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Pipe Water Torture - Winter Vortex Edition

(65 posts)
  1. ashdigger

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    This is the same pipe I tortured previously with a 12 hour soak. In case anyone wonders what kind of pipe it is, it's a commissioned Eric Paulson Sandblasted Large Billiard with Saddle Stem. I have two of them that are identical in weight and dimensions.

    When I pulled it from the 12 hour bath it weighed 40 grams. For this round I let it soak for 24 hours and the weight ended up being 42 grams.

    The Vortex Torture is simple. I'm now taking this "water logged" pipe and placing it with water in the freezer. I'm letting it freeze for at least a day, maybe more and then I'll figure out where to go from there.

    I want to state that I really like this pipe. It's not disdain for a bad pipe that is driving this. It's true curiosity. I'll update this thread after the pipe is pulled from the freezer. and the ice is either chipped away or I just let it thaw. Not sure how which direction I'm going to go. After that, I'll dry it and if it works out, I'm going to smoke it and back in rotation it goes.

    So here we go.

    Ubi Ignis Est?
    Posted 5 months ago #
  2. trouttimes

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    Remind me never to get on your bad side. Poor, poor pipe. What did it ever do to you?

    “The Road goes ever on and on Down from the door where it began.
    Now far ahead the Road has gone, I must follow if I can
    Posted 5 months ago #
  3. ashdigger

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    Here is the Control Pipe

    Posted 5 months ago #
  4. didimauw

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    And why such a nice expensive pipe?

    "I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."
    Posted 5 months ago #
  5. davet

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    All in the name of science

    Posted 5 months ago #
  6. trouttimes

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    I bet Ash was the kid who tore open Tickle Me Elmo just to see how it worked instead of enjoying the wonder that was Elmo!

    Posted 5 months ago #
  7. brian64

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    I bet Ash was the kid who tore open Tickle Me Elmo just to see how it worked instead of enjoying the wonder that was Elmo!

    That sort of thing tends to escalate in adulthood.

    We all know only Ash could have posted this video:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08nUOn1HAqE

    “Bipartisan usually means some larger-than-usual deception is being carried out.” – George Carlin
    Posted 5 months ago #
  8. ashdigger

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    I actually do stuff like that all the time, I just don't video tape it, and if I did, I wouldn't put it on the interwebs.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  9. trouttimes

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    It's good to see you are warped like the rest of us. Stay grey. The inter web is not your friend.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  10. brian64

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    I actually do stuff like that all the time, I just don't video tape it

    Those would be fun to see if you did.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  11. ashdigger

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    Brian, by profession I'm a fire investigator and one of the ways to see what stuff looks like in a fire scene is to burn it. I burn all kinds of stuff. I even blow stuff up because I'm also an explosion investigator. I also watch "How Its Made" to see what sub components look like.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  12. ashdigger

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    As an example.......what do you see?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  13. brian64

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    As an example.......what do you see?

    Elmo's revenge?

    Or...what could easily have happened to my parents' house considering how I loved to play with matches as a kid.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  14. trouttimes

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    Are we looking at a fire started in the kitchen?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  15. ashdigger

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    It's a backyard appliance repair shop.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  16. brian64

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    Make that was a backyard appliance repair shop. That was one efficient blaze.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  17. seldom

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    Swamp cooler atop the house indicates a low humidity climate.

    Did someone make an insurance claim?

    Seldom Seen
    Posted 5 months ago #
  18. seldom

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    Oh, and another cool experiment! (pardon the pun).

    Posted 5 months ago #
  19. ashdigger

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    Seldom, yes a claim was filed. That's why I was there. Good eye on the swamp cooler. That photo was taken in Las Vegas.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  20. davet

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    Swamp cooler atop the house indicates a low humidity climate.

    What is the reason for rooftop mounting? You usually only see it on commercial buildings around here.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  21. ashdigger

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    It's a standard money saver in the SW. Roof mounts, window mounts, etc. Wherever yhey can use a swamp cooler, they're used.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  22. rdavid

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    The T handle sticking out of the ground. Gas shut off?

    Was that a garden/utility shed on the other side of the fence?

    "May my last breath be drawn through a pipe, and exhaled in a jest." Charles Lamb
    Posted 5 months ago #
  23. jpmcwjr

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    Someone aware enough to get the cars out of the garage- either before or after the fire was started. Or after the fire started!

