The marijuana or cannabis industry is slowly growing with a wider acceptance of marijuana in society. Even though the sale of all narcotics including marijuana, is prohibited in India after it got banned in 1985, the use of bongs to smoke all sorts of substances in the country is still persistent. Even as the acceptance of the ‘weed culture’ is shallow in India, the followers of the Hindu god Shiva believe smoking marijuana is a way of worshipping the god. Weed is typically still available as an edible in the form of the bhang lassi but not in its raw form.
For regular cannabis users, much like weed grinders, bongs are common ubiquitous tools to smoke weed. They have evolved from a traditional straight tube with a removable bowl into the modern-day one-piece thick glass or plastic structure. Using a bong is a pretty personal experience as you can take your pick from the variety available in the market. Choosing the one that fits your expectations can get pretty confusing, especially for newbies while regulars may know which bong fits their criteria. To help you out, whether you’re a beginner or a regular, we bring you a list of the very best bongs you can purchase online while keeping all the quality features in mind.
Read more: A Complete Guide To Weed In India
What Exactly Is A Bong?
Every weed enthusiast, from long time smokers all the way to newbies, knows that bongs are simply one of the best ways to enjoy the herb. It is considered the fastest way to get high. They can seem complicated to use, but regular smokers know their way around it. The water in them, as well as the filtering systems such as percolators and diffusers, make bongs one of the safer tools to smoke cannabis since you get cleaner smoke that's free of potentially harmful elements such as tar and other impurities.
Basically, a bong consists of a tube or pipe, preferably a glass pipe, with one end closed off for water, with a removable bowl piece near the bottom closed off portion. Water is poured into the tube until it covers the stem, a separate tube that extends from the removable bowl piece to the bottom of the main tube. The dry herb, marijuana is loaded into the bowl and lit, the user inhales from the open end of the bong and the water filters smoke particulate out, catching it, as well as reducing the smoke's overall temperature. Bong users love the smooth and cool hits that accompany a well-made bong. Another advantage of the bong is that one can taste unique strain flavours better due to the cooler temperatures and cleaner smoke, to give you a smooth hit.
Types Of Bongs
Despite many of these new and novel approaches to cannabis use like blunts, joints, thai sticks, edibles, wax, oil, one thing remains constant: the bong is a go-to choice for smoking weed. And just as there are many different ways to consume cannabis products, there are many different types of bongs to choose from. In fact, there are several materials that good quality bongs are made of. Honest Marijuana helpfully elaborates on the bong materials and designs that are listed below.
One of the most popular materials used to build bongs is glass. It provides a clean, pure taste because the glass doesn't affect the flavour of the smoke in any way. It is also very easy to monitor the bong for resin build up because it's transparent. It's also very easy to clean when the build-up becomes a problem. Owing to these factors, a glass bong will often be more expensive than a bong made from other materials.
Plastic is probably the second most popularly used material for making bongs because it is an extremely durable material. You can drop a plastic bong during a coughing fit and the only damage done will be a water stain on the carpet. The material is also fairly cheap when compared with other materials used to make quality bongs. A plastic bong is a great choice when travelling because they are difficult to break and don't shatter or crack easily like glass or ceramic. The only significant downside of plastic bongs is that they might affect the taste of your smoke slightly.
A way heavier and more robust alternative is a ceramic bong when compared to the other materials on this list. Thanks to their general fragility, ceramic bongs do not usually travel well. However, it is this kind that comes in all sorts of novelty shapes, sizes, and colours owing to the fact that clay is extremely malleable and easy to work with. Ceramic bongs can lean on the more expensive side than plastic bongs because of the work that goes into making them. Though a ceramic bong might not be for your daily use, they are certainly great for special occasions or to display as a part of your collection.
