Some drugs need special equipment. The most famous of the drugs that need such equipment is, of course, pot. No, we are not going to bore you with twenty brain dead blueprints for how to build a pipe or bong (though you might get inspired if you like projects). But, we will go over some of the legal issues concerning paraphernalia, suggestions for smoking in situations where no one has anything to smoke from, and general observations from the veterans!
Once again, our standard Free Dope article warning: Do not do any drugs if you are homeless or in a volatile situation. You need all your wits to survive. Not to mention, you have much less rights about searches while on foot.
LEGAL WARNING: Drug paraphernalia caries just as stiff a fine as possessing small amounts of drugs and possible jail time in many parts of the Empire. Sometimes the residue in the pipe matters, sometimes not. Even cigarette papers can be considered paraphernalia if not accompanied by rolling tobacco in some areas. Know your local laws, keep safe, and practice Security Culture!
- 1 Makeshift Devices
- 2 Bongs and Pipes
- 3 Joints and Blunts
- 4 Vaporizers
- 5 Joint, Pipe, and Bong Etiquette
Do not listen to the myths of using the thin paper found in many bibles, toilet paper, newsprint, and other bullshit that will ruin and possibly waste the weed and your lungs, too!
If a buddy unexpectedly drops over with some smoke, but no one has papers or any kind of pipe, you can still smoke. Simply get an empty aluminum soda or beer can, bend it slightly for a place to put the weed, poke holes in the top, and fire away. Most folks will always have a can somewhere, even if you get one from the trash and wash it out real good. Out of all the far fetched things out there, this is probably the simplest way that actually works pretty well on short notice without going on scavenger hunts.
Be cautious with this, though. Smoking from a soda can has a strong association with crack cocaine. When crack heads can not get non-soaped Brillo and a straight tube of glass or metal, they use this method very often. The crack head usually makes a bed of cigarette ash on the top holes to keep the cocaine from running when a flame is applied. Some of the more experienced pot snobs may attach a stigma because of this and the fact it just is not very classy. Rarely, stupid cops may assume you are smoking crack if they find it and book you for crack cocaine which has stiffer penalties than pot in many places due to racist and classist policies. Yes, a lawyer and a simple test on the can will sort it out, but still, the arrest record will still read cocaine rather than pot on criminal background checks. Future cop stops will show this when the ID is run and may screw you much later for some job. (even if charges are dropped!). Finally, if you use the same can over and over, the aluminum where the holes are gets thinner and degrades and can get in your lungs.
It is also possible if you have aluminum foil to make a quick pipe by rolling it around a pencil and bending up a "bowl" after removing the pencil. Combine two of these with a plastic drink bottle with two holes in it and some way to seal the holes where the tubes go in, you could have a makeshift bong.
If you have no aluminum foil or soda can laying around, get off your ass and get rolling papers, a cigar, or a 60 cent can of soda! Or -- make your own if you find yourself in this situation often.. Do not listen to urban myths.
Bongs and Pipes
Getting a good bong or pipe is very easy if you are in a community with a head shop and have some cash. Middle Eastern owned convenience stores are also great places to look into as sometimes they keep pipes and bongs behind the counter if someone asks. Some cities will allow these to be sold as long as they are "FOR TOBACCO USE ONLY", meaning they have no screens. Paranoia reigns in many of these places, though. It is so bad that in many anti-420 places that they will chase you out of the store if you even mention pot, so be cool.
If the shop does not sell screens or you are in a place without head shops, fear not. The faucet where the water comes out in the kitchen and bathrooms often have screens can be used if you unscrew them. The home improvement and hardware stores also sell replacement screens for these for a couple of bucks. Get these instead if you are leery of being contaminated from decades of old plumbing deposits getting in your lungs or you live in an apartment and the previous tenant already thought of this.
