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Comprehensive Guide to Smoking Using Various Paraphernalia

Discussion in 'Apprentice Marijuana Consumption' started by astrocheese, Nov 20, 2009.

  1. #1 astrocheese, Nov 20, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2010
    Alright hey guys. When I woke up this morning, I naturally thought about GC, and it dawned on me how confusing smoking can be for new tokers. I thought, "Hey, there should be a guide that explains the basics of any sort of smoking device/paraphernalia, so no one gets confused there first few times." I did a quick search, and there's no one-stop-shop for this kind of guide, only a bunch of scattered threads. So here we go. (Feel free to lock this mods if I was mistaken)

    Being friends with a bunch of non-stoners means I'm constantly smoking people up for their first few times. Over time, I've been able to see what the confusing parts of smoking are for them, and at times it's funny to watch them fumble around with a spoon or singe their eyebrows. Let's start with the basics, a joint.

    Joint/Blunt Smoking

    Joint/blunt smoking is relatively easy, and a common method for the loss of stoner-virginity. There's little more to it than holding it up to your lips and inhaling, but it's possible to make some mistakes if you're not familiar with smoking cigarettes or cigars.

    1. Don't slobber. Some people are wet lipped smokers, but if you've never smoked before you might not be aware of whether or not you are. Be careful, and try not to get your spit all over the joint/blunt, as it's fairly unpleasant to have a skin passed to you, only to see the tip looking like a wet noodle.
    2. Don't be one of those "anxious ashers." A chain-smoking friend of mine is notorious for looking like the nervous smoker. She takes quick drags off the cig and is constantly ashing (tapping the cig to dispose of ashes). While the quick drag isn't applicable to smoking weed, try to ash minimally. More often than not, the ashing process will result in the dislodging of some green, and can often lead to a less even burn.
    3. If it's your first few times smoking from a joint or a blunt, don't try the shotgun. Maybe your friend is a seasoned toker and really wants to get it going, but you could easily get hurt. (Shotgun, as defined elsewhere in this forum, is the process by which one blows smoke backwards through the joint into someone else's mouth. Risky)
    4. Don't offer to roll the joint/blunt. If you want to be courteous, offer to buy a pack of rolling papers or buy the man/woman some blunts, but if it's your first few times I would leave the rolling to a seasoned expert. There is a time and place to learn how to roll, and I suggest practicing at home so you can impress your stoner friends later
    5. Don't bogart. This means don't hog it for yourself. If your stoner friend is trying to pop your weed cherry and get you high for the first time, he/she might offer to let you smoke most of the joint so as to break down your THC barrier. However, don't assume they will, and follow the rules of Puff -> Pass

    1. As always, hold the hit in. From afar, it's very difficult to tell the difference between someone smoking a handrolled cigarette and a handrolled joint. However, one of the easy differences is the amount inhaled and how long the smoke is held in the lungs. A smoker will inhale briefly, and the smoke is exhaled nearly instantly. If you want to get high, you need to take deeper hits, and hold the hits in longer.
    2. Let your friend decide when the roach is tossable. He probably rolled it, and he probably knows where the weed ends. He might be the type that smokes until his lips are on fire, or he could be okay with putting it out a little early, but let him make the call.

    Moving on to...
    Handpipe Smoking

    When I smoke up new tokers, I quickly introduce them to one of my pipes. I tend to stay away from joints and blunts because of inefficiency, but they are definitely easier to start with. I know it can be tough to describe what to do to someone who has never put anything but air in their lungs before, so I'll do my best to make up for what your friend couldn't tell you once he was already blazed.

    1. Find the carb. Most pipes will have these, it is a hole located somewhere on the portion of the pipe that will be held in your hand (usually the bowl). If you can't find the carb, ask your friend. The carb is necessary to get a full hit and to clear the chamber afterwards. This will be explained later


    2. Bring the pipe up to your lips, and, with a finger (usually thumb, or index finger if you hold it like I do) over the carb, and position the lighter about an inch above the bowl, maybe a little lower if it's a small lighter.


