Wotofo is a Chinese designer/manufacturer of rebuildable atomizers, both RDAs and RTAs. Their most well-known product is the Serpent RTA, and the Serpent Mini is its smaller size little brother.
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Prices for the Serpent Mini RTA vary among online vendors from $17–35. Why the wide range, with the highest price more than double the lowest? I don’t know, but there it is. If price matters to you, do some searching online and save yourself some bucks.
The Wotofo Mini is one of many smaller RTAs on the market. It has a single-coil deck with an unusual, vice-like post setup for securing the coil wires. Building on the deck is easy, although I wouldn’t use any wire smaller than about 28 AWG (.35mm diameter).
The package contains three pre-wound “competition” coils made of twisted wire. I used one. Building on the deck was easy and straightforward. The only critical feature was that the coils fit into slots in the posts rather than holes, so care needs to be taken when tightening the hex screws to pin them that they are centered against the screw, not trapped under it. My build came in at 0.48Ω.
I had no trouble wicking the coil. The two half-cylindrical wick channels are large and require only half the wick end to be placed about halfway down into the eliquid channel. Don’t cram the cotton into the channels, and definitely don’t extend them to the bottom. Where wicking is concerned, the Serpent Mini is definitely a “less is better” tank.
Top filling the tank was a snap. Screw off the tap cap, close the air intake, add eliquid through the wide slots, screw on the top cap about halfway, turn the tank over and open the air intakes, then screw on the top cap until it’s finger tight. a good rule of thumb with this or any other tank is to stop short of completely filling the tank with eliquid. Leave a small air space at the top of the tank. This helps to stabilize the internal pressure and minimize leaking. I got no leaking at all after filling or later.
The aesthetics of the black unit I was sent for review were clean and uncluttered, which is my preference. Some versions I saw online had a metal drip tip. Mine was delrin, which I like, but it didn’t seat quite flush into the top cap.
In that vein, general build quality was acceptable if not stellar. Besides the drip tip not seating flush, the metal of the top cap felt slightly thin, and its threads didn’t catch easily with the body on a couple of occasions after refilling. Other times, however, the top cap went back on smoothly. The threads weren’t crunchy, and the machining was competent — I found no burrs or machine oil. I’d rate the quality of parts and manufacturing as mid-range. I’ve seen better, but I’ve also seen far worse.
The Serpent Mini is a tank designed for moderate power. Since the tank is small and single coil, with a very large air hole under the tank and wide air intake slots on the base, less power is required to produce vapor. I started out at 28 watts, which provided decent flavor and a nice amount of vapor, then upped the wattage to 35. Both vapor and flavor increased, and the vape got somewhat warmer. I can imagine that the vapor might get quite warm at 50 or 60 watts. I felt no need to even try more than 40 watts, however, since that modest level of power produced an entirely satisfactory vaping experience.
The draw is slightly restrained — even with the air intake slots fully open, the Serpent Mini doesn’t have the non-resistant airiness of an RDA. Still, this is clearly a direct-lung tank. Mouth-to-lung vapers need not consider the Serpent Mini. It’s not designed for them.
Wotofo designed the Serpent Mini without eliquid flow control, but that’s completely understandable, given the tank’s small size. Small size means small eliquid capacity, of course. Rated capacity is 3ml, but in reality it’s closer to 2.5ml. If you fill the tank as I do, about 4/5 full, that 2.5ml is reduced to a bit more than 2ml of eliquid. While not a juice-guzzler, the Serpent Mini’s limited capacity will necessitate frequent refills, even at the moderate 35–40 watts that I found so satisfying. If you like vaping all day without refilling, then the Serpent Mini — and small tanks in general — aren’t for you, anyway.
Smaller, single-coil RTAs are regaining market share, and Wotofo’s Serpent Mini is an competent entry in the field. I especially appreciated the straightforward and simple set up, the complete lack of leaking, and the full vaping experience at moderate power.
Recommended, especially if the price is reasonable.
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