Will your fake Samsung 25R battery explode? No.

I recently posted about fake 25R's using rewrapped Samsung 22P batteries which are rated at 10A and 2050mAh. This does not mean that fake 25R's will explode.

Original post: https://www.reddit.com/r/electronic_cigarette/comments/6tlhmi/fake_samsung_25r_alert/

Using these fake 25R's at above 20W-25W each or so will result in lots of voltage sag, short running time, higher operating temperature, and accelerated battery aging and performance loss but it typically takes a short-circuit to cause a battery to burst.

I recommend replacing any fake batteries you might have though. If you must use these fake Samsung 25R's then stay below about 20W-25W each (40W-50W in a 2-battery mod, etc.).

I do not know how hard you can use any other type of fake.

You are responsible for your own safety. I cannot know the condition of every one of these fakes. If the battery runs erratically or more than a bit warm do not use it. Use your best judgement and vape safely. Batteries are inexpensive and not worth taking any unnecessary risks with.

submitted by /u/Mooch315
<a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/electronic_cigarette/comments/6tqcbo/will_your_fake_samsung_25r_battery_explode_no/”>[link] <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/electronic_cigarette/comments/6tqcbo/will_your_fake_samsung_25r_battery_explode_no/”>[comments]

Thank you Golden State Vapor!!

I recently won a Golden State Vapor Give away. I received credit for 2 X 30ml of my choice, with the coupon code "GSV60" for 60% off. Well I have never tried them before (I have wanted to for a while) and I couldn't make up my mind, so I threw in a little extra cash and picked 4 flavors. Today my <a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/<a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/eliquid_c_7.html”>eliquid_c_7.html”>juice arrived and I was so surprised it looks like they upgraded me to some 60ml!!!! That was so awesome, but then I tasted the Crème Brulee and I realized I made a huge mistake…. I should have ordered 4 120mls of this stuff OMG! It's sooooo good. Once again thanks so much Golden State Vapor, I can't wait to try the rest!!!!!

Check them out they are cool people.. http://www.goldenstatevapor.com/

submitted by /u/CranmCorpsChemicals
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Blue Dot Vapors Potentially Non-Genuine Samsung 25r Batteries

Dear Blue Dot Vapors Customers,

It has recently come to our attention that some of the Samsung 25r batteries sold through our site may not be genuine Samsung 25r Cells. We received an email from a concerned customer, and decided to do our own investigation through our supplier and through an independent battery expert. In addition, we immediately suspended the sale of Samsung batteries. Today, we received the test results from our most recent purchase of “Samsung 25r “cells, and unfortunately for us and our customers THESE CELLS ARE NOT GENUINE.

It appears that we have received at least one batch of Re-Wrapped Samsung 22P Cells, which do not have nearly the performance of 25r’s. This represents a significant concern to us and to anyone pushing these cells to their discharge limits. We strive to carry only products that we stand behind, from reputable suppliers and are very disappointed in our supply chain at the moment, and that we have distributed these cells unwittingly to our lovely customers. We have worked with the same two suppliers for Samsung batteries since our hardware section opened, and until now have had no problems with non-genuine products.

As we do not have in house testing results for past batches of these cells, we do not know the full extent of this problem, but for safety sake, are urging our customers to carefully inspect any cells purchased from us in the past six months for authenticity (guide provided below).

As is our general policy, we feel that transparency is the best way to handle this situation and are writing this to inform our customers. If you believe that you have received a non-genuine cell from us, we urge you to cease use of this cell and return it to us for a full refund. It is possible that some orders will be too old to issue a cash refund through our online system and in these cases we will gladly issue a store credit. Please package return cells carefully and return to:

Blue Dot Vapors

738 Wilson Street

Santa Rosa, CA 95401

Please include your order number or full name so we can lookup your account and issue the refund/credit.

Emails/ Correspondence can be sent to: info@bluedotvapors.com

Edit: We've been getting some emails from customers worried that the batteries might explode or are inherently dangerous. We want to clarify that these cells are not inherently dangerous. These cells are rated for 10 amps of continuous use. As an example, if you were vaping a 0.5 ohm coil, at 50 watts, you would be using the battery at 10 amps. It would be perfectly safe. If you went with a lower Ohm coil and/or increased the wattage of your device, you would risk damaging the cell and potentially dangerous venting.

Many users vape at fairly low wattages and higher ohm devices, and are at less risk. Regardless, we are fully willing to refund any of these cells. We just want to put peoples mind at ease a little.

Here’s what we are going to and what we urge other vendors to do in the future:

1) Require individual batch testing from our suppliers, including a graph that tests our batteries against known genuine Cells.

