FIRST IMPRESSION OUT OF THE BOX:
The UD Athlon 25 comes in a hard, clear, plastic box with a cardboard sleeve. Overall, the packaging is done very nicely. The first impression is, this tank is pretty big considering it only holds 4 mls of liquid. So far, I’m really liking the baby blue o’rings.
WHAT’S IN THE BOX:
- Athlon 25 tank
- Preinstalled .15 coil
- Velocity styled deck
- Spare glass
- Spare o’rings in blue, red and clear
- Spare deck screws
- Allen wrench
- User manual
- Warranty card
FROM TOP TO BOTTOM:
One of the first things you will notice on the Athlon 25 is the 15.5 mm wide bore Delrin drip tip. Unfortunately, UD has decided to go the route that a lot of other companies have been going down lately by providing a female drip tip. The female drip tip slides onto two o’rings that protrude from the top cap on a metal piece. The metal piece that sticks out of the top cap will accept 510 drip tips but it looks kind of stupid because you have this big piece jutting out of the top cap with two rings that are exposed. China really has to start listening to us about these female drip tips. I mean enough already, nobody wants these types of setups. Vapers want 810 or 510 openings for their drip tips. I just don’t know why they don’t understand this. The other problem with the Athlon drip tip is you only get one. Really? If you are going to do a proprietary drip tip, at least have the courtesy to include two of them just in case I happen to lose one. It’s the only fair thing to do if you are going to force me to use a proprietary drip tip and limit my choices.
Putting all the drip tip and top cap drama aside, the top cap itself is actually machined very nicely with some pretty good knurling on it. The knurling may not be the deepest but it does help you get a grip when you are trying to refill your tank. There is an oring on the inside of the top cap that will make sure this tank does not leak. The threading on the top cap is good but you do have to push down a little bit in order to get those threads to catch. Once you remove the top cap, you’ll see two kidney bean-shaped fill ports. They are on the small side but so far, I have been able to use all of my juice bottles without a problem. This tank does have a 4 ml capacity. There is a 2 ml extension plate sold separately which UD did not send to me for this review. Adding the extension would increase your capacity to 6 mls.
Under the fill ports, you have the AFC. Remember this is a top airflow-only tank. The AFC does have three rectangular shaped air slots. The airflow on this tank is not wide open at all. It is more like a mid range lung hit that runs the full spectrum of mid range types of airflow. Let me explain, it’s not a really loose lung hit and it’s not a very restrictive lung hit. It’s right in the middle part of a medium lung at that. It is a kind of loose airflow but you can definitely feel the restriction. With all three of the slots wide open, it’s almost on the airy side but it’s not quite there. With one slot open, it’s not quite a mouth to lung vape but more of a restricted direct lung hit. Open just two slots and it’s right in the middle of the other two descriptions I just gave. The AFC does have stoppers on both sides and the action on it is very smooth and easy.
The barrel has an extremely conical design to it and I am sure it definitely contributes to the intense flavor that you will get from the UD Athlon 25. Since it is a top airflow only tank, the chimney has to be double-walled by design. What happens is, air goes down the chimney and through the exterior wall, the air then hits the coil and comes back up through the inner wall. To be totally honest I have never been a big fan of top airflow only tanks, but this particular tank has made a believer out of me. It does have some great flavor and I have to say that so far, I have been pleasantly surprised.
The orings on the bottom and top of the tank are of a good thickness and I love the fact that they included plenty of spares with different colors. The Athlon does not have any JFC but in reality, it’s not needed because there is no bottom airflow. I have never seen this tank sweat juice or leak at all. The base is 25 mm and it does have a cup like interior that accepts drop in coils. UD also made a drop in RBA deck for it. When you use the RBA deck, you have to make sure that you have the air holes on each side of the outer chimney. The factory coils you can drop in and you don’t have to worry about lining anything up. The outer ring of the base has a trapezoid kind of design to it. The 510 is gold plated the length of the tank measures 47.5 mm from top to bottom.
THE DECK AND COILS:
I’ve got to be totally honest, the first time I wicked this thing, I messed it up big time. Yes, it’s a velocity style deck but to be honest, it looked like it wicked very similarly to an Aromamizer Supreme. I found out very quickly that it does not. The problem is, if you wick it like a Supreme and lay your cotton across the deck, you will severely hinder the airflow. As you already know from the previous sections in this review, the airflow is not that loose, to begin with. The deck on the Athlon 25 needs short wicks. You have to take care and make sure that you tuck them in good so they do not come anywhere near the the air flow. The RBA deck definitely has a tighter drawer than the factory coil but not by much. It is tight enough for me to bring it up here though. At the same time, the RBA section also has better flavor than the factory coils.
