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 Loose stem

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idbowman

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Age : 36
Location : Painesville, OH
Registration date : 2011-12-19

PostSubject: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:29 pm

How can one fix a very loose stem (as in, the shank/bowl barely stay attached)? More importantly, how can one do with without sending it away and/or spending a lot of money to do it (time is fine...money, not so much).

Here's my situation. The first pipe I ever bought is a right mess. It seemed great at the time...a nice, shiny, lacquered-to-hell pipe sitting in a basket for under $25? What a steal! I don't really smoke it much anymore, considering it smokes rocket-hot no matter what, is a smaller bowl than I prefer, and just isn't a pleasant smoke compared to my usual rotation. Still, it'd be nice to load up once in a while for nostalgia's sake. I remember that when I stopped smoking it it was becoming loose...I'd heard that not smoking a pipe for long enough causes it to dry and shrink and that smoking it regularly will allow it to re-swell to its usual fit. So I've tried smoking it over the past few months, and no dice (not surprising since it was going loose even back when I was using it regularly).



So...moral of the story: The pipe isn't worth a whole lot of expense to tighten up. If it can be done cheaply and simply, I'd like to have a go at it just to keep it around. If not, I'd just as soon look at it on the pipe rack when I'm feeling nostalgic. Thoughts?
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rippledfingers

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Location : Scranton, Pa.
Registration date : 2012-01-19

PostSubject: Re: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:58 pm

http://www.ehow.com/how_8420997_fix-loose-pipe-stems.html
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idbowman

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Age : 36
Location : Painesville, OH
Registration date : 2011-12-19

PostSubject: Re: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:13 pm

Yeah, I saw that...have you (or anyone else) done that before? Does that work, or does the tenon shrink right back down to size when it cools?
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dshpipes

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Age : 34
Location : Durham, NC
Registration date : 2011-03-06

PostSubject: Re: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:28 pm

This may work, but I personally have never tried it. The best way, IMO, to tighten up the tenon to mortise fit is to warm the tenon with a flame from a lighter or candle, rotating the tenon so it is heated evenly, then take something as wide as the airway in the tenon or only slightly wider (we're talking nanometers), and insert this into the tenon to expand it. Then try fitting it into the mortise. If the fit is then a little too tight, lubricate the mortise with a #2 lead pencil. If the fit is still too tight, warm the tenon so that it regains its original shape and repeat with something a little smaller.

Be sure to let the tenon cool to room temperature after each time you heat it before reinserting it into your pipe. Sometimes, just heating the tenon and letting it cool to room temperature will do the trick. It just depends on how loose the stem is.

I've also heard of people boiling distilled water, then putting the hot water into a cup over which you can dangle the mortise end of the pipe. This should swell the wood to create a tighter fit. Only problem here is, if you aren't smoking the pipe regularly, the wood will shrink again as it dries.

I hope this is helpful. Smile
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stan41



Age : 77
Location : Central Texas
Registration date : 2009-02-16

PostSubject: Re: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 6:03 pm

I fixed one this way: Got a pan of water boiling. Inserted a pipe cleaner in the button end of the stem and dangled the tenon in the water for about 10 seconds. I quickly pressed down the end of the stem on the cabinet top, then allowed it to cool. Worked perfectly and is still working 3 years later.
Stan
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dshpipes

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Age : 34
Location : Durham, NC
Registration date : 2011-03-06

PostSubject: Re: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 6:06 pm

stan41 wrote:
I fixed one this way: Got a pan of water boiling. Inserted a pipe cleaner in the button end of the stem and dangled the tenon in the water for about 10 seconds. I quickly pressed down the end of the stem on the cabinet top, then allowed it to cool. Worked perfectly and is still working 3 years later.
Stan

Forgot about this. +1
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monbla256

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Age : 72
Location : DFW Metroplex, Texas
Registration date : 2012-01-15

PostSubject: Re: Loose stem   Fri Jan 27, 2012 9:00 pm

Electricians tape is your friend Razz It comes in black which matches the stem and is shiny or you could try some of the chrome type to give it a high end look Razz Really though, I had an old Kaywoodie I used for several years when I would smoke at my barn around my horses and it really work out well Razz
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