Top 3 Woods for Pipe Smokers | Mr. Brog Handmade Pipes
There are plenty of different pipe woods out on the market but what are the differences between wooden tobacco pipes? And which ones are the best wood for pipes? We are going to cover the most common woods used which are Pear, Olive and Briar. Each wood has different effects on your smoke so let’s start with Pear.
Pear Wood Tobacco Pipe
In order to get a pleasurable smoke from your pipe, you will need to build up a carbonized lining to the entire bowl interior, which helps insulate the bowl for a cooler, more flavorsome smoke. With most pipes smoking five to seven bowlfuls of tobacco with the bowl only half-filled you start producing a nice carbonized lining.
Olive Wood Tobacco Pipe
Filling your pipe is the most important step. If done properly, your first bowlful should be quite pleasant, but if done incorrectly your pipe may burn hot and bitter.
We usually call this tongue bite! That stinging sensation on the tip of your tongue, that makes many potential pipe smokers abandon the hobby prematurely, is caused by not filling the bowl correctly and by using tobacco that is too moist or too dry.
Briar Wood Tobacco Pipe
When lighting your pipe it is preferred to use a pipe lighter or wooden matches. The first light is called the ‘charring light’. Its purpose is to create a charred ‘lid’ of tobacco that will hold the second light. When creating the charring light, move the flame all around the tobacco, igniting it completely, but be careful not to scorch the bowl rim. Once completed, tamp the charred lid down gently. Now you are ready for the second light. Puff slowly and move your lighter over the charred tobacco making sure to light the entire bowl.
What Are Our Favorites Tobacco Pipes?
Here at Mr.Brog the majority of our pipes are crafted from Pear and Briar wood, since we believe that they are the best wood for pipes. There are also some other great woods like oak, Cherrywood and Mahogany but Pear and Briar are our favorites.
Things to Remember About Wooden Tobacco Pipes
No matter what kind of wood your tobacco pipe is, the care you take with your pipe will have it last for years to come. Make sure you keep it clean and always allow enough time for you pipe to cool. Be sure not to smoke a bowl really hot so you do not cause burnout. Some of the less dense woods are prone to this as the wood is not as hard.
If you ever have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us, we are happy to help! 😀
There are plenty of different pipe woods out on the market but what are the differences between them?
Alternative Woods Used For Pipe making
While briar root pipes are by far the most common wooden pipes, a wide range of other woods have been used. Times in which briar is scarce or completely unavailable (war, economic depression, etc.) have prompted curious carvers to explore the properties of alternative and more abundant materials. While softer, less porous or more susceptible to burning than briar, a temporary solution is often better than not smoking at all. The following woods have been used for smoking pipes to various extents:
- Black Walnut
- Mountain Laurel
Of all the woods listed, only Cherry remains common as a substitute for briar. Large-scale makers of cherry wood pipes are fewer in number, but include Ropp which has an extensive line of natural cherry wood carved from the wood and showing the actual bark, and the Missouri Meerschaum Co. which is better known for their corn-cob pipes. Ozark Mountain series, Maple and Cherrywood pipes
While now known for manufacturing Briar pipes, major Danish marque Stanwell began in 1942 as a producer of danish beechwood pipes. The political circumstances of the time made the importation of briar from standard sources such as the U.K. and France impossible. At the end of the war, normal trade resumed and imported briar became Poul Nielsen’s wood of choice. Despite this, the company has not forgotten its humble roots and currently offers a commemorative beechwood pipe in its original bulldog design. The pipe is small, which was also a product of hard times. Tobacco, in addition to briar, was made scarce by the World Wars.
Another material of particular interest may actually be considered a stone rather than an ‘alternative wood.’ Morta, or partially fossilized wood, has been used to a limited extent in the making of tobacco pipes. The substance is formed when timber submerged in an anaerobic environment such as a peat bog is unable to decompose along normal lines. Instead, the wood begins the long process of petrification. In addition to his briar pipes, carver Trevor Talbert produces a line of pipes that uses 4,500 year-old oak morta from the marshy regions of north-western France. In comparison to briar, morta presents its own set of challenges; first and foremost of which is the process of acquisition. Morta must first be located and extracted from the partially submerged soft ground in which it lies. The process of “poling” uses long iron rods to probe the earth for the hard logs. Once identified, the material is arduously extracted in great quantity. As with briar, a great deal of raw morta must be gathered due to the fact that after removing damaged or flawed material, little usable wood remains. The morta is then carved into pipes by a process described in great detail here on Trevor Talbert’s website.
Alternative Woods Used For Pipe making While briar root pipes are by far the most common wooden pipes, a wide range of other woods have been used. Times in which briar is scarce or completely