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 Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?

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AJ

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Age : 68
Location : East of the Rocky Mountains
Registration date : 2012-03-18

PostSubject: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:34 pm

Can someone please tell me why one I suppose to break a new pipe in by beginning with a quarter filled bowl followed by a half filled and then a three quarter filled bowl before finally smoking a fully filled bowl? Early in my smoking career I followed the procedure with the first two pipes I bought. Not understanding why I was supposed to do this I gave up the practice. From then to now whenever I get a new pipe I fill it up with either a straight Virginia or a Burley blend and smoke it as though it had been smoked many times. I have over a hundred pipes in my collection that I bought new and except for the first two all got this treatment. I've never had one to crack, have a burn through, or have any other damage that I can detect. Maybe for a new Meer it would make since to start slowly and I'm not so sure about that. So somebody please tell me why starting with a partially filled bowl is the way to go. Smile

AJ
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Brewdude

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Age : 64
Location : Near the Emerald city
Registration date : 2011-05-04

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:07 pm

Always used full bowls myself with one exception, and had nothing but satisfactory results. And I have been using PA for the initial bowls. Just works for me.

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Cheers,

RR
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Idlefellow

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Location : The Kansas Prairie
Registration date : 2009-02-24

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:18 pm

I think the idea is to build a little cake in the bottom in the bottom of the bowl. Plus, wood is a natural material and it probably doesn't hurt to gradually get it used to the heat.
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Ozark Wizard

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Age : 53
Location : Mark Twain National Forest, MO
Registration date : 2014-10-11

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:30 pm

I have noticed that "shortloading" the first few bowls during break in helps even out the initial cake. A lot of times though I just scoop the first few bowls to the top and burn very aerated full bowls, with more relights than usual, so as to make sure the bowl doesn't heat up too much. I guess it just depends on each person's preferences. I know with taller bowls I'm not inclined to only half load, I'd rather the rim stay unscorched for as long as possible, so I'll just gravity feed those, but to the top.
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Cartaphilus

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Age : 63
Location : East Texas
Registration date : 2011-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Mon Jul 25, 2016 10:54 pm

From what I understand it is to temper the chamber so to speak. I myself have never really done this cause I never fill a bowl completely anyway but, I can see why it might be good for beginners that puff way too much in the beginning.
Whether it works or not, I haven't a clue but, sometimes it's better to be safe then sorry. Wink
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mark
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Registration date : 2008-07-02

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:24 am

HOW DARE YOU,,,you're questioning time honored tradition??? Make no mistake mister, this is going on your permanent record !!!

I guess it goes along with a few other ideas like storing your pipe upside down at an eightyfour degree angle with a fluffy tapered pipecleaner inserted after 6 PM on even days after smoking blends containing no cavendish.

I'm with you AJ, stuff and puff.

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puros_bran
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Location : Brandenburg, Ky
Registration date : 2007-12-10

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:40 am

Ever notice how wet the bottom of a pipe gets?
The three part break in is designed to build a cake, when you smoke from top to bottom there is considerable moisture to deal with, it's just a natural component of combustion. Moisture is kinda counter productive when trying to build a cake. So you end up relighting the bottom 1/3-1/4 bowl multiple times with no cake. Recipe for burnout. It also helps to prevent moisture issues in the future... Got a pipe with serious swamp bottom? Ream it out and start over, this time using the three part method. Bet it helps.

To quote Yak as he quoted whoever: The old cliche are old cliche for a reason.
If you are against the grain when it comes to an idea don't just naturally assume that the knowledge base is wrong.
Or as I tell my learner permit daughter, Just because you got away with that silliness this time doesn't mean you'll be so lucky next time.

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puros_bran
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Location : Brandenburg, Ky
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PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:45 am

Also: Guys doing it wrong and blaming the pipe are the reason pipe manufacturers started the whole pre-carbon bowl deal. They found that easier to do that putting a warning label on pipes. Thanks guys, you were slick enough to force us to the lowest common denominator. It is appreciated. And while I'm typing, don't drink gasoline while smoking, and quit playing your walk man when you are making water babies, Rosie don't care because hands don't have ears...

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ftrplt

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Age : 70
Location : Split between Raleigh, NC and OKC, OK
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PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:40 pm

For pipers who don't smoke their 'baccy all the way to the bottom, the 3-part helps them get an even cake in the bowl. Eons ago when I worked in a pipe shop, this is one of the methods we presented to customers just beginning their journey into pipes and tobacco. I've never done it; but I smoke the entire bowl!! cheers FTRPLT
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AJ

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Age : 68
Location : East of the Rocky Mountains
Registration date : 2012-03-18

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 3:28 pm

puros_bran wrote:
Ever notice how wet the bottom of a pipe gets?  
The three part break in is designed to build a cake, when you smoke from top to bottom there is considerable moisture to deal with, it's just a natural component of combustion.  Moisture is kinda counter productive when trying to build a cake.  So you end up relighting the bottom 1/3-1/4 bowl multiple times with no cake. Recipe for burnout. It also helps to prevent moisture issues in the future... Got a pipe with serious swamp bottom? Ream it out and start over, this time using the three part method. Bet it helps.  

To quote Yak as he quoted whoever: The old cliche are old cliche for a reason.
If you are against the grain when it comes to an idea don't just naturally assume that the knowledge base is wrong.  
Or as I tell my learner permit daughter, Just because you got away with that silliness this time doesn't mean you'll be so lucky next time.

