Beginner’s Guide to Atomizers, Coils and Wicks

Beginner’s Guide to Atomizers, Coils and Wicks

January 28, 2018

You’re on the quest for bigger vapor, and you’ve decided that it’s time to start learning about how to build your own atomizer coils. Congratulations! Learning to use a rebuildable atomizer is one of the steps on the road toward becoming a vaping expert. Regardless of whether you ultimately decide to use a rebuildable atomizer full time or go back to using sub-ohm tanks, learning to build your own coils can teach you valuable information about atomizer coil design.

 

Things You’ll Need

  • Rebuildable atomizer: The two-post “Velocity” build deck is great for beginners.
  • Resistance meter: Screw in the completed atomizer to check its resistance. You’ll need to check the resistance every time you rebuild your atomizer.
  • Wire cutters: Wire cutters make it easy to trim wires neatly.
  • Coil jig: A coil jig makes it easy to wrap perfect coils.
  • Ceramic tweezers: Tweezers help you adjust hot coils without burning your hands.
  • Resistance Wire: Kanthal is the best option for beginners.
  • Wick material: Cotton is the best option for beginners.

 

Wire Types for Atomizers

Kanthal is the standard resistance wire that’s used in most pre-built atomizer coils. It’s also the most popular wire material among those who build their own coils. Kanthal is easy to work with, and kanthal coils work on any e-cigarette. If you have an e-cigarette that supports temperature control operation, you may eventually want to try building coils made from nickel or titanium. In the beginning, though, we suggest using kanthal because some people find it difficult to make coils from nickel and titanium.

 

Wick Types for Atomizers

Like kanthal, cotton is inexpensive and easy to work with. Cotton is also popular because it imparts a neutral flavor to e-liquid. While other wick materials are also popular, some people have trouble getting used to the flavors that alternative wicks impart. Some of the most popular alternative wick materials for vaping include silica, rayon, hemp and ceramic. Some alternative materials are popular because they wick e-liquid more efficiently than cotton. Others are popular because they don’t burn as easily as cotton. If you get occasional dry hits because you chain vape -- or you singe your wick at times because you forget to refill your tank or atomizer -- you may ultimately prefer a wick material other than cotton. Cotton is best, though, when you’re new to rebuildable atomizers.

 

Building Your First Atomizer Coil

Wrap the Coils

To start building an atomizer coil, screw your rebuildable atomizer into your resistance tester and cut two portions of wire with roughly equal lengths. Use your coil jig to wrap two coils. Use the same post -- and the same number of turns -- when wrapping the coils. The two coils should match each other almost perfectly.

 

Install the Coils

Thread the coils through the holes in your atomizer’s posts. If you’re using a Velocity deck, the posts will have two holes each. Insert the coils so that they face opposite sides. One of the coil’s leads should go into the low hole on one post, and the other lead should go into the high hole on the other post. Keeping the coils as identical in length as possible, tighten down the atomizer’s four screws. Trim the wires with your wire cutters.

 

Test and Adjust the Coils

Turn your resistance meter on to check the resistance of your atomizer. If the resistance meter detects a short, you’ve made a mistake and should start over. Otherwise, move the atomizer to your vaping device and set the wattage to a conservative level. Fire the atomizer briefly. The coils should glow from the middle to the outside at an even brightness. If you see a hot spot, adjust the coils with your tweezers and confirm that you’ve tightened the screws fully. Continue adjusting and pulsing the coils until they glow evenly.

 

Wick the Coils

Tear off two strips of cotton. Roll a strip between your finger and thumb. Thread the strip through the middle of one of the atomizer’s coils. Choosing the right amount of cotton to use is a challenge. You want to use enough cotton to ensure that the coils remain wet, but don’t use so much cotton that you struggle to get your strips through the coils. Trim the ends of the wicks, and push the remaining cotton under the coils. Wet the atomizer thoroughly with e-liquid before vaping with it.

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Vaping Beginner Guides

Sub-Ohm Tanks vs. Rebuildable Atomizers
Sub-Ohm Tanks vs. Rebuildable Atomizers

January 28, 2018

Whether you’re looking for the tastiest clouds or the biggest ones, you’re going to end up using a sub-ohm tank or a rebuildable atomizer. In this article, we’ll compare the two most popular types of e-cigarette attachments.

Read More

Beginner’s Guide to Sub-Ohm Vaping
Beginner’s Guide to Sub-Ohm Vaping

January 28, 2018

Getting bolder flavor and bigger vapor clouds is a vapers dream. Here's how to do it.

Read More

Is a Mechanical Mod Right for You?
Is a Mechanical Mod Right for You?

January 28, 2018

Are you ready to take your vaping to the next level? If you are, a mechanical mod may be the right choice for you. 

Read More