The factory coil is well done. I love that UD is using SS 316 in the coils that they provided. I really don’t understand why other manufacturers don’t do this. I love vaping in TC so this is a definite plus for me. It’s just a very smart move on UD’s part because they can appeal to the TC and power vaper with just one coil. I really do wish more companies would take this approach. Hint, hint, wink, wink, Smok. The factory coil is a .15 octuple coil that is rated from 60 to 120 watts. I get a great vape off of it and the flavor is excellent as well. The coils are extremely easy to install because they are the drop in type. I want to commend UD on an excellent job, well done.
BUILDING AND WICKING:
The deck on the RBA head is not big at all. You’ll be able to get simple Clapton’s in but that will probably be it. Anything bigger probably will not fit. The RBA section has post holes that measure 2.5 mm by 2 mm. Of course, there are two terminals per post and the deck itself is only 16.5 mm. I must stress again that the wicks need to be kept short and out of the way of the airflow when building and wicking this RBA section. Other than that, it just builds like a typical velocity style deck.
HOW DOES IT VAPE?
Everyone who reads my reviews knows that I am a TC vapor and a flavor Chaser. I am really not into those super cloudy high wattage tanks. I do like to vape like that once in a blue moon but definitely not all the time. I do love the airflow on this tank. It is super smooth and it has just the right resistance for my vaping style. I get really good flavor and I enjoy the deck on this tank. I definitely like the vape quality that I get from the RBA section over the factory coils. I’m not saying the factory coils are not good because they are more than good, they are actually very good. In fact, they borderline on being great and they last pretty long as well. I have a coil in there for 10 days and it still tastes great with no significant loss of flavor. All that being said, I still like the RBA better. When I do run the factory coil, I like it right around 85 watts in TC at 500 degrees. Great vape!
Right now I am using the RBA with simple 2.5 mm ID, dual Clapton’s, ohming out at .25 at 65 watts in TC at 480 degrees. I am getting just a wonderful vape. The flavor is intense and I get just enough restriction without affecting the clouds too much. I’m really surprised at the flavor that I get out of this tank because being a flavor chaser at heart, I do tend to gravitate towards bottom airflow tanks. Another nice thing about the Athlon 25 is that it does not rip through juice like some tanks being made today. This tank doesn’t exactly sip the juice but it doesn’t plow through it either like a TFV12 Cloud Beast King.
This is definitely my kind of tank because it suits exactly the way I like to vape. It has the air flow, flavor, and clouds that I like. It’s not a super airy, juice-sucking cloud monster, but it is a great compromise of flavor and clouds. For lack of a better term, it is a very middle of the road vape. I almost hate to use that type of wording but let’s face it, not everyone vapes at 200 to 300 watts. In fact, I’ll bet, most vapers probably vape anywhere between 40 and 120 watts. If you are in the mid to high range of that average that I just gave you, then you will probably love the Athlon 25 by UD.
Yes, the Athlon 25 does have its little issues here and there but what tank doesn’t? What it boils down to is the important thing, which is the vape quality that you get off of a tank. The pluses on the Athlon 25 definitely outweigh the minuses. Speaking of pluses, I forgot to mention that this tank is great for shoving in a pocket or bag because it just does not leak. So, if your vape style is similar to the one that I described, definitely go out and pick yourself up a UD Athlon 25. It is DeucesJack approved and I promise you will not be disappointed.
PROS AND CONS:
A note about Pros and Cons. These are my Pros and Cons. They are very subjective. What may be a pro to me could be a con to you and vice versa.
- No leaks
- RBA included
- Factory SS 316 coils
- Conical design
- Machined well
- Drop in style
- Smooth airflow
- Not a juice killer
- Very good cloud production
- Lots of spare parts
- Proprietary drip tip
- No spare drip tip
- 2ml extension not included
- RBA deck is small
- Diameter: 25mm
- Capacity: 4ml
- Thread: 510
- 25mm diameter and 16.5mm Velocity style build deck
- Easy top filling and top targeted airflow
- Amazing flavor with huge vapor production
- Plug-pull style coil installation system
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