    3. Light the lighter, and begin inhaling. The flame will be drawn down towards the bowl naturally, but you may have to adjust the distance if you positioned it too high. Your weed should light and smoke will begin to fill the pipe and your lungs.
    4. NOW TAKE THE LIGHTER AWAY! Continue inhaling, but remove the lighter after a second or two. Weed does not take much to ignite, and if it is a well-packed bowl the weed will burn by itself without having to be constantly lit. If you hold the lighter there any longer, you will "torch" the bud. This means you'll burn unnecessary amounts of bud that could've been used later in the smoking session.
    5. As your lungs begin to fill up, or if the weed fails to stay lit and you feel like you have a sufficient hit, take your finger off the carb and take one last big inhale. This will clear the chamber of any lingering smoke, finishing off your hit.
    6. Hold for anywhere from 3 to 5 seconds, depending on personal preference, then exhale and watch the magic that is fluid dynamics (AKA look at the smoke and be amazed by it. It'll be pretty amazing once you get high, I promise)

    1. Don't torch the weed! You want weed to last, so don't light any more than you have to. A common procedure is called "cornering the bowl," which requires some practice. The goal is to just barely introduce the tip of the lighter to a corner of the bowl by moving it slowly across. This will just light what is necessary, and the rest will burn until you finish your hit.
    2. Don't spill the weed! AHHHH! While this may seem to be common sense, don't test gravity. Keep the bowl upright at all times, and try not to inadvertently tip it over. That's not a good impression to leave.
    3. Don't double hit. I was sitting with a friend of mine, trying to determine what constitutes as a hit, and we decided it means one lungful of smoke. If the weed goes out and you still can take more, relight it. But if it's still lit and you have to exhale, it's not courteous to continue to inhale afterwards. Pass it on bro
    4. Don't burn yourself. Another common sense thing, but often difficult. If you're smoking with a tiny spoon, you may find yourself dangerously close to the lighter, which could spell out half an eyebrow missing. Or, if you don't watch the lighter, you could easily burn your thumb. I, along with most other tokers, have had the pleasure of doing both.

    1. Pass quickly when you hit the cherry. Some people like to put out the weed with the back end of a lighter every time it's passed in order to conserve bud, but my circle of friends view the cherry as a testament to the packing quality of the bowl. When we hit the cherry (the part of the packed bowl the continues to burn even after inhaling has finished), we like to see how far around the smoking circle we can get it before it burns out. An essential part of this is passing speed. Make sure to pass it as soon as you finish inhaling, to conserve the cherry.
    2. Leave maintenance to the bowl-packer and/or pipe owner. Everyone has their own tics when it comes to maintaining a bowl, and you don't want to interfere with that, especially if it's your first few times smoking. Some people like to tap the ash out in order to get better access to multiple layers of green after a few hits. Some people aren't comfortable with that. Learn by watching, and eventually you can empty a bowl like the pros.
    3. Take a big hit. Moreso than a joint, where it can be disrespectful if you spent 30 seconds inhaling, pipe smoking is all about the hit. Take the biggest, deepest hit you can, and fill up about 80-90% of your lung capacity before letting off the carb and clearing the chamber. Then hold it in for a few seconds, let that THC get in you, and let out a dragon puff. That being said, don't push your health, either. If you start to feel a tickle in your chest, think about ending the hit early. A little coughing here and there is good, but a coughing fit can really ruin a smoking session. After a while, you'll learn your limits.

    Now we talk about...

    Bubblers and bongs (water pipes) are another step up from your joint, moving past pipes. These wondrous devices bubble the smoke up through water to remove various impurities as well as cool the smoke, making it easier to inhale. Not much is different about the procedure from smoking from a bubbler/bong than that of a pipe, but there are a few topics to cover.

    1. The carb is often replaced by a removable bowl, called a slider or simple a bowl. Some bongs or bubblers do have a carb somewhere at the base, but quite often you won't find one. Instead, the bowl can be taken out, which does the same thing as a carb just with a different motion. It also allows for a few more errors to be made...



    2. Milk the bong/bubbler. This means fill up the length of the bong with as much smoke as possible as you inhale about 75% of your lungs' capacity. Once you hit that level, remove the bowl or let off the carb and clear the milk for a delicious hit
    3. Move your face away from the mouth of the bong/bubbler to exhale. This will prevent the spill of bong water, a scary topic for tokers everywhere.

    1. Don't spill the bowl when you take it out! This is more movement of the bowl than you get with a pipe, but don't let it get out of control. You don't need to whip the bowl out of place to clear the milk, just remove it enough to let clean air get in.
    2. Don't exhale through the bong. This will blow water out of every crevice, with the closest one being the bowl. This will drench your weed in icky icky water, and no one wants that.