    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 5 months ago #
  24. ashdigger

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    I looked at my file. That isn't a swamp cooler, it a AC Pack Unit.

    The fire scene was essentially the "repair shop; however, it spread to three other storage sheds. They were all in backyards. No vehicles.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  25. jpmcwjr

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    Can you tell us if suspicion is present, whether in you or the ins. Co? Or is your presence at their behest indication of their suspicion? Or is it s.o.p.?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  26. hoosierpipeguy

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    Looks like there was an explosion in the kitchen. Everything is pushed outward from the stove.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  27. ashdigger

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    S.O.P. and I determined it was an accidental fire.

    Improper Disposal of Smoking Materials.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  28. hoosierpipeguy

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    Looks like there was an explosion in the kitchen. Everything is pushed outward from the stove.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  29. judcasper

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    A nice and worthwhile 'experiment' if you ask me. Will this help dispel/confirm the myth that pipe bowl and water should never meet?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  30. mikethompson

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    Will this help dispel/confirm the myth that pipe bowl and water should never meet?

    Well this experiment and the other water soak one should really just add fuel to the fire. Nothing is ever dispelled in the pipe smoking world. I'm sure there are still folks who believe in the Dunhill ivory dot

    Posted 5 months ago #
  31. ashdigger

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    Okay, the pipe is out of the freezer. I'll let it thaw in the bag and then dry it out.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  32. mikethompson

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    Watching, for science.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  33. davet

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    Posted 5 months ago #
  34. renfield

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    Ash, you’re going to freak when you find the control pipe has split in two out of terror at what’s happening to its mate.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  35. ashdigger

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    Okay folks, I pulled the pipe out of the bag now that it's thawed. It weighs 45 grams. It has ZERO visible flaws. The shank/stem fit is now loose, but I expect it to tighten up, AGAIN.

    I absolutely will not subject this pipe to any more water, unless by pure accident.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  36. trouttimes

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    Repent Ash! The horrors done in the name of science.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  37. verporchting

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    I love a good science experiment, but damn, I'm glad that's not one of my pipes.

    Respect for having the intestinal fortitude to see it through and not with some cheap pipes that would be subject to claims of inferior briar, bad engineering, poor quality control, blah blah blah!

    Posted 5 months ago #
  38. mikethompson

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    Tim has done a service to the community. But how does a pipe smoke after it has been submerged in coffee, microwaved, frozen, buried in the ground, and then beat with a stick?

    We need to know these things!

    Posted 5 months ago #
  39. crashthegrey

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    I absolutely will not subject this pipe to any more water, unless by pure accident.
    So you aren't sold on the water cleaning technique? *Ducks for cover*

    Posted 5 months ago #
  40. ashdigger

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    Crash, I actually might expose the pipe to the quick cleaning with hot water. It survived the water torture and the freeze.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  41. ashdigger

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    The Water Torture Vortex Edition is complete. The shank is back to normal size. The pipe is currently still 3 grams over its dry weight so I'll let it sit tonight an smoke it tomorrow.

    Conclusion - Briar is tougher than you think. Water is not the enemy. Some of you will like the results, some will scoff. Some will just live in ignorant bliss.

    Comment - Clean your pipes how you will, just don't give the other side shit. Its unwarranted.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  42. olkofri

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    Cool experiment.

    Personally, I don't worry too much about water damage on the briar, but on the finish. Since different manufacturers may use different processes/substances, I'd rather not risk it and follow the maker's recommendations.

    I'll still wash my acrylic/vulcanite/cheap plastic mouthpieces in the sink, but the stummels shall remain hydrophobic.

    Not the sweet, new grass with flowers is this harvesting of mine;
    Not the upland clover bloom...
    Posted 5 months ago #
  43. verporchting

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    Little do you know, but you will soon learn, the pipe will now make every tobacco taste exactly like Captain Black Grape. That extra 3 grams is actually the skunk piss reservoir of grapey badness, just waiting to wreck your future piping experiences.

    While the briar survived your polar vortex water torture, it's going to hold a grudge and mess with you.

    Forever. Bwah, hah, hah, hahah.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  44. trouttimes

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    Can I choose ignorant bliss?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  45. ashdigger

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    I should have added Passive Aggressive as well for some of the members.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  46. ashdigger

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    This pipe experiment is officially over. Here's the latest photo. It shows the tortured pipe next to the control pipe. The tortured pipe is smoking just fine.

