He’s A Sparky By Trade And Currently Making Himself At Ohm On The UK Vape Review Scene – So Watt Makes Him Tick?
Gaz aka the Flat Cap Vaper is best known for his vape review videos on YouTube and is one of the newest reviewers on the EcigClick team.
Despite only being on YouTube for a few months, his relaxed, entertaining, extremely informative style and stunning filming techniques has quickly gained followers and he’s currently nudging the 800 mark – impressive!
He’s impressed some of the larger names on the vaping video review scene too, who in turn have not only given him more than a few ‘shout-outs’ – but have also invited him to appear on many live streams.
He runs his own electrical business and is married and father to three kids – so where the heck does he get his energy from?
I mean does he plug himself in to recharge his batteries every night?
And how does he juggle running a business – keeping his wife and kids happy and still find time for both written and video reviews?
I reckon he’s a human dynamo…but that’s enough electrical jokes…yeah I know my puns are shocking…oops 😉
Right enough about me and in Gaz’s own words:
Let’s crack on!
First up a little about yourself – how old are you – are you married – single – looking – kids?
Well I turned 34 last month (April), I’ve been married for nearly 7 years to my best friend (Gemma) And we have 3 kids, Archie, Lillie & Finley.
Me and Gemma were introduced because our best friends were dating each other. So we have a feeling they were trying to hook us up!
And it worked.
I proposed in Australia whilst on holiday with her family back in 2009 – Which in itself was hard work, I’d struggled to find the right time or place to propose, then literally on the final evening I basically forced her to take a walk along a beach with me, arguing all the way as she had sand in her flip flops…
But anyway she said yes and in 2012 we tied the knot.
A year later, our firstborn son was born, Archie. We had a pretty rough start with him as he was 7 weeks early and was basically forgetting to breathe. I lost count on how many times I had to revive him, and Gemma even more so than me.
But we got through it and Archie is now a beast of a lad, tall, blonde and a clever ‘lil lad. Couldn’t be prouder.
In 2017 we found out we were having twins.. Yeah that was a surprise, and again the pair of them came early, Lillie breezed through the whole NeoNatal journey and she was ready to come home within a few weeks.
But Finley had other ideas and we spent about 6 weeks being passed between hospitals trying to find ways to fix him. I wont go into too much detail if that’s ok, but all I can say is that there were various times I asked the doctors if they were simply trying too hard to keep him alive, and if he should just be left to rest.
Moving on to right now, the twins are 100% healthy and so is Archie. I live in a loud house, full of life and energy and I absolutely love being dad, best job in the world in my opinion.
What’s your current job?
I’m a qualified electrician and spent the first 11 years of my career working for my Dad and older brother, but 3 years ago my brother moved to Ireland so I started a new Electrical Contractors & General Maintenance company with 2 of my previous colleagues and have been doing this ever since.
I’m barely at my desk though, we all like to get our hands dirty and there’s barely a day that goes by that I’m not at the top of a ladder replacing light fittings or wiring electrical supplies for machinery. I much prefer that to sitting at a desk all day.
When did you start smoking and how long did you smoke?
Me and a mate used to meet up when we were about 16 (2001) and smoke a 20pack of ciggies in an evening, hidden away, usually in an underpass or a park. And from there it became the old habit.
Obviously, over time, your smoking habits change and after a year or so I was onto roll-ups and smoked around 15 a day. Menthol filter tip of course.
I smoked for 12 years, from 2001 – 2013
When and why did you decide to quit and was vaping your first choice?
When our first son was born in 2013, I said I’d quit, but I don’t think I really meant it at first.
I had given the ol’ cigalikes a ‘try’ but I didn’t really put any effort into it.
But soon after getting Archie home, I became extremely paranoid of the smell. A work colleague had been going on about vaping and I knew it was the right option for me. I just loved to blow smoke and I knew patches or gum wouldn’t work.
What was your first vape kit and nic strength juice?
I got asked this a lot when I first started reviewing and it’s only just this week I actually remembered what my first kit was, when I bumped into the chap who sold me my first kit, and he had a rough idea what he sold me. So I’m pretty sure it was an Eleaf iStick 20w? and the Aspire Cleito tank.
And I’m not 100% on the nic strength, but I was straight on the Element E-Liquids, mostly Watermelon Chill…. Had that lovely gentle menthol kick I enjoyed when smoking, plus a little sweetness from the watermelon… Instantly preferred it to smoking.
