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Thoughts on oil cured briar??????????

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Russell Hartman

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#1
I was reading through a document on line that is Alfred Duhills application for a patent files on Oct. 14, 1918. Then patented May 25, 1920. It details his ideas on oil curing. My thoughts are actually a question I pose to you as a NON hostile debate. Some say it is only a process to faster cure the briar in question, and the benefits of the process soon wear off after a few smokes. Still I have read where folks say there is NO real benefit to this process. So my fellow & lady pipe smokers----what say you on this subject????? P.S.---just thought I'd start a new discussion subject.
 

jpberg

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#2
Okay, who wants to fight with me first?:) I smoke several oil cured pipes. Three are rather neutral and have been from the first bowl. One has given any tobacco smoked in it an added wonderful dimension, consistantly for the last couple of years - probably 300 -500 bowlfuls.

The last is recently acquired Radice, made in 2004. After a few puffs, I got "the taste", the same goshdarned dimension that the other provides.

In conclusion, I don't know what the hell I'm talking about. Other than that, I have two oil cured pipes from different makers and likely two different sources of briar that display very close to the same flavor characteristics. Somebody who knows something will have to step in now.
 

Russell Hartman

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#6
I can donate some differential oil out of some big CAT equipment too---old 50w final drive oil-the smell-------------OH GAWD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!-----get it on your clothes---the smell never comes out. I can't imagine what it would do for a briar pipe. The stench when the pipe was lit would scare off anything.
 

Russell Hartman

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#9
WOW---MisterMoo----------I was wondering if its normal when my pipe is bellowing out huge plooms of thick black/blue smoke like tires on fire.:haha:
 

jdto

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#10
I have an Ashton, which I believe are oil-cured. My noob tongue can't tell the difference. I guess I'll try consecutive smokes of the same blend in that with another pipe and see if there's a noticeable difference.
 

furious

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#11
Yes, oil curing adds something to the mix. Usually a nutty flavor that slowly dissipates after a few dozen bowls. After that, however, the effects of oil curing are unknown and highly speculative. I don't see any harm in it, and if it was good enough for Dunhill and Billy Taylor, then it's good enough for me!
 

Spillproof

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#12
I have a few Duhhills and a couple Wiley's that were oil-cured.

The Dunhill's were well "broken in" by the time I got my hands on them so can't say much about them.

The Wileys... What Furious said.
 

dmkerr

PG- free since '83!
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#13
I don't know anything, either. The Ashtons I had were great, while the oil-cured Wileys were mediocre at best. I never noticed anything resembling consistency with this process.
 

jdto

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#14
From what I have read of the process, logic would seem to dictate that any remains of the oil would be gone in short order from smoking the pipe. Then you are left with the quality of the briar and engineering of the pipe. But my experience isn't vast, so I can't say whether that is true or not. I suppose that the oil could leave behind some sort of residue in the wood to affect the flavour. Hopefully, someone who knows the science of the process can enlighten us so I can refrain from speaking out of my lower orifice :D
 

Spillproof

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#15
Nobody here knows more about briar than Sas.
He's an encyclopedia of pipe-stuff.

And Sas will tell you that oil-curing is inconsistent, and no one knows exactly why.
 

jpberg

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#17
Speculative is right. I just remembered 4 Dunhills I have - three are definately from the oil cured era, the last, a 1968, may or may not be, as I'm not sure anyone can tell us when the stock of oil cured briar was depleted, but I digress - the other three, two 1958 and a '59 are pretty definately oil cured, now here's the nub - I'd never be able to tell if I didn't know that Dunhill was oil curing blocks then. You'd pretty much have to have a block from the same batch of briar that was not cured, yet smoked and cared for in a similar manner to put up for a side by side comparison.

Just yesterday I emailed Bannard telling him that I found another pipe (the Radice)with "the taste". So I have 4 oil cured Radices, three with a relatively short lived muted flavor, and one estate that exhibits the same robust flavors that the Bannard does. Go figure.
 

jpberg

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#19
Nobody here knows more about briar than Sas.
He's an encyclopedia of pipe-stuff.

And Sas will tell you that oil-curing is inconsistent, and no one knows exactly why.
I know why - he screws it up sometimes, that's why.

A funny part of this is that the guys who do oil cure, Von Erck et al, are pretty tight lipped about the process.
 
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