DIY Glass Bong, Part 4: How To Smoke With Your New Bong

smoke from a bog with Old Hippie

How To Smoke Weed From A Pipe

  1. First, exhale before putting your mouth on the pipe. This makes room in your lungs, and insures you won’t blow out through the pipe by accident, which has been a source of embarrassment for new smokers for many decades.
  2. Put the flame over the weed in the bowl, and inhale. This sucks the flame down towards the weed, lighting it. Keep inhaling until you feel like your lungs are starting to fill up (not until they’re totally full)
  3. If you’re using a bong, keep inhaling while you lift the bowl out of the downstem. This lets air in and smoke out, and is called clearing the bong. If you’re smoking a different kind of pipe that’s made for weed, there’s probably a hole or “carb” on the side that you’ve been covering up all this time; just lifting your finger off will clear this kind of pipe.
  4. Now here’s a real Old Hippie trick: take the pipe out of your mouth, and make a sudden “gasp” intake of fresh air, deliberately expanding your chest (preferably while sitting or standing up straight). This forces the smoke deep into your lungs, and insures that you won’t swallow the smoke by mistake. This trick will get you much higher (and works with any style of smoking or vaping).
  5. Hold your smoke in for five…full…seconds. Count them. (Vapor can be held for 10 seconds).
  6. Now exhale. And probably cough.

Now you can smoke with me, using the bong we just made together:

I hope you enjoyed that video, because there’s quite a story behind it. My son helped me shoot it, and he can verify that, after maybe 45 minutes of futzing around by the sink taking the other video (the one you saw in Part 3), setting up the tripod for this one, running through to make sure he could see all the action, and so on, I finally went to my desk to pick up the bowl for the live smoking shot, and that’s when the “420 Notifier” app on my Android phone went off.

That’s right…it was exactly 4:20!

But wait, there’s more.

After we finished with the video, I put all the stuff away as fast as I could, because I knew I took a big hit. It’s a good thing I did, because about 10 minutes later, I was on a rocket to the moon, Alice!

Not only, in 45 years, have I never before been that high from smoking, but this was from just one hit! (Though I was actually around a [3] when I started, from one of my Canna Caps). Anyway, at the peak I was experiencing time dilation of well over 10:1 and hit [13] briefly (I only spent about 5 minutes over [11], but it felt like an hour).

After I was able to stand up again, I spent about half an hour (which felt like well over 3 hours) trudging slowly in a path around the house listening to 60s music on my earphones until I felt better. I spent at least 2 or 3 actual hours over [8], and I was very high until I finally went to sleep almost 10 hours from when I started.

…and half the bowl was still untouched!

Please be careful with bongs, folks…the water cools the smoke so well, you can take in way more smoke than you normally do. They’re like superchargers in a car engine, at least in that way.

Not recommended for saplings!

How To Clean A Bong

I forgot all about this, with all my edibles and vaping and whatnot. But smoking is dirty.

I mean that literally. Until I made these bongs, I had totally forgotten how smoking leaves resin residue on everything, especially your equipment, so that you have to clean it every time you use it, or it will start developing smells of its own. You know, like ashtrays? Yuk!

If passing bongs around when you’re high causes a certain amount of breakage, I suspect that cleaning them causes even more, because you’re bringing your glass bong close to a very hard sink. I’ve developed the habit of cleaning it right after I use it, which means I have about 10 minutes before I’m too high to clean it safely 🙂

Clean it when you’re not high, because otherwise you’re likely to have an expensive accident. Anyway, here’s how I do it:

  1. Take the bowl and downstem out, and immediately put the downstem between the faucet body and the back of the sink, where it can’t roll away and break.
  2. Wash everything off with hot water.
  3. Pour some isopropyl alcohol into the bong and swish it around, then recycle by pouring it from there into the bowl and downstem, and shake those up with your fingers over the ends (don’t let go!).
  4. (Optional) Blast all the pieces with compressed air (if your sink happens to be near your garage like mine is).
  5. You can dry everything off if you’re that kind of person, but it’s not really necessary. But don’t reassemble the bowl and downstem unless they are dry, because the ground glass-on-glass joints can stick if they get wet.
  6. If you’ve gone awhile without cleaning and your glass is dirty, you can add some coarse/kosher salt to the ISO in step 3 and let it soak for awhile, then do some extra shaking. The salt helps cut through the resin.

Isn’t Smoking Marijuana Bad For You?

