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Different Kinds of Hookahs

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What is the difference between Egyption, Syrian, Modern etc. hookahs? Just the look, or does one smoke better than another?

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its mostly the look, but if you make exact same hookahs with the different types, they will smoke slightly different too...

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I have to admit, that's something I can't get a clear answer on from anywhere. I did have to look that up when I got a new head for my hookah recently. Here's what I found on hookahcompany.com:

The traditional Syrian hookahs have a different head configuration than the more common Egyptian head configuration. Essentially, the Syrian argile has a female component which attaches to a head with a male component, while the Egyptian argile has a male component that attaches with a head that has a female component. Syrian hookahs and Lebanese hookahs are very similar in that they both have the same head configuration and typically have more ornate designs than other hookahs. The quality and materials of Syrian hookahs varies from manufacturer to manufacturer.

Recently, more Syrian Hookahs are being made with the Egyptian head configuration due to its popularity. Each hookah below is specified with what type of head configuration it has.

But, Nima, you said something about the look, and I heard something else about that, too. What is that specifically?

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Guest jayson

Sorry to bring up an old post, but I was curious about this myself before I purchased my own hookah. I ended up asking my friend who is from Syria himself.

According to him, the Syrian hookahs are better (not shocked at his assessment).

But boastful Syrian nationalism aside, the Syrian and Egyptian hookahs have two different general styles. If you notice, Egyptian hookahs tend to be more "stout". They have a thicker and shorter shafts, while Syrian hookahs come off as much more slim and tall. Modern hookahs take no particular style from either category and are sometimes more works of art than they are smoking apparatuses.

The bigger difference is in hose selection. Syrian hookahs now often come with the auto-seal bearing system in the hose connection. Egyptian hookahs do not have this auto-seal, which forces you to use your thumb to cover the hose instead. Also, newer Egyptian hookahs come with the cobra mouthpiece while Syrian hookahs usually come with a carved wooden handle/metal bit.

One more difference, and this is slight and varies from manufacturer, but Egyptian hookahs tend to have a lower profile tray compared to Syrian hookahs.

But most importantly... as for the smoke. Unless you get a "chiller" Syrian version (a hookah with an ice bucket under the bowl and tray), there is no difference in the quality of smoke that you will be puffing away on, assuming you have two hookahs of the same height and accessories.

For what it's worth... which probably isn't much. But that's my two cents. :)

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Guest trapman

iv heard that the bigger they are the get more smoke and they are just better unless it is a modern hookah, in that case it is supposed to be just as good if it is small. The place i got it from realy wasnt that clear on it

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I've actually heard that smaller hookahs emit a thicker smoke because there is no room in the glass for it to expand. I have both, but I've never really examined the smoke output. I'll have to try that out.

iv heard that the bigger they are the get more smoke and they are just better unless it is a modern hookah, in that case it is supposed to be just as good if it is small. The place i got it from realy wasnt that clear on it

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Guest socialsmoke

The main differences are:

Modern Hookahs (Chinese) Vs Traditional (Syrian/Egyptian)

Modern Hookahs tend to be:

Mass produced/machine made - therefore more consistent in quality

Break apart/screw together

They tend to have

Open hose port chamber so clearing the base and washing the stem is a little harder.

Traditional Hookahs tend to be:

Hand made or at least hand finished - so quality can vary and each piece will be unique.

One piece

They tend to have

Individual hose connector tube per hose port, so clearing the base of smoke and washing the stem is easier.

Traditional hookahs tend to be longer lasting in heavy duty use such as lounge use.

The main difference between most Egyptians and Syrians tend to be manufacturing technique and material types. Egyptians are usually made from hand spun metal parts assembled on the down stem while Syrians are usually made from solid pieces of brass carved into shapes and then assembled on the downstem.

There are some solid brass Egyptians and I have seen spun metal Syrians, but they are not as plentiful.

To me the main thing that makes one hookah smoke better than another is the diameter of the downstem, individual hose connector tubes with good flow, a good bowl and a good hose. I like a hookah with stainless steel tubing to reduce the risk of rust or corrosion make the hookah easier to clean. To me the origins or styles of the hookah makes little to no difference as does the size.

These are my opinions only, by no means is this a statement of fact and there are so many manufacturers out there of hookahs that no statement will be correct for all.

