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Professor's Pipe Sweetening Treatment

(11 posts)
  • Started 6 years ago by rmason
  • Latest reply from dennisfbird
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    rmason

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    I just finished reading about the Professor's Pipe Sweetening Treatment and want to give it a try to my pipes, my question is since I cannot acquire Ever-clear, due to age, will isopropyl alcohol work instead? Also what would the best advice for thoroughly cleaning shanks.

    Ron
    Posted 6 years ago #
  2. pipestud

    pipestud

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    Howdy Ron,

    You'll sure open a can of worms with the isopropyl alcohol question. Some love the stuff and others warn of it being a poison. I'll only say that the warning on the labels saying not to consume is enough to keep the stuff out of my pipes.

    I'll avoid any flaming arrows one way or the other by just saying that most of the professional refurbishers will tell you that 190 Proof EverClear is the only way to go. It cleans quickly and thoroughly without leaving any taste (or poison) in the bowl, shank or stem. I think some states won't even allow EverClear higher than 151 proof to be sold.

    Maybe you can find a sympathetic buddy who is of legal age.

    Best,
    Pipestud

    Pipestud
    Posted 6 years ago #
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    rmason

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    So then if I were to acquire alcohol would other types work or would it bee best if it were the high proof stuff?

    Posted 6 years ago #
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    chervokas

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    I don't drink and won't keep Everclear in the house, so I use 91 or 99 percent isopropyl alcohol (not 70% -- you want the least amount of water so 99% or the high proof potable stuff, and not denatured alcohol) -- a small amount on bristle pipe cleaners or a brush to clean shanks and stems, followed by dry pipe cleaners, repeating until the two come out relatively clean -- I never want the shank really to be wet or remain wet -- then I use compressed air to blow dry the shank and stem, then let the pipe air out for a day or two before smoking. Never had an issue with taste and certainly not with any toxicity. I wouldn't dump the alcohol in the pipe. But used in small quantities on a swab, and dried immediately (the alcohol evaporates very quickly, esp. the 99% stuff), it's fine. I don't do it with every smoke....maybe every 5 or 10...and I'm careful not to get any alcohol on the finished exterior of the pipe.

    Posted 6 years ago #
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    Anonymous

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    since I cannot acquire Ever-clear, due to age, will isopropyl alcohol work instead?

    I use Everclear now -- I used to use Bacardi 151 rum, because Everclear isn't available in liquor stores where I live -- but I found a bottle of Everclear at the US Coast Guard Exchange (kind of like a "ship's store") in a nearby town recently.

    I'm with PipeStud -- I won't use anything I can't drink (not that drinking 190 proof straight is a good idea!) --
    BUT -- I think you're fine using 91% to 95% isopropyl alcohol to clean your pipes.

    If you do it right, you're only using a little bit of alcohol anyway -- dipping the clean shank brush and pipe cleaner(s) and scrubbing away. Once you're done cleaning the pipe, let it dry at least overnight -- the high alcohol content evaporates quickly.

    Be carefil not to get any alcohol on the stummel (wood) exterior,it could harm the finish.

    Oh, and don't drink it

    Go for it. Just make sure you get the 91%-95% stuff -- it's all alcohol and the rest is distilled water, NOT the 70% "rubbing alcohol -- not only will the 70% not evaporate nearly as well, the 70% has a bunch of other chemicals in it (great for back rubs, pipes not so much).

    I suggest going to a drug store and asking the pharmacist for it to make sure you get the right stuff.

    Good luck, mason, and let us know how you make out!

    Posted 6 years ago #
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    Anonymous

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    Funny... I have always used rubbing alcohol to clean the airway and inside of the shank.
    I don't think my mental condition has deteriorated over the last 25 years or so?

    Or am I just in denial?

    Posted 6 years ago #
  7. pipestud

    pipestud

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    So then if I were to acquire alcohol would other types work or would it bee best if it were the high proof stuff?

    The higher the alcohol content the better. I've heard that Rum can get pretty revved up but just don't know what's next on the ladder a step down from EverClear.

    Pipestud

    Posted 6 years ago #
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    rmason

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    Thanks guys, I am going to give the isopropyl alcohol a shot (not literally) on one of my not so favorite pipes and see how it turns out.

    ~Ron

    Posted 6 years ago #
  9. cortezattic

    Cortez

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    Don't worry about the toxicity of trace amounts of isopropyl alcohol endangering your health.
    It's used for rub-downs, in lotions and cosmetics where more would be absorbed into the skin than through your pipe.
    Anyway remember, you're sucking in nicotine, tars, oils and carcinogenic organic volatiles every time you light up.
    A leftover molecule or two of isopropyl alcohol is the least threatening thing coming through your pipe!

    I find myself sitting idly on the line dividing past and future,
    as if I could kill time without injuring eternity. -- Thoreau
    Posted 6 years ago #
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    rmason

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    Well I finished the treatment and now I get to play the waiting game, I tried it with two of my pipes, the first was with the rubbing alcohol and the other was with some rum I "borrowed" from my dad so here's hoping for the best.
    P.S. Thanks Cortez for because that's all I need was one less thing to worry about lol.

    ~Ron

    Posted 6 years ago #
  11. dennisfbird

    dennisfbird

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    How do you plan on returning the rum you borrowed, hmmm. I have used rubbing alcohol and it seems to dry out soggy bowls and leaves no aftertaste. I do wait till I can no longer smell the alcohol.

    Posted 5 years ago #

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