Many specialized solutions exist for cleaning your rig without a bong cleaning kit:
- Isopropyl alcohol with 91-99% alcohol content seems to work best for cleaning even the dirtiest bongs (with the 99% concentration working best).
- Simply add an abrasive, such as salt, and shake the bong with isopropyl/salt solution until clean, empty and rinse the bong. (In case of a pipe, some find it easier to fill a ziplock bag full of isopropyl alcohol to let soak for ~3 hours.)
- An extra trick that works well is warming the isopropyl alcohol in a microwaveable separate container. The warm isopropyl alcohol tends to take the bong grime right out.
- Take care to rinse the bong/pipe until all chemical sents are gone. It is not safe to smoke out the bong until the smell of all chemical residue is gone. This might take multiple washes.
- Consider investing in a good ash catcher. An ash catcher traps particulates before they enter the bong, and is an easy upgrade!