Removing Cake from Meerschaum Chamber

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gnesiohamartolos

New member
Jan 10, 2014
48
2
Decades ago I purchased a dedicated meerschaum chamber reamer. Click the address for a picture of it on Flickr. Its performance is mediocre on thick, highly encrusted chambers but works well in keeping the chamber clean if used regularly. The fact that I have not seen anything like it on the market in recent years is probably an indication that it is the meerschaum pipe equivalent of Yugo automobile.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/41273109@N02/35033634131/in/dateposted-public/

 

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skaukatt

Senior Member
May 9, 2009
382
6
I went ahead and purchased the Decatur Pipe Shield and have been getting good results with it. As Russ said, it is longer, has those "flutes", like blood grooves on a knife, which allows the blades to flow more freely over the sides of the bowl as you scrape and the handle is longer which is also a good feature. As long as you are careful with what you are doing you'll get good results with this reamer.

 

snagstangl

Preferred Member
Jul 1, 2013
1,386
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I was cleaning out an estate CAO last night. I used some 600 grit sand paper along with some sanding screen from I had left from a drywall project. I used the screen, which was rougher, then smoothed it out with the 600 grit.
If the meer is not black on the outside, how much cake or coloring should you take off from the inside of the bowl? I ended up taking it to a light brown layer. At that point, I was wiping it out with a baby wipe or wet paper towel and it was sucking up the moisture pretty quick. I assumed that it was good good at that point.

 

warren

Preferred Member
Sep 13, 2013
8,670
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snagstngl: A reasonable assumption I think. Being overly aggressive is bad. Going slow is wise and should result in a nice smoking meerschaum.

 

midwestpipesmoker70

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2011
351
1
IL
My meers are clean so I just clean out with a dry paper towel after every bowl and it seems to be keeping the cake build up process at bay. If I do end up with some cake in the future I will keep some of the ideas in mind.

 

snagstangl

Preferred Member
Jul 1, 2013
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This is what I sanded it down to.

 

jzbdano

Member
Jul 7, 2016
244
563
I just purchased my first meer from a B&M today and the owner told me to use sand paper to remove cake. He has a couple decades of smoking experience with meers so I will try it when the time comes. I do plan on wiping the chamber out with a paper towel after each smoke.

 

snagstangl

Preferred Member
Jul 1, 2013
1,386
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Mike, I used my finger with sandpaper or sanding screen. Jpmcwjr, I plan on sanding the rim smooth. I used only water on the meer bowl and shank. Then alcohol on the acrylic stem.

 

metalheadycigarguy

Preferred Member
Apr 26, 2012
2,577
8
Washington State
The bowl looks perfectly fine to me at this point. A small layer of cake will not hurt the pipe, but its best to avoid cake from building up if you can. Some people that enjoy meerschaum pipes actually prefer a small layer of cake in the pipe, but again its best to avoid it if you can.

 

snagstangl

Preferred Member
Jul 1, 2013
1,386
374
I've read that it can weaken it and make it easier to crack. I don't think I was going to clean the crap out of the stem without a solvent. What do you use on yours?

 
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