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I suppose it's a step in the right direction, but there's a good chance that the real reason they added this charging port was to save on battery size and cost.
After recording the video I discovered that there were four tiny components under the silicone sleeve around the USB-C charge connector. A decoupling capacitor, two resistors for enabling USB-C charging and a mysterious diode type component with an unreadable number.
For the technically inclined, the wires on the liquid reservoir could be extended slightly to facilitate refilling by wiggling the mouthpiece off and sliding out the reservoir to get the cap off for soaking in some more fruity fog juice. Care would have to be taken to avoid running the reservoir dry and burning the wick.
The functionality of the chip inside the pressure sensor case is quite high. It not only acts as a current limited charger with voltage cut-off, but also monitors the pressure switch and times the heater activation to avoid excessive run time due to failure or repeated false triggering of the sensor.
It can switch high current, possibly with thermal protection. It ramps the LED up with pulse width modulation, and can detect a low battery.
It may also detect a shorted heater or associated wiring.
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I specifically avoid using intrusive mid-run video adverts for a more relaxing viewing experience.
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11 thoughts on “Inside a disposable with charging port”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars ehsnils says:

    Next stage would be to require the customer to use a disposable CR123 or something.

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars LCARS43278 says:

    Hi Clyde! ๐Ÿ‘‹
    First time commentor, long time fan of your YT vids! ๐Ÿ‘
    I really hope you get to read this as well as the folks who watch your videos..

    I have worked in the retail sales and the "wetware" manufacturing end of this industry for about a decade as well as having dabbled in the tech service side of it too. I have been following you for a while and especially your recent tear-down videos of these atrocious disposable devices.
    This is one of those things that really makes me furious to see and was one of the reasons I left the industry over a year ago in disgust at what it had gone from to what it had become in that time.
    This is such a terrible shameful waste of resources only for the sake of convenience. People are willing to toss 15-20 quid away every couple days just for the convenience of not having to deal with filling, charging and changing elements on a more expensive but better quality system that would easily last 100x longer and be 3-4x cheaper to run and 50x less wasteful overall. ๐Ÿคฆโ€โ™‚๏ธ

    Worse yet, with the new regulatory framework (at least here in north America) it is making these incredibly wasteful devices more preferential to consumers vs the older style open systems that specialty stores were famous for. This is making the problem of e-waste in this industry even worse than consumer trends already have.

    We had a free recycling collection bin in our store and we only saw about 5-6% or 1 in 20 of the disposable devices we sold actually come back to us for recycling. About 1-2% of them were defective straight out of the package too.
    Putting a perfectly good rechargeable battery in a device and not even providing a way to recharge and refill it is just so damned wrong IMOn so I started personally collecting and processing those dead units on my own time to separate the plastics, metals, and electronics properly. I was testing the power cells out of curiousity and found about 85% of them were still perfectly fine unless they had been sitting for a long time or were physically damaged.
    During the pandemic lockdown era I ended up processing a little over 1200 of these "disposable" devices and that was just what I got in the few months worth collected from a chain of 3 local stores in one city, and remember that's only about 5% of the total units they sold in those months and there are two other competitive chain stores in town and countless other convenience store outlets selling astronomical numbers of these things every day. When you consider the scale of this travesty globally it is truly staggering to the mind. ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

    I had to stop doing it because I now have over a thousand various lithium cells that all work fine but I have no idea what to do with them or how to combine their small individual potentials in to something more practical. I have about 1.5KWh of potential energy just sitting in a thousand pieces in little bins labeled by form factor, capacity and internal resistance but there doesn't seem to be any cost effectiv way to integrate a bunch of these little cells in to some sort of mini powerwall or anything beyond little tinkery gadgets. The reliability of any array is inversely proprtional to the number of cells it is comprised of, so by the time you get enough of these things hooked up in any way to do something impressive with the total power, the probability of some failure occurring in that pack increases to almost 1 within the expected service life of any single cell, making it pretty unattractive and impractical.

    So, I wonder what your thoughts might be on how to get command and control of a whole bunch of little cells in a way that allows the true potential of them to be harnessed without creating a time bomb..? ๐Ÿค”

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ultrasonic says:

    I was wondering when you'd get one of these. I found one with an identical charging setup, but I'm anxious about using that to charge the battery long term because that little controller gets hot enough to burn you after even just a few minutes.

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Shawn ๐Ÿดโ€โ˜ ๏ธ Stafford says:

    I've bought a few of these "rechargeable disposable" N-bars. I decided to hack the lithium battery out of the 1st. I just refill the material inside & reuse them.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Dana MW says:

    I've tried looking through your videos before and couldn't find any but have you used these and turned them into a battery bank of some kind? If not I think that would be interesting using these cells and maybe even the housing with a 3d printed USB end for charging a phone.

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars says:

    Please go more in depth with this. I have collected a few of them, but I want to charge them and use the battery and charger that came with to replace devices that are intended for AA or AAA batteries

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars urbanws1234 says:

    LOL Addiction Sticks ๐Ÿ˜‚

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Peter Stevens says:

    Wonder if they sell them as a combo with a sketchy chinisum power supply? maybe a death dapter for bounus points.

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars d. t. says:

    Good luck. ๐Ÿ‘

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Mark Michalowski says:

    How much do these cost? Are they a neat way of getting a tiny, USB-chargeable battery for use in other projects, d'you think?

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jammit Timmaj says:

    Awwww. They were thinking of us.

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