Pipes Magazine » General Pipe Smoking Discussion

Search Forums  
   
Tags:  No tags yet. 

Who Builds Cake In Their Pipes?

(47 posts)
  • Started 3 years ago by cigrmaster
  • Latest reply from cossackjack
  1. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    The question of cake on another thread has inspired me to find out what the percentage of cake builders is to guys who wipe their bowls after every smoke not allowing a cake to build. Almost every guy I learned from in the beginning of my pipe smoking told me a nice hard cake about a dime's thickness will protect your pipe, make it taste better and make for a cooler smoke. I have always built a cake in my pipe and would never think of not doing so. For me cake is easy to take care of when it gets to be too much. A pipe knife or even sometimes a reamer are the two things I use.

    It wasn't till I came here that I heard of people who wiped their bowls clean and had no cake in their pipes.

    Harris
    Posted 3 years ago #
  2. User has not uploaded an avatar

    aldecaker

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2015
    Posts: 4,474

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I always wipe the bowl with a paper towel after a smoke, but cake still builds anyway. Just a hell of a lot slower. (I am a cake minimalist, so this works out well for me.)

    A man who serves his country is a patriot. A man who serves his government is an employee. The two are not always the same thing.
    Posted 3 years ago #
  3. pipestud

    pipestud

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Dec 2012
    Posts: 1,740

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    What aldecaker said. Twisting a paper towel down into the bowl after every smoke will absorb any moisture and help the pipe stay dry with no gooey build-up in the bottom. And while a cake will still form, it will be much tighter and develop much more slowly. I do like just a little cake (not as thick as a dime though). Excess cake takes away from the flavor of the tobacco and I've seen enough cracked bowls from super caked up pipes to know that it is true that the expansion and contraction of the cake can indeed be a stronger force of nature than even briar.

    Pipestud
    Posted 3 years ago #
  4. mikestanley

    mikestanley

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2009
    Posts: 1,358

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I like a little cake in the bowl, provided it is hard and not spotty. In my experience, what is odd is that some pipes seem to build cake faster than others do. I have an older Charatan Special Prince I really have to keep an eye on. The pipe seems to build cake almost overnight. I smoke mostly Va/Oriental and Virginia or VaPers so, aside from brand names, the blends are pretty similar. I tend to have god luck forming that thin, solid cake by using a doubled over pipe cleaner every 2nd or 3rd smoke. Not too much reaming, except with that Charatan with this method. Not the thickness of a dime but it is enough. Foe me, a cake on the bottom of the bowl is the key to giving a pipe the best chance to be a good smoker.

    Mike S.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  5. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    When I smoke a bowl, I let it sit over night to let the cake harden. The next day I will double over a soft pipe cleaner and gently wipe out the bowl of ash and any loose tobacco. A dime is just a very loose measurment as who the hell can put a dime in the pipe and compare the thickness.

    I also have pipes that seem to build cake faster. I have a Rad Dublin that I have trimmed the cake on more times than any of my pipes. I wonder if maybe a conical bowl buiids it faster. Someone may want to do some research on this subject.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  6. jefff

    jefff

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2015
    Posts: 1,945

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Add me to aldecaker and pipestud. When i find cake thicker than a dime I ream it down to about half that thick.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  7. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2015
    Posts: 13,292

    online

    Login to Send PM

    I am pretty sure the cake will be as hard as it needs to be as soon as the pipe cools. When I am home I tend to rinse the bowl with hot water, then dry with paper towel in chamber, pipe cleaner the usual. My cake is thin but effective enough for my druthers.

    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 3 years ago #
  8. didimauw

    didimauw

    Mod
    Joined: Jul 2013
    Posts: 2,967

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I like a fairly decent cake in my pipes. As Long As it's even to the bottom.

    "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 3 years ago #
  9. clickklick

    clickklick

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2014
    Posts: 1,691

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I build cake. When it gets to about the thickness of a quarter, I ream it down close to wood and start over again. I don't wipe the inside of the bowl with anything. When I ream they all get some everclear.

    Hobbyist Pipemaker - Carmette Pipes
    Posted 3 years ago #
  10. perdurabo

    perdurabo

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2015
    Posts: 2,774

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I wipe the bowl out after every smoke with a paper towel. After about 5-7 smokes I use Q-Tips and Golden Grain, then remove any cake build up that the paper towel missed.

