Photos and story by Chris Mellides
The Rig Pig from Vaping American Made Products has a hefty feel and performs exceedingly well. When compared to similar products on the market today, it really is a tough one to beat, and this is due in no small part to dogged American ingenuity and the sourcing of quality materials.
As a result, what you get is a USA made device that looks the part and kicks like a cornered mule.
This device is a mechanical series box with a black delrin core, a solid brass body and all copper contacts. There is no wiring to speak of, so the only limit in performance resides in just how far you want to push the Pig.
It’s recommended that you build 0.4-ohms or higher, which is a suggestion I do not take lightly. I’ve gotten away with building a 0.38-ohm 12-wrap dual coil build, using 24 gauge nichrome wire around a 3mm screwdriver, but I wouldn’t build any lower than that.
Powered by two 18650 batteries, the Rig Pig delivers a combined 8.4 volts of screaming power right out of the gate. Of course, you will experience some voltage drop, but even still, a 0.4-ohm build should get you well over 140 watts of face melting power before the charge on your batteries begins to taper off.
After about 30-45 minutes of heavy use, you’ll receive less of an intense vape before eventually needing to swap them out for a fresh pair.
This is a hybrid mod we’re talking about after all, where the pin of your atomizer (in this case a V2 Roughneck), makes direct contact with your battery. With all copper contacts, the Rig Pig seems to suffer from very little voltage drop, allowing for a hard punch of unregulated power each and every time you slam down on the button.
The orientation of your batteries is important, as is true with any device you’ve used or will use in the future. Since this is a series box and is designed to handle series builds, you’ll want to insert each of your 18650s with the positive side facing out.
Also, remember to use high drain batteries with their wrapping intact. You don’t want to accidentally create any hard shorts, so make sure your battery wraps aren’t frayed or torn. I’ve been using Sanyo UR18650NSX 20A batteries. They work remarkably
well, and come highly recommended.
As I’ve already mentioned, the device has a hefty feel, and is in no way a light mod. It’s weighty, man. Not to where it feels cumbersome, but if you were to chuck it in the rear pocket of your jeans, don’t be surprised if your pants sag a bit.
The Rig Pig’s rugged design makes me feel confident that if I ever accidentally dropped the mod there’s no way it wouldn’t survive a fall, which is reassuring.
The device’s black delrin body dissipates heat and keeps your mod cool. It also has some tasteful engravings on either side of the delrin core. On one side you have the infamous VAMP oil tower graphic, and on the opposite side the words “The Rig Pig” are displayed in all caps in the lower right hand corner.
You’ll also find the company’s liberty bell design tastefully engraved on the copper detonator style switch at the top of the mod, as well as another smaller liberty bell engraving and distinct serial number located on the underside of the device.
The Rig Pig isn’t without its faults. For one, the threaded battery cap is a bit of a pain to get screwed into the complementary threading on the device itself, and has to be accessed with a quarter or a foreign currency equivalent. This makes swapping out batteries something of a chore.
The most obvious thing that will likely disappoint some users out there is that the only atty compatible with the Rig Pig is VAMP’s V2 Roughneck. The Rig Pig is NOT designed for use with traditional 510 atomizers of any kind, so please don’t make any attempt at using them.
Needing to use only the V2 Roughneck with this device can be considered beneficial since the atty allows for a hybrid connection with the Rig Pig, and its unique contact pin is designed to make hard shorts nearly impossible, but it’s still somewhat disappointing that you can’t use your own favorite 510 atomizers instead.
While we’re on the topic. The V2 Roughneck isn’t the greatest atty out there. It’s well constructed, yes, but it’s a run of the mill three-piece atty when you get down to the brass tax.
I know that there are new products in the company pipeline, but at the time of writing this review, the only Roughneck that’s compatible is the V2 and it’s a simple three post design. Nothing special.
Additionally, the screws in the post holes do not look as though they’ve been rounded, or smoothed at their base, and because you’ll likely be using high resistance wires which are generally thinner, clipping your leads on round wire builds can happen if you’re not careful.
Having said that, my experience with the Rig Pig has been mostly positive. I love the weight, the ergonomic feel, the detonator style fire button, and the general balls out performance.
I can forgive the device for its shortfalls, if only because when everything is working as it should, this is hands down one of the best vapes I’ve ever tried or owned. So, take that for what it’s worth, no device is perfect.
The Rig Pig is available for $200 as a standalone purchase, and the Rig Pig and brass V2 Roughneck Set will run you $280.
The Rig Pig and V2 Roughnecks are available in a number of different colors and finishes and are sold at authorized retailers nationwide and online directly through the manufacturer at: vapeamp.com.