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Choosing the right vaping device and the right e-juice are the first steps to creating an amazing vaping experience. On top of that, you also need to select a good coil. One of the factors you need to consider when choosing coils (whether ready-made or making at home) is the vape wire.
Different types of vape wires exhibit varying features and quality. That's why it's imperative that you choose the right one based on your device and your vaping style. Unfortunately, there's no single wire that is a definite best, so you have to take time to weigh the pros and cons of each option to determine the best.
What to Consider When Choosing a Vape Wire
There are several fundamental characteristics you need to consider when choosing a vape wire. These traits will affect how the wire performs when subjected to heat and ultimately how you vape.
- Wire gauge – This refers to the diameter of the wire and is often expressed as a numerical value. The most crucial factor to remember when assessing the wire gauge is, as the wire gauge number increases, the diameter of the wire gets smaller.
- Resistance – Wire resistance plays a crucial role in your vaping experience. As the diameter of a vape wire increases, the wire resistance decreases, especially when considering vape wires made from the same material, with the same number of wraps and the same ID. It's important to note that the resistance of a wire is affected by various factors, including the length of wire used and the number of wraps that affect the internal resistance.
- Ramp-up time – It is the time it takes your coils to reach the ideal temperature for vaping. The ramp-up time differs depending on the material, wraps, and gauge of the wire. Lower gauge wires will typically take more time to heat because they have a larger mass.
- TCR – The Temperature, Coefficient of Resistance is the ability of the wire to detect when to regulate the current and wattage delivered to the coil. This feature is vital in temperature control mods.
Types of Vape Wire
There are different types of vape wire used to make coils. Each of them offers unique benefits and is often preferred in varying vaping situations. At Flawless Vape, we stock vape wires and coils made from all these types of vape wires.
Kanthal is a ferritic alloy made from iron, chromium and aluminium. Its good features include commendable resistance to oxidation, holds its shape when formed into coils, and is ideal for straight wattage mods.
Kanthal is inexpensive and widely available. It’s perfect for vapers that are getting started with rebuilding and dripping.
Nichrome is like Kanthal in many ways. It is an alloy of nickel and chromium but contains other metals like iron as well. Nichrome comes in a variety of grades, but the most popular in vaping circles is Ni80. It has lower resistance than Kanthal, heats faster, is easy to coil and holds its shape when wicking. It has a lower melting point than Kanthal, so you should be cautious when dry burning your coils. If you have known nickel allergies, you shouldn’t use coils made from nichrome.
Stainless steel is a unique vape wire used for temperature control vaping and straight wattage vaping. It's made from an alloy of nickel, chromium and carbon. Like nichrome, there are various grades of stainless steel. The most common for coil building is SS316L.
Stainless steel is also easy to form and holds its shape well. It has a shorter ramp-up time than Kanthal and has lower resistance for the same gauge. When using the stainless steel vape wire, you should avoid dry burning your coil.
Often referred to as ni200, this vape wire is made from pure nickel. It was the first wire in the industry to use temperature control, and it cannot be used in straight wattage mode. Unlike the previous types of wires, nickel is soft, hard to form and easily deforms when wicking. Regardless, nickel wire is still very popular among TC enthusiasts and easy to find.
Titanium is another TC-only wire. It is not the most common wire because of apparent reasons for its potential to ignite when it reaches certain temperatures, although it's difficult to reach those temperatures when vaping. Some vapers still use titanium vape wire. If you choose to give it a try as well, it goes without saying that you shouldn't attempt to dry burn the coil.
While titanium is easy to work into coils and doesn’t deform when wicking, it’s often hard to find because most vape shops don’t stock it.
Lastly, there are mesh coils. These have evolved to become the most popular choice for vaping among all levels of vapers. These coils are often constructed from stainless steel or Kanthal materials. They are commonly used in RDAs and are preferred for their rich flavour production because of the larger heating surface area. Mesh coils have a longer lifespan, are extremely power-efficient, and have a faster ramp-up time.