Can I make a pipe from a corn cob?

Mikewood

Well-known member
#1
Particularly a cooked cob? Once a week or so I will throw a couple ears of corn on the grill and cook then till tender. As I am finishing dinner I always think I should be Trying to making a pipe.

So I have to ask. Can you make a pipe out of a cooked corn cob? Drill it with a forshner bit and make a stem from an oak dowel... It seems really easy but I would appreciate any tips, tricks or help you might care to provide. I have a few MM cobs so I don’t “need” a pipe but I do hate throwing away the cobs.
Thanks!
 

Mikewood

Well-known member
#5
Sweet corn and field corn are different. Missouri Meerschaum uses dried field corn cobs for their pipes (a special hybrid developed just for big cobs). I assume it is sweet corn that you are grilling. You could try drying one out, who knows? Anyone here try it?
Interesting. Field corn should have a higher starch content and less sugar. I wonder how much sugar is in the cob of sweet corn. I guess it would Caramelize and burn hotter than a cob made of field corn.
 
#6
Interesting. Field corn should have a higher starch content and less sugar. I wonder how much sugar is in the cob of sweet corn. I guess it would Caramelize and burn hotter than a cob made of field corn.
I know you can scrape a sweet corn cob, and get “milk” out of it. It is very sweet. Off topic, this years sweet corn I got from a friend was the best I’ve had in years.
 

blackmouth210

Friendly Misanthrope
Patron
#7
I've done it a few times.
All I use is a pocket knife rather than drill bits or other tools for making the chamber and stem hole.

For the stem I always use a hollowed bamboo stick cut to size.
A wire coat hanger is great for hollowing the bamboo piece if it's not naturally hollow.
But use the bamboo pieces between the knuckles. Hollowing out the area around the knuckles is more of a pain than its worth.

There's a reason MM uses a variety of corn that's not fit for human consumption.
These home-made ones are never great pipes. The cobs are never adequately sized/shaped.
But they're something fun to mess around with.

No matter the type of corn, the key is to make sure it's properly dried out beforehand.
 

tipofthelake

Reputable source, posts found on the internet
#8
I've done it a few times.
All I use is a pocket knife rather than drill bits or other tools for making the chamber and stem hole.

For the stem I always use a hollowed bamboo stick cut to size.
A wire coat hanger is great for hollowing the bamboo piece if it's not naturally hollow.
But use the bamboo pieces between the knuckles. Hollowing out the area around the knuckles is more of a pain than its worth.

There's a reason MM uses a variety of corn that's not fit for human consumption.
These home-made ones are never great pipes. The cobs are never adequately sized/shaped.
But they're something fun to mess around with.

No matter the type of corn, the key is to make sure it's properly dried out beforehand.
I actually winced and then laughed when I read this. I managed to stab a coat hanger through 2 fingers doing this when for some reason it punched through the side of the piece I was hollowing out. I was about 14. It was fun explaining to my mom why I was bleeding everywhere, and the trip to get a tetanus shot provided extra time for lecturing about what kind of idiot I was.:roflmao:
 

Ozark Wizard

Well-known member
Patron
Old Ted Award Winner
#9
The big issue to me is that once the cob is really dry, the center of the tough stuff won't be a very large diameter. Maybe a half inch chamber?

I've made cobs out of that dried decorative Indian corn. They seem to be more cob than corn, and 5/8" seemed like I was pushing the chamber walls.

Could be fun to try, but as was said, you want them really dry. Like next year dry.
 

Mikewood

Well-known member
#10
I've made cobs out of that dried decorative Indian corn. They seem to be more cob than corn, and 5/8" seemed like I was pushing the chamber walls.
Good idea. It’s almost Indian corn season so I can buy an ear or two at the grocery store and have a go. Well four. One for me and three will go to the Tax levied by the Mrs. for holiday decorations.
 
#11
I've done it, and it'll work, but sweet corn has a much smaller diameter cob than field corn. I remember finding the really big red cobs when I was younger and shelling corn was a thing, those were the cobs you wanted for pipes. They were fairly close to the smaller MM models. Reed, bamboo, hollow weeds, etc, can all be stems.

The butt end of the cob works nicely, the part where the ear attaches to the stalk dries hard and can be almost like the hardwood plugs MM puts in. No need to drill it out, the interior of cobs is usually pithy, and can be scraped clean very easily with a pocket knife. It takes about 15 minutes to snap the cob, scrape the pith, drill a hole with your pocket knife, and put the stem in, and you're ready for your new pipe to work.