Glossary of Glass

A list of terms and glass industry jargon used throughout this website.

Adapterdropdown adapter, attachment, converterAn adapter is a glass add-on that is mainly used convert one joint size/type to another. In its most basic form it is a glass tube with a glass joint on either side. For example, one common application is to convert a female joint (common on water pipes) to a male joint (common on concentrate rigs, for use with a nail and dome). Some adapters incorporate additional elements such as a reclaim catcher. Check out CGP's collection of adapters here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Adapters
Ash Catcherpre-coolerAn ash catcher is a glass add-on that creates an additional water chamber for your water pipe. The ashcatcher will typically fit into the joint that your slide fits in, and then you put the slide at the other end of the ashcatcher. They will commonly contain a percolater or diffusor. The overall effect is an extra layer of filtration, creating a smoother experience. Check out CGP's collection of ashcatcher here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Ashcatchers
Bangerbucket, bucket nailA type of domeless nail, typically made of quartz glass. Its main features are a 'bucket' shaped nail head, connected to a pipe shaft. A great simple domeless option.
Borosilicateboro, pyrex, hard glassThe type of glass that virtually all of our pieces are made of. It is known for having very low coefficients of thermal expansion, making it resistant to thermal shock, more so than any other common glass. Its arguably the best type of glass to make a pipe from. Virtually all modern laboratory glassware is borosilicate glass. It is also commonly used in cookware, glassware, flashlight lenses, reflecting telescope mirrors, and much much more.
BowlpipeThe bowl-shaped part of a piece that you would fill with flowers / dry product / tobacco. 'Bowl' is also simply a common term for a hand-pipe (especially a spoon), however for our purposes we will use the term bowl to describe a particular part of a pipe.
BubblerA bubbler is a pipe that incorporates water to cool and filter the smoke. Usually they are small to medium size pieces for use with dry product. The bowl is typically part of the piece (as opposed to having a removable slide). Check out CGP's collection of bubblers here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Bubblers
Carb CapA carb cap is an accessory for concentrate rigs, espcially useful for domeless set-ups. It is placed atop the nail after the concentrate is applied. This helps keep any vapor/smoke from escaping and being wasted, while also allowing for a lower-temperature vaporization, as it holds in heat and causes a convection heating effect. Check out CGP's collection of carb cap here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Carb Caps
Carb Holerush, choke, carburetorThe hole on the side of a hand-pipe used to regulate the smoke passing through. Typically you would hold it shut with your finger, light up, get the piece filled with your preferred amount of smoke, and then let go of the carb hole to clear the piece.
Chillumsometimes referred to as a "one-hitter", but not all chillums should be considered one-hittersA chillum is arguably the simplest type of hand pipe. It is essentially a straight tube with the mouth piece on one side and the bowl on the other. Check out CGP's collection of chillums here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Chillums
Concentrate Rigrig, vapor rig, water pipeA concentrate rig is a water pipe designed for use with concentrate product (as opposed to dry flowers). Typically a concentrate rig makes use of a nail (see nail description below). The nail is heated up, usually with a butane torch lighter. When hot enough, a 'dabber tool' is used to apply concentrate product the hot nail, causing the product almost instantly vaporize. When done right, the result is a nice vapor (as opposed to smoke from a combustion process) which is inhaled throught the concentrate rig. This process is generally considered ideal for taste and health reasons, as concentrate product is more pure and does not contain as much excess material that combust. Check out CGP's collection of concentrate rigs here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Concentrate Rigs
Concentrate Strawnectar collectorOften referred to as a Nectar Collector - similar to how a tissue is often referred to as a Kleenex. Nectar Collector is a specific brand. A concentrate straw in its simplest form is a glass tube that is heated at one end, similar to a nail. When hot enough, the end of the straw is applied directly to concentrate product and causes it to instantly vaporize. The vapor is simultaneously drawn through the straw. It is a simple and easy way to consume your concentrate product, although not necessarily the smoothest, since most of them do not incorporate water.
Dabberconcentrate utensil or toolA tool for applying concentrate product to a nail. Concentrate can be very hard to work with as it can be thin and sticky. Instead of trying to simply drop it onto your nail (which can be dangerous), get some product stuck to the tip of a dabber tool and use it to apply the product directly to the nail. Dabber tools are designed to take the heat of a nail. Check out CGP's collection of dabber tools here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Dabber Tools
Diffusorholes, slits, branches, armsHoles or slits on a section of glass pipe that splits the smoke bubbles into many smaller bubbles, thus increasing diffusion and making for a smoother hit. A tree perc, for example, is made of several tubes called 'arms', each arm has a diffusor at the end and usually slits in the glass close to the end to create even more exit paths. Many downstems have a diffusor at the end that goes into water. A disc diffusor is also common - also called a honeycomb - composed of a glass disc with many holes in it.
