Drip Tip User Guide
A Guide to Choosing Your e-Cigarette Drip Tip or Mouthpiece
Drip tips are the mouthpiece which is located at the top of your e-cigarette tank or atomiser. The term "drip tip" comes from their original use with RDAs where the e-juice is dripped through the tip at regular intervals in order to keep the wick moist. These days it is used to describe all atomiser mouthpieces whether they are use for dripping or not. They are often replaced either for purely aesthetic reasons or to enhance flavour and vapour production. There are various types available:
- Screw in CE mouthpieces specifically for CE4/CE5/CE6 clearomisers as used with low cost vape pens and starter kits.
- Push in 510 or 810 drip tips as used with the majority of today's high performance atomisers.
- Push on RDA top caps available in various sizes, most commonly 22mm, 24mm and 28.5mm, these replace the entire top part of the device including the drip tip.
- Tank specific drip tips, these are tips that only fit onto a specific device such as Aspire Atlantis, Aspire Nautilus X & PockeX, and Smok TFV8 & TFV12.
Plastic is a generic term covering a wide range of materials. In vaping it usually indicates a cheaper material that is not as robust or resistant to heat as engineering plastics such as acetal. However plastic is a good insulator and this helps to keep the mouthpiece cooler. Plus it can easily be produced in a wide variety shapes and colours including opaque shades, versicolour and marble effect patterns. And so it is great for pimping your device and general purpose use but not recommended for sub ohm or high power vaping. With all plastics care should be taken not to drop it onto a hard surface with weight attached to it (your tank or mod) as it is liable to break. However this might well save your much more expensive equipment from damage.
Some ingredients in e-liquids can cause cracking, frosting or even melting of some plastic tanks and tips. Abrasive and acidic liquids can cause problems and these include absinthe, cinnamon, spearmint, citrus fruit and cola. Glass, metal and acetal polymer plastics such as POM and PEI are impervious to these ingredients and are suitable for all e-liquids.
Acrylic is tougher than glass and has greater heat resistance properties than standard plastic. It can easily be produced in wide variety of colours including versicolour and marble effect patterns.
Resin is a generic term often used in vaping so as to avoid using trademarked terms such as Delrin®. It is an acetal polymer thermoplastic and has high heat tolerance and good chemical inertness.
Polyoxymethylene (POM) is also known as acetal, polyacetal and polyformaldehyde. It is a thermoplastic with a melting point of 175 °C and is used in precision parts requiring high stiffness, low friction, and good dimensional stability. It is a synthetic polymer produced by various companies with slightly different formulas and marketed under trade names such as Delrin®, Celcon®, Ramtal®, Duracon®, Kepital® and Hostaform®. Most often Delrin or Celcon are used for vaping. It is a hard plastic that is widely used for vape parts because of its high heat tolerance and good chemical inertness. POM is only available in solid colours most often black or white.
Polyetherimide (PEI) is an amorphous thermoplastic often referred to as Ultem®. It is a high temperature plastic with a higher melting point when compared to POM at 204-232 °C plus it is both solvent and flame resistant. PEI is recommended for sub-ohm and high power vapers but is mostly only available in an opaque amberish colour.
Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is often referred to as Teflon®, it has high heat tolerance and is a bit softer than POM. It has a slippery feel to it just like the coating found on non stick frying pans and has a very high melting point of 327 °C. The great thing about it is that dead skin from our lips and e-juice gunk doesn't stick to it making cleaning much easier.
Epoxy polymers are known for their excellent chemical and heat resistance with good mechanical properties, variations with high thermal insulation make this a great material for vape components. Due to the unique manufacturing process no two drip tips will have exactly the same colouring.
The colour pattern of these drip tips will vary from the image because they are created randomly. They will always have the same base colour but no two tips will be identical.
