The durability and easy survival of being dropped makes plastic bongs more suitable than glass ones. Besides water filtration, acrylic also has benefits such as protecting your lung’s immune system against bacteria in case you get too close to someone else who might have germs on their lip!
Bong smoking has become a popular pastime for many. But if you’ve ever tried to smoke from a bong, you know it’s not a simple task — the smoke can be hot and harsh on your lungs. What are some of the different plastic bongs available today?
Smoking marijuana is becoming increasingly legal and accepted throughout society as more states pass laws legalizing the medical or recreational use of marijuana. And we consider smoking pot through any kind of device other than traditional cigarette tobacco safer because it reduces contact between burning plant matter and inhaled air.
The same goes for vaporizing marijuana instead of smoking it whole. This makes pipes and water pipe devices like hookahs much less appealing when trying to avoid lung damage. Smoking marijuana directly out of its natural state is still widely frowned upon by those who don’t partake and is even banned in certain areas.
However, plenty of alternatives allow people to enjoy their favorite herb without putting too great a strain on their health. One such alternative is using a bong.
A bong is typically used to extract THC, the active ingredient in cannabis, from buds and leaves. Although this may sound easier than just lighting up a joint, it puts greater stress on the lungs. To understand why to let’s first look at how marijuana works.
When smoked, the sticky resin glands inside plants release cannabinoids into the bloodstream—cannabinoids bond with specific receptors in cells lining our respiratory tracts, triggering the brain to feel high.
Because we breathe in oxygenated air while awake, the cannabinoid molecules attach themselves to these cells without affecting them too much. However, as soon as we take quick breaths through our noses during sleep, they attack the thin cell walls.
To protect itself, the body releases cilia. Cilia line the nasal cavity, where they sweep away particles before they reach the lungs. They do this job well enough that we have no actual need for them, but breathing through our nostrils causes them to clog up quickly.
If left unchecked, they could eventually block airflow completely.
The solution is found deep within each person’s throat. Within the epiglottis, a small flap of cartilage sits above the vocal cords. During inhalation, the epiglottis folds over the trachea to prevent exhaling air from flowing back toward the mouth.
Instead, it sends the breath straight down your esophagus and onto the tongue, allowing the muscles surrounding your vocal cords to inflate properly. This allows you to speak normally, though your voice will tend to break mid-sentence.
While the process sounds fairly simple, it takes practice and coordination to master. Bypassing the epiglottis would mean bypassing the cilia entirely, and the result would likely cause coughing fits or choking. Even worse, you’d probably end up vomiting after inhaling.
Because the lungs wouldn’t receive a fresh supply of air, the cannabinoid molecules would continue to attack the cells until all of them were destroyed. Any attempt to clear the mucus buildup by sucking in air through your nose would only force the phlegm further into your stomach and potentially vomit it back up.
This means that anyone who uses a regular bong faces two major risks every time he smokes: getting sick and dying prematurely. Unlike cigarettes, which burn the entire length of the paper wrapper, bud gets burned off naturally while being smoked.
Burning it longer increases heat intensity, making fumes hotter than normal. Many smokers prefer shorter sessions because it keeps the smoke cleaner, but long burns also increase the risk of lung problems.
As a compromise, some manufacturers began creating specialized glass bowls for smoking marijuana. These bowls sit under a stem, often carved out of wood, that directs the smoke toward your mouthpiece.
Though the bowl contains little material, it adds weight and durability to the overall design, preventing the metal tube connecting the bowl to the stem from breaking easily. Bowls come in several sizes, ranging from 3 inches across to 8 inches, and can either be round or square.
Round bowls produce smoother hits since the smoke travels evenly around the interior surface. Square bowls are usually 2 inches wider than the diameter of the stem, providing extra room for moving the hand holding the stem laterally.
This helps create a stronger draw. Some users find better results from smaller pieces rather than larger ones. Most bong stems run about 10 to 12 inches tall and are tapered slightly at the base to help direct the smoke toward the top of the headpiece.
Stems range from 4 to 20 inches wide. Glass bowls aren’t always ideal. Since they contain no filter medium, the tiny water droplets can make the smoke appear foggy or hazy. You’ll want to try a few different bowls until you land on one that produces clean, crisp hits.