Bamboo is another popular material from which bongs are made. Bamboo bongs can range from pretty basic in its design. Some might have just a tube of bamboo sealed at the bottom and some may be fancy and ornate with metal, varnish, and paint incorporated into the design. Bamboo is also another very durable and sturdy material meaning that your bamboo bong will pretty much last forever if you treat it right. It tends to be light in weight and very portable.
Metal is also used to make bongs although the practice is not as common as glass or plastic. Metal is very durable as well as long-lasting. It is also pretty cheap. The downside of metal bongs is that they can affect the taste of your smoke largely and you never really know when it's time to clean them.
One particular material that has become quite popular over the last few years is silicone. Unlike other materials, a silicone bong is not fragile. They are extremely durable, with the added benefit of being quite flexible that makes it easy to squeeze your bong into your luggage or backpack, without worrying too much about space, or even breakage. They're usually made up of a few removable parts, making them incredibly easy to clean too. Other than the entire silicone structure, the only breakable parts are the diffuser downstem and bowl, which are made of borosilicate glass. Regular stoners note that the quality of the smoke is superior to that of bongs made from other materials, so in addition to not having to worry about breaking the bong, you also don't need to worry about any change in the standard of any smoking session.
Naturally, silicone bongs haven't been around as long as bongs made from other materials such as glass, acrylic, and ceramic, so the number of silicone bongs available is limited. But if you want a bong that can travel easily, the silicone bong should be your top pick.
1. Carburetor Bong
A bong can be characterised by it either having a hole in the middle somewhere or not. If your bong does have a hole, it is a carburettor bong. Carburettors are considered to produce a much more intense hit. This is because, when you release your finger, the carburettor hole allows fresh air into the pipe. This fresh air forces the smoke into your lungs more rapidly and makes it easier to inhale all the contents of the pipe.
2. Straight Tube Bong
Straight tube bongs are the simplest design available in bongs. They consist of a simple tube sealed at one end with a stem and a bowl poking out of the side. You pour a bit of water in the tube, place your ganja in the bowl, and go. It is the most simple, straight forward smoking apparatus out there.
3. Beaker Bong
The beaker shaped bong is quite similar to the straight tube bong except that the bottom is flared into a cone shape that looks like a beaker, true to the name. Beaker bongs are more stable than straight-tube bongs because they have a larger base. The smoking process includes the same : just add water, cannabis, and flame and you're good to go.
4. Round Base Bongs
Round base bongs are similar to beaker bongs in that the base is wider than the tube and the mouthpiece. Round based bongs, as the name suggests, have a sphere shaped water chamber with a flat base. They are more stable than straight tube bongs, but slightly less stable than beaker bongs because the flat surface is smaller. Regardless of the shape being straight, beaker, or round, the basic mechanics of using them are the same.
5. Multi-Chamber Bong
A multi-chamber bong, also called a recycler bong, is a variation of the straight-tube bong, even though the chamber can come in various shapes. In a multi-chamber bong, the straight tube is separated into two chambers connected by a tube or third chamber. Both upper and lower chambers hold water so the smoke gets filtered twice. This produces a much cooler, much smoother smoke than the regular straight tube, beaker, or round base bongs can provide. Of course, multi-chamber bongs are more difficult to build which makes them more expensive than the simpler ones available. Another important feature to consider is that these are also harder to clean.
6. Percolator Bong
A percolator bong, or bubbler bong, can be a straight tube, beaker shaped, round-based, or literally any other shape you can imagine. The thing that makes this kind unique is that they contain a percolator. The percolator is a piece of glass that dissipates the smoke before it passes through the water and causes a bubbling effect in the bong. Spreading the smoke out in that way helps to filter it better and cool it faster. The percolator can be at the bottom of the bong (a single chamber percolator), in another chamber (a multi-chamber percolator), or both (a multi-chamber, multi percolator). The features to consider are the complexity of this type of bong, they can be difficult to clean, not to mention more expensive.