2) Do our own independent batch testing to confirm our supplier’s tests for each battery purchase.

Again to our customers, we sincerely apologize for this situation, and are taking steps to ensure that this type of thing does not happen in the future. Safety and Authenticity are key to growing the Electronic Cigarette industry and in aiding public perception and acceptance. This situation has been a wakeup call for us, in that we can purchase products from very well reputed suppliers, but even so, as a small company, must take our own direct steps to protect ourselves and our customers from non-genuine products. While not throwing our suppliers directly under the bus, we have contacted them both and provided the results of our testing, and anticipate that they will make significant changes to their battery sales as well. If we receive non-genuine products in the future, we will be able to identify this through independent testing and will alert the public if we feel that they are intentionally misleading us or any other vendors. We urge other vendors to do their own independent testing of their batteries to make sure that they as well have not received 25R’s or any other cells that are not genuine. Thanks for reading and thanks to our dedicated customers, we appreciate you all very much. Special thanks to Mooch for all the great work he has done and continues to do for this community. Everything that you do is helping to build credibility and safety as this industry grows and changes.

-BDV

How to identify a Non-Genuine Cell as posted by Mooch

But here's how to spot these fake 25R's: – If there are any lines radiating out from the center of the venting disk under the top contact then the battery cannot be a 25R. There are four of these lines in the fakes, spaced at 90° intervals. If you see even one though, as they are hard to spot, the battery cannot be a 25R.

You can see the venting disk without unwrapping the battery but you'll need a bright light source and a magnifier is very helpful.

If you do not see any of these radial lines in the venting disk that does NOT mean that the battery is a genuine 25R. Other fakes might not have the lines.

If there is anything other than a "5" as the second character in the uppermost four-character code on the metal can, near the top, then the battery CANNOT be a genuine 25R. If it is a "2" then it's most likely a rewrapped Samsung 22P. You can see this code through the wrap.

If there are no codes on the metal can then it's a fake 25R. It might still be a Samsung but someone has washed off the codes.

The batch codes on the wrap CANNOT be used alone to detect these fakes as they might be genuine batch codes. The codes for the fakes I have are 2G22 and 2F34, located at the end of the second line of printing on the wrap. I want to say this again…these batch codes might be genuine and cannot be used as the only method to check for authenticity.

There might be other batch codes being used for these fakes. Do not assume that having a batch code other than 2G22 and 2F34 means you have a genuine 25R. Check the venting disk for radial lines.

Visually how to tell: https://imgur.com/a/F2SzC

submitted by /u/BlueDotVapors
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Alien Autopsy – Part 1 of (probably too many)

Introduction

Hello! I’m /u/BadConductor, and i’m here to take you through an autopsy of a failed SMOK Alien 220 Vape Machine.
I’m currently collecting dead, untrustworthy, and old or unused mods, doing a full teardown and failure analysis, and sharing my results (and pretty pictures) with the community. I hope that by doing this, I can help people be more confident in choosing new mods, and help steer people away from buying devices that have ongoing quality issues. My hope is that this will save people money, time, and stress as well as put pressure on manufacturers to be more diligent in the design and QA of their devices.

I am an engineer, doing circuit design, mechanical design, and failure analysis in my day job, and like it as a hobby as well. I understand that a lot of people may be put off by long, drawn out explanations of stuff that can be hard to understand, so it is my goal to keep things simple and readable for regular people. I’d like some feedback on this point, so if you would like more or less technical stuff in the future, let me know in the comments!

Now, lets begin.

Todays mod

The first mod i’m tearing down, is a purple SMOK Alien 220. I received this from a local B&M shop that did not wish to be named, but I can say that they are located in North Alabama.

Here’s some shots of the exterior

This mod was given to me with no indication of the failure mode. The exterior does not give any indication of a failure. The paint is faded/worn in the normal places (battery door mainly), with some small chips along the bottom edge. There are scratches on the screen, which would be consistent with the mod being placed in a pocket with other objects (keys, phone, etc). The battery door is slightly hard to open and close, but latches fine with a bit of force. No melting or other signs of battery venting inside the compartment. There are no missing screws.

The adjustment buttons on the front are nice and clicky, and the fire bar is still very tactile. The USB connector is solid and not damaged in any way. The 510 connector does not show any signs of <a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/<a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/eliquid_c_7.html”>eliquid_c_7.html”>juice leaking into the mod, and the center pin is springy. The mod does not have any identifiable smell to it, and is not sticky or wet.

Upon inserting fresh, fully charged batteries, there are no signs of life. The mod does not turn on, attempting to turn the mod on blindly, it will not fire (this rules out a dead screen issue). There is no temperature increase of the mod, no smoke or fire. I did not attempt plugging the device in to USB.

