The choice of different styles, techniques, and methods of vaping has multiplied over the last few years. With such a wide variety of options, it can be easy for the vaping newcomer to feel a bit out of their depth. This article aims to provide the facts and clear up any confusion about a form of vaping that is most often used by intermediate to advanced vapers: Sub Ohm Vaping.
What is Sub-ohm vaping?
To understand what sub-ohm vaping is, we need to know a bit about how e-cigarettes work. Nearly all electronic vaping devices utilize a coil of wire, wrapped in a cotton wick, that heats up the e-juice to produce clouds of vapor. The coil of wire can have varying levels of resistance, determined by the thickness of the wire. Resistance is measured in ohms. As the name suggests, sub-ohm vaping involves using a device with a coil that has less than one ohm of resistance. Additionally, using a sub-ohm device requires a direct-to-lung (DTL) style of vaping, and enough airflow through the tank to allow for this.
Sub-ohm vaping requires more power to heat the coil to the same temperature. In the early days of vaping, users would have to modify their devices themselves to get them to provide enough power, but since around 2014 sub-ohm vapes have become increasingly common. These days, even some pod vapes are available to buy with sub-ohm coils, though these tend to be less powerful than what you would find in larger devices.
What are the benefits of sub-ohm vaping?
The key difference when sub-ohm vaping is the vastly increased vapor production. For many users, large clouds are in and of themselves reason enough to prefer using a sub-ohm device, but there are some other key benefits to keep in mind.
Sub-ohm vaping utilizes a lot of e-juice in one go, making for denser (and therefore more flavorful) clouds. Certain flavors taste far better through a sub-ohm vape than a regular one.
If you prefer a warmer vape, then sub-ohm is the way to go. Sub-ohm devices are capable of firing at serious wattages – power of up to 200w is fairly common in today’s larger devices. Low ohms enable you to vape hot without burning your coils.
What is cloud chasing?
Cloud chasing is a style of vaping that emphasizes blowing the biggest, densest clouds of vapor possible. Cloud chasing has enthusiasts all over the world, and there are now even cloud chasing events and competitions in which people aim to out vape each other.
Cloud chasing enthusiasts are constantly looking for ways to lower their ohms, increase their wattage and widen their airflows.
Using a sub-ohm vape does not necessarily make one a cloud chaser, but all vapes used for cloud chasing must by necessity be sub-ohm devices.
If you decide to build your own custom cloud-chasing tanks and coils, be sure you know what you are doing. A thorough understanding of vape safety and electricity is necessary if you want to be sure that nothing dangerous occurs.
What vapes are best for cloud chasing?
At the very minimum, cloud chasing requires a tank capable of firing sub-ohm coils.
The simplest, most straightforward way to start cloud chasing is to get your hands on an all-in-one device (also known as a pen vape) with a sub-ohm coil. Pen vapes combine the tank and battery in one device and are limited to a specific wattage. Sub-ohm pen vapes require next to no setup and are a great choice for vapers just starting their sub-ohm journey.
For more experienced users, those who want the biggest clouds, and others who like to control all the variables, many box-mods on the market will satisfy your needs.
Once you’ve found a box mod you like that is capable of firing at high wattage, you will need to pair it with an atomizer before you can start cloud chasing. There are three main types of atomizers used by cloud chasers: Tanks, drippers, and squonkers.
Tanks offer the most straightforward and convenient way to puff big clouds. A tank has both the coil and a reservoir for the e-liquid, which enables you to go for multiple sessions between refills.
The downside of tank mods is that they offer a lot less flexibility. You are limited to the manufacturer’s coils, which will need replacing (the cost adds up!) fairly frequently.
An RDA is a Rebuildable Dripping Atomizer. Also known as a “dripper”, this style of atomizer is preferred by the serious cloud chasers out there as they offer the biggest vape production and the biggest degree of customization.
With an RDA, there is no tank or reservoir to hold your juice. Instead, you remove a cover and drip your e-liquid directly onto the coils.
If customization is your thing, an RDA is undoubtedly the superior choice. Because they are rebuildable, your imagination is the limit when it comes to making your own coils.
Despite the bizarre name, “squonk” mods may be the best development in cloud-chasing technology in years. A squonk mod aims to combine the convenience of tank mods with the fat cloud production capabilities of an RDA.
Squonk mods utilize a dripper-style atomizer, but with the addition of a flexible reservoir bottle./ When you manually pump the squeeze bottle, an amount of e-liquid is squirted from the reservoir directly onto your coils. This way you can enjoy the superior flavor and vapor production of an RDA without the hassle of having to manually drip e-liquid onto your coils every time you want to vape.
How to make the biggest clouds possible
As well as getting the right equipment, making the biggest clouds possible requires a little bit of technique on your part as well. There are many finer points, and dedicated cloud chasers could probably spend hours debating their preferred methods, but as a starting point you should
Use a High VG Juice
PG and VG are the two base components of every eliquid. VG is gentler on the throat and produces bigger clouds, so make sure to pick a higher VG ratio (70% or above) if you want to cloud chase.
Use the right coil
Although technically any coil under 1 ohm is considered “sub-ohm” vaping, in reality, you will want to use a coil that is below 0.5 ohms. These coils can fire at much higher power, have more surface area in contact with the wick, and produce far bigger clouds
Don’t fear the power
Box mods are available in an array of wattages. To get the most out of your sub-ohm atomizer, ensure that your device is capable of firing at high enough power. The absolute minimum wattage you should be using is 40w./ The good news is that most box mods designed for sub-ohm vaping are capable of putting out much more than this.
It’s all in the airflow
If your tank has an adjustable airflow, keep it all the way open when sub-ohm vaping. Couple an open airflow with deep, fast draws to create the biggest clouds possible. Drawing on your sub-ohm vape slowly can result in the coils heating up too fast, which negatively affects the flavor and quality of your vape and can shorten the lifespan of your coils.
Sub-ohm vaping offers unparalleled flavor, vapor production, and satisfaction. If you are serious about vaping and not adverse to making big, fluffy vape clouds, then we would highly recommend giving cloud-chasing a try.
It’s worth bearing in mind that cloud-chasing is a visually obvious style of vaping. Members of the public might not appreciate being engulfed in clouds of funky-smelling vapor, so make sure you are careful where you indulge your habit and avoid vaping anywhere that smoking isn’t permitted.
Whether you decide to go RDA, tank, or squonk-mod, follow the guidelines in this article for the best possible cloud chasing experience.