How long did you MTL before moving to DTL?
The shop who sold me my first kit spent literally an hour with me, explaining everything, and I swear I tried at least 50 different eliquids on that first day!
The guy at the shop was pretty persistent that I try and get out of MTL as soon as poss and get into the DTL habit. And that’s what I did, literally trained myself that first 48hours to DTL.
So after knocking ciggies on the head after 48hrs, I was after a harder hitting tank after less than a week HAHA!
What was your first DTL set-up?
Well the Cleito really, but after that I can’t remember the second tank I had, cos it didn’t last long! Maybe 2 weeks?
And then I heard of a brand called SMOK! And instantly went out and spent the best part of £100 on the X Cube II and the TFV4 tank – remember those quad coils? I swear they only lasted like 3 days max, but I was loving the clouds…
I was still a noob to vaping and thought I was the bollocks with the flashy LED side firing bar and quad coils.
How little I knew!
What was the first rebuildable you used and did you find building easy?
I’ve said this before that being an electrician, Ohms and Amps runs through my veins, so literally from the start I was interested in the output of the devices, batteries, coils etc etc I was using and so getting into rebuildables didn’t happen straight away, but I knew it was somewhere I wanted to go!
I picked up a Black Wotofo Sapor RDA around the end of 2015 after trying out an RBA on my Smok tank and realising it was a bloody fiddle and I needed more space.
I found building a little tricky at first, but I hadn’t really googled anything, I just knew what needed to be built, understood battery capacity and safety so I went for it.
However, on my first attempt, I was using cotton balls from my wives drawer! Yeah that didn’t last long.
How did you get into reviewing and why?
I’ve always reviewed products online, everything from my Kettle, to every Motorcycle or scooter I’ve ever owned, Google will show you loads of my reviews on all sorts of shit if you can find them. So reviewing Vape products was I suppose a natural thing for me to do.
The more I think about it, the more I think I don’t really have much of a reason why I started reviewing Vaping Products, I got lucky in the first place, my whole reviewing career so far has been based on luck, I e-mailed EcigClick after putting a Youtube review out on the Coilart Mage Mech V2, basically asking them if they would like me to review products, bold as brass, thinking I was the best reviewer in the world.
But to my amazement, they responded and asked me to do a trial written review, so I rushed to the shop and picked up the Smok R-Kiss kit, and did a written review, I guess it was OK, although when I read it back now I cringe. But shortly after that, EcigClick sent me the GTRS Loco Pod system, and I was away!
I guess I just enjoyed writing reviews on things. It used to piss me off reading 10 peoples reviews on a product just to find the 1 piece of information that I was looking for. So when I started in this game, I was, and still am doing it because I enjoy it.
I think maybe I’ve let myself go a little deeper this time. But its an avenue of reviewing I never thought I’d go down but holy cow I’m glad I did.
Another thing that I guess propelled me into the video review side of things was self-confidence, which up until the end of last year, I was lacking.
May 2018 I weighed 21.5stone, so following in my wives footsteps I put myself on a diet and to date I’ve lost 5 stone, which massively helped my self-confidence and self-image.
Thinking about it, I would never have contacted EcigClick in the first place if I hadn’t had lost that weight.
Mad how life works hey!
What’s the worst and best item you’ve reviewed?
Bit of a tough one if I’m honest, I’ve reviewed less than 100 products as yet. But I guess the best product I’ve reviewed, and not because it’s groundbreaking or anything like that, has to be the Hexa V2.0 Pod kit.
Yes a bloody pod kit! But its seriously a decent pod system that I would recommend to a new vaper – It’s just that Smoking-Like experience they’ve nailed. And that why it’s been my favourite. Not that it’s the best thing on the market or anything. Just that it does what a pod kit should do.
And also for sheer value for money, the Oumier Wasp Nano RTA is a Sub £20 flavour banger that I absolutely love
Worst item – Gotta be the tank that came with the Kangertech Subox Mini V2 – The mod’s alright but The Subtank was a shocker, well the coil was anyway. No flavour, and died within a day or so. So basically I was in vaping hell for 2 days.
So I hate it.
What would you really like to review and why?
Ah man that’s a tough one, I don’t really know – I suppose I’d like to review something made of Stabwood haha! Anything from Asmodus would be nice, I keep teasing myself into buying a Lustro Kodama but bottle it at the last minute as the missus would kill me.
I’d love to review a few more mechs as well. But to be honest I’m happy reviewing anything vape related – I’m simply just going on my Vaping Journey and learning along the way.