Disassembly

Removing the four small torx screws from the top panel, and the three torx screws from the inside of the battery compartment allows the mod to slide apart. I desoldered the negative wire for the 510 connector to make handling easier. Both the positive and negative connections were in-tact and well soldered with lead free solder. Wiring was kept short and tidy. battery wiring is a little bit small for my liking, but should be OK.

Taking a look at the metal case parts, the interior of the white accent piece that also holds the screen window and adjustment buttons is burned just above and to the left of where the screen would sit. Photo. Some of the paint has bubbled up and scorched. The plastic carrier is also melted and scorched in the same general area. This does not bode well.

PCB Inspection

Looking at the front of the board, I can immediately see why the mod would not power on. Above and to the left of the screen, next to the large current sense resistor, the board is burned, and starting to delaminate. You can also see that the heat was intense enough to actually melt a portion of the current sense resistor, which is a ceramic material. The heat also melted and scorched the plastic frame that holds the screen in place, and left scorching on the screen itself. Second view here.

Moving the screen out of the way, you can see the board delamination better, to the bottom right of the heat spreader. We can now see the microcontroller, a Nuvoton NUC220LE3AN. This is a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M0 with built in USB support, as well as a 7-input ADC for measuring current, voltage, resistance, etc. The circuitry below the screen looks good, with good solder joints.

Removing the heat spreader we can see the three high power N Channel MOSFETs made by DIOO, part number D04N03N. There is not a lot of information available from DIOO, but a quick search shows that they are fairly standard, sharing a part number with parts from other manufacturers (04N03N) which give a general absolute maximum rating of 25V 20A at 25°C (77°F). One of the MOSFETs is used for reverse polarity protection, while the other two are used for firing the atomizer. Under the heat spreader, there are also several ICs which appear to be control circuitry for the switching regulator that outputs power to the atomizer.

There is some leftover flux residue on the board, which is water soluble, which indicates that the board was not washed after soldering. At the bottom of the board you can see more flux residue, this time containing small solder balls. These solder balls would be the result of excess or spilled/dripped solder paste which ended up on the board before the reflow process which solders the components to the board. These solder balls can become dislodged from the flux, and rattle around the inside of the device, and are highly conductive. These can find their way in between pins of the microcontroller, and any other device and cause a multitude of problems. Washing the board would generally be done after reflow soldering, which would remove any flux residue and any trapped solder balls, and remove the chance of them causing issues.

The PCB is of decent quality, appears to be 4 layer. It is marked VIVI-98A ver1.2. There are a few areas which have missing solder mask, exposing bare copper below. Unfortunately they used either 1/2 oz. copper layers (PCB copper is rated, thickness-wise in ounces. It’s the resulting thickness of a certain weight of copper that is spread out over a 1 square ft. area). For the amount of power this mod is supposed to handle, I would have liked to see 1.5-2oz copper being used, at least on the outer layers. There is no conformal coating, so any liquid which finds its way onto the board is free to cause all sorts of problems. The MOSFETS are coated with a cured silicone potting and thermal adhesive (which I removed to view part numbers), which holds the heat spreader in place, so they are at least protected. In addition, there are no fuses on the board at all, so there is no stand-alone over-current protection.

Looking again at the failure point, we can see a trace to the right of the 5 gold plated connection points, which has lost its solder mask and is exposing the bare copper. It is connected to an NPN transistor (marked 1HC). The base (control line) of the transistor is connected to pin 5 of the microcontroller. I’m unsure of the function of this transistor, as the via that it connects to is destroyed and no longer has continuity to anything on the board, and was originally connected to a trace which is internal to the multi-layer PCB. I will verify the function when I tear down another alien which has a different failure. I do notice that there is a very small spacing between this trace (and via) and the ground plane directly next to it. As well as small spacing between the ground plane, and the VCC pin of the 5 connection points next to it.

There does not appear to be a standalone battery charging chip on the board, that I could locate, which seems to suggest that charging is controlled by the microcontroller, and thus the firmware that is installed on it. I would not recommend charging the device via USB, as any software lockup on the microcontroller can possibly lead to batteries being overcharged, or otherwise being charged in an unsafe manner. Testing done by /u/VapeyMcGyver on this mod also shows that once the cells are fully charged, it begins to float charge the cells, which not good practice with Lithium chemistry based batteries.

