not made for pipes and tobacco - hacks reappropriation

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Zeno Marx

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List your hacks, please. I thought a thread dedicated to hacks would be handier than running into them in the middle of conversations in other threads.

What are good commonly found, household chemicals to use for de-oxidizing stems without harming the hallmarks etc? Oxyclean? I believe there is a fountain pen repair service that also has their own proprietary solution.

I think it was here that someone pointed out using fishing rod rubber clips for an option for hanging and organizing pipes on the wall rather than going with the traditional pipe rack. Heck, even mount one on the dash of your car. Available on Amazon, ebay, etc.
EXAMPLE

Another user, and a youtuber or two, mentioned vinyl tubing as an alternative to pipe bits. I've found 3/8" and 1/2" cover a large range of pipe stem sizes (inner diameter tubing specs). Less expensive and more durable, though it requires a little more effort to modify for use. Can be found in black, clear, and possibly other colors. Watch for thickness of tubing as well, because it can be thinner or thicker variety. I've found the best luck is buying by the foot at your local hardware store rather than buying a giant coil of it at Home Depot for $8+. I paid $.59 for a foot of clear 1/2", and that should make for around 12 stems (an inch is just about perfect for a bit). I personally prefer the tooth feel over rubber as well. A little resistance, so you aren't totally giving up on the feel of the actual stem.


And then today, on Briar Blues youtube channel, he used a sunglass case for pipes for traveling and storage. They come in different styles and configurations. Some of them actually look like pipe display cases, while some have drawers like a little jewelry organizer.

 

ontariopiper

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Great idea for a thread!

Oxyclean (and its many off-brand equivalents) is great for raising oxidation on stems. I use about a tablespoon of powder in a small plastic tray and add warm water from the tap to cover the stems (about 1 to 1.5 cups of water?). Soak for a few hours, though I often forget them and leave it overnight without any harm.

An Oxy soak CAN dissolve the paint in stamped logos, so if you don't want to have to refill them, a dab of petroleum jelly on the logo will stop the Oxy from getting to the goods.

After the soak, I scrub away the loose oxidation with 0000 steel wool and/or Magic Eraser type pads.
 

Zeno Marx

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You got rocks in your pants? I mean in your pipe?

I have a great smoking pipe that the bottom of the bowl is a cone. The airhole is about 1/2 inch too much above where I feel it should be, but maybe I'm wrong. As I said, it is a great smoker. However, with each bowl, I dump out about a thimble of unsmoked tobacco because it is stuck down in the point of that cone. You can futz and futz to get at it, but eh...I'm ready to futz a different way. Anyone ever tried filling that type of conical drilling with a rock? I know the rock is going to get gooey and messy to keep track of and clean. It's just an idea. I know guys who used to crumple up smoking papers at the bottom to sort of deal with this. Or those Denicool crystals are another idea. Honestly, I don't want to have to buy something else. A little pea gravel seems like it would work well enough. I found one just the right size. Anyone tried this? Thoughts? Thanks.
 

Ranger107

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I bought some crystals, not Denicool, for about half the price. At the end of the bowl dump them in an ashtray. Fairly easy to pick them up and reuse.
 

Niblick

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You got rocks in your pants? I mean in your pipe?

I have a great smoking pipe that the bottom of the bowl is a cone. The airhole is about 1/2 inch too much above where I feel it should be, but maybe I'm wrong. As I said, it is a great smoker. However, with each bowl, I dump out about a thimble of unsmoked tobacco because it is stuck down in the point of that cone. You can futz and futz to get at it, but eh...I'm ready to futz a different way. Anyone ever tried filling that type of conical drilling with a rock? I know the rock is going to get gooey and messy to keep track of and clean. It's just an idea. I know guys who used to crumple up smoking papers at the bottom to sort of deal with this. Or those Denicool crystals are another idea. Honestly, I don't want to have to buy something else. A little pea gravel seems like it would work well enough. I found one just the right size. Anyone tried this? Thoughts? Thanks.
On my bigger bowled pipes I pack the bottom of the bowl with a straight Virginia bulk because I rarely smoke to the bottom. I rarely take the time to dry out my tobacco the way it should and it works good for my pipes with high draft holes.
 

Zeno Marx

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I see Blue Room Briars sells pipe stands made with strong magnets and ball bearings, and they aren't cheap. I like the idea though. Harbor Freight sells a magnetic wall strip for tools for $4.99. I haven't priced ball bearings yet. I figure wrapping the magnetic strip with a handkerchief or strip of felt would work fine. Drop a 1/2" ball bearing in the bottom of the bowl, and hang them on the wall with the magnetic strip.
 