In theory yes, in reality no. The fact remains that none of my pipes have suffered any signs of burn through, burn out, and none have swamp bottoms unless I smoke a tobacco that was overly moist in the beginning. I have some pipes that get smoked repeatedly through the week and some go several months before I smoke them again. However the pipes I smoke on a regular basis have cake in the bottom as well as along the wall almost to the upper rim. Now unless I'm the luckiest man in the world blessed by some unknown and unseen miracle worker this shouldn't be the reality that I'm living with. I'm not opposed to any that want to break in a new pipe using the three step method but what I've experienced tends to show it isn't necessary. Smile

AJ
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puros_bran
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Location : Brandenburg, Ky
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PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 6:04 pm

Until it is...

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monbla256

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Age : 71
Location : DFW Metroplex, Texas
Registration date : 2012-01-15

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 7:47 pm

When I started over 40 years ago I also did the step method till I met an old codger piper who showed me how to fill 'em up and just smoke 'em nice and easy the first few times. If a full bowl is smoked ALL the way down to ash, it builds a cake all the way just fine !! Just take your time go slowly, and re-light, re-light as needed !! Twisted Evil Twisted Evil
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AJ

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Age : 68
Location : East of the Rocky Mountains
Registration date : 2012-03-18

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 7:54 pm

monbla256 wrote:
When I started over 40 years ago I also did the step method till I met an old codger piper who showed me how to fill 'em up and just smoke 'em nice and easy the first few times. If a full bowl is smoked ALL the way down to ash, it builds a cake all the way just fine !! Just take your time go slowly, and re-light, re-light as needed !! Twisted Evil Twisted Evil

Exactly! Smile

AJ
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Ozark Wizard

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Age : 53
Location : Mark Twain National Forest, MO
Registration date : 2014-10-11

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Tue Jul 26, 2016 9:08 pm

ajn27511 wrote:
monbla256 wrote:
When I started over 40 years ago I also did the step method till I met an old codger piper who showed me how to fill 'em up and just smoke 'em nice and easy the first few times. If a full bowl is smoked ALL the way down to ash, it builds a cake all the way just fine !! Just take your time go slowly, and re-light, re-light as needed !! Twisted Evil Twisted Evil

Exactly! Smile

AJ

Indeed.....
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KevinM



Age : 74
Location : Connecticut
Registration date : 2012-02-26

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Wed Jul 27, 2016 12:31 am

Omonbla256 wrote:
When I started over 40 years ago I also did the step method till I met an old codger piper who showed me how to fill 'em up and just smoke 'em nice and easy the first few times. If a full bowl is smoked ALL the way down to ash, it builds a cake all the way just fine !! Just take your time go slowly, and re-light, re-light as needed !! Twisted Evil Twisted Evil
Me three, if I counted right. Also, pack it looser than usual.

I looked at the "How to smoke a pipe properly" card that came with a new Savinelli, and it was specific about proper packing and pacing. But it was silent on the step method of break in. Interesting omission.

I then consulted George Herment's The Pipe. In a chapter titled "Seasoning," Herment discusses different "pre-ignition" steps that smokers use to get a new pipe ready for the flame. Then he discusses the step method, acknowledging it may be beyond the patience of many pipers. He then says, "... the top of the bowl always seasons and chars sooner than the bottom by virtue of the more violent burning produced by lighting the pipe." So it seems that homogeneity was the rationale for the step method. 

When I was an unskilled newcomer to pipe smoking, afflicted by too firm packing and multiple relights, my pipes developed a cake that was much thicker at the top of the bowl and almost non-existent at the bottom. Now, with looser packing and slower smokes, I rarely need more than one or two relights, those coming toward the end of the bowl. Result: no more cake build up at top.

So I guess that was the rationale for the step method. Maybe it was intended for vigorously puffing newbies and clenchers who smoke while working and have trouble smoking at a measured pace.
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Dottie Warden

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Age : 59
Location : Mexico City
Registration date : 2014-04-19

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Sun Aug 28, 2016 10:46 am

The codgers around here must get a real kick as we've transformed the simple art of pipe smoking into pure science.

At least it gives us plenty to talk about!
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MisterE
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Location : Mexico City
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PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Sun Aug 28, 2016 11:40 am

I've done the step method and it does work. It seems a little harder to get a good cake going on wider bowls, and the step method is especially good for that. The only problem is that smoking the pipe that way feels more like a homework assignment than enjoyable. These days i take the Ken Collins approach: just smoke the new out of it.

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AJ

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Age : 68
Location : East of the Rocky Mountains
Registration date : 2012-03-18

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:21 pm

MisterE wrote:
I've done the step method and it does work. It seems a little harder to get a good cake going on wider bowls, and the step method is especially good for that. The only problem is that smoking the pipe that way feels more like a homework assignment than enjoyable. These days i take the Ken Collins approach: just smoke the new out of it.

Very sensible. Your logic is flawless. Smile

AJ
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puros_bran
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PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Sun Aug 28, 2016 3:31 pm

The thing is Kens pipes were well broken in before he started using this method. Then again Kens pipes were carved by one of Noah's boys after the flood.. had to do something with all that wood, right. Wink

It's funny you brought him up.. Ken is one of my heros, the only other guy that can stand toe to toe with him is TJ and I was talking about TJ when you typed this.

I imagine on BoB 'Heaven Edition' TJ is giving Ken a stearn lecture on Reaganomics this morning and Ken is just puffing and occasionally throwing in one of those One Word post that makes you stop and think. Lol. I truly loved both of those men.

Pacem en puffing Cappo do tutti cappo.

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Ozark Wizard

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Age : 53
Location : Mark Twain National Forest, MO
Registration date : 2014-10-11

PostSubject: Re: Can Someone Please Tell Me Why?   Sun Aug 28, 2016 3:44 pm

Dottie Warden wrote:
The codgers around here must get a real kick as we've transformed the simple art of pipe smoking into pure science.

At least it gives us plenty to talk about!

Art, science, theology. Minutia. Same difference. No worries!
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