Of all the developments in the e-cigarette world probably the most significant is the all-in-one atomizer tank or clearomizer as they are known. Long term vapers will recall the hit and miss days 5 years ago. If short battery life wasn’t enough to pull your hair out, getting a consistent “hit” proved more than tedious.
The vaping scene has come along way since the wool filled mouthpiece which tended to be either too wet or too dry. Most hardcore users ditched the wool and dripped instead and this provided the best solution. The “CE” range of clearomizers were a real breakthrough and carto style tanks even better – fill up the tank and merrily vape away with no need to take a bottle of juice when out and about.
Further enhancements led to the systems such as the KangerTech Mini Protank II which we’ll be looking at today.
The Apollo Vtube 3.0 is the latest incarnation of the ever popular Vtube (also known as the Lavatube or Lambo to you and me). As the version number indicates this is the third revision of the Apollo Vtube. The original Lavatube design was pretty much an overnight success – the first low cost variable voltage device meant vapers on a budget could experience the delights of Variable Voltage (VV) without spending a small fortune. I had one, still do. The product was let down by the plastic end caps, but overall a decent introduction to advanced PV’s and ground breaking to a certain extent.
With numerous complaints about the cheap feel, the v1.0 tube quickly got a face lift. A couple of years back Apollo commissioned a unique limited edition stainless steel Vtube. This would be known as the v2.0 and while the previous example (v1.0) and the v2.0 had identical performance (they both utilised the same on-board electronics) significant external modifications such as a floating (spring loaded) centre pin, built-in ego cone threading, all metal end caps and a choice of chrome or stainless steel bodies added to a growing pedigree.
Despite being known, the world over, as a “NATO”, the ubiquitous nylon watch strap we all love and admire is in reality a product of the British Ministry of Defence (MoD) and it’s proper name is the G10 – named after the form used to requisite the strap.
I too am guilty of calling the G10 a “NATO”, probably because everyone else does! No excuse I know. So where exactly does this “NATO” business come from?
You have to hand it to Casio, they make some fine watches. Not just expensive ones either. There are plenty of real bargains to be had that are easy on the wallet, but still packed with features. One such gem is the Casio AQW-100. This is a really interesting sports watch incorporating both digital and analogue timekeeping.
I was drawn to this watch because it has tide and moon data, not for any other reason (well, in all honesty the price played a part). I’d call this an impulse purchase in as much as I hadn’t really delved into the spec beforehand so there were some surprises in store once I opened the box!
Keen readers may have noticed that I often make reference to my stainless steel Vtube having a somewhat airy draw due to the connection design. Side by side with a regular Lavatube I’d hazard a guess that the draw is 50% lighter – somewhat reminiscent of sucking air through a straw! When I used regular atomizers, this was overcome with an eGo cone, it tightened the draw and was great, but when it came to using a Dual Coil Tank (DCT), the airy nature returned.
Since I road tested the Apollo Superior eGo Kit late last year I have become hooked on CE4 clearomizer’s, so much so that I haven’t used a regular atomizer since then. Anyway, I thought I better get my hands on an adaptor so that I can use them with my stainless steel Vtube. So I headed off to Apollo and ordered one.
The CE4 has a recessed 510 connector and a metal skirt, which means their use is limited to standard eGo style devices, but an eGo adaptor opens up a whole new world of opportunities enabling this popular clearomizer to be used on just about anything, including of course the Vtube variable voltage mod.
When it comes to pipe smoking knives there is only one name to look out for and that is Joseph Rodgers. With a history dating back to 1682, you won’t go far wrong.
And while the world famous cutler may be long gone his legacy remains. Egginton Bros Ltd, Sheffield, England, now manufacturers Rodgers famous “Star and Cross” brand supplying the military and civilian market with a multitude of exceptional quality cutlery in all shapes and sizes, including, of course, the pipe smokers pocket knife, which has been produced for many decades.
As watch manufacturers go Casio is prolific. Their range encompasses all manner of styles, functions and price ranges from affordable to luxury. They are notably famous for their hardcore G-Shock series and more recently their comprehensive Pathfinder/Protek ABC (Altimeter, Barometer, Compass) watches.
Ecigarettes or personal vaping devices have come along way since their inception. In fact when I look back to 2008 (when I first started) ecigs are unrecognisable from the original products in both performance and looks.
I suppose back then I wanted an ecig to look like a cigarette – it was a comfort to hold something of similar dimensions and see that little orange LED glow each time I took a puff but these things were expensive and didn’t last that long what with the small battery and all. For a heavy smoker I found I was charging batteries via USB every 20 minutes and don’t get me started on those bloody wool filled cartridges!
Fortunately, as time passed improved devices came along and I flittered from the latest gadget to the next. The good thing is that they helped me quit and while some adverts made outrageous claims about “saving money” I reckon I spent more on ecigs during the early years than I ever would have on cigarettes during the same period!
In early 2011 a device called the Lavatube attracted my attention. This sleek and stealthy black tube looked the business and was the first variable voltage mod that fell comfortably into my limited budget.
I picked up a fully featured kit including batteries, charger and all that good stuff. What a revelation – I had never used a variable voltage mod before and was overwhelmed with the performance. For the first time ever I was able to hit that “sweet spot” every time rather than get a mouth full of juice or an indifferent vape. I was hooked on the tube.
As you’ll no doubt know most of these devices hail from China and many sellers market the same/or similar products under different names such as the Lavatube, VTube, Torpedo, Knight Rider and the ThunderVolt (to name but a few).
I was happy with my tube and while it had a few cosmetic issues namely the cheap looking plastic end caps it didn’t distract from the solid vape it consistently delivered. I had read on various forums that if dropped, the plastic battery end cap would fall off and even though it could take a fall and survive (relatively intact!), I kind of wished my tube was a bit more sturdy.