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How to Build an RDA Coil

Getting into rebuilding seems like a huge step to take. Instead of simply replacing pre-made atomizer heads, you have to take a more hands-on approach, and that means tackling some initially scary-looking devices head on. So how do you build a coil for you new rebuildable dripping atomizer (RDA)? What do the posts do? What do you need to get started? Here’s everything you need to know to get started building an RDA coil.

Anatomy of an RDA

RDAs all have a very similar layout. Under the top cap (the metallic outer cover on the atomizer), you’ll see an array of posts, usually with screws in the top and holes through their center. The central post is the positive connection, and the outer posts (sometimes there’s just one) are the negative connections. Connecting the positive and negative posts with a coil allows current to flow when you press the fire button, and that’s what vaporizes your e-juice.

The remainder of the RDA doesn’t take much explaining. At the bottom of the posts, the “juice well” is surrounded by the lower metallic lip of the device, enabling it to hold more ecig juice than your wick could soak up alone. The only other thing you really have to consider are air-holes: just make sure your air-hole is right next to your coil when you’ve built it and you’re good to go. Depending on your device, it might have an option to close off some air-holes, but this is normally simple enough to operate.

What You Need to Build an RDA Coil

You’ll need a few things to get started with rebuilding. First, ensure you’ve got a supply of kanthal or nichrome wire. The general rule is: the thicker the wire (lower American Wire Gauge – AWG – number) the lower the resistance. As a general rule, 28 to 32 AWG wire is a good place to start. If you want to build a micro-coil (recommended for performance, but a little more difficult to build), choose a lower-gauge wire (28 AWG, for example), but for a standard coil higher gauges ensure you end up with a high enough resistance.

You’ll also need some wick material. There are quite a few options here, but for affordability, flavor and wicking ability, 100 % organic cotton balls are probably the best way to go. You should boil them in water and let them dry out before using to remove any unwanted residue from manufacturing (this is probably not strictly necessary, but since you’re inhaling from it, it’s better to be safe).

Finally, a few tools are essential for getting the process completed smoothly:

  • A screwdriver. You’ll need something to loosen and tighten up the post screws, and if you get a precision screwdriver set, you can use one as a guide for building your coil too.
  • Some tweezers or pliers. If you’re building a micro-coil, tweezers or pliers are essential for compressing it and getting all of the wires making contact with each other.
  • Wire cutters, scissors or nail clippers. You’ll need something to snip your resistance wire and wicks with to keep everything neat. Nail clippers are pretty good for this, but anything suitable will do the job.
  • Ohm reader, multimeter or a VV/VW mod with resistance checker. It’s good practice to check the resistance of your builds before you fire them. While most modern devices can take any reasonable resistance (and will refuse to fire anything below around 0.2 ohms), this is another area where it’s better to stay safe.