    It's not my position nor want to help another man. It's his responsibility to help himself, as where he can learn to dig down deep enough to save himself. -I. Kidd
    Posted 3 years ago #
  11. fishingandpipes

    fishingandpipes

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Aug 2013
    Posts: 655

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    hang on

    When I am home I tend to rinse the bowl with hot water

    what?

    Posted 3 years ago #
  12. warren

    warren

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Sep 2013
    Posts: 7,527

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I do! I do!

    A man without a shillelagh is a man without an expedient.
    Posted 3 years ago #
  13. rcstan

    rcstan

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2012
    Posts: 1,543

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I keep a little self-occuring cake that gets trimmed regularly to the thicknes of a sheet of paper, or about as thin as the precarb layer in let's say, a Peterson. I never go back to bare wood because I will have to basically re-break that pipe in.
    As for rinsing bowls, every now and then when restoring a pipe that has petrified thick cake, some water in the bowl helps break the stuff out easier and quicker. I don't see how it would hurt one's pipe, other than the stain, as long as you don't reload and smoke right after you took it out of the sink!!!!

    Posted 3 years ago #
  14. jazz

    jazz

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2014
    Posts: 810

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I'm not that big on cake in my pipe. I give the pipe a rub out with a folded pipe cleaner after each smoke. The cake still forms but it takes a while. Can't say I remember how thick a dime is but mine gets cleaned out before it gets thicker than a 5 pence piece.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  15. hawky454

    hawky454

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2016
    Posts: 2,907

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I absolutely keep a cake in my bowls. It noticeably smokes much better when I do.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  16. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    Question for the non cake guys. Have any of you tried building a thicker cake to see how your pipes smoked? Also did someone suggest this method to you or did you just come by it yourselves?

    Posted 3 years ago #
  17. User has not uploaded an avatar

    aldecaker

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2015
    Posts: 4,474

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I have, in the past, kept a lot more cake in my pipes. The reason I got away from it is that the cake seems to hold all the nastiness that I spend so much effort cleaning out of the rest of the pipe. Ghosting lives in cake, moisture lingers in cake, and cake holds that ashy "not-so-fresh" ( :wink:) flavor. After a thin "break-in" layer, the caking process is complete for me.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  18. jazz

    jazz

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2014
    Posts: 810

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Question for the non cake guys. Have any of you tried building a thicker cake to see how your pipes smoked? Also did someone suggest this method to you or did you just come by it yourselves?

    I have and I no longer do for the same reasons aldecaker and pipestud mention above me. I'm not saying my way is the right way but it is the way I have found works best for me.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  19. aristokles

    aristokles

    Senior Member
    Joined: Jan 2011
    Posts: 414

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    A dime's worth is about right for me, perhaps a wee bit less if I can maintain that little. Any greater depth and it seems to become counter-productive, which has been well noted above.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  20. jefff

    jefff

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2015
    Posts: 1,945

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I discovered it by accident maybe 15 years ago. I have a heavily caked pipe, one I had let go a bit too far. When I reamed it, I thought I had over reamed it, maybe half a mil.

    Then I smoked it and the taste was so much better I was surprised. I went through all my pipes and did the same. They all tasted better to me.

    So now I do the paper towel thing and ream when it hits a dime.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  21. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    Another question for no cake guys, do you dedicate your pipes. I have never had a cake that tasted like ash or fell apart. The cake on my pipes is rock hard due to the blends I smoke. I have always dedicated my pipes since the beginning. I have no idea who told me, but I know it was not pipestud as he knows squat. I never deal with ghosting because I dedicate. The only time I dealt with a ghost was when I smoked a Lakeland blend, afer only one bowl, the pipe was shot.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  22. User has not uploaded an avatar

    aldecaker

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2015
    Posts: 4,474

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Yes, I dedicate (more or less). I have one that I reserve for the occasional aromatic, several for Lat-heavies, and several for Va/VaPer/VaBur. That being said, I will smoke PA/CH/ERR in any of them.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  23. jazz

    jazz

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2014
    Posts: 810

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Yes I dedicate. Different pipes for Va, VaPer, VaBur and Lats. I don't really smoke aro's so don't have any pipes for those. Though I do like J.F.Germain's Rich Dark Flake which is one I suppose. That gets smoked in my VaBur pipes.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  24. pipestud

    pipestud

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Dec 2012
    Posts: 1,740

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I have no idea who told me, but I know it was not pipestud as he knows squat. - cgarmaster

    I know that I don't know squat (about much of anything) but at least give me credit for acting like I do.

