Geek Vape Karma Mechanical Kit
Geek Vape has established themselves in the RTA/RDTA (Griffin RTA and Avocado RDTA) market with a hand in Sub-Ohm Tanks and now into Mechanical Mods. The Geek Vape Karma Kit ($49.95 at Element Vape) is their first unregulated Mechanical Mod Kit and it’s a doozey if you ask me. There are some clever innovations we’ll discuss later that creates a much safer unregulated vape experience. Geek Vape intelligently went with high-grade Copper material for the construction of the mod, which has proven to be outstanding in the world of Mechanical Mods. The Karma Kit consists of the Black Ring Mechanical Mod and the Karma RDTA + RDA, an atomizer that can be configured as an RDA or a Genesis-style RDTA. I’m happy to see Geek Vape step out of their comfort zone and take risks that looks to be paying off.
The Black Ring Mechanical Mod is an unregulated 25mm Copper tube which offers no variable wattage inputs; just 4.2V (from a fully-charged battery) of raw power. As the battery begins to discharge your voltage drops which means power declines. Instead of utilizing a 510 connection and pin, Geek Vape went with a Hybrid top cap (your atomizer’s positive pin makes direct contact with your battery) even though the very brief manual states it’s a 510 connection. The spiral beveled design flows from the tube up to the atomizer giving the Black Ring a unique appearance. It’s going to be a love it or hate it type of situation for a lot of you but I don’t mind it. The Copper surface has a protective coating (Geek Vape calls it a special treatment) that will prevent oxidation or tarnish over time. It’s possible to remove the extra coating if you prefer that patina Copper is well-known for (I left my device as it comes from the factory for the review). The Black paint that surrounds the bottom of the tube that houses the firing mechanism gives the Black Ring its name. As of this writing, the Karma Kit is only available in the Copper/Black combination.
Side Note: Keep in mind with any Mechanical Mod routine maintenance is extremely important not only for safety reasons but to keep your device firing as hard and efficiently as possible.
The Black Ring runs on a single high-amp 18650 battery (not included). The Sony VTC5a is my weapon of choice when I use any device that’s unregulated. Remember to practice battery safety and ensure your battery wraps are in excellent condition. You’ll go through batteries quickly so as soon as I feel the power begin to drop off, I’ll swap in a new battery to achieve that level of vape I’m used to. Thanks to Geek Vape’s R&D department, you can install your battery either direction with no consequence or chance of battery venting! The interior of the tube is also insulated with a plastic/Delrin material which helps prevent potential shortages (hard shorts) and allows for the cross-compatible battery orientation. Inside under the Hybrid connection there is also a small insulator that prevents any shock or jolt that can happen with installing your battery and firing without an atomizer attached. Unfortunately, even with a self-adjusting fire button system, there is still some side to side movement; the dreaded battery rattle. There’s no way to manually adjust it since the magnets within the firing mechanism aren’t strong enough to prevent movement. This doesn’t cause an issue with performance, just an annoyance. The six small air ventilation holes are present but if your battery vents, you’ll have a potential grenade anyway.
The firing switch isn’t the best fire button ever released but for the price of the Karma Kit its decent. From a resting position to fully engaged, I measured a 3.5mm depth which isn’t a short throw by any means. The two magnets make pressing the fire button easy and the engagement has been smooth for the month or so I’ve been vaping it. The entire button housing can be disassembled if you feel the need to tinker. The piece that contacts your battery is solid Copper and is surrounded by a Delrin spring-loaded gasket which serves as the auto-adjustment for your battery. Like I said before, the magnets don’t have enough power to prevent the little bit of play that’s only noticeable when shaking the mod side to side. I never felt it when vaping but knowing it’s there is a pet-peeve to say the least. The button on the bottom is Copper as well with the Geek Vape logo engraved into it. When firing, I noticed very little voltage drop and overall the Black Ring hits surprising hard especially with a fully-charged, high-amp 18650 battery.
The other half of the Karma Kit, the Karma RDTA + RDA is constructed of Stainless Steel with a Delrin type coating covering the entire outside. The coating does help dissipate heat away from your mouth and the chamber never gets overly hot. The big selling point of the Karma atomizer is its ability to transform from an RDTA with a large 5ml reservoir to a Velocity-style RDA with just a couple simple steps (more on that later). The side-fill hole (12mm x 3.5mm) is large enough to fit any dropper or bottle; even if your wicks are in the way. The Karma Kit includes plenty of extra O-rings and seals (Red and Teal) plus extra grub screws. The Silica glass is held in place by a bottom seal with two thick O-rings backing it up and one seal on the top. I never had any leaking and in case you break the glass section, Geek Vape includes an extra in the box.
