Published on June 20th, 2013 | by scarf-ace19
How to Brew Your Own Tobacco E-liquids
Hi, I’m Scarf-Ace, and I’m an E-liquid addict.
Well, of course I’m an addict. That’s why I vape. But I love trying new juices, figuring out the shades of flavor, comparing it to other juices, and so on. Probably my favorite category of E-liquids is NETs, or natural extracted tobaccos. That is, juices that are flavored with tobacco extracted by the maker. It does NOT mean juices that are flavored with tobacco absoute, which is a commercial product designed originally for the fragrance industry. Tobacco absolute (TA) is an extremely potent and resinous liquid. Adding it judiciously to liquids gives a leafy, greenish, ashy taste that can be mighty convincing. Unfortunately, it usually isn’t used judiciously, and juices with an excess of TA can often taste like you’re gnawing on a plank of wood.
NET produces an E-liquid that usually brings to mind a fine pipe or cigar tobacco, rather than a cigarette. It is not (usually) a burning taste. On ECF’s E-liquid forums, about once a week a new vaper will post a topic such as “What tastes exactly like a Marlboro/Camel/Dunhill/etc.?” The correct answer, unfortunately, is “nothing”. No E-liquid, when vaporized, will give you the exact same sensation and taste as burning tobacco. However, you can get a fair approximation by vaping NET, and if you are a tobacco lover (not merely an ex-smoker), you will find a whole world opened up to you when you explore NETs.
Some of the most popular vendors of NET e-liquids include Heather’s Heavenly Vapes, Ahlusion, WantVape, House of Liquid, The Plume Room, Mountain Oak Vapors, Goodejuice, and QuickNicJuice. However, if you want to try DIYing some yourself, it’s not as difficult as you might think.
Here is what you will need:
A slow cooker (yard sales and thrift shops are excellent sources)
A good-quality pipe tobacco, RYO tobacco, or cigar. This cannot be emphasized enough. Don’t try disemboweling your leftover cigarettes for this…the result will be nauseating. Most cigarettes contain nasty additives that we switched to vaping to avoid.
A pack of unbleached paper coffee filters
Several coffee mugs or mason jars
Disposable latex gloves
Propylene glycol and vegetable glycerine
Unflavored nicotine liquid
1. Chop the cigar into fine shreds, or shred the tobacco. You will want about 15mg, or about the amount in one Churchill-sized cigar. Place in a mug or jar.
2. Cover the tobacco with 60mls of PG, VG, or your preferred combination. Mix until an ugly sludge forms.
3. Place the mug in a slow cooker which you have half-filled with water.
4. Cover the slow cooker and cook on “low” overnight.
5. In the morning, turn the cooker off and let the sludge sit and cool. Some condensation will enter the sludge: this is normal and desirable.
6. Repeat steps 4-5 for two more nights. Your sludge should be dark and fragrant by this point.
7. Place a funnel over a tall jar. Line the funnel with a paper coffee filter.
8. Strain the sludge through the coffee filter. It may be necessary to put on a disposable latex glove and squeeze handfuls of the wet leaves. This is gross, but if you are in the right frame of mind, also kind of fun.
9. Repeat step 8 at least 3 more times. If you have used a high proportion of VG in your extraction, this will take longer. It is not unusual for an all-VG extraction to take days to strain through the filter. The more you strain, the fewer particulates will remain to clog your atomizer.
You now have approximately 60 mls of high-quality tobacco flavoring concentrate. The nicotine content is minimal, possibly 2-3 mg/ml.
10. Dilute this concentrate as desired with unflavored nicotine juice. If you are math-challenged, there are several E-liquid calculators on the web to help you with proportions. A good starting point is 20% flavoring, but depending on your preferred flavor strength, you might like it as high as 50%.
11. Decant, shake, and age for two weeks or as long as desired.
CONGRATULATIONS! You have made your very own artisan NET juice. Vape and enjoy!
Lead photo by Chad Stockfleth