Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

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Fainn
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Fainn » Wed Feb 17, 2016 9:12 pm

The alcohol treatments works on SOME pipes not all pipes. It depends on the blends that have previously smoked in them, age, whether or not it has a filter, etc. It will on pipes in which Captain Black have been smoked. I also used the method on two Savinellis in which I smoked the same blend. One came away clean and the other was unaffected by the alcohol treatment.

I heard a rumor Five Brother can remove ghosting, but I am still experimenting. I'll let you know.

If the pipe comes with a filter, use the filter or smoke non-aros to keep out excess wetness. If the pipe comes without a filter, smoke whatever you like. Except Blenders Gold and Paladin. They should never be smoked under any circumstances.
Last edited by Fainn on Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Rusty » Wed Feb 17, 2016 9:33 pm

Pipes absorb tobacco byproducts. When they're well smoked they resonate with the flavours of the blends that you smoke. So they are richer in flavour and this is what Cleon is saying. And to pipe smokers this is sweet. This is the nature of most pipe materials. It's not in the design but rather in the material.

So what needs cleaning? Well, which parts become a problem without cleaning? You should do an experiment. Stop cleaning your pipes. Find out which parts become a problem and when (or how frequently). This is a worthwhile experiment and you'll learn more faster. That translates into more enjoyment in your pipe smoking. Nothing you will do will ruin your pipes. And this would make a good thread for reporting your findings. You'll discover exactly which parts need cleaning, what kind of cleaning, and why. I did this and went a year (approx. 500 bowls), absent cleaning, with a nice new Dunhill and I was impressed with how much one learns. It took me 30 years before doing this experiment. Don't wait so long.

You should also distinguish estate pipes that may reek of somebody else's tobacco choices and new pipes which will take on the flavours of your tobaccos. The cleaning or treatment is, hopefully quite different for each. Though there may be people that S/A their own pipes. That's another conversation but it's not the same as routine maintenance and cleaning.

Oh, one more thing... keep your pipes in pipe socks when you're not using them.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Fainn » Thu Feb 18, 2016 6:43 am

Forgot one important thing - stems. Dry out two baby wipes. Soak one in olive oil. Let it dry for a couple of days. Use it to wipe the stem and use the other wipe to get rid of any excess oil on the stem. This prevents oxidation and can make even the most used pipes appear to have brand new stems. You can use the same wipes for two or three months.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Cleon » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:08 am

Goose55 wrote:Thank you for your post, Cleon.

I've read about using salt & alcohol, especially Ever Clear. So that helps confirm.

Have you used this procedure, Cleon?

If so, did it remove the "cake" as well?
I've only used it on estate pipes that I've bought off others. As I mentioned before, I like my pipes to develop a character based on what I smoke in them. It's almost like the seasoning on a cast iron skillet...not quit...but you get the picture. So I don't like to clean my pipes much. Just the stem. And ream when needed, but not to bare wood.

This procedure will not remove cake at all. It might soften it. If you do want to remove cake and you don't have a reamer, use some sandpaper wrapped around a dowel rod. Cake is good, though. You don't want to remove too much. It's what makes the pipe taste good, IMO.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by John-Boy » Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:20 am

Cottage cheese method.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by JimVH » Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:27 am

John-Boy wrote:Cottage cheese method.
Yes, but you have to use plenty of black pepper.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Goose55 » Thu Feb 18, 2016 11:04 am

Wow. What a wealth of great responses/ answers. I am going to come back here often, and study through the posts and add a lot of this info to my pipe document file.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Jocose » Thu Feb 18, 2016 11:11 am

Goose55 wrote:Wow. What a wealth of great responses/ answers. I am going to come back here often, and study through the posts and add a lot of this info to my pipe document file.
The link in yer sig line doesn't work.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by GaryInVA » Thu Feb 18, 2016 11:11 am

Goose55 wrote:Wow. What a wealth of great responses/ answers. I am going to come back here often, and study through the posts and add a lot of this info to my pipe document file.
I wouldn't put JB's cottage cheese info in your file.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by John-Boy » Thu Feb 18, 2016 11:44 am

