The Beginners Guide To VapingPaul Davies
We made this guide to vaping as we wanted to cover the most asked questions from new vapers. The odds are, you’ve heard the term “vaping”, and the odds are even greater that you’ve heard of electronic cigarettes and seen them in use. Perhaps you’re a smoker who is eager to know all about this healthier new trend, or perhaps you have no interest in smoking whatsoever and are just curious as to what it all means – or, of course, you may be sceptical about the whole thing and wanting to know more about it. The point of this guide is to help explain the ins and outs of vaping, the technology and liquid behind it, and how it has helped weave so many people away from the horrors of smoking.
What Is Vaping?
In its simplest form, vaping is the means in which a liquid is heated up, producing vapour, which is then inhaled and exhaled by the user (the vaper). You could, in a sense, imagine this to be the same process in which a kettle is boiled, only the steam is directly inhaled.
The term itself derives from the word vapour, while a vaper is simply the person who enjoys the inhale.
Of course, a vaper doesn’t use a kettle to inhale their vapour – they use a device called an e-cigarette. The vapour itself is produced by heating a liquid, known as an e-liquid, which consists of some basic chemical compounds and a form of flavouring, and sometimes nicotine.
The Electronic Cigarette
First and foremost, vaping wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the invention of the electronic cigarette. Although the first prototype for such a device can be traced back to an American inventor, Herbert A. Gilbert, in 1963, the modern form of the device, that we see today, was invented in 2003 by a Chinese pharmacist called Hon Lik. It is this device that has gained ground over recent years, to such an extent that it can be spotted, in one form or another, almost everywhere we venture.
How The E-Cig Works
An electronic cigarette consists of three main components.
Rather obviously, an e-cig needs a power source. The specific type of battery, however, varies from device to device, but they all serve the same purpose – they provide power.
The tank serves a dual purpose – it is a chamber that holds the liquid that is to be vaporised, and is also home to the coil system.
The coil is packed with an absorbent material – often organic cotton – that soaks up the e-liquid via inlet holes on its side. Inside of the coil is a wire, which becomes heated when required.
How They Interact
The three components work in union with each other. When device is activated, the battery talks to the coil, and the wire within the coil is heated. This allows for the liquid that has been absorbed by the wick to be vaporised, created the vapour, or what is commonly called cloud. More liquid is then absorbed by the wick and the entire process can be repeated.
Variations In E-cigs
There are many, many different types and models of e-cigs in the market. Originally, the weird and wonderful designs took a while to catch on, as smokers were only really comfortable with holding something that resembled the traditional tobacco smoke, but as time went by, the other devices were soon recognised as being far superior.
These devices closely resemble a cigarette. They consist of the same basic set-up as above, but – typically – contain a disposable cartridge, rather than a tank and are activated by simply inhaling on the device. This method makes for a rather fine starting point for a smoker making those first steps into vaping.
E-cigs that come with tanks open a whole new world up, as various types of e-liquids can be added to the chamber. These are the most common types of e-cigs and come in many different styles and varieties. One of the most common designs is the pen-style e-cig – a battery and tank, cylinder-like in build. Others, often called mods, have square battery components and a tank fitted above.
The designs are vast, and made to suit different vaping needs, from beginners to the very advanced vaper.
What Are The Different Types Of E-liquid
E-liquid is the substance that is added to the tank in order to be vaporised. It is, in many ways, what makes an e-cigarette and vaping such a popular trend, due to the wealth of flavours available. No matter what your taste may be, you can rest assured that there will be an e-liquid made to satisfy that taste.
The vapour produced by the e-liquid is what vapers commonly call the cloud. And this cloud can sometimes be scented with the e-liquid flavours, and other times not.
The ingredients in an e-liquid are generally the same, from bottle to bottle, with variations in such content to suit personal needs. The only major change is the flavour ingredients, which obviously vary – a strawberry juice cannot contain the same ingredients as a coconut juice, as an basic example.
However, the four main ingredients are listed below:
Most often just referred to as PG, within the vaping community, this ingredient is used as a preservative and as a chemical that can easily be vaporised under the minimal amount of temperature. It is found in many household produce, and is consumed, by many, on a regular basis. The chemical has been found to be safe for human consumption by many foundations. High PG content is known to produce a better, and more realistic throat hit, emulating the hit found by smoking a cigarette.
Another common preservative used in every produce is Vegetable Glycerin, and this is also used in e-liquid to help keep the flavours intact. VG may also be used as an alternative to PG, in certain cases where a vaper may be allergic to PG content. Higher VG contents may fail to produce the desired throat hit to the newcomer, but is used for the more seasoned vaper to create greater amounts of cloud.
The flavouring content of an e-liquid varies immensely. It is this particular property that makes a flavour unique, and what a vaper finds enjoyable. All manner of flavours have been created, from tobacco and menthol flavours to fruity and citric blends. All flavours are made from food grade standards.
When somebody decides to try vaping instead of smoking, it is the nicotine content that helps make the transition all the more easy. And, unlike cigarettes, e-liquid juices can have their levels of nicotine gradually reduced over time, perhaps even to the point that a vaper is on a zero nicotine content and ready to stop altogether.
While vaping can be done in many different ways, there are only two definite methods. People enjoy their vape in a way that suits them, and they can modify this vape in various ways, by changing the settings and airflow system of their device. Vaping is a personal thing, and no one person vapes in the same way as the next person.
Mouth To Lung
This is the most common method for the first time vaper, as it so closely resembles the way in which a traditional cigarette is smoked. The vapour is pulled from the e-cig, into the mouth, and then inhaled and exhaled. Most of the original devices, and the pen-style kits, have this method in mind, and all cig-alikes are built to workin this way.
Direct To Lung
Direct to lung vaping is considered a more advanced form of vaping, and often requires more specialised kit and coils in order to be achieved. With direct to lung vaping, the cloud is pulled directly into the lungs, and exhaled, producing much greater volumes of vapour compared to direct to lung.
As stated, vaping is all about vapour.
It is a trend that, most commonly, helps a smoker ditch the dreaded tobacco products and move themselves into a healthier lifestyle. There are, of course, other aids available to do this, but none quite compare to what can be accomplished with an electronic cigarette.
That concludes part one of our beginners guide to vaping, stay tuned for part 2 coming soon!