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Strange stem material?

Discussion in 'Pipes' started by Shane Arnett, Dec 22, 2011.

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  1. Shane Arnett

    Shane Arnett Member

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    I have these two old Carey Magic Inch briars with some slightly questionable stems... These are fairly old pipes, I think, yet they have very shiny stems with a few bite marks and scuffing. I'm nearly positive it's not vulcanite, or it probably would have oxidized by now. So I'm thinking some sort of acrylic, but it is relatively bendy (couldn't break this thing if you tried) and is very soft and comfortable. Thoughts? I would really like to know what it is because i would but a new pipe with this type stem in a heartbeat.
     
  2. Shane Arnett

    Shane Arnett Member

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    Okay I looked it up and it's called Zytel 101. Anyone know if it's an acceptable material? It seems very comfortable. Are there any current pipe makers that use something similar?
     
  3. HCraven

    HCraven Active Member

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    I don't know much about it, but as far as it being an acceptable material, I don't think there would be anything wrong with it. It's not part of the pipe that gets particularly hot, so I doubt that there would be any risks from weird gasses coming off of it. Carey Magic Inches were once rather popular pipes, and I know of no horror stories involving their stems, so if it's comfortable for you, what else matters?
     
  4. Scottly

    Scottly Member

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    Its used in knife handles, must be durable.
     
  5. Lestrade

    Lestrade Active Member

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    Sufficiently Durable for a pipe stem!
     
  6. Elwin

    Elwin Member

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    I have a rifle stock made out of it - tough stuff...
     
  7. desertmoon

    desertmoon Member

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    Zytel, in its' various flavors,is VERY tough stuff. It's also fairly heat resistant as plastics go. You should be fine.



    I looked up DuPont's specs....likely your stem is 101F, un-reinforced, low temp, fast molding thermoplastic. This is the base version of more complex, filled enforced plastics. This stuff will be tough and, once molded, plenty resistant to water vapor and tobacco oils. It's melting point is around 240 degrees Centigrade....you'll not be getting the stem anywhere near that hot...you should be good to go.
     
  8. Shane Arnett

    Shane Arnett Member

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    Anyone have any idea if any companies still use it? It is extremely comfortable and durable and tarnish resistant. It's really wonderful.
     
  9. SSGpiper

    SSGpiper Member

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    a simple google search got to a site you can buy rods from.....so yes, still being used
     
  10. t-bear

    t-bear Well-Known Member

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    I collect Carey "Magic Inch" pipes. Some of mine are from the fifties, others relatively new. All have the same stem material. The reason this is used in these pipes is it's strength...the stem walls can be very thin without collapsing, allowing them to fit over the "Magic Inch" assembly.

    With the proper paper sleeves, I find these pipes to be excellent smokers. Some will slip a straw of the right diameter over the "stinger" too. You have a couple of good pipes there.
     
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  11. Shane Arnett

    Shane Arnett Member

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    They're yours if you want them. They need some work, but are in okay shape.
     
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