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how to fix a broken glass pipe stem

How to Fix a Broken Bong Downstem

Broken bong downstems are not the end of the world for your bong. First, you need to assess the damage. Where’s the damage located and how badly damaged is your downstem? Once you have finished your assessment, you can decide on how to tackle the repairs.

Tip 1: Duct tape

Duct tape can be used if your downstem has clean breaks, and/or if there are only less than three pieces to join together.

  1. Clean the edges thoroughly and make sure they are dry.
  2. Join the broken pieces together as tightly and seamlessly as you can
  3. Wrap the duct tape around to secure all the parts.

Note that this is only a temporary solution, especially if the broken piece is submerged in water. Duct tape will thicken up your beaker bong downstem. You may have to remove the grommet at the joint for the downstem to fit through. However, do not expect the same seamless, airless junction as before.

Tip 2: Using bonding agents

Bonding agents such as food grade silicone or food grade epoxy give a semi-permanent solution to your broken downstem.

Using food grade silicone:
  1. Clean the parts well, handling the cracks with care.
  2. Prepare your food grade silicone as instructed.
  3. Apply the silicone on the edges, giving careful attention to the cracks.
  4. Join the pieces together.
  5. Wait for the silicone to dry according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Using food grade epoxy:
  1. Make sure that the edges are clean and smooth. You may want to score out the jagged edges using a triangular file. Once the edges are smoothed out, rub the cut edges against fine-grit sandpaper.
  2. Wipe the downstem parts clean
  3. Apply the epoxy around the edges and bond the pieces together.
  4. Wait for the parts to become dry before using.

There are other industrial strength bonding agents that you can use. However, use them carefully as they contain toxic substances that can be dangerous to your health.

Tip 3: Blowtorch

The best and almost-100%-permanent way to fix your downstem is to use a blowtorch. Torching also gives you the option of attaching small broken pieces in the bong downstem. However, this is best left to professionals because of the extreme temperature and fire hazard. Should you wish to try this, make sure that you did all the necessary precautions against fire accidents.

  1. Inspect the edges parts of the broken downstem. You need to file out the jagged edges for a clean join.
  2. Prop a piece of the downstem on a clamp. Us a pair of sturdy tongs with an excellent grip to hold the other piece.
  3. Torch the pieces by directing the blue flame to the edges. Keep going until the glass glows bright red.
  4. Join the pieces together, torching along the way until you feel the pieces bonding. Add in a small broken piece the same way.
  5. Let the pieces cool naturally.

Use a torch with caution. A torch can be used for removable bowl stems. There’s a risk that the high heat will crack your bong’s water chamber.

Study your chosen method well when fixing your own downstem. You can hire a professional for a cleaner fix, but that will cost you a hefty sum. Depending on the damage, you may be better off buying a new bowl downstem.

Learning how to fix a broken bong downstem can save you a lot. Know the different ways to fix your bowl and see which one is applicable for you. ]]>