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Using Water and Vodka as a base (Instead of PG)


Cool, let me know if you like it. The big difference is you just need a a couple days longer steep.


Crock pots on “low” generally range in the 170-210°F region.
I have a collection of 4oz mason jars that I use for mixing/heating/steeping (with lids off). I have used Maureenie’s methods (slightly varied) with great success so far.

The Vodka/Water/VG base (mine is a bit thicker than Maureeenie’s) I let sit in a tightly SEALED Mason jar for at least 2 or 3 days after an initial decent stirring/mixing.

My take on her method involves putting all ingredients into the mason jar along with the VG Base marked on the claculator as simply “max vg” with “0” marked in for water/pg/pga. Add your nic in as per usual.

I mix the chemicals together with a little milk frother gizmo ($5.95 from Liquid Barn) that makes short order out of the more cumbersome “shaking your mix until bubbly” (because I’m a lazy ass). Once I have the mix looking like a nice cappuccino frappé (bubbly white) I take the ring portion of the mason jar lid, stretch a lint-less tissue over the top of the jar and screw that ring down onto the jar lightly so that there is now a porous cover on the jar that BREATHES and will allow the gassing off process to occur while keeping your juice (pure) and free of junk falling into it while heating/steeping etc… Fire up the oven at a nice even 185°F and set the jar in there for about an hour on a baking stone. Pull the jar out after the time is up and hit it hard with the frother thingy until a nice cappuccino frappé is once again achieved. Set the jar with the porous cover on it aside overnight. Open again the next day and Frappé the crap out of it. Let it sit for the rest of that day and overnight (were now 2 days in). Third day, remove from the mason jar into squeezy bottles (unicorns, droppers, regular glass, whatever you like), cover, and “throw in a drawer for a week”.


You obviously took a great deal of time, thought, and effort to share your personal methodology, and I think it’s wonderfully kind of you to share your perspective!

I did want to call your attention to something you may not be aware of however in the following aspect of your shared suggestions/method.

In another forum (rather well known) there was a monster thread about steeping, and whether or not to heat, etc (a couple thousand posts) where some individuals did some empirical style testing, and were able to verify (through titration testing) that there is a measurable loss of nicotine potency above a certain point (temperature wise).

IIRC the number was 150°F.
Now I forget what the ratio was (decrease in efficacy of nicotine vs increase in temperature), but I read through the entirety of those 2000+ posts (which is where it left off when I last saw it almost two years ago). The main thing I took from it (for my point of view) was that I didn’t want to exceed 125-135°F which, again IIRC, equated to a 1mg loss of nicotine (important if you’re only mixing 3mg to start with, but barely important at all if you’re mixing 12-18mg or more). In practice, I don’t ever exceed 115°F anymore in my ultrasonic cleaner. But that’s where mine maxes out fortunately.

I remember the loss was noticeably greater at 150°F, and fairly sure that Temps above that was not recommended.

Anyways, given you’re using (and recommending) 185°F, I would definitely recommend looking further into the correlation between nicotine efficacy and temperature. Especially if you’re mixing 3mg or less. :wink:

Hope you don’t take offense, as I only want to see you (and others) have the best possible experience (and results)!

Hot/warm bath or not?
Hot/warm bath or not?

Hey no offense at all! That temperature number is critical! Thank you thank you! 115 is the magic number!


Hmm - Interesting.
Personally I haven’t noticed much of a difference > physically < when vaping 3mg juice made this way. I.E. I’m not having nic fits due to lack of nic getting to the bloodstream. Not sure about Maureeenie, since she heats hers twice as long as I do… Maybe she can attest to physically noticing losses in nic potency with her juices??

However, I have a fluke infra red thermo handy, and will certainly monitor the liquid temp when heating the stuff up. My oven only goes down to 170°F but the actual liquid temp can be monitored so as to not exceed the 115°F threshold. It basically amounts to how long one exposes the liquid to the heat. Pretty easy to control.

Thanks for the heads up on that!


I vape heavy and I need it very low. If I go above 1.5MG I get the head zoomies.


Just mixed a Vanilla Pineapple Creame and monitored the liquid temperature closely with the IR thermo. At 170°F (the lowest settable temp my oven can go) ~9 minutes in the oven raised the temp of the liquid to right around 115-116°F.


Thanks a lot for all this information… I started vaping no so long ago, 15days to be exactly and quite happy with the decision since it is the very first time in 30years I have manage to really stop smoking but, I have started noticing a discomfort and after trying different ejuices I found that 20PG is the top before I start to feel bad. I have made my very first 60ml of DiY ejuice at 20/80 but, the next will be without PG except for the one on the nicotine (I already bought it so, nothing to do about until is empty) and the flavors.


