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To Take Ze Pipe Apart Or Not; That Is The Question

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Trout Bum

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A very knowledgable pipester told me he never takes his pipes apart, or does so as little as possible. He does clean them fairly regularly, just doesn't dissassemble them. Of course, this requires a pipe that will pass a cleaner, as most good pipes will. Any of you guys heard of this practice?
 

Aaron

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yeah, actually I have. The guy who sold my wife my Meerschaum told me never to take the stem off the pipe, said you didn't need to. He said put a pipe cleaner though it and that's all you need. But that was a meer after all. You can find his site here. www.sultanpipes.com I recommend him for all your meerschaum needs. But that's not what you asked. lol.
 

Hermit

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I rarely take apart the ones
that easily pass a fluffy.
 

Puff Daddy

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They don't have too many parts, ya don't hafta be skeered to take em apart, they're pretty easy to put back together :suspect:
 

Winslow

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I take mine apart periodically to clean out the shank with a shank brush for
the briars.Much gunk gets deposited in there over time.
Meerschaum I remove the tenon piece every 6 months because behind the screw in tenon is where fluff builds up from the pipe cleaners,gets wet and swells up
when you smoke and impedes the draw. :x

Winslow :sunny:
 

Justpipes

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I take my pipes apart about every 3-6 months for a thorough grain alcohol cleaning. I might take some of them apart in less than 3 months and some more than 6 months. It depends mostly on the amount I have smoked them. I don't think it is good to take a pipe apart repeatedly, say on a daily basis or even weekly because it can loosen the fit of a push stem. The exception are my Kaywoodies with the screw in drinkless system. I take them apart for cleaning on a daily basis when they are in my regular rotation without any ill effects.
 

Buddy Springman

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I deep clean one pipe each Sunday morning, so that works out to taking the stem out about once a year (the database tracks deep cleanings as well as last smoked date). And they're not really dirty then because they get the iso soaked fluffy after each smoke.

Buddy
 

Natch

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Puff Daddy":i1sdu68g said:
They don't have too many parts, ya don't hafta be skeered to take em apart, they're pretty easy to put back together :suspect:
PD, could you please send me complete reassembly instructions with schematic drawings? I took out the stem from the shank and I can't remember which part goes where? :mrgreen:

I guess I'm the exception here, as I pretty much take my pipes apart after every smoke, but then with Kirstens and 9mm filters, (much of what I smoke) it's pretty much required. Even with my meers and "regular" pipes, I generally take them apart to clean every smoke. But by "clean" I mean run a soft pipe cleaner through. As far as scrubbing with bristle cleaners, using alcohol, reaming, that's one a year or so as needed. Actually, the previous statement has a lie in it, I use alcohol with every cleaning, but it never touches the pipe.
:drunken:

Natch
 

Hermit

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Natch":ncpmq5x4 said:
Actually, the previous statement has a lie in it, I use alcohol with every cleaning, but it never touches the pipe.
:drunken:

Natch

When I first read that, I thought, OCD much?
Then, upon a second reading, I realized, Hey me too! :lol:
 

pipetongue1

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Even' All, After 5-6 smokes, I completely clean my pipes after I get 12 or so pipes to clean, no pipe ever goes back to the rack smoked, Ken :tongue:
Pacem en Puffing! :tongue: From The Northeast Kingdom! :tongue:
 

Mikem

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I remove the stem about every third smoke and thoroughly clean. I run a couple of pipe cleaners through the pipe after every smoke.
 

LL

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I keep my pipes disassembled and soaking in an ultrasonic-vibrating a tub of acetone (essentially a jumbo-sized jewelry cleaner). Before smoking I dry them in a microwave oven and then park in an autoclave for 15 minutes. Immediately after smoking and before returning to the tub, they are sterilized with a hand held, high pressure steam gun and passed through an alcohol flame.

Works for me.
 

