Breaking In A New Wood Pipe
A new pipe requires proper breaking in to avoid damage. With normal smoking a layer of carbon gradually builds up in the tobacco chamber. This layer protects the briar against the heat of the burning tobacco like tire brick in a wood stove. Most pipes have a unique heat-resistant lining applied to the tobacco chamber to insulate the bowl. Without compromising the flavour of the tobacco, this aids in protecting the pipe against break-in burnout until a sufficient layer of carbon can be established.
We Suggest The Following Breaking-In Methods For All Wood Pipes
Before first filling your new pipe, apply a thin layer of honey to the entire tobacco chamber with your fingers. It's high sugar content will hasten the desired build-up of carbon.
Some recommend filling your pipe half-full for the first few smokes to start building the cake forming to the bottom of the bowl. Filling the pipe to the top will work just the same, as long as it is smoked gently as possible.
Pay close attention to avoid overheating your pipe (see "smoking" below)
A bowl of tobacco that burns evenly without going out can only be obtained by careful packing. Pack the tobacco into the bowl in thirds. Fill the bowl to the top a pinch at a time, then gently press it down in the bottom third, leaving plenty of spring in the tobacco. Repeat this procedure pressing more firmly in the upper two thirds of the bowl. There should be some spring left when the bowl is full. The draw should be consistent and steady. If the tobacco is not packed tightly enough, it will burn too quickly overheating the pipe and likely burning your tongue. Empty the bowl and repack it using a more firm pack. If the tobacco is packed too tightly, you will have a difficulty drawing on the pipe and keeping it lit. In this case, remove tobacco and refill.
Carefully apply the flame in a circular motion over the whole surface of the tobacco while taking long slow puffs. Completely light the top portion of the tobacco being sure to keep the pipe upright. Tamp down the burning embers gently into the unburned portion of the tobacco.
At this point, re-lighting is necessary to get a thorough and even burn of your tobacco. If your pipe happens to extinguish, we suggest gently tamping down any ash before re-lighting.
Smoke your pipe gently and evenly. Puffing too vigorously will burn your tongue and may cause damage to the bowl from overheating. If the bowl becomes too hot, let your pipe go out and cool off before re-lighting. If your pipe appears to be going out, place two fingers over the bowl while you draw. This will help localize the draft reviving the smoke. We recommend that the average smoker have a minimum of four pipes. Two to be used each day while the other two are resting.
We hope this blog was helpful and...
Gord's Smoke Shop Ltd. - Red Deer, AB
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