There is nothing like having a fresh new bowl to pass around with a few friends, enjoying the
purest true flavor of whatever you are indulging in at the time. For a while everything is wonderful in
the world. But what inevitably happens? The piece begins to get dirty, starts to smell horrible and taste
like dirty socks, or at least what I would assume dirty socks would taste like. So what can you do from
here? The time will eventually come that a choice has to be made. Either buy a new piece or clean the
one you have. It’s always nice to expand your collection but sometimes funds are a bit short. Now when
buying inexpensive gas station pipes buying a new one may not be a big deal, but hopefully at this point
you’ve gained an appreciation for quality glass and since you're here at GeorgiaGlassWorks.com, you obviously have. Nice pipes are expensive as the glassblower that made them put in their heart, soul, time and money to create these works of functional art. How about we return the appreciation and get this terrible smell and taste out of the piece.
Over the years the shelf behind the counter at your local headshop has been filled with cleaning
agents which can be the route you can take, certain more elaborate-multi-chamber pieces are worth the
investment in these products. But unless that’s the kind of piece you are working with it is a bit of
overkill, so how about a good home based solution. First step, I can’t quite recommend entirely but
getting whatever you can out of the piece makes for a few free sessions. You would want to start with a
toothpick inside the carb and the mouthpiece, then carefully scrapping the bowl with a knife, BEING
VERY CAREFUL NOT TO PICK TOO DEEP NEAR THE BOWL HOLE ONLY AROUND THE TOP HALF! A little trick here is turning the piece over and using a lighter to warm up the bowl to get everything to easily peel out. It also helps to have a piece of white paper to put all of the remanence on. After all of this it’s time to get the piece clean. This will take rubbing alcohol, coarse salt and a plastic bag big enough for
your piece to fit in. These methods are mainly geared towards the hand pipe size range, as the more
expensive larger pieces do require a bit stronger of a solvent, and may be worth going to the over the
Things you will need:
- Rubbing Alcohol
- Coarse Salt
- Plastic bag bigger than your piece your cleaning
- Access to a faucet with hot water
- Piece of white paper (optional)
- Lighter (optional)
- Pocket knife (optional)
1. Place the pipe in the bag and pour the rubbing alcohol in threw the mouth piece. Be sure the
bag is not going to tip to let the liquid fall out.
2. Next pour some salt in the mouth piece, followed by a bit more rubbing alcohol.
3. Close the bag and be sure to double check the seal, this is a terrible mess to spill everywhere. If
possible over a sink is best.
4. From here you simply swoosh the solution threw the pipe back and forth.
5. You may need to pull the pipe out and rinse with hot water to get some of the big chunks out,
and redo the first steps.
6. For an older pipe that has been caked for a long period of time, after giving it one good working
and rinsing, start with the first few steps again and leave the piece in the solution overnight.
This won’t hurt the piece at all but can get some of the tough stuff loose.
7. After most of the contaminants are removed a good rinse threw the hottest water out of a
faucet you can get should get the last free. This is also important to do thoroughly to get the
last of the salt and alcohol out before using the piece obviously.
8. In order to get the piece dry as quickly as possible, shake the pipe to get any little puddles of
water that have built up out. You can also roll up some paper towel or Q-tips to get some last
bits out depending on how clean you are going for.
9. It’s good to dry as much as you can by hand because you then have to let the piece dry anyways,
but less puddles of water will allow it to dry faster.
10. Make sure to have some tasty stuff to pack in your new clean pipe and enjoy the beauty of glass
as it can be easily cleaned and enjoyed as if it was new all over again!
Hope this helps! And you have a wonderful sesh. Be sure to mention to your friends who shared some
knowledge. Spread the word of the sweet online headshop GeorgiaGlassWorks that you found, and
that Krispy from Instagram: @krispysglass is sharing some knowledge here too, look forward to our next
Krispy’s Torch Side Talk