The Ultimate Guide to Pipes for Beginners
Pipes were among the first smoking tools to be invented, and today they’re still one of the most widely used products for smoking. Their popularity and ease of use make them a timeless, useful, and convenient tool to have in your arsenal of smoking paraphernalia. As smoking techniques have grown, so has the variety of pipe types and design.
Today, even seasoned smokers may not recognize some of the radical pipe designs that sit on market shelves. So, it’s really no surprise when a beginner gets confused with the difference between a one-hitter and an intricate bubbler. Lucky for you, we’ve decided to bring together this resource-filled piece on pipes for beginners. Whether you want to buy your first pipe or upgrade your existing one, you want to be armed with the right information on all things pipes. And that is precisely what this article sets out to do. So, sit back, relax, and kiss your ignorance goodbye!
Pipes for beginners: What to Consider
At the fundamental level, you have to consider two things before choosing your pipe. One is the material which the pipe is made of, and second, the size of your pipe. Since there are a lot of pipe varieties, the material and size can be a good way of differentiating these models. Once you get a good grasp of these two parameters, you’ll get a much better understanding of the other nuances.
The majority of pipes today are made of either glass or silicone bodies. But it’s not uncommon to see pipes made of metal, wood, ceramic, stone/crystal, etc. These materials all come with specific advantages and downsides that affect your smoking. But for the most part, they are nuances that you’ll notice only after getting the basics right. As a general rule, metal pipes work well. And other varieties of materials may come for aesthetic effect or better heat retention. You can narrow down on a choice once you try each type at least a few times.
Size of the pipe
The size of pipes has been changing even more in the modern context. Bubblers or steamrollers can come in way bigger and wider designs. These designs occupy more space on your table or palms, but they may come with additional features. Other more portable pipes come with fewer capabilities but a size that’s perfect for portability. The Original Monkey Pipe, for example, is a type that is portable, simple, and stylishly small.
Spoon Pipes and Hand Pipes
These types of pipes are the more common and simple varieties of pipe design. The spoon pipe comes with bulbous heads and may be made of a variety of materials. The hand pipes can be immediately recognized thanks to their more traditional look and design (The Sherlock, Wizard, etc.). Both these types come with a bowl (carp), airflow hole, and mouthpiece. These standard designs are easy to maintain and definitely among the most widely used designs. You don’t have to worry about regular cleaning and intricate design features. They’re the plug-and-play versions of the smoking world. You need very little skill and expertise to operate a hand/spoon pipe. And for a beginner, it can be a good way to try the habit before moving on to more detailed pipes. Even as a seasoned smoker, there’s nothing classier than a polished Sherlock Pipe you can whip out when you want that old-school vibe.
Steamrollers usually have a much bigger and imposing design, at least compared to regular spoon pipes. They usually come as a straight tube, which carries a bowl on the top and a carp in the front. The hits are stronger and heavier. So, it may not be the best choice for a beginner. But if you’ve drummed up some experience and want something closer to a bong hit, it’s an ideal choice.
As far as dry table-top pipes go, the steamroller is definitely the most preferred product. It’s surely the better option if you want a more enhanced pipe, but you don’t want to buy a bubbler. They offer you that heavier dry bong hit while still being compact enough as a pipe. Also, they’re a refreshing change from the old-school bulbous pipes we usually see.
Dry pipes are pretty simple devices, but bubbler takes you to the world of pipes with water chambers. Bubblers, themselves, come in a variety of looks and designs. While hammer bubblers can use the mouthpiece as a leg to stand on, stand-up bubblers can look like smaller versions of regular bongs. Bubblers can use water to add a filtration element to your smoke. This means cleaner, thicker, smoother, and cooler smoke. They’re not very compact and portable. But they’re the best thing between a regular pipe and a fancy bong.
Novelty pipes can include any fancy or non-traditional designs that don’t really come under the earlier categories. They have more to do with design and appearance than the utility. So, you can have pipes that resemble animals, machines, tools, etc. Although there isn’t much utility added, they can be great means of creative expression for the maker. Hand pipes work on very simple and straightforward principles. As long as there’s a bowl to light things up and a mouthpiece to inhale, the pipe is ready. This means the glassblower has an incredibly wide range of design options available. Once the smoking mechanism works, the appearance of a pipe is only limited to the glassblower’s artistic imagination. These novelty pipes can be great additions to your collection of pipes and bongs at home.
Once you understand these categories of pipes, you’ll be able to choose from any variety and design. For all the changes you see in design and appearance, all pipes come under one of these categories. Each type brings something new or unique to the smoking lifestyle. And you can slowly make your way towards each product as you get into it more and more. At Destination Smoke we stock an endless supply of unique hand pipes, check them out!