Different Types Of Percolators
A percolators is a contraption for your bong or water pipe that helps to cool down smoke. This helps smokers achieve a smoother hit and way less coughing. They come in all different shapes and sizes, and have different designs for different bongs.
Tree Percolators, generally speaking, utilize between 1 – 8 individual flow paths, or ‘arms’. This can range to as high as 19 arms.
The more arms a design has the more intricate the glass work that is required – these high end tree percolators are extremely difficult to manufacture so they are rare.
These flow paths are paths for the smoke to enter the water. This is where the smoke is then diffused, cooled and filtered.
More recent variations of the tree percolator include bent arms and twisting trees.
Dome percolators use a singular glass dome to direct smoke to the bottom of the water column. Dome percolators can diffuse the smoke in many different ways.
These have varying designs and can have slits that are triangular, small holes around the base of the dome or even just a few larger holes to let the smoke pass.
Manufacturers usually have colourful art applied to the dome percolators and add interesting designs to them
Coil Percolators function the same as a tree percolator. The only difference here, is the trees have been bent. The coils direct the smoke into the water chamber, where diffusion occurs.
Coils generally have a long drag and can sometimes suffer from performance issues if purchased cheaply.
Dome percolators face a problem and Dewar percolators fix that problem.
The issue that most dome percolators face is that the vacuum that is created also creates back pressure, which in turn pushes water back into the bushing.
The Dewar percolator solves this by simply jacketing the dome. This stands up off of the bottom of the chamber which eliminates the issue of water being pushed back into the bushing.
Also known as a Halo percolator, the ring percolator is a variation of the tree percolator.
The variation is the single bent up stem which is attached to a U-Bend. This U-Bend wraps around the up stem and contains either small holes or slits.
Ring percolators are generally found in shorter bongs because these tend to have a longer drag. This is claimed to provide the user with a smoother hit.
These are extremely rare. These are not common and only a few are known to have been made.
Pinwheel Percolators combine a Dewar Percolator with low set arms. These are the set into a swirl pattern. The Pinwheel is essentially a re-engineered version of the ring percolator, above.
These are said to have a slow draw, which is supposed to provide several benefits. None of which have currently been proven.
Multiple Action Dewar
Multiple Action Dewar percolators are jacketed Dewar percolators. Inside there are round or compressed spheres inside. At the top of these spheres, holes allow smoke to surge intensely. The smoke then channels out of the slits at the bottom of the percolator.
This type of percolator essentially acts as an air diffuser and a water percolator in one piece.
Inline percolators are similar in the ways of the Dewar percolator. They are also similar to the tree percolator.
The way these work is there is an arm which is encased within a jacketed Dewar. The inline percolator contains slits down the arm and is usually found in the first chamber of the water pipe.
The slits of the inline can vary with diameter. This can cause visually entertaining bubble patterns and can also increase diffusion.
Honeycomb percolators are known for being efficient percolators. The singular traps could have upwards of over 100 holes within a singular honeycomb.
This makes use of the discs flat surface area. Whilst these types of percolators may require more frequent cleaning, the increased number of holes on the honeycomb percolator enables a large amount of percolation to occur.
These are also usually smaller in size due to the size of the traps
Fritted Disc Percolator
The Fritted Disc percolator is a disc of glass fragments which are bound together, leaving extremely small spaces between each fragment. This results in a very large number of holes for the smoke to pass through.
These holes become venues of percolation and diffusion. As with the Honeycomb Percolator, the Fritted Disc percolator does require more frequent cleaning due to its number of holes.
To partly solve this problem, an ash catcher may be a solution to reduce the need for solvent cleaning.
The Stereo perc, also known as a matrix perc, is a gridded series of slits in a matrix style design. The slits usually run completely around the perc and allow for 360 degree diffusion through the water.
A fairly simple perc shaped like a showerhead, slits or holes are placed to shoot smoke downwards. The showerhead perc is the vertical tube that flairs out at the bottom, with slits or holes for diffusion.