Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the Winners of the 2017 Aristocob Cobfoolery Contest!

I’d like to begin this post by saying “thank you” once again to everyone who entered their modified corn cob pipes in the 2017 Aristocob Cobfoolery Contest.  Click the links to see the original entry video. 

Our Professional finalist's pipes were judged by an online popular vote.  The results are as follows: 

Professional, Classic Shape Category:




First Place: John Keller
For his "Irish HuntsmanJohn wins a $10 credit for being a finalist, a $50 credit from Aristocob.com.   Additionally John wins a Missouri Meerschaum Freehand pipe on a custom laser engraved wood plaque, graciously provided by Missouri Meerschaum Corn Cob Pipe Company! 





Runner-up: Dodif
Dodif wins second place for his "Crown Royal" a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $30 for being our first runner up, for a total of $40 in credit from Aristocob.com.  







We had a Tie for Third Place, so we have two Third Place Winners: 
Randal Graham with his "Reverse Calabash Cobula" and 

CaneRodPiper (Mike) with his "CherryWood Cob". 

For their winning entries both Randal an Mike wins a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $20 for placing third, for a total of $30 in credit from Aristocob.com.











Professional, Freehand Category:



First Place: Dodif
For his "The P.I.T.ADodif gets a $10 credit for being a finalist and wins a $50 credit from Aristocob.com.   Additionally Dodif wins a Missouri Meerschaum Freehand pipe on a custom laser engraved wood plaque, graciously provided by Missouri Meerschaum Corn Cob Pipe Company! 


Runner-up: John Keller


John wins second place for his "The Snail" a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $30 for being our first runner up, for a total of $40 in credit from Aristocob.com.  





Third Place: CaneRodPiper (Mike)

Mike wins third place for his impressive "Briny Barrel Cob" a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $20 for placing third, for a total of $30 in credit from Aristocob.com.  





I'd like to thank all the judges for the Amateur entries in the 2017 Cobfoolery contest for their thoughtful deliberation. You guys are awesome! 

  • Phil Morgan, General Manager of The Missouri Meerschaum Corn Cob Pipe factory
  • Jason Dagner, creator of the Dagner Cob and owner of Dagner Pipes
  • Chris Morgan of Morgan Pipes Creator of the CobCigar and the CobWasp
  • Jay Dighsx, cob fan and Youtube Pipe Community celebrity 
  • Dodif, a past and amateur and current pro winner of the Cobfoolery contest.
  • Seth Markwood, my son and co-host of Markwood Men's Breakfast Club
  • Scott Markwood (me) from www.Aristocob.com


Amateur, Classic Shape Category:

First Place: The Badger Piper  
For his beautiful cob entry "The Warden of