These are high quality tips and very durable, carbon fibre (or graphite fibre) has high stiffness and tensile strength and is very light in weight. Plus it is a good insulator and has a high chemical resistance and heat tolerance making it ideal for vaping applications. The bonus is it has an awesome two tone patterned look but it is expensive especially when compared to basic plastics.
Glass drip tips are recommended for a superior quality and clean tasting vape making them ideal for taste connoisseurs. It is perfect for use with abrasive or acidic e-liquids (which have been known to react with some plastic tips and tanks) because it is impervious to such ingredients. Glass is naturally more inert and is suitable for use with all e-liquids plus it is a good insulator which helps to keep the mouthpiece cool when vaping. However it is much more prone to breakage. Borosilicate glass, often known under trade names such as Pyrex® and Duran®, has silica and boron trioxide as its main constituents. It is chemically resistant, has a low thermal expansion coefficient and can be used at relatively high temperatures making it ideal for vape components.
Metal tips are tough and they are impervious to abrasive/acidic e-liquids which have been known to react with some plastics. Their downside is that metal is a good conductor of heat meaning that they can get quite hot especially for high power vapers. In very cold or winter climates metal materials might stick to wet lips.
Aluminium is very light in weight especially when compared to stainless steel, this can be very important with the longer e-pipe style drip tips. It has a much higher thermal coefficient meaning it cools down more quickly but it is not as tough. It is much easier to machine and therefore aluminium drip tips are cheaper to buy than stainless steel or titanium versions plus they are readily available in a wide variety of colours.
Brass is a copper/zinc alloy, the addition of zinc makes it stronger than pure copper whilst retaining the much of its desirable properties (see below). Brass with a zinc content of 10% becomes a rich golden colour which is often sought after in vaping products.
Copper is a good thermal conductor and so dissipates heat very efficiently plus it is corrosion resistant, malleable and antibacterial. It is a naturally hygienic metal that slows down the growth of germs such as E-coli. Copper is a ferrous metal and will naturally tarnish over time which gives an antique patina on the surface of the metal, a desirable effect for some vapers.
Stainless steel is often considered as the ultimate material because it is almost indestructible and does not corrode or wear. Downsides are it retains heat much more than plastic does so if you're vaping at high power these tend to get hot. It also attracts vapour gunk very quickly.
Titanium is extremely corrosion resistant and it has a high strength to density ratio, as strong as some steels but less dense making it much lighter. It has fairly low thermal conductivity making it ideal for vaping applications. Its use allows the wall of the connector to made thinner thus creating a bigger dripping hole for increased vapour production.
Wooden drip tips insulate against heat keeping the tip cooler even when chain vaping. They provide a warm and comfortable feel to your lips with the organic appeal of natural wood. Stabilised wood has been saturated with acrylic resin to make it harder and more workable, it does not shrink or crack giving improved performance for vape components. Plus it is possible to add dyes to the resin to allow the creation of vibrant colouring.
Materials are often combined in drip tip design to provide multiple characteristics. For example, a stainless steel body with a POM thermoplastic base. This offers the insulation properties of plastic combined with the look, feel and durability of metal. There is no one best combination as all vapers will be driven by different needs depending on the kit they use and their own personal vaping style. Cloud chasers will have different needs than taste connoisseurs and sub ohm vapers will be different than pimping fans.
Unfortunately there is no industry standard that defines the bore sizes used within drip tips and there is a lot of inconsistency amongst different vendors on how these are described. All our products are described as detailed below:
A narrow or small bore creates a more concentrated and therefore stronger flavour for your ecig and gives a nice tight vape, best for flavour and taste connoisseurs.
Tips less than 5.5mm bore diameter.
Still gives fantastic taste but with a little more air than the narrow bore for a top quality vape.
Tips from 5.5mm to less than 7.5mm bore diameter.
Gives an airy yet very satisfying vape, the first step towards cloud chasing.
Tips from 7.5mm to less than 9.5mm bore diameter.
Preferred for easy dripping and increases the air flow for your vape producing loads of vapour, a cloud chasers favourite.
