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How to remove a bad ghost from an estate pipe?

Discussion in 'Pipes' started by Dave Dueck, Feb 20, 2013.

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  1. Thuber88

    Thuber88 Well-Known Member

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    The estate Pete I got was cleaned by the seller for me, no charge, its like brand new , smokes great!
     
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  2. JRobert

    JRobert Serious Cat Forum Guide

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    My best smoker is a no-name billiard "restored" estate pipe -- topped, cleaned, and refinished by the ebay seller. And it was not expensive. They're out there, if you're patient and willing to take a chance...
     
  3. Thuber88

    Thuber88 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, my Pete with silver was under $40.
    I dont think many new pipes will be close to that nice in that range
     
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  4. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer Member

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    Dave, I am really glad your pipe turned out half decently.

    cigrmaster: I did not say that all estates are past any sense of hope.:)
     
  5. Riff Raff

    Riff Raff Active Member

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    As pipe buyer who can pretty much only find something interesting via the estate market, I've learned to clean my purchases and like Spillproof, very rarely been stumped. I acquire two types of retorts this year, but I'd rather not use them on my stems or bowl finish. Successive soaks always have done the trick for me. FWIW, I use Everclear and 91% iso and find no advantage to either.
     
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  6. SmokeyJoe

    SmokeyJoe Active Member

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    Yep, I learned the hard way, always use the retort BEFORE cleaning and buffing the exterior briar and stem...
     
  7. Riff Raff

    Riff Raff Active Member

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    If I use a retort again, I would most likely buff on a thick coating of carnuba, do the retort, than hand polish the carnuba off, just to give the briar some protection.
     
  8. Russell Hartman

    Russell Hartman Stay Silver

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    First I will say--I do not like retorts. Yes they work, but as outlined by Spillproof in detail is the cleaning method that has worked for me. Although retorts work I hate the way the alcohol boils out over the pipe.
    I can honestly say that several stem soaks, polish, and go. Then multiple sea salt & Everclear treatments, reaming etc.--just like Spillproof described has worked for me.
    I know folks really like the retorts & I agree they boil out the gunk, but I can say---patience is the key---let the salt & alcohol do its job---draw out the gunk, and wait as needed.
    I have seen guys take a pipe with really nice finish that under normal circumstances really not need much exterior work, and -- my goodness--after the retort boil over the bowl finish is ruined, and now needs a bunch of work to bring back the finish.
    I would only use a retort on a pipe that is in a condition that it is almost too far gone.
    Again--read what Spillproof has written up in his post. This has worked for me.
    Also---buying estate pipess from reputable folks will pretty much allow one to get decent pipes without worries.
     
  9. SmokeyJoe

    SmokeyJoe Active Member

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    Sounds like Operator Error to me.
    I've used the retort method on over 50 estate pipes in the last few years, and none of them had their finish ruined. If done properly, the only issue may be that some alcohol vapor will collect on the rim, which if left unattended can dull the finish. There can also be some dulling of the stem where the retort tubing connects. Both of these issues can easily be corrected with a buffing wheel.
    I've learned to employ the retort earlier in the cleaning process because I only want to buff the pipe once.

    Here's my one and only youtube contribution:


    And just in case you think I have some super-slick shop in which I do my re-furbs, here's some pics of my "shop" and buffing wheel set-up....
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I'm not saying everybody should use a retort, but when used in conjunction with a thorough cleaning, it should exorcise your ghost.
     
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  10. Linus

    Linus Member

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    Really good youtube clip, not close to as much fiddle as i imagined :)
     
  11. JRobert

    JRobert Serious Cat Forum Guide

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    I have not used a retort, but I thought the idea was that alcohol vapor goes into the pipe, not liquid alcohol...
     
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