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Some Basic Questions

Help Support Brothers of Briar:

JJPHOTO

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Sorry if these are completely elementary, but I did a search and didn't find what I was looking for, so any help would be appreicated.

1. Do pipes need to be stored in a rack or can you just lay them down anywhere at any angle? My grandpa just had them lying around or stuffed in his shirt pocket so I have no clue.

2. I keep hearing about a "resting period". How long is this and why?

3. When done with a bowl, do you do anything other than get the ash out? Like put a pipe cleaner in the stem or anything? Or do you just leave it alone?

I think that's it... thanks in advance for any help you have.
 

Benjamin Button

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I'll let a few others chime in on the pipe rack or position for resting & cleaning, and offer my $.02 for what I know/do.

When I am finished smoking I always run a pipe cleaner through the stem and try to collect any moisture I can, then I will sometimes throw another one in there for a couple hours or overnight and leave it while the pipe rests. I'll take the cleaner out after a couple hours/in the morning and usually let the pipe rest for a couple days before smoking it again. The thing about briar is that it will absorb moisture and needs a couple of days to dry out. While it won't be like a water logged piece of drift wood, it still absorbs moisture and has to dry otherwise the pipe can become "sour".
 

Aaron

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One of these days I'll probably invest in a nice pipe rack but for right now I just set my pipes up on my book case. Sometimes they fall over and I just let them sit there I don't think it's that big of a deal. My meerschaum ,on the other hand, has it's own case I put it in after I've cleaned it.

As for the resting period, I've heard anywhere from one day to one week. Myself I just let them rest about a day and smoke them again. However, with my meerschaum all I have to do is let it cool down and it's ready to smoke again that's why I like it so much. One day I plan to have so many pipes that I wont have to worry about letting them rest because it'll be a non issue, because there would be no way I could smoke them all in a day :D

With my meer, I make sure that no cake is being built up in the bowl and run a couple of pipe cleaners through it until they come out clean. Then I put her away. My briars, I dump the ashes out, let them cool and then run a couple pipe cleaners through them till they come out clean again. That's one of my favorite things about pipes the care and attention you have to give them. Love it.

I hope that's helped some, I'm know there are other brothers who know much more than I do.
 

puros_bran

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Watch me get in trouble with the mass...

It doesn't matter how you store them.. Anyone telling you different is full of horse hockey.

Resting a pipe is overrated, smoke it until you tire of it or until it goes sour.

When I'm finished smoking I blow through the pipe real hard and scrub it out with a pipe cleaner.


Pipe Maintenance isn't as hard as its made out to be. Before anyone says I'm destroying pipes ask J what my pipes look like...he received one and pronounced it wasn't even broke in yet..I had been smoking it about 4 times a week for 6 months.
 

jhuggett

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It is true, that Dunhill was in great shape... it's got some cake building in it now though. :lol:
 

JJPHOTO

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puros_bran":snx7njl1 said:
Resting a pipe is overrated, smoke it until you tire of it or until it goes sour.
And what do you do when it goes "sour"?

My grandpa always had his favorite pipe with him and he smoked it several times a day it seemed.
 

puros_bran

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Clean it.


Take the stem out.
Get a half glass of rum and some pipe cleaners.
Soak the cleaners in the rum.
Scrub the innards like a mad man.
Reinstert stem.
Go to bed.
Wake up the next day and smoke it some more if your like.
 
A

Anonymous

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JLJ2018":mo7bj56y said:
I keep hearing about a "resting period". How long is this and why?
Tobacco smoke contains water vapor. This condenses, to one degree or another, as it is drawn through the pipe. Swabbing it with cleaners gets a lot of this, but the briar itself absorbs some of it. In the shank, always. But in the bottom of the bowl as well. With many pipe and tobacco combinations, smoking it before it's dried well noticeably diminishes the qualityof the taste it delivers.

To make a long story short, how long a pipe takes to dry depends on the pipe, the way it's smoked, the way it's cleaned, and the way it's stored. "The right answer" depends a lot on the pipe and the tobacco you're smoking.

