Ceramic coils, danger and options


In this article, we will present three ceramic coils from different brands. We will objectively investigate them through the use of a microscope. After comparing their microstructure and powder size, we can see it is harmful to health. Using a ceramic coil can cause trachea and lung damage. Ceramic powder can cause cancer if not removed from the lung.

Figure 1 shows three kinds of ceramic coils on the market (#1, #2, and #3 stands for three different brands, respectively).
For #1, there is a layer of cotton between the ceramic and the coil. This design is lower in strength and makes the ceramic fragile. For example, the ceramic coil breaks apart when pinched and tiny powders fall off and stick onto the cotton. It is also hard to distinguish the cotton and the ceramic material since they are both white. In the case of #2 and #3, the ceramic material and the coil are heated up together to be made into one piece. However, the melting point of the coil is lower than the ceramic material so this causes the surface of the coil to be loose and porous. This makes the coil have low durability, is fragile, and has powders falling off.

Figure 2 shows partial end surface microstructure of #1, #2, and #3.
All three ceramic coils appear translucent with a glasslike exterior. Visible light can be reflected and scattered by pores inside the ceramic material. This is what makes it a translucent surface. The ceramic coil is made from silica similar to glass. Therefore, the ceramic coil appears as a glasslike surface. Many impurities can be seen at a magnification of 100X from a microscope and they appear as black spots. The glasslike particles are not uniform and appear to be uneven and chaotic. The tiny glass pieces have sharp surfaces that can scratch the trachea and alveoli when used. The black spots could also be unrefined toxic material that could have impurities.

Figure 2 Partial End Surface Microstructure of #1, #2 and #3 in Optical Microscope

Figure 3 shows partial cross section surface microstructure of #1, #2 and #3.
After breaking the material for the cross section, we can see glasslike particles with sharp surfaces. The glasslike particles are clearly visible at the magnification of 100X.

Figure 3 Partial Cross Section Surface Microstructure of 1#, 2# and 3# in Optical Microscope

Figure 4 shows partial edge surface microstructure of #1, #2, and #3.
Some parts have defects and some parts have sharp edges. This comes from two steps in making the ceramic coil. In the first step, the friction causes defects and coarse edges when samples are removed from the mold. In the second step, the surface of the ceramic coil is loose from the friction between the ceramic powders and the mold. The loose powders cannot be heated up and molded onto a dense body. The ceramic powders also stick to the surface of the ceramic coil. This process also makes the ceramic powders fall off easily.

Figure 4 Partial Edge Surface Microstructure of #1, #2 and #3 in Optical Microscope

Figure 5 shows ceramic powders falling off microstructure #1, #2, and #3.
When the ceramic powder is touched, the powder sticks onto that surface. All these powders are glasslike pieces with sharp edges mentioned above in the optical microscope. The size of the ceramic powder is distributed between 30-120 micrometers which is too tiny to be seen by the human eye.

Figure 5 Ceramic Powders Falling Off Microstructure of 1#, 2# and 3# in Optical Microscope

Figure 6 shows the microscope image on the contact segment between ceramic and coil.
Number #1 does not compare with others since its coil does not come in contact with the ceramic material. Many ceramic powders gather at the position near coil. The first reason is that the coil cannot be easily compressed into a ceramic material when the ceramic material is molded. This is because the cross section of the coil is circular. The second reason is that powders are produced after taking the coil off of the mold. It is impossible to clean the powders stuck to the inner surface of the ceramic coil. There are ceramic powders on the inside of all ceramic coils on the market.

Figure 6 Optical Microscope Image on Contact Segment between the Ceramic and the Coil
Finally, ceramic coils may cause death.Making the ceramic material

The ceramic coil is made from inorganic porous ceramic material. There are tiny pores inside the ceramic material that cannot be seen. Pores play an important role in wicking. In order to produce a porous ceramic material, raw materials such as silica powders and pore-forming materials like starch or other organic polymers are needed. Then they are mixed and put into a mold with high pressure. Samples are obtained with a fixed shape. The samples are put into a furnace and set to a high temperature. Pores are formed while the pore-forming agent combusts and escapes. This kind of pore plays an important role by introducing e-liquid into your vape. However, to make enough pores, the temperature to stick the materials together is lower which causes low tensile and compressive strength. The powders fall off or crack when the ceramic coil is touched or shaken. All the powders can be introduced into the lung by air which is dangerous (the speed of air can reach 223mph when we are vaping).


Ceramic coils will absorb more e-liquid. E-liquid is vaporized and evaporated when the coil is working.