DishA dish made for holding your concentrate product or other goodies.
DomeAn essential part of certain concentrate rig set-ups - although there are domeless options. The dome is a dome-shaped glass piece with a female joint worked into the bottom. After the nail is heated, the dome is slide over top of it, and then the concentrate is applied. As it turns to vapor and is inhaled through the pipe, the dome helps direct the vapor/smoke into the pipe and helps prevent smoke from escaping and being wasted. Most domes have an opening at the top through which the dabber tool applies the concentrate product. These are referred to as 'top-loaded' domes. There are also 'side-loaded' domes that have the opening on the side. Check out CGP's collection of domes here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Glass Domes
Down Stemdrop stemThe down stem is a glass tube that protrudes into the water chamber of a pipe. It routes the vapor/smoke into the water. Often the end of the tube that goes into water will have more than one hole or slit which separates the vapor/smoke into multiple bubbles. The resulting increase in diffusion makes for a smoother hit. Down stems are often removable pieces to allow for easier cleaning of the pipe and also to allow for different down stems to be used. Check out CGP's collection of down stems here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Down Stems
Drop DownA type of adapter that 'drops down' and comes up again with the second joint. Drop downs are commonly used to extend the distance between the mouthpiece and the dome.
DugoutA descreet container, usually made of wood but sometimes metal or plastic, with a lid that has two chambers, one to hold a chillum, and one to hold tobacco / flowers / dry product. A tried-and-true setup with a long history, dugouts are all about simplicity and convenience. Some would call it the whiskey flask of the smoking world.
ElectroformElectroforming is a process that causes a piece to have a layer of copper on it. An electroformed piece has been submerged in a solution that causes copper to stick to the piece and build an outer layer of shiny copper. Mostly a cosmetic effect, but can also contribute to the durability and structural integrity of the piece. Electroforming can also be used to encase and encorporate objects that would not normally be able to be incorporated into the piece, such as a chung of beehive. Check out CGP's collection of electroformed glass here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Electroformed Glass
Fuming / Fumedcolor-changing glass, chameleon glassThe process of fuming uses the fumes from burning precious metals - particularly silver and gold - to add color to clear glass. This process was originally discovered (on accident!) by the famous glass-blowing innovator, Bob Snodgrass. It is now a time-honored technique used around the world. The resulting colors range from blues and yellows to reddish hues. The colors tend to darken and change as the piece is used, giving the piece a color-changing effect. This color-changing glass is often mistakingly referred to as 'chameleon glass'. Chameleon Glass is actually a well known glass art studio, so for this reason we simply refer to it as fumed glass or fuming work. Check out CGP's collection of fumed glass here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Fumed Glass
Glass-on-glassA glass-on-glass item is one that uses ground glass joints as connecting points. This technology is very much ideal and preferred in the glass world. Items that have glass joints are modular in a way, since the joints are mostly standardized - almost all joints conform to the common sizes of 10mm, 14mm, or 18mm (sometimes referred to as 19mm).
GrinderA device that grinds your herbs into smaller pieces to make it more manageable and smoke better. Check out CGP's collection of grinders here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Grinders
HammerA hammer is a type of hand pipe very similar to a spoon, however the base of the main air chamber extends downward, making an overall shape similar to a hammer. Some types will include a built-in downstem directly beneath the bowl, and the air chamber is to be partially filled with water - these are referred to as hammer bubblers. Check out CGP's collection of hammers here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Hammers
Hand Pipebowl, pipeA hand pipe is typically a piece that does not incorporate water and is designed to use with dry product. Usually a hand pipe is small and portable enough to fit comfortably in one hand. Different types of hand pipes include spoons (most common), sherlocks, chillums, hammes, and sidecars. Check out CGP's collection of hand pipes here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Hand Pipes
Heady glassThe term heady glass is used to describe glass pieces that can truly be described as unique works of art. Heady glass pieces are typically one-of-a-kind (as opposed to mass-produced). With heady glass you may see one or more of the following: lots of colored glass, fuming, electroforming, detailed line-working, alternative shapes and form factors, encased opals, replicas, and more. Check out CGP's collection of heady glass art here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Heady Glass Art
Ice PinchUsually refers to indentations on a water pipe, half way down, designed to hold ice. These dents protrude into the pipe, creating spikes or bumps. They are designed to hold ice in the tube (preventing it from falling straight onto the downstem which could break it). Having ice in your piece is a great way to cool off the vapor/smoke before it reaches you, created a much much smoother experience.