JLJ2018":mo7bj56y said:
And what do you do when it goes "sour"?
The gunk that condenses along with the water vapor inside the pipe contains a lot of complex hydrocarbons. If allowed to stay damp too long, you end up breeding the pipe equivalent of mildew.

Especially if the face of the mortise doesn't meet squarely with the end of the tennon, gunk accumulates there that either has to be gotten with a rolled-up kleenex or extra days of drying back out between smokes are in order.

Your quickest turn-around that doesn't compromise the quality of the experience will likely result from removing the stem, cleaning both halves as needed, and keeping both (seperate) in airy place with a bit of a draft (like a window sill with the window cracked) to promote drying.

Then again, if you're fine with smoking the same pipe three or four times a day 'til you've run it into the ground, and aren't very sensative to taste subleties, the above won't much apply. De gustibus non disputandem :D

A thousand monks, a thousand religions.

:face:
 

Mikem

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1. Do pipes need to be stored in a rack or can you just lay them down anywhere at any angle? My grandpa just had them lying around or stuffed in his shirt pocket so I have no clue.

If you saw my mess of pipes sitting next to me you would laugh. I have pipes in racks, on shelves and just laying around on top of the desk. Racks are nice in keeping your pipes organized and out of your way but IMHO not necessary. Laying a pipe down doesn't have any harmful effect that I know of.

2. I keep hearing about a "resting period". How long is this and why?

A lot of times I will end up smoking the same pipe all day long. I think PB answered this question the best and I agree 100%. I also think that what type of blends you smoke affect this the most. Your dryer blends such as English blends don't sour as fast as your wetter aromatics. I have heard people say they will only smoke one bowl from a pipe and then it needs to "rest" for seven days which to my minds eye is a bunch of bunk.

3. When done with a bowl, do you do anything other than get the ash out? Like put a pipe cleaner in the stem or anything? Or do you just leave it alone?

I usually will run a pipe cleaner through the stem after smoking (especially after smoking your wetter aromatics) after dumping the ashes into a can and then swirl the pipe cleaner around the bowl. I will clean the pipe with pipe spirits (sometimes bourbon) about once a month.
 
A

Anonymous

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Not to pick a fight with Mike, but there's your diff'rent strokes observation, in spades. Go about it that way, and you're periodically having to do the roto-rooter thing with alcohol because your pipe's befouled with accumulated sludge that's turning nasty on you. Keep it clean and well rested in the first place, and there's no need for alcohol or patent "pipe sweetener." Ever.

Whatever suits your taste, tobacco, pipe and temperment is "right."

:face:
 

ftrplt

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Shoot, I'll wade in here for a bit!!

I never bought into that "smoke the pipe once and let it rest for three days" philosophy! I will not, however, smoke another bowl until the pipe has cooled. I only smoke English/Balkan/Oriental type tobaccos; hence very little, if any moisture, in the bowl. I blow thru the pipe after I've emptied the ash; seldom use a pipe cleaner. Might add that I have never used a pipe cleaner on a pipe while smoking...never!!

As far as the pipe rack storage goes...I do not have all my pipes in a rack. Some are displayed in pipe boxes; some are merely stood up against any convenient structure & some are lying down! When finished with a pipe, I will place it bowl-down to let it dry and air out; just may not be in a rack. I do not "clean" the pipe after every smoke; too dern much moisture!

I do have a cleaning rotation for all my pipes. The rotation schedule is firmly stored in my memory banks!! I take a given pipe rack and have a cleaning "party" with Everclear, pipe sweetener, port, sherry, etc. and lots of pipe cleaners, Briar Wipe, stem polish, plus my trusty "Reem & Clean." I've never had a pipe go "sour," nor have I ever burned one out.

The above works well for briar, olivewood, cherry, etc. Meers I treat a bit more gently for no other reason than that's the way I was taught to do it!! I seldom smoke a meer "back-to-back." However, I have an ol' Air Force buddy who smokes meers almost exclusively; he'll stoke up a big bent meer in the morning and smoke it all day long!!! With Cherry Blend, no less!! He has never (or so he tells me!!) had a meer snap or break on him from smoking too much!! Oh well, enough!! :santa: :pipe: FTRPLT
 

puros_bran

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For whatever its worth I don't think I've had a pipe sour either...My above statement may lead to that conclusion.
But to be honest I'm not even sure what a 'sour' pipe would taste like.