My Liter of PDO is getting low and I don’t plan to replace. I have no problems with PG lung-wise, and as I have stated before it’s basically a way to cut the clouds as my wife doesn’t vape… makes watching TV together much more sociable :wink:

When I started DIY the Marketing term “Max VG” was big so I thought I would adopt the Max VG strategy …didn’t work out for me as I was using Kanger subohm tanks. This topic has some hidden details I think shouldn’t be missed, and have been within other fractured topics.

First @Maureeenie’s process looks like it’s already been part of a Commercially adopted strategy at Open Vapor minus the alcohol part. IIRC Penta Water was previously discussed and one of he factors was it’s pH which was slightly alkaline (pH8?) There have been discussion on how alkalinity speeds the Maillard Reaction (steeping’s scientific term) .

The alcohol part is interesting. Now we all buy flavoring from ReallFlavors that are alcohol-based, so again some Commercial adoption of the concept of using alcohol as a flavor carrier. These two commercial applications are proof enough for me to consider personal adoption/tests.

IIRC @Maureeenie’s previous advice was using 100 proof vodka 50% alcohol. That would mean 2ml of 100 proof vodka was 1 ml of water and 1 ml alcohol in a recipe …obvious but might factor in recipe calcs. I mean if I think adding 5% water is smart and adding 1% alcohol is smart should I then choose 4% water and 1-2% Vodka [rhetorical question]…don’t answer]?

Buying Pena water? Also a previous topic searchable on ELR Forum. That topic being whether just adding distilled water (pH 7?) @ 5% per the OpenSource recipes mentioned above is as successful as adding the more alkaline Penta Water? …this having zero to do with Maurene’s claims or process, just considering the process analysis overall.

I don’t want to get hung up on Penta water, but I am stuck on using some kind of slightly alkaline water because I think it might be important as a steeping performance boost. I think we saw some video that also said Fiji brand drinking water was also close to 8 pH …but I would definitely be boiling that …hmmm maybe even distilling it and pH testing. Remembering a 1L bottle of water for e-juice DIY would last 1+ years.

On PDO. I’m discontinuing because it affects my recipe sharing and flavor analysis (oh yeah and I’m running out). If I am experiencing muting with RealFlavors past the two week mark I cannot make any claims or personal evaluations as I have two wild cards in the mix. I might go back to VG/PG temporarily just to get grounded in that regard.

So… I like this idea for a couple reasons. It makes some Chemistry sense in my opinion and shows some professional validation as being done commercially. We’re DIYing it here folks and we have come up with some weird tricks in the past. We’re on our own, and lucky to get internal commercial peeks into Juice-making such as OpenVapor’s recipes.

I think this idea has some traction and it’s top of my list to test. I currently add 1% DW to all my recipes along with about 20% PDO. I just have a hard time going to the Liquor Store and leaving with 1 airline mini of Vodka :wink:


I will try the Penta water for sure! I can also try the 2% Vodka and 4% Distilled Water…but the PH factor is always altered by the addition of the flavors. I know when the PH is off by how it feels when I vape it. If the PH is off by too much, it’s quite unpleasant. I get zero irritation in my mixes and my kids vape it like koolaid.

I guess the thing I think is the most important is the fact people “try” these things. They shouldn’t be afraid to add or change percentages of things that work for other people.


The thing is with making the base with the solvent pre-installed, it still takes a bit of time for that mix to coalesce. The water I use is deep (500+ feet) well water filtered twice at the pump and triple osmosis filtered in the house. Raw ground water lab tests done at the time of well drilling finds that there are no outside “man made” contaminants other than natural earthen minerals and salts. So after strict filtration it’s extremely pure. More so than distilled water from a bottle. This makes for very stable mixing, but it still takes what time it takes for mixes to “come into their own” so to speak. I have read most “distilled” waters you get from a bottle are simply local city water from where the plant is located that’s filtered, distilled and put in a bottle. Sort of a dicey affair as the suppliers of this water aren’t really required to list analytical spec’s about the chemical breakdown of what they are putting into the bottle. Distillation is a pretty decent way of removing contaminants but it solely depends on the distillation process that the suppliers are using with regard to getting out the contaminants that have boiling points under that of the water itself. Most city water these days are chock full of “man made” contaminants that never really belonged in water in the first place. Distilled water, if the process used has indeed rendered it totally pure, when exposed to air will naturally absorb CO² making the ideal pH of 7 slightly lower or more acidic. As far as PH figures being “off” if the water is truly pure you can raise the pH slightly by adding baking soda to it.


CONGRATS on quitting!! Your story is what this is all about at the end of the day.

As far as the PG allergy goes… You’ll probably grow less tolerant to PG the longer you’re vaping it. If you’re anything like me when I started vaping, commercial juices that were readily available at most shops ALL contained PG (to one degree or another) as a solvent. I kept noticing that the effects - stomach pain, sore/lumpy throat, headache, nausea, would get worse each time I would vape juice with PG in it. Now it’s to the point that if there is even 1-2% of PG in a mix I will have symptoms.

