The Great Debate - Beakers vs. Straight Tubes

Posted by Robert C on

So youʼre in the market for a water bong? Good choice! The good olʼ bong is a favorite for smokers due to its ability to make smoking much more comfortable. Scientific bongs are especially made to offer the best in smoking technology. As the name implies, scientific bongs are based on the scientific glass containers used in laboratories, particularly test tubes and beakers. Even heady glass pipes tend to be based around a tube or beaker shape. Both of these designs have their benefits, which weʼll now look at.


Grav Labs Beaker Bong


While actual scientific beakers can be have multiple shapes, beaker bongs are either cone-shaped or bubble-shaped. This design gives the beaker bong a low center of gravity: itʼs easy for them to stand up on their own. This means that you donʼt have to worry about your water pipe being unable to stand up on your carpet or any other uneven surface. Theyʼre also good for those worried about accidentally tipping their water pipe. The wide body of the beaker bong holds a large amount of water. Due to the indent separating the mouthpiece from the bottom, smokers donʼt have to worry about that water splashing into their mouth while in use. It can also hold more air, which means more smoke. The wideness of beaker bongs allows for bigger percolators, especially disc percs. For smaller bongs, the beaker design offers a decent weight that allows for more comfortable handling when passing around. Many smokers enjoy the heavy “chug” sound beakers make when the air moves from the beaker towards the tube.



Straight tubes are exactly what they sound like: straight cylinders with a flat base. The straight tube is the oldest bong design, since bongs were originally made of bamboo stalks. Appropriately, straight tubes are known for their efficiency: the shape of the chamber allows for smooth, powerful hits of smoke. Smokers donʼt have to inhale very hard to get all of the smoke in their pipe. As opposed to the heavier chug of a beaker bong, straight tubes have a soft “purr” sound when in use. This sound is partially due to how straight tubes stack bubbles, as opposed to the larger and less numerous bubbles in a beaker. Many straight tubes have ice-catchers at the top, which are prongs that protrude in the chamber to hold ice cubes. This significantly cools down your smoke. Not all straight tubes have a uniform design: some are tapered so they have an indent like beaker bongs (though not as pronounced). Straight tubes tend to have more tree percs due to their narrowness. Many companies incorporate condenser coils into their straight tubes, with Illadelph being noteworthy for having freezable coils that immensely cool smoke.

The most important thing to consider when buying a bong is what is comfortable for you. Do you want a smooth, efficient inhale? Do you want a sturdy water pipe with maximum filtration? Take into consideration that many scientific bongs combine the best of both worlds; with wide beaker bottoms that lead to long straight tube necks. Check out our selection of water bongs and figure out which one will give you the best smoking experience.

Grav Labs Straight Tube

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