I smoke mostly Va/Pers or Heavy Balken if that means anything. On the very rare occasion I will bother with an Aero its always in a cob.

I used to pull my pipes apart and clean them like a mad man about once a week.. I forgot to one week and didn't notice a change, two weeks turned into a month, which has turned into quite a long while now.

I hold to my position that piping isn't as difficult as what its made out to be..
 

the macdonald

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I bought into the "rest period" for pipes because it is an excuse to buy more pipes. I clean a pipe after a smoke with a pipe cleaner. I have a rack that is nothing more than storage because I think if you put a wet pipe in there with the stem pointing up the remaining moisture will seek the lowest point to collect, usually in the heel. Because of my theory I usually leave the stem out for a day or so and the bowl sitting on a table level.

I rarely get a pipe to go sour like this so I'm happy with it.
 

free_byrd15

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Can't say i've ever had a pipe go sour...then again, i've never smoked a pipe back to back, and i'm anal when I clean them....I probably use 5 or 6 after a bowl.
 

JJPHOTO

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Thanks for all the replies guys. Lots to learn and think about.
 
A

Anonymous

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What's beer ? With one guy, it's a six-pack of whatever's on sale to swill while he watches a game on TV. To somebody else, it's a micro-brewery masterpiece in the right-shaped glass, at the right temperature, with the right food.

Same with fishing, hunting, golf and whatever else. The mindset you approach it with determines your choice and procedure.



:face:
 

JJPHOTO

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That's a good way to put it Yak, and an analogy that I can relate to entirely.
 

Wet Dottle

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There seems to be a lot of confusion about rest time between smokes. A pipe can be smoked as often as you like, with virtually no time between bowls. I've done it often. It just needs proper maintenance and cleaning to prevent it from becoming rancid. Some people don't even care about that and just smoke the heck out of a pipe until it falls apart. Free your a$$ and your mind will follow...

As far as I can remember (my memory is not perfect, I may be a bit off in some of the details) a few years ago, when ASP had just started, there was the question of how often could a pipe be smoked without having to give it a good cleaning. By a good cleaning I mean pulling it apart and using pipe cleaners with alcohol, etc. Passing a few cleaners after a bowl doesn't count, you still have to do that no matter what. The key word here is MAJOR CLEANING.

Well, there was a fellow, I forget his name, that did the experiment. The conclusion was that if you let the pipe rest for a week between each bowl, you could smoke it forever without worrying about having it go foul. Less than a week and the pipe will eventually have to be disassembled and undergo major cleaning. That is where the week-long resting of a pipe comes from. That was his experience with his pipes (I remember he was a collector of Cooke's pipes). As far as I know, he was the only one to ever have done a systematic experiment about this matter. In other words, this guy was the only one to come up with a solid theory, all the other opinions are only hypothesis.

All my experiences corroborate his theory. But the bottom line is that you can smoke your pipe as often as you want as long as you take proper care of it.
 

Mikem

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Wet Dottle":6c2udr17 said:
There seems to be a lot of confusion about rest time between smokes. A pipe can be smoked as often as you like, with virtually no time between bowls. I've done it often. It just needs proper maintenance and cleaning to prevent it from becoming rancid.................But the bottom line is that you can smoke your pipe as often as you want as long as you take proper care of it.
IMHO that's it in a nutshell. Once you get comfortable with your methods of cleaning and when, your pipes will last a life time. I started pipe smoking 18+ years ago and have the original pipes (two Lorenzo's and a Gefapip Giant) I started out with and they all still smoke fine without ever having any sour taste.
 

Irene Adler

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puros_bran":larnh666 said:
Get a half glass of rum and some pipe cleaners.
Soak the cleaners in the rum.
Scrub the innards like a mad man.
This is only okay with a briar. DON'T do it if you have a meerschaum. It will ruin it.
 
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