A bong is a water pipe used to smoke cannabis. The bong works by material being burned in the bong, producing smoke which is then filtered through water, cooling down the smoke with its chill factor. A bong consists of 6 parts:
Downstem – Connects to the bowl piece with an inside-threaded joint and fills with water.
Bowl with stem – Hold your materials that will be smoked.
Chamber – Occupies most of the bong’s volume leading up to the percolator/precooler where it flares out into a larger surface area for more cooling before reaching the mouthpiece.
Percolator/precooler – A series of slits or holes designed to break up the bong water into lots of bubbles. The bong user inhales from here.
Mouthpiece – Where bong user takes a hit from.
Percolator base – The base of the bong with a carb on it, this is where bong users can cover to force smoke/water through the percolator and back down again while bong remains in place. This leaves bongs for sale cleaner for longer as little leftover residue goes unnoticed while being smoked. It also allows you to clear it out quickly if you wish by opening up the carb and lighting what’s left inside. A good perc bong will have 2 or more slits around its circumference near where it attaches onto the chamber, allowing air to filter through and cool smoke/water more efficiently.
When bongs were first invented they had no percolator and it was basically just 2 straight tubes put together, bongs have increased in size since then and now bongs can be as big as you need them to be for your preferred hit, some bongs even have an ice catcher that allows bong users to cool smoke by putting pieces of ice into the neck of water chamber or onto chillum end of downstem while smoking which is great if you’re not a fan of hitting from a hot pipe after a few goes at it, although some bongs are made with downstems too short to allow this feature so make sure bongs that you plan to buy have a long enough downstem for this feature before purchasing bong.
Bongs with complicated percs such as tree percs can offer even smoother hits due to this being achieved through filtration by water pressure alone rather than water passing through slits. Bubble count is also important, bongs with many bubbles in bong water will have a higher resistance to bong air allowing bongs to be cleaner for longer and require less bong slides during a session.
What is a pipe?
A pipe is a bong with no percolator, bongs do not have to have a percolator. Pipes can also be just straight tubes with 1 or more bowls on the end of them, pipes are usually made from glass while bongs are often one whole unit which prevents any pieces from being broken off during use and makes for easier cleaning.
Bong or pipe. What to choose?
If bongs are not your thing then maybe it might be time to give them a chance again, or alternatively bong users could try smoking pipes which can offer hits of cannabis slightly different from bong hits. If bongs are not your thing but you still smoke via bong slides then bongs may suit you better than if you just smoked straight tobacco out of bongs with no water present. There are benefits to both bongs and pipes so either way there is nothing wrong with whatever method suits you best just as long as whatever method does suit you best remains consistent. I personally own both types of pipe for this reason because some people enjoy the taste and hit that only a bong can provide and others prefer the old school way of bongs or dabbing. It’s all down to personal preference in the end but I’d personally go for bong over bongs any day.
Also bongs can be made from any type of borosilicate glass but usually bongs are not cheap no matter what bong your purchasing so I’d recommend buying bongs over pieces if you have the money for it as they’re usually much more pleasurable to use and last longer too, just make sure that whatever bong your buying is being sold by a reputable brand otherwise you might end up with something that’s low quality. Always read reviews before purchasing a piece online or at head shop because some brands offer cheaper versions of other popular bong brands making it hard to tell which one’s the best bong to buy so don’t go picking something just because it’s cheap or seems like a bong. Hope this bong buying guide helps out!