Bent or Straight Stem?

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wackytabacky

Lurker
Sep 7, 2023
22
45
Are bent stems a little harder to draw through vs a straight stem pipe?

Wondering what is best for a newb.

What are pros and cons of each type?

Thanks!
 
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grimpuffer

Can't Leave
Aug 29, 2016
350
2,416
Agree with the above

I find that bent pipes are easier to clench on a weight vs weight basis. Obviously a Devil Anse style straight stem or similar size is easy, but the further the bowl is away from your mouth, the more difficult it can be to clench, if you are a clencher.

Also, straight pipes pass a pipe cleaner much easier to wick up moisture if you get any gurgle or if you want to easily clean moisture right after you smoke.

Aesthetically, I prefer bent pipes as I always feel like they look better and I prefer to clench so my hands are free.

Ease of use and cleaning, I prefer straight.
 

wackytabacky

Lurker
Sep 7, 2023
22
45
Thanks for the informative replies. Ive been smoking a straight Nording which I like. I also started with some straight MM corncobs. Which I also like for what they are.

I so like to clench and have teeth marks on the MM stems. To give an idea of how I clench, the MM stems look like a dog got hold of them.

Ill try a bent stem next and maybe try a rubber tip on it?

Any thoughts on the rubber tips?
 
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For someone beginning, I don't think it is going to matter. They will both draw about the same. The biggest difference that bothers me, outside of the fact that I am just not that crazy about the looks, is that a bent stem will cause more turbulence in the draft. In the summer, you may not notice as much, but when it gets cold outside, turbulence and a cool stem is more likely to cause moisture to condense on the inner surface of the draft, causing a gurgle. Sure, sure, sure, if pushed and mot a perfectly polished straight draft will gurgle for the same reasons. But, a bent is way more likely to gurgle.

This of course can be offset by running a pipe cleaner down the draft while smoking, or drying the tobacco even more than you think necessary, and smoking slow. But, ultimately there is less room for error in a bent. Now, drying the tobacco doesn't 100% remove moisture from the smoke, as we all learned in Chemistry 101, water is the biproduct of combustion, so there's going to be moisture in the smoke regardless.

Although, most bents don't appeal to me at all visually, I do have a few that i enjoy smoking, mostly Danish bents. I just stay focused on not drawing on the smoke, and keeping it as slow as possible.
 

Frog Snacks

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 8, 2023
100
236
They both seem to smoke about the same for me, I kind of prefer straight stems just because I like the look of them, I tend to smoke about 80% pipe in hand and maybe 20% clenched, a straight pipe to me just feels nicer in the hand, and looks more simple. My 2 favorite pipes to smoke which I'm not even sure of which I prefer is a straight 4 Star Lee panel pipe, and a rusticated Bent Butz Choquin Alpine Major. So really to me a pipe is a pipe, if it smoke good for me then I like it, if it doesn't then I don't like it. I'm pretty good either way. Straight/bent or smooth/rusticated, I'm fine with each.

I know for a fact I don't like rubber tips, they just don't feel right in my mouth, too bulky.
 
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Nov 20, 2022
2,148
20,828
Wisconsin
Thanks for the informative replies. Ive been smoking a straight Nording which I like. I also started with some straight MM corncobs. Which I also like for what they are.

I so like to clench and have teeth marks on the MM stems. To give an idea of how I clench, the MM stems look like a dog got hold of them.

Ill try a bent stem next and maybe try a rubber tip on it?

Any thoughts on the rubber tips?
+1 to what @cosmicfolklore wrote.

MM have poor bits which are prone to tooth marks, good for practice but don't let it upset you.

Rubber tips are easier, but also tend to reinforce the habit of clenching. I say take the training wheels off once you get the 'hang' of smoking a pipe.
 

RookieGuy80

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 6, 2023
508
1,267
Maryland, United States
The bend in the stem doesn't effect the draw enough for me to notice. The biggest difference is how it hangs from my jaw. Straight pipes I tend to rest the bit against my upper jaw or palate and the stem resting on my lower jaw. The deep bent pipes don't touch my upper jaw, it hangs from the button hooked to my canine tooth.
 

Lucashly

Can't Leave
Jun 21, 2023
382
335
California
All things being equal physics would say there is a better draw with a straight pipe and stem. But I agree with you all it, it doesn't make a difference with a good pipe.
 

Bassman65

Can't Leave
Nov 30, 2022
318
571
Canada
Most of my pipes are bent. I love bent for clenching, however, can’t beat the look of my Bing’s favourite.