Get a meer and clean out the shank with Everclear before you smoke it. Blow out any excess meerschaum dust. Fire up. Unless the carver got wax inside the bowl or shank, the number of bowls required for break in is a big, fat zero.
Well let me elaborate on that a little more. I'm always checking out pipes for sale, new or estate, briar, meers.. But right now I have a Stefano & a Peterson I'm breaking in. I really don't mind the break in process, the act of building a cake will only improve the smoking pleasure, it's all good. As far as pipes, pipe tools, tabac, humidors, racks etc for sale...it's almost an obsession to check it all out!