Introduction: Homemade Vape Pen (e-cig)

Picture of Homemade Vape Pen (e-cig)

This is an overview of my homemade vape pen / mod / e-cig that I've been working on and modifying lately. My challenge was to use all parts not made for vaping, and although it was difficult, I finally have a worthy product. This is not a tutorial but an explanation. It would be very difficult for one to acquire the same items that I used, so therefore all replications will be very diverse. I also challenged myself to make DIY e-juice with the same guidelines- no ingredients made specifically for vaping. Instructions to make the juice will be at the end.

Step 1: Parts

Picture of Parts

For this project you are going to need some parts. If you're lucky, you might have some of these parts laying around. Here is a brief list:

- A battery. This is the most important part and the hardest to acquire. A disposable 9v battery may be used, but it is much better to use a larger, rechargeable battery such as an RC car battery, or in my case, I dissected a portable 1000 mAh phone charging battery and used that.

- Resistance wire. This is another item that will be hard to come by. You can buy Nichrome or Kanthal wire (the most commonly used resistance wires) online in bulk or you can get them at a vape shop. If you can not obtain the wire these ways, take apart a toaster or a hair dryer and use that! The gauge (AWG) of the wire depends on your battery. I use 28 AWG Nichrome, but sometimes I wish I had a 30 or 32. The smaller the number, the thicker the wire, the thicker the wire, the more entertaining it needs to heat up. I would recommend a 28-32 for most people.

- Some sort of wire terminal. You will need this because solder will not stick to resistance wire. Also, this will make it much easier to change out your coils if they get nasty or bent up. I used cheap screw terminals that I got on Amazon. I got 30 of them for only like $6. You can also use a crimping tool and small crimps, but it sacrifices ease of use.

- A button. Simple enough... This will be used to send the electricity to the resistance wire that is coiled up.

- Various hardware... Sorry it is hard to specify here, as this depends on your battery, your button, your terminal, and what design you're going with. I used some steel sheet metal to mount my button, brass end cap to enclose the coil, and a plastic sprinkler piece for the mouth piece (all from my local Lowes). Head down to the hardware store and give yourself a lot of time to look around. Remember to always have your coil enclosed in a metal casing, be mindful not to have any burning plastic also making its way into your lungs.

- Insulated electrical wire

- A soldering iron and solder

- Organic Cotton Balls or any sort of wick (Silicon wicks, cotton wicks, etc...)

- Juice! (See later in the tutorial for DIY juice recipes)

Step 2: How Vaping Works

Picture of How Vaping Works

The best way I can teach you how to make your own vape pen is to teach you exactly how each aspect of it works. Very basically what happens is the electricity from the battery is short circuited through the very thin resistance wire, which makes the wire heat up and vaporize the juice.

Atomizer vs Clearomizer (tank):
I'll tell you in short, atomizers are way easier to make. In an atomizer, you have the resistance wire coiled around a wick that is saturated and wet with the juice that you dripped on top of it. This happens in a small chamber and has an airflow source (a hole) under the coil. When you inhale, all of the vapors in the chamber are swept up and into your mouth. This is what I use in my homemade pen, but eventually I might make a clearomizer. Technically every vape pen in the world has some kind of atomizer in it, but when it is in a clearomizer, the wick absorbs juice from a tank rather than having to drip juice onto the wick yourself. The main advantage is the "ready to go" use, but these are much harder to make. There are clearomizers that have the coil up high and some that are down low. It would be easier to make one up high, rather than down low. In both ways the coil itself has to be in a central chamber within the tank, not in the juice. When the coil is high up, you can have the ends of the wick coming out of the chamber through small holes or slits and down into the juice, absorbing. When the coil is low, you have the wick crammed around in the chamber, with small holes on either side. The juice absorbs into the wick where the holes are. These variations can be altered and combined in different ways, to match your design, but I highly recommend started out by making a normal atomizer vape pen, and then working your way up to tanks in the future.

Step 3: How I Made My Vape Pen

Picture of How I Made My Vape Pen

This will be brief, as how I made mine will most likely not be like how you will make yours. I started with my spare phone battery (which was awesome because I can charge my pen with any android/kindle charger XD), and I took it apart and found the positive and negative terminals on the circuit board that originally led to the usb female output. I soldered wires onto those points and, after welding a mounting bracket for the button, ran the positive wire through the button. I then ran the two wires up to the other side of the battery, where i soldered them onto a screw terminal. I superglued a brass pipe end cap for pneumatics onto the battery and drilled two small holes in the side where the coil leads will go to where the screw terminal is glued to the outside of the the end cap. I then purchased a plastic piece that I found in the sprinkler section of lowes and screwed it onto the 1/2" threads belonging to the end cap. I made sure that the plastic was the female end, so that all of the heat was contained without melting any plastic. This was perhaps my 4th design, and so far the best. My next design will probably utilize a tank.

