Nowadays, there are countless types of bongs you can choose from.
But did you know that bongs were well-known to many ancient civilizations, too?
Some 2400 years ago, Scythian tribal chiefs used solid gold bongs to smoke cannabis.
You won’t find any gold bongs here, but you’ll discover plenty of helpful information and awesome tips.
So, let’s dive straight into the different types of bongs to help you pick the best one for you!
What is a Bong? The Ultimate Guide!
A bong is a filtration device used to smoke cannabis. Sometimes, they’re euphemistically called water pipes, especially in places where cannabis accessories are banned.
Bongs often resemble vases and are thicker on one end with a long, straight tube on the other end. All bongs have a chamber that you fill with water, which filters the smoke before you inhale it. Some fancier bongs are even multi-chamber for even better filtration!
Bongs are used primarily for smoking various dry herbal plants like cannabis.
As the smoke passes through a liquid (usually water), this provides a smoother, cooler smoke.
But no matter how all the different types of bongs look, all bongs consist of 3 common elements.`
1 – Bowl
This is where you pack your dry herb.
Most people will put a filter or screen at the bottom of the bowl before adding flower to prevent ash from clogging the bowl.
2 – Chamber
The chamber is the body of the bong.
The base of the chamber is the larger, hollow end of the bong, while the upper portion has the mouthpiece where you inhale the smoke.
Water serves as a filter, trapping undesirable particles like ash and tar.
3 – Mouthpiece
The mouthpiece is at the end of the straight tube, where you inhale all of the delicious smoke. When you use a bong, you’ll see the smoke collect in the chamber and travel up the straight tube when you inhale.
What are the Different Types of Bongs?
Some types of bongs will serve you better than others. This depends on your mood, personal preferences, and current circumstances, among other factors.
Let’s explore the different types of bongs, the many materials bongs are made of, and the pros and cons in more detail below.
Bong Materials 101: Everything You Need to Know
“It is quite exquisite: three puffs of smoke and then peace and love.”
– Oscar Wilde.
Glass – The Most Popular Choice
Many modern-day glass bongs could be considered pieces of art today. You can find incredible shapes, colours, and sizes in this type of bong.
Glass bongs that come with wonderful accessories, such as ice catches and percolators, provide an especially exquisite smoking experience.
But one of the most significant downsides of a glass bong is that they are easily breakable.
But bongs made from thick glass are easy to find, and they are capable of taking some accidental “beating”.
If you’re looking for a quality glass bong, we recommend one made from borosilicate glass because it can withstand higher temperatures without cracking and is generally more durable than a regular glass bong.
Did you know..?
Thanks to the advance of the 21st-century cannabis industry, you can find unbreakable glass bongs that also come with a lifetime warranty!
Plastic – Cheap and Durable
Like most other plastic products, plastic bongs are sought after for their low prices and durability.
Plastic bongs are easy to clean as well as portable due to the lightweight and durable material. You don’t need to worry about a plastic bong shattering in your bag— unlike glass.
However, plastic wears out over time. Also, plastic bongs can cut down on both the flavour and the smoothness of the smoking experience.
Ceramic – Old School Superstars
The smoking experience ceramic bongs provide lives up true to their beauty.
Just as delightfully collectible as glass bongs, ceramic bongs are effortless to clean and maintain.
On the downside, they are usually heavier than silicone or plastic bongs.
Also, they are durable yet quite fragile. It is best to keep a ceramic bong for at-home (indoors) use only.
While great for their old-school feel benefits and their eco-friendliness, ceramic bongs are often difficult to accessorize.
This type of bong also typically falls short on the accessories, with limited options for percolators and ash catchers.
Bamboo – Good for You, Good for the Environment
Bamboo is one of the most ancient materials used for the creation of bongs.
The very word “bong” is of Thai origin and comes from the word “buang.”
Moreover, “buang” refers specifically to the bamboo bongs that were commonly used in Central Asia back in the 16th century.
Did you know..?
Ritual cannabis burning in Central Asia dates as far as 5000 years ago, according to archeologists!
Metal – Extremely Durable but Overall a Poor Choice
Metal bongs are hard to come by, and that’s mostly because they are relatively low in demand.
For sure, metal bongs make one of the most durable options if you’re looking for a stoner-friendly gift that will last for generations.
However, metal bongs do not offer the best smoking experience. That’s because metal negatively affects the flavor and smoothness of the smoke.
Also, it is not possible to see through. Thus, if you want to inhale a good amount of smoke, it can get really tricky.
