Vapouround magazine ISSUE 21 - Page 38

FEATURE MOHAMMAD SHAIKH BY LEO FORFAR SIGNATURE TIPS MAKING DRIP TIPS IN THE WORKPLACE OF THE WORLD The Vaper Expo UK is a magnet for the world’s best and brightest, bringing them in from every corner of the globe. But sometimes – and especially in vaping – the best can be found right on your doorstep. At the October expo in Birmingham, we decided to honour the occasion (and location) by checking in with a local manufacturer. No dedicated vaper treats their drip tip casually. Those of us who shop around for the perfect mods have experimented with a multitude of tip types, always seeking the best shape and material. This issue’s Vaping Entrepreneur is Mohammad Shaikh, founder and chairman of Signature Tips, who has carved out a distinct place in the “workshop of the world,” skilfully living up to their city’s legacy. “We started in December 2014,” Mohammad says. “Our background is originally in CNC precision machining. We developed our first eight styles of drip tips as soon as we moved onto the scene.” Many in the trade remember this as the start of an impressive boom period. But why specialise in hardware? Mohammad’s foray into drip tips actually started with a personal venture; making his own perfect tip. One happy accident later, he had more than he could ever use personally, and thought there might be some potential for a new product. 38 | VM21 “At the time, I was unsatisfied with the tip on my own mod and figured I could do better. I went into the machine shop, fired it up to make a drip tip and forgot to put it on single cycle. I came back the next morning and found it had knocked out about eight hundred! I didn’t want to waste them, so I figured I might as well put them up on eBay and see how well they do.” Hardware manufacturing is obviously a cornerstone of the industry, but a crowded one. Mohammad cites his company’s flexibility and variation as its greatest strength. Any new change in consumer trends can be accommodated. “We’ve got an impressive workshop, even for Birmingham. So, when a new tank or atomiser hits the scene with a particular size and shape to it, we can immediately meet the demand and make the correct tips. And I think one of the main appeals of our products is they’re all British-made. Everything we do is in- house, we don’t outsource anything, we don’t import anything except for some of the magnets. “The first drip tips we made were 510s because it was at a time when vaping was all about mouth-to-lung devices. Then people began moving to the 810 size, and over the last few months we’ve seen a return to 510s as pod system-oriented vaping is very popular.”