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Safety Info For Diy’ers, You Should Test Your Base Nic Juice.

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I saw a post on another forum about reports being made about nicotine sold by a US pharma vendor is many times stronger than the label states. A 100mg sample is said to have tested at 245mg strength. This means any resulting e-liquid made will be over double the expected strength. This may mean that 24mg liquid you make in good faith could actually be 60mg.

This doesn’t surprise me actually, because a few months ago, I bought 60mg NIC, and ended up being 100mg NIC. Not as big as difference, but still could be dangerous. Ever since then, I stress NIC testing because there are no true regulations that can prevent NIC juice being sold at too high, or too low of levels. Even a well trusted vendor can make a mistake, they are only human. (and the batch that was wrong for me was my regular well trusted vendor, which I ordered from before, and still order from. It was only a 1 time mistake in my case)

http://www.eliquidtest.com/Instructions.aspx is testing procedures with many tips, and recommendations. It’s better to be safe, and have piece of mind knowing exactly what you are vaping.

If you have any questions about the instructions, check out the FAQ page, or if your question isn’t listed there, post it here and I’ll help you out. I’ve been regularly testing all my DIY eliquid for several months now, and consider my self a pro, lol. Also, if you have you own personal story about bad eliquid or something, I’d like to hear about it.

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Yea you would think, but I heard many stories about NIC juice being stronger than ordered. ($$ out of thier pocket) I also ordered many stories about NIC juice being too weak. Yes, some vendors might do that on purpose to boost thier profits, but I think most of the time is a mistake too because thats just bad business. Of course, if your selling 50mg advertised, and only make it 42mg, nobody (unless its tested) would know the difference and the vendor is getting an extra 20% $$.

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  • 2 weeks later...


As a vaper, I have found that the market is very 'loose', with no kind of regulation at all, and I decided to start researching about what I vape.

First thing, of course, is the easy one: nicotine concentration tests on e-liquids.

I decided, though, to purchase the ingredients locally, for many reasons - paranoid customs officials in my area being not the least of them.

I have a few questions for you:

1. I found Bromothymol blue in the powder form. I was told that the solution should be made with 0.05% Bromothymol powder and the rest distilled water. Is this ok? If I make it much denser, will there be a problem? (I don't have equipment to accurately measure weight. I use a cheap digital scale with 0.1gr precision, but I know its readouts are not precise).

2. I think that using an even less denser sulphuric acid solution, like let's say 0.06%, can lead to even more accurate results, since the inaccuracy associated with the 0.1ml marking will be cut in half. Is there a reason for not using that much thinned solution?

3. I purchased Sulphuric Acid at 96% concentration (nothing less at the local market, sorry). I will make a much less dense solution for making the tests, about 1 gram in 830 gram of distilled water to be close to the 0.12% you are using.

The problem is, of course, derermining the actual concentration of the solution. If I know it, I'll be able to decide the number needed for multiplication , to determine the actual nicotine content.

Can you tell me a way to determine the concentration of that Sulphuric Acid solution? Is there an alkaloid product on the stores, with standarized pH, to make a test using the Bromothymol blue so as to find that concentration?


I'm thinking of thinning it in 3 steps, using e.g. 10 percent of the solution in each step with 90% distilled water.

So it should be:

Step 1: 90gr water, 10gr Sulphuric Acid 96% -> 9.6% solution

Step 2: 90gr water, 10gr Sulphuric Acid 9.6% -> 0.96% solution

Step 3: 90gr water, 10gr Sulphuric Acid 0.96% -> 0.096% solution (which is a number close to the 0.12% you are proposing, and so little changes have to be made to the calculations. If I use 10.76% and 98.24% I will end exactly at 0.12%).

I believe that using my cheap digital scale, I can achieve 0.2gr in 100gr precision. So, with 2% inaccuracy in each step, the total inaccuracy will be a bit less than 6% (and the final solution will be somewhere between 0.090% and 0.102%). In a 24mg liquid, the results should be between 22.59mg and 25.47mg - and on a 6mg one, between 5.65mg and 6.37mg. That's enough precision for me.

The question here, is: Is this correct? Did I forget something fundamental - or trivial - that I should take into account? Is there a practical consideration I don't know, or a mistake in my assumptions or calculations? Perhaps Sulphuric Acid's molar mass or density should be used somewhere?

And, finally: why not put the Bromothymol blue in the sulphuric acid solution, so that only one bottle will be needed for the test?

I hope that all these are clear and understandable, since english is not my native language and I'm not a chemist.

I also hope that you don't hold hard feelings for not purchasing the supplies from you :)

Finally, I hope that this post will be noticed and replied soon...

Best regards from (tottering at knife's edge) Greece!

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Welcome to vapor talk Liakoyras. You will enjoy it here. First I would like to say I’m not a chemist by profession, but I’ll give you my best answer.

1. I believe if you make it denser you results COULD be SLIGHTLY on the low end, because there is a little bit of acidity to blue. Adding more makes the solution more acidic. However, I have personally done the test with high levels of blue, and the result variations were minimal. Well below the +/- 10% margin of error the test it self has.

2. Using less dense acid can make the test more accurate, however, you can’t use the 19.47 multiplier. That’s specific to .12 acid. In the original procedure from 2 years ago, DVAP used .10 acid and the multiplier was around 16.25. There are specific mathematical equations to come up with the multiplier (which I don’t know) but I would suspect the multiplier for .06 acid would be 9.735 because that’s half of 19.47 and .06 is half of .12. If you look at my ‘Alternate Testing’ procedures, I basically do the same thing by doubling the nic solution, which cuts down the margin of error.

3. Dang, that’s some strong acid. Please be careful when working with it. That’s dangerous. To be more precise, you should cut down the acid (and the blue powder) with deionized water, not distilled, but if distilled is all you got, then it should be ok. (If a true chemist reads this, please correct me if I’m wrong) You math seems correct, however, I’m not sure what the density of acid is compared to water, weight wise that is. You prolly better off doing the calculations by volume, not weight. i.e. add 9ml water to 1 ml acid. If you look at the ‘credits page’ of the website, and goto DVAP’s original method, he goes in to all the details and math.

4. You can’t add the blue to the acid bottle because the blue amount used remains a constant, where the acid is the variable.

I absolutely do no hold hard feelings that you did not get the supplies from me. My goal is to help out the vaping community the best I can. I just hope I don’t give out any wrong information, and have DVAP and Kurt from ECF nagging on me because I’m giving false information. (They are the true chemists)

All I can say is, trial and error. Try your test on different base nics if you got them, and first make sure its consistent, and compare the results to what it ‘should be’ see how accurate you are. I did ship a test kit to a guy in Greece (Athens, Mandra) about 3 days ago. He might have it in a week if there are no issues with customs. I also shipped one to Greece on October 5th (Petroupoli). I can prolly hook you up with one of them, can you can send a nic sample to them, and have them test with the kit, and see how the results compare to yours. Send me a PM if you are interested, and I'll ask them if its ok for you to contact them,

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  • 1 year later...
  • 4 months later...

I paid for the kit on Dec 1 and haven't seen any notification from seller… and he hasn't been active in a year here or ECF. Should I file a dispute or wait?

Oop! Spoke too soon - just shipped. All is well

Edited by highpass
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