The USB port is mounted on it’s own carrier board, which is soldered to the back of the board. The port feels solid, but I would not trust it with any sort of even minor abuse. Also on the back of the board, you can see the power inductor (large black box near the power leads) for the switching regulator which outputs power to the atomizer. This part seems a bit undersized for a 220W device. The 510 positive wire is nice and thick, but again, the battery connection wires are not thick enough for my liking.

Theory Of Failure

It’s pretty hard to pin down the exact cause of the failure on this specific board. This one will be revisited for further inspection once I get around to tearing down a working (or differently failed) Alien 220. But I have a couple of theories.

Theory 1

My first theory on what caused this failure, involves the solder balls trapped in the flux residue at the bottom of the device. If one of the solder balls were to dislodge, possibly from a drop, setting it down a bit harder then usual, thermal cycling, etc it could find its way up towards the top of the device, where it could find a spot between the ground plane and the failed trace which was controlled by the transistor next to that 5 pin connector.

Previously I mentioned missing solder mask, If either trace was missing solder mask in this area, heat could cause a softening of any other solder mask and cause a short, which could also lead to arcs with the voltage and current involved during firing. If, perhaps, the trace connected to the transistor was connected to Bat +, an arc in this spot would short the batteries directly, causing the trace to heat up, and enough heat to melt the current sense resistor.

This theory doesn’t explain the damage on the other side of the current sense resistor though, near the negative output to the 510 connector. There is charring and loss of the solder mask along the edge all the way to the corner of the board. It also does not explain the shape of the melting on the resistor, which would be consistent with the main heat source being in the middle, on the edge of the resistor.

Theory 2: Electric Boogaloo

My second theory involves the current sense resistor itself. If a low quality, or under-rated resistor is used, during firing, the resistor could fail. The failure of the resistor, with a large amount of current moving through it, can strike an arc (just like what you would get from an arc welder) that can cause the resistor to melt, as well as heat up the surrounding material. As the arc eats away and vaporizes the conductive material inside the resistor, the arc would get longer, until it was too wide to sustain the arc. This would happen quite fast with the thin material inside the resistor, but if there is not a sufficient gap between the conductors beneath the resistor that the resistor is connected to, the arc could continue between the two copper traces below it, continuing the melting of the resistor, and the destruction of the material around it.

This does not completely explain the complete destruction of the trace connected to the transistor though, as it is far enough away from the current sense resistor that it shouldn’t be damaged in the way it is by the heat generated from an arc. Without being able to verify the connection of that trace, I can’t really say why it would be destroyed the way it was if this theory is true.

Theory 3

My third theory, involves parts of both my first and second theories. If the damaged transistor trace was connected directly to BAT+, and the current sense resistor failed in a way that it caused an arc, the heat from the arc, moving through the copper conductor, could have caused the soldermask on the transistor trace to fail. The proximity of the two traces would be close enough at the elevated temperatures present, to cause a secondary short and arc of the transistor trace to the ground plane, vaporizing the via, and causing the de-lamination of the copper layer of the ground plane in that area.

This theory is consistent with the damage seen on the board.

Final Thoughts

Not being able to track down the connection of the failed transistor trace, I cannot say for sure what the cause of the failure is. I’m leaning towards Theory 3, because of the extensive damage across the affected area. I will be revisiting this board in the future, after a few more Alien teardowns, and will update accordingly.

The Alien 220 seems to have a staggeringly large number of failures. I have had several offered to me already, and have seen far, far more reports of them dying. It’s hard to know if the massive amount of failures is a direct result of bad design, or bad quality control, or if it is a result of the massive popularity of the device. It could be that the failure rate of the Alien 220 is the same, or even lower than, the failure rate of less popular devices, but magnified by a larger number of devices sold and in the hands of the consumer.

Here is the full album of photos, for those who want to see the destruction in all of its glory.

<a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/ecigclassifieds/comments/6sye14/usal_h_paypal_w_your_deadbrokenold_mods_for/”>Here is the original thread requesting dead, untrustworthy, or otherwise unwanted mods. If you have a device that you would like to see featured in one of these teardowns, please consider donating it to the cause. See that thread, or PM me for details.

If you have any questions, comments, or theories of your own, feel free to add them to the comments below, i’d be glad to hear your thoughts.

submitted by /u/BadConductor
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Fake Samsung 25R Alert

There have been some very good fake 25R's popping up lately. Thanks to some fantastic members of this community who sent their fakes to me for testing I have some idea of what's going on.

Most of the fakes are identical in appearance and performance to the 10A 2050mAh Samsung 22P battery. This battery is a terrible performer compared to the 25R. One fake was much worse than all the others. It might have been a lower grade 22P or damaged during use before I received it.