Step 4: DIY E-juice!

Picture of DIY E-juice!

This gets me excited. I have been nonstop trying tons of different combinations for bigger clouds or stronger flavor, and it's really quite fun. There are a billion tutorials out there for this, so I won't go into too much detail, but I use CVS brand Glycerin. Make sure that whatever glycerin you use, is USP (pure) and also vegetable glycerin (VG). Sometimes it won't say if it is VG or not, but most likely it is. Glycerin is pretty thick in consistency, so you might want to add a little bit of water to make it easier to deal with, but adding water will effect the cloud. Glycerin is very cheap so experiment! Mess up every once in a while until you get it perfect. As for flavoring, don't use extracts made with alcohol. It won't hurt you, but it won't taste like much. You can sometimes use imitation flavors, just read the ingredients and make sure alcohol isn't used. Go to Walmart and find Lorann flavorings or just don't flavor the juice. The glycerin tastes naturally sweet so it's not bad. As for adding Nicotine, I have no idea. Google it :P

Check this link to see what Lorann flavors are safe to vape: http://bestvaporflavors.com/best-lorann-oils-vaping/

Comments

valveman (author)2017-07-18

If you did not give permission to use your design, you may want to check Amazon for this title. Someone may be trying to profit from your work.

How To Make A Homemade Vape Pen (e-cig): DIY Vaporizer Pen Kindle Edition

by Cory Strangz (Author)

FameFFA (author)2017-04-21

How well would 2 aa batteries work?

bleedingbrain (author)2017-02-09

Does your coil melt your screw terminal?

josemsa455 (author)2016-06-10

I really want to make something like this but ive read the comments and thought i shouldnt, but i really want to make this. I dont want to die... Please give me feedback or help... I have a portable charger with 2000 mAh, 5v/1a ( dont know what that means). I figured i could get a usb cable and strip of the end that connects to the phone then somehow connect it to some coiled up nichrome and make a casing for it. Is it a safe or tell me if what i should do to make it saf. dont tell me i should just give up on the idea.

Zanthrr (author)josemsa4552016-06-11

Haha yeah I've gotten a lot of hate for this but it never did blow up! Or even get hot. The mod itself is slightly underpowered which is a bummer but if you want to make one, take apart that portable charger and find the output 5v/1a positive and negative wires. Add a button, and find a way to secure the coil. I would reccomend doing some tests with it away from your face before you start using it though. Good luck to you man and let me know if you need anything

ZoM1 (author)2016-03-09

Great if you are trying to replicate the facial features of Batman's two-face.

Bloody dangerous and needs removing, Instructables I am saddened you even let these through sheesh

DevilMayScream (author)2016-02-10

regardless of what the other people in the comments say I think this is awesome and I used this knowledge to go make my own kind of vaporizer if ya want to check it out id appreciate it

MontyV4 (author)2015-12-31

This is the worst idea in the history of idea's. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME! Unless you want to blow your fingers, hand or face off. why anyone would post anything this ignorant and inconsiderate is maddening. I've vaped for over 2 years and know a thing or 2 about battery safety and this breaks about every law known in science. Please if you need a vape pen this bad and cannot afford to purchase one then get a job and then buy one. If you are not of legal age to vape then DONT DO IT.

EricK51 (author)2015-12-30

this is dangerous and stupid

jvoutselas (author)2015-05-21

Can I just use a coil from a light bulb

josuchav (author)jvoutselas2015-11-13

Depends on the bulb but it will most likely burn within seconds, even with the low voltage. Worth a try though.

J-roc99 (author)2015-05-15

This is the coolest thing ever. Before I got a dripper I would sit on YouTube for so long just trying to find something like this. This is exactly what I was looking for. I think that you did a good job.

R.JStorey (Rodders) (author)2015-05-08

Some warnings, Some feedback, Some advice:
5 words, 'ohm's law 'and 'safe current draw' using a battery of unknown safe current draw and a coil of too low resistance leads to a high current draw from the battery and thermal feedback in the battery ( as the internal resistance is greater than the coil's resistance) possibly leading to battery failure (usually very hot, usually with nasty fumes , occasionally explosive) not something needed in the press for the vaping movement.
I think the screw terminals are a neat solution for a diy atomiser, and mech mods are fairly easy to do safely with a little thought, but please please please read up more and add warnings.
(FYI, you may be able to get an ego battery with protection against low resistance coils and a bottom coil clearomiser (heads may be rebuilt if you want) for cheaper online. drilling out the stock airflow makes them work infinitely better)

Liquid life (author)2015-05-07

Here is a video of a venting 18650

https://youtu.be/ZTzEHsJVZhA

Basic rule.... If you don't know the batteries, don't just hook them up to whatever and be an idiot and blow something up like your hand or catch your house or car on fire.....

jbriese1 (author)2015-05-07

Looks very dangerous. You are better off getting a cheap mech mod.