What does RDA vaping mean and stand for?
'RDA' is an acronym for Rebuildable Dripping Atomiser. If you have ever vaped then you know more about atomisers than you think. The main difference between an RDA and a tank is that with RDA atomisers, the user builds the coil and installs the wire themselves instead of using standard replacement coils (used in regular devices, replacement pods etc).
The basics of vaping is pretty easy to understand if you break it down. There's a power source and an atomiser unit. RDA atomiser units are used instead of a tank attached to your vape unit. If your current kit is compatible then all you need to do in order to upgrade to an RDA atomiser is to unscrew the tank and attach the RDA unit. It's not rocket surgery... Yet... An entry level vape kit may not be compatible, so it's important to check with your vendor before you buy if you think you're likely to delve into the RDA world at some point.
How do RDA vapes work?
RDA Vaping is a little trickier (but that's ok, it can be worth it). As opposed to simply attaching a ready-to-go tank, you will need to install / build the coil yourself. With RDA Vaping, you are pretty much guaranteed to make a mess at first, go through a bunch of coils, and get hot spots. But once you get the hang of it, it's easy street, baby!
The main reason to switch would be pricing. Building on an RDA deck and using your own hand made coils is much cheaper than purchasing replacement coils for tanks, as all you require is the wire. If you have the patience, and want to save a bit of cash, this might be the level up you are looking for.
Regardless of the extra work that goes into RDA Vaping, it is one of the purest forms of vaping that exists to date. You get to customise your own vaping experience, which is a major draw for cloud chasers. You can build your own coil which can be customised to suit your resistance, offer bigger clouds, and it is oh so satisfying! Not having a tank gives many notable benefits that you may not have thought of as of yet. The flavour is suited specifically to your taste, and this is a big plus for the picky vapers among us. You could potentially get better flavour if the build is done right as the purity comes from the lack of a shaft the vapour has to travel through, so it remains concentrated. The vapour goes straight to your mouth, which stops it from dissipating.
The lack of a tank also allows you to switch up flavours on a whim. Two puffs and you could be changing it up again (just replace the cotton)! This amount of free reign differs greatly to the tank, when you switch flavours there is always plenty of residue left over from the previous one, even if the tank is empty.
Lastly, RDAs don't have glass that can be broken. Dropping your tank will likely leave it shattered on the floor, as it's made of breakable glass. RDA atomisers a lot gruntier and probably won't break when dropped and this can be an added bonus if you have notorious butterfingers (like me, hehe).
To use an RDA vape, you start by dripping the e-liquid onto the coil and wick continuously. There is no tank to supply the wick with juice so this needs to be done by hand. You are the tank! You control how much juice is on there, and how often you want to add juice. This can pose benefits, but also can lead to the notoriously dreadful 'dry hit' if you forget to keep dripping. If you are just starting out vaping or not a regular then this will probably not appeal to you as much as other forms.
Although RDAs are noticeably cheaper, their use is littered with cons. If you have the skills to install an RDA coil then you will save in the long run, but price is not the only defining factor of this unit. It certainly lacks on the convenience front, so you should take that into consideration. You need both your hands, you can't be doing anything but vaping in conjunction. You have to put your coil together yourself, which can take precious time and you will lose some of your juice during construction.