Of course you can always make your own bong or pipe. It is not that hard and all of the components are 100 percent legal no matter where you are at. Even if a head shop IS available, it may be a better idea to do this. Some of these commercially available bongs are really tacky with guitars, skulls, aliens, and rock symbols which may not be your style. Many of the store bought options are not cheap either with prices ranging from 10 USD to 30 USD for a small one hitter pipe to 40 USD to 100 USD plus for the bongs. With imagination and a small bit of work, this can be as simple or extravagant as you wish. We have seen examples of old ceramic piggy banks, plumbing parts from Home Depot, coke bottles, and even apples (!) made into something to smoke out of. Particularly skilled craftsmen can even carve pipes out of wood, blow their own glass, and even do really fancy ceramic work. Some of these are true works of art! The creators are so proud of them, they sometimes even name them! Optimus Prime, Gandalf, Captain Picard, and Megatron, are all common names for bongs.
There has been much debate over what material is safe to smoke out of. If you look to CorpGov propaganda, they will say there is no safe way to smoke pot and try to shut down any serious studies.
It is generally accepted that glass is the safest to smoke from. Glass does have a tendency to break, though, and you have to be careful especially if your pad has hard wood floors or you accidentally wash it.
Wood is generally very safe, though most are a much harder clean up.
Aluminum should be safe, but there are inconclusive links to cooking or smoking from aluminum and Alzheimer's with life long use.
Stainless steel is okay as long as it does not have paint in the bowl. We have not seen anyone keel over yet. The metal pipes are very durable and much easier to clean.
You should definitely avoid tin, copper, and other low melting point metals, as these can release some nasty chemicals that may mess you up.
Pipe and Bong Legal Considerations
Pipes and bongs have the very bad disadvantage of being the most likely to get you busted on charges if you are careless or unlucky. Big bongs can be really hard to hide and just the sight of one can give pigs probable cause to rip your house and car apart looking for a stash, sometimes dogs and all. Pipes are easier to hide, but suffer the same problem of not being that easy to dispose of. Keep these at the house or if you are transporting them, out of view in a trunk of a car. If you have a big party that may get loud, try to confine smoking to a back room to avoid the rare event a cop will see a bong or pipe sitting on the coffee table when you open the door.
Residue and Cleaning
Unlike joints or blunts, bongs and pipes can be a gift that keep on giving. The sticky black residue on the inside of the pipe can still get you stoned if your stash is depleted. Scraping pipes can get messy, though. We recommend you put the metal of the pipe in the freezer for a few to harden the residue before you scrape to make it less sticky. Sometimes after smoking residue, the remains of the residue on the screen turns white and can confuse ignorant cops towards crack use if it is a pipe. Indeed, even if it is not white, residue still counts as possession in most jurisdictions. Not only that, Smoking lots of residue can mess up screens faster than smoking the good stuff. Soak the screen in rubbing alcohol for a bit to reuse screens a bit longer. Use only specific tools to clean your pipe or bong and use these for nothing else. A pair of cuticle scissors that are broken apart is great for this. A pocket knife or tool that you may take around and use for other things will have some residue stick to it and be hard to get off. This could give you away if someone unsympathetic sees black stains all over screwdrivers or blades.
Wine Bong Water Myth
Some folks may be tempted to be classy with their bong and put good wine or liquor in the bong instead of tap water. They claim it it improves the flavor or can somehow make the toke stronger. This is never a good idea. THC is soluble in alcohol and you will be cheating yourself out of a buzz. Wine, if left in the bong for a day or so, can cause bacteria to grow all up in the bong and can be a messy clean up. It is best to enjoy good wine like it is meant to be enjoyed -- sipped in a glass as you toke your herb.
Joints and Blunts
Cigarette papers are sold in every corner store in the empire. Those under 18 may be carded, though. Tobacco laws sometimes include things like rolling papers and lighters along with actual tobacco in lists of products to ask ID for.
Purists sometimes have discussions over which brand of papers and which size papers roll the best. Mostly between the better brands, there is no real difference but personal preference. The 1.5s tend to be much more forgiving with novice joint rollers, but the pot snobs will scream that the 1.25s give you less paper smoke and more actual smoke. One thing most will be in agreement on is that the cheap papers found in roll-your-own tobacco packs are the worst papers to roll with. They tear and sometimes have horrible glue where they messed up at the factory. We are looking at you, TOPS and Kite rolling papers!