    Squatstud

    Posted 3 years ago #
  25. drwatson

    drwatson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Aug 2010
    Posts: 1,806

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Cake builder here! I find it does smoke better with cake..

    John
    Posted 3 years ago #
  26. jefff

    jefff

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2015
    Posts: 1,945

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I dedicate in a general way. I have pipes for Latakia blends, Va's and VaPers.

    Sometimes though, its nice to smoke a Va or Vaper in a Latakia bowl....adds a little something. But never the other way around.

    I let the pipe tell me what it wants. When I get a new one i go through a set list of tobaccos. It takes about two weeks usually, then I know what the pipe wants.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  27. ray47

    ray47

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jul 2015
    Posts: 1,156

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I like a very thin cake, so I lightly wipe the inside of each bowl after each smoke with a bent pipe cleaner.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  28. sallow

    sallow

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2013
    Posts: 1,177

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Yeah I like a little cake.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  29. mikestanley

    mikestanley

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2009
    Posts: 1,358

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    From my experience, too much cake makes the bowl smaller which makes my smoke shorter which irritates me. (lol) Do folks who intentionally keep their pipes "cakeless" worry about burn out? I think it would be in the back of my mind. Oh and, of course, no cake in the one meer I have. It's a meerqueen falcon bowl. It gets the treatment after every smoke/cool off.

    Mike S.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  30. docspipe

    docspipe

    Junior Member
    Joined: Dec 2014
    Posts: 96

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    The only time I wipe out a bowl after a smoke is if the smoke was too wet after smoking. As a result, I usually allow the cake to form on its own and at its own rate. When I find the heel getting too tight I use one of those reamers that have the small spikes on them. This seems to keep the cake just right for me and in nearly 40 years of puffing I only had one burn out. It was a brand new Savinelli Bing's Favorite. Burned out after three smokes so may have been a defective bowl. This was 20 years ago or so and it was replaced by the local tobacconist at the time no questions asked.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  31. peteguy

    peteguy

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jan 2012
    Posts: 1,127

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Very thin cake here and I wipe out the bowl with a folded cleaner after every smoke.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  32. derfargin

    derfargin

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2014
    Posts: 2,099

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I don't mind a little carbon build up as it's just the buy product of smoking a pipe. If I had a preference I'd wipe my pipes out after every bowl, but I'm just too lazy to go through all the trouble. I think many new pipers are overly concerned with building cake on a pipe. I've seen so many posts on how to build cake, and why I can't build cake very well with _______ type of blend.

    Just fill it and smoke it. If it carbon builds up, ream it back repeat. No need to break out the micrometers either.

    There are 10 types of people in this world, those who understand binary, and those who don't.
    Posted 3 years ago #
  33. User has not uploaded an avatar

    frozenchurchwarden

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2014
    Posts: 1,980

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    On my last two pipes I put a few layers of honey on the bowl. I think I've done a couple of pipes without doing anything special, but on these thin wall custom overbore pipes I'm trying to be extra cautious.
    If it has a coating from the factory I don't give it a second thought.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  34. metalheadycigarguy

    metalheadycigarguy

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Apr 2012
    Posts: 2,667

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    After each smoke I clean my pipes with a pipe cleaner. I don't mind some cake, but I don't let it build up to much. If I get to much cake built up then I just take my old knife or my reaming tool and clean some cake out. The only pipe I don't let cake build up in is my meerschaum pipes as you're not suppose to let cake build up in meerschaum pipes.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  35. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    I know that I don't know squat (about much of anything) but at least give me credit for acting like I do

    Steve, I give you a ton of credit for fooling the masses. Who would have thunk, you have become the maven for aged tobacco, especially since all you smoke is Royal Yuck. Bravissimo.

    Looks like we have more cake builders than no cake builders. So what do the cake builders win, a cooler more flavorful smoke especially when we dedicate said caked pipes. So once again I have proven a scientific fact, we can have our cake and eat it to.

    Are you impressed yet?

    Posted 3 years ago #
  36. hawky454

    hawky454

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2016
    Posts: 2,907

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I'm impressed! BUT, when I ream my cake I'll send it your way so you can eat mine, too.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  37. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    hawky,

    I'm impressed! BUT, when I ream my cake I'll send it your way so you can eat mine, too.

