What is An E-Cig Mod?

Simply stated, an e-cig mod is an e-cigarette in which a component has been modified from the standard version. In practice the component that is modified is the battery. An e-cig mod enables the advanced vaper to customize his experience to his liking. Generally vapers who like thicker vapors go for these devices.

There are many ways to classify mods. The most common is advanced personal vaporizers and mechanical mods, based on the mechanism of operation. These will be discussed in detail shortly. Another way to classify mods is on the basis of looks and the common categories are tubular and boxy. However, some of the latest hand crafted mods are neither tubular nor boxy.

Advanced Personal Vaporizers (APVs)

APVs use electronic circuitry to vary and control the power output to the heating element. More power results in stronger heating, more vaporization and thicker vapor. This eliminates the need to change the atomizer or electronic cigarette when the user wants to change the intensity of the vapor. The latest and the more expensive APVs build in other functions as well.

Usually the APVs have a knob that can be rotated to set the power (or voltage) to the desired level. A typical wattage range would be 6 watts to 11 watts (or a voltage range would be 3.3 volts to 5.0 volts). There would be upper limits based on the resistance of the heater filament and safety requirements. The required values, such as battery level and power setting are displayed on a LED screen built in on the surface of the e-cig mod. The add-on features include resistance checking, puff counter, activation cut off and air flow detector. Most mods use batteries that do not need frequent charging and can easily provide two days of uninterrupted vaping. Many of them include a USB port for updating the device’s internal programming to add new features via software. The USB port can be used to charge cell phones and MP3s.

Mechanical Mods

The term mechanical mod is somewhat of a misnomer. Mechanical mods use batteries to supply electric current to the heating element in the atomizer. There are no electronic components in the device.  The switches that complete the circuit to provide power to the heating element function through mechanical spring element contact instead of magnetic contact. As a result mechanical mods are much simpler devices. They do not have voltage regulators or LED displays or the other functionalities of APVs. One of the biggest disadvantages of mechanical mods is that the power output to the atomizer keeps decreasing as the battery drains.

There was a time when mechanical mods were obsolete. But they have been reintroduced for some specific reasons. There is a trend among advanced vapers to construct their own e-cigs using mechanical mods, rebuildable atomizers with very low resistance heating coils. Such devices are not recommended for new vapers because the configuration requires knowledge of battery safety and electrical engineering principles. Electronic cigarettes are a life style product as well. Therefore, along with the simple do-it-yourself product there is available a range of beautifully designed and handcrafted mechanical mods.  You can have them fashioned as pipes or pistols or fitted in Coke cans. There is an unimaginable array of colors and designs. With these you can make a personal statement next time you vape in public or with friends.

APV Or Mechanical Mod?

We come to the final question, which is preferable – APV or Mechanical Mod. But to start at the beginning, if you are new to vaping then you should avoid e-cig mods altogether. You should begin with the standard electronic cigarettes. Once you are familiar with the process and want to experiment a bit you can try an APV. Mechanical mods should be deferred until you understand exactly how the internal components function and you are expert enough to vape without the built in safety of APVs.

The cheapest is the simple APV with only voltage regulation and no other frills. You should be able to get these in the range of $20 to $30. As functionalities get added to the APV, its price will increase. It can go up to a few hundred dollars. The specially handcrafted mechanical mods can be costlier.