Burl Tobacco Pipe

Introduction: Burl Tobacco Pipe

Easy to make one of a kind tobacco pipe.

Items needed:
Small burl
Thumb gouge
Pipe step (I turn my own)
Drill and bit
Drill bit Index sizer
Sander (optional)
Food grade polish

Step 1: Hollow

Using your gouge dig out the softer center of the burl to the depth desired. )I have cheated and drilled a pilot first on some of the harder burls.)

Step 2: Measure and Drill

Check the diameter of the end of your pipe stem and drill a hole into the burl.  Try to get as close to the bottom of the bowl as you can when drilling.  If you do not have the drill bit of the size needed I recommend going a size smaller if you can, better a tight fit then a loose one.

Step 3: Assemble, Sand, and Polish

Put all the pieces together to check fit.  I like to take the bowl to a belt sander and smooth out the face removing saw marks.  Polish with a food grade polish (I use mineral oil).  Enjoy.

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    Nicely done.. You could make them last a bit longer by mixing (real) 100% honey with water in a 1:1 mix. Then lightly coat the inside of the bowl, let it fully dry (about 24 hrs). The mix helps form a carbon layer inside the bowl and minimizes burning and charring of the wood. Be careful when just grabbing a log to do this as some woods are not safe at all for this. An alternative for briar root is Olive-wood. It works nicely, is safe and usually has beautiful grain patterns and spaulting.


    8 years ago

    have you tested the pipe for durability? I use a briar wood pipe.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I compare smoking them to smoking a corncob pipe. Depended on the wood of the burl, how hot you get the bowl when smoking, how often you smoke your pipe, etc. can all effect how long it lasts. I have one out of spalted red oak that I have been using for about a year, but I only smoke it about once a month. I make a lot out of maple burls, because that is the easiest to find in my area, and I expect them to have a shorter life expectancy then when I find woods like oak or cherry.


    Reply 8 years ago

    thank you for this. I have been wanting to make one but the briar wood itself is so hard to work with. I will definitely try this out this year


    8 years ago on Introduction

    beeswax makes a nice finish to gets a high gloss when buffed