Illuminati GlassUV-reactive glassA type of glass that glows in the dark or when exposed to UV light / a black light.
Jointground glass jointThe mainstay of glass-on-glass technology. Originally used in laboratories to quickly and easily fit leak-tight apparatus together from commonly available parts. Joints are incorporated into any glass piece that is made to fit and attach to another glass piece. Joints are either male or female. A male joint fits into a female joint. A female joint fits onto or around a male joint. For example - a slide commonly has a male joint at the bottom, made to attach to the female joint on a water pipe. Joints are usually one of three standardized sizes - 10mm, 14mm, or 18mm. This eliminates any guess-work of wondering, 'will it fit?'.
MarblemasherA glass sphere for display purposes only. A great alternative for glass art collectors who want a piece that they won't end up smoking with! Check out CGP's collection of marbles here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Marbles
MartiniA type of bowl, most commonly seen on glass slides for water pipes, that resembles a martini glass. It has a conical or funnel shape.
MillimillifioriFor our purposes, milli describes a disc-shaped glass accent, usually melted onto the side of a piece, with a colored picture inside. A milli is actually a rod of glass that can be cut into discs like slices of pepporoni, and each 'slice' will have the same picture.
Mouth PieceThe hole that you press your lips against when using the piece.
NailOften resembles a simple carpenters nail. Nails are made for use with concentrates. Heat is applied to the nail, usually with a torch lighter. After it has been heated, concentrate product is applied directly to the nail, causing it to instantly vaporize. Some nails require a glass dome to help route the vapor into the concentrate rig and prevent vapor from escaping. Other nails have a domeless design and route the vapor by other means. There are also electric nails that don't require heating with a torch lighter - you simply plug it in, dial in the temperature, and the nail heats itself. Nails are commonly made of either borosilicate glass, quartz glass, titanium, or ceramic. Check out CGP's collection of nails here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Nails
One-HitterA small-capacity chillum that is designed to hold just one 'hit' at once. Pack it up, take a toke, empty the ashes, repeat.
Pendant RigA mini concentrate rig that is able to be strung on a necklace and worn like a pendant.
PercolatorpercA section of a water pipe, bubbler, or ash catcher that is designed to split the smoke bubbles into many smaller bubbles, thus increasing diffusion and making for a smoother hit. The most common type is a tree perc.
Push BowlpushA type of bowl that is created by the glassblower by pushing into the piece, leaving a dent (bowl), with one hole located in the center.
QuartzThe optical and thermal properties of fused quartz are superior to those of other types of glass due to its purity. However it is much harder to work with than borosilicate glass - it much higher melting temperature. For this reason you typically won't find a whole pipe made with quartz glass - as awesome as that would be. Instead quartz is typically used for components that need a very high tolerance to heat - mainly nails, dabber tools, and carb caps. A quartz nail is generally preferred over a borosilicate nail for its tolerance to heat, resistance to breaking/cracking, and its purity. Some choose quartz over titanium because they say titanium nails produce a subtle metallic taste, however it all comes down to personal preference.
Reclaim CatcherA section of glass pipe, usually incorporated into a concentrate rig or an adapter, designed specifically to capture 'reclaim' before it goes further into your pipe.
SandblastingSandblasting is a process that uses sand as an abrasive blasting material to strip away layers of glass. The result is often a 'frosted' glass appearance and texture. It will decrease transparency of the glass and give it a texture feel, as opposed to normal polished smooth glass. Often used to create a decal of a logo on a piece, but can also be used to add fine detailling, geometrical shapes, and a alternate or carved texture. Check out CGP's collection of sandblasted glass art here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Sandblasted Glass Art
Scientific GlassBasically the opposite of the concept of 'heady glass', these pieces are designed not for the art collector in mind but for the every-man who just wants something that will work and work well. Practical, affordable, straight-to-the-point, bang-for-your-buck utility. Typically made of clear glass or a single solid color.
ScreenA type of filter that prevents ash or product from getting into the piece. Disposable filters can be added to any regular hand pipe to prevent anything solid from getting into your mouth. Some slides have built-in screens to prevent ash from getting into your water pipe. Screens are commonly made from steel, brass, ceramic, glass, or titanium.
