How to Re-Hydrate Pipe Tobacco

Log in

SmokingPipes.com Updates

Watch for Updates Twice a Week

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

Tobacco Treasures Ad

AJL67

Lifer
May 26, 2022
1,836
9,917
Florida - Space Coast
Yes i've smoked cigars for decades and brought back a few dry sticks but nothing like this im thinking this is going to be a test and "just to see" but it's never really going to be close to what it was.
 

LimestoneCowboy

Might Stick Around
Sep 17, 2021
77
145
NV, USA
Per the article: "The proper RH of pipe tobacco is only around 10-14%." This seems off to me because 1) in most areas the average RH in the atmosphere is much higher, and 2) RH refers to atmospheric moisture, not moisture in a solid (which is "moisture content"). I have read that the moisture content of pipe tobacco should be around 18-22%. So, about 1/5 of its weight is water.

In any case, the article is still very helpful. The RH where I live is very low, and I have some spritzing to do. I have been sealing my tobacco in mylar bags, but have a pound of flake in one of those hinged and gasketed glass jars that's become downright crispy in just a year.
 

avail

Starting to Get Obsessed
Oct 13, 2015
126
650
Michigan
I am definitely not an expert on this but a slice of white bread has help me save some old Sugar Barrel.
At college, a kid in the dorm used to get care packages, often containing a tin of cookies. The lid was closed on a sheet of wax paper, underneath that was a slice of bread covering the cookies. The slice of bread was always dried/stale, while the cookies were fresh and delicious.

Once I tried putting a small piece of bread in a tin of SG Grousemoor, didn't really care for the way it turned out.
 

avail

Starting to Get Obsessed
Oct 13, 2015
126
650
Michigan
In my experience. Rehydrate tobacco with distilled water makes the taste of tobacco fades.
I don't know if that is how I'd describe it, but I've never liked the result of rehydrating.

Having said that, I have some 5-year old Morning Smoke that has been jarred and seems pretty crispy, but I love the flavor of it. (And I can still manage to get it to gurgle...I could get a bowl of dust to gurgle...LOL)
 

nolan613

Starting to Get Obsessed
May 21, 2019
128
123
76
Augusta, GA
Years ago, before bulk barns, we cured tobacco on sticks. After curing we had to open the barn doors during the night to let the leaves obtain some moisture and become pliable so they didn't crumble while unloading the barn and hauling to the pack house. That's how I handle dry pipe tobacco. I pour the crunchy tobacco into my wife's biscuit pan and place it on the porch overnight. By early next morning, if pinched between the fingers, it will hold together and be soft. I just place it in a mason jar and seal it up. This works because the tobacco will only absorb the moisture amount it needs and is never introduced to liquid All that's left is washing biscuit pan and slipping it back in the kitchen before she's any the wiser.
Having grown up in South Carolina I remember that tobacco farming ranked up there with cotton in the 60's. Any tobacco farmer of any size had their own barns where they hung the tobacco to dry. Even as a youngster in the 50's & 60's the aroma in those barns were things of fond memories.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jpmcwjr

jpmcwjr

Moderator
Staff member
May 12, 2015
22,282
21,403
Carmel Valley, CA
Per the article: "The proper RH of pipe tobacco is only around 10-14%." This seems off to me because 1) in most areas the average RH in the atmosphere is much higher, and 2) RH refers to atmospheric moisture, not moisture in a solid (which is "moisture content"). I have read that the moisture content of pipe tobacco should be around 18-22%. So, about 1/5 of its weight is water.
The first sentence is so wrong it's criminal. 10-14% is the moisture content; RH @70º would be a range of perhaps 60-80% RH. There are tables showing conversions, but my example is made up.
In any case, the article is still very helpful. The RH where I live is very low, and I have some spritzing to do. I have been sealing my tobacco in mylar bags, but have a pound of flake in one of those hinged and gasketed glass jars that's become downright crispy in just a year.
Not a surprise, and not confirmation that bail tops are poor containers for tobacco: They are quite good except for l/t storage, but also if used for a bowl full a few times a week or more.

Thing is, every time you open the top, the air, starting at, say 75% RH, is replaced by air that's 30% RH. Before long if jar is opened frequently, the RH of the tobacco drops pretty quick. And a year is a long time!
 

DrHoo

Lurker
Sep 13, 2022
2
0
I prefer tobacco on the dryer side and will only risk rehydration if I have several ounces; enough to absorb moisture. I spread it out on brown paper and give it the finest mist of distilled water, then leave it for a day or two and put it back in the jar only when I'm sure it isn't too wet. My grandad smoked Sir Walter Raleigh all day and seldom let a can go dry buy, when he did, he put a small slice of apple in the can and left it till he was satisfied. I've never tried that but it worked for him.
 
Sep 4, 2022
34
71
35
Hercules
We’ve had a crazy hot summer where I live, and my tobacco is in the garage which is insulated and I open the door so it’s fairly conditioned, but still not ideal. I’ve been breathing into tins and bags and it’s worked surprisingly well. Some are noticeably more moist.
 

vates

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 16, 2019
213
266


Alright, it worked like a charm!

First impressions upon opening the tray: the smell is divine!

These coins of Peterson SR 2018 which were on the verge of crumbling into dust are now better than new.
Two days would've been enough for my needs probably.

Additional observations:
- new IKEA trays hold their seal really tight;
- slightly peated sherry finished Islay single malts probably work better than purified water ;)
 

hyperstar

Starting to Get Obsessed
Jun 10, 2022
129
285
Formosa, Taiwan
Wow. I've never thought you can use tray sealers to hydrate tobaccos. What a great improvement.

The combinations between Peated whisky and English blend tobaccos are truly amazing.

Smoke first, then drink your whisky. The peated flavor will be erase by tobacco, making the whisky sweeter. Yet, when you breathe out through your nose. The original flavor will come back again.
 
  • Like
Reactions: vates