Water Pipes

Water pipes have been around for a very long time, and are a favorite way to enjoy smoking herbs or wax. They are closely related to the hookah and work in a similar fashion, but are used for smoking different substances.


Water pipes come in many different shapes and sizes. Although some are now mass produced, many are still created from hand-blown glass and are both functional and beautiful.

The average water pipe is composed of five main parts.


The bowl or nail is the part of the pipe that holds your smoking material for either a bong or an oil rig respectively. On a bong, it is sometimes called a slide because you have to remove, or slide it off of the downstem before inhaling.


The downstem is the small tube that connects the bowl/nail to the water in the bottom of the bong. This serves to force the smoke/vapor into the water so that it can be cooled and filtered before inhaling.


Not all water pipes have a carb. It is a hole in the side of the pipe just above the water level. It is kept covered while the material is being lit and then uncovered when you inhale.


The chamber is the tubular area of the pipe where smoke or vapor accumulates. Smoking from a water pipe takes place in two stages. You first light your material and let smoke/vapor build up in the chamber. After the chamber has filled, you clear it with a quick inhale from the mouthpiece.


The purpose of this piece is made obvious by its name. This is the opening at the end of the tube, where you place your mouth in order to inhale the smoke/vapor you have created by burning your herbs. One thing to note: When using a bong, you do not put your mouth around the outside of the tube. Instead,  you place your lips on the inside of the tube and purse them slightly to create an airtight seal.

Types of Water Pipes

There are two main types of water pipes that are on the market today; bongs and oil rigs (also known as dab rigs). Overall they are quite similar in appearance and functionality, but there are a few important differences.


Bongs are used primarily for smoking dried herbs. A bong uses a bowl that is filled with herb, lit, and then removed before inhaling. This method of smoking uses direct combustion to produce smoke. Bongs are usually bigger than dab rigs. The reason for this is that when you are smoking dried herbs the smoke can travel long distances without losing potency. Bongs will often have multiple percolators inside to cool and filter the smoke.

Oil/Dab Rigsbong

Oil rigs are designed to be used for smoking wax or oils. Instead of a bowl, these pipes have a nail which contains your smoking material. The nail is then heated which indirectly heats the wax or oil, creating a vapor. This is known as the convection method. Oil rigs can be smaller than bongs because vapor dissipates more quickly and is not as harsh as smoke.

No matter which type of water pipe you choose, you can find a huge selection here at All In One Smoke Shop.

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