Glossary of e-Cig & Vape Terminology

APV – Advanced Personal Vaporizer usually denoting a complete kit or All-in-One

AIO – All-in-One is a design that fits the atomizer head within the mod, in other words, the tank is not detachable. These units hold more ejuice typically and are relatively less expensive than a 2 piece kit. Aspire Plato, Kanger Cupti and Joyetech eGo AIO are examples.

AFC – Air Flow Control: 2 styles typically, top or bottom. Bottom air is desirable because it pulls the air through the atomizer more efficiently, providing more flavor. The downside to bottom air is it is more prone to leaks. When considering a bottom air device search for reviews!

Atomizer – a basic atomizer is a coiled wire around a wick. The atomizer takes an input from the battery which heats the wire coil. A wick soaked in e juice will evaporate the juice creating vapor.

Atomizer coil head – also referred to as the head, coil, coil head, etc. The replacement coil containing a wick, wire coil and valves with a threaded connection to the tank, usually bought in packs of 5. Good for 2 to 4 weeks depending on frequency, type and blend of e juice and degree of power in volts or watts.

    • BDC – bottom dual coil
    • RBA – rebuildable atomizer
    • RDA – rebuildable drip atomizer

The e juice is dripped onto the wick through the top drip tip/mouthpiece

    • RTA –  rebuildable tank atomizer (doesn’t require dripping, stores the juice in the tank)

Some tanks have an optional “deck” where the DIY coils can be assembled and used in place of a pre-manufactured atomizer coil head

    • RDTA – rebuildable dripping tank atomizer

A combination tank and dripper. The tank provides storage and keeps the coils soaked like a regular tank but you can also drip from the top

AWG – American Wire Gauge an American standard of measurement for the diameter or wire gauge. The higher the gauge the thinner the wire and the greater the resistance

Battery Mod – in vaping, a mod is basically the battery housing (with or without the actual battery) and usually has some “smarts” in the form of tiny circuitry to set and read voltage, wattage, battery level, etc.

Direct Current (DC) – DC is employed in one button style vapes for simple use with no user intervention. The current is matched to the atomizer by the manufacturer for optimal performance.

Mechanical Mod – or Mech Mod is a type of DC. Basically, a machined metal sleeve to house the replaceable battery. Intended for experienced, technically inclined vapers.

Regulated Mod – works in Watts mode as well as VV. Regulated Mods have an integrated circuit to monitor resistance on the coil, and usually, employ safety features like over-charge protection. These are the most common mods available, whether it’s a DNA, YiHi or other chip design.

Clearomizer – a common name for the smaller tank and coil head popular on e-cigarettes such as the KangerTech T3D, ProTank or Aspire Nautilus. You can see the juice because the tank is clear!

Clapton Coil – If you immediately think of Eric Clapton, you’re not wrong. The Clapton Coil design looks like the end of a guitar string where the wire is round back around itself. The basic idea is that more wire equals greater resistance AND more surface area to heat and vaporize. Twists continue to evolve with Fused – wires are “fused” or melted together, Juggernaut – 2 Claptons fused to a flat kanthal, etc.

DNA – originally called the Darwin chipset, it became a standard for battery mod internal control of voltage created by Evolv. The name evolved to DNA and the current version is the DNA200.

DTL – Direct to Lung a vaping method of inhaling the vapor directly from the mouthpiece into the lungs

Glassomizer – same as a clearo or clearomizer

Kanthal – an alloy of iron, chromium, and aluminum (FeCrAl) designed for stability at high temperatures. Kanthal has been a mainstay in coil building due to its stability at high temperatures

mAh – milliamp hours a measurement of battery capacity in relation to time. Higher mAh means more button presses between charges

MTL – mouth to lung the most common form of inhalation

Ni – Nickel – used in Temp Control atomizer coils, lower resistance than Titanium

SS – Stainless Steel usually rated 316. The various numbers relate to the combination of other metals to create the alloy. According to Wikipedia 316 is a general grade for food processing, chemical storage and transport, textile dyeing equipment, cladding of nuclear fuel, and oil refining equipment as well as some medical implants.

Ti – Titanium – one of the hardest metals, used in temp control coil heads, higher resistance than Nickel

SSCOC – Stainless Steel Chinese Organic Cotton (substitute country of origin)

Li  – Lithium Ion – Best present-day material for holding an electrical charge. Most e-cigarette devices use cells such as the Samsung 18650

NotchCoil – basically a tiny metal cylinder with notches. Provides Clapton-style flavor, a consistent evenly heated surface area with zero ramp-up time.

PG – Propylene Glycol is a man-made substance designed to imitate vegetable glycerin. PG is of a thinner viscosity than VG and used as a food additive as well as being a main constituent of e-juice. High PG content in juice creates a stronger throat hit.

Squonk – A squonk or squonkbox is a bottom e-liquid delivery system with a squeeze bulb for shooting the ejuice onto the wick for a freshly soaked hit similar in effect to dripping

TC Mod – Temperature Control Mod

There are currently 3 leading designs of temperature control.

  • Some turn off power to the coil when it reaches a specified temperature (DNA40 and RDNA40)
  • Others choke back the power as the device reaches maximum temperature
  • Others are a combination of both
  • the two main systems of estimating the temperature at the coil are referred to in vaping terminology as TC Mode and TCR (temperature as a coefficient of resistance) which does the math based on the change in resistance to a particular metal as its temperature increases

Generally, but with some exceptions, kanthal wire coils are not used for temperature controlled vaping. Either Nickel (Ni), Stainless Steel (SS) or Titanium (Ti) are usually recommended

Throat Hit – The sensation when vapor hits the throat. Many vapers look to simulate the throat hit of cigarettes, while some prefer a smoother throat hit.

Vaporizer – dry herb or otherwise, a vaporizer is pretty much how it sounds. Anything from tobacco to healthy herbs can be vaporized for greater utilization and body absorption of the active ingredients, with no carbons. The oils or other constituents of a plant are heated to an evaporation point peculiar to that oil, which is then sucked into the mouth and lungs for almost instant absorption by the body

VG – Vegetable Glycerin is a naturally occurring liquid used in e-juice. Higher VG content creates a thicker juice and greater clouds but requires more power to vaporize and creates less of a “throat hit”. Coils degrade faster with a high VG content. Some people have an allergy to PG and therefore use high or 100% VG for vaping.

VV – Variable Voltage allows the user to adjust the voltage up or down

VW – Variable Wattage – smarter than VV because it takes the resistance of the coil into account and allows the user to adjust the watts