Bongs - What is a water bong? How does a Water Bong Work?
Bong information: In Bongs the smoke passes through water
to cool and filter it. Marijuana, Herbal Smoke, Hookah
Smoke, Legal Buds etc., is placed into a bowl on the end of a tube
whose other end is in a sealed container partially filled
with water. The end of the tube attached to the bowl is
below the level of the water so that as the smoke exits the
pipe it travels through a layer of water. The air pressure
in the chamber is lowered through another tube that stays
above the water level in the chamber. When the air pressure
inside the chamber is lowered, air from outside the chamber
passes through the bowl and its tube and bubbles through the
Bongs are not particularly portable, as they tend to be awkward, delicate and heavy. Sizes range from the size of a small pill container to eight foot tall escapees from a mad scientist laboratory. Principally made from glass, plastic, ceramic, and metal they can be an art form unto themselves. The principal benefit of smoking through a bong is that the smoke is cooled. One can put any number of liquids in the chamber to filter the smoke, and beer or other forms of alcohol are often used, but this is not recommended. The active ingredients in herbal smoke, legal buds or marijuana are fat and alcohol soluble and when filtered through such substances the active ingredients go into the solution.
In addition the carcinogens in smoke are water soluble so that when smoke passes through some liquid other than water one loses active ingredients and gains carcinogens in the smoke entering your lungs. One method is to put ice water in the chamber, the cooled water is not quite as effective at removing the carcinogens but the additional cooling is favored among smokers. Carburetors are small openings in the chamber that are covered during the hit and towards the end opened to allow all the smoke to escape the chamber. Occasionally one finds a bong designed so that carbonation is accomplished by lifting the bowl slightly and allowing the air to enter the bowl tube.
Why Bongs? - How to Make a Bong. Simple Bong
Making a bong is very simple, because the concept of a bong is simple. When you toke, you are bubbling the smoke through water before inhaling it. The reason for using a bong is mostly for health reasons. The water does filter out many of the impurities (the resinous tar), thus saving your lungs from inhaling crud. Very hot water will remove the most impurities, and very cold water will cool the smoke for a smoother hit. The anatomy of a bong is simple. It consists of a bowl (with a screen), a stem, a chamber, some liquid, and an opening for the mouth.
| | <--- mouthpiece
chamber---> | |
| | \ / <===bowl
the carb==> O | //
water level --> | ^^^^^ | // <===stem
\ _____ /
The diagram above shows a generic bong. All you need for a simple bong is a plastic soda bottle
(12-ounce or larger recommended), some kind of stem (a metal tube, plastic tubing, or whatever), and a bowl
(use aluminium foil if you can't find anything else). I suggest investing in a tube of silicone it's the best
sealant for plastic, and satisfactory for metal-plastic seals.
After you have constructed the bong and let the sealant cure, don't forget to open a 1/4" hole for the carb. Water fills the container and stem just up to the carb. The water level should really be at least an inch below the carb so that when the bong is tilted the water won't leak. The job of the carb is to regulate where the air will be supplied from. If covered, the air (smoke) will come from the burning herb. If uncovered, air will be pulled in through the carb to force out the standing smoke from the chamber.
Do a water test before you pack a bowl. Pull a lungful through the bong with the carb covered. If you get a chemical flavor, then you have not let the silicone cure long enough, it's toxic to inhale until it's fully cured, then it's harmless. The water test will also let you determine how airtight your bong feels.
Smoking a conventional bong means that you have water in your bong, you have a packed bowl, and a lighter. Cover the carb with your thumb and light the bowl and pull air through the bong until you get a steady bubbling of smoke through the water. When your lungs start to hurt a little, let go of the carb and gently pull in the trapped smoke. If your lungs feel fine as you inhale, then save a little lung space for the trapped smoke, let go of the carb and pull it in!
While there's a wide variety of containers and materials you can use in making a bong, make sure they will be safe. PVC IS OUT! DO NOT USE ANY TUBES MADE WITH POLYVINYL CHLORIDE BECAUSE THEY LEACH OUT CARCINOGENIC PARTICLES OVER TIME. When deciding whether to use a certain kind of plastic or not, the rule of thumb is to make sure it's safe for food. If it's meant to store food, it's okay. Otherwise, don't risk it. Plastic tubing is fine. Glass is optimal because it's inert.
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