Catalyst limited launch: Thursday 3-26-2015 at 5pm CDT.

Today at 5pm I’ll be posting an item listing on SteamMonkey.com for the Catalyst. The way this will work is there are going to be 10 units “in stock”, we will doing full customization on these. You can pick the spacer style (open or closed), the battery size (350 or 650), and the color of the spacer, body, and door. We will ship within a week of your order.

Once these 10 are gone, we’ll be putting them together and I’ll put another list up.

The initial colors will be or ‘stock’ colors. In the not too distant future, we will be offering exotic colors/types of plastic. Things like glow in the dark, temperature sensitive color change material, 3d printed “wood”, “stone”, and “metal”. These will be limited quantities and a separate item listing, you’ll be able to go to the exotics item listing and choose that special option along with the standard stock colors. These will be hit and miss as the filament isn’t always readily available and some of them are sort of a pain in the ass to produce so we can’t make a lot of them, quickly. Think of it as a flavor of the week/month/whatever time frame SteamMonkey manages to pull out of his ass ;) There will be no rhyme or reason to the order in which they get posted, when one particular one returns or if it even does. It all depends on what we’re feeling at the time and how much you guys request specific exotics after we start releasing them.

But… if you don’t care about the exotics and just want to get your hands on one of this years already hottest little boxes, tonight’s your chance. Like I said earlier, there will be 10 available slots going live at 5pm. I will get another set ready as soon as possible after that!
We are ramping up full production on these and offering them in wholesale, so expect to see the availability get at least a little better in the very near future. That said, this is a completely made in the USA device, all of the main parts are designed in house and we actually print every plastic part (except the delrin chunk in the very middle) in house. We are ramping it up as fast as possible but quality control and giving personal attention to each and every new owner of the Catalyst is paramount to us. This device is the first step in a much larger plan for modular, expandable, and customizable personal vaporizers, it’s named the Catalyst for a reason :)

Below you’ll see some new shots depicting various options and configurations, as well as all of the “stock” colors we’ll be offering. Tiffany Blue might end up on the Exotic list so… if you’re really into that one, better try to get em now before they get bumped over to exotic.

 

 

 

CatalystExamples
Bottom Left: Catalyst (18650), Open spacer. Bottom Right: Catalyst (18650), Close Spacer, multi colored. Top: Catalyst Mini (18350) Closed spacer.

 

CatalystStockColors
Color options Left to Right: Red, Black, Green, Blue, Orange, Tiffany Blue, Pink.

 

The Catalyst Box by SteamMonkey: Preview.

You’ve probably seen it sneaking around on instagram and facebook… tiny little 3d printed box, rumors of color change and glowing cases…

Well, here’s a bit of a teaser.

The Catalyst is based on a modular framework that we designed specifically for mechanical boxes. The “skeleton” of the mod can be arranged for multiple form factors. Initial launch will be parallel mechanical.

The box will be initially released in 18350 and 18650 sizes. We will offer 18490 in limited runs and for special order to wholesale accounts.

The skeleton itself is comprisef of stainless steel, brass, and copper. The negative battery contacts are silver plated Beryllium Copper springs, connected to the stainless steel base plate with brass screws. The “case ground” is handled by brass rods running from the base plate up to the top plate. The positive battery contacts are machined solid copper plates with large surface area contact, the switch itself is a 6mm copper rod that connects both of the heavy copper plates to complete the circuit. This switch can handle more than our batteries can provide. The 510 connector is a Fat Daddy V4. All connections are purely mechanical, there isn’t a single dab of solder in the entire device.

The skeleton on it’s own is a functional mod… sort of. The batteries would be naked, and while naked is fun, it can also be dangerous. So we make it some clothes, in house, with our 3d Printers. This means there can possibly be some artifacts from the 3d printing process, the cases are not perfectly smooth. Personally, I prefer the texture of a 3d printed box. All of them are being made with ABS. The 3d printing process does, however, offer us a lot of flexibility in design. We are going to be offering full customization in color choice right from the beginning. In the pictures below you’ll see colored parts, the “spacer” which goes between the top plate and the black delrin piece that holds the contacts and switch body, the main body, and the door. Spacers come in 2 varieties, open and closed. Open spacers expose the switch column and 510 head inside the device which gives it a great industrial look. Closed spacers are solid and hide all the inner workings. When you place an order, you’ll be able to select the color and style of the spacer, the color of the body, and the color of the door. We currently have 10 materials available, not all will be available all the time. There will be ‘stock’ color options and some special run colors that we’ll make available in small batches once every couple of weeks.

