From the Screwdriver DIY project to the Brunhilde RDTA – the development of the vaping community
A great community has developed around the e-cigarette in recent years, which exchanges ideas at regulars’ tables and in forums, actively helps to shape the development of hardware and liquids and is also politically involved, for example through petitions. These people – you – are what this article is about: The development of the vaping community!
Would you have thought that what was essentially the first battery carrier for e-cigarettes was not developed by one of the big manufacturers, but by an English inventor who called himself Trog? Surely many of you followed the release of the Brunhilde RDTA in 2019 with interest. This vaporizer was created at the instigation of over 100 vape enthusiasts who call themselves the German 103!
In a nutshell – history of the e-cigarette
As early as 1963, the American H.A. Gilbert applied for a patent for an electronic cigarette he had developed, which was never produced. 40 years should pass before the developer Hon Lik launched an e-cigarette on the Chinese market in 2004, which, however, worked with ultrasonic waves. The cartomizer developed by the English company Gamucci in 2006 can be considered the first e-cigarette to work according to the principle established today with a heated coil.
Trogs Screwdriver and Flashlight Mods
Even if the new product did not immediately spread like wildfire, it was enthusiastically received by many interested parties. However, for many vapers – even if they weren’t called that at the time, but e-smokers – the batteries provided by the manufacturers were often not enough. For comparison: in 2007 the Gamucci device was introduced to the English market. In early 2009, GrimmGreen, now one of the most active YouTubers in the vaping community with almost 400,000 subscribers, reviewed Trog’s Screwdriver: an electric screwdriver that had been converted to work with a cartomizer.
Have you ever wondered why the “mod” is called what it is called? The first mods were actually modified, rebuilt flashlights, screwdrivers or other electronic devices that could be powered by a removable battery! Of course, today, when powerful, controlled and regulated devices are available on the market, it seems reckless to try one’s luck with self-construction. Of course, Trog wasn’t a complete electronics rookie either. But one thing is exciting: The battery carrier for e-cigarettes, a product that is now established on the global market, does not come from the development laboratory of a large corporation, but from the workshop of a hobbyist!
Related Read:Why Vaping is NOT Getting the Youth to Smoke
Networking of the vaping community via regulars’ tables and internet forums
Ideas like those of Trog and other inventors spread on the one hand via regional vape get-togethers, which were initially organized in pubs or in private settings and which still take place today, meanwhile also in vape shops, and enjoy great popularity. Of course, the Internet with its numerous social media platforms also played a major role for the vaping community. Probably the best-known German forum was the e-smoking forum. The name seems outdated at a time when we all never tire of emphasizing that vaping is not smoking. However, the concept of steaming or vaping was simply not established when it was founded! By the way, the forum is now successfully continued with a more appropriate name as e-dampfen-forum. The diverse activities on the YouTube platform are also indispensable in the vaping community. Steamshots, the most successful German steam channel, has 121,000 subscribers today, operator Thomas Frohnert has published almost 700 video contributions since 2016.
From Euphrates to Brunhilde – vape hardware made by the vaping community
In the vaping community, it was and is stronger than in other industries that users who have good ideas for new products become manufacturers and entrepreneurs themselves, or work closely with large producers. Falk Wissendorf, the developer of the Euphrat RDA, which is legendary in the scene, was not originally an entrepreneur who wondered which product could work on the market, but a passionate vaper who wanted to build the best possible atomizer and make it available to like-minded people. His label Cloud Tip was created against this background. The fact that he was well connected in the vaping community and was able to draw on the knowledge of other vapers in addition to his own experiences is probably what made the Euphrates what it is to this day. Established international manufacturers are also happy to fall back on the expertise of the base.The most recent example of vaper-generated hardware might be the Brunhilde RDTA. At the beginning of 2018, the YouTuber Martin Hartkopf, also known as Dampfwolke 7, launched a call on Facebook for the joint development of a self-winding tank evaporator. Together with 102 fellow combatants, he formed the German 103, who spent a year tinkering, tinkering and developing the device. The Chinese manufacturer Vapefly was commissioned to produce the evaporator. The rest is history.
Vaping Is NOT Tobacco – political commitment
However, the commitment of the vaping community is not limited to products and devices alone. The e-cigarette – still often perceived by outsiders as new and perhaps unsafe – has not always had an easy time in social discourse, and it still does today. Committed users from the vaping community also contribute to raising awareness about vaping, which is less harmful than smoking. The petition by the European citizens’ initiative Vaping Is NOT Tobacco, which advocates sensible regulation of e-cigarettes independently of tobacco products, has been signed by almost 50,000 people across Europe to date. Individuals, such as the blogger Joey Hoffmann based in Monheim am Rhein with his blog vapers.guru, also contribute to the objective clarification of the topic with well-founded, well-researched background reports. When, in mid-2019, e-joints that were illegally marketed in the USA also caused a flood of negative reporting for e-cigarettes in Germany, the “vaping instead of smoking” initiative tried to deal with the incidents objectively.
According to Statista, around 3.7 million people used e-cigarettes regularly in Germany alone in 2017. The independent information portal Egarage speaks of 9 million active vapers in the USA and as many as 31 million US citizens who have tried the e-cigarette.
Summarizing the activities of all vapers worldwide in one report is simply impossible. We hope this short, spotlighted post nonetheless helps present the vaping community for what it is: a loose community of like-minded, interested, and committed people who share a passion for a great product and maybe contribute in one way or another infect their enthusiasm. Thank you all for being there!