If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, RooR is the most flattered glass producer in the industry. RooR Glass' name recognition has led them to be a popular target for cheap knockoff pipes. Much of this comes from RooR’s simple yet signature style: the RooR logo with the R’s facing inward, the colored glass signature by the individual glassblower, and the always present 3-prong ice catcher. In addition to copying these attributes, unscrupulous glassblowers make websites that feature a photo of RooR’s founder, Martin Birzle, in order to gain customers’ trust. Despite the challenges posed by these crooks, Martin has a good attitude about his imitators: “If you’re not good, nobody copies you” was his response to a fan at 2012’s Treating Yourself Expo in Toronto. After over 20 years of revolutionizing the glass game, Martin can understand why lesser artists try to replicate his brand.
The Beginning of RooR
The German-born Martin started making and selling water pipes in 1995. What separated his work from his competitors was (according to him) the perfect balance between volume and water ratio. Martin chooses not to share what that perfect balance is, but reviewers from sites such as 420 Science have described taking pulls from RooR glass pipes as “effortless”. Another mystery of the RooR brand is its name. Martin has said it has a double meaning: ‘rohr’ is the German word for pipe and RooR’s spelling is a reference to the ‘ro-or’ in ‘micro-organism’. The meaning of this explanation escapes us, but what’s in a name when you’re producing the glass game’s best bongs? Martin was the sole producer, seller and shipper of RooR for 4 years before he created a team to assist him. Once the team was assembled, they went on to create simple yet effective innovations such as diffused downstems and ice-catchers.
Collaboration with Cypress Hill
Martin’s ability to collaborate became key to making RooR one of the most recognized (and plagiarized) names in the industry. The RooR team’s construction of the world’s biggest bong in 2009 caught the attention of classic rapper and glass entrepreneur B-Real of Cypress Hill. B-Real became RooR’s biggest celebrity fan, which led to them collaborating with the artist to make a line of multi-colored glass filters called Phuncky Feel Tips. These glass pieces provide a sturdy handle for hand-rolled cigarettes and allow for a smooth smoke. RooR has had other collabs with artists such as Hops, Drizzl and Johnny Rise, but their magnum opus was the collab with fellow German glass artist Bernd Weinmayer. For the 2011 High Times Cup, they won first place with the Ray Machine; a bong shaped like an alien raygun combined with a skeleton. Inside it housed an separate chamber with neon gas that created a plasma lamp effect. After the inaugural smoke sesh with B-Real, the water pipe was sold for an astounding $9,000.
How To Tell If A RooR Is Real
At this point, you’re probably considering picking up a RooR bong of your own. That’s a good decision, but remember that there are many fakes out there. Besides buying your bong from a trusted seller such as DankStop, there are ways you can determine whether your RooR glass is the real deal:
- RooRs have colored glass signatures merged into their chambers. These signatures are below the ice-catcher and above the joint. If you see a bong with dots around the joint, it’s a fake.
- RooR logos always face the left of the bong and they never cover the ice-catcher or percolator
- RooR pieces only have 3-prong ice catchers. If the piece has more, it’s fake.
- Percolated RooRs have splashguards
- Not all RooRs have diffused downstems, so bongs without them aren’t necessarily fake
- A RooR logo on the box does not guarantee a real RooR
- RooR glass is THICK so if the bong feels light, it’s not RooR
With these things in mind, you too can feel confident in owning the gold standard of water pipes! Go check out DankStop’s collection of RooR Glass products.
- published by DankStop