Three Cheers for Coffee Grounds!

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mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
3,968
82
As was recommended to me in another thread, I stuffed the bowls of both my 1955 Dunhill Zulu and 2015 Peterson Christmas with coffee grounds to remove their respective ghosts. The Peterson could probably use another round, but I was amazed at how well it worked on the Dunhill. I know its probably an old trick, but thought it might help some of us new guys out!


 

d4k23

Senior Member
Mar 6, 2018
300
0
I missed the other thread. How long did you keep the coffee grounds in the bowl? And was that it, dry grounds and wait?
I did the alcohol soaked cotton bowls, about 3 rounds of it. It was pretty successful getting a ghost out of some estates my sister in law picked up for me. I have a few more to clean and would love to try another method, as no matter how careful I was, I got a bit of alcohol on the bowl and if I wasn't quick enough to wipe it clean, it may have discolored them a bit.

 

mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
3,968
82
Dry grounds and wait. I packed the bowl rather tightly (although I will try looser next to e as per Cortez) and waited a couple days. It was very effective.
I've done the alcohol and salt treatment before, but this works as good if not better, and is much easier to do.

 

carolinachurchwarden

Preferred Member
May 9, 2018
1,682
0
Raleigh, NC
I used this trick on one of my basket pipes that I bought first when I picked up the pipe again. I smoked and smoked on it before it got sour and then decided to start the water treatment after each smoke. With that, I decided to wash it out, then I stuffed it with used coffee grounds, so they were wet. I left it packed over night and after washing it out again, the sour taste was gone and it smelled tons better and cleaner.

 

mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
3,968
82
The used grounds I had were slightly damp when I put them in the pipes. I'm going to try wetter ones next time, and pack the bowls a little looser.

 

pappymac

Preferred Member
Feb 26, 2015
1,838
7
I started using this method three or four years ago using the damp leftover grounds from my morning pot of coffee. I also discovered that you can cut open a used K-Cup and it has just about the right amount of grounds to fill a bowl. Word of caution though, don't use flavored coffee grounds.
I pack the bowl fairly firm and let it set over night so at least 8 to 10 hours. I also pack the mortise with the wet grounds. I usually dump the bowl and then hold it under the faucet to flush out the mortise.
I gave up on the salt and alcohol method because I would let the pipe sit overnight and not see a lot of difference in the salt. I now use cotton balls instead of the salt and it works better for me.

 

captaincalabash

New member
Feb 25, 2016
32
7
Texas
This is great stuff, but I have an "over-detailed" question: as you speak of coffee grounds, do you mean unused or do you mean already used to build a brew then dried to the correct degree of dampness?

 

jpmcwjr

Preferred Member
May 12, 2015
13,529
132
Monterey Peninsula
I use the (used) grounds from an espresso puck, so while wet, aren't sopping wet, packed firmly. I wait several days for them to completely dry, then rinse out the bowl and airway with a hot water flush. Paper towel dry, pipe cleaner though stem, and you can smoke immediately. To be more thorough, remove stem, Q-tip the gunk out of the mortise, (or folded pipe cleaner or wad of paper towel).

 

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
25,923
95
The you can recycle the coffee grounds by putting them on your roses or other plants. Good trick to know for eliminating ghosts.

 

mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
3,968
82
I used to take the coffee grounds home from the bakery I was at and added it to the compost. The grounds create a tremendous amount of heat in there which helps everything break down.
I'm just starting a second round on the girls now, this time with damper grounds. Hopefully this will fully exorcise the ghosts in there.

 

mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
3,968
82
Just a little update for those interested:
I just removed the dried coffee grounds from both bowls and they are completely ghost free! If anything, they smell faintly of coffee, but certainly nothing overpowering, and nothing that a good bowl will fix.
Great results and very affordable!

 

cortezattic

Preferred Member
Nov 19, 2009
14,401
173
Chicago, IL
Sounds good. I'll try this the next time I need to freshen a pipe. Just to get it straight, you used slightly damp grounds, and not too densely packed?

 

scloyd

Preferred Member
May 23, 2018
1,770
28
I'll give it a try. I don't drink coffee but we always have some K-Cups for guests. I just loaded a Tinderbox "ITALY" basket pipe (my first pipe) with dry grounds. I'll let it sit until tomorrow and see what happens.


 

jpmcwjr

Preferred Member
May 12, 2015
13,529
132
Monterey Peninsula
Cortez- Quite damp to wet. Sopping wet is fine, just takes a lot longer. And packed firmly. Several days to dry out, depending on your ambient humidity- if outside in Alabama, probably ready in October....(!)
I don't think dry grounds will be near as effective as wet. But let's hear your results!

 

mikethompson

Preferred Member
Jun 26, 2016
3,968
82
I'm thinking that as the damp grounds dry, they wick away the tars and general 'stank' of a ghosted pipe. So dry grounds might be ineffective. But I am a pipe smoker, not a chemist.

 

scloyd

Preferred Member
May 23, 2018
1,770
28
I'm thinking that as the damp grounds dry, they wick away the tars and general 'stank' of a ghosted pipe. So dry grounds might be ineffective.
The wicking makes sense. I am going to moisten the grounds and leave them until they dry out.