I’m in an RTA kinda mood, so let’s tackle one of the most interestingly named ones I’ve seen yet – the single-coil Wismec Bellerophon RTA. But, unless you like a challenge, I’ll save you the trouble of reading this entire piece – the Bellerophon RTA isn’t nearly as interesting as its name. And it’s a solid “no go” for me. But if you’re into devices that make you lose a few hairs (and layers of skin) read on – your new favorite RTA is here. (for a list of our choices for best rebuildables so far this year, look here)
It all started so promisingly, save for the name, which is ridiculous. Based on the etching found on the chimney, it has something to do with winged horses and ancient mythology. In other words, it has nothing to do with vaping or flavor. I get that it’s getting harder and harder to carve some identity in this business, but Bellerophon has zero connection to anything sensible.
Moving on to more important things… The assembled tank itself certainly looks like a top-tier RTA, with a unique shape, strong machining and a decided lack of “me too” design. But that’s when I learned Wismec left the quality machining for the exterior of the Bellerophon body.
The interior? Welllll…. let’s just say that my hands have enough bandaging to make me look like an NFL lineman. On both of the test models I received, the stainless-steel top cap felt like it was spot welded into place. And both of them required a rubber jar opener, hot water and some serious elbow grease before it would disassemble for cleaning.
(Sadly, one of the two test models didn’t survive the top cap bloodshed. Let’s all raise a glass to a fallen mythological hero.)
Despite the fusion of metal on metal, the rest of the Wismec Bellerophon offering is decent, with the usual array of spare parts, tools, manuals, disclaimers, extra glass section and the now-requisite coils. All in all, a solid package from a veteran company.
One thing that needs to be pointed out to fans of larger atomizers – the Bellerophon RTA is NOT a 27mm tank like it’s advertised. The extended glass section hits that diameter, but the base is a comfortable and common 25mm, meaning overhang won’t be a concern for most. But, because of the squatty height, the Bellerophon seems a little bigger than it actually is. And with only 4mL of overall capacity, you’ll quickly realize the size is largely an illusion.
The top cap concerns weren’t limited to the initial disassembly, though. Throughout my testing, the top cap needed a steady dose of e-liquid to keep things lubricated and threaded as intended. I have to say, it’s a damn shame that the cap continued to be a problem, because my overall opinion might have been different had things worked correctly. But then again, if a vape tank doesn’t open properly, then how can it compare to hundreds of competing items that DO?
The rest of the Bellerophon’s exterior is fairly standard stuff, with a bottom airflow ring that has a built-in stop/guard… and not nearly as much tension as the disastrous top cap.
Wismec Bellerophon RTA Specs:
- Material: Stainless Steel
- Size: 28mm*47mm
- Capacity: 4 ml
- Color: Silver, Black
Wismec Bellerophon RTA Contents:
- 1x Bellerophon Atomizer
- 2x Clapton 0.28ohm coil
- 1x Glass tube
- 1x Cotton pack
- 1x Hex wrench
- 1x User Manual
- Spare parts
Like most rebuildable atomizers, the Bellerophon RTA main selling point comes from its build deck. Of course, Wismec is claiming this build deck is far and away the greatest, most flavor-forward design available on six continents, but the proof always comes from the vaping, not the marketing words.
Spoiler alert – it’s not.
But I’ll give Wismec credit – at least this was a new idea, rather than a rehash of something we’ve seen done 1,000 times before. Here, each of the Bellerophon’s two massive posts has an airflow channel built into it, which lead to the lower airflow slots outside the tank. (Most tanks have a bottom airflow channel on the deck itself.)
But, sadly, this original design simply doesn’t work. For starters, even with the external airflow control open wide, there seems to be some resistance on deeper draws, which led me to several rounds of dry hits. I never felt like my inhales were truly registering against the coils, and the muted flavor and limp vapor production only solidified my point.
Building on this deck is an absolute pleasure. Using the “pressure plate” style of lead capture, the Bellerophon is about as friendly a build deck as you’ll find, and within seconds of disassembly, I had my coils in place and ready to wick. I initially used the coils provided in the box but didn’t like the way they kept scorching my wicks, so I built my own and had better results.
So, for those keeping score – the Bellerophon gets an “A” for ease of building. The performance? Well, let’s address that after a few words from our sponsors.
Observations While Vaping
There really isn’t too much to say here. Like I mentioned a few paragraphs ago, the performance of the Wismec Bellerophon RTA was too stiff and muted for me to enjoy with any consistency. Even with several sets of coils and wicks, I couldn’t get the Bellerophon to TRULY let down its hair, and almost all of my draws were weak and punchless.
While I love that the RTA doesn’t leak (like most of them do, to be honest) I haven’t been able to get the Bellerophon to make that kickass, flavorful cloud of vapor I expected when first receiving the device. No matter how I built, wicked or chose my e-liquid, the end result was the same – disappointment.
Now, I know a single-coil setup on an RTA this wide might imply muted flavors and less vapor, I’ve seen plenty of other RTAs and tanks pull off a hell of lot more performance. And with a lot less frustration.
Long story short – there are a ton of better RTAs on the market… many of which were released in the last few months, and at better prices.
Once I had all the quirks worked out of the Wismec Bellerophon RTA, I was left with a serviceable, almost-adequate vape. But there’s a reason Wismec didn’t use the words “serviceable” and “adequate” on their packaging – because vapers have come to expect more… and they deserve more, to boot.
Check out Element Vape for this, and many more Rebuildable Tank Atomizers (RTA).