Building Your RDA Coil

  • Step 1: Snip yourself off a generous amount of wire. Kanthal is cheap, so don’t skimp on the length: go for around four inches so you have plenty to work with. It’s better to cut too much than not enough.
  • Step 2: Choose a precision screwdriver, drill bit or anything else cylindrical and relatively small in diameter (anything 1/8 inch down to 1/16 inch works well) as a guide for building your coil. This helps to keep everything steady as you build and ensure you have a coil with a uniform diameter.
  • Step 3: Hold your wire against your guide in preparation for wrapping. Don’t start right at the end of the wire – leave an inch or so spare, with the remaining wire ready to be wrapped.
  • Step 4: Start wrapping your coil. Holding the guide steady with one hand (and keeping your wire in place), start to wrap the wire around the guide, keeping it taut as you do. For standard coils, the aim is to keep each successive wrap quite close together but with even spacing between them. For micro-coils, the aim is to get each successive wrap as close to the previous one as possible (without overlapping), taking it slowly if you need to so the positioning is right.
  • Step 5: Keep wrapping your coil and count the number of turns as you do. The more wraps you do, the higher your resulting resistance. Although low resistance is often the goal for rebuilders, if it’s your first time there’s no need to worry about this so much. For standard coils, five wraps is standard. For micro-coils do around 9 or 10 wraps and your resulting resistance will be somewhere between 1.5 and 2 ohms.
  • Step 6: When you finish, the end of the wire will start to unwrap a little, so give it an extra half-turn before letting go. The aim is for both of the wire-ends to be pointing in the same direction.
  • Step 7: Look at your coil. For standard coils, you’re looking for even spacing between each wrap – you can adjust any wraps that look a little uneven. If you’re going for a micro-coil, there will probably be several visible gaps between the successive wraps at this stage: this is OK, but if you can pinch them closer together, it will make things easier a little later.
  • Step 8: Unscrew the positive and one of the negative posts on your RDA. This will reveal the holes through the center of the posts, and this is where you have to thread the ends of your wire. Keep your coil on your guide as you connect it: this will make it easier to position correctly. It’s a little easier to get both ends through the holes if they’re slightly different lengths (then you can focus on one at a time rather than both together), so trim one of the ends if needed.
  • Step 9: Position your coil so it doesn’t touch the posts, leaving some space between it and the sides of your atomizer. If your coil touches the body of the atomizer or a post, this can create a short circuit and cause problems when you fire your device. When everything is positioned correctly, tighten up your post screws and remove your guide.
  • Step 10: Test your resistance. If you have a 510-threaded ohm reader, you can do this easily by screwing your atomizer in place and checking it, or you can just attach it to a mod with a resistance checker. It doesn’t really matter if your resistance is higher or lower than what you were shooting for, as long as it isn’t way too high or low.
  • Step 11: Test-fire your coil. You’re looking for an even glow, ordinarily starting in the center and spreading out as you continue firing. For ordinary coils, if your spacing is even, it should all work as intended, and if not, use some tweezers to re-position any wraps not heating up. When it heats evenly, you can move on to step 14. If you’re building a micro-coil, at this point you’ll likely notice that not all of the wraps heat evenly – this will change after you’ve compressed the coil with tweezers.
  • Step 12: For micro coils only: fire your coil five seconds or so, so it glows red and gets hot, and be ready with tweezers. After you’ve released the fire button, compress the coil from either end using your tweezers, just hard enough so the wraps all make contact with each other. Hold it in this position for five to ten seconds.
  • Step 13: For micro coils only: Test-fire your coil again, looking for an even glow. The aim is for the glowing to start in the center of the coil and gradually spread to the outer ends. If it still heats unevenly or it still looks like some of the wraps aren’t making good contact with each other, heat and compress the coil again, as in the previous step.
  • Step 14: When your coil is heating up like it should, you can snip the free ends of wire at the opposite side of the posts. It’s better to do this as close to the post as you can, but don’t worry if you leave a little bit poking through. As long as they aren’t touching the posts, the base of the atomizer, each other or the sides of the atomizer you won’t get a short.
  • Step 15: Insert your wick. If you’re using cotton balls, pinch a long section off the bulk of the ball. Try to make it so the diameter of the section you remove is a little bigger than your coil, and avoid pulling off a very tightly packed section. It might take a bit of trial and error to get this right, but thankfully cotton is cheap.
  • Step 16: Twist one end of the cotton in your fingers. This will create a thin “sharper” end you can thread through the coil more easily. Poke your cotton through the middle of your coil and pull the end from the opposite side. Pull the wick through as much as you can, being wary of forcing it too much and misshaping your coil in the process: if you encounter resistance, pull it back out, make your wick a bit thinner and try again.
  • Step 17: Snip off any excess cotton. There’s no hard and fast rule, but you’ll probably have too much cotton when you first pull it through, so snip off the ends (using the edges of your atomizer as a guide is a useful tip). You can now move both ends of the wick onto the base of the atomizer, ready to soak up juice.
  • Step 18: Drip some vape juice onto your wick (making sure it’s thoroughly soaked) and get ready to vape. You can test-fire when you’ve soaked the wick with best tobacco e-liquid to watch your new coil produce its first vapor – not necessary, but a proud moment you should savor.
  • Step 19: Replace the top cap and vape away!

Conclusion

This is just a basic guide to getting your first coil built: there is a lot more to explore, from dual coils to vertical coils, Clapton coils and much more. The good news is that what you’ve just done represents the core skill that you can continue to develop as you get used to rebuilding. Even if you struggled this time, don’t worry about it! We’ve all been there, and the more you practice, the easier it gets.