7. Bucket Gravity Bong
Gravity bong typically relies on the vacuum that water leaves behind when it leaves an enclosed space. Gravity bongs come in two types: bucket and waterfall. The simplest version of the bucket gravity bong uses a plastic bottle and a bucket full of water. This is a fun project to try now and again, but if you use this type of bong regularly, it is better to purchase a professionally built model. Once built and packed, light the weed in the cap and slowly pull the water bottle out of the water being sure to stop before the bottle comes completely out. Pulling the bottle up creates a vacuum in the enclosed space on top of the water that pulls the smoke down into the bottle. When the bottle is filled with the smoke, remove the cap and inhale the contents.
8. Waterfall Gravity Bong
The waterfall gravity bong is similar to the bucket gravity bong but instead of pulling the bottle up to create the vacuum, you drain the water out the bottom. When everything is assembled, light your cannabis and let the water drain from the bottle. As the water leaves, it pulls the smoke down into the bottle. When the water has completely drained, plug the hole with your finger or tape, remove the cap from the top, and inhale to your heart's (or lung's) content. As with the bucket gravity bong, you can make a waterfall gravity bong from household materials. If you do want to use it regularly, purchase a professionally built glass or plastic model.
9. Home Made Bong
The gravity bongs discussed above to make a nice segue into the wonderful world of homemade bongs. You can simply construct a simple substitute from everyday materials like fruit, water bottles, candy, building blocks, and even snow. They may not look as fancy as a coloured glass bong, but they surely get the job done.
How To Pick A Bong?
According to Green Camp, some important aspects should be considered before investing in a bong. To start off, you should always ask:-
- Is the glass thick?
- Does it look sturdy?
- Does it have very few moving parts?
- Does it clean easily?
- Does it have a decent volume?
Some other things that you should look for in a bong are its airflow (although you won't really know the airflow until you've used it for a few times) restriction and smoke diffusion. The glass type, sturdiness and the moving parts are very important as they will determine the longevity of your glass if you are careful with it. For example, it is best to avoid china glass as it is a cheaper quality, making it less durable and one that interferes with your smoke delivery. Of course, if you handle your bong carelessly, no amount of sturdiness will save it.
If you are clumsy, you'll want your bong to have as few moving parts as possible. Parts that stick out far from the core of the bong also contribute to them being easily breakable, so you might want to keep that in mind while shopping as well.
Best Bongs Available Online
1. OutonTrip Glass Bong
This glass bong tops the list of the best ones in the market. It contains an ice chamber, which means that the neck of the water pipe is designed in a way that it allows the user to put ice cubes into the pipe. This allows the smoke to pass through the ice cubes which makes it cool for a smooth hit. This item also features a 14.4 Mm Joint Shooter or Downstem, a glass tube that allows smoke to travel from the joint to a chamber of the bong. Removable downstems provide multiple benefits, as they not only filter smoke with their slits or holes but also their removability enables a simpler cleaning process. This glass pipe contains thick glass which increases its durability as well as its longevity. The thick glass construction makes it's less likely to break. It is no doubt that such a durable and premium bong available at such an affordable rate has got some of the best ratings.
2. Stoning Labs® Beaker Glass Bong
A classic, reliable beaker style bong, the Stoning Labs beaker bong is another high rated option available online. It is designed and structured in a way to provide maximum airflow and minimum resistance to help deliver smooth and refined smoke intake. It comes with a shooter, which is different from your regular shooter as it has slits at the bottom which help with easy diffusion. As a third measure, there is an option to buy the bong along with one percolator or multiple, as per your personal preference. It also has ice notches which help you stack some ice cubes to further cool the smoke for a better hit. It is a strong contender amongst the quality bongs and absolutely worth the praise and investment.
3. Metier Mini Smoking Bong
This mini acrylic bong, available in a number of shades to appeal to all customers is another great pick for smokers. The small size, durability, non-fragile and lightweight features of this colourful bong enable smokers to easily carry it around with them. It is a kind of Plastic which looks like glass with its high gloss premium finish which is achieved through high-quality polish material and skilled workmanship. These come with all the fittings to make bong ready to use including a metal bowl and stem, metal screen fitted into the bowl to hold your material, rubber and 1 piece of the extra grommet. This compact yet well-equipped item is a go-to pick for smokers who want a dependable bong that keeps easy on the pocket.
