Since starting Puffco almost a decade ago, Roger Volodarsky and his team have transformed the company into a lifestyle brand with a thriving community. If you gathered together all the Puffco owners, and indeed that’s what their yearly Puffcon is all about, you’d have the residents of a decent-sized city. Their newest product, Proxy, promises to bring a population boom by creating the easiest experience for people looking to discover the joy of smoking hash.

At first glance, a normal pipe, this electronic heating chamber (called an ‘atomizer’), base, and glass piece combine to create an experience Volodarsky describes as a “game-changer for hash across the world.”

We thought we’d give a hands-on with the unit, and answer five of the most frequently asked questions, including reasons to buy one, whether you’re a longtime listener or first-time caller.

Accept no substitutes: The new Puffco Proxy 'bucket' fits into a glass 'Sherlock' pipe. But that's just the beginning.
Accept no substitutes: The new Puffco Proxy ‘bucket’ fits into a glass ‘Sherlock’ pipe. But that’s just the beginning.

The Proxy journey started as an idea to design and create an atomizer that would fit inside a standard piece of hash vaping glassware, called a banger. However, the heavy, early prototypes tipped over a standard hash water pipe, called a dab rig. Puffco chief technology officer Avi Bajpai’s work on decreasing the tipping issue led to a device far more modular.

You can put this new atomizer in a hash pipe, bubbler, or dab rig, uniting heady collectors, newbies, and hash enthusiasts under a single banner. In Volodarsky’s words, Proxy has “the ability to contextualize what’s so special about the hash and glass scene, [even] to people very far away from that experience.”

Like the best-selling Puffco Peak, Proxy runs at four heat settings: blue (505°F), green (520°), red (545°), and white (560°). You’ll get the best experience from a slow, measured draw, and to be honest, you get pretty good-sized hits even starting at the lowest temp. There’s also a lock function to confuse small hands and security guards. 

The slow, sipping inhale—so natural to a pipe—is a big part of what makes the unit instantly comfortable sitting in your hand all day. These measured, flavor-heavy puffs make Proxy easy to smoke regardless of the time, allowing you to try little tastes throughout the day without overpowering yourself. And like Wookerson always says, you can’t smoke hash all day unless you start in the morning.

After spending time with this at the ready, I can say Proxy offers an experience you haven’t already had with the Peak. Though it produces smaller hits, there’s an undeniably classy feeling when putting a pipe to your lips. Combine this with the fact that, unlike its sister models, the simple, bucket-like unit can morph into infinite forms, giving users and glassblowers the chance to customize their experience in a way that speaks to them (the Gandalf brigade is stoked). 

So why is Proxy not a bubbler out of the box? Well, dry hits are terpier. If you’ve ever forgotten to put water in your Peak, you’ve discovered the flavor benefits of dry hits. While a little powerful, there’s a noticeably stronger and more complex flavor. You can already find a whole section of dry tops available to help the Peak maximize terp exposure. But it’s not just tasty hits of rosins and resins that Proxy offers. Full-melt water hash fans have a new toy. 

Volodarsky proudly stated, “There is no better system period, including quartz, to consume water hash than this device.”

“There is no better system period, including quartz, to consume water hash than this device.”

Roger Volodarsky, Founder & CEO, Puffco

With Proxy, users also have the option to vaporize not just five or six-star hash but even the bottom-of-the-shoe variety. Early tester Wooksauce Winery discovered even spliff hash vaporizes in the new atomizer. I tried running five-star, two-star, and even finger hash through the Proxy and got rich hits that surprised the room. Oh my lord. Each time a thick blanket of dark char remained. The trick? Grab your Puffco Hot Knife and gather the char like a wooly willy. The Proxy performed impressively on stuff that you’d barely even consider as melt.

The Puffco Proxy price and is it worth it?

At $299, the Puffco Proxy is worth the price, yes. For those not fully on the Puffco train, this delivers the easiest way I’ve ever seen to start enjoying concentrates. Normal dab rigs can sketch people out. The Puffco Peak entices, and the Proxy outright enthralls. For fans of the brand, Proxy simplifies on the Peak, provides a different degree of flavor, and also opens the door to a whole new world of customization. Grip it and rip it.

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Does Puffco Proxy beat my Peak or my Plus?

No, it’s more like the completion of a trilogy—the three complement each other. Puffco knows hash fandom spans many different lifestyles. Each product fits a different persona.

  • Puffco Plus vape pen—the slim, discreet one-hitter. Ultra-lightweight and portable. Sneak hits in the movies.
  • Puffco Proxy—the classic smoker, offering more hits, temp settings, and modular customization. Flex at the sesh.
  • The Puffco Peak Pro—the full G6 airplane. A bigger chamber, water-filtration, longer battery life, and Bluetooth temperature controls for avid dabbers. Your dab bar centerpiece.
I got my hash pipe: the portable, modular, Puffco Proxy (center). The Plus and Peak Pro flanking. (Matt Jackson for Leafly)
I got my hash pipe: The portable, modular, Puffco Proxy (center). The Plus and Peak Pro flank. (Matt Jackson for Leafly)

Is Puffco Proxy easy to clean?

Volodarsky went on record proclaiming Proxy “the easiest to clean product we’ve ever made.” Unlike the intricate swabbing and soaking rituals Peak Pro owners are used to, you’ll mostly need a pack of good alcohol wipes to towel down the unit between heavy sessions. In putting that to the test, I went hard for three straight days, then removed the base and atomizer to find I barely needed to use a whole wipe. For deeper cleans you can pop out the atomizer and soak it in alcohol overnight. Proxy cleans up so easily, and tucks away so nicely—it will quickly become your go-to piece for traveling.

Puffco Proxy bucket and atomizer takes a licking, keeps on ripping. (Matt Jackson for leafly)
Puffco Proxy bucket and atomizer takes a licking, keeps on ripping. (Matt Jackson for leafly)

Does it get hot?

As far as the stock setup, even nine back-to-back hits never got the glass too hot to handle, more like when you leave your pipe in the car on a hot day. The top of the unit does get hot as the session hits dab number three and especially so if you go above the blue setting. You’ll feel a natural urge to rest your finger on the carb cap and play with the airflow but STOP. Singed fingers await.

Puffco Proxy battery life?

On average, the Proxy can go between 13 and 15 cycles before dying. Of course, the final number will depend on what temperature setting you prefer. I found I ran out of juice trying to make it through an entire day but, like other Puffco products, they’ve included passthrough charging so if you head out, bring a battery backup (USB-C; 2.4amp output like official Puffco chargers).

Puffco Proxy glass release dates?

Puffco scheduled the first glass competition for July/August, as well as the release of accessories such as the travel pack, rotating carb cap, and bubbler attachment. Take out the bucket, pop in the flower top accessory on any Proxy glass piece, and boom you’re combusting flower. The Proxy era in functional glass art has arrived.

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Matt Jackson

Writer and designer Matt Jackson started in the California cannabis industry in 2004. Jackson holds a BA in Creative Writing from Humboldt State University. His work has appeared in Leaf Magazine, SF Station, Skunk Magazine, and the North Coast Journal.

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