SherlockA hand pipe shaped like a classic wood tobacco pipe - like one the famous Sherlock Holmes is known to use. The pipe curves downward from the mouthpiece and back up again for the bowl to create a sort of hook shape. Check out CGP's collection of sherlocks here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Sherlocks
Side CarA side car is an offset hand pipe that consists of a air chamber with a mouthpiece tube coming off the side of it. The term 'side car' is also used to describe the overall shape of certain bubblers, concentrate rigs, and/or water pipes. Check out CGP's collection of sidecar here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Sidecars
SlideA slide is essentially a removable bowl piece for a water pipe. A slide is made to be loaded with dry product/flowers. After lighting the product and pulling the smoke into the water pipe, the slide is typically removed, and then the user inhales further and the water pipe is cleared of smoke. Slides can come in many shapes and sizes. A push-bowl slide is a simple slide that has a bowl similar to the kind you would see on a spoon pipe. A martini style slide is shaped similarly to a martini glass - conical or funnel-like. Most slides have a male joint that fits into a down stem with a female joint. However there are female slides - these are espcially useful for using a concentrate rig (which usually have a male joint) as a normal water pipe. Some slides have a built in screen (as opposed to a single hole). A screen is a sort of filter that prevents flowers or ashes from falling through into your piece. One type of screen is referred to as a D.D. or disc diffusor screen. This is basically a glass disc with multiple holes in it. Other slides incorporate an 'ice pinch' screen - glass bumps/spikes protrude inward to hold up the flowers. Check out CGP's collection of slides here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Slides
Specialty WorkA category we use to describe any pipe that doesn't conform to the common form factors such as spoon, sherlock, etc. Any pipe that is hard to put into a category because its shape and form is very unique and different will be listed under 'Specialty Work'. Check out CGP's collection of specialty work here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Specialty Work
SpoonThe most common and recognizeable type of hand pipe, the spoon bowl is tried and true. Shaped somewhat like a spoon, with one section comprising the air chamber and bowl, and another section as the pipe and mouthpiece . A spoon bowl will commonly incorporate a carb hole / rush. Check out CGP's collection of spoons here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Spoons
Steam RollerA steam roller is a simple and effective type of hand pipe that is essentially a pipe, open-ended on both ends, with a bowl pushed somewhere along the middle. One end is the mouth-piece, the other end is a (relatively large) carb hole. The user will typically use the palm of their hand to cover the carb hole (as opposed to a finger tip). Check out CGP's collection of steam rollers here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Steam Rollers
TurbineA set of glass fins that cause the water and/or smoke to rotate and spin, creating a whirlpool-like effect.
Vaporizervapes, vape pensA device that uses electricity to vaporize product instead of burning it. The result is vapor, instead of smoke. The idea here is to get your product just to the right temperature that it releases the active chemicals without releasing any of the other chemicals (i.e. releases the active ingredient without burning the rest.) Compared to simply burning your product and inhaling the smoke, vaporizing is less crude and innefficient. There aren't as many toxins or by-products inhaled when you avoid combustion. Vapor is also preffered by some for its taste and smoothness. Its easier on the lungs and therefore is a much better method for medical patients who want to avoid inhaling smoke. Vaporizers come in many forms and shapes. There are table-top units that plug into your wall and allow you to dial in the exact temperature. There are also portable 'vape pens' that have a built-in rechargeable battery. E-cigs are a type of vape pen that take a vaporize a liquid form of nicotine (called e-juice). There are also herbal vaporizers for vaporizing dry product as well as concentrate vaporizers for use with essential oils or similar substances. There are even pocket-size vape pens that are designed to be able to accommadate dry flowers, concentrate/oils, AND e-juice. Check out CGP's collection of vaporizers here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Vaporizers
Water PipeOften referred to as a 'bong' - a water pipe is a pipe that uses water to filter and cool the smoke. A water pipe designed for use with concentrates is typically called a concentrate rig. Therefore, when someone says water pipe they are typically referring to a piece designed for use with dry product / flowers - however some pieces are designed for use with both. The main difference between a water pipe and a bubbler is size. A bubbler will be more portable and hand-held, while a water pipe is more of a table-top unit, usually larger than 8 inches. Another noteable difference is a bubbler is usually one solid piece with a built-in bowl, while a water pipe will have a removable bowl piece called a slide. This can be seen as an advantage, as the removable slide makes it easier to clean, allows the piece to be cleared of smoke all at once without taking in more smoke, and also opens up more options for customization. Just to name a few examples - one can buy a simple water pipe and then later down the road add an ashcatcher, upgrade the downstem, or add necessary components to use the water pipe for concentrates. Check out CGP's collection of water pipes here: Cupboard Glass Pipes Water Pipes
Wig-WagreversalA type of lineworking that consists of opposing spirals.
WorkedThe adjective 'worked' implies hand-crafted lamp work, usually using colored glass, as opposed to a simple transparent scientific glass piece.