Resources:

Olympia Vapor Works: 8 Coil Building Guides for New Vapers

Vape Core: The Art of the Micro Coil: A Beginners Guide to Coiling an RBA

Steam Engine: Coil Wrapping (calculator)

Michael Grey
Find Me Here

Michael Grey

With a passion to educate through my writings and a passion to help others, I found my place here at Black Note. Being that I am a former smoker who quit smoking because of vaping, I knew I could help others do the same. Working for Black Note is a true blessing. Not only do I help educate vapers on a daily basis through my writings, but I am also enjoying the benefits of working with an amazing team and sharing an authentic tobacco solution with the vaping community.
Michael Grey
Find Me Here

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What is E-Juice?

E-juice, also known as e-liquid or vaping liquid, is the liquid that’s placed in the vaping device and subsequently atomized into vapor. When you go to buy e-juice, you’ll notice it contains a mix of several ingredients. These typically include vegetable glycerin (VG), propylene glycol (PG), some type of flavoring, and nicotine.

VG and PG form the base of the e-liquid. VG is a component used in food and personal care products; its role in e-liquid is to create a thick, dense vapor. PG is another popular solvent used in a variety of everyday items. It carries the e-liquid flavor, provides the “throat hit,” and enhances the vaping liquid’s ability to soak into wicks or cartomizer materials.

Nicotine is an optional ingredient, often available in different levels. E-juice also contains some type of flavoring.

Black Note leads the pack of tobacco vaping liquid by using only natural flavoring – extract from real tobacco leaves to produce real tobacco taste. When you go to buy e-juice from other companies, you may find any number of chemicals used to create synthetic flavors that include fake strawberry, manufactured vanilla, and even man-made tobacco flavors.

If your aim when you buy e-liquid is to experience the subtle nuances, genuine flair and authentic taste of real tobacco, then you’ll be on the mark if you buy e-juice from the Black Note lineup.

Best E-Juice

When you’re going to buy e-liquid, it’s only natural you’ll want the best e-liquid. But what, exactly, does it “best e-juice” mean? We’ll tell you.

For starters, you’ll want an e-juice that doesn’t contain all kinds of strange chemicals and concoctions that you can’t even pronounce. True, even the best e-liquid will contain vegetable glycerin (VG) and proplene glycol (PG), which serve as the base of e-juice, but you don’t necessarily need a host of other chemical compounds.

The best e-juice will stick to natural ingredients, like real tobacco extract, rather than rely on synthetic flavorings, colorings and other additives. Diacetyl is one of those synthetic ingredients that has gotten a pretty bad rap, although its use is not all that uncommon for producing sweet e juice flavors.

Definitely read the ingredient list before you buy e-juice to ensure you recognize what’s on it. Better yet, see if the e-juice company offers a lab report to confirm what’s actually inside the e-liquid.

In addition to having as few chemical ingredients as possible, the best e-juice will have an amazing taste. For those who enjoy authenticity over imitation, the most amazing taste is the most natural taste, especially when it comes to tobacco. Since Black Note uses real extract from tobacco leaves, we not only avoid all those weird chemical flavorings, but we also produce the most authentic experience: tobacco vaping liquid that actually tastes like tobacco.

Best E-Liquid on the Market

Anyone looking for the best e-liquid on the market need look no further than Black Note. Black Note tobacco vaping liquid ranks as the best e-juice across the board in every category, starting with the taste.

Black Note’s main claim to fame is producing a tobacco vaping liquid that actually tastes like real tobacco. That because we use real tobacco extract, not chemicals, to create the best e-juice tobacco flavor. Using extract from real tobacco leaves retains tobacco’s nuances and flavor notes, giving you the most authentic and multi-faceted tobacco experience.

In addition to being the best e-juice for tobacco taste, Black Note also has the best e-liquid manufacturing process. We spent years researching and testing various production methods, and finally landed on one that we believe is absolutely perfect.

It starts with growing carefully selected tobacco seeds, followed by an equally precise of steps that include an extensive natural extraction process. Even our bottling and packaging is done with the utmost care, using recycled and recyclable packaging materials to ensure our products are as earth-friendly as they are vapor-friendly.

One more category where Black Note ranks as the best e-liquid is with the value. Every order comes with free domestic shipping, one-to-three day domestic shipping guarantee, and a 90-day, money-back satisfaction guarantee. If you’re not happy for any reason, or don’t agree we’re the best e-juice on the market, send it back on us and we’ll refund your money.

