Nicotine and Nicotine Handling.

Discussion in 'DIY E-Liquid - Guides, Tips & Tricks!' started by Boogenshizzle, Aug 30, 2017.

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  1. Boogenshizzle

    Boogenshizzle New Member Unlisted Vendor

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    As with any new or old adventure, safety is number one priority. This chapter will give you a complete understanding of the nicotine you use and how to store and dispense it safely and easily. Please keep all nicotine, materials, equipment, etc., out of the reach of children and pets.

    Before handling your nicotine or transferring it into smaller bottles, please set out some paper towels on the surface and PUT ON SOME NITRILE GLOVES. The last thing you need is it being your first time handling nicotine and making a huge mess everywhere and you end up not feeling too well. So please, for your sake, your family's sake, your pets sake, wear the gloves until you are a genius with this stuff. Then wear gloves still. All it will take is one time and you'll believe.

    Be very careful to not get the nicotine on your clothes. Do not wear long sleeves and pay attention to where every single drop goes. I have a story about this you don't want to hear. Let's just suffice to say it wasn't pretty.

    TYPES OF NICOTINE SOLUTIONS:

    PG:

    I prefer my nicotine at 100 mg/ml in pg for several reasons. It is easy to shake up causing less chance of spots, easy to use, easy to dispense. This is my everyday user. I keep a 50 ml bottle in my refrigerator in the very top of the door. (I am blessed to have a side by side fridge.) If this isn't going to work for you, I'd recommend keeping the 50 ml in the freezer (freezer is above fridge) and pull it out a few minutes before you start mixing; allowing it to warm up a little.

    Nicotine suspended in PG/VG:

    I always recommend 100MG/ML in PG for every beginner. I know it's the strongest you can buy from a standard vendor, but due to the math, it's also the easiest to use. If you are making max VG juice then obviously you would want to use nicotine suspended in VG.

    VG:

    While I have quite a bit of vg nicotine, it is rarely used anymore. It is much thicker and much tougher to handle but can also be very smooth if you get quality nicotine, and if it is shaken properly and handled correctly. Otherwise. I'd say go PG. This is just personal preference and opinion. While I cannot personally prove that there is a thing such as hotspots since I do not have a chemistry degree. I have done the following:

    Poured NOT SHAKEN 100mg/ml VG nicotine from the SAME bottle into identical dishes.

    I have tested each of these, from multiple locations of these dishes and received different levels of nicotine reading from 79mg/ml-115mg/ml. There seemed to be no consistency to the level of nicotine throughout the bottle. Hence "hot spots." So if you are not willing to shake the heck out of your VG nicotine, and then shake it some more, please get PG nic.

    When I do have to work with my VG nicotine, I simply bring the bottle (usually a small one) out of the freezer, about a half an hour before mixing. This will allow it to come to room temperature and be much easier to shake and mix together. This is a VITAL part of this process as cold VG nicotine will not mix well due to the thick viscosity of it. Then when you go to put it in your mix, it's possible you won't be getting the intended strength of nicotine in your bottle.

    Colored and harsh nicotine

    When you first receive your nicotine there are several things going on. I first recommend testing it. A nicotine test kit should be purchased for around $8.00 at most vendors. Please do yourself a favor and get it. Shake and test your nicotine. Whatever it reads; should be put into your calculator. What this will do is eliminate any mistakes on the nicotines' part. You know exactly the concentration of nicotine in the base of pg/vg or both. Why do you have to do this? Because while most companies have good quality control, it's impossible to be perfect 100% of the time and you just don't want to be that guy that can't figure out why his juices are harsher than what they should be.

    Why is my nicotine yellow or pink? Many times you will get nicotine that while it is clear and looks great, it might have a very very slight pink or yellow tint to it. This is natural and occurs in naturally extracted/distilled processes of nicotine. It's all in the processes. The ones with no smell and taste whatsoever are processed differently and have more chemicals involved. The final product is bleached to give it that perfectly clear color. Chemnic, Carolina extract, and others are distilled from tobacco naturally, multiple times, so while the coloring sometimes can be pink or very lightly yellow, you technically are getting a purer product. Most of the companies now have good nicotine consistently and it's up to you to test it, and to store it correctly in order to preserve it for a long period of time.
     
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  2. Boogenshizzle

    Boogenshizzle New Member Unlisted Vendor

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    Do I add my nicotine before or after my steep? (nicotine quality)

    Depends. If you are using a high quality nicotine, then it shouldn't matter. I personally put in my nicotine before I steep. This way I know exactly what it's going to taste like. I can then adjust my recipe as needed on the next batch. If you have a poor quality nicotine, I probably wouldn't do this as it could possibly degrade the flavoring.

    Many people like to add their nicotine after steeping. I find my nicotine to be more of a throat punch when used fresh. There really is no right or wrong way and it's going to be whatever works for you.

