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hookahvoodoo

Hello All

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I'm Jeremy, from the Shreveport/Bossier region of Louisiana. My list of hobbies is pretty long as it is, but I'm looking to add hookah back to it.

A few years ago some friends and I made a spur of the moment roadtrip to Florida, and during one of our stops we ended up at a hookah lounge. I'm not sure of the place or even what city now (may have been Tampa), but I loved the experience enough that I bought my own hookah. It was a cheaper pipe from a local tobacco shop that I've seen listed as a mini obsidian on a few vendor sites. Sadly, a few months in and various things in life lead to it being put on the back burner.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago; I was proof reading a short story for a friend, and a scene involving a hookah reminded me of how relaxing and peaceful it was to smoke a nice bowl of shisha. I'm currently working on getting a little better pipe as the stem of my old one was damaged when I pulled it out of our storage closet, but I figured I could go ahead and start knocking some of the rust off my knowledge on the subject and get involved with the hookah community a bit. Looking forward to talking with everyone.

Sent by the power of Greyskull

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welcome! pretty much everyone around here has an opinion on pipes, so don't be afraid to ask. I'll be posting a nice nammor hookah in the next few days so keep an eye out too :)

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Thanks Doug, and actually, I do have a question, if you or someone else happens to have much exeperience with vortex bowls anyway.

I want to top my new hookah with one since I could get better results out of the one I had before than I could from the bowl that came with that hookah or the phunnel a friend let me borrow. I was wondering if there is any difference between the regular vortexes and the pyrex ones as far as heat management, because that seemed to be what always gave me trouble.

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Yeah, I have several vortexes that I use, but I find the main bowls I end up using are the Alien Mini Phunnel (you can get one from Hookah-Shisha.com) or a Social Smoke Egyptian HEMI (Social Smoke). The Mini Phunnel is excellent for Tangiers and wetter shishas (Fantasia out of those is excellent), where I find other brands of shisha, like Nakhla, Starbuzz, or AF, work better in an egyptian. Vortex bowls are very similar to phunnels, and are easier to pack, but kind of suck to keep clean - cleaning inside of them is possible but difficult.

If you do want to get a phunnel, I'd recommend the one from Sahara Smoke (saharasmoke.com - not the goliath), or the "no-name" one from hookah-shisha.com (it's a Sahara Smoke vortex clone - again, don't get the goliath, just the regular). The only issue I've found with my Sahara Smoke Vortex is that it doesn't work with the Kaloud Lotus (Kaloud Lotus Black) - the vortex in the center is too high - but I'm assuming you probably don't have one of those.

I would recommend keeping a few different kinds of bowls on hand. If you decide to try a brand that has less molassel or honey, Egyptians do work quite well. Much like the Vortex or the Phunnel, Egyptians do have a different packing technique, and you can get just as good of a smoke out of any of them if you know what you're doing. However, spend a little bit more and get quality bowls - an Egyptian with mis-aligned holes or a Phunnel with holes that are not in the right place end up making your smoke less enjoyable.

As far as glass, I don't like glass personally because I feel like it can easily make your hookah look more like a bong or paraphernalia device, but Paul (one of the main article writers here) loves the Crown Classic bowls. Someone else can chime in on glass. What I have heard (and I may be wrong on this) is that glass bowls heat up quicker, but also cool down a lot faster, and does require a different technique with coals. Paul does have a few good articles here about the merits:

Micro Crown Classic Glass Bowl - Hookah.org

Glass Acessories For Hookah - Hookah.org

Hope this helps! Message me if you have any further questions, or post something on one of the forums here. And again, welcome!

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Thanks, I will definitely keep those suggestions in mind. And yeah, I was actually starting on building a selection of bowls before because I had read a lot about the diffetent styles performing differently and certain shisha doing better with certain kinds. I had the mod style bowl that came with it (got knocked off a shelf and broke), a vortex (which I can't seem to find, but is probably down behind something in that closet), and was planning on getting a mini alien phunnel so I could play around with one more.

I just want to get a vortex first because it's familiar and I had better luck with the other one than I did with the other two bowls. I want the pyrex one partially because I know that stuff is pretty tough and partially for asthetics.

Sent by the power of Greyskull

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Sounds great Jeremy. I broke my alien mini 2 days after I bought mine, and fell in love with it so quickly, I had another on order within the hour. I'd highly recommend it, especially if you intend to try Tangiers eventually (and that's a whole other can of worms getting that prepped and packed properly because it's different than anything else). Let us all know how the pyrex works out for you.

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Hey Jeremy. I think a Pyrex bowl is a really good idea. Pyrex has a much better heating capacity than clay bowls (1500 degrees) and spreads head much more evenly over the whole bowl. I've never tried one myself, but my friend has, and he swears by them. One tip would be to ensure that you manage the heat and coals effectively, because you can burn the tobacco and ruin your smoke!

It's always worth getting more than one bowl, as 1. They are relatively cheap, and 2. They are too easy to break/lose/drop/throw at a buddy :) 3. It's always good to have options - E.g I have different ones depending on how long I want to smoke. Good luck my friend.

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Hey Jeremy,

Welcome to the forum. Do you have a budget in mind for your new hookah too?

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Thanks guys. Yeah, definitely looking into more bowls lol.

Hey Jeremy,

Welcome to the forum. Do you have a budget in mind for your new hookah too?

Kind of, but it isn't super strict. My main limitation was that I wanted something I could by in seperate pieces so that I could put something a little more personal together, and I didn't want to pay a triple digit price for any single piece. I also tend to lean more towards the modern style hookahs where appearance is concerned.

After looking around on here and a few review sites I decided to go for one of Sahara's Nar stems. I'm not sure of a base yet, but since I don't really care for the more extravagently decorated traditional still vases it'll probably be something plain or the base from one of those novelty-ish hookahs, like the dragon one on H-S. Then again, my selection all depends on how the bottom of the stem measures, since Sahara doesn't exactly have it in the product description and I couldn't find it in any reviews of the stem or the Sahara hookahs that use it.

I'll definitely be getting another Nammor hose to replace the one I sold, which will give me three hoses all together (other two are the basic black, wood handled, non-washable kind. No clue on brand). Not sure which style, but I'm thinking on the banded just because I like the look of it and it's still a Nammor under all that. And it looks like I'll be buying another bowl everytime I buy more shisha for a while, so....lol

Sent by the power of Greyskull

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The Sahara stems are really pretty, but I haven't heard any tremendous reviews on any of them. I would love to know how that goes.

I bought my base from Sahara on clearance - they have some of the best bases in the business, and if you can find the right size of one you like on clearance, you can save a ton. They're normally pretty expensive for a reason.

Just be sure when you buy other parts that you make sure they'll fit. Sahara's vases fit perfectly with KM, as long as they're deep enough, but if you opt for a different kind of vase, make sure the opening is wide enough or you'll be kicking yourself later.

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Yeah, I read a lot of reviews, and nothing really remarkable about them based on those, but they don't have a bunch of terrible reviews like the handful of other stems I could find in the price range.

It actually came in last night after I'd left for work. It definitely looks nice, and it feels a lot more solid than the cheap one from my previous hookah. I also like that I could get an adapter or two and turn it into a multihose.

I tried it with the base from the old one (about a 1.5" opening), and it was just a little loose. I bumped it and knocked it over and it didn't come out, but it did wiggle some. Think I'm going to try out some of those rubber band grommet things to see if they'd be an option before I decide on a base.

Sent by the power of Greyskull

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