A tobacco pipe is a popular instrument in smoking tobacco. Many notable personalities such as Albert Einstein, Mark Twain, and Sigmund Freud are known avid pipers. As a way to smoke tobacco, the pipe is still popular until now and the number of new users is even rising.
Smoking by pipe is preferable to cigarette and cigar smoking because the lips of the person using it do not touch the tobacco itself. This means it does not cause discoloration of the lips. The pipe is designed so that the burning tobacco is far from the face of the person smoking. Speaking of designs, tobacco pipes are simple and it consists of only three parts.
Parts of the Pipe
The bowl, the shank, and the bit are the three parts that make up the smoking pipe. The bowl is the little roundish chamber where the tobacco is packed and lit. Attached to the bowl is a short tube where the smoke flows through, called the shank. The last part of the pipe is the bit, which is the mouthpiece of the pipe.
Materials Commonly Made Into Pipes
There are many materials used in making tobacco pipes. These materials include:
Corncob – The most affordable pipes are made from corncobs. They are effective and beautiful, but they don’t last long, unlike the other materials.
Clay – Using clay to make pipes is a good idea. They are easy to decorate with different designs before they are dried and fired. Clay pipes can be either expensive or cheap. Expensive pipes are usually hand carved and decorated by hand. Low quality pipes are made using molds.
Briar – Briar is the material used in making most pipes used nowadays. This wood is best for pipes because of its inherent quality to absorb moisture produced during the combustion process as well as its ability to resist heat. It also has good grain that makes the pipe look very gorgeous.
Meerschaum – Clay and meerschaum were used before briar became the material of choice in making pipes. Meerschaum is a white mineral found in turkey. It is highly priced because it is easy to carve decorative figures in it. Meerschaum is a porous mineral, so it will absorb many elements of the tobacco when it’s used. After many years of using a meerschaum pipe, its color will change into golden brown.
The popularity of tobacco pipes is as strong now as they were in the past. Not only do they make smoking tobacco easier, they are also beautiful works of art. They are items people can proudly display in their office and enjoy in their homes. Tobacco pipes are also good collection pieces. These last long and never go out of fashion.
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