smoking pipe


Sep 27, 2002
Langley, BC, Canada
I have an antique smoking pipe circa 1800 ish that had previously been framed, but has developed mould - yuck! The customer would like the pipe cleaned and reframed. Does anybody have any suggestions on cleaning and how to prevent mould from reoccurring??
Thanks in advance!
Pack in desicant and microwave for 15 seconds, or just leave it buried in the desicant for a few days in a sunny window.

As to not reaccuring.... hmmmm you would have to scrape the inside of the bowl and ream the insides of the stem maybe even with acetone or listerine....

Once it's been smoked, it's nasty. Most smoke shops will soak in Listerine an old pipe that hasn't been smoked in years and a new smoker is going to use it. It's a sanitary thing. We're gonna kill you with tobacco, but we'll do it cleanly. Gave up my pipes in 1981. Gave em all away in '83.

Another thought that isn't very PC or P or C or M for that matter... After you clean it up real nice, hose it down with a couple of coats inside with lacquer. I'm sure someone will be along shortly to condem the idea that may know more about it than I. :D
Well Baer, It's probably not time for such unusual and heavy artillery right yet.

Lorenzo, Baer is right about the humidity. Mold will only grow if conditions are too damp - generally 65% RH or higher. So the first question to ask is, where was the pipe displayed? The display area (or basement storage?) needs to be changed.

To clean it, let it dry right out and then wipe with a clean cloth. I like cotton flanellette. You can also try some soft swabs for the inside.

Solvents / Listerine (!!!) can affect the finish/sheen in a negative way. Unless you are sure what you're doing, I'd steer clear of that, and even if you are sure what you are doing I can't recommend Listerine!

If the display area can't be changed (best possible option), you'll need to get some conditioned silica gel (40 - 5-% RH) into the frame, and then seal the frame using a moisture barrier like Marvelseal.

Sealed framing systems have been discussed here so try the archives. If that doesn't work, someone can direct you to one of Hugh Phibb's very good articles on the subject.

Good Luck.

Hi Lorenzo,
What is the pipe made of? Wood,Clay or Mearsham. Does it have a seperate stem.

The impossible I can do today,
Miracles take a little longer