4. Metier Acrylic Mini Waterpipe Bong, Portable Hookah, Smoking Pipe
This high-quality double bulb acrylic bong comes in a sleep black colour that promises to look great in your collection. The tube pipe diameter is a comparatively larger one. This 8-inch tall bong makes your experience unforgettable as the double bulb ensures every smoker a better hit. The item comes with an extra 1 piece rubber grommet, rubber feet, a stem and a bong bowl. This attractive, premium quality bong available at budget-friendly prices is a great pick for those who are looking for a long-lasting product.
5. Metier Great Saving Acrylic Waterpipe Bong
Another durable, non-fragile and lightweight acrylic bong by Metier is a great pick amongst the best bongs. It again comes with a premium high gloss finish which is achieved through high-quality polish material and skilled workmanship. Bongs by Metier always comes with all the fittings to make bong instantly ready to use. This bong package includes a metal bowl and stem, 5 pieces of metal screens with one fitted into the bowl to hold your material, 1 acrylic herb grinder, 1 additional shooter, rubber and an extra piece of the grommet.
6. Metier 12 Inch Acrylic Ice Bong
Another great item by Metier, this pitch-black acrylic one is an ice bong and 12 inches long. This opaque black ice bong comes along with 2 additional shooters, 2 pieces of rubber grommet and 10 additional pieces of SS screen that are to be fitted into the metal bowl to hold your material. It is again a super durable, non-fragile and lightweight bong offered by Metier, an obvious forerunner amongst the best bongs available online.
7. Pegs 'N' Pipes Rasta Acrylic Ice Bong
This multicolour 8-inch ice bong makes it to the list of best bongs with premium quality material and design. The product allows for easy travel, set up, as well as storage thanks to how light and durable it is. The scientific design enables it to retain and release a decent amount of smoke, allowing for a more enjoyable smoking experience. It also states how easy to use and even easier to clean it is. It can efficiently be cleaned with hot water. This colourful bong proves with its high rating that it ensures a premium hit with its premium quality to offer you, all at a super affordable rate.
8. OutonTrip Glass Transparent Bong
A very small glass bong in a beautiful transparent 'raasta colours' that gives A classic water filtered experience. It has a flared mouthpiece, a kick hole on the side for efficient smoking, a chillum downstem with an integrated bowl. It comes with a socket that is used as a diffuser, in order for the smoke to spread into the water chamber. The socket is also accompanied by a side bowl for efficiently placing your herb or tobacco. The chillum can be used for spreading your smoke into the water chamber, to get filtered by the water. The kick hole at the height of the socket conveniently offers you the option for a different toke hole. Absolutely efficient and easy to use and clean, this bong is a hit amongst the regular smokers.
9. Metier Single Bulb Acrylic Water Pipe Bong
Another Metier product that offers a quality experience with this quality bong. This 16-inch single bulb bong, is a sturdy, durable and an attractive piece to add to your collection. The tall piece comes in various design patterns for your customised choice with accessories like an extra rubber grommet, rubber feet, a stem and bowl.
10. Stoning Labs Glass Bong
This bong that looks like it was picked right out of a chemistry lab, is another great piece by Stoning Labs. The super thick borosilicate glass material enables this bong to go smooth on your throat, unlike most bongs that leave you in a coughing fit. The percolator provides for refined smoke as a first measure. The bent tube design further softens the hit on your throat making it super smooth. The big bowl and an 18.8 mm joint allows for maximum airflow and prime diffusion whilst reducing the drag to a bare minimum. It is temperature tolerant and transparent for a clear view. It may be made of glass but is still highly durable when handled with care. It is also easy to use as well as easy to clean.