Tips from 9.5mm to less than 11.5mm bore diameter.
Extra Wide Bore
Further increases the ecig air flow to give your vape oodles of vapour with an excellent draw, recommended for cloud chasers.
Tips from 11.5mm to less than 14mm bore diameter.
Super Wide Bore
Mostly available in large RDA top caps and provides a insane airflow with maximum draw.
Tips from 14mm bore diameter.
The height or length of the tip is usually a matter of personal preference, longer tips provide a cooler vape because there is further for the vapour to travel. A 510 fitting is usually 5mm in length and this is included in the total length measurement.
We define short tips as those with a total length of less than 27mm. Wide bore tips are usually very short in length, often less than 20mm, and so these are most popular with cloud chasing vapers.
Our definition for tall tips is from 27mm to less than 40mm. Most commonly these tend to be medium and big bore tips.
We define these as those with a total length of 40mm and above, they are usually e-pipe style drip tips. These are mostly narrow/small bore tips although there are some big and medium bore versions.
The desired shape of the mouthpiece is mostly a matter of personal preference but there are a number of factors to consider.
Flat tips are mostly found on smaller bore drip tips, they give the vaper a feel for the orientation of their device without having to look at it and are especially popular with ex pipe smokers.
Round tips are by far the most popular style and allow the user to vape without the need to know the precise orientation of their e-cigarette device, wide bore tips are always round.
Slash cut tips are an alternative to rotating and curved tips for those who like to vape at an angle but who prefer wider bore tips.
A flange at the end of the tip provides a "comfort lip" for some vapers so that they can feel the end of the tip, these are most often found an smaller bore and e-pipe style tips.
Figure 8 or double barrelled drip tips are only found on the extra wide or super wide drip tips used by cloud chasers. They look like two big bore drip tips stuck together but allow for insane vapour flow.
The standard size for 510 tips is approximately 8.5mm in diameter by 5mm in length and for 810 tips it is approximately 12.5mm in diameter by 5mm in length. If a tip does not fit your device properly this can often be improved by changing the o-ring seals on the connector, use thicker o-rings for a tighter fit and thinner o-rings for a looser fit.
Single Seal O-Ring
Used for the vast majority of 510 drip tips. These are usually 9mm in diameter by 1.5mm thick with a round profile. Some large tips such as the pipe style products use wider seals with a flat profile to give a a more stable fit.
Twin Seal O-Ring
A double o-ring provides a tighter seal and give a more stable fit to your tank. These seals are thinner than the single seals, we recommend wetting the connector and the seals prior to fitting so as to prevent damage. 810 tips usually have twin seals.
Friction fit drip tips make for a tighter fit on your ecig but give a much wider dripping hole for increased vapour flow. This o-ring free design will be harder to fit and wetting the connector will assist the assembly process.
Extended 510XL Connection
This is longer than the standard 510 fitting measuring approximately 8mm and can be found on some tanks such as the Kanger AeroTank and Mini AeroTank. The standard tips will still fit and there are a small number of tips available in this extended size which may also include triple o-rings.
Some drip tips have extra air vents built into the base and are ideal for those who like an airy vape or for use with tanks that do not have their own air flow control system.
Variable air flow tips allow the vents to be varied from zero to maximum just by twisting the adjustment ring and are great for those that like some control of their vape.
Fixed air flow vents are not adjustable but will boost the air in your vapour.
Heatsink cooling is often integrated into the drip tip design in order to cool the vapour, especially popular with sub ohm vapers and for use with high power settings.
A series of grooves are cut into the base of the tip which increases the surface area to cool the vapour, most commonly found on tips with metal bases and wider plastic tips.
A series of ribs are moulded into the base of the tip which increases the surface area to cool the vapour, most often found on glass and smaller bore plastic tips and are especially common with e-pipe style products.
These have a 360 degree knuckle joint so you can swivel your drip tip at an angle up to 45 degrees.