Just a quick PSA about the TSA: they suck. You knew that already, and so did I, and yet I made the mistake of packing some pipes in a checked bag on a recent trip. Not only was my bag lost (sorry, "delayed") but when it finally showed up the next day I opened it to find a TSA note saying my bag had been inspected...and all my carefully packed pipes now loose and rattling around. "Maybe they're all okay," I thought as I extracted them...they were not.
The two casualties were an Old Dominion cob that I rather liked, and far worse, my one and only meerschaum, a vintage specimen with what I think might be an amber stem. More fool me for packing it in a checked bag, I know, but still so fricking pissed. Took pics of the broken pipes and will submit a claim with the TSA, but even if they do reimburse me for the damage y'all will appreciate it's not the monetary value of a couple of pipes, but the sentimental value--that meerschaum was a Christmas present years ago, and previously belonged to a lifelong navy man, so there's a story and connection there I'll never get back.
Rant over, and the moral is don't make the same mistake as me--never trust the TSA not to break your stuff!