What is a Rebuildable Dripping Atomizer?
A rebuildable dripping atomizer, or RDA, is simply a rebuildable atomizer in which you directly drip eJuice on the wick/coil.
RDAs can only hold a few drops of eJuice at a time, as opposed to rebuildable atomizers (RBAs) which have a tank that holds the liquid. RDA users swear by the airflow, flavor, and vapor production they provide, claiming that it is unmatched by even the best RBA. We tend to agree.
RDAs are for vapers serious about getting their vape on. Vapers who go down the RDA ‘rabbit hole” seldom, if ever, emerge. We at Slim Pen Vape are living proof of that. Once you ‘tinker’ with your first RDA, vaping becomes less of just a pastime or hobby, but more of a lifestyle. Once started down that path, you’ll fantasize about chasing clouds emitted from the “perfect” RDA. An RDA created by you, of course.
Components of an rebuildable dripping atomizer (RDA)
An RDA is comprised of a few basic components. Let’s go over each one in detail.
We won’t delve too far into mechanical mods or batteries as they are covered extensively elsewhere on our site. Just know that you require a mechanical mod (and battery) which is compatible with your RDA (if you stick with 510, you should be fine).
Dripping Atomizer (Atty)
The key to your atty is basically how much are you willing to spend up front. If you’re just starting out and want to only get your feet wet, then definitely go low end. Inexpensive attys can be had for as little as five dollars. The flavor they produce is fairly good, as is the quality and the lifespan.
You can go midrange from between $9 to $14. The flavor is considerably higher than that of the low end attys, especially when you consider the cost increase is just a few dollars more. The same holds true for both the quality, and the lifespan.
If you’ve got the bank for it and feel the need to lighten your wallet, by all means, go high end. You’re looking upwards of $20 in some cases, and the quality, lifespan, and flavor you get for your money may or may not be worth it.
Choosing the atty for your RDA is clearly a matter of preference. Just bear in mind that your mileage may vary with all of the hardware out there. A bad experience with one does not equate to all, and vice versa.
There’s not too much to discuss in terms of drip tips. A drip tip is just a hollow tube that connects to your atomizer. They’re designed specifically for the purpose of adding eJuice to your atty quickly and easily and without having to disassemble any part of your device. Also make sure that if you’re using a drip shield that it’s compatible with your drip tip.
Drip Shield (Optional, but Recommended)
Drip shields, as with almost everything in the Vape Pen Mod world, is merely a matter of opinion. You will find some vapers who absolutely cannot stand them and view other vapors who use them as if they were riding a Harley with training wheels! But, drip shields do more than just stop leaks. The also keep the atty cooler by acting as a heat sink. This alone makes them well worthwhile.
Bear in mind that shields were originally not intended for 510 attys, but rather for 901 attys. As such, you may have to invest in a 510-510 shorty adapter to extend the length of your mod to make room for your shield (if using one). Choose a sealed adapter to protect against leaking (unless you are using a bottom feeder).
Dripping with Your RDA
There are a two ways to drip. You can drip straight down your drip tip, or you can remove the tip and drip directly onto your atomizer, or atty. Provided that it’s in good condition, your atty can hold anywhere between 5 to 12 drops (sometimes more as the eJuice is absorbed by the mesh). When you start to taste the atty go dry- and believe us – you will, simply add 3-7 more drips depending on your atomizer.
If your RDA is equipped with a drip shield, you should be fine provided you don’t overfill past the capacity of the shield. However, if not equipped with a shield, be very wary of flooding your atty.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t tell you some of the drawbacks to RDAs. Probably the biggest drawback is that they drip. This should hardly shock you, however. They are rebuildable dripping atomizers, after all. The only real issue with this, provided you don’t mind the dripping, is that this (often times) makes them ill-suited for on the go vaping.
Also, the entire drip, vape, repeat routine is not for everyone. This is the biggest reason many vapers stick with the tank. Even some diehard RDA vapers despise this, but the flavor advantage and superior vape make it well worth it. Other RDA conformist, this is all part of the ritual/experience of vaping, much like smokers who roll their own cigarettes. To these vapers, drip, vape, repeat is almost sacred, an integral part of their vaping experience.
As mentioned earlier in the article, Rebuildable Dripping Atomizers are for hardcore vapers. They are for vapers who have no qualms about spending hours upon hours trying to build the perfect coil. Vapers who don’t mind trying to figure out which gauge of NiChrome or Kanthal works best with certain models. Vapers who lay awake at night envisioning their next RDA. Will it be double coil or quad coil? Low ohm? What AWG?
Simply put, RDAs are for those vapers who live by the motto, “Vape hard or go home.” Are you that vaper?
As always. Happy Vaping!