which can be charged at a whooping 2amp draw, giving you a full battery in about 1.5-2hours depending on your charging source.
I have been using my CoolfireIV TC100 for about a month now and have found it hard to fault. While the unit’s 100watt limit may leave some wanting I have found due to the ultra fast ramp up time this isn’t an issue. I started using the ISubV tank that it came with but as I’m not a tank guy I put my Mako Shorty RDA on it with a simple 26/32g Dual Clapton coil coming in at ~0.43ohms. Running this rig at around 75watts lasts me a day of solid vaping.
On the whole I find this boxmod to be a reliable and super well performing vape, with a good balance of usability and aesthetic. I’ll be hard pushed to find another regulated mod in this price range that delivers the same experience.