    It's kinda odd the water rinse folks haven't commented on this. I understand they think this is purely "entertainment", were they only saying this because they were "couching" their beliefs if this went sideways?

    Were they prepared with "water only runs through the pipe and minimal gets on the pipe" and other such excuses?

    Were the non-water folks only following to see the pipe destroyed by water to justify their side?

    Opinion doesn't pick winners and losers in this experiment.

    I submitted this pipe to being soaked and being frozen. I get that the sample size is currently one (anxiously awaiting DaveT's efforts), but hasn't anyone been at least "shocked" the pipe survived. This should lead to more research.

    Oh well, the pipe survived and the pipe smokes fantastic, again. The "inaugural" bowl is Sir Walter Raleigh.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  47. cosmicfolklore

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    I just don't think it has anything to do with rinsing a pipe out. First, I can't see any of the images. It is forever blocked. The one image site that all public access servers will block, and most of the forum members use that one.

    Second, I am guessing that it turned out alright. That's great. But, it doesn't have anything to do with how I wash my pipes. It would be more fitting if the anti water in pipes folks used it as evidence that they could/would/should wash their pipes with water... but, I am certain that the phobia of rinsing their pipes out with water goes far beyond rational thought or reason. Just like you can't explain to a right winger or a liberal why their ideas have no basis in reality.

    Michael
    Posted 5 months ago #
  48. jpmcwjr

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    Sorry, it did not shock nor even surprise me. I've dropped hot pipes into swimming pools to only temporary grief, left them out in the rain along with a cake whose recipe I'd lost, and recently put four pipes through a dishwasher.

    As to commenting, I thought I had! I am very glad you did the experiment, as it may encourage some to try to clean their pipes differently.

    Boy, did it do a number on the finish! How about applying a thin coat of mineral oil on stummel and stem, and posting a pic?

    The hot tap water flush will not remove a finish unless it's one that'd come off in the hands over a few weeks. And one can be careful and not let it run over the exterior.

    In all, A+, all in the name of science and furthering the art and science of pipe smoking.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  49. crashthegrey

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    I am more intrigued by the lack of response. I have been neutral in that I don't really want to clean my pipes with water for no good reason, but I always wondered what extreme water exposure would do. I am honestly surprised at the lack of much of any effect besides the finish.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  50. cosmicfolklore

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    Just this morning my wife said that she had found one of my favorite Nordings in the yard, and it has rained here every day for quite a while. The pipe had suffered no damage at all. I'm smoking it now. I also smoke my pipes while in the hot tub all of the time for years, with no negative results. It just doesn't register to me that water could do any damage at all.

    I have just always been amazed at the fishing stories I hear at The Briary that end with... and then my pipe hit the water... with everyone wincing and consoling the story teller. It has just never made any sense to me why someone would think that a pipe would be destroyed by getting dropped into water. The storyteller always gets put on the spot when I ask what water did to the pipe. It's like questioning the truthfulness of that two foot catfish he is talking about.
    Where do people get these ideas? Is there some new pipe smoker booklet that says, "never take a stem out of a warm pipe, and never, ever let it get wet"?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  51. didimauw

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    I had a Dr Grabow go through the washing machine once, and I believe it smoked better after the fact lol.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  52. crashthegrey

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    Where do people get these ideas? Is there some new pipe smoker booklet that says, "never take a stem out of a warm pipe, and never, ever let it get wet"?
    There is, and it is called the internet. You'll hear those things repeated so often as a newbie, but never even really pay any attention to them later.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  53. unadoptedlamp

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    As a confirmed water cleaner, I agree with cosmic and jpm.

    I think that perhaps the people who clean their pipes with water have already confirmed for themselves that nothing bad happens. I had a bamboo shank loosen once. I have no idea if it was related to water. Could have been poorly glued on. That's it.

    It's just not surprising that water doesn't kill wood that quickly. The freezing? I thought perhaps it could crack the shank or something, because of the expansion from inside.

    But... fantastic experiment. It was interesting to see and check back on. You beat the hell out of that pipe and it kept going. Not a rigorously controlled experiment, really, but it adds to the evidence.

    Wood is tough stuff. It's been confirmed in other interesting engineering experiments where wood outperforms steel for durability and wear and tear, for example.

    I'm not surprised at all that wood is durable. A lot of people already knew this, particularly engineers.