The Velocity-style two-post build deck features two 3mm x 2mm post holes on each terminal and side-tension grub screws. I’ve cranked down some chunky coils without the screws backing out or cutting my leads. The signature Geek Vape Orange Tri-Tool is included for quick and easy assembly. While the top cap has three notches removed signaling it can be used in both single or dual configuration, you can only run a single coil in RDA mode since there’s no way of plugging the unused wicking slots. The four wicking cutouts (each measuring 7mm at their widest point) provide more than enough space for your cotton. The 510-center pin is Gold-plated and protrudes over a millimeter from the 510 connection which makes it safe to use not only with the Black Ring mod but any mechanically-driven device.
The side airflow consists of three 3.5mm x 2mm airflow slots on each side that can be adjusted by spinning the top cap. The restriction is way too tight (at least with the version I received) and without some eJuice lubrication is extremely difficult to adjust. When it comes time to dissemble the RDTA, removing the top cap from the chamber proves to be just as challenging; it takes some serious muscle to get them separated. The chamber fits nicely over dual O-rings that surround the top and bottom of the side-fill slot and a seal towards the bottom base. Depending on my build, I rocked only two airflow holes open which was plenty of airflow for anything less than 100W. Once I surpassed the triple digit wattages, the airflow was wide open. The enormous 12.5mm ID top cap is only 5.5mm tall from the chamber which makes vaping from it quite awkward. The mouthpiece is threaded on so hopefully Geek Vape comes out with additional options down the road. Included in the goodie bag is a 510-drip tip adapter that plugs right into the top cap. But using any Geek Vape Griffin RTA drip tip will also plug into the top cap and is how I vaped the Karma most of the time.
Converting the pre-assembled RDTA to an RDA can happen within a minute or two. Simply remove the positive pole and glass, screw the build deck into the base and there you have it. The pole is squared towards the middle so a crescent wrench or pliers makes the change straightforward. When you install your coils in the RDTA configuration, you’ll need to position your coils way down towards the wicking slots. If you leave the build in and change to an RDA setup, you’ll need to reposition your coils higher so they line up with the airflow slots. If not, the air will run right over the top and underneath which drains the performance ten-fold. I’ve used the RDA only a select few times but the RDTA has seen a ton of use. It’s like the iJOY Limitless RDTA Plus and the WISMEC IndeReserve RDTA as far as performance goes. Great flavor with a large 5ml eJuice capacity results in a fantastic vape!
As far as negative go with the Geek Vape Karma Kit, there really wasn’t much I could find other than the horribly written User Manual. Is this a big deal to most consumers? Maybe not but with a fully mechanical, unregulated device with a Hybrid connection, I would’ve hoped the User Manual would say something about battery safety or include some precautions. I’m just being nit-picky since everything about the Karma Kit is amazing (including the $49.95 price tag at Element Vape)!
Final Grade – A
“If you’re not familiar with unregulated devices, I’d push the Karma Kit aside until you feel comfortable enough to dive in. If you have experience, there’s no reason I could give you to not go over to Element Vape and purchase the Karma Kit right now! Just the Black Ring mod or the Karma RDTA/RDA is worth the price tag but for the complete Karma Kit; you have my blessing.”
Geek Vape Karma Unregulated Mod Features:
- Single 18650 Battery – Sold Separately
- High-Grade Copper Construction
- Magnetized Firing Button at Base – Reduce Friction
- Insulated Battery Compartment
- Innovative Reversible Battery Placement
- Mechanical Output Setting – Advanced Users Only
- Direct 510 Connection
Geek Vape Karma Atomizer Features:
- 2-in-1 Design – RDTA + RDA
- 25mm Diameter
- 2mL Juice Well – RDA Set-Up
- 5mL Juice Capacity – RDTA Set-Up
- Superior Stainless Steel Construction
- Tried-and-True Velocity Design
- Two-Post, Dual Terminal
- 2mm Terminal Post
- Deckmilled Negative
- PEEK Insulators
- Single or Dual Configurations
- Adjustable Side Airflow System
- Delrin Widebore Drip Tip
- 510 Drip Tip Adapter
- 510 Connection