    How to store your nicotine: I keep all of my nicotine in the freezer. When you "freeze" the nicotine, it simply slows down the oxidation process, the fluid becomes more viscous and is MUCH thicker than before; making it more complicated to shake. I find a good example is thick alcohol. Everyone knows if you put a bottle of booze in the freezer it not only doesn't freeze, but it becomes thicker. You want your bottles to stand straight up and down as there is more surface area of nicotine exposed to the air in the bottle when it is laying down. When you first receive a bottle of nicotine, if you do not need to open it, DON"T! Most companies now use an argon gas filler to keep oxygen out of the bottle. Only open it when necessary.

    What about a dark closet or cabinet? I get that it is still a cool and dry location. But being that it's not cold, it's may not slow the oxidation of the nicotine. Especially after opening. Once the nicotine is opened, OXYgen is introduced to the nicotine and OXIdation happens. It is a natural occurrence in all nicotines. Some nicotines do it slower than others. If I were going to store it in a dark and cool location, the only time I'd do it, is pre-opening, and I was sure that the manufacturer used some sort of gas to remove all oxygen from the bottle. Otherwise it's just best to freeze it. Cool it at least. Perhaps a little mini fridge with a hasp and lock and key. ANYTHING TO KEEP IT COLD-FROZEN. I keep mine at the very top of my freezer in the back of a shelf away from anyone but me. My usable bottle (my 30 ml for daily use), I keep at the very top of my fridge in the back wrapped in a paper towel/brown paper to keep out light. This is the BEST way to store your nicotine. Period. Coldest, darkest, unopened if possible.


    Easy Nicotine Math:

    There are so many nicotines on the market now in many different concentrations and either in PG/VG or both at the same time. Which do you want to get? Well it really depends on what kind of juice you want to make. From a beginners standpoint, I'm going to recommend 100mg/ml in PG as it is easier to handle and do the math.

    A perfect example will be this: The average juice now is 3mg of nicotine. Hence 3mg= .3ml of 100mg/ml per 10mls of juice (.9mls in a 30ml bottle). If you wanted 4mg it would be 4mg=.4ml of 100mg/ml per 10mls (1.2mls in a 30ml bottle) and so on and so forth. So if you wanted "18mg", you would use: 18mg= 1.8ml of 100mg/ml per 10mls (5.4ml in a 30ml bottle). The 100mg/ml as you can see, keeps it super simple, no matter the carrier. Though you will most likely use a calculator to add your nicotine, this will allow you to know you're putting in the right amount.

    Many Europeans are limited to the strength of the nicotine that they can buy. As of right now I know that the maximum in the U.K. right now is 72mg/ml. As 72mg/ml is less than 100mg/ml the math is a bit different, but the process is the same. 3mg = .5ml of nicotine per 10mls or 1.5mls of nicotine per 30mls of finished liquid.

    Try to be safe and not make it rocket science.

    From the more experienced side, I'd still recommend pg nic. You most likely will be adding pg to your juice anyway to help carry the flavor, why not have your nicotine in it too? The only time I recommend vg nicotine is if you are going for a MAX VG juice. I normally do not recommend this as it is helpful to have the extra pg to help carry the flavoring.



    The Breakdown:

    I leave all my liters of nicotine unopened until absolutely necessary. Many companies now use argon gas to push out all of the oxygen in the bottle and if you don't need to open it and put oxygen in it, don't. When the time comes, open it and pour out 240 mls into a separate container (brown amber glass preferred but some manufacturers will send vg/pg/nic in a 240 ml and I highly recommend keeping these. This will be your go to container. This is the container you use to refill your 30-50ml bottle that you use in your daily mixing. This way you'll open your liter only 4 times, hence reducing the amount of oxygen introduced into the bottle.

    Do yourself a favor and get yourself a nicotine titration kit from any of the major manufacturers and test each and every bottle of nicotine you buy. Once you know exactly what level your nicotine is, you simply put it into the calculator as such and use accordingly. Please, for your safety, do not ever assume you are getting the mg/ml level of nicotine that you ordered. I've ordered 100mg/ml and received 200, and I've ordered 100mg/ml and received 50. For your safety, do not ever ever ever assume.