But I have one fake that is different from the others. It has the metal can code for, I believe, a Samsung 29E. But the top contact structure seems wrong for the 29E. I don't know for sure what this fake actually is. It's performance is lousy compared to the 25R though.

Detecting the fakes: https://imgur.com/a/F2SzC

Discharge graphs: https://imgur.com/a/xnihF

One HUGE problem with these fake 25R's is that the top insulating rings are free-floating and not self-adhesive and glued down to the battery! This is the first time I have ever seen this. We can no longer say that a battery with a free-floating ring is genuine.

But here's how to spot these fake 25R's: – If there are any lines radiating out from the center of the venting disk under the top contact then the battery cannot be a 25R. There are four of these lines in the fakes, spaced at 90° intervals. If you see even one though, as they are hard to spot, the battery cannot be a 25R.

  • You can see the venting disk without unwrapping the battery but you'll need a bright light source and a magnifier is very helpful.

  • If you do not see any of these radial lines in the venting disk that does NOT mean that the battery is a genuine 25R. Other fakes might not have the lines.

  • If there is anything other than a "5" as the second character in the uppermost four character code on the metal can, near the top, then the battery CANNOT be a genuine 25R. If it is a "2" then it's most likely a rewrapped Samsung 22P. You can see this code through the wrap.

  • If there are no codes on the metal can then it's a fake 25R. It might still be a Samsung but someone has washed off the codes.

  • The batch codes on the wrap CANNOT be used alone to detect these fakes as they might be genuine batch codes. The codes for the fakes I have are 2G22 and 2F34, located at the end of the second line of printing on the wrap.

  • I want to say this again…these batch codes might be genuine and cannot be used as the only method to check for authenticity.

  • There might be other batch codes being used for these fakes. Do not assume that having a batch code other than 2G22 and 2F34 means you have a genuine 25R. Check the venting disk for radial lines.

That's all I have for now.

If you do have any fakes I recommend not using them at all. Contact the vendor you purchased them from to see what can be done.

Please do not send me pictures of your 25R's to authenticate them. I am unable to do so via photographs.

Hoping your 25R's are genuine!

A followup post: <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/electronic_cigarette/comments/6tqcbo/will_your_fake_samsung_25r_battery_explode_no/”>https://www.reddit.com/r/electronic_cigarette/comments/6tqcbo/will_your_fake_samsung_25r_battery_explode_no/

submitted by /u/Mooch315
[link] [comments]

Native Wicks Organic Cotton is The Way to Go!

Vapers know more about the world of
vaping than ever before. And there is now a competition of who makes the best
parts for different devices, such as the wick. One of the things vapers enjoy
purchasing here at <a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/Native-Wicks-Organic-Cotton_p_2511.htm”>Vapin’
in the Cape is Native Wicks Organic Cotton, and there are several reasons
why:

Different Wicking Material

Wicking material started with silica
as that was the only real material option at the time. Fast forward to today,
and there are different brands of cotton available as well. Now the organic
cotton is trying to make a break for the market. It is specifically created for
vaping. You get about 36 inches in a packet. It is immaculate and pure. The
company puts a lot of work into each package, making sure it looks pristine. It
is a show of quality. Sometimes you get a little bit of cotton plant stuck into
the cotton, but this is very clean.

Made from Pima cotton, which is the
longest and lightest cotton you can get. The company puts a lot of effort in
the product, and it is better for vapers. You can easily use it in your RDA,
and it is simple to separate and work with. There is no real breaking period in
flavor. Other cotton starts slowly break down under the heat. When you are
putting it in and put in your coils, you should pack it in quite tight, because
otherwise, it won’t work properly. The flavor simply won’t be right. If you are
using an RDA, it will take you a bit of work to put the wick in. However, its
durability and the enhanced flavor will be perfect for it.

Better Performance

Because of its structure, you should
have no problem segmenting it as necessary. Now, when you get to the vaping
experience itself, there are a couple of things this product does better than
alternatives. It holds the liquid the same way others do, but it transfers it further
up the strands. And it ”picks” the <a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/<a href="http://www.vapininthecape.com/eliquid_c_7.html”>eliquid_c_7.html”>juice up from the well much better, resulting
in a stronger flavor. It also works well for sub-ohm vaping purposes. Note: There
will be a dry hit now and then because of the type of high-quality vape cotton being
used. However, there will not be any burnt after taste that follows the flavor
when the wick needs changing.

All the bonuses listed above will
also allow you to enjoy flavor-chasing and improved performance in cloud competitions.
Optimal settings and Native Wicks Organic Cotton will have the effect.

Final Thoughts

This product so far has proven to be
worth it. It is a little more expensive than its counterparts, but the bonuses
you get out of it are worth it.