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What is a bong?

Essentially described, a bong (also known as a water pipe, billy, bing, moof, baung, etc.) is a type of filtration device generally used for smoking cannabis, tobacco, or many other kinds of herbs and flowery substances.

In construction and function, bongs are similar to hookahs except smaller and usually more portable. A bong may be constructed from any air- and water-tight vessel by adding a bowl and stem apparatus (or slide) which guides air downward to below water level where it bubbles upward ("bubbler") during use.

To get fresh air into the bong and harvest the last remaining smoke, a hole known as the "carburetor", "carb", "choke", "bink", "rush", "shotty", "kick hole", or simply "hole", located somewhere on the lower part of the bong above water level, is first kept covered during the smoking process, then opened to allow the smoke to be drawn into the respiratory system.

A January 1971 issue of the Marijuana Review also used the term.


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Different kinds of bongs and bong filter terminology found in the Headshop world include:

RECYCLERS

10" Multi-Color Glass Recycler Water Pipe

This rare heady piece has a colored pinstripe design and a recycler filtration system. Just a quick look at this pipe and you'll see what makes it so special.

It is decorated with a unique colored pinstripe design wrapped around the lower chamber, and yellow glass accents throughout. The recycling filtration action continuously filters water, pulling it back over the top as you smoke.

10" Multi color Glass recycler water pipe


Afm Recyler Bong

7.5" AFM Ball Recycler Water Pipe w/ Honeycomb Percolator

This unique recycler water pipe features a large barrel with a colored glass ball chamber above it. The first chamber has a honeycomb disc percolator that diffuses smoke and vapor after which the smoke and water is recycled through a colored glass ball, keeping a constant flow of air without any splashback.

Putting it into bong terms, its basically a 14mm female stemless design with a colored disc perc and ball chamber.



5" AFM Mini Recycler Rig With Shower Head Perc & Round Mouth Piece

These mini recycler rigs have their very own mini showerhead percolators built right into them. Made with a 14mm female joint and a stemless design. Watch your smoke filter over and over through three different chambers. This filtration process, or "recycling", will keep your smoke from getting stale. A comfortable rounded mouth piece tops off this pipe. Decorated with AFM decals and available in various colors..

5" AFM Mini recycler rig


PERCOLATORS or "Percs"

7" Banger Hanger Oil Rig With 8 Arm Jellyfish Percolator

These classic beaker style water pipes are fitted with an 8-Arm Jellyfish percolator centerpiece. Percolator arms are secured to each other and to the base of the bong with rigid glass strengtheners. An angled neck and flared mouthpiece ensure comfortable positioning.

The stemless design makes this ideal for hanging 14mm Quartz Bangers.

AFM rig with Percolator


AFM Percolator bong

7.5" AFM Incycler Water Pipe Rig With Matrix Percolator

This scientific rig from Alien Flower Monkey features an internal recycler chamber and a matrix percolator. The perpetual flow created by the recycling chambers will ensure you only get smooth, full flavored hits.

These recycler rigs provide efficiency and reliability in a simple and effective package. They measure 7.5 inches tall and are topped off with an elegant angled neck, colored base and mouthpiece.



DOUBLE CHAMBERED Bongs

14" Double Percolator Beaker Water Pipe with Ash Catcher

Thse It measures in at 14 inches tall and has a sturdy beaker base chamber that will hold plenty of water. It has two percolators with 6 arms each to diffuse smoke and vapor and an ice catcher to cool it off. Also included is an ash catcher bowl that adds a third percolator filter to the mix and will help keep your pipe clean.

Double Percolator Bong

 

Different kinds of Smoking accessories related to bongs:

BUBBLERS
HOOKAHS

ANATOMY OF A BONG



Octopus Bongs are rad
Bongs come in a gazillion shapes and sizes... Some bongs even look like octopuses and octopus bongs are totally rad.

Trivia & Quick Points:

  • There is an awesome movie came out a few years ago called Evil Bong... and then, as if it couldn't get any more amazing, there was a follow up to that movie called Evil Bong 2: King Bong. You should go see these movies!

  • Bongs have been in use by the Hmong, in Laos and Thailand, and all over Africa for centuries.

  • A NORML-MAPS cannabis study performed in the year 2000 found that "water pipes filter out more psychoactive THC than they do other tars, thereby requiring users to smoke more to reach their desired effect".

