I thought i would post my simple way to clean up heavy rim cake . Its the fastest and easiest way I’ve found.
This is a old E.Wilke poker I’m working on .
I will use Oxy Clean as my cleaner because its a natural finish and I’m not worried about preserving a factory stain finish. I will soak the stem of this pipe in it as well ,so i will be killing two birds with one stone.
If i was preserving a pipe and wanted to be careful i would substitute Oxy Clean for a mild detergent and water such as a drop of dawn in warm water, or just water. It will remove the cake slower but will do just as well with out removing stain . Oxy Clean will strip stain and finish if applied like i will be doing on this rim. If you do this to a stained pipe you will have to match the color and stain the rim.
I added water to the Oxy Clean and heated in a microwave for 1 minute.
I then cut me a piece of green Scotch Brite pad about 3-4 inches square. If it was light cake you could use steel wool but for heavy cake on the rim i like to use a green pad.
I then dip the green pad in the warm Oxy Clean and place it on a old rag .
I have already removed most of the cake out of the bowl and cleaned the shank.
Take the pipe and turn it upside down like you are topping it with sandpaper.This will also keep the water and Oxy Clean from soaking into the bowl chamber.
Move the pipe in circles and back and forth with light to medium pressure.
This is after about 30 seconds and its almost gone.
I flip it over ( the pad ) and do the rest of the rim with the clean side of pad.
After another 30 seconds or less its all gone.
You can rinse the pad in warm soapy water and re use it a few more times as well.
Ill go ahead and clean up rest of the bowl.
I dipped a paper towel in the Oxy Clean (you can also use a cotton ball but i was out of them) and wipe the rest of bowl to clean off all the dirt and grime . If this had a stain of heavy finish and wanted to strip and remove it i would use a green pad dipped in Oxy Clean , give it a good scrubbing a few times. The take some sandpaper and hit any stubborn spots that the Oxy Clean did not remove. I usually dip the wet/dry paper in the Oxy Clean as well while I’m sanding the spots . If there is any.
I then spray some water and mild detergent mix with a spray bottle on a paper towel. You can substitute this step with alcohol if you prefer.
I go over the pipe a few times til the paper towel is clean after wiping the bowl.
After letting the pipe dry, i wipe it with some mineral oil. You can use olive oil or some other wood oil product. I like Mineral oil because its cheap, odorless,colorless and tasteless. It is also natural and does not have the danger of turning rancid like a food product.
Let the oil soak in the wood for about 10-15 minutes and wipe dry with a clean cloth.
The pipe needs more work and i will likely end up topping it slightly and sanding the rest of the bowl some . I’m just using this pipe as a example.
The pipe has not been sanded none and just cleaned and oiled . I have not taken anything away from the pipe or damaged any stamping’s etc…
If this pipe was in really nice shape or wanted to preserve it as is, it would just need a light wax .
In less than a hour (including the reaming and cleaning of the shank ) the bowl of this pipe went from this ,
This is what works for me . Maybe it will work for you ,or then again maybe not. Of course you can adjust and tweak my method to make it better or easier for you if you so desire.