Pipes work using the same principle as bongs.
There is a bowl at one end of the tube and a hole at the other end.
Sweet Puff Pipe
The tube’s length is between 8cm to 20cm and is curved at the end at 90 degrees.
Once you load cannabis accurately into the bulb, you can indulge in a wonderful smoking experience.
A combination of a water pipe and a bowl, the bubbler is a mini version of a bong.
Dry pipes function without added water. They are easy to carry around, use, and maintain.
While being compact and economical, with dry pipes, the smoke is flavoursome but harsher and hotter.
Because of the different accessories and attachments, water pipes are not the most effortless-to-carry-around choice.
For those who need a home smoking device, water pipes offer a smooth experience, plus they’re easy to use.
Bong Designs: Taking the High Experience to the Next Level
All bongs, regardless of the material they are created from, use the same science to work.
However, different designs can provide additional benefits.
Yes, bong designs are related to functionality and the smoking experience itself.
Carburetor bongs come with a carb hole, also known as a shot hole or carburetor.
A carburetor serves an important function: it clears the smoke out of the chamber. Usually, carb holes are placed on the left or backside of a bong.
To inhale the smoke, you need to cover the carburetor with your finger. Once the chamber is filled with smoke, you need to take your finger off and, finally, inhale.
The design of the straight-tube type of bong is just as straightforward as its name.
Straight-tube bongs are effortless to use and often taller in size.
Straight-tube bongs are typically thicker for increased durability as well. Here are some pros and cons of using a straight-tube bong.
Inspired by lab equipment, beaker-shaped bongs are a fairly common type of water pipe. The beaker shape at the base provides increased stability.
The bottom chamber of the bong is shaped like a sphere, while the base itself is flat.
Thanks to the sturdy, reliable base, these bongs typically come in taller designs. Often, you’ll find them coupled with percolators.
Also known as a recycler bong, the tube of multi-chamber bongs are separated into two chambers.
The multi-chamber design allows the smoke to be filtered twice, providing a smoother experience than beaker-shaped, round-base, and straight-tube bongs.
Percolator bongs provide one of the smoothest smoking experiences by cooling down and filtering the smoke to perfection.
Bucket Gravity Bong
Whether DIY or commercial-grade, bucket gravity bongs are awesome (and unique).
By using two bottles, the smoke is funnelled into the user’s lungs, offering a massive and quick-hitting smoking experience.
Waterfall Gravity Bong
A waterfall bong uses water to draw a thick, dense smoke, thanks to the changing air pressure.
Apples, watermelons, melons, strawberries, potatoes, plastic bottles, a piece of pizza – you can turn any of these into a homemade bong device.
Cannabis keeps teaching us so much about creativity!
What are the Best Type?
There is no for-everyone “best” bong ever.
Different types of bongs can prove to be the best based on the occasion, setting, and personal preferences.
So, the most friendly advice when it comes to picking the best type of bong out of the bunch boils down to…
Glass Bongs – Our Recommendation
Newbie cannabis users may prefer to start with something more affordable, like a plastic bong.
However, experienced ganja connoisseurs, as well as medical marijuana users who want nothing less but the smoothest smoking experience, will certainly choose to have glass bongs in their go-to collection.
In general, bongs reflect one’s personality, and with their uniquely designed pieces, glass bongs remain all-time favourites.
Before You Inhale the Good Vibes: Cannabis Users Also Ask
What’s the difference between a bubbler and bong?
Bubblers are hand-held devices, while bongs are standalone devices. Unlike bongs, most bubblers don’t have removable bowls. In both appearance and function, bubblers closely resemble pipes, although the strength and size of each hit you take fall somewhere between that of a dry pipe or a bong.
Do all the different types of bongs use water?
All bongs use water as an essential part of an improved, highly elevated smoking experience. Water serves as a filter, making the smoke feel smoother. It is possible to use a bong without water; however, this results in rather harsh and intense smoke.
There are also flavoured bong water products available if you’d prefer your smoke to have some extra taste, while others will sometimes use tea, juice, or sparkling water instead of just regular water in their bong.
Another favourite is using ice water in your bong. Many people swear by ice water’s ability to provide an even smoother smoke than regular water.
Do percolator bongs get you higher?
These types of bongs offer the highest-quality smoking experience. However, they do not get you higher than any other types of bongs. Interestingly, slightly more THC is lost when using percolator bongs, as compared to using bongs without percolators.