Why Is Borosilicate Glass Used for Smoking Pipes (and What Is It?)

To many who smoke dry herbs and tobacco, their glass pipes are representations of their personalities and artistic tastes. That’s why so many beautiful, handmade spoon pipes and blown heady glass specimens are available on the market.

But let’s not forget that these are also tools that have a job to do. A glass smoking pipe really isn’t worth very much if all you can do is look at it. Enthusiasts use these to smoke, remember.

So let’s take a high-level view of what type of glass is typically used to make glass smoking pipes – which is a specific type of glass known as borosilicate or borosilicate glass.

Borosilicate glass is made with silica sand, soda ash, alumina, and boric oxide. It was first developed in the 1800s by a German glassmaker named Otto Schott and became popular in the early 1900s for use in cookware. You may recognize the name Pyrex – which products are made from borosilicate glass.

The addition of boric oxide in the glass mixture gives a borosilicate glass a number of benefits for smokers that incidentally also make it useful in the creation of cookware.

Arguably the greatest benefit of borosilicate glass (for both smokers and cooks) is that it has a very low coefficient of thermal expansion. This means the addition of loss of heat does not dramatically change the volume of glass, which makes it less resistant to crazing, cracking, or shattering. Thermal shock can do that to lower grades of glass such as soda-lime glass, but borosilicate glass is much tougher and more resilient to changes in temperature – even rapid changes.

This resistance to shifts in temperature is highly valuable to those who smoke from borosilicate glass pipes, as the application of a flame to a bowl can cause it to heat up – and lose heat – very rapidly. But, as you know, smoking pipes are not likely to crack or shatter when lighting them up.

Borosilicate glass, though highly resistant to rapid changes in temperature, offers a number of other benefits as well. It is also a highly durable, physically strong glass. It is substantially stronger than soda-lime glass which is commonly used to make windows, jars, bottles, and other glassware.

In addition to being physically tough and having a lower coefficient of thermal expansion, borosilicate glass is unlikely to shatter. That doesn’t mean it won’t break. It can, and it does, but when it does, it’s more likely to crack, chip, or break in two than it is to explode into a million tiny razor-sharp shards – as you might expect from a bottle or a window.

Borosilicate glass also has a naturally smooth, anti-stick, non-porous surface. This makes it possible to produce very clear glass that is also easy to clean – another benefit when making a glass pipe.

Where Can I Buy a Glass Pipe Near Me?
All of these factors come together to make borosilicate glass the premier glass for producing smoking pipes – so that’s one of the things you should look for.

And if you are interested in a place where you can buy a glass pipe near you, we have some good news – if you’re in South Florida. Smokers in the area aren’t too far from The Hip Cat Smoke Shop’s two locations in Ft. Lauderdale and Pompano Beach.

The Hip Cat Smoke Shop’s two locations feature countless glass hand pipes, dab rigs, water pipes, spoon pipes, chillums, one-hitters, and so much more. You can take a look at their selection in their online headshop, TheHipCatSmokeShop.com.

But if you’re in their area, a visit is in order. Their shop supports local artists and features many fine examples of hand-blown glass in their impressive selection – make sure to check them out today!

For more information about Glass Smoke Shop and Glass Head Shop Please visit : The Hip Cat Smoke Shop.

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