e-cigarettes, quitting smoking, pvs and stuff.

ethel the pug has a smoke break.Ok so- this is the promised post about vaporising and ecigs and all that.

another REALLY USEFUL beginner’s guide is here. I’m just talking about my own personal experiences.

As regular readers already know, I’ve been smoking one or two packs a day since I was twelve. That’s…well, it’s a lot of years. I’ve tried the following to quit:

  • cold turkey
  • chantix
  • stepping down
  • patches, gum
  • “alan carr”
  • cold turkey
  • ultralights
  • cold turkey
  • “quit buddies”
  • support groups, online and phone support, etc
  • chantix (yes…twice)

Now, I have never quit for more than a day. I think chantix came closest- I lasted a day and a half on that. And managed, for a few weeks, to cut back to half a pack a day. But every time I’ve tried, I’ve ended up smoking again within a day.

Maybe I’m weak. Maybe part of it is that I start going crazy mentally when I go a few hours without a cigarette. Maybe I just didn’t “WANT TO QUIT” hard enough- maybe pep talks have never helped me do much of anything.

At any rate I’ve been unable to quit before. I’ve currently not smoked for five days. six? I’ve smoked one pack in the last three weeks (up until however-many-days-ago) which in itself is some kind of miracle.


juice, battery, tank.

I am using a nicotine vaporizer, otherwise known as a PV, to stop. These come in a lot of different forms, but I have no clue about most of them so I’ll just be talking about what I’ve used/tried. if you know more about these feel free to comment and tell me!

I started out trying a blu. This did not work. It kind of looked like a cigarette, and tasted like one sort of. But I just wanted a cigarette after using it. It didn’t satisfy me. And what’s more- I was “smoking” it only when I wanted a cigarette, and feeling bad if I used it more often. It wasn’t enjoyable- it was like the gum, like the patch. A crappy-tasting replacement.

I ended up smoking anyway, and just setting it aside somewhere (in my car) and forgetting about it.

Then I tried a starter kit from vaporsmiths. Strangely enough it lasted a few days longer than the blu had; the battery on it is a little more powerful, and the nicotine content a little higher, so I actually didn’t want to smoke after I had used it. I was still smoking, mind you- just not as often.

Then, I found a good small group of people who use ecigs/PVs (here, if you’re curious) and one of them sent me gear, as a favor, just because. This setup worked. It made strong, flavor-filled vapor that felt like I was smoking. I could puff and notice the “smoke” going into my lungs, into my throat. I had something to fiddle with and chew on. I only smoked one or two cigarettes the first day after it arrived.The gear I started with was an eGo twist battery, and a drip atomizer. That’s it. Nothing fancy- you just charge the battery, then attach the atomizer and tip, and pour a few drops of the juice into it.

I started out with tobacco-flavored juice that he’d sent me along with the setup. But I realized pretty quickly that real cigarettes don’t actually taste like tobacco- unless you’re smoking a pipe, you’re not really getting a tobacco taste. So I started trying out more flavors, mostly from this place (cheap, so you can try lots) and this place (delicious)

I also finally had a little spare cash and ordered a backup battery, one of these, and clearomizers.


the guts of the clearomizer

To get started trying this PV thing out, if you’re going to use it to quit or cut back on smoking:

  • Vaporize as often and as much as you need to. I am still pretty much constantly using the PV. Your body is used to triggers making you want a cigarette, and to satisfying an oral fixation and fidget object, all at the same time. So give yourself a break and don’t try to ration your vaporizing at first.
  • Smoke if you really want to. If you know you can still smoke, and you have them available, your brain won’t freak out and start panicking. I have a couple packs of cigarettes here but I haven’t touched them in days. I carried a pack around the first few days I was cutting back but never smoked any. For a few days I was smoking one in the morning as usual, but then one day it didn’t satisfy, and I ended up vaporizing instead. Having the option prevents your mind from starting to freak out, and lets you transition without pressure. (which was a huge help for me and my demand resistance)
  • Get the right juice and gear! If you smoke a pack a day, that’s at least $35 a week you’re spending. I’ll post links below where you can get your beginning gear, everything needed, for around that much. Once you have the set-up, the juice is incredibly cheap.
  • Get the right juice and gear! If you smoke a lot now, don’t start out with low-nicotine content juice and shitty batteries that won’t let you get enough of a hit. You have to satisfy the nicotine craving, so that your body can get used to functioning without the tons of other shit it’s accustomed to inhaling along with it. Buying some shitty ecig at the gas station will not help you quit any more than going cold turkey or cutting back would.
  • DRINK A SHITLOAD OF WATER OR SOMETHING. seriously. your eyeballs will even get dry. I guzzle sweet tea with honey, but water might be ok for those of you who don’t think it tastes like mouth.

The gear.

eGo twist with the atomizer and drip tip.

eGo twist with the atomizer and drip tip.

I have:

  • this battery– for carrying around when I’m not at home. they’re 14$ at this place.
  • one of these chargers– for the car (I have a USB charger for the lighter input). $3.50.
  • I also have a full-sized eGo battery (the twist) and charger for the wall. If you get one here, they send you free juice. but you can get by with one or two of the mini batteries.
  • in the photos, I’ve got these. they screw onto the battery. you pour some juice into them, let it soak into the wicks, and go.
  • everything I have is eGo compatible. I’d say pick one battery and only get things that match it.
  • juice: I get 24mg juices from here for testing flavors in general (cheap) and from here for delicious organic type things. I’m making my own juice now too but that’s a whole nother post.
  • that’s it. that’s all you need. plus a roll of paper towels because you will spill shit. and if you get it on your skin you’ll get a nicotine rush.


There are a few good resources out there for information about this stuff, but I’ve gotten the best answers by either asking the community at large, or emailing one of the vendors. The people involved in this (with the exception of the crappy gas station brands) are all pretty much small businesses, and are really willing to take the time to help out.