On Jan. 1, the state of Colorado legalized marijuana for recreational use and within days it was estimated that the Colorado marijuana industry would achieve $600 million in sales (both wholesale and retail) in its first year. It is also estimated that Colorado will generate around $70 million in tax revenue, an alluring aspect that might have other states (and countries) questioning their marijuana legislation. With Marijuana shops popping up all over Denver, along with the sale of marijuana, comes the sale of paraphernalia such as pipes, rolling papers, hookas, vaporizers and finally bongs.
While there are various ways to consume marijuana, bongs are a staple in many (if not most) marijuana user's paraphernalia collections.
Evidently when it comes to bongs or waterpipes, there is a high end market with a few big names all contending. ROOR, a glass company based in Germany is similar to Rolex in the sense that is undoubtedly the most publicized, and many marijuana users are familiar with the high end brand. Bongs from ROOR can go anywhere from $200 to $1000, sometimes even more. ROOR has a reputation among bong enthusiasts for using a special type of glass known as borosilicate, however ROOR is not alone in the high end market. Among others, Illadelph Glass is known for carrying some the highest quality glass pieces available, dishing out prices similar to its competitor ROOR.
There is no doubt that brands have their presence in the bong market, but so do independent glass artists who produce what many people consider (functional) works of art. Even non-smokers can appreciate the beauty behind some independent pieces from glass blowers like Scott Deppe, which are very colourful, complicated, and unique. With a huge underground market there will undoubtedly be some pieces that should have made the list but just aren't publicized, however here are some of the Internet's most expensive bongs.
9 Evol Empire Glass Waterpipe – Zombie: $977.78
High end bong brand Evol Empire received a little help from Illinois glass artists Ghost and Gordon to produce this zombie glass piece. This piece is what is known as a straight tube and boasts a pre-cooler which helps smooth out smoke before it reaches the X-Perc gridded percolator. If the smoke wasn't smooth enough before the percolator it certainly will be after. In addition, the bong sports a standard glass bowl piece with the “EE” logo on the slide handle. This bong is available online and in case you were wondering, the provider offers a same day dispatch before 4:20 p.m.
8 Illadelph – Signature Rasta Coil Waterpipe: $1,056.74
As mentioned above, Illadelph is known for creating high end pieces. Using what is known as a detachable coil condenser, owners of this piece can place the neck of their bong into the freezer. Glycerin inside the coil condenser freezes, leaving smokers with a super cool and really smooth smoking experience. With a gold outlined logo on the beaker, this bong is for the connoisseur of fine smoking devices.
7 Freeek Tube: $2,700.00
This wild piece of work known as the Freeek Tube is hand spun adding for a custom touch and an extra bragging right. This piece features what is known as fillacello design work, a process where the glass artist paints the molten glass with a molten boro rod. This method can give a piece a truly refined and distinct colour pattern as is seen in the Freeek Tube. In addition this piece features more than a few horns, giving it that freeek look, as well as a 'rap 'n' rake diffuser, and like many other custom pieces, a Freek Milli Signature on one of the rear horns.
6 ROOR Bong Custom Little Sista 7mm - Editor Special: $3,750
Of course ROOR had to come up on the list at some point, and at #7, this piece can be considered a landmark in terms of brand name, high end, waterpipes. Although at first glimpse this bong looks like a basic setup, upon closer inspection, the high end features reveal themselves. Sporting a diamond studded, solid gold Roor logo on the upper tube the price tag starts to make sense. The cosmetics don't end there. Directly below the ROOR logo, is a dichro embedded marble. On each side of the marble are two solid silver hemp leaves. Essentially every piece or at least its tips have been touched with gold. This piece also features a custom, ruby studded ashcatcher. If that wasn't enough, the mouthpiece is embedded with opal. If you like your bling, this is the bong for you.
5 Illadelph Coil/Salt custom #4: $5,000
Some pieces are rare gems that you will only be able to find in small headshops, and as is the case with the Illadelph coil/salt custom bong #4, a photo was uploaded to the internet with the user claiming it was for sale for $5,000 at their local shop. With the added touch from talented glass artist Salt who worked with Illadelph for ten days to create four unique pieces, this limited edition piece is truly a distinct bong for the high end buyer. Considering this bong was produced in 2009, getting your hands on one might be a little difficult. The user who uploaded the image said his local shop owner didn't plan to sell it and he thought of it as more of a conversation piece.
4 Scott Deppe's Grateful 4 Mushrooms: $14,251.90
Where to start with a piece like this? Needless to say, psychedelic mushrooms might have been a little inspiration for this piece. It is evident from first glance, this is not your standard smoking device. Complete with 11 sections, dancing bear sculptures with dichroic collars, mushroom bushel detailing, multicolor ribbon cane wing attachments, and a right hand carburetor, this is an ultimate collectors piece. When the artist is calling it a show piece, you know you aren't just buying a smoking device, but buying a true piece of art. Designed to hang on the wall, this piece functions more as a glass masterpiece than a smoking device.
Standing at 6ft tall, the ROOR Excalibur is ROOR's tallest bong. With a 33cm base, fire and ice patterns and its own travel case, this ROOR was the HTCC 2009 Glass Cup winner, a brag worthy title if you're a serious glass piece enthusiast. Cypress Hill member B-Real is the lucky owner of a specially commissioned Cypress Hill Roor Excalibur. There's even images of the band using this piece at one of their concerts. While some high end bongs may get stuck in a display case and never used, there's a good chance Cypress Hill's Excalibur is getting used on a daily basis.
3 Scott Deppe's Take me 2 the MOTHERSHIP: $22,154
This alien montage bubbler on a rainbow cane pull stand by Scott Deppe is not your run of the mill bubbler. Keeping with the psychedelic theme, Take me 2 the MOTHERSHIP is absolute eye candy for the serious glass piece collector. With its own alien pilot, this piece also features highly detailed colour patterns all over its 23 sections. The piece also features a rainbow grip on the left side and a carburetor on the right side. Words cannot do this piece justice other than the fact that it looks like something out of Alice in Wonderland. When it comes to a piece like this, you aren't just paying for the brand or the name, you're paying for the countless hours it goes into creating a custom work of art.
2 The pirate ship bubbler: $30,000
It is considered by the digital community as the most expensive bong, and one look at it and you can probably take a guess as to why. This massive pirate ship is detailed right to the anchor and cannons. Literally every piece of this bong is made out of glass, even the sails. Not much is known about the piece, but it is located at a glass shop called Illuzion in Denver, CO. This is not the type of piece you want to accidentally break in a stoned stupor. If you have deep enough pockets to add this piece to your collection, you might want to look into insuring the piece at the same time.
1 1.The Miley Cyrus bong: $70,000
The pirate ship bubbler is certainly a masterpiece and definitely a landmark in functioning glass pieces - with a price tag to match, however when it comes to the world's most expensive bong, it all comes down to its story. In 2011 it was reported that the bong which Miley Cyrus was filmed taking a hit from sold to a secret buyer for $70,000, topping all the high end bongs we have listed. As is often mentioned in the countless marijuana forums, a piece is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it, and evidently, a back-story can be worth more than any amount of glass work and custom touches.