    1. Keep the bong/bubbler upright at all times. This will prevent the chance of some bong water escaping through the bowl.
    2. See if you can hold the hit longer than you would with a joint or pipe. The water filtration and cooling process is intended to make the smoke more enjoyable for you, so try and take advantage of that by taking deeper, fuller hits. You should notice a better high.

    And finally...

    Vaporizers are considered by many to be a gift from god. Don't expect to encounter one early in your toking career, as they are pretty expensive, but you might have that rich friend who is a secret pothead that wants to introduce you to his Volcano vape. Personally, I'm too cheap to shell out the dough for my own vape, so I've only used one a few times, one of which was homemade. I'm also too lazy to make my own, so I'll just stick with my glass. Vapes are much healthier than other forms of smoking, as it avoids the carcinogens and other nasty stuff that are released from the bud when it is burnt. Instead, the weed in a vaporizer is heated to the point that it begins to turn into a vapor of nearly pure THC. The procedure of vaping is much different from hitting a bong or a pipe, and even vaping varies between different vapes (whether they are storebought or homemade). I'm going to outline the basics of your general vaporizer.

    1. Let your friend get it set up. Setting up a vape can be a daunting task if you have no idea what you're doing. Let the owner do the work for now. The weed is put in a small compartment below the bag, which will fill up when the weed is heated enough to "vaporize." This will happen after the temperature on the vape is turned up.
    2. The vaporizer will now heat up the weed, so now you wait.
    After the bag fills with vapor, the bag is removed, and inhaled.
    4. Hold in the hit, and exhale.
    5. Enjoy your pure high.

    Like I said, the procedure varies from vape to vape. Some vaporizers require that you hold the herb over some sort of heating element, and you remove it when you want to take a hit. Some have it constantly vaporizing, with it up to you to decide when to take a hit. The owner of the vape should know how to operate it, so you should be comfortable to ask him for guidance if you get stuck somewhere. The do's and don'ts list is shorter for this, as well.

    1. Drink water afterwards. First time vapers can find that the vapor can dry out their moth and lungs. Obviously, don't pour water into your lungs, but drinking water should help alleviate that issue.
    2. Be careful around the vape. It is an expensive piece of equipment, and can get quite hot once the inside reaches 400 degrees or so. You don't want to be surprised by the heat only to knock it off it's table, putting you in the hole a hundred bones or more.

    Next we get

    Hookahs are generally a social item. I know I keep one in my trunk just in case I get to a party and they want it broken out. It is usually used with "shisha," which is another word for the type of tobacco smoked out of it. The hookah works by means of heating the tobacco enough for it to start smoking without actually igniting the tobacco. The coal placed on top of the bowl (which is usually covered in foil), and over time the tobacco gives out smoke. Smoke is emitted from the tobacco when you inhale through one of the hoses, as it draws air down, heating up the coal which also heats up the bowl. The smoke is then channeled through the body of the hookah and down into the water bowl, which bubbles the smoke and cools/filters it. The end product is a nice tasting hit of filtered tobacco, with nearly neglible tar and nicotine content (if you buy nice shisha).

    1. Don't blow through the hose. Only inhale. If you exhale through the hose, it does the same thing as when you blow through a bong. Water comes out all the holes in the hookah...And it becomes a serious mess.
    2. Overuse your turn. A lot of using a hookah (also called "poking") is about social etiquette. If you just have one hose, don't bogart your turn. Keep the circle passing going.

    1. Offer to help pack the bowl. In my hookah circle, the virgin poker would always have to pack the bowl, which is a somewhat annoying process. Hookahs take a bit of assembly, so always offer a hand to be a courteous poker.
    2. Offer to clean the hookah. I know that I like to keep my hookah clean (but haven't been using it lately out of sheer laziness...It takes some work). The process involves hot water and salt, much like how you would clean a piece. If the owner of the hookah makes a mention to clean the hookah, offer to help. He or she will definitely appreciate the assistance.
    Now for some universal tips, regardless of how you're smoking.