With all this talk about what happens to the smoke once it reaches the user, it might seem strange that the way it’s directed isn’t very important. But remember that the goal here is to keep the smoke from entering the lungs, and nothing prevents someone from simply blowing the smoke out his nose or covering his face with a towel.
Bongs are sometimes called “headpieces” or “noseevers.” A good set will include three or four different attachments depending on the bowl’s size, shape, and height. The simplest type includes a single chamber attached to a large hose.
The hose provides a steady stream of cool air that disperses the smoke evenly throughout the bowl. There are also double-chambered units, which provide another channel for directing the hit downward. The additional space gives the smoker more control over how hard he wants to pull and whether he should move the stem laterally to change directions.
Finally, there are triple-chambered models designed to deliver heavy streams of smoke directly to the lungs. Heavy hitters can hold a third bowl underneath the others to maximize intake per session. All of these styles require special cleaning techniques to ensure safe operation.
Various plastics are commonly used in manufacturing different parts of bongs. Polypropylene (PP) was the original choice for most components because of its low cost and ease of moldability. Its major downside is that it becomes brittle with age and exposure to sunlight or UV rays, causing cracks and chips along edges and corners.
Other materials like acrylics and polystyrene withstand the weather better, but they can be difficult to work with. The hand must cut and shape acrylics individually, whereas styrenics can be formed in molds. PP is relatively inexpensive, but it can crack when dropped.
Plastics vary greatly in quality. High-quality versions are durable, lightweight, and resistant to stains. Low-end products are heavier, prone to cracking, and susceptible to staining from oils in the smoke. Before purchasing a new bong, check online reviews and forums to see what previous owners have experienced. Don’t buy cheap knockoffs!
Types of Plastic Bongs
Several companies manufacture dozens of variations of the basic bong concept. Here are five of the most common forms.
This unit consists of a narrow cylinder topped by a cone-shaped chimney. A second cylinder surrounds the opening. Air flows through the cylinders’ interiors and exits through holes drilled near the bottom center point of the cones.
The lower portion of the chimneys serves as a reservoir containing ice cubes. Users typically fill the reservoirs with flavored syrups and cover them with cloth napkins soaked in alcohol. Once full, we can suspend the reservoirs from the sides of the machine using rubber bands.
The Haze Bomber features a unique locking mechanism that ensures the tubes cannot accidentally fall open. Manufacturers claim the system minimizes tar buildups found in traditional water pipe designs.
This bong style looks similar to the standard bowl except for lacking a stem. Instead, a ring attaches to the upper portion of the bowl. Air enters through a hole in the middle of the ring. After passing through the inner chamber, it expands through multiple openings spaced equally apart.
Vaporized smoke collects on the outer edge of the ring. This form originated in China and India but became popular among American hippies in the 1970s. Today, almost everyone owns at least one vaporizer.
These consist of long rigid tubing fitted with a snug fitting at one end. Water fills the tubing via a pump or gravity feed. Smoke enters the bore at the opposite side from the source of water flow. Smaller systems feature adjustable controls that regulate the amount of water delivered and the temperature thereof.
Larger systems employ thermostats that maintain constant temperatures. Either way, the smoke mixes with the water and emerges from the end fitting. A wide assortment of accessories exists to add flavorings to the mix and build elaborate rigs.
My Favorite Plastic Bongs
Acrylic Bong Colored
If you are looking for a cheap and light Bong, this color water bong is the one to choose. Acrylic bongs are popular for their negligible weight, low price, and good smoking conditions.
This cute orange-colored bong has a wide tube which gives the Smoker some nice bubbling sounds while enjoying this device. The smoke is great; water gives it the right filtration. Do not hesitate; just smoke.
Very Thick Acrylic Bong
The Bubble Grip Bong maximizes its water volume capacity with the wide bubble base while featuring raised grips on the shaft above the bubble for your fingers when you hold the bong. A simple but highly effective bong design.
Glass Thick: 6mm
Acrylic Bong Colored Extra Large
Wide and high tube, fantastic design, nice colors–these features characterize this color acrylic bong. Three violet water chambers handle excellent water filtration, and a long red and blue tube provides a suitable way for the smoke to travel up.
This is cheap, but do not let the price fool you–it is properly made and will serve you for a long time. Many clouds of smoke create with this wonderful water bong.