Missouri Meerschaum offers the following tips to lengthen the life of your Clay Pipe and enrich your smoking experience!
1.) Don’t try to clean the stem hole with a pipe cleaner as clays were never designed for pipe cleaners, and pipe cleaners can easily get stuck in them and risk breaking the pipe.
2.) The proper way to hold a clay is by the stem near the base of the bowl. The bowls of clay pipes get very hot when smoking and therefore the bowls can’t be held in the bare hand when smoking like a cob or briar.
3.) Clay pipes are ideal for testing new tobacco blends as they will not ghost like a briar and you can get the true flavor of the blend.
4.) Clay pipes can be packed looser than most other pipes, but if packed tight then take long, slow draws through the stem.
5.) Clay pipes also tend to wick away moisture so they don’t suffer from the “gurgling” issue like briars and in that respect are more like cobs.
6.) Clays are obviously fragile, so they won’t stand up to the abuse of a cob or briar so care should be taken where you set your pipe down.
7.) To clean a clay pipe, gently wipe out the bowl with a slightly damp rag, or, for deeper cleaning, set it on the very top rack of your oven, as close to the top as possible, and set the oven to “Self-Cleaning” mode. This will eliminate any residue left in the pipe.
8.) The mouthpiece of the pipe may be tacky due to the ceramic wicking away moisture from the lips. If this becomes uncomfortable for the smoker, you may use natural beeswax to smear over the mouthpiece to eliminate that tackiness.
If you have additional questions or need advice, please call or email. We’re glad to help!