How to Properly Use Ash Catchers
Whether you are new to the smoking world or are just looking for a cool way to get a better hit, an ash catcher is a must-have accessory. Ash catchers are not typically included with water pipes but are considered to be a great supplement that can make your smoking experience even more satisfying. Before we teach you how to properly use them, let's define what ash catchers actually are.
What Are Ash Catchers?
Ash catchers are accessories for water pipes that can be easily attached and removed. Their main purpose is to ensure a clean hit by catching any nasty residues from the herb you smoke. These accessories can also work to filter the smoke before it hits the percolator of the water pipe. This can enhance your smoking experience with a smoother rip. You'll also love the convenience of only having to clean out your ash catcher as opposed to your entire water pipe.
If you're interested in using one of these water pipe attachments for extra filtration, you have many options. Ash catchers come in a variety of different styles, sizes, and shapes. It's important to realize that when you are looking to buy an ash catcher, there are a few factors you need to consider so you can be sure your new accessory fits your water pipe perfectly.
Factor One: The Joint Size
In order to ensure a snug fit for your ash catcher, you will need to know what the size of the joint is. Most standard sizes are 10mm, 14mm, and 18mm. It's important to know the exact size as getting the wrong size will result in the ash catcher not fitting into the joint or there being seeps present where the smoke will escape. We don't recommend using any sort of joint adapters to fit the wrong size ash catcher on the water pipe because they tend to add more weight to the feel of the water pipe itself and don't always provide a secure fit.
Factor Two: Is It Female or Male?
Each water pipe joint has either a male or female joint. Male joints tend to be thinner and longer. The female joints are wider and tend to be shorter. The male joint will always rest securely inside of the female joint. This means you will need to purchase an ash catcher that has the opposite gender joint. For example, if your water pipe has a male joint, your ash catcher will need to have a female joint. This ensures they'll fit snugly together so your smoke will not seep out.
Factor Three: The Joint Angle
All water pipe joints are established with either a 90-degree or a 45-degree angle. A quick look at how your joint protrudes from your pipe and you will be able to tell which degree your joint angle is. The ash catcher you purchase must be the same joint angle. This means if your water pipe joint extends at a 90-degree angle, the ash catcher you use with it must have a joint angle of 90-degrees. If you fail to match up the angles correctly, it can lead to the ash catcher unintentionally sliding out of the pipe and smoke escaping.
Factor Four: Ash Catcher Weight and Size
Once you get the above factors figured out, you'll have a better idea of the selection of ash catchers that will work with your individual water pipe. Now, it's time to look at the specifics of the size and weight of the ash catcher. You want to ensure the ash catcher isn't too big that it won't properly sit against your water pipe. Ensure the weight of the ash catcher is not too heavy that it will tip over your water pipe when you attach it. These two things will help you figure out what style ash catcher will function and look good with your existing water pipe.
Using Your Ash Catcher
Now that you have a perfectly fitting ash catcher, it's time to discover just how to properly use it to get the best hits from your water pipe. The ash catcher gets attached to your water pipe at the joint, where you would usually put in your bowl. The bowl then simply gets put in the ash catcher. So, for a quick recap, that's the joint from your water pipe, the ash catcher, and then your bowl on top.
You light your herb in the bowl as normal. When you take your hit, the burnt ash gets stuck in the ash catcher. This prevents the burnt ash from going into the main chamber. It's important to note that you will need to pay close attention to the water level in your pipe. If you fill it too full, the water will seep through to the ash catcher and pick up some of the burnt ash residues.
Ash Catchers That Add Diffusion
If your water pipe is already packed full of percs, then you may just be looking for a basic ash catcher that keeps the ash residue out of your pipe water. However, if you would like to enhance the smoothness of your hit, you can opt for an ash catcher that has a percolator. There are a few different types, which include the showerhead, honeycomb, inline, and tree.
These all will allow for better percolation of the smoke, therefore making your pipe hits smoother. Most of these ash catchers are made with one chamber. However, there are some two chamber ash catchers available that can better diffuse the smoke for an even more pleasurable hit. Depending on your preferences for smoothness and your budget, there are many ash catcher options that you can opt for.
If you are an avid water pipe user, an ash catcher is a great investment that we are sure you won't regret. Not only will they allow for a cleaner water pipe, but they can greatly enhance the flavor of your hit with added diffusion. You can typically find ash catchers for between $20 and $70 depending on the specifics of the design and its added uses, such as more percs.