As I’ve mentioned many times (including in Part One of this construction series), smoking is generally worse for your health than vaporizing, tinctures, or edibles. And you can imagine how much crap it leaves on your lungs. So why should a medical cannabis patient even bother with a bong?

  • Smoking cannabis gives you instant access to all the cannabinoids in the plant. It actually feels different. I’m not going to judge if it’s better for everyone, but it might be better for your particular condition…maybe not all the time, but perhaps sometimes.
  • If you’ve got to smoke, a bong is probably the least harmful way. It will at least take some of the nasty stuff out of the smoke and help your throat and lungs by cooling it. If you don’t believe me, sniff some used bong water!
  • Sometimes it’s just fun to take one hit and go straight up to [8]!
  • With the right silicone hose and adapter, you can hook your bong up to your vaporizer, and get water-cooled vapor hits. That’s the most gentle way to inhale that I can think of.

I just wouldn’t make a habit of smoking regularly.

For Those Who Read To The End

Bonus: here are some recent homemade liquor bottle bongs from the subreddit /r/StonerEngineering:

Part 1: Make Your Own Glass Bong
Part 2: How To Choose Your Bottle
Part 3: The Magic. And how to make it happen.
Part 4: How to smoke from your bong! (this article)

Old Hippie is a father of two boys and thankfully living in California where all this kind of thing is legal. He started smoking marijuana in 1967 in high school, experimented with mind-expanding drugs of all kinds, and then straightened out 15 or so years later to become an airplane pilot. After being diagnosed with depression in 2000, he lost his job and most of the following decade to prescription medications (such as antidepressants) which sapped his energy and will. Finally, a chance conversation with a friend led to a doctor’s recommendation for medical marijuana (MMJ). This changed his entire life, health, and outlook for the better. is his continuing story. It’s also his way to provide experienced advice on using medical marijuana effectively and responsibly, as well as advocacy, activism, and support for others. Old Hippie teaches about safe use of cannabis edibles, Canna Caps, vaporizers, dosing, and even microdosing.


Hey Mr Old Hippie, i love your website and read pretty much anything you put on Reddit. I just had a question about deep inhaling. I was smoking reggie not to long ago, and it usually takes me two bowls to get to a respectable high on it. I read on the internet that inhaling deeper made the high a lot stronger, so i inhaled deeper during my usual sesh. After about a bowl and a half, i decided i was vibrating a little to hard. I ended up sitting in my shower for an hour and half, trying to climb down off of whatever high I was on. I read somewhere later on that more carcinogens are pushed into the lungs with deeper inhales, and that you were essentially poisoning yourself by this deep inhalation method. Has it never made you feel sick, to really push those hits deep down inside? I didn’t really feel high, just kind of sick and lost at the same time. I’m afraid to try less hits with the deeper inhales because i don’t want to get sick again.

Well…whatever is in the smoke will be pushed deep into your lungs by this method, yes. So, more THC, more CBD, but also more tar or nasty stuff too. In your case, you got way too high and found out you didn’t like it, so the obvious conclusion is…don’t do it! I’ve never felt sick from deep inhaling, but I have felt pretty bad from being too high.

But smoking always gets bad stuff into your lungs, so if you smoke regularly and are concerned about your health (as it sounds like you are), you might want to look into vaping or edibles for the long term…especially because with lower-quality weed, the more you smoke, the more crap you’re putting into your lungs. Nugs and hugs!

Hey thanks for the reply man. I was worried about my health. I want to deep inhale so when i do get KB, i can make it last longer. (Its expensive where i am!) I decided to get a real nice vaporizer (Arizer Q). Ill try a deep inhale with that, and i hope ill be fine hah.

Arizers are great, you should see a big difference in coughing. But getting too high is still not as much fun as some people think it is. Anyway, they have adapters for whip vaporizers that you can plug right into a bong like this, so you can eventually use the bong to filter your vapor hits. Good luck and keep safe!

Whats up old hippie i ve got lost of old hippies in my family ive learned so much from them its awesome cause i no more than most my friends but yes deep inhaling is way better expesically outta a bong it gets you super high and i love it i ve been going at this for awhile but im fine as can be well i think at least well imma go to my room and clam bake have fun!

Hey there Old Hippie, I just wanted to say these articles were great! They were exactly what I was looking for. I was getting pretty tired of so many sites saying “Ok here’s what you need; a bottle, an emergency hammer, duct tape, 2 bic pens and some tinfoil.”
Thanks for the well articulated instructions!

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