Puff Daddy

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LL":xs2ltzhu said:
I keep my pipes disassembled and soaking in an ultrasonic-vibrating a tub of acetone (essentially a jumbo-sized jewelry cleaner). Before smoking I dry them in a microwave oven and then park in an autoclave for 15 minutes. Immediately after smoking and before returning to the tub, they are sterilized with a hand held, high pressure steam gun and passed through an alcohol flame.

Works for me.
You forgot to mention the chanting, you've got to chant over the alchohol flame to exorcise the demons out before returning them to the acetone. :bounce:
 

Muddler

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I pull the stems out after every smoke & clean them. They don't break.
 

PipeRanter

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i usualy always clean out my pipes after i smoke them just to keep the crud out of em and such then again with my decent sized pipe colection some i dont clean as much but atleast give em a good once ove. :elephant:
 
A

Anonymous

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This boils down to two basic issues.

One is that if you remove the stem and replace it while the pipe's still going or still warm , the fit will get looser the more you do this.

The second is headspace. If the end of the tenon fits flush up against the inside of the mortise, there's no need to pull the stem for cleaning. If it doesn't (evidenced by gunk on the face of the tennon end after smoking), there is.

You don't need alcohol. Just clean it while it's still warm & goopy in there. It'll come right out.

You don't need bristle cleaners. In light of the above, if you don't let it go 'til it's hardened, a regular cleaner will take care if it.

Roll up a kleenex to get the gunk in the headspace.

:face:
 

skaukatt

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LL, perhaps you should submit this process as an article for an upcoming P&T Mag or Pipe Collector magazine!

There was a time when I took the pipe apart after every smoke (upon cooling) for a thorough cleaning. Then I read some posts in various forums, etc. on the reasons not to do this, ie: loosens the joining of stem and tenon junction, etc. so I changed my philosophy about this, slightly. While I don't think that in one man's or woman's lifetime he/she will disassemble a pipe to the extent that it will cause the demise of the "fit" of tenon and stem, I think that common sense should rule the day here. Use caution, take it apart only when necessary, as posted here already by many. If the pipe needs a thorough cleaning as it will at times, then take it apart at that time.

If the cleaner doesn't pass through it, as is the case of many of my bents - which is not to say that they have poor workmanship, as this happens on a few of my Dunhill's Charatans, high grades etc... (this is the source of another discussion) because of the bend in the stem, even with bending and spinning the cleaner, then there is no alternative then to take the pipe apart after a few smokes or when it becomes apparent that airflow is diminished.

My philosophy is not to get too stressed about it. Use common sense and caution and your pipe will last a lifetime or few.

Lou, NY
 

LL

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^^^^ Bingo. A compromise that accommodates all the factors is the way to go. Don't ignore cleaning, but don't be obsessive either. The 80/20 rule applies.

skaukatt":ixszsula said:
If the cleaner doesn't pass through it, as is the case of many of my bents - which is not to say that they have poor workmanship, as this happens on a few of my Dunhill's Charatans, high grades etc... (this is the source of another discussion) because of the bend in the stem, even with bending and spinning the cleaner, then there is no alternative than to take the pipe apart after a few smokes or when it becomes apparent that airflow is diminished.
There is usually one (depends on the specimen). Carve a little cleaner guide/ramp sort of thing into the face of the mortise.
 

skaukatt

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LL, I would caution against modifying the mortise. Seems excessive just to accomodate the passage of a cleaner. I take a less is more approach when reaching for the tools!

JMHO, though.

Lou, NY
 

LL

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skaukatt":tpekixb9 said:
LL, I would caution against modifying the mortise. Seems excessive just to accomodate the passage of a cleaner. I take a less is more approach when reaching for the tools!
I never understood the "sacredness of originality" regarding such mods. Why? Because on the super-premium brands---Barbi, Rasmussen, Ivarsson, etc.---such details are always found. The only reason they aren't on less expensive pipes is the maker was trying to save a buck. If a ramp had been there new, in other words, you'd be pleased. But since it wasn't, the maker's laziness/shortcut should be... preserved?

Hm. :suspect:
 
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