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Clenching- What Is It?

(27 posts)
  • Started 11 months ago by jpmcwjr
  • Latest reply from Olkofri
  1. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Holding the pipe in the mouth hands free.

    Clenching is somewhat of a misleading term, as it doesn't mean fiercely clamping down with your jaw on the pipe stem. For me, it's using the least amount of pressure while still keeping the pipe from dropping out or flopping around.

    Where to place the stem for the best comfort? It seems to vary widely, but few use the front teeth exclusively. Besides, having the pipe stick straight out of the mouth is impractical in many situations, and silly looking in others.

    Softie bits? Personal preference. Some say they make clenching more difficult, some swear by them. When I tried them, I didn't know they should be removed after a smoke and the stem wiped off.

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 11 months ago #
  2. ignaciojn

    ignaciojn

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    It is something I'm very awkward at.

    Ignacio
    Posted 11 months ago #
  3. mso489

    mso489

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    In my old jaw, I don't want much pressure against or between my teeth, so heavier pipes are only held long enough to light them. If I'm going to be busying around and doing anything besides smoking while a pipe is in my mouth, it's going to be lit, and it's going to be no more than about 1.6 ounces. For long, meditative smokes, I stay seated and hold the pipe except for relights. Clenching is a kind of misnomer, but another word hasn't risen to replace it, so clenching it is. When I smoke smaller, lighter weight pipes, I usually smoke flake, plug, coin or rope, and get an average length smoke. I have several bigger deeper pipes that weigh less proportionate to their size, and they also work for clenching. Odd (to me) flake, plug, etc., seem to smoke longer even when grated to smaller size pieces, even when somewhat dried.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  4. unkleyoda

    unkleyoda

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    I clench almost all the time. I clench on my right, just behind my canines, in my front most molars. See my avatar.


    So you say you can drink? Well, I'm from Wisconsin. Try to keep up.
    Posted 11 months ago #
  5. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    Great description, John. I just can't imagine myself holding my pipe all the time. I probably wouldn't smoke very often if I had to hold it, plus smoking while driving, riding my bike, or working at the bench just wouldn't be very practical.

    Michael
    Posted 11 months ago #
  6. olkofri

    Olkofri

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    I'm with you, Ignacio, I haven't managed the art of sippuffing hands-free. Either I get no smoke in my mouth or I end up inhaling.

    Not the sweet, new grass with flowers is this harvesting of mine;
    Not the upland clover bloom...
    Posted 11 months ago #
  7. scloyd

    scloyd

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    I hold the pipe more than I clench. If I clench for more than 10 seconds I feel like I'm about to drool. I'll clench for 5-10 seconds and then grab the pipe and hold it for a while. Then I'll clench again, then hold it for a while. I don't want to be known as the drooling piper.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  8. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Uncle- I do the same by default, but am trying to sometimes shift to the other side.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  9. irishearl

    irishearl

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    Early on in my pipe smoking I attempted clenching but it didn't work out for me. Probably couldn't get the hang of doing it right. Merely managed to put teeth marks in the vulcanite stems and it prompted a lot of saliva accumulating around the bit. Then, too, I favor large pipes which are too heavy to clench comfortably. So, it just isn't right for me.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  10. winton

    winton

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    The only time I clench is when I am looking for my lighter.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  11. jaytex969

    jaytex969

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    It's what you do from the time you leave Taco Bell until you get home...

    Gunner, Black Frigate. Say "Hello" to my little friend!
    Posted 11 months ago #
  12. tbradsim1

    tbradsim1

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    You either Got It or You Ain’t.

    The Old Cajun
    Posted 11 months ago #
  13. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Diamond Jim Brady said, "Them that's gots 'em clenches 'em."

