You bought that new shiny rebuildable tank or atomizer and have used it until you wore it out. Now it’s time to replace the wick and/or coil. Or maybe you just want to play and try your hand at replacing it (like I did with my first one). After some practice, it’s really kind of easy but there are some good tips and tricks you might like to know before you get started.
In this post, I will try and walk you through the installation of a new wick and coil in your rebuildable atomizer/tank unit. I’ve learned a few tips and tricks that may help you along your way. As always, there are lots of photos.
If you have never wound your own coil around a new wick, you may want to start with a “prewound” wick. That is what I will go through with this article since it is the best way to start. I’ll cover winding your own coil in another post.
Prewound wick/coil combinations can be bought really cheap and is the easiest way to begin your journey of creating your own atomizer. You can pick up wicks with prewound coils at a lot of places. I get most of mine at Madvapes since they are really inexpensive. Although you can’t get the exact ones I used in theis tutorial anymore, here is a link to the rebuildable coil/wicks at Madvapes. I use 3.0 ohm coil-wick combinations for my Puck mod. As I mentioned before in other posts, 3 ohm is the perfect resistance for the Puck eCig mod.
Some tools that will help you,
A small phillips or a small flat blade screw driver (depending on the type of terminals you have).
A pair of small needle nose pliers with a long nose or tweezers (for grabbing the wire and wrapping it around the posts).
Some Styrofoam or stiff rubber foam where you can cut a hole in to hold you tank while you work on it.
A stand alone magnifier if you have trouble seeing small things.
A light to light up your work area brightly to help you see the small wires.
A volt/ohm meter for checking your work after you put the coil/wick on.
Let’s get started.
You can see the coil and leads in the photo below. This type of coil and wick from Madvapes has leads crimped to the actual coil so it will be really close to 3 ohms. With, other coils without the leads, you may need to adjust the ohms by how much of the wire you put under the screw terminals.
Remove the wick/coil from the package.
Now you will want to remove the top from your rebuildable tank/atomizer and mount it into something like hard foam rubber or Styrofoam to support it while you work on it. This is a must and will be very helpful for you. It is almost impossible to work on this without mounting it in something to hold it. The Smoketech “R” rebuildable tank comes in packaging of rubber foam which is perfect for this.
With the top removed, take a look at what type of posts you have. Most have screws that screw down on the leads. I have a couple that have spring terminals which have their good points and bad points. I do like spring terminals but you have to mount it in something to work on it unless you have 3 or more hands.
Remove your old wick by loosening your screws or by pushing down on the round washer just under the spring terminal head and removing the old wire leads from the posts. After the leads are disconnected, pull the old wick out of the tank. You may want to wash and clean up your tank with water while it is apart. Dry it off and continue.
Now it’s time to start installing your wick. Insert the ends of your wick into the two holes in-between the terminals. The wicks I have links to above have tapered ends so it is pretty easy to insert them.
Pull (or push) the wick ends down until the coil is just above the center hole of the tank.
For the spring terminal type like I have, use a small flat blade screw driver to push down the washer just under the post top so you can wrap the wire around the post. You will need some long nose needle nose pliers or some tweezers to grab the coil lead and manipulate it around the post.
If you have actual screw terminals, unscrew the terminals a bit with a small phillips screw driver.
Grab the wire with the needle nose pliers or tweezers and wrap the coil lead around the first post you are working on. Make sure the coil stays in the center between the two posts.
Once you have the first lead on the first post, tighten the screw if you have screws or for spring posts, just remove the flat blade screw driver and tension will clamp onto the lead automatically.
Do the same procedure you did for the first post to the second lead and post. Once you have that completed, make sure the coil is still centered above the air hold in the center of the tank top. It should look like this when done…
You also want to make sure the coil is not sitting right on the center air hole tube that most rebuildable tanks have. Some of them are plastic and the coil will melt it when heated up if it is touching it.
If it is touching the center hole shaft, take a small flat blade screw driver and slide it under the coil and gently push it up off of the center air tube. It doesn’t have to have a lot of clearance, just not resting on it.
Once you have the coil centered and elevated off of the center air tube enough, you need to check and make sure you have no shorts and have a good connection. You can use an ohmmeter to do this.
Note: most ohmmeter leads have some resistance to them so to check your ohmmeter lead resistance, short your leads together while on your lowest ohm setting on your meter and see what the reading is.
My meter above was fluctuating between .3 and .4 ohms. You will want to subtract this value from the reading we get next.
Put your ohmmeter leads across your terminals where your coil leads are attached. Read the ohm value. If it shows 0, you have a short somewhere. If it shows nothing, your coil is not connected or broke.
In the photo above, mine is reading 3.4 ohms. Substract the .4 ohms (.3 pictured) from the 3.4 ohm reading of the ohmmeter and you get 3.0 ohms. Exactly what it should be. We’re good to go at this point. If it is anywhere from 2 to 3 ohms, you may have a winding touching each other so you need to make sure the coil windings are not touching.
Fill your tank with ejuice with whatever method your tank uses. Mine has a small screw that you take out and fill through the hole the screw goes in. When full, I put the screw back in and it is ready.
After filling the tank, you will want to prime the wick and coil by dropping some ejuice directly on the wick at the coil and wick. Make sure the wick is good and saturated with ejuice.
Once the wick is good and saturated, you are ready to close ‘er up and vape. Put the top on your tank, put the tank on your favorite Puck and vape away. Congratulations, you’re done.
You can now feel proud that you have rebuilt your tank yourself and can now do so whenever you feel like it. Freedom at it’s finest.