High pressure from the vapor will expand and damage the structure of the porous ceramic material. Loose powders will fall off and go into the lung. Causing death

Silicosis is a form of occupational lung disease caused by inhalation of crystalline silica dust. Symptoms are inflammation and scarring in the form of nodular lesions in the upper lobes of the lungs. This is a type of pneumoconiosis. Silicosis can be complicated by the development of severe scarring, where small nodules gradually merge together, reaching a size of 1cm or greater. Progressive massive fibrosis is associated with more severe symptoms and respiratory impairment. Silicosis can also be complicated by other lung diseases such tuberculosis, non-tuberculous mycobacterial infection, and fungal infection, certain autoimmune diseases, and lung cancer (“Silicosis.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 29 Sept. 2016.)(Silicosis - Wikipedia).

In conclusion, ceramic coils are not healthy. First, a ceramic coil is made from silica similar to glass. Second, ceramic powders or glasslike pieces easily fall off. Finally, silica powders may cause death.

Uwell is working hard to develop a better ceramic coil. However, it is impossible to continue with current technology. Therefore, Uwell will put making a ceramic coil on hold.In this article, we will present three ceramic coils from different brands. We will objectively investigate them through the use of a microscope. After comparing their microstructure and powder size, we can see it is harmful to health. Using a ceramic coil can cause trachea and lung damage. Ceramic powder can cause cancer if not removed from the lung.


What is a recommended option for a “coil pen” in regards to the end-user self loading of oils? I am interested to see what you recommend for a healthier / safer alternative. A lot of people I know use something like this which I understand if far from superior. In short - Best option for a portable dab rig?

Ive probably tried every portable device out there as my brother owns a vape store. I always go back to the same combo time after time and its cheap.

I use the Kandypens Galaxy top. The Quartz Dual Coil ones with the full quartz chamber. I use that top with a cheap Eleaf 10w battery. It last for a day of straight toking. More than 200 hits. Lately, ive been buying the knockoff coils for a 1/4 of the price and dont see one difference. Literally my pen cost like $13. If i lose it or it breaks…Im not all pissed off! Thats my recommendation


Even at $70 shipped, the whole kit looks reasonable + lifetime warranty on the battery. I’m gonna have to visit a few smoke shops for the better deals. Thanks for the rec.

Im not a huge fan of their batteries. The oil can leak onto the battery terminal if heated to hot. With the eleaf battery there is a 510 to Ego piece that prevents acts as a buffer. Its by no mean a perfect device. But its cheap. I can lose it or break it like we are all prone to do.

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Looked at a couple different stores for a Kandypen Galaxy with no luck - still gonna grab one if I see it. Maybe you know a better place to get it online?
One item I saw in 3/4 stores and ended up with is the Yocan Evolve Plus for $30. Surprisingly the only unit I saw with comparable specs, almost the same (quartz dual coil) except the ceramic bucket vs full quartz. It has a fancy holder in the bottom of the battery :tada: She hits nice and has plenty of airflow.

Something that alluded me and my only complaint (after 5 days), not only are you not suppose to put too much oil in, but you gotta unscrew the mouthpiece, then the coil cap to get to the coils, making refilling her a PITA. I find myself with the mouthpiece, coil cap, built in jar and battery in one hand, dab tool in the other and I just don’t have much patience for that. I think it’s on par with other same-style vapes where ~10 hits in one load is being generous. I am going to try and run it without the coil cap and see how big of a mess I make.


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Sorry i dont know where to buy them. I use to buy them off of ebay, but there doesnt seem to be people selling just the mouthpieces anymore.

These days i just buy the bootleg ones anyways cause they are literally the same. I got a ton of authentic ones ive bought from Kandypens and i find the bootleg ones last longer…matter of fact the bootleg ones i usually throw away before they burn out.

I have an evolve and evolve plus here. Both i think are pretty good. They are all a PITA to use and pack. None last really more than 10-15 at a packing if you want the coils to last. The yocan chamber is smaller than the kandypens chamber but not much. The little metal piece on the bottom of the coil can come apart leaving a oily mess on the battery. Yocan makes pretty good products though. I like there NYX top with the Eleaf 40W battery.

If you need extra coils for your yocan pens. My little brother is a rep for their products in his store. I certainly can give them to you at cost or direct you to his ebay store. If you wanna try the bootleg Kandypens top. I dont know if you can DM me. But id be happy to send you one for free to try out. I have a few extra here…Its the least i can do for your contribution for helping set this place up. Let me know. Have a good week!


Cancer from inhaling ceramic dust?! Wtf?! Someone must invent a better way – “After comparing their microstructure and powder size, we can see it is harmful to health. Using a ceramic coil can cause trachea and lung damage. Ceramic powder can cause cancer if not removed from the lung.”