    Water being kryptonite to pipes just a weird myth in the "pipe community" - whatever that is. I don't put much stock in to what the "pipe community" puts out because frankly, I'm not sure it's represented by enough diversity or fact checking to be a reliable source of information... which is why you read about all of this crazy shit and odd techniques that seem detached from reality.

    Take it all with a grain of salt or a drop of water. The sacred cows will always live on.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  54. sablebrush52

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    It's kinda odd the water rinse folks haven't commented on this. I understand they think this is purely "entertainment", were they only saying this because they were "couching" their beliefs if this went sideways?

    I just glanced at this thread. Since all of this bears no resemblance to an actual warm water flush, there's nothing to comment on, so it is entertainment and good entertainment at that. But I get the reticence of those phobic about the process. John had been evangelizing cleaning his pipes in water for a year before I took the plunge.

    Having performed this procedure hundreds of times I have no doubts about it.

    I'll be interested in hearing what the anti-water crowd have to say after they have actually tried it and found it harmful. Until then, they don't really know what they're talking about.

    It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt. - Mark Twain

    It is pointless to argue with a fanatic since a dim bulb can't be converted into a searchlight. - Jesse Silver
    Posted 5 months ago #
  55. User has not uploaded an avatar

    jeff540

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    This thread was a great read, thanks Tim! I converted to water cleaning a few months ago. My pipes have no sour tastes, never need the monthly salt soak overnight (which now seems so ludicrous), cake develops very slow, and best of all: whisky is only for drinking now

    Posted 5 months ago #
  56. seldom

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    This is interesting and I have started trying the warm water rinse on a couple of my pipes. A big Vauen pot is one of them and I seem to notice that the finish has dulled somewhat but that may just be my imagination. If a warm water flush works without negative consequences it could make cleaning easier and perhaps do a more thorough job. I'm wary of using alcohol on my pipes because I've had some spill over the bowl and that definitely did impact the finish; no chance of it just being my imagination.
    In summary, thank you for torturing your pipes for our collective edification. The results are helping to inform my future pipe cleaning habits.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  57. cosmicfolklore

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    Seldom, if the finish is a thick layer of wax, then warm water will create a haze, which is where the wax melts, but as the outer layer of wax cools, it does so at a different rate than the inside of the layer. Just give the pipe a brisk buffing with the towel right after the rinse. This will bring the layer of wax to a thinner, tighter layer, and eventually the wax won't haze as it gets drawn tight over the surface. A thick layer of wax is more susceptible to losing it's shine after smoking also.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  58. judcasper

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    Well, it's backed up my beliefs - for what they're worth - that a pipe will come to no harm after coming into contact with the old H2O.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  59. seanv

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    Thanks for the experiment, it was an enjoyable read. I’ve washed a few pipes with the hot water rinse and surprise...... nothing bad happened. Lots of lurkers will read this and maybe it can help some new smokers out

    Posted 5 months ago #
  60. cosmicfolklore

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    Well, since no one else is claiming it, I want one dollar for everyone who still posts that water is dangerous everytime someone mentions water rincing. I need me some new Beckers, and I predict it will still come up again and again.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  61. trouttimes

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    Ok you guys convinced me. I just spent several hours washing a batch of pipes. I must say, they do smell better and it doesn't seem to have harmed them at all.

    Posted 5 months ago #
  62. davet

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    I'm kinda disappointed that there was so little change in the pipe I didn't have a dog in the water v.s no water discussion but I thought there would be something other than the finish .

    Posted 5 months ago #
  63. judcasper

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    Well, since no one else is claiming it, I want one dollar for everyone who still posts that water is dangerous everytime someone mentions water rincing.

    Allow me to climb up on the fence and put this out there; what about pipes made from different woods? Does the fact that one pipe, made from one species of wood, tell us that all pipes, regardless of material, will survive just as bravely?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  64. ashdigger

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    Jud, I only own pipes made of briar. I owned a Morta, but since its bog oak, Im sure it will do just fine. I've owned one olive wood pipe, but it was a piece of garbage without the water torture.

    So, any volunteers for other woods?

    Posted 5 months ago #
  65. haparnold

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    Honestly. I don't think other woods are that pertinent.

    It certainly wouldn't hurt to do other woods/other materials, but I'm willing to bet north of 90% of pipes in the world are briar, and I don't think our original group of agitators um, innovators were advocating for washing cobs or meerschaum.

    De Gustibus Non Est Disputandum
    Posted 5 months ago #

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