Cleaning coils and wire changes/oxidation - what's the authority?

Discussion in 'General Rebuildable Discussion (RTA/RBA/RDA)' started by falcor, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. falcor

    falcor Member For 1 Year

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2016
    Messages:
    18
    I use SS316L in my RTAs. I think it's got the best flavor and best health rating according to this board.

    One of my RTAs has 3.5mm coils (why don't people use larger coil diameters like this, btw?) and the other has 2.5mm coils. The main one I vape is at 0.11 ohms, at 125 watts with a 150% 1s boost.

    I wick with cotton bacon 2.

    I made some really nice SS316L Stagger Fused Clapton coils, and balanced them perfectly in my Kylin RTA (on a Predator mod with Arcticfox). I really want to keep using these coils because they're perfect for what I want.

    So every few days when I re-wick, I try to clean the coils. I've tried just about every method found on the internet... Dry burning, dry burn and run under the sink, etc. I can see that the sugary gunk comes off, but the color of the wire is not quite black, but close to it. Definitely darker than the original wire. Should it be this way? Or does that mean the coils are burnt/ruined? I do feel like even after cleaning, I'm not getting "pure" flavor anymore; they're retaining flavor; and smell like a dull e-liquid.

    This brings me to my second question. There are a lot of opinions out there on coil wire and oxidation. Some stuff says you want to heat SS316 to red or even orange, and it will produce a "protective oxidative layer". Other opinions say that you should never dry heat to orange, because it produces harmful oxidation that gets inhaled.

    So when balancing coils, I do the whole thing where I go down to 25-30W, go into a pitch black room, and fire them that way so I can see the heating position without having to heat the wire much. But I don't know if that is ideal, or not.

    The reason I'm bringing this up is that I see people offer coil cleaning advice all the time and they say "dry burn them until they are bright orange and then hit it with sink water". Something about that seems weird to me... Seems like a bad idea. You've got both high heat (orange–potential oxidation?) and then dropping the temp back to nearly room temp right away. That's a chemical reaction going on. Is it a good idea? If not, what alternatives are there to cleaning coils well? I've heard of people going six MONTHS on coils so I know it can be done, but I'm not satisfied with the loudest advice on the web on the subject, yet.

    Lastly, as I'm sure many have noticed, SS wire changes color when you first start to heat it (even at low, slow wattage). It'll turn blue, red, purple, black, and sometimes actually sometimes back to silver (but usually not). What does this mean and should it be avoided?
     
    David Wolf and mrmoodz like this.
  2. pulsevape

    pulsevape Diamond Contributor Member For 3 Years

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2014
    Messages:
    11,438
    well having to to toss an exotic coil an alien or something would be a bitch, but plain old wire coil ...hell I find it much easier just to wrap an new coil than monkey around with trying to clean them.
     
    David Wolf likes this.
  3. falcor

    falcor Member For 1 Year

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2016
    Messages:
    18
    Agreed. In this case it's a pretty exotic coil, and a very nicely wrapped and balanced one at that. And exactly the resistance I want. So I hate to trash it every few days and start over.

    Not to mention I don't really have the time to do it. Wicking I can do quickly; coiling is an art, ya know.
     
    David Wolf likes this.
  4. pulsevape

    pulsevape Diamond Contributor Member For 3 Years

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2014
    Messages:
    11,438
    have you tried Pure grain alcohol in a ultrasonic cleaner.
     
  5. Eggen

    Eggen Member For 1 Year

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2016
    Messages:
    117
    I have noticed that ss316l does not clean up as nice as nichrome or kanthal. I still use it because it tastes great but I normally don't clean ss coils. My room mate does and he does not have a problem with flavor afterwards but they still don't look too good. I personally seem to make coils faster than I can use them. I have cleaned up a few 3 core staggered fused Claptons and they looked horrible after that but my aliens seem to clean better. Only thing I can figure is that they don't seem to get as gunked up as fast as other coils. Maybe try cleaning them more frequently than you normally would and they may clean up better?

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G890A using Tapatalk
     
    David Wolf and Raymcconn like this.
  6. Eskie

    Eskie Silver Contributor Member For 1 Year

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2016
    Messages:
    947
    I dry burn my SS Clapton/fused Claptons all the time. I rinse my coils on the posts, then pulse at a low orange repeatedly (no reason to make glow bright orange) then rinse again under water. Dry them off and rewick. They might not "look" as clean as say Kanthal, but the flavor and performance is fine. I routinely get 2 to 3 months out of them with roughly weekly rewicking and dry burning.
     
  7. Raymcconn

    Raymcconn Silver Contributor Member For 1 Year

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2017
    Messages:
    695
    I have noticed this the more I am paying attention. It seems like after a dry burn they just don't last as long. I still use it but think I am just going to replace them from now on. Since I don't do anything fancy due to the two grandkids "helping" I probably should of just been replacing anyway.
     
  8. TMJ

    TMJ New Member

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2016
    Messages:
    2
    I found after dry burning, scrub with an electric toothbrush, rinse and another dry burn works pretty good.
     
  9. Dustyjeans

    Dustyjeans Bronze Contributor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2017
    Messages:
    418
    I hardly use ss at all anymore all my builds are ni80 wrap so cant tell you about the color. My process is a little diffrent but doesnt leave any residual taste to me at least. If its really gunked from sweetener i let it soak in vodka for 10-15min. Then lightly scrub with either a fine ss wire brush or for coils with 40g and finer i use a stiff toothbrush. Alternate scrubbing parallel with coil and perpendicular to flick gunk outa all the grooves. Hold under hot water while scrubbing. Once gunk is mostly gone go through the dry fire/rinse process a few times. I only dry fire to a cherry color. I just rinse under warm water doesnt seem to make a diffrence in the end result and its easier in the wrap wire. I havent used my us cleaner for dirty coils yet but i imagine it would save alot of scrub time!

    Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk
     
  10. aeon

    aeon Bronze Contributor

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2017
    Messages:
    168
    Here are some SS coils that were vaped all day, every day, for a week. They have not been cleaned at all.

    20170811_200500-01.jpeg

    Are your coils dirtier than this? If so, what from? I vape exclusively in TC.

    Thanks,
    Ian
     
  11. falcor

    falcor Member For 1 Year

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2016
    Messages:
    18
    Man, those look brand new!!!

    Mine turn nearly black... Not quite black, but a very dark shade of the original silver. Sometimes they even get nearly this dark just while pulsing them to balance them.

    Lately to clean them I've been doing what most say here... Pulse them to red/barely orange, and then hit them under the sink. And I'll repeat that about four times. They then look better... They don't seem to have a lot of gunk on them, but they do just look "burned". But I'm not letting them get bright orange while balancing them or anything, or at any other time really.

    Only thing I can think of is they're getting too hot while balancing/cleaning or the juices I use are too sugary, or both. I do vape primarily sweet desert flavors, and they tend to be a bit darker in color. And I vape at around 130W.

    Here's a photo... They're about two weeks old (maybe a bit less), were dry-burn cleaned yesterday, and have only been re-wicked once.
     

    Attached Files:

    aeon likes this.
  12. EarnestAccord

    EarnestAccord Bronze Contributor Member For 2 Years

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2015
    Messages:
    206
    I don't dry burn SS316. I only fire it off at 15w, in a darkened room and scrub with SS brush. Never returns to original, but they definately don't look like yours. I vape TC at 380-420deg and DIY my own juice, so ya I'm waayy easier on mine than you.
     

Share This Page

Close This Message