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Thread: Stuck Comoy's Grand Slam Stem - Suggestions?

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    Stuck Comoy's Grand Slam Stem - Suggestions?

    Folks - I rec'd a Comoys Grand Slam today, in great shape and what appeared to be an relatively easy restoration.
    But, I can't get the stem out of the shank - it's hung up. It comes out a few millimeters, than hangs up. Twists freely, but doesn't release.
    I ran a cleaner thru the stem and believe the stinger is still in place.
    It's possible that the leather washer has swollen OR someone put a larger washer or other material in it's place.
    I soaked the bowl with alcohol, but the same result.
    Any advice before I ask for a return?

  2. #2
    PSU Member McGyver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riff raff View Post
    Folks - I rec'd a Comoys Grand Slam today, in great shape and what appeared to be an relatively easy restoration.
    But, I can't get the stem out of the shank - it's hung up. It comes out a few millimeters, than hangs up. Twists freely, but doesn't release.
    I ran a cleaner thru the stem and believe the stinger is still in place.
    It's possible that the leather washer has swollen OR someone put a larger washer or other material in it's place.
    I soaked the bowl with alcohol, but the same result.
    Any advice before I ask for a return?
    I've heard that some will put the pipe in the freezer for a bit (duration not known) and the dissimilar materials will shrink at different rates. It may come free at that point, but with cold items take care and the lower temperature may make the pipe parts more brittle than usual.

    Mind you, I haven't had to use this method on pipes, but on clutch flywheel plates I've had to replace the starter ring. We would cut off the old ring, then put the flywheel plate in a freezer. After it had been in there for an hour or so, we would take it out, and then with a torch heat the starter ring and with the miniscule contraction of the plate and the expansion of the starter ring from the torch, it would slip on to the plate with some light tapping from a hammer. Let the whole thing cool/warm to room temperature, and Viola!

    LOL...haven't thought about that in over 30 years.
    Take care and check six!

    McGyver

    "If it ain't broke, you haven't tried hard enough yet"

    Pipe Smoking - The next Extreme Sport - Where else can you take something that can cost almost as much as a car, fill it with combustible material, and light it on fire...for enjoyment!

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    PSU Member Scottishgaucho's Avatar
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    I've had a two or three stuck stems with estate pipes I've bought. The freezer method McGyver mentioned has worked for me. 5-10 minutes is all it needs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scottishgaucho View Post
    I've had a two or three stuck stems with estate pipes I've bought. The freezer method McGyver mentioned has worked for me. 5-10 minutes is all it needs.
    that certainly works for a stuck tenon but it is not the tenon that is the problem as Al states the stem comes out a few millimetres.
    I suspect he is correct about the washer swelling or incorrect.
    I dont have an answer though

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulfg View Post
    that certainly works for a stuck tenon but it is not the tenon that is the problem as Al states the stem comes out a few millimetres.
    I suspect he is correct about the washer swelling or incorrect.
    I dont have an answer though
    Right - "stuck stem" was probably not the right choice of words. It's definitely held in place by something on the end of the stinger. I suspect they used an oversized leather washer, piece of rubber, etc. Somehow they got it in but it is not coming out. I put some WD 40 down the stem, freezer, alcohol, etc. I gave up and will be returning it. A pity, it has a lot of promise. Here's a picture


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    PSU Owner dmcmtk's Avatar
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    Twist and PULL Al, no guts no glory! WD 40...? Not a good idea getting that into the wood IMHO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dmcmtk View Post
    Twist and PULL Al, no guts no glory! WD 40...? Not a good idea getting that into the wood IMHO.
    An $80 gamble I wasn't willing to take. A little disappointed, that would have been a otherwise easy restore.

  8. #8
    PSU Member Scottishgaucho's Avatar
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    A nice pipe it'd be a shame if you have to return it. I had no idea about the leather washer.

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    Grand Slams had a sized leather washer at the end of the stinger, and the size of the washer was stamped on the side of the pipe (not sure how many were available).
    I think someone used an item other than the right sized leather washer, and not it is hopelessly stuck in the shank. A pity, that one deserved to have been restored and enjoyed for another generation or two.




  10. #10
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    sorry to read that,it looks a nice pipe and as you say deserves to be restored.

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