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It’s a hot topic, the talk of the town, but what are the basics of vaping?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock (or maybe just don’t visit the news sites covering it), then you might be unversed in the nuances and debate surrounding vaping. You might not even know what it even is. Whether you’re thinking of getting into vaping or perhaps just interested in learning about it due to the innovative technology that goes into making a vape device, then it’s best to get to grips with what it is.

What is a vape device?

A vape device is an alternative to tobacco smoking at its very essence. Using heat not burn technology, it lets the user inhale nicotine infused water vapour using electricity rather than fire. It is the burning of tobacco which leads to the harm inflicted by tobacco. The chemicals released include cyanide and many carcinogens, up to 40 to be precise, as well as 360 other dangerous chemicals. Using the vape device and the many flavours which come with it means that you bypass these cancer and emphysema causing dangers, the device heating up water vapour which has had flavour added to it to create a versatile and satisfying aerosol which has a balance of nicotine and a range of vegetable glycerine and propylene glycol mixes.

The history of vaping

Whilst the concept of an electronic cigarette was explored as far back as the 1920’s, it wasn’t until 1965 that ex US air force pilot Herbert A. Gilbert came up with a real design. After some toing and froing through the 80’s and 90’s, the idea failed to be commercialised, but fortunes would change in the mid noughties. The design was perfected and built upon by Chinese pharmacist Hon Lik who would go on to create the modern day vape device and perfect it to the point that we see today. It is also of note that Hon Lik is now developing a form of e-hookah pipe, which will be marketed to the African and Middle-Eastern markets.

What are the different parts of a vape device?

Vape devices, though differing in aesthetic look and the way they function, all have a similar build and interior components. The vape devices many incarnations may have a range of differing shapes and sizes to it, but it will always have the following components.


Since all vape devices are electronic in their running, all will have a battery pack. Most vape devices will r upon a form of 18650 batteries and will differ, with some being disposable and some being rechargeable or replaceable. Disposable vape devices with batteries means that once the battery runs out, you must throw away the device. With rechargeable or replaceable batteries, you’ll be able to use a charging kit to keep your vape device going.

Atomiser and cleaormiser

The atomiser is surrounded by wicking cotton and is the metal element within your vape device which is heated up by the battery. This part of the vape device heats up and in turn heats the cotton around it which is saturated with vape juice. This then leads to the e juice being heated up and inhaled.


The coil is the metal wire which connects the battery to the atomisers. It needs to be a good electrical conductor due to the need to heat up the e juice in the atomiser.


This is the part of the vape device which your mouth inhales form. These devices can be made from a range of different materials and must be incredibly durable.


Although some dripper devices don’t have a tank, preferring to have vape juice siphoned directly on to the vape device atomiser, most devices have a storage compartment into which you siphon the vape juice before it is heated up.

What are the different types of vape devices?

There are three generations of vape devices so far, all with their own specific designs.


Cigalikes were the first generation of vape devices and were designed to mimic the effects of smoking cigarettes. These devices look like cigarettes, were often disposable and usually restricted to only tobacco and menthol flavours

Vape pens

The second generation took the cigalike and added new features including a tank and rechargeable USB ports. On top of this, you could also find temperature control settings and a larger yet still slim design.


Vape mods are the most recent addition to the vaping family. Vape Mods often consist of replaceable internal components and are also far more powerful. These devices are some of the most fun out there and have a great range of sub ohm vaping opportunities and DIY flexibility. These devices should be handled with caution however, they being best reserved for vaping pros.


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