Stoners are very creative people by nature. Never tell a stoner there’s a barrier between them and their weed. Give them enough time and they’ll figure out how to smoke from almost any household object. Water bottles are easy to find. Every house has at least one in the recycling. Water bottles are the easiest things to transform into impromptu bongs when the need arises.
Whether you’re out of papers or you’re just looking for a fun little project, you can turn a water bottle into a bong in just a few short minutes.
Why a bong is better than a pipe
A bong is better than a pipe when you’re smoking a weed that’s particularly harsh. Strains like Sour Diesel pack a hard punch. If you’re a fan of something mellower with a more mild flavor, smoking one of these strains from a pipe or a paper isn’t going to work out well for you. Filtering it through the water of a bong can make it easier to take a substantial hit without hacking and gagging.
Even if you like the taste of your weed and you don’t find it too harsh, you might appreciate the cooler hit you get from a bong. The water makes the hit gentle and refreshing, and it filters some of the charred flavors away. It’s just a little more pleasant than smoking from a bowl, especially when it’s hot outside and you don’t necessarily want to warm yourself up from the inside.
A little warning about smoking out of plastic
Heat and plastic work together to generate fumes, and you’ll want to keep this in mind before you combine the two. If your plastic gets hot (and it likely will), you might be inhaling some of these fumes. That’s why high-quality bongs and hand pipes are made of glass. Glass doesn’t have the potential to release the same fumes. It’s heat-safe, and it won’t melt if you leave the lighter too close for too long.
You need to be very mindful when you’re smoking out of plastic. If you don’t feel safe or comfortable applying heat to something that can melt and inhaling the smoke, don’t make a bong out of a plastic bottle. Plastic bottle bongs are a temporary solution at best. Get yourself a decent glass bong if you intend to regularly smoke from a bong. It’s a one-time investment that will last you an eternity as long as you’re taking proper care of it.
Making the bong
You’ll need a standard-sized, single-serving water or soda bottle. If you’re using a water bottle, rinse it out. If you’re using a soda or juice bottle, make sure you clean it out thoroughly. You don’t want any sugary buildup on the inside of your bong. Wash it off and peel away the label so it doesn’t get in your way.
Making the downstem
The easiest way to make a downstem is by disassembling a pen or a marker. Carefully remove the end cap and take out the ink tube or ink sponge, taking care to rinse out any residue. Markers work better for DIY bongs because of their large diameter. The diameter of your marker will ultimately be the diameter of your bowl. Choose something large.
The easiest way to prep a pen or marker for a downstem would be to use something like hedge clippers to cut both ends off. You can create a downstem to your desired size this way. Just be very careful when you’re cutting down the plastic tube.
Some kinds of plastic, particularly hard clear acrylic plastic, may splinter if you attempt to cut it this way. Choosing a softer and more pliable opaque plastic pen or marker will make it easier to cut evenly without sending little shards of sharp plastic everywhere.
If you have a downstem and bowl from a broken bong, use that. It will save you a ton of time and effort.
Making the bowl
If you need to make a bowl, the best material to use is aluminum foil. Take a piece of foil and fold it over itself several times to thicken it up. Use your thumb to fold the foil into the shape of a little bowl. Use something small and sharp, like a toothpick, to poke a few tiny holes in the bottom of the bowl. Be careful when you’re poking these holes. If they’re too big, your weed will fall right through the bottom.
Gently stick the aluminum bowl into the end of your marker tube. Rolling the edges around the outer perimeter of the marker tube will help to keep the bowl from sliding all the way in.
Cutting the carb and downstem holes
You’re not going to be able to pull your downstem out like you would with a normal bong. You’re going to use brute force to jam your downstem in. Once it’s there, it’s there. To make up for the lack of airflow, you’re going to need to cut a carb into your water bottle bong.
You’re going to measure and cut spaces for both. The best place to start is just below the exact middle of the bottle. You want your downstem to be on the front, and your carb to be on the side. Choose a spot that your thumb will comfortably cover when you’re holding the water bottle, and make a mark with a permanent marker. Make a mark on the front and enter for your downstem.
The easiest way to cut your holes is with an Exacto knife or a scalpel-style knife. For the downstem, puncture an X over the dot. You want the diameter of this “X” to be slightly smaller than your marker tube to help you achieve a snug fit. Push the downstem in at a downward angle, with the bottom of the stem reaching near the bottom of the bottle on the opposite side.
For the carb, poke the mark with your blade and slowly rotate it in a circle to completely remove the piece of the plastic bottle.
Setting up your water bottle bong
Pour some water into your water bottle bong. You only need enough to cover the bottom of the downstem. Make sure you don’t overfill the bottle. If you tilt it like you’re going to use it and the water can leak out the carb hole or the area around the downstem, you’ve used too much water.
Grind your weed finely and pack your aluminum foil bowl while the downstem is still inserted into the bottle. If you pack the bowl first and try to jam the downstem into the bottle, it’s likely you’ll lose some weed to your carpet. Packing it once it’s in place will allow you to get the right fill. Be careful not to push down too hard when packing the boil. You don’t want to tear the foil.
Smoking from your water bottle bong
Cover the carb with your thumb and light the bowl, inhaling through the mouth of the bottle to draw up a hit. When the bottle fills with smoke, release your thumb from the carb and clear the bottle by inhaling. A water bottle bong holds a smaller amount of smoke than a full-sized tabletop bong. You’re not going to get a huge rip on your first try. Simply take more small hits to make up the difference.
What to do after you’ve used your water bottle bong
Water bottle bongs can’t easily be cleaned. They aren’t very durable, and they don’t hold up to heat well. You can get about a days’ use out of a water bottle bong before it has to be thrown away. The best solution is to invest in a reliable glass bong that you can clean and continually reuse. Even if you don’t use a bong every day, you’ll appreciate having one when you need it.
If you’re here because your glass bong broke, you’re probably hesitant to buy another one. Nothing is worse than watching the bong you love to take a tumble and shatter into a dozen pieces. If you’re clumsy, get a silicone bong. Bongs made of food-safe silicone are easy to clean, long-lasting, and completely goof-proof. If you drop it, the worst that can happen is a wet spot on the floor and a lost bowl of weed.
Water bottle bongs are a great temporary solution. Emphasis on temporary. You shouldn’t be using one for more than a day. If you can’t make a run to get weed or smoking supplies, Emjay can bring them to you. We deliver a wide selection of flower, as well as any smoking supplies you may need. If you’re in a pinch, we have glass pipes and papers. We’ll be happy to bring you what you need to smoke safely without the risk of burning plastic. Weed should be a fun time. Let Emjay make it simple.