I've read about people poking a hole through the bottom of a cob and how the ones with the wooden bottom were a better deal. I never had the experience. I have four Legends with the natural bottom. I'm smoking one now and I almost put my thumb up through the base! I've been smoking this one for about five months. I checked the others and they're all solid. This one I'm smoking though is very mushy, not wet but soft and I really think I can put my finger through it. So, I know this is a fairly common finding but it is a question of quality control since my other Legends don't have this? Is it the climate, perhaps...switching from semi-humid Boston to totally hot and humid New Orleans (doubtful since the others don't have it)? The results of buying a natural product? I tend toward the last explanation and I don't mind. I'll try giving the pipe a week or so's rest to see what happens. Will it be saved? Is anyone so against the Legend that they'll only smoke Diplomats (with the wooden plug)? There seems to be a three dollar price difference so if one out of four goes soft after five months, I figure it's still a safe bet. Thanks.