    Universal Don'ts

    1. Don't be a bogart. Don't hog the weed, ESPECIALLY if it isn't yours. You want to try and build relationships, not end them due to your lack of courtesy. Share the love that is cannabis.
    2. Don't push yourself. After you're smoked a couple times, especially if it is your first encounter with smoking anything, you're probably just getting ready to finally get high. Don't push yourself though. Being high is very enjoyable, but for the first time you don't want to end up completely ripped, as you might end up scaring yourself. Let yourself get used to what being high is, then work on utilizing the weed to its fullest.
    3. Don't let it get out of control. Smoke the weed, don't let the weed smoke you. You dig?
    4. Don't get involved with the wrong crowd just to toke up. There are plenty of "normal" people that smoke weed. Don't try to get in with the burn-outs of your high school or college just because you think it'll help you get high. You could find yourself getting pushed to try other drugs, many of which will not be as pleasant as bud.
    5. Don't munch constantly. Every toker knows how the munchies are. It takes a lot to quell that hunger that builds up, but don't succumb to it. Sure, eat moderately. But don't be a fatass and eat a family size bag of doritos every night.

    Universal Do's

    1. Enjoy yourself. Weed is supposed to be a fun thing, a stress reliever. Maybe you just finished finals week of your freshman year of engineering at college. Light up and let your mind run free to celebrate. I've found that weed helps unlocks parts of my mind that I previously wouldn't have tapped into, allowing myself a freer range of thought. Find out what weed does for you, and take advantage of that. But keep it under control
    2. Make friends. Toking can be a social activity, and allows relationships to be built. I met my now-best friend when I started smoking, and I'm a happier person because of it. But don't let it be the focal point of all your relationships, or you could find yourself feeling empty.
    3. Learn from watching others toke. That way, you can write your own guide on some forums some day instructing "apprentice tokers" on the finer points of various smoking devices.
    4. Keep a safety kit for toking. Eyedrops, hand sanitizer, a small bottle of spray deodorant, and a pack of gum are great things to carry around for being the stealth toker that most people strive to be. Don't be afraid to ask for some of these things if you forgot yours, as your bud buds should be down for helping you out. But don't make a habit on relying on them for it
    And lastly...
    5. Happy toking!:smoke:

    Update #1: Bowl Packing
    1. Find a steady surface. If for whatever reason you're in a moving vehicle, wait until the car comes to a stop before you start placing the weed into the bowl. Too many times I've seen people spill bud everywhere.
    2. Break up the weed by hand. This step is optional. Some people have grinders that do a great job of turning a nug into a fine-ground consistency, but many don't have that luxury. If you're loading a bowl from a bunch of nugs in a plastic baggie, start breaking the nugs up before you take anything out of the bag. You can experiment to find the best way to do this. Some people don't like to get their fingers all over the weed, so they'll grip the nugs from outside the bag and kind of roll their fingers around. But be careful: don't rip the bag.
    3. Begin placing the bud into the bowl. I personally keep my ground up bud in a pill bottle, so all I have to do is pour it into the bowl. If it's in a bag, your best bet is to pick it up with your fingers instead of trying to pour it out of the bag. If the bowl has a large hole to smoke through (you'll have to have smoked before with it to know, you'd be getting ash in your mouth from time to time) a good idea, if you are not using a screen of any kind (glass, or regular), is to place a larger part of the nugget at the bottom, so as to block any ash from getting into your mouth. More on that later.
    4. After you've filled up the bowl, begin packing. Packing the bowl (pushing it down so as to compact it, to provide a more even burn) can be done using many implements. My two favorite are my knuckle on my pinky finger (the lower knuckle, not the upper one) or the butt end of your typical bic lighter. I don't recommend using your actual finger, because the oil on your hands could do more harm than help, and actually pick up pieces of the weed if you aren't careful. Your knuckle is much less oily, and the bottom of the lighter is even less so (obviously). Your goal is to pack an even bowl, compacted so as to prevent it from falling out, and also so that the bowl burns smoothly. If you did it correctly (especially if the weed is ground up well) your bowl should've lost some of it's original size when you packed it down. You're now free to add more to the top, and repeat the process from step 3, or just continue to the next step if you're satisfied.
    5. Rip it!

    Update #2: Gravity Bong
    A gravity bong is generally found at parties, due to the magnitude of setup required for this delicacy. The general makeup of a gravity bong is a bucket (not a small one, either) filled with water, with a device consisting of a cut-in-half 2 liter/other sort of bottle and some mesh wire floating in the water. I've never taken a picture of the gravity bongs I've built, so we will have to rely on my A+ MS Paint skills. I apologize in advance.


