We’ve all saw it going down in movies like Cheech & Chong or as Cypress Hill would like to describe ‘Taking hits from the bong’. But what exactly is a bong or water pipe and how do bongs differ in material choice, design, and shape?
What’s a Bong?
A bong is a filtration device used to smoke weed and uses water to cool and filter the smoke before entering your lungs. However, bongs nowadays come in many shapes and forms. To make sure you will not feel like you’ve hit the bong too much we have created this overview containing all there is to know about all the different types of bongs.
Types of Bongs Explained
Below we will discuss the different materials, shapes, and designs used to make a bong to smoke your favorite type of herb.
Different Weed Bong Materials
The first distinction we will make regarding the different types of bongs is in its material choice. Every type of material comes with its own advantages and disadvantages and will depend on personal preference.
The glass bongs are easy to clean and because it’s made of glass it will not affect the flavor of the smoke. However, because it’s made of glass it’s more fragile making it not the best travel partner for smoking trips.
In contrast to the glass bongs, these are less fragile making them a more suitable partner to take with you on smoking adventures. However, the plastic material will make it harder to keep your bong clean and could affect the flavor of the smoke.
Because the material is easy to work with they come in the craziest shapes so it might not be your everyday bong to use but could also be a cool piece of your interior design.
If you want to be 100% organic and one with nature while smoking your herb than this is the one for you.
Metal bongs are not that common and are known to have very high durability, however, this type of material could also affect the flavor of your herb making it a less suitable one for the cannabis gastronomists.
Bongs made from silicone have become more and more common in recent years and might be the future replacement of the now still largely used plastic bong.
Types of Marijuana Bong Designs
Apart from material choice, a bong can also incorporate different features which makes them different in use.
In the design of your bong could be something incorporated which is called a ‘Carburetor’ or ‘Carb’. Although it sounds like something alien this actually just a hole on the side of your bong. It functions by holding a finger on the hole and halfway through the hit releasing the finger causing the pipe that’s filled with smoke to empty in your lungs.
The next design feature that could be incorporated into your bong is a ‘Percolator’ or ‘Perc’. This is a piece of glass where the smoke will go through before exiting the pipe. When it passes through it will diffuse and smooth out the smoke through individual pieces of glass. This will filter and cool down the smoke better and faster than any other bong. However, this feature makes your bong harder to clean and is also more expensive in comparison to other bongs.
Bong Shapes Reviewed
Next, to the different types of material and features that could be incorporated in the design, a bong also differs in shape.
The most common shapes are shown and explained below.
The most simple and cheapest is the straight-tube shaped bong. However, his shape also causes the bong to be knocked over easily.
In comparison with the straight-tube Bong, these will have better stability and will be knocked over less easily.
Regarding stability, this shape of bong lies between the straight-tube bong and the beaker-bong.
This shape of bong exists in multiple separate chambers causing the smoke to be filtered by water at least more than once.
How to Smoke a Bong Explained
- Step 1: Find a good spot.
Make sure your bong stands at a solid ground from which it cannot be easily knocked off.
- Step 2: Fill your bong water.
Fill your bong 2/3 from the top of the bowl.
- Step 3: Grind your weed
Don’t put a whole bug in your bowl but grind it up first so it will burn more equally.
- Step 4: Hit the bong.
Put your mouth on the pipe en take your lighter light your weed and at the same time start to suck air through the pipe. When the pipe is filled with smoke take your finger off the carburetor. If your bong doesn’t have a carburetor then take the bowl out of your bong.
- Step 5: Enjoy and repeat.
You can take as many hits as you like however, be careful as hits from a bong are stronger than hits from a spliff.
How to Clean Bongs the Right Way.
If you don’t want the sophisticated taste of your buds to be ruined by the taste of leftover resin it’s important to keep your bong clean. After a couple of times using your bong resin will be built up inside the bong and will be attached to the inside of your bong. Since it’s on the inside, it can be pretty difficult to properly get rid of this resin without the right tools and know-how.