    I always save my reamed cake so I can snort it, makes for a hell of a head rush.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  38. User has not uploaded an avatar

    aldecaker

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2015
    Posts: 4,474

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I don't know, Harris. According to majority rules, Lanes 1Q is the best pipe tobacco available in the US.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  39. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,651

    online

    Login to Send PM

    adle, sorry but Captain Black is the world leader and I should now as I have 150 pounds stashed.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  40. User has not uploaded an avatar

    aldecaker

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2015
    Posts: 4,474

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I thought they were the same thing? Oh well, I admire your dedication to cellaring, as well as your devil-may-care attitude towards tongue safety!

    Posted 3 years ago #
  41. samcoffeeman

    samcoffeeman

    Senior Member
    Joined: Apr 2015
    Posts: 451

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I like a nice cake. I feel like a nice cake not only protects the wood but also helps suck up any moisture and keeps an even temperature in the bowl. Just a supposition but my more heavily caked pipes seem to smoke more evenly.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  42. User has not uploaded an avatar

    pinem

    New Member
    Joined: Aug 2015
    Posts: 33

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Not sure if this question would derail the discussion, but when one talks of cake, are we talking about pure carbon? Do some people leave the tiny particles of burnt tobacco that are stuck to the side of the bowl, such that the resulting cake appears texured? I have been scraping the sides of the bowl smooth with wooden golf tee after each smoke, and then rub ash into any sticky spots, and it doesn't appear that cake builds up fast at all. I have never been able to clean a bowl sufficiently with just towels or pipe cleaners.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  43. User has not uploaded an avatar

    Anonymous

    Unregistered

    Posts: 1,480

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Boy, this is all over the place.

    All pipes but two are dedicated (every one to Embarcadero. Makes it easy to remember what goes in which one).

    (Past age 65 this is not the joke it might seem like).

    Ream immediately after smoking while residue is still warm-moist-soft.

    Paper-thin cake = maximum flavor. As Jefff notes. The late TJ Calia taught me that (Knox Board). He was right.

    When it gets past warm, set it down. When cool, fiddle with the pack as needed & proceed.

    Most pipes here run 50-75 years old. Smoked daily or more often. Any problems with cracks, char &c. were due to previous owners.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  44. pappymac

    pappymac

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2015
    Posts: 1,816

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I have minimal cake in all my pipes and don't let it get too thick (too thick being a measure of personal preference). I dedicate all my pipes to tobacco though I have found I enjoy aros in the smaller bowl pipes and generally only use them for aros.

    I am glad we have a good admin and responsible moderators.

    Heave to you dark colored ship under sail! Prepare to be boarded!
    Posted 3 years ago #
  45. averagegent

    averagegent

    Member
    Joined: Jan 2016
    Posts: 127

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    A prefer a thin, even cake... Though that doesn't always work for me because I tend to enjoy half bowls in the morning!

    Posted 3 years ago #
  46. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Aug 2013
    Posts: 18,162

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    o did someone suggest this method to you or did you just come by it yourselves?

    I just found that a thick dime+ thick cake detracted from my being able to taste the tobacco, plus it disrupts the amount of tobacco. And, it gives a false sense of security in that you can puff too hand burning your tongue and affecting the flavor... for me. No, I do not worry that I will burn the bowl, because I am not puffing too hard at all in the first place.
    On another thread I had mentioned that I suggested that newbies might try smoking a clay pipe instead of one of the corncobs or thicker pipes mentioned, to learn from the start how to keep the fire burning cool to gain the most from the smoking experience. Thicker pipes give you the sense that you can draw harder, smoke hotter. But, if you learn to smoke slowly, breath smoking very slowly, all of this cake talk becomes moot. Ironically, I find that smoking slowly actually forms cake faster, so thus the need to remove it more often.

    Michael
    Posted 3 years ago #
  47. cossackjack

    cossackjack

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Nov 2014
    Posts: 801

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nope, no cake. Clean the bowl with a U-shaped pipe cleaner, sometimes followed by a dry paper towel wipe, then lightly burnish the carbon layer with the back of the Czech pipe tool spoon. Deeper cleaning every 1-2 weeks with alcohol dipped pipe cleaners & shank brushes. I don't like stale pipes.

    "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.
    Specialization is for insects!" - Robert Heinlein
    Posted 3 years ago #

Reply

You must log in to post.

 

 

    Back To Top  | Back to Forum Home Page

   Members Online Now
   glassjapan, tbradsim1, spartacus, madox07, greeneyes, mrenglish, cigrmaster, danimalia, alaskanpiper, condorlover1, tkcolo, jpmcwjr