Do You Need a Dugout for a One Hitter?
One hitters can certainly be used without a dugout. You can prep your smoke and keep it in a container of some sort instead. You could also load it directly from your grinder right after you grind it. Having one does make using your one hitter an easier experience though.
It keeps your pipe and herb together in one place and provides some discretion, as smaller portable dugouts can easily be hidden in a pocket or purse.
Do Dugouts Come with a One Hitter?
While there are certainly exceptions to the rule, in nearly every case, your dugout will come with a one hitter. It has become incredibly rare to see these for sale without a bat or one hitter.
Some of the best ones out there, like the All-in-One Waterproof Smoking Dugout from Lighterpick, have all of this and more. The Lighterpick not only includes a one hitter, but it has plenty of space for your herb, ground or not, as well as a lighter, and more.
What Is a One Hitter Dugout Stash Box?
A stash box is part of the one hitter dugout design. In each one, there will be multiple compartments. This is because they are smoking kits designed for smoking discretion and portability and have been around for many decades. They are also compact enough to fit in your pocket. They can be made of many different materials, with artfully designed wooden dugouts like the SMOKEA® Wood Twist Top Dugout being the most popular and the most commonly seen.
There are also options made out of metal and plastic. Many are also designed to have some degree of stealth or misdirection associated with them, to provide even more discretion. Twenty years ago, dugouts looked like beepers and cigarette boxes. As manufacturing abilities have grown, the ability to make them resemble just about anything other than a stash box is common.
The stash box is going to be one of the larger compartments. Some dugouts will have multiple compartments, and the stash box will always be the largest one. This is because, in many larger dugouts, there will be bat storage, the actual dugout, and additional space for more herb, either ground or unground. Designs like this allow the user to clear it out and then mill some of the remaining herb in their stash box to refill them.
How Dugouts Work
Whether you pre-grind your herb or not is completely up to you. Lots of folks like to grind it ahead of time so that the bowls are packed with something that’s evenly ground, as this makes their bowl burn more evenly.
This step isn’t necessary, though. Some people just put their herb in it as-is, since the motion of packing your hitter will break up what’s in your hitter box.
Load the Device
One of the challenges to using dugouts is that the opening for the herb tends to be pretty small. If you don’t want to use your fingers to fill it pinch by pinch, you can funnel it into the chamber using a piece of paper.
Holding your dugout over another piece of paper or a rolling tray lets you catch any spills, which you can either pour into it or back into your stash.
Pack Your One Hitter Correctly
Understandably, some think that packing one hitter pipes are as simple as pressing it into the smoking material, but that’s just a recipe for compressing the herb in the bottom of the dugout. Gently press the hitter into the herb and twist, which packs the bowl without mashing the rest of the herb into the chamber.
If you end up with an herb that's stuck in the bottom, you can use a poke to loosen it up.
As you use your dugout more and more, you’ll need to take some time to clean it up so that it keeps working well for you. Most dugouts are made from natural materials, with wood being the most common type. Because of this, you don’t want to use chemical cleaners, since they can soak into the porous surface, and you don’t want that to transfer to anything you’re going to be ingesting. A wooden hitter box can even be treated with natural wood oils, as long as they are food safe.
To reduce the funk that can build up over time, it’s best to store the one hitter bowl side up. This prevents ash and resin from falling out and settling into the bottom of the storage chamber, which can impact how well the spring works for you.
To keep your dugout fresh you can wipe it down with a cotton swab to dust off any particles before things start to get too sticky. If a dry cotton swab isn’t enough, you can dip it in some hot water and use some old-fashioned elbow grease to clean up and build up.
Tips for a Good One Hitter Dugout Experience
Most people are used to pipes, where a chunk of herb won’t stop the whole smoke session. One hitter pipes are different and need a finely ground consistency to the herb. This will help ensure that you can always draw on the one hitter once it’s packed.
Don’t Overdo It
Lots of people want to pack their dugouts as full as possible, so they can go longer between refills. The biggest downside to this is that when you go to pack your bat, you’ll almost always lose some herb if it’s packed to the brim. Leave some room in your dugout for a little twist and wiggle.
Look out for flying bats. Most dugouts have a spring-loaded bat chamber, and opening it too quickly can see the bat shoot right out of it and onto the ground. This is bad news for ceramic bats, and while metal can handle it, it can still diminish the appearance.
Clean Your Pipes
Since your bat will constantly be burning finely ground herb, there is undoubtedly going to be some crud building up inside. Keep it clean, because they can clog up and become unusable quickly.