Psychsmoker

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I see Blue Room Briars sells pipe stands made with strong magnets and ball bearings, and they aren't cheap. I like the idea though. Harbor Freight sells a magnetic wall strip for tools for $4.99. I haven't priced ball bearings yet. I figure wrapping the magnetic strip with a handkerchief or strip of felt would work fine. Drop a 1/2" ball bearing in the bottom of the bowl, and hang them on the wall with the magnetic strip.
On Amazon. PGN Bearings, you get 25 for like $9 and free ship for prime members.

how many pipes you think that strip will hold? 10?
 

Zeno Marx

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This is the time of year people gift weird little food and junk items that come in small tins. Like 10 peppermint breath mints in a little round tin. They make for great hydration systems. Poke a couple holes in them, and place a damp paper towel inside. No direct contact with your tobacco. Be sure to first wash well to get rid of any smells and food stuffs.
 
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You got rocks in your pants? I mean in your pipe?

I have a great smoking pipe that the bottom of the bowl is a cone. The airhole is about 1/2 inch too much above where I feel it should be, but maybe I'm wrong. As I said, it is a great smoker. However, with each bowl, I dump out about a thimble of unsmoked tobacco because it is stuck down in the point of that cone. You can futz and futz to get at it, but eh...I'm ready to futz a different way. Anyone ever tried filling that type of conical drilling with a rock? I know the rock is going to get gooey and messy to keep track of and clean. It's just an idea. I know guys who used to crumple up smoking papers at the bottom to sort of deal with this. Or those Denicool crystals are another idea. Honestly, I don't want to have to buy something else. A little pea gravel seems like it would work well enough. I found one just the right size. Anyone tried this? Thoughts? Thanks.
Probably want to make some pipe mud like some people use in their cob pipes.
 

Timbo

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With a high draft hole, I use the plug method of packing. Where you grab two fingers and a thumb worth of tobacco and ram/screw it into the pipe leaving an air gap that starts over the draft hole. You do need to be careful when tamping but I've had great success with this in the past until I got rid of my high draft hole pipes other than one Tinski that is too nice to sell.
 

Blackhorse

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With a high draft hole, I use the plug method of packing. Where you grab two fingers and a thumb worth of tobacco and ram/screw it into the pipe leaving an air gap that starts over the draft hole. You do need to be careful when tamping but I've had great success with this in the past until I got rid of my high draft hole pipes other than one Tinski that is too nice to sell.
Mr T - isn’t that called the Frank Method?

Anyone?
 

Timbo

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I'm pretty sure this is similar to the Frank method but it filled the entire bowl last time I watched someone on you tube. This method leaves an airgap at the bottom of the bowl, I didn't invent it. I'm pretty sure I picked it up from here years ago around when I first joined up. Besides it's more of a grab a bunch and ram it in which is how the Frank method starts but then he rotates the pipe around packing it in with his thumbs which I don't bother with.
 

RSteve

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Until I bought several maple pipes from the Anton Pipe Shop, I'd virtually never used a 9 mm filter or had a pipe with a high draft hole. With the maple pipes, I'm using Vauen filters and 2-3 Denicool rocks in the bottom of the bowl. I'm getting a wonderful smoking experience. The draw is perfect and between the Denicool rocks and Vauen filters, the smoke is cool and dry.
 

RSteve

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Until I bought several maple pipes from the Anton Pipe Shop, I'd virtually never used a 9 mm filter or had a pipe with a high draft hole. With the maple pipes, I'm using Vauen filters and 2-3 Denicool rocks in the bottom of the bowl. I'm getting a wonderful smoking experience. The draw is perfect and between the Denicool rocks and Vauen filters, the smoke is cool and dry.
And now without the 9 mm filter and Denicool crystals, everything seems very harsh. I seriously doubt if I'll ever smoke a bowl again without a filter and crystals. I know it's very not thrifty, but I only use a filter once and toss it.
 

RSteve

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I was curious to see if the White Elephant brand meerschaum filled 9 mm filters functioned differently than the Vauen filters I've been using. Foolishly, I bought a box of 100 from Tobaccopipes.com. After a short trial, I've decided that the Vauen charcoal filters are far preferable. The meerschaum filters, in my initial trials, seriously inhibit the flow of smoke. Draw is impaired. This has just been with five bowls, but with five different pipes. The test will continue.
 
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