Okay so I’m fairly new to DIY flavoring. I started with a Liquid barn “DIY Kit” and have slowly built up some other flavors to work with as I wasn’t thrilled with liquid barn’s nicotine or flavors (a few were alright). Pretty much every flavor I’ve made so far has sucked and wouldn’t be something I’d vape on the reg. My general strategy has been to mix a couple flavors that I think will work well together up to a flavor percentage of 10 to 15% in a batch and then let it steep in my closet for a week to two weeks and then try the flavor. Most of my mixes have been attempts at a “pink starburst” (my favorite flavor from my local vape shop) and my last batch was about 7% TFA ripe strawberry, 3% TFA watermelon, and 3% TFA Vanilla Custard. I made a 15 ML batch.
In my imagination, these 3 flavors sound amazing in roughly these ratios. In practice, it tastes like crap and so has every other flavor I’ve mixed. I’ve gotten some TFA vanilla swirl on the way and am hoping this improves my result but I am starting to feel a little defeated. Is there some failure in the logic behind how I’m creating flavors? Has anyone else gone through this and have some tips on how to make actual good “professional quality” flavors?
Basically, any tips would be greatly appreciated. I am far from throwing in the towel but any guidance to help me make a usable juice that doesn’t go down the drain would be much appreciated.
It’s not a curse, most of us have been there. I remember about a month into mixing, sitting and staring at my mixing station and looking at the flavors I had amassed. Thinking to myself " Ok, I have only made marginally good juice that I can only vape once in awhile… who can I give all this stuff to?" Luckily I stuck with it and kept reading and researching here and I make some pretty decent juice I can vape all the time.
First, almost everything I got in my DIY starter kit was crap. It was from another retailer. The PG and VG was just ok, but the nicotine was horrible, and at first I didn’t realize it was that making everything harsh.
What about your juices is bad? Harshness? Too much chemical taste? Too floral? What ratio VG/PG? What brand of nic and what strength?
I haven’t used the TFA Custard, but I know with the CAP Vanilla Custard, I can’t go above 1% or its too overpowering.
KEEP MIXING! I say this at the end all my videos because it’s the only thing you need to do to get better. As long as you continue mixing, you’ll be able to whip up anything, any place, any time. Every “advanced” or “experienced” mixer got there because they understand their ingredients. And the only way to understand your flavorings is to use them. And not just use them, by themselves, in a solo mix. Use them in every situation, every percentage, and every ratio. The more you know a flavoring, the more that tool becomes useful. You’ll get there, just keep fiddling and messing around with other recipes.
Yeah theres usually some overly floral / chemical or otherwise “bad” taste lingering in everything I’ve made. The best way I can think to describe it is that I can’t get that pure clean flavor I get from my favorite retail juices I’ve bought. I didnt consider checking my vg and pg i got in the diy kit. The nic was garbage so i’ll check that out make sure theres no smell. I may very well be exceeding the “decent flavor threshold” on certain flavors too. I see notes like “this tastes like this above 5%” so maybe thats a part of my issue. I guess I just have to keep grinding and taking notes.
I have one huge suggestion. Get away from trying to clone other flavors (Starburst Pink). Even the best blenders can take weeks, even months trying to clone a flavor, and quite often still not get it right. If creating flavors is more your bag rather than following recipes then check this thread on flavor pairing.
This thread will help you to know flavors that will work well together. If you take the time to learn your flavor concentrates, flavor pairing, and be patient and experiment, in no time you’ll be mixing exceptional juices. Just don’t allow yourself to get discouraged. Good luck…
You’ll be just fine. When I first started I remember adding extra berry to a recipe I saw on here because hey… I really like berry. I thought it would just have extra berry flavor. It was so flowery and had a bad chemical taste to it, it was awful. Sometimes less is more, and subtle can be perfect, or subtle can be coaxed to be not so subtle and even better. I still use that berry flavor and its delicious, just much smaller amounts
i also started with the LB kit , their VG PG and nicselect are great and as far as their flaves only the creans for me however i do use their strw cheesecake , how long didyou steep your straw ripe melon custard 3pct custardneeds some time get some marshmallow to sweeten things , also if your use to commercial juices than your probably use to lots of sucralose so it may take time to adapt to not using lots of sweetner
Yep, I’ve totally been there… in fact I was there only a couple of weeks ago lol.
A couple of things to consider…
-You might have to use a couple of different types or brands of strawberries (for example) to get the strawberry you’re looking for.
-At the top of the description page for each flavor (click on a flavor in a recipe or enter a search of the flavor & you’ll get there), you’ll see the average mixing quantity, & the average quantity when used as a standalone. A guide only, but it might help you. Further down the page in notes, you’ll see how others have used it, their thoughts & maybe a description.