    Step by Step:

    1. Put on your gloves
    1. If you are a klutz, perhaps some safety glasses (though I have no idea why or how you would get it in your eye).
    1. Lay out some paper towels on the surface you are going to use.
    1. Make sure you set your nicotine out of the freezer before hand. Bring it to room temperature. Take a paper towel and wrap it right at the base of the cap, in case of leaks. The last thing you want to do is find out the hard way that the nicotine bottle cap you have leaks a couple drops. Then shake it. If it is VG nicotine, shake till it hurts and then shake some more. PG nicotine I shake for 1 minute and VG nicotine I've been known to shake as long as 10 minutes. This is a very vital part of the process. Open your fresh nicotine and test it. Follow the instructions that came with the titration kit. (if you are just refilling your transfer bottle after opening the big bottle, just make sure to bring to room temperature and shake)
    1. Set everything out first. Have your big nicotine bottle, your transfer bottle (240mls) and your 30-50 ml open and ready to fill.
    1. I speculate your nicotine is at room temperature since you have pulled it and tested it right?
    1. Be very careful and fill up your transfer bottle (240ml). Also while you have it out, you might as well fill up a bottle for daily use (usually 30-50mls). Always leave a very minor amount of headroom for shaking.
    1. Cap everything tight before doing anything else. If your big nicotine bottle came in a plastic bag, put it back in there and put it in the uppermost part of your freezer in the very back, away from children. This is the same location for your transfer bottle too. If this is not an option, a college dorm fridge works great with a padlocked door. I keep my daily use bottle wrapped in a paper towel (to prevent light) and put into the butter door of my fridge. If this is not an option (kids), it's probably best to keep it in the freezer with the other bottles and just pull it out a few minutes before use to warm a little.


    That's it. Hopefully you made it this far without spilling it. If you didn't, then you still have your gloves on, all is not lost and you have paper towels down on the counter. Take your capped and sealed bottles and wash the exterior of them with some hot water. Dry with paper towels and then put your nicotine away... out of reach of children and pets, in a cold dark location. Best bet is your freezer.

    So to recap:

    1. Put on gloves. Glasses if you want them.
    1. Lay out paper towels.
    1. Pull your nicotine out to warm to room temperature.
    1. Shake it till it is mixed (1-5 minutes)
    1. Test it if it's new according to the test kit directions.
    1. Set your bottles out.
    1. Be very careful, fill your bottles till almost full. (Leave room to shake)
    1. Close everything immediately.
    1. Store in freezer.
     
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  3. AndriaD

    AndriaD Shine on, you crazy... VU Donator Diamond Contributor Member For 3 Years ECF Refugee

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    I agree that when one is new to handling high-concentration nicotine, gloves really are essential. However, once one is accustomed to it, and one doesn't get the shakes just because of handling it, gloves actually make you more clumsy, and thus more likely to spill it.

    If I had to clean up a spill, I would definitely wear them, for the reasons you mentioned, plus the fact that my decrease to 3mg means I don't have much tolerance for it anymore... but when I'm simply mixing, I don't wear gloves, because gloves make me clumsy. They also make my hands sweat, which makes me uncomfortable, which makes me irritable, which makes me clumsy.

    Andria
     
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  4. Boogenshizzle

    Boogenshizzle New Member Unlisted Vendor

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    At this point, personally, the only time I wear gloves is during bottle transfers. Since I use the squeezy 30 ml for mixing I never have a problem there as there is no spillage or exposure.
     
  5. AndriaD

    AndriaD Shine on, you crazy... VU Donator Diamond Contributor Member For 3 Years ECF Refugee

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    Hmm... it's been over a year since I ordered any nicotine and had to xfer it to another bottle. Frankly I can't remember if I wore gloves or not, the last time I transferred nic to glass bottles.... but I'm gonna go out on a limb and say, probably not. I ALWAYS did, when I first started dealing with 100mg; heck, when I started vaping, 6mg made me nervous and shaky. :giggle: But after dealing with the gloves for a couple of bottle transfers, I realized that they really just made me clumsier, so in the absence of a big mess of nic to clean up, I was better off bare-handed. But always right beside the sink, so I had fast access to cold running water for cleanups and rinses.

    However one pkg I received, the nic had leaked out of the cap and into the sealed plastic bag, so just to open that, I put the gloves on, and kept them on till I had the bottle rinsed, the pkging discarded, and the contents transferred to another (glass) bottle -- I didn't want to take any chances there, with nic being all ove the place inside that bag, and I would definitely feel the same if I had any nic spill or mess to clean up. I am emetophobic, so high-strength nic exposure is not something I want to ever experience.

    I wear reading glasses pretty much 24/7, since I can't focus well on anything that's less than 3 ft from me, so I don't bother with goggles... however I do make sure to keep my face as far from the bottles as I can easily manage, to try and avoid splatters.

    Andria
     
  6. UncleRJ

    UncleRJ Will write reviews for Beer! Staff Member Senior Moderator VU Donator Platinum Contributor Member For 3 Years ECF Refugee Reviewer

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    I use a pair of large yellow dishwashing gloves that I get from the Dollar Store.as they are reusable and easy to put on and take off.

    After I am done using my nic, I seal the bottle and run it, along with the gloves (still on my hands) under cold water for a minute, then dry the bottle and the gloves with a paper towel before taking off the gloves and putting them away for the next time.
     

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