    The bowl is made out of a small bowl-shaped formation laid into the mouth of your 2 liter. However, unlike in my picture (I apologize again) you must also have a means of removing the bowl, as you will realize later. Like I said, this is just a general gravity bong, and a large one at that. They can be done with smaller bottles, smaller buckets, but I like everything big. Winky winky

    1. Pack the bowl. Place the weed into the mesh bowl, but do not yet put the mesh bowl into the mouth of the 2 liter.
    2. Submerge the 2 liter, mouth up, into the water. The depth depends on how big of a hit you want. If you want a huge hit, press it down most of the way. However, always leave the mouth of the bottle out of the water, and make sure your eyes aren't bigger than your stomach :D
    3. Insert the bowl into the mouth of the bottle. Don't let the bottle move too much, you could spill the weed!
    4. Get your lighter out, it's showtime. Light the light overtop the bowl as you would with any other bowl paraphernalia, and then begin bringing the bottle up out of the water, slowly. This will trigger a physics phenomenon known as....GRAVITY! Gravity keeps the water down in the bucket, thus drawing air through the mouth of the bottle to fill the void left by the water. This simulates a mouth breathing air in through a pipe...Thus drawing the flame down into the bowl. Once you notice that the bowl has lit, like it normally would, you can put the lighter down.
    5. Continue slowly removing the bottle from the water. The bowl should remain lit, as if you were inhaling. Continue until the bottle is either full of smoke and you can't pull it out anymore, or until you feel that you have a sufficient hit. It might take a few tries to decide what a sufficient gbong hit is.
    6. Hold the bottle steady, remove the bowl from the mouth, and place your mouth on the mouth of the bottle, then begin moving the bottle back deeper into the water while you inhale. This will push the smoke out of the bottle, into your mouth. You have to be constantly inhaling so that it doesn't come out of your mouth though.
    7. Hold that hit, and then let it out slowwwww! :smoke:

    1. Do not "wobble" the bottle. At any point in this lengthy process, wobbling the bottle could spill weed, or push out precious smoke. Keep your hand as steady as possible.
    2. Do not assume you can take a monstrous hit. While the actual capacity of your lungs would probably surprise you if you physically saw it, don't try for the whole bottle your first time. Give yourself a chance to find out what it feels like.
    3. Do not get the mouth of the bottle wet before you begin toking. Depending on your bowl, this could get on the weed, etc etc. Not good.
    4. Do not build a bowl that will rest against the plastic directly. Have some space. Without that air between the mesh and the plastic, you could begin melting the plastic, which would be bad news for your mouth.

    1. Enjoy yourself. More often than not, a gravity bong will be found at a large social gathering. I suggest using this high not to contemplate every cell of your skin, but rather to ease up and have fun with the people around you.
    2. As with everything I teach you to do, hold it in! The water does a decent, but not much of a job, of cooling the weed. However, you also can leave the smoke in there for a couple of seconds if you want, and allow it to cool off.

    Thanks for reading
    Cheese :rolleyes:
    • Winner Winner x 1
  2. wow. this could be a great little guide to new blades. +rep
  3. I demand a sticky!

    +rep brother, great post - I'm thinking about writing one of these specifically about Volcanos since I seem to be spending alot of time educating people about them....
  4. +rep, I smell a sticky. only suggestion is it could use pictures but there is no value lost w/o them :)
  5. A -delicious- post.

  6. + Rep

  7. Yup, a well-written guide for the new smokers around here. Would be good to have a mod/admin sticky this for you. Nicely written.
  8. yeaaaah goood post man, real helpful guide for the young blazers out there...
  9. Very nice guide!
    This shoudl really be a sticky, i know soem one who could really use ths...
  10. haha great guide i am starting to toke up now and its great
    this guide will help me out alot
  11. Thanks guys! I wasn't able to get pictures up when I first wrote this, but I'm currently in the process of taking some to upload with it. Stay tuned
  12. Alright pictures have been added. Feel free to add any more suggestions, I'm hoping to get it stickied at some point :D
  13. I say this post gets stickyed. Its a great post, and i think new smokers will find it very useful!
  14. ha! i think we all know someone who could use this...
  15. + rep sticky this! this is exactly what i have been looking for.:)
  16. Glad I was able to help. I'm thinking of doing a thread on various stoner etiquette, such as in head shops, or in a smoking circle, when approaching a deal, etc. There's a lot of stuff that can be hard to learn
  17. Good job
    bro this is gonna help alotta ppl out
  18. I agree with the consensus to sticky this thread...

    You have the same twisty pipe as me, also. I actually have never seen anyone else with one of these before now, lol.

  19. Hey dude....your bong looks like a penis

    Good guide though +rep

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