GaryInVA wrote:
Goose55 wrote:Wow. What a wealth of great responses/ answers. I am going to come back here often, and study through the posts and add a lot of this info to my pipe document file.
I wouldn't put JB's cottage cheese info in your file.
Yeah. You don't file cottage cheese, you put it in yer pipe.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Hovannes » Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:21 pm

What I do:
Avoid smoking tobacco with lots of goop
Wait until the pipe cools.
Remove the ash.
Run a pipe cleaners up the mouthpiece.
Remove the stem
Take the pipe cleaner out of the mouthpiece without pulling it back
Run the cleanest end of the pipe cleaner through the airway into the bowl a few time (double the pipe cleaner if it is a large airway or if you want to root around the well on, say, a Peterson System)
Make a "U" to fit the inside of the bowl and run it around the bowl
Let it rest.

Every month or so, after cleaning, take a pipe cleaner and shot glass and swab the innards with liquor.
Drink whats left in the shot glass.
Let the pipe dry.

Italian pipes get Galiano or Amaretto
Irish pipes get Jameson's
French pipes get Brandy
Greek pipes get Metaxa
Danish pipes get Aquavit
Spanish pipes get Sherry
German pipes get Jagermeister

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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Rusty » Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:35 pm

Goose55 wrote:Wow. What a wealth of great responses/ answers. I am going to come back here often, and study through the posts and add a lot of this info to my pipe document file.
I'd like you to enlarge upon the notion that you opened with:
Goose55 wrote:I like the idea of a "sweet" pipe for the most enjoyment, and have seen some products advertised as "Pipe Sweeteners," but am wondering what some of you do to help keep your pipe clean and sweet.
There is a theory about pipe smoking in that statement concerning the effect of smoking and what it does to the pipe that motivates your notion of "clean smoke", "sweet smoke" and it even extends into the system pipes that you just purchased. I think you can't help but notice that many of us do not share the same idea of pipe smoking, which may be why you're getting advice that looks contrary to your desires. In your opening post there is an assumption that we are dealing with the same notion as you. It's not exclusively true, though some here might be doing the same thing as you. It's worth some discussion.

So why not enlarge upon your idea? Let's see what is behind it.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Pepik » Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:21 pm

Rgrds,
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by hogleg » Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:25 pm

Goose55 wrote:I have heard that using an almost 100% proof grain alcohol like Ever Clear is good. Anyone use that, and if so, what has been your experience?
That's all I use. Have to get it when I travel Not legally sold in Virginia.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by GaryInVA » Thu Feb 18, 2016 2:12 pm

hogleg wrote:
Goose55 wrote:I have heard that using an almost 100% proof grain alcohol like Ever Clear is good. Anyone use that, and if so, what has been your experience?
That's all I use. Have to get it when I travel Not legally sold in Virginia.
Shortly after I moved to New Mexico 5 months ago I found Everclear at my local grocery store. First time I've ever seen it in person, and I believe it is 190 proof (95% alcohol).
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Pepik » Thu Feb 18, 2016 3:00 pm

I've yet to have an issue with 151, then again I also use a retort for cleaning to rather good effect.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Bloodhound » Thu Feb 18, 2016 3:10 pm

Goose55 wrote:Wow. What a wealth of great responses/ answers. I am going to come back here often, and study through the posts and add a lot of this info to my pipe document file.
They are just showing off cause you are a new guy...

Everclear is a great agent and with salt or cotton balls its what I use to clean up an estate pipe. For my regular use pipes, I smoke em till they need attention, then I use bourbon or rum...ream them, then wipe down with bourbon or rum and then dip the pipe cleaner in the bourbon or rum and finish the clean up till I get clean pipe cleaners...then smoke again...The babywipes with olive oil is also a great tip/trick I have used it as well.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by MrPiper » Thu Feb 18, 2016 4:16 pm

xxxxxx
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by Jocose » Thu Feb 18, 2016 5:33 pm

Friends dont let friends smoke aromatics.
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Re: Cleaning Pipes. What Is The Best Method?

Post by SlowToke » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:38 pm

Like Rusty, Cleon, and MrPiper, I'm in the dirty pipe group. I haven't cleaned my pipes with alcohol or more than a few pipe cleaners in a few years at least and my pipes smoke just the way I like. I almost never remove the stems except on a Savinelli that is supposed to have a filter or a spacer (I smoke it without either.) I'll take it apart every now and then and clean out the crud.
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