By Gareth Witty, Thursday, 04 February 2021
It has been said that 2021 will be the year of the pod style of vaping (or electronic cigarette) from many sources. I have been vaping since 2008 where I started with cig-a-like, mouth to lung kits that had 0.7ml capacity and 180mah batteries. These kits would look very much like a normal cigarette, but the tip would glow blue or even red on some early kits. My first decent style of this product came from E-cigarette Direct. You can still even today by this product, alas the kit has gone but the batteries and cartridges are still avalible.
In fact, not that much difference from today’s pod mods in terms of relative size and function, well there is much more of a difference and I will try and explain why. Today’s kits have a lot more up to date technology and far more modern and efficient design, but they work the same as our old friends from 2008. They have become a little bigger for more battery life and eliquid capacity usually 2mls.
There seems to be two main shapes, round and cigar like and square box like designs. Some are flattened box shapes, and it seems many manufactures now have a variety of shapes and sizes for this area. My advice here would be to see the devices in your local vape shop, you may be lucky and be able to try the devices before you buy. If the devices are more comfortable in the hand and fits easily into the pocket, then you are halfway there. You will want something that is going to fit your lifestyle and even workspace. If it is too bulky, then you may not carry it around.
There are currently three styles of pods on the market, prefilled disposables, where one the tank is empty you throw it away and break out a new one. These are great for a smoker who wants to try vaping, as they are cheap to start with and it will allow you to see if vaping is for you.
The next is AIO or All in One, this is a larger device where the tank fits into the device and tends to leave the mouthpiece exposed for use, some may even come with a cap as well. These come in disposable tank versions and refillable tank versions with a small push to fill hole or a rubber clip that you remove to fill.
The last one is a kit where the device and tank are all removable. These often use screw on connector called a 510 which allows the tank to be removed in one whole unit and then screwed onto a new device. These are still popular even today and most devices back in the day where made this way.
Of course, the devices can come in all shapes and functions around this area of Pod Mod, this means there are units to fit all lifestyles. Small devices are great for “stealth vaping” where you can vape indiscreetly, or much larger Pod Mods where you enjoy the cloudier vape. The larger devices are good for everyday use and will require recharging less often. Currently my main vape is the Aspire Nautilus Prime which is a 2000mah battery and uses the very popular Nautilus Coils and I use this around the house and car.
For eliquid I would go with a 20mg Nic Salt or 18mg normal nicotine to start. Starting too low with make you vape more, rather than less. Most Pod Mods use the 50/50 PG VG ratio of eliquid. Thicker eliquids at a 70/30 VG/PG are more for bigger clouds and most pod mods have smaller coils and lower wattage output. Starting too low with make you vape more, rather than less.
Hang on I hear you cry, what’s Nic Salt? Well one of the reasons for pod mods is that Nic Salt, a type of nicotine blend that uses a crystalline based nicotine) has hit the market. This used to create a eliquid that has a high milligram strength but has a much smoother hit rather than the harsher hit from a normal nicotine based liquid.
The other style of pod is a refillable pod, much like the disposables but you can refill with your choice of flavour or nicotine strength. This means you will have a much larger flavours and with time bring the strength of the eliquid down to slowly wean yourself off the nicotine.
Also, there are pod tanks where you can change the coil itself, these tend to be push in fits which make it easier to replace the coil, but some still do screw in.
Some pod device can also be inhale activated or may have a button to press. The technology of the auto draw as it is called has come a long way and this also adds an element of safety to these pods. The button style can sometimes be activated in the pocket or handbag unless you lock them. An auto draw device has no such problem.
My current “Stealth Mod” is the tiny Aspire Minican, this is a tiny 350mah device with disposable tanks but can be filled with the eliquid of my choice. It can fit into a shirt pocket and I use mine for work.
While the range of pod style mods is now exceptionally large, this does allow the user to find a size and design that works for them. I know of many “cloud chasers” and users who build on RDA or Rebuildable Dripping Atomisers but even they will often carry a pod mod for work or play. They are simple, effective and make life much easier for news vapers and are a great place to start.