Preparation of all
the necessary parts for a bamboo pipe
Everything begins with a block of wood. In
this particular case I am making a freehand
briar pipe with a bamboo shank extension.
First I need to be sure that my briar block
has no visible flaws, and if it does, I need
to figure out the way to avoid them. Considering
the fact that briar is a natural material,
flaws could be tolerated to a certain point.
But if they were too big, or there were too
many of them, the block would have to be thrown
away or used for tampers or something else.
As a result of boiling and drying, the blocks
become brown on the outside. Consequently,
in order to see some grain beneath the brown
surface, I begin with sanding the sides of
This particular block is fairly small because
it has been cut out from a larger one. The
other piece of that same block has already
been made into a pipe. It will have to have
a bamboo shank extension because otherwise
it would be too small.