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Guest SmokeKagu

This is just from my personal experience. I only have egyptian hookahs but it really does seem like the smaller hookahs emit more/thicker smoke. For instance I have this huge one which fits four hoses at once and the smoke is often thin. It's just fun to use at parties cuz it lights up :P. But my smaller one gives off a lot more. So when I'm alone I'm always using my smallest.

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Guest trapman

yea, moderns may be made of weird metal but they smoke good

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Smaller bases give the smoke less room to expand, so you get all the compact smoke in your lungs.

Multiple-hose hookahs only work when everyone is covering up the end of the hose with his/her thumb, which obviously isn't possible for every second of the smoke session. Especially at parties where everyone may or may not be intoxicated, hah.

This is just from my personal experience. I only have egyptian hookahs but it really does seem like the smaller hookahs emit more/thicker smoke. For instance I have this huge one which fits four hoses at once and the smoke is often thin. It's just fun to use at parties cuz it lights up :P. But my smaller one gives off a lot more. So when I'm alone I'm always using my smallest.

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Thanks Ali.

Yeah, one of my favorite hookahs is really getting corroded because it's not stainless steel, and it's starting to really piss me off. But I like a hookah that is really heavy, and some of the stainless steel ones I've used or considered buying have had really light stems that just don't do it for me.

The main differences are:

Modern Hookahs (Chinese) Vs Traditional (Syrian/Egyptian)

Modern Hookahs tend to be:

Mass produced/machine made - therefore more consistent in quality

Break apart/screw together

They tend to have

Open hose port chamber so clearing the base and washing the stem is a little harder.

Traditional Hookahs tend to be:

Hand made or at least hand finished - so quality can vary and each piece will be unique.

One piece

They tend to have

Individual hose connector tube per hose port, so clearing the base of smoke and washing the stem is easier.

Traditional hookahs tend to be longer lasting in heavy duty use such as lounge use.

The main difference between most Egyptians and Syrians tend to be manufacturing technique and material types. Egyptians are usually made from hand spun metal parts assembled on the down stem while Syrians are usually made from solid pieces of brass carved into shapes and then assembled on the downstem.

There are some solid brass Egyptians and I have seen spun metal Syrians, but they are not as plentiful.

To me the main thing that makes one hookah smoke better than another is the diameter of the downstem, individual hose connector tubes with good flow, a good bowl and a good hose. I like a hookah with stainless steel tubing to reduce the risk of rust or corrosion make the hookah easier to clean. To me the origins or styles of the hookah makes little to no difference as does the size.

These are my opinions only, by no means is this a statement of fact and there are so many manufacturers out there of hookahs that no statement will be correct for all.

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Guest trapman

yea, gotta have the perfect hookah

i love mine, but it is currently being held together by tin foil and duck tape

i just dont want it to go

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Guest jayson
Multiple-hose hookahs only work when everyone is covering up the end of the hose with his/her thumb, which obviously isn't possible for every second of the smoke session. Especially at parties where everyone may or may not be intoxicated, hah.

Unless you have the ball bearing system! Which is a blessing by the way. Thank you Mya!

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True true. That's what I need.

Unless you have the ball bearing system! Which is a blessing by the way. Thank you Mya!

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Unless you have the ball bearing system! Which is a blessing by the way. Thank you Mya!

It's basically the coolest thing ever. I love it.

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Guest redjako
Smaller bases give the smoke less room to expand, so you get all the compact smoke in your lungs.

Multiple-hose hookahs only work when everyone is covering up the end of the hose with his/her thumb, which obviously isn't possible for every second of the smoke session. Especially at parties where everyone may or may not be intoxicated, hah.

Haha, I just got This hookah: Its a 4-1/2 foot monstrosity Egyptian model with four hoses...the hose nozzles are welded, so I can't (?) add ball-bearing screw on hose nozzles.

Anything else to do about this? I'd really like to get some bearings on the beast, as the quote above is really true...you suck a LOT of air from other hoses, and the smoke gets inconsistent.

Thanks!

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Guest Apronym

I've never tried this but in theory it should work. If you're steady with a drill try drilling a hole through both sides of the nozzle. Use a tap and die to thread it and then find a screw the correct diameter and install it in the hole you just made. Put a ball bearing or air soft pellet behind the screw and you've just made an auto seal valve almost identical to those from the factory.

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