|My very own pipe|
The bowls of tobacco pipes are commonly made of briar wood, meerschaum, corncob or clay. Less common are other dense-grained woods such as cherry, olive, maple, mesquite, oak, and bog-wood. Pipe bowls are sometimes decorated by carving.
The stem needs a long channel of constant position and diameter running through it for a proper draw, although filter pipes have varying diameters and can be successfully smoked even without filters or adapters. Because it is moulded rather than carved, clay may make up the entire pipe or just the bowl, but most other materials have stems made separately and detachable. Stems and bits of tobacco pipes are usually made of mouldable materials like vulcanite, Lucite, Bakelite, and soft plastic. Less common are stems made of reeds, bamboo, or hollowed out pieces of wood. Expensive pipes once had stems made of amber, though this is rare now.
|Sherlock Holmes smoking a pipe|
|Cross-section of a pipe|