Electronic cigarettes come in a staggering variety of shapes, sizes, and configurations. Joining the electronic cigarette market are devices that market themselves as e-cigars and e-pipes. Are these devices actually different than electronic cigarettes?
In attempting to answer that question, let’s examine a few commonalities between the three devices. All three feature a battery that powers a heating coil which vaporizes an e-liquid, producing vapor. If that’s the extent of your definition of an electronic cigarette, then e-cigars and e-pipes are no different from electronic cigarettes.
However, the real answer is a bit more nuanced. Any regular vaper knows that details like form factor, battery size, tank configuration, and e-liquid mixture can make all the difference when it comes to electronic cigarettes. It’s those details that separate the $5 disposable electronic cigarette that you can buy at a gas station from a $200 advanced electronic cigarette. In this respect, electronic cigars and electronic pipes can be quite different than electronic cigarettes.
A lot of what it comes down to is the intended market of the product. Any cigar smoker knows there is a massive difference between settling down with a nice Dominican Corona and taking a drag from a cigarette. In this same way, many electronic cigar makers have gone to great lengths to manufacture a product that replicates the look and feel of a tobacco cigar. Many of the vendors of disposable electronic cigars package them in boxes that look like traditional cigar boxes, complete with that wonderful cedar smell.
Cigar smoking has always had an inherent element of luxury to it, and the makers of electronic cigars want to preserve that. In this same way, the liquids used in e-cigars tend to have a more robust flavor than those used in pre-filled electronic cigarettes. While the technological “heart” of the product is the same, the experience will differ substantially.
This proves even truer when it comes to electronic pipes. Smoking a pipe has forever hearkened back to a bygone era. The style and sophistication of a pipe sets it apart from any other method of consuming tobacco. While they haven’t gained a major market foothold yet, e-pipes are gaining a following for the same reasons that smokers are drawn to tobacco-burning pipes.
Many e-pipes are handcrafted creations that draw in vapers looking to add some style and sophistication to their vaping experience. Many e-pipes tend to carry a premium price tag in the same way that handmade e-cigarettes do. In form-factor, e-pipes are the most different from the “tube” shape that most other vaping devices tend to gravitate towards. Styled like their analogue counterparts, the battery is housed in the bowl of the pipe and the tank is part of the pipe’s stem. Some e-pipe mods use standard 510 or ego threading and can accept cartomizers and tanks like electronic cigarettes. However, other e-pipe manufacturers use special proprietary tanks with their products. If you’re thinking about purchasing an electronic pipe, you may want to make sure to check and see if you can use it with your current products.
In the end, it all comes down to experience. The reason so many people have switched to vaping is its ability to replicate the sensation of smoking without the plethora of health risks associated with tobacco cigarettes. At the technical level, electronic cigarettes, electronic cigars, and electronic pipes are just three devices that perform the same function. However, at the experiential level, the three each have their market and their own unique appeal.