So what are the right tools and know-how than? First of all, you will need a substance that can break down the resin that has built up inside your precious bong. The most-used substances for cleaning bongs are isopropanol alcohol, white vinegar, and salt. Once you have bought the right substances it’s also important to be able to get inside the bong. Now unless you have very small and long fingers you are not able to reach into the inside of your bong. Luckily there are products specifically designed to do this for us.
After you have made sure you have the right tools and substances its time to really properly clean your bong. First, take your bong apart and throw out any old water and leftover weed crumbs. After you have done this you will need to poor the isopropanol alcohol into the bong together with a handful of salt. Once you have done this you can take the different brushes and start brushing inside the bong.
The salt will act as a scrub and the alcohol will break down the resin. Together with these brushes, the resin will be completely removed fairly easy. If you don’t see any resin or unclarities in the glass anymore you can throw out the mixture and flush the bong a couple of times with warm water. If you don’t have brushes you can also seal off the holes in your bong and shake it up and down. Do note that without brushes it takes a lot more time to really completely clean the glass inside.
DIY: How to Make a Bong at Home
If you don’t have a bong but you still would like to smoke with a bong then you could also make your own bong.
What do you need?
- empty water bottle
- a piece of tube
- a bowl piece
- an empty soda can possibly
- paperclip and lighter
Step 1: Create a tube-hole and carburetor-hole.
Take your paperclip and heat it with your lighter. When the paperclip is hot enough it can be used to gently burn a small hole in the plastic bottle. Make sure you don’t make the hole to big because your bong will not work if air can get past your tube-tube. After making a tube-hole it is time to make a carburetor-hole in the top of the plastic bottle.
Step 2: Place the tube and bowl or create these first.
Take your tube and place it into the hole you’ve just burned with your paperclip. If you don’t have a piece of tube you could make one out of an empty pen or use an empty soda can and roll it into a tube.
Step 3: Seal your tube-hole.
When your tube is in the hole it’s time to seal it completely with tape. This will make sure no air can get past your tube causing the bong to work properly.
Step 4: place the bowl piece.
Now take your bowl piece and fit it on your tube and make sure no air can pass from below.
Step 5: Fill your bong.
Once your bong is finished it’s time to grind your weed and enjoy your homemade bong.
How are Professional Bongs Made?
Did you become curious about how professional bongs of glass are made? Then watch this awesome video where a honeycomb stemless bong is made.
The Coolest Bongs Available Right Now
1. Snoop Dogg Battleship Bong
This bong with 5 mm thick glass is designed by Snoop Dogg himself. It is created for smoking concentrates and oils and stands 12,5 inches tall. Two turbine percolators and one honeycomb percolator will make sure taste and temperature will be at it’s best when it enters the lungs.
2. Straight Glycerin Ice Bong
This bong is designed by Zob Glass and handmade by an expert team of flame workers located in Los Angeles. It is made out of American borosilicate glass and has a wall thickness of 5mm and a height of 15 inches. The glycerine jacket located at the perc chamber can be placed in the freezer without freezing. This will cause the perc chamber to be extremely cold for longer periods which will help to cool down the smoke. In addition, to cool down and clean the smoke the bong has three percolators that diffuse the smoke and remove impurities.
3. Bi-Turbo Goldeneye Fire and Water Bong
This bong is designed by Hurricane and is made out of borosilicate glass. It stands 17 inches tall and has an anti-break system to ensure minimal damage when it is dropped. the filtration system exists of small punctures that are found throughout the corpus of the bong. This system will draw outside smoke in and create a strong rotation of smoke inside the bong. The silver nitrate mirroring will cause the tar content in the smoke to be smeared against the glass. This system will create more tasteful and pure smoke for the ultimate experience.
Now that you know how many ways a bong can differ and the multiple advantages and disadvantages connected to these differences we hope you are ready to choose a bong that will suit you best.