-But above all, as others have said, experience is your greatest ally. I generally get to know my flavors by doing a number of 5ml tests on each - TPA flavors are generally middle-of-the-road strength wise, so I’ll do 2% 4.5% & 8% on them. INW on the other hand has the reputation of being much stronger so I’ll do a .5% 2% & 5% on them. The ‘average mixing quantities’ is my guide here.
Good luck & happy mixing to you. Hope this helps. Vape on!
No truer words has ever been spoken. Research, Testing and Mixing is the best way to understanding what’s in the bottle. Just because it states a certain flavor on the bottle doesn’t mean that’s the taste you get when you mix and vape.
Those 3 flavors does look good, especially if those flavors were spot on… it would make mixing so simple. That’s where research could help you find flavors that’s true to the name on the bottle. You should branch out find better flavors for your stash. There is no vendor that carry all spot on flavors. But some vendors do carry a lot more than others.
This sounds like a pretty good way to get to know my flavors but I have one question – how do you taste them? Are you re-wicking in between every sample? Say with 3 formulations of one flavor you’re looking at quite a lot of wicking to taste all 3 in their purest form.
Hey your videos are actually pretty helpful, thanks for that. I have a lot to learn so I appreciate getting straightforward information like that instead of parsing through reddits and forum posts that only half-answer some of my questions.
@Nightmare_mode THIS is your biggest clue to success. Think about your fav ADV …you take a couple tugs, you like and you want to do some more …it was good but not quite enough …you want to taste that again. Going lower on flavor% is key to generating that “not quite enough, I want more!” perception. The flavor needs to just say "hey I taste like strawberry " so your palate sends that message to your Happy Place (an actual part of your brain).
If your ingredients are cr@p you are screwed. SO let’s do a quick test. clean up your RDA and vape 12 drops of your VG …it should be pretty tasteless, maybe a little sweet. Go ahead and add a few drops of your PG right in there, again it may be a little more throat hit but have little taste. So mix up a 10ml of that tested PG/VG to your default % (70/30?) and test a couple drops for reference (Same ol dirty RDA), now and add enough of your nic into that 10ml test to make it 3% …again test.
If it’s peppery you have oxidized nic. If you vape higher nic% feel free to go to that% …3% is low. I would not recommend going over 6% nic with an RDA (but other people do). Easiest solution would be just buy some more nic from another vendor. I also recommend having it shipped USPS Priority as it spends a day on a plane (a cold plane!) instead of a week on a truck (a HoT truck!) Temperature kills nicotine.
Flavors? Well, welcome to ELR! You know you can’t quit. Wayne Fucking Walker just told you to “Keep Mixing” Take some time to read the info here and don’t forget that every penny you save not smoking is money you can spend on DIY! Strawberry flavors are a great start as SB is probably the most forgiving extract.
Start taking notes in your Word software because you are going to discover more and more recipes here, and find yourself saying, "I WANT TO MAKE THAT! plus you’re gonna want Internet links to other vital info you trip over on your journey …capture it ALL. Never forget we were all once, YOU …welcome to the Fire. Oh here’s an easy one!
That is particularly sound advise from @BoDarc & will insure a solid foundation for all your mixes - obviously, if you’re working with dodgy pg vg or nic, anything you mix will taste bad.[quote=“Nightmare_mode, post:12, topic:84002”]
Are you re-wicking in between every sample?
No. Well, I dont. I start at the lightest %age & work up, then remove that wick, dry burn (not Ti - NEVER dry burn Ti! I use SS but many use kanthal), then re wick for the next flavor. I use the ‘average mixing quantity’ from the flavor description page as my second or middle test. I figure that way i’m covering all or at least most of the bases. The only prob is when you want to re-try the lightest when you’ve just done the heaviest. In this case, its a re wick, but if I’m feeling lazy (which is most of the time lol) & I’m using TC, I vape the wick as dry as possible & start again & prob do the lightest 2 or 3 times to clear the wick. Obviously, all accuracy has just been thrown out the window, but…
Also, I suggested 5ml tests. I think I need to elaborate on this a bit… If you’re using quality scales, a 5ml test will not be a prob, but trying to measure .5% (0.03grams) into 5ml might be tricky if your scales aint up to it. If this is the case, do 10ml tests instead.
It’s not perfect - probably a little weak but I only let it steep 3 weeks. Anyway, I’ve been mixing LB Vanilla Ice Cream with random fruits that I like, and I haven’t had one yet where I felt even the slightest desire to throw it down the drain.