Vape Juice Ingredients

Vape juice ingredients can be pretty straightforward – or not. At the very least, most vape juice contains propylene glycol (PG), vegetable glycerin (VG), and some type of flavoring. Nicotine has largely become an optional ingredient that can be included at varying levels or left out altogether.

Vegetable glycerin (VG) and propylene glycol (PG) are usually the two main ingredients that make up the base of most vape juice.

VG is a plant-based substance with the ability to produce a dense, thick vapor. PG is an additive found in many food items and certain medicines. It carries the flavoring, provides the “throat hit” and enhances the vape juice’s ability to soak into the wicking materials.

Nicotine levels can vary, as can ingredients that make up the flavorings. The components that make up vape juice flavoring are where ingredients can get rather complicated.

Vape juice that relies on artificial flavorings can contain any number of extraneous chemicals and other additives, whatever it takes to recreate the flavor the ecig juice is going for.

Black Note uses only natural flavorings: extract from real tobacco leaves. That keeps our ingredient list incredibly simple, backed by a lab report to prove it. You won’t find any strange chemical concoctions used to produce our tobacco flavor, just real tobacco extract that delivers a real tobacco experience.

What is the Best Flavor for Ecig Juice?

From strawberry shortcake to banana rum, ecig juice comes in tons of flavors. While folks can debate and discuss all the fruity, sweet or food-like flavors all day long, the best flavor for e-cig liquid is straight-up tobacco.

Why? Vaping was originally created as an alternative for traditional cigarettes, mainly for those who enjoy the taste of tobacco. And when you can find an e-cig liquid that is able to recreate tobacco’s full-bodied yet delicate flavor notes and nuances, but without the harmful chemicals found in cigarettes, then you’ve found the best ecig juice.

Recreating tobacco’s complex flavor isn’t easy, especially when it’s attempted with artificial ingredients. That’s why Black Note sticks to the real thing, extracting the essence of real tobacco leaves to flavor our vaping liquid. Not only does this avoid the harmful chemicals in cigarettes, but it also eliminates the flavoring chemicals found in many ecig juices. The end result is real tobacco taste, an authentic tobacco experience and the best flavor for ecig juice you can find.

Notice also we said the best e-cig flavor was straight-up tobacco, not plain old tobacco. Black Note’s real tobacco vaping liquid happens to come in a variety of different blends, from the light and airy to the peppery and robust. Not all tobacco is created equal, and different blends capture the specialized subtleties that make each tobacco unique.

Best Sweet Tobacco E-Juice

When it comes to sweet tobacco e-juice, your options can be broken down into two categories.

The first category contains tobacco e-juice that overlays the tobacco flavor with artificial chocolate, caramel, vanilla, fruity or other dessert-like flavorings. We wouldn’t classify any such flavors as the best tobacco e liquid, simply because they typically use chemicals and other artificial ingredients to create the tobacco taste, the sweet taste, or both.

The second category of sweet tobacco e-juice is where you’ll find the best tobacco e-liquid, sweet or otherwise. This category contains vaping liquid created using only natural flavorings, which is exactly where Black Note fits in. Instead of concocting flavors using synthetic ingredients, Black Note uses an extensive extraction process that slowly and deliberately extracts the tobacco essence from real tobacco leaves.

The result is the best tobacco e-juice: tobacco vaping liquid that actually tastes like real tobacco. And if you’re going for the best sweet tobacco e liquid, we have a few tobacco blends that offer varying levels of sweetness.

Prelude is our sweetest tobacco e-liquid, containing golden Virginia tobacco. Made from fire-cured dark Virginia tobacco, Sonata is our Cavendish blend with a mildly sweet and nutty flavor. Solo is our menthol blend, giving you a semi-sweet minty taste created from natural menthol crystals extract from dried mint leaves.

For the best tobacco e-liquid that’s naturally sweet and remarkably delicious, Black Note is at your service.

WARNING: Black Note products are not smoking cessation products and have not been tested as such. Black Note products are intended for use by adults of legal smoking age (21 or older in California), and not by children or women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Black Note products contain nicotine, a chemical known to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. Ingestion of the non-vaporized concentrated ingredients can be poisonous. Keep out of reach of children and pets. For immediate advice, contact poison control center: (800) 222-1222