Buying my first bong from a kid from my town, need help!

Discussion in 'Bongs, Dab Rigs, Bubblers, Water Pipes' started by drush123, Jan 4, 2013.

  1. #1 drush123, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2013
    Okay so I decided that i want to buy a bong. I do not want to buy one online because i cant have it shipped to my house because my parents would open it. I know a kid selling a 2 foot bong with an ice catcher for $50. I havnt seen it yet, so no word on the quality of the glass but he says it is the thickest glass bong he has ever seen and he bought it for $180. The only problem is that he does not have a slide or a bowl for it. For this reason i may be able to get him down to $40 for it. I am not very familiar with the anatomy of the bong and I dont want to go into my local headshop and buy the wrong thing. I have two questions.. One is (obviously depending on the quality) is this a steal? is it worth it if i have to also buy a bowl and stem and how much will that cost me for both roughly? My other question is what exactly do i need to know about this bong to be able to buy the right size stem/bowl. I want to buy it before hand and try out the bong and i know there are diff kinds of stems and different sizes and i dont know what they mean... What do i need to ask the seller to ensure I buy the right items at my local headshop?

    Thanks for the help everyone
  2. #2 Keith McKief, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2013
    You have to see the bong before justifying a $50 bong. The thing is, that's not a bad price for a good bong, but we don't know if said bong is that good yet. It could be just a $30 bong.
    Here are the things to look out for:
    1. Is it glass? Or Acrylic?
    Generally, you want a glass bong.​
    2. The thickness of the glass.
    Does the bong seem cheap and thin and easy to break?​
    3. Is it glass-on-glass or a rubber seal bong?
    Is the downstem and bowl connection 100% glass? Or is it a slide bowl that connects to a downstem being held to the bong with a rubber ring?​
    4. The height of the bong
    You already said it's two-feet, which is not a bad size at all​
    5. Special features of the bong
    Does it have a percolator? Ashcatcher? Icecatcher? Diffuser? Etc.​

    Generally speaking, $50 for a two-foot, glass-on-glass bong with an ice-catcher is not a bad price at all.
  3. $40 is a decent price for a two foot glass bong. You will need to know what size downstem to get for it, usually it's either 14mm or 18mm. Same for the bowl going in the stem, 14 or 18. I bought a replacement downstem from my lhs for $15, and you can find a bowl for about the same. Ask the guy if he knows what size. If not, post a picture when/if you buy and we can probably tell.
  4. This is very helpful thank you! It is glass not Acrylic and he said that the glass is a 1/4 inch thick... Don't know how true that is because I havnt seen it before and i dont know the kid personally.. Couple more questions..

    do I have to measure it to find out if they are 14 or 18mm if he doesnt know?

    Is the stem always the same size as the bowl? Ex if the stem is 14 mm is the bowl 14 as well?

    And does the type of bowl/downstem matter if it is a glass on glass or with the rubber grommet? Like is there a diff type of stem/bowl for a glass
    On glass and vice versa

  5. #5 spakky, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2013
    why would you get a two foot bong, when you don't want your parents to find out? it'll be hard as fuck to hide that thing and clean it without your parents noticing. i'd honestly saw pass it up, and find a bubbler or a smaller tube at least. plus i'm not a fan of huge ass tubes like that so i wouldn't even consider it

    edit - to answer your questions haha
    generally if your pinky can fit into the slide hole, it's 18mm, if it can't it's 14mm.

    as for the stem, the bong itself is usually bigger than the bowl size. like 18mm hole on the bong, and a 18mm downstem to fit in it, with a 14mm hole for the slide. that's what people mean by 18-18 or 18-14. 18 being the downstem size, and the second number the slide size

    if it's a rubber grommet, you will probably have to get one of those cheap "slider bowls". if it's glass on glass, it'll be like pretty much every bong out nowadays..
  6. #6 drush123, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2013
    Because I'm in college and I'm on winter break for another 3 weeks so I would only have to hide it until I head back to school. I could order one online when I get back to school but I don't want to wait.. I have already decided I don't want one online I just need some help buying the right bowl/downstem
  7. Yeah, you're probably gonna have to measure if you're not experienced enough with them to tell by looking.

    No, my current bong uses a 14mm bowl -> 18mm stem. So not always.

    Yes. If it uses a rubber stopper, you will just need what is basically a bowl/downstem combo but sizing can be difficult. Glass on glass uses a glass bowl, glass downstem, and the bong itself, all separate parts.
  8. #8 Keith McKief, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2013
    In a glass-on-glass bong, the downstem is a straight glass tube that goes into a big hole in the bong. Then, a bowl (just a bowl) is inserted into the glass downstem. In a rubber grommet bong, it is a straight downstem that is inserted into the bong (usually glued or tightly fitted) with a rubber seal, and a slide bowl which is a bowl/downstem is inserted into the fixed downstem and is only sealed by a rubber ring on the slide bowl. Here are a few pictures:

    Rubber Grommet downstem and slide


    These are glass-on-glass downstems


    And this is an example of a glass-on-glass bowl

  9. And thank you for the answers! That is very helpful I think I should be able to determine what I need when I go take a look at it... The only other concern I have is determining the quality of it... Is there any way by looking at it besides the thickness of the glass to tell if it's a shitty bong or a nice one or is that the only way really?
  10. Also to clarify....if I'm reading this correctly With a rubber grommet piece the bowl and downstem is one piece and if it is glass on glass the bowl is separate from the downstem?
  11. a trained eye can spot shitty welds, thinning glass spots, and all around poor quality. all i can say is look at some high quality glass....

    also the grommet on grommet slides usually have a long stem, but there is also a downstem that that goes inside. its just a weird design. most of the times you wont see that, its usually glass on glass, even shitty Chinese sweat factory pieces.

  12. Normally, most cheaper bongs hit the same, with only tiny unnoticeable drag differences in them. Now unless the bong you're buying is like a Toro, or a Zob, or a Roor, or a Illadelph, or a Sheldon Black, etc. there isn't going to be a surefire off the bat way of telling it'll be a good bong.

    But a bong is a bong is a bong is a bong and you can't go wrong until you toss it like a thong.
  13. Exactly!
  14. And yes, in a way, but the main difference is that it's a fixed downstem, meaning that there is a glass downstem that is fixed to the bong, while a removeable downstem/bowl is also slid inside of the fixed downstem.

    Another way to explain this is that there is only one removeable part, and that is the slide bowl, which slides out of a fixed downstem.

    In this picture, the stem on the left is the fixed downstem, and the stem on the right is the slide (removeable downstem/bowl) The slide on the right slides in and out of the stem on the left which is fixed to the bong.


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