    Posted 11 months ago #
  14. brooklynpiper

    brooklynpiper

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    I’m not a huge clencher, which is weird because of how much I clench my jaw and grind my teeth when I’m not smoking a pipe. Just a morning thought I never connected.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  15. mikethompson

    mikethompson

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    I don't clench because I can never find a comfortable spot, plus I enjoy looking at the pipe as I smoke as well. Sometimes I'm just re-lighting so much clenching is impractical.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  16. npod

    npod

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    I clench often. That's one reason I have been drawn away from Castello and more toward Danish pipes. The latter have lighter weight and very comfortable stems in general vs the Italian school.

    Neal
    Posted 11 months ago #
  17. paulie66scandinavian

    Paul

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    In order to clench comfortably, there are two main factors that count,first,the stem(button)must not be bulky,and secundo,the pipe itself needs better be light weight,well balanced,so from this point my go to' pipes are either Lovat shapes,light straight or half bent bulldogs.

    Paul The Scandinavian'
    Posted 11 months ago #
  18. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    Mike I totally understand the first part of your statement, but this...

    Sometimes I'm just re-lighting so much clenching is impractical.

    I find that when keeping the pipe clenched, I rarely ever have to relight my pipe. because their is always a gentle airflow through the pipe keeping it burning cool. If I take the pipe out of my mouth and hold it, that is when I find myself relighting. But, like I said, I can understand not finding a comfortable spot, and looking at the pipe as you smoke. That makes sense.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  19. brian64

    brian64

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    I find that when keeping the pipe clenched, I rarely ever have to relight my pipe. because their is always a gentle airflow through the pipe keeping it burning cool.

    +1 … I'm nearly at the bottom of a bowl of Irish Flake right now that I've had clenched almost the entire time without one relight. But that's largely due to adequate drying time prior to packing.

    “Bipartisan usually means some larger-than-usual deception is being carried out.” – George Carlin
    Posted 11 months ago #
  20. hoosierpipeguy

    hoosierpipeguy

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    See my photo? That's clenching. When I retire and am able to just sit back and smoke, perhaps I'll quit clenching.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  21. olkofri

    Olkofri

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    I rarely ever have to relight my pipe. because their is always a gentle airflow through the pipe keeping it burning cool.

    Are you using the breath method there, Cosmic?

    Posted 11 months ago #
  22. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    Yes, Olkofri, but it wasn't till I got on this forum and read some of Kashmir's posts that I knew it even had a name. It's easy really, just put the pipe in your mouth and forget about it. There's really not much to it.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  23. johnbarleycorn

    johnbarleycorn

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    ^ That is one of the best explanations of the breath method I have heard put into words. Trying to follow most over complicated descriptions of it makes you end up trying to breath through your eyeballs like the Tim Robbin's character in Bull Durham.

    And little Sir John and the nut brown bowl proved the strongest man at last
    Posted 11 months ago #
  24. olkofri

    Olkofri

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    Yeah, I've never been able to make it work. I'll try just sticking the pipe in my mouth and see what happens. Thanks!

    Posted 11 months ago #
  25. johnmosesbrowning

    johnmosesbrowning

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    I hold the pipe more than I clench. If I clench for more than 10 seconds I feel like I'm about to drool. I'll clench for 5-10 seconds and then grab the pipe and hold it for a while. Then I'll clench again, then hold it for a while. I don't want to be known as the drooling piper.

    This makes me feel so much better. I've been trying to learn the "breath method" and it seems to facilitate a wet mouth.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  26. crashthegrey

    crashthegrey

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    I clench almost exclusively. Not for any other reason than my hands are free. It just happened. One day, I stopped having to take the pipe out of my mouth. I just assume if you smoke enough bowls, it happens one day. Perhaps not for everyone, but I never put much thought into it.

    Posted 11 months ago #
  27. olkofri

    Olkofri

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    True dat, johnmosesbrowning. I tend to salivate with the thing in my mouth. I once wondered if some of the humidity in the bowl and the subsequent gurgling some experience was related to clenching.

    Posted 11 months ago #

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