What’s your go-to vape set-up right now?
My setup hasn’t changed in almost 8 months now, The Hellvape Drop Dead RDA, on the Geekvape Aegis Legend. What a setup… I don’t do any crazy builds in it, just a dual coil 26x32ga Clapton, 5 wraps, about 0.35ish. 75w, that’s my cuppa tea all day every day – Oh and Darkstar’s Code Red e-liquid.
I’m so boring but it’s a setup that hasn’t been beaten yet and I’m actually a bit worried that if I ever find a setup that beats it, I’m not gonna know what to do with myself.
Maybe my Vaping Journey will end?!
What are your thoughts on the UK vape review scene?
Ask me this question when I started and I wouldn’t have known there were so many of us, If you asked me this a month into reviewing, I would have said I made a bad choice getting into it as it’s a busy game.
But now, almost 5 months in – I think it’s great, the variety is amazing, the reviewers in general are decent and I’ve honestly been spoilt by my fellow reviewers, their support and respect has been off the scale in general.
I’ve been a lucky boy. When I started in January 19 it was a rough start, you’re basically struggling to get your videos seen, but somewhere around March I began to get some real amazing shoutouts on Live shows and that’s when the odd invite started coming in to appear on a live show, and it just escalated from there.
The great thing now is, we have a vast array of reviewers, covering every aspect of vaping products, all with different styles to some extent, but all just trying to do their bit, maybe make some friends and get a little bit of self-gratification along the way.
I’ve also been surprised by the support I’ve received from Vendors and suchlike – I’m only a small channel but some have reached out to me and that’s been amazing. I must be doing something right lol
What’s the future of your YouTube channel?
Not sure how to answer this as I have no end goal, I have BILLIONS of ideas and I’m trying to implement them one by one but I’ve also still got so much to learn. I’ve got plans for a Live show, completely different to anything out there at the minute. And I try and do my reviews in a way which isn’t exactly different to all but is my style and my style alone.
That’s the thing I feel that will help my channel grow and I guess that’s why I’ve been so lucky up to now. Being different is risky, but when the risk pays off, it’s so much more rewarding and I’m just planning on doing much of the same.
I suppose the next step is better camera equipment, maybe some fancy editing software, rather than just a camcorder and the imovie package that came with my mac. Oh and defo a new Mac, Top spec – Dear Father Christmas…
How does your partner feel about the amount of time spent on vaping and do they vape?
No-One in my family vapes, just me, and they have their concerns still about vaping, as much as I try to educate them.
You can thank the media for that.
My wife actually quite likes what I’m doing, she loves it when I get Vape-Mail in, I usually get a text from her and a picture and she wants to open it.
I always make her wait till I get home haha!
She gets a bit fed up if I spend too much time in the garage, but then I’m usually working in there as well so it’s not all Vape in my Man-Cave.
What’s the future for vaping in general?
I have my concerns, if Public Opinion as a whole doesn’t shift, and the whole USA crap doesn’t change, I still believe we’re in for trouble, regardless of what the NHS and other UK based studies have shown.
I don’t care where the funding comes from, pressure can be put on any and all organisations and so I feel we’ve got a long way to go.
I’m concerned about Vape reviews online as well, specifically on Youtube, I guess that plug could be pulled at any time.
If we get a bit of luck, Vaping in general will go on and public opinion will change – Then hopefully we will see that weird stigma over vaping disappear and people start to acknowledge Vaping as an excellent aid to quit smoking, and perhaps even a past-time.
Where can people find you on social media?
If people aren’t sick of me just from watching my reviews, I’m on twitter and facebook a lot, and post what I can on Instagram.
But I like the banter on Twitter and the general chat on Facebook. You can also help a lot of people on Facebook easier if they’ve got vape related issues.
- YouTube Channel – FlatCap Vaper
- Twitter – @flatcapvaper
- Facebook – Flatcap Vaper – Ignore the actual Page tho, just find the person ‘Flatcap Vaper’
- Instagram – @flatcapvaper
- Check out FlatCap Vaper Reviews for Ecigclick
On behalf of myself and Jonny I’d like to thank Gaz for taking even more time out from his hectic schedule to take part in this interview – much-appreciated mate 🙂
Don’t forget to check out all his social media links and most importantly let’s get him past the 1000 subs!
Check out his video review of the Hexa V2.0 Pod Kit below and don’t forget to click that subscribe button!