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Introduction: Make a Custom Box Mod (e-cig)

By petercd
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About: general bloke type of tinkering More About petercd »

A box mod is the battery box which powers the atomizer in an e-cig device. I refer to my mod as a hybrid boxfet, in that Im using a mechanical button, which is glued onto an aluminium rivet. The rivet end presses a lever style micro switch soldered on the gate of a IRLB3034 mosfet which does the heavy duty current carrying.

This is an unprotected mod, meaning there are no electronics monitoring excessive current draw which can switch off power under fault conditions.

Woodworking Planshow to Woodworking Plans for Safety was my first design consideration and the final product doesnt get hotter than 35 deg C.

  • Never leave box mods in a parked car in the sun, interior temps can soar creating a dangerous environment for your device.
  • Never use a battery not designed for ecigs, ie laptop low drain types, my Efest 18350 can do 10.5A continuously.
  • Never use a switch for the main power that cannot handle the max rated battery current.
  • Always use internal wiring that can safely handle the batteries max rated current.
  • Best practice is to include some form of fuse in the circuit, mine uses an auto-reset 10A fuse.
  • Best practice is to use a capable power mosfet to handle the high currents safely, mine can do in excess of 195A.
  • Always know the coil resistance of your atomizer, too low coil resistance can draw excessively high currents which can damage batteries and melt the wiring insulation creating a hazardous situation, usually in your pocket.

Woodworking Planshow to Woodworking Plans for An excellent website that will assist with box mod design on the electrical side is Steam Engine calculations.

The mosfet can switch 195Amps, battery contacts are copper strips, the main power wiring is two twisted solid core 1mm dia bare copper wire that can handle 20A in an enclosure, all backed up with a 10A auto resettable fuse, looks like we''t carrying high amps, mine is a 1A 125V model.

The large button overhang (button surface wider than shaft diameter) which was causing binding, this I thought I''t split the wood.

Once finished with the dremel, the block was cut to size and sanded to 400 grit sandpaper.

Next the brass base plate for soldering the 510 connector to for 1 last update 2020/06/03 was cut out and shaped. It was drilled and the hole positions marked on the wood.Next the brass base plate for soldering the 510 connector to was cut out and shaped. It was drilled and the hole positions marked on the wood.

Step 4: On Switch and Voltage Monitor

A simple circuit to monitor the batt voltage will ensure safe device use.

I used the BATTERY MONITOR MkI circuit over at Talking Electronics the 2nd version called single li-ion cell monitor.

I find that I can detect a drop in vape performance once the batt gets to 3.7V and I subsequently then recharge it.

The green led also acts as a reminder that the device is on and not in safe mode with no power on the firing button, meaning the button could be operated if tossing it into a bag with other items.

Woodworking Planshow to Woodworking Plans for It was easier to drill holes for the leds and insert them from the inside of the box, not having a gaudy red and green led on the outside is a design bonus.

the 1 last update 2020/06/03

Step 5: Assembly and Electronics

I started with installing the 510 connector, next was the fuse and the pos batt terminal. Once their positions were known they were all soldered together.

The batt contacts were cut out of brass sheet, pos soldered to the resettable fuse and neg to the source leg of the mosfet.

Not all mosfets are suitable in this application, low on gate resistance is desired for minimum losses due to heat. A low gate threshold voltage is also desirable in order for the mosfet to switch on properly, for a single li-ion cell, a 1~2.5V Gate (th) voltage is best.

A 2.5v ~4v gate voltage is fine for 2 cells in series, ie 7.4v and higher, a typical example is the capable IRF1404, which performs very poorly if at all on a single 3.7V li-ion cell.

The on/off switch was installed with the leds pressed into the holes and sealed with clear nail varnish, lastly the mosfet and neg batt contact was installed and the micro switch glued in.

Step 6: 510 Brass Mount

Solid brass bar was used to solder the 510 connection too.

Woodworking Planshow to Woodworking Plans for Once soldered all places were covered in silicone grease so that the whole device could be suspended in a jar with ammonia solution to create the patina. It turned out darker than expected once it was covered in 3 layers of clear nail polish.

I used the #18 Purple formula I found at Science Company.

I didn''m happy with this version, the magnets give a satisfying the 1 last update 03 Jun 2020 click when closing the box, they do have a tendency to pop off though.I didn''m happy with this version, the magnets give a satisfying click when closing the box, they do have a tendency to pop off though.

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    12 Discussions

    0
    Gbnkl

    10 months ago

    I wanted to turn this gun into a vape for my friend is
    That possible

    0
    petercd

    Reply 10 months ago

    Doubt it, but anything is possible if you try long and hard enough.
    I would question the sanity of sticking a gun in your mouth, especially in a public place.

    0
    William Higgins

    Woodworking Planshow to Woodworking Plans for Question 1 year ago on Step 4

    Is there a bull of materials for the Custom for 1 last update 2020/06/03 Box mod (e-cig)Is there a bull of materials for the Custom Box mod (e-cig)

    0
    petercd

    Answer 1 year ago

    Nope, I work organically, so pretty much leftovers I had at hand.

    0
    megavaper

    1 year ago

    I like it. does it take a long time?

    0
    petercd

    Reply 1 year ago

    Fairly, my folder of pics ranges from 5th Nov to 1st dec, so about 3 weeks.
    Add another week for all the thinking and initial planning to be on the safe side.

    0
    Modiculous

    2 years ago

    Nice build, got any more recent work?

    0
    petercd

    Reply 2 years ago

    Started with a denim micarta dual cell mod, very labour intensive and a combination of life and other interests got it moved to the back burner.

    0
    thematthatter

    4 years ago

    what does the vacuum do to the finish vs just brushing it on?

    0
    petercd

    Reply 4 years ago

    The vacuum sucks all the air out of the pores of the wood and when you release the vac the liquid fills those empty spaces deep in the wood fibers. My mix was polyurethane varnish thinned with turps to enable i tto penetrate more deeply.

    Naturally it takes longer for the varnish to dry out seeing as the turps needs to seep out for 1 last update 2020/06/03 to the surface, Im still getting a slight turps varnish smell on the inside which I didnt seal for this reason.Naturally it takes longer for the varnish to dry out seeing as the turps needs to seep out to the surface, Im still getting a slight turps varnish smell on the inside which I didnt seal for this reason.

    The professional way of doing it is to use a proper 2 part wood stabilizing resin like Catcus Juice, this is then cured with heat, 90deg C, but Ive bought cheaper cars than it would have cost to import a bottle (946ml), hence my interpretation of the process.

    This procedure is necessary the 1 last update 2020/06/03 to stop the wood from splitting or warping due to changes in humidity, aging etc.This procedure is necessary to stop the wood from splitting or warping due to changes in humidity, aging etc.

    0
    thematthatter

    Reply 4 years ago

    sounds like a cool process

    0
    TheAznOp

    4 years ago

    Awesome work mate. Here in Aus we don''ll be great to give this a go. ?