Pipe tool

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A pipe tool is any of a variety of small gadgets designed to aid in packing, smoking, and emptying tobacco pipes.

A typical pipe tool unfolded, showing from left to right a pick, reamer, and tamper.

A typical pipe tool consists of a pick, a reamer, and a tamper:

  • The pick is a narrow rod or pin that can be used to clear the shank of debris, or used to aerate tightly packed tobacco. Because it is sharp it may scratch the bowl of a pipe, and so shouldn't be used for scraping.
  • The reamer is a flat instrument shaped like a dull pen-knife blade or a flattened spoon, used to scrape ash and unburned tobacco (dottle) off the sides and bottom of a pipe.
  • The tamper is a blunt instrument, either a simple dowel or shaped like the top of a nail, with a flat end for tamping down the tobacco when the bowl is being packed, and for crushing the ash together to aid relighting.