A Look at the Grav Labs Upline Collection
Glassblower Micah Evans - one of the creatives behind Grav Labs’ pipes - is known for his unique perspective. His personal heady glass designs include a line of “tea spill” based bongs where the bodies emulate the movement of spilling liquids. Evans’ style would seem to be at odds with Grav Labs’ line of scientific glass, but he has managed to inject his personality into their “Upline” collection.
The Upline Percolator
The Upline Collection is named for its signature Upline percolator - a creation of Evans. The upline perc is similar to a donut perc (a ring that disperses rising bubbles) but instead of being a ring, the upline perc is a thick circle built into the chamber that condenses smoke for filtration. The upline resembles a permanent light distortion that makes the pipe looked like it’s being pinched. Evans drew inspiration from Art Nouveau when creating these pipes. He specifically thought of JOB Cigarette Papers posters from the late 1800s/early1900s. This art had elegant geometric design which he thought would add an old-world style to Grav’s modern glass pipes. In addition, the upline percolator highlights - according to Evans - how “glass distorts and simultaneously aids our perception of the world around us; the way glass magnifies or shrinks a subject, how clear glass absorbs colors that surround it and reflect them back to the viewer”.
Aside from looking cool, the upline perc is also a particularly functional feature. Each segment of an upline perc pipe has reinforced smoke filtration, acts as a heat sink (i.e. it disperses heat) and limits splashback due to blocking water from rising. Due to its benefits and small size, Grav Labs doesn’t mind making pipes with several upline percs, like their original O.G. Upline Water Pipe. This first entry in the collection has an insane FIVE upline percs along a spine-like four chambers. Combined with the extra long 90 degree joint and nozzle-shaped mouthpiece, this pipe definitely stands out among bongs.
The Rest of The Collection
The other two water pipes in the collection are the Upline Hammer Bubbler and Upline Upright Bubbler. Both bubblers combine the upline perc with a conventional diffused downstem for extremely smooth smoking. They notably have upline percs along the mouthpiece as well, which act as a splashguard and further heat sink. If you want to add upline perc filtration to your water pipe, the collection includes an Upline Ashcatcher (in your choice of 45 or 90 degrees) that combines three upline percs with a showerhead downstem and Grav’s signature Male Octobowl.
The upline goes beyond water pipes: the collection also includes several hand pipes. Even without water, the upline perc’s heat sinking and pinched design makes dry smoke much less harsh. The hand pipe entries in this collection are the Clear Upline Steamroller, 5” Upline Spoon Pipe, and 3” Upline Taster.If your interested in checking out any other Grav Labs products, check out their catalog on DankStop.com!