Rolling a Joint
Rolling a good joint is a skill and takes practice. Even a few old hippies with 30 plus years pot smoking experience can still have trouble mastering this art. Many folks that can not get the joint to form right by hand will use a cheat method. They will use a folded dollar bill and roll the joint with that. If using that does not work, there are always cheap rolling machines in tobacco shops that will make even the biggest klutz roll like a pro.
Blunts work really well if you have a good dime or nickel bag, intend to smoke the whole thing, or may have a quite a few folks you need to share it with. If you are smoking just by yourself or with just one other, many times you will have some left over the next time. Unlike the cigarette papers, those under 18 WILL be carded for buying an actual product like a cigar. Some stores will sell just cigar rollings, but most of the time an actual cheap cigar is cheaper. Just cut the cigar and discard CorpGov's drug and replace with your drug. Wet the cigar and put it back together and you are ready for lift off. Simple. Even those having trouble rolling joints have trouble messing this up. Careful, as this tends to get folks a lot higher than a joint because you are putting more in. Only issue is that some anti-tobacco folks may turn their noses up at a blunt since the outside of a cigar is a tobacco leaf, so it may not be for everyone.
Blunt and Joint Observations
Blunts and joints have been accused of being very wasteful. Folks who say this do have a valid point because it is true that a good portion of the smoke does go straight in the air and not someone's lungs. If you are smoking most of the time in a secure area like a house and not mobile, a pipe or bong will save tons of money over rolling stuff all the time. BUT- if you are in a mobile situation like outside, in a car, or similar - a joint or blunt is very easily disposed of. Just eat it! Just do not have the rest of your stash in your pocket or nearby, do not use an ashtray (residue and ash is considered possession many places), and do not have papers without rolling tobacco. You MAY get out of charges. Not that we are recommending driving in a car while high. But, just something good to know. Cops need evidence and if the evidence disappears, it makes the job much harder and they will probably have to let you go.
Developed by tobacco smokers in response to complaints of second hand smoke, vaporizers are the newest development in the world of smoking tools. The vaporizer is actually the cleanest way to smoke. Many smokers swear by it. It does cut down on much of the tell-tale signs of pot smoking. However, these things are pretty steep ranging from 50 USD for a cheap and shoddy one on up to 200 USD for a fancy one with all the bells and whistles.
Some are battery powered and a very few may need to be plugged in.
You can find these in most of the better tobacco shops or online if you want to try this out.
Like bongs and larger pipes, these devices suffer from lack of disposability and stealth if trouble arises and is probably best for home use only.
Joint, Pipe, and Bong Etiquette
Whether it is a blunt or a joint, there is some etiquette involved. You did not think the stoner culture to be all godless criminal barbarians like DARE implies did you? (well, most of the stoner culture, anyways...)
First off: DO NOT slobber all over the joint. No one wants to feel your slobber on their lips as they toke bud. It is called lipping and is considered impolite.
Second thing: Puff, Puff, Pass! You may be getting baked, but someone else may be waiting to hit it before it turns to ash. If there are two or more joints being passed in a large group, do not be still holding one joint when the second comes around!
Third point, is debatable. Some say pass counter-clockwise and others say clockwise. It probably does not matter, but some hosts like to enforce this. It may have it's origin from pagan/ earthy movement fads of the late 80s to late 90s and maybe even before then. Or maybe it just sounds cool.
Fourth, the owner of the weed always has the right to take first hit. If he/she does not wish to take first hit, this honor can be passed to whoever he or she wants. Of course, the owner can declare the joint a roach and reclaim the remainder at any point for a pipe hit for later.
Fifth, AND most important is EVERYONE including the the owner of the pipe and weed is responsible for safety. They keep their mouth shut about drug use around pigs, the stupid, the loud mouthed, the eternally clueless, children, and the unsympathetic. They take measures to hide paraphernalia, stashes, and odd smells from these people and never do this in the open. They clean up any evidence that may be left around and gently remind their brothers and sisters if they are being careless. They read Security Culture and read Legal Advice and avoid smoking regularly with anyone who does not appear respect these things. They choose good times and secure places to smoke, and use common sense. They never do this around children, while working, or while driving. Yeah, maybe we beat dead horses. But the thousands POWs in cages from CorpGov's fascist drug war will agree with us that no amount of safety talk is too much.