Strange Problem With a Dunhill

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foggymountain

Preferred Member
Aug 14, 2012
2,862
0
Picked up my Dunhill County Oom Paul tonight to smoke in the darkroom. The Cumberland stem had gotten too loose. It hadn't been smoked in maybe a year. I taped the stem on and used it. After the smoke I removed the tape and the stem fit well. Does anyone know why?

 

gwtwdbss

Preferred Member
Jun 13, 2012
2,942
0
I have a few pipes with stems that seem to get a bit looser when the weather changes. It usually happens when there are several days with lots of rain and I am visiting a relative with window AC units instead of central air. The stems on tjese pipes don't need taping though. It could be something to do with the humidity in the air? I would think that with conditions like I described the Briar would swell, so it really baffles me. Once I smoke them, the stems tighten right back up.

 

papipeguy

Preferred Member
Jul 31, 2010
15,800
2
Bethlehem, Pa.
Interesting. I have the same issue with my Red Bark. It is loose but tightens up once it is smoked. It sits in a rack with other pipes and none of them have this going on.

 

tbradsim1

Preferred Member
Jan 14, 2012
7,442
11
Bruce I could be h humidty, my old house when it's dry and humidty is low the doors get loose the windows start rattling, I have pipes like that, smoking them tightens them up, different woods shrink and expand different, one year I had to crawl under The house and shim up all my piers.

 

allan

Preferred Member
Dec 5, 2012
2,429
0
Bronx, NY
Foggy
I have had similar issues with some Dunhills. One of our members suggested using a small amount of a plain white soap bar and smearing into onto the tenon. That should slightly swell the material and make it just a tad less loose.
It worked for me
Allan

 

numbersix

Preferred Member
Jul 27, 2012
5,452
0
This may be too obvious, but could smoking it cause it to swell up from the heat and moisture produced by the smoke?

 

john218

Preferred Member
May 5, 2012
562
0
Connecticut
I think that not smoking the pipe for a year caused the wood to dry and shrink. When you smoked it again, it picked up some moisture and tightened up.
I have had the same experience with a few pipes that were not smoked for a long while.

 

gnatjulio

Preferred Member
Mar 22, 2012
1,883
0
The tenon was loose on my (only) estate Dunhill when I first got it. Chapstick on the tenon was recommended and worked very well. Don't know if its because of its first smoke in a while since its an estate but, No problems since.

 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
14,092
70
Maryland
I keep some pipes in a rack in our basement rec-room, a few get loose down there as well, particularly ones that aren't smoked that often. But, once the pipe is smoked, they tighten up. I did have a Dunhill Cumberland that was very prone to a loose stem if not smoked frequently but always self-corrected in use.
This is one reason I try to keep my smokers at 40 or less, I just can't get to all of them with enough frequency beyond that number.

 

foggymountain

Preferred Member
Aug 14, 2012
2,862
0
Al: this is the only pipe that has that problem. I wonder if it has to do with the cumberland. I like to smoke this pipe when processing sheet film, which is done in total darkness. So a little masking tape will be required. I heard the suggestion about chap stick, but am afraid I will taste it.

 

papipeguy

Preferred Member
Jul 31, 2010
15,800
2
Bethlehem, Pa.
Foggy, I've tried the Chapstick solution on a couple of pipes and never detected any taste from it. You could always just wipe it off if it does not suit you.

 

numbersix

Preferred Member
Jul 27, 2012
5,452
0
I heard the suggestion about chap stick, but am afraid I will taste it.
I doubt you'll taste it too foggy. I usually use some straight beeswax which has no flavor but as long as it's on outside of the tenon, I doubt you'll notice it.

 

numbersix

Preferred Member
Jul 27, 2012
5,452
0
Six: I would't rush to get a Cumberland stem. I will settle for tape.
lol - too late. I sent it off today to Norwood's. He's got a great rep, and it's not too expensive. Now starts the waiting.

 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
14,092
70
Maryland
I have a couple of other Cumberland stems (Ashton, Ferndown) and not had any issue with those. The Dunhill did stay snug as long as it was smoked every week or so.

I picked up a small round bar of beeswax from a sewing store, that works fine and has no taste that I can discern. A tiny bit is all that is typicall needed. You can also put on some nail polish or Superglue for a more permanent fix (nail polish eventually wears off).

 

lonestar

Preferred Member
Mar 22, 2011
2,822
0
Edgewood Texas
The wood does expand from heat and moisture when you smoke it, and shrink when it sits for some time.

If it is still an issue do this; remove the stem and put just one or two drops of water inside the mortise of the pipe (where the stem pushes in). Move it around so it soaks into the wood all the way around. That will swell the wood. Give it a bit of time to dry before you put the stem back in. If its just a small amount of slack in the fit, that should fix it.