At the time I started vaping, there weren’t that many juiceer’s making PG free juices. Also the cost of commercially made juice was prohibitive to the point of ridiculous (it’s even worse now)… So with DIY you have complete control over what you’re pouring into your atomizer and the cost is a fraction of what you pay for commercial juice unless you count your time that you spend making it. And yes, the supplies you need to make juice do cost money as well but if you roll the numbers you’ll find you cut your costs by more than half with DIY.


Hi Maureenie,

A VERY interesting topic you have going here! :slight_smile:

Your final comment re your lungs burning with PG got me thinking…
I have Emphysema and have been going really well since taking up Vaping a few years ago, however I have noticed lately that I have been getting a cough and just couldn’t work out what was causing it all of a sudden.

Even with the Emphysema I’ve never been much of a ‘cougher’ at all symptom wise.
In light of this fact and how my ‘symptoms’ have changed recently and what you have shared on here I’m going to stop using PG to see if it stops this new coughing business since it only occurs when I’m Vaping!
Previously Vaping produced absolutely zero measurable (test wise), or general noticeable symptomatic impact as a result of the disease apart from the usual shortness of breath and weakness etc.
You may be onto more than you realise here;) I really do hope so!:slight_smile:
Thank you so very very much for posting!!:slight_smile:
(Thinking positively in advance😜).
Miranda x



Did you try it yet? I’ve been away from the computer…got a lot going on here.


Hi Maureen,
I’m a brand new noobie to vaping and diy and I realized the reason I’ve had so many problems sticking with and being able to vape and it’s the PG. I apparently don’t get along with it at all so I have been searching for forever on how to go about or if I could even take it out and use VG and I was so thankful to have found your wonderful post. I’d like to thank you so much for sharing this and for all your time and hard work that you put into posting this. I’m truly hoping I don’t screw this up…lol I’ve not mixed at all yet so I’m waiting on the rest of my stuff to get here so I should be ready by this weekend or beginning of next week so again ty very much. I do have a question it’s probably simple answer which I’ve overlooked so sorry in advance for a silly question. I ordered 100 mg of VG nicotine that’s what I was told to get which I wish I had found this site first before ordering anything. But the question is do I just simply put that in the calculator as I would before using this base here? Ok again ty for taking the time to read and respond I know my question is probably silly and my answer is yes I just wanted to make sure. Hope you have a great weekend :blush:


Hi, just wanted to chime in on that real quick. I believe what you have is your nicotine base, at 100mg strength, based in 100% VG. That needs to be treated as your nicotine in the calculator. Not your VG base. Here is a picture of my calculator settings for example. Where mine says nicotine strength 48, you would put in 100. The VG content of nicotine would also be 100. At the top, you put in the amount you want to make, then the desired strength of nicotine in the finished product, then you would hit the Max VG button. When it comes time to add the VG in your mix, you would simply add the vodka and water infused plain VG, and act like it is regular plain VG in the calculator.

Hope this makes sense! Someone will make a correction if I missed something, I’m sure :slight_smile: Happy mixing, glad to have you here!

Apologies if I misunderstood what you are talking about, Btw!


Hi Plunderdrum,
Thank you for the example I appreciate it. I think I didn’t explain myself right lol I was asking about the nicotine as you’re referring to so yes this helped alot thank you again for taking time to help me with my question. I think I’ve got it now😁 I hope you have a great weekend again thank you very much.


Oh! On rereading your post, I think I did misunderstand a bit, but I’m glad my response was still helpful! You have a good weekend too :slight_smile:



Thank you very much. I just told my story and it works for some people. A wise one on this site once told me… just vape the VG base you make without flavoring first and see how your lungs like it.

So I did :slight_smile:

Way back up in this thread is Maureenie’s Nic mixing for dummies post (I think)… I do use the calculator but all it takes is using some basic math and a large BPA free shaking container (about 1000 ML) …and a few different sizes of graduated cylinders to measure small amounts. I use 10, 50 and 100 sizes.

You will get the hang quickly.


I’m mixing Max VG with DW and 100 Proof Vodka. In the Calculator you can use the “Water/Vodka/PGA” check box just for the Distilled Water and add “Vodka” as a flavor to your Stash. Once added to your stash you can edit the characteristics of Vodka. Change “Flavor Carrier” to “other” and set the Specific Gravity to

Here is the source for that figure

This should make the calculations more exact. I don’t prefer to premix bases, but I can see how it might be easier, and understand OP might intend premixing as part of the effective chemistry of mixing/vaping a VG/DW/Vodka based e-juice.

@Maureeenie hope all is well…