  • In the United States, under the Federal Drug Paraphernalia Statute, which is part of the Controlled Substances Act, it is illegal to sell, transport through the mail, transport across state lines, import, or export drug paraphernalia.




Why is Bong such a Controversial word? (Legal History)

Illegal Bong Siezure
Cops sieze some bongs and other smoking paraphrenalia in Rhode Island

Of course the answer to this lies in its complicated legal history...

For starters, for a variety of illogical and hypocritical reasons, smoking accessories known as bongs are required to be labeled as "Tobacco Use Only", where everybody knows thats simply untrue.

In countries where marijuana and hashish are illegal, some retailers specify that bongs are intended for use with tobacco in an attempt to circumvent laws against selling drug paraphernalia.

While technically 'bong' does not mean a device used for smoking mainly cannabis, drug-related connotations have been formed with the word itself (partly due to punning with Sanskrit bhangah "hemp").

Thus for fear of the law many head shops will not serve customers who use the word "bong" or "bongs", or any other word typically associated with illegal drug use.


Bong
Bongs are simple things in structure and design.

HOW TO USE A BONG

The water can trap some heavier particles and water-soluble molecules, preventing them from entering the smoker's airways. The mechanics of a bong are compared to those of a laboratory gas washing bottle. The user puts their mouth at the top and places the cannabis in the tube, as shown in the picture.

Bongs are often either glass or plastic that use a bowl, stem, and water to produce smoke. Most glass bongs are made from heat resistant borosilicate glass, allowing the bong to withstand repeated use and heat exposure without breaking. After the bowl has been packed and water has been inserted into the bong, the substance is lit and the smoke is drawn through water to produce a smoother smoke than other methods of smoking do.

To smoke a bong, the smoker must inhale in the bong so bubbles containing smoke begin to come from the stem. Once the bong has a fair amount of smoke built up, either the carb is uncovered or the stem is separated from the bong, allowing the remaining smoke to be inhaled.

Traditonal Use

Bongs have been in use by the Hmong, in Laos and Thailand, and all over Africa for centuries. One of the earliest recorded uses of the word in the West is in the McFarland Thai-English Dictionary, published in 1944, which describes one of the meanings of bong in the Thai language as, "a bamboo waterpipe for smoking kancha, tree, hashish, or the hemp-plant."

US Rolling Nation

STUDIES

However, a 2000 NORML-MAPS cannabis study found that "water pipes filter out more psychoactive THC than they do other tars, thereby requiring users to smoke more to reach their desired effect". In the study, smoke from cannabis supplied by the NIDA was drawn through a number of smoking devices and analyzed. This study looked at the tar to cannabinoid ratio in the gas in output by various bongs, as well as unfiltered and filtered joints, and vaporizers. The results showed that only vaporizers produced a better tar to cannabinoid ratio than unfiltered joints, but that within the cannabinoids produced, even vaporizers warped the ratio of THC (the psychoactive component of the smoke) to CBN (capable of producing medical benefits but is not psychoactive) in favor of CBN. This showed an unfiltered joint had the best tar to THC ratio of all, and bongs were actually seriously detrimental in this respect.

MAPS also reviewed a study that examined the effects and composition of water-filtered and non-filtered cannabis and tobacco smoke. It found that when alveolar macrophages were exposed to unfiltered smoke, their ability to fight bacteria was reduced, unlike exposure to water-filtered smoke. It also found substantial epidemiological evidence of a lower incidence of carcinoma among tobacco smokers who used water-pipes, as opposed to cigarettes, cigars, and regular pipes. "It appears that water filtration can be effective in removing components from cannabis smoke that are known toxicants... The effectiveness of toxicant removal is related to the smoke's water contact area."

Specially designed water pipes, incorporating particulate filters and gas-dispersion frits, would likely be most effective in this regard; the gas-dispersion frit serves to break up the smoke into very fine bubbles, thereby increasing its water-contact area."[11] These frits are commonly referred to as diffuser for the way that they diffuse (or disperse) the smoke as it exits the downstem, and usually consist of small holes or slats at the end of the downstem. This study suggests that a bong's smoke is less harmful than unfiltered smoke.

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ETYMOLOGY OF THE WORD BONG

According to Wikipedia, the word bong is an adaptation of the Thai word bong or baung (Thai: บ้อง), which refers to a cylindrical wooden tube, pipe, or container cut from bamboo, and which also refers to the bong used for smoking.


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Hitting the tallboy straight tube bong


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