Stock colors include: Red, Blue, Black, Natural (sort of off white), Green, Tiffany Blue, Pink, and Orange.

Special run colors include: Color change Purple to Pink, Color change Gray to White, Color Change Green to Yellow, and Glow in the dark (green glow, white appearance in the light).

We will be offering some random ‘special’ cases when we have time to print fun stuff. We will also be releasing other form factors and options as things progress.

The Catalyst is the 18650 parallel mechanical version. With Samsung 25R batteries, you’re looking at upwards of 50amp and 5000mAh.
The Catalyst Mini is the 18350 parallel mechanical version. With our Tensai 18350 batteries (14amp each) you’re looking at 28amp and 1400mAh. That’s down to a .2ohm build on a seriously tiny box.

These will be available for retail on http://steammonkey.com “soon”. If you’re a shop owner or a wholesale distributor and are interested in these products, shoot me an email and we’ll discuss. These will be widely available for wholesale and we are seeking distribution from an established wholesale distributor. Previously we handled all our own wholesale but at this point in the companies development, my time is better suited to design and manufacture than wholesale logistics.

Not all colors are represented below. Stay tuned for some more glamour shots next week. (FYI: these are early production cases, not “final” product.)

stockcolors
Stock colors (minus Orange and Pink)
openspacer
Open Spacer style.
closedtop
Closed Spacer style.

 

Just in: In’Ax 16mm, Aspire ESP30, and the IPV2 Mini 70w.

Howdy, All.

 

Just added a few new toys to the shop. I’ll also be putting out some info on the new Catalyst Box by SteamMonkey in the very near future.

Added today:

The In’Ax 16mm from Athea Mods: Tight little micro Genesis atomizer with a unique coil build set up. Super flavor and AFC.

 

The Aspire ESP30. 30w, Carbon Fiber, looks great with the Atlantis or other 22mm Atomizers! Easy ‘dial’ for adjusting wattage.

 
The IPV Mini V2 70W

Living with the Kanger Subtank, 1 week in.

So, I listed the Kanger Subtank Mini and Subtank Nano last week. I normally do some exhaustive testing of a product before I put it up on the site but this time I just listed porksodaem as soon as they came in. Primarily because I had plenty of demand and a lot of good info from trusted sources, so I felt comfortable just slapping them up. BUT.. I still had to do my own personal testing.

Over the last week, I’ve used the Subtank Mini exclusively. Aside from 1 or 2 bouts of “play vaping” with one of my drippers, I haven’t consumed nicotine from any source other than the Subtank Mini (STM for the rest of this). I was using the Atlantis as my primary atomizer prior to this and was deeply in love with the thing. Now, I’m feeling polyamorous.

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Twotonian Parallel boxes. Power AND Longevity.

While I was online only, I never wanted to be ‘out of stock’ on anything. If a supplier couldn’t keep up with my stores demands, I simply found a product to fill that gap that could. What that ended up meaning is that I carried very few “unicorn” type devices. I never picked up high end gear that was list based or only run in limited numbers.

After I opened my B&M, I decided it was time to branch out a bit and start picking up some of the harder to get stuff that might not necessarily be “Always in stock”.

The piece I’m here to talk about today is one of my favorite personal devices, the Twotonian Parallel 18650 Box mod.
If you read my Monkey University on parallel vs series batteries, you’ll already know why this thing kicks some serious tail. With the power of 2 18650s in there you can run for a VERY long time without having to worry about your batteries dying or you can crank out some serious power. With 2 Samsung 25R’s in this box, its got 5000mAh and is capable of 40-50amp continuous discharge and bursts that will make a coil straight up cry tears of thick, billowy vapor.

My personal attachment to it is the longevity. Running a run of the mill .5ohm coil, I’ll go through a day and a half (20-25ml of eliquid) before I even notice a decrease in performance due to the batteries getting low. Slap em on the charger and they both read at 3.4-3.5v so they were never pushed too far. I’m hardly exercising the batteries power potential at all with a .5ohm coil so it’s just easy street.

Now, for playing around… Continue reading

The Kanger SubTank Mini and Nano are live.

Quick update time.

I just stocked the Kanger Subtank Mini, Kanger Subtank Nano, and the Kanger Subtank OCC coils at http://steammonkey.com.

Personal thoughts: They’re pretty good, better than the Atlantis? Not sure… I personally prefer the Atlantis because of the aesthetics, the performance is pretty much identical. The Atlantis feels more solidly built to me, but the value you get with the Kanger Subtank is pretty hard to ignore when you factor in the rebuildable head and slightly lower price point. The Mini is solid and looks great on 22mm mods, the Nano is just cute, decent capacity, and hits just like it’s bigger brother. Ultimately, great little devices and will become a permanent fixture at SteamMonkey.

