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Another video on restricted advertising for being about a vaping device. (Despite not actually promoting vaping.)
While buying further disposable vapour devices for technical exploration, I got a larger capacity one to see if it had a decent rechargeable lithium cell inside.
The first one I got had malfunctioned horribly inside the packaging and purged out a large amount of its glycol schmoo into the sealed plastic wrapper.
Instead of returning it to the shop (I hate doing stuff like that), I decided it would be much more fun to take it to bits and see what had gone wrong.
Spoilers below:-
The unit had been triggering repeatedly inside the packaging, and had basically turned the liquid into vapour that had then recondensed outside the device.
The lack of airflow as it did so and the repeated false triggering had effectively used most of the liquid from the absorbent carrier material and then self destructed the heater by burning the wick material.
Given that these things ship with a fully charged lithium cell, it makes me wonder if it could have been worse. As it is, the cell still had a safe level of charge and happily took a further charge suggesting it is a fully rechargeable cell. Such a waste in a disposable device.
This device was also notable for containing liquid that did not have benzoic acid in it, which is added to "high profile industry brand devices" to try and get closer to the addiction level as their combustible versions. It must make them distraught that they have to actually list the ingredients.
As with all these devices the most toxic components are probably the flavourings. And this unit contained air freshener grade levels. But still a safer option for existing users of the old combustible type.
I don't know why I'm being so cryptic here. It'll probably get demonetized anyway.
If you enjoy these videos you can help support the channel with a dollar for coffee, cookies and random gadgets for disassembly at:-
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an interesting malfunction that's well worth investigation while i was back in glasgow i was browsing in shop windows and i saw a vapor producing device that is a disposable version that had a much higher capacity than normal it was rated for 1 600 puffs as they say and i thought that'll be interesting to open up and see the construction inside and what size of battery it uses and if it's rechargeable spoiler it is rechargeable and when i actually took out the packet the first one i bought this is the second one was this uh it was a yellow one sort of like a pastel yellow like old 1960s laundromat machines and when i took it out the box it was in a sealed plastic package and it was full of liquid at the bottom and i was thinking oh no that's probably gone through all the electronics and how did it get out in the first place it must have leaked from the tank and i gave it a puff to see if it worked and got banana flavor but no action so i thought well i could take it back to the shop or i could just take it to the bench and take it apart and what i found was really interesting because initially i was thinking this is the what's inside it i was thinking what has gone wrong here that's uh because this is a wicking material it's not like a pure liquid tank and i was trying to work out how the liquid had somehow got out of that it turns out it got out by vaporizing in the packet the unit was actually triggering the packet and the reason for that is because at some point liquid has contaminated the little sensor at the bottom here and i can show you that because i managed to catch it in video so i'll show you that now so the unit is now misbehaving it's flickering the output to the heat element uh and one of two things will happen it will either just clear itself and then it will fade back out again but it would be running the heat element at low power at the moment i don't know how it's doing this it's gone up to full power it'll either clear or after a certain time delay it will go into a sort of standby mode if the puff duration is exceeded and it flashes led so it's done that but then it will re-trigger itself so this is the problem watch your eyes the light is coming back the light is back and i've also taken this module apart so let's explore it i shall zoom down on here so we can see it in greater detail the little sensor consists of a metal shell it looks a bit like a microphone electric microphone but in reality it's just a ground metal shell and it's got a physical membrane sensor in it to detect pressure differential the circuit board in the bottom has a chip and a little decoupling capacitor on the inside of it signs of corrosion around here this is a clear as what's going on here and there's also a metal ring around the outside on the back of it are the three wire connections and an led just for this of like the i am active and status types of modes so sitting on this metal ring here which is a center ring is a little metal cylinder with a metallized filament top and if you look inside the outer metal sleeve here which is grounded then there's a plastic separator here on the outside and then there's a little red washer here that keeps this membrane away from the metal front when you draw air a pressure differential air is drawn in through these little vent holes and it pulls that diaphragm up until it touches that and that effectively connects that gold centering to the uh sense input pin it's connected to the sense and it connects it to the sort of the general ground via the contact to the membrane with that that then turns on the led it also turns on the heater which is this little coil here sat down into this slot in a fiberglass sleeve and that would normally have a little cotton wick through it the cotton wick is gone i've never seen that before it's literally finished the liquid that it could get and then it's uh burnt the cotton wick away so quite a lot has been going on in there um this other sleeve is for sliding down it's a slightly bigger sleeve you close this up and then it slides down to lock it in place i shall show you the inside of that membrane thing i've taken the little chip out i shall zoom down a little bit more because it's even smaller so here is the chip which is an sy312640 that did not come up with anything in google there's the tiny little capacitors across it it's microscopic so here's the circuit board the outer grounded metal shell there's the uh plastic spacer that uh at the side the metal tube that goes up with the membrane across the top and then there's a space that keeps away from the front when you pull a pressure differential there are a couple little vent holes through here that let your sort of circulate in and out just to give equalization of pressure when a pressure differential is detected in that direction it effectively just domes that up until it touches that and that then signals to the chip that a puff of air has been taken interestingly i thought because it was wet i thought liquid had bridged up to this the membrane to the outer shell that was a problem but it's not because i took the circuit board i took the whole thing apart but then i reconnect again saying that'll be the fault clear no it wasn't it was triggering again and uh it turns out that there was flux and shmu all over this i think it was just a connections bridging possibly e-liquid getting in onto the circuit board and actually bridging the pins but the chip itself is very simple it's got that little capacitor across it it's got positive negative it's got the sense input that just gets effectively grounded to the negative rail and then it's got the led output with current limiting and then the heater output which does not have so much current limiting uh and they're controlled by well just a dedicated chip a chip that seems to have been around a long time on the other side we just got the three wires tacked on and the led it's very interesting a very intriguing way it's failed i've just poured that little chip off so let's take a look inside this it comes with uh the plastic sleeve on either end and if i just smack off my hand because i have already broken the glue seal here's the construction we have the double pin we've got a little absorbent mat for absorbing any spillage which i thought that was odd it's definitely come out as vapor from another unit it's got the wicking material with the heating element and it's got a lithium rechargeable battery in it rated 850 milliamp hour and i have tested this uh it took a charge no problem nps 17350 so 17 millimeter diameter i presume in 35 millimeters long let's use the calipers to check that roughly 17 millimeters diameter yes and about 35 millimeters long yes good enough and the little uh integrated circuit this is normally taped in with a sellotape wrap around the outside uh but the little integrated circuit well the little control module is just tacked in with glue just down the base there and that's what does all the sensing and powers up these pins interesting very similar to the geek bar type device very modular such a waste you use it the lithium cell is rechargeable but you use it until it's run out of juice or power and then you bin it that's not great is it interesting construction if you wish you can refill it and recharge it you can't recharge it via these pins which is a shame some of them you can uh because the chip is the standard chip used in the rechargeable types but uh you can basically hot wire onto the battery if you wish and uh with a suitable current limited supply capped at 4.2 volts as for this uh you can basically just uh well either to refill this it's probably easier just to take the silicone thing out the end and just squirt drops of your favorite nicotine said that word or not uh liquid down the side so it soaks in and uh that would be it refilled if you wanted to do that if you wanted to be ecologically minded and recycle it or better still just get yourself a proper one that is designed to be refilled easily but it's interesting certainly uh this one is notable unlike some of the well this one for instance this one contains benzoic acid the tobacco industry is doing that a lot they call it nick salts uh in reality they're adding a bit of acid to it to increase its uh nick that stuff that that drug stuff that people take uh it's so hard not to say it when you're talking about things that this youtube does not like that it'll probably demonetize the video anyway but this one actually ingredients didn't list that and when i tried it there was no sensation that biting the sensation you get from the more aggressive substances although it claimed to have the same sort of level of the plant extract but that's it that is interesting never seen a feel like that before where one has basically emptied itself re-triggering inside the package and it makes me wonder how many in that box done that but it's kind of fascinating that these things can go wrong and it will it makes me wonder what risk was there of it going on fire it kind of burned clear but there was still some liquid left in here that probably absorbed some of that effect and stopped it going any further but there we go interesting very unusual failure.

17 thoughts on “Did this pose a fire risk?”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Pp Ss says:

    I was going to say you could call it the N word, but that's already taken… Perhaps the "Nic"?

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars british fireworks says:

    I would love to see a video on the elf bars!! They are one of the most popular disposable vapes I wonder how safe they are or what quality of components they use and how good the cells are I see them everywhere all over the floor in my city it’s such a waste another great video Clive!

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ian Darley says:

    The refuse trucks in our area have now changed to a rotating drum like a reverse cement mixer due to the fires caused by discarded batteries in the old hydraulic compactor types of truck.

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars andrew prettyquick says:

    I just charged one of these e-cig batteries (the small round one) and forgot about it for about 90 minutes. then it re entered my awareness, quite suddenly and with a fair shockwave, blast radius, molten lump of toxic lava, deafening report and small fire, through to the floorboards, smoke alarm, terror, ringing in ears and perhaps divine intervention as I received no shrapnel wounds.

    Charge one on 5v @ an amp until failure – quite interesting, certainly needs a safety warning. – I meant to give it 20 minutes~ a multimeter would be pretty useful.

    My bottle has gone, I will buy a proper lithium charger.

    Really Really – could you make the safety video on this, they are very explosive.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars j swails says:

    Dangerous and naughty lol. You are delightful

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars sagi's stuff says:

    just more e-waste. can only hope consumers quickly switch to reusable if they use these

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Tim Gooding says:

    Clive have you thought of looking into a "reuasable" vape?

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars hempbear says:

    That's a cute little landfill igniter 😀
    It's amazing how much unnecessary waste gets legally produced while they're banning plastic straws.

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Michael Reis says:

    There are also vapes for CBD, if you want to not be demonitized while discussing the liquid inside

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars plaws0 says:

    Good lord, what a horrible product! And I don't even mean that it's a drug delivery device! Non refillable and you throw away a cell that is nowhere near the end of its life. Awful.

    Oh, and it might CATCH FIRE.

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Kevin Hardisty says:

    Interesting device. What a fire hazard, even in your pocket. Its a shame you can't just talk about the device.

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Barry Ducote says:

    Absolutely a fire risk. In the U.S., you can mail lithium batteries (with restrictions) and you can fly with them (with restrictions), but there are still incidences of fire.

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars DC Allan says:

    Looks very wasteful, I can just see 100s of them in landfill with batterys that are still viable.
    Ineresting fault, gret video 2x👍

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars James Margarson says:

    The "active alkaloid" is used in it's salt form as it is more rapidly absorbed by the body giving users a more intense hit than the unadulterated stuff. I tried it once in my homebrewed juice and it was far more intense at the same concentration that I normally use in my recipes and was thoroughly unpleasant.

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars kiefac. says:

    Huh, didn't know the salts were manufactured by combining the base with an acid. I always assumed they had just taken the salts directly out of the… plant matter… since websites that talk about it say that it's the form that's found in nature. I suppose it's probably cheaper and easier to make it that way, just buy some base and have your lab boys add a little acid to it, rather than getting some deal with the base purifiers to yank some of their impure product partway through the production line, test it, pack it up into separate containers… etc

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Gregory Thomas says:

    You could probably use a more "safe" term like St. Nick for a replacement word

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars AMDRADEONRUBY says:

    Nice a 1 AM Clive video gift to me before going bed!

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