 

porksoda

Monkey University Reboot: Parallel vs Series batteries.

This is the first installment of the Monkey University Reboot. I won’t have a schedule for these, it’ll be more of a “As I come up with topics to discuss” type of situation. Today’s topic: Parallel vs Series battery configurations.

A lot of devices out, and coming out, are utilizing more than 1 battery. Some are running in Parallel and others in Series. Let’s lay a little ground work.
Parallel configuration means you’ve got all of the negative terminals on one side and all of the positive terminals on the other. I.e. you connect the negative side of all of the batteries to one another and to the ground or negative terminal of your circuit (or mod), and you connect the positive terminals of all of the batteries together and then connect that to the positive terminal of your circuit (or mod).

Series configuration has the batteries in.. well, in series. You have the circuit’s negative connected to one battery’s negative terminal, then you ‘stack’ the batteries. The battery that is connected to the negative terminal will connect it’s positive terminal to the negative terminal of the next battery and that will repeat until you’ve got the number of batteries you want in the chain and then the positive terminal of the last battery connects to the positive terminal of your circuit. Think about a maglight or any other flashlight that uses multiple batteries in a tube stacked on top of each other. This is a series configuration.

*** Important note: Always use identical batteries when using multiple in series OR parallel. It’s important that the batteries are the same make, model, mAh, voltage, etc. It’s best if they are both the same age as well, as in, pair 2 batteries at birth and keep them together.  For the sake of the rest of this post, I will be assuming we are using matching, 3.7v batteries.***

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SXMini by Yihi now available.

If you know what the SXMini is and what it does, feel free to skip the rest of this and just head over HERE to pick one up or swing by the store if you’re in the area. If you don’t… read on, cause this is a fantastic device with a lot going on.

sxmini (1)

Yihi is a company in China that makes a lot of the chips you find in various variable wattage devices. The SX350, SX130, SX330, etc. Until now, they’ve never made an actual ‘device’. I believe they were waiting until they could do it right… and boy did they. The SXMini feels premium as soon as you open up the box. The build quality and craftsmanship are just fantastic. It’s unfortunate that we’re conditioned to automatically feel like if something came out of China that it’s going to be cheaply made and poorly crafted. There are plenty of cases where that is true, but Yihi has really raised the bar with this product.

The SXMini is powered by the SX350-Mini chipset. It’s capable of 60w on a single 18650 battery as long as it’s a good quality 18650 like our Samsung 25Rs. But more than that, it has a bevy of interesting and useful features. Aside from the normal stuff like Micro USB charging and the ability to step up, or down the voltage to provide a wide range of wattages regardless of atomizer resistance, it also comes with 5 memory settings for your various wattage level needs. You can set all 5 memory settings to different wattage levels and quickly switch between them depending on your taste. Beyond that is the new “modes” they’ve programmed into the chip. Soft, Standard, and Powerful.

The modes sounded silly to me at first, but once I started playing with the thing and swapping some atomizers around, I found that they really take the vaping experience to the next level. I don’t mean the next power level, I mean the next level of control and refinement.

Standard mode is what you’d expect, you set the device to 40w and it fires at 40w. It’s clean and consistent.

Soft Mode will start out below your defined wattage and then ramp up to the setting you have currently. This creates an interesting experience as the coil starts off a little cooler and heats up during your draw, the impact it has on flavor is pronounced. If you’re vaping a more complicated juice, like Black Cloud or NannerBear running in soft mode will bring out nuances of the flavor that you don’t normally pick up and the contour of temperature makes certain liquids really shine and take on a whole new level of complexity.

Powerful mode is also pretty nice, as you can probably guess, it starts out higher than your current defined setting then cools down to your setting. Where this really shines is surface area builds and heavy gauge wire builds. If you’ve got a coil set up that takes a little while to warm up, using powerful mode will jumpstart the coil to operating temperature and really give you that punch. This means you can use a thicker wire and build a higher resistance coil to get massive surface area on the heating element and kick it into life right from the start. After playing with it a bit myself, you can get some serious flavor production with this setting in a RBA.

Ultimately, I’m impressed with this product. You can click that link above for the full range of features on the product page. Needless to say, the thing is worth every penny. Yes, you can get a big clunky box that puts out more raw power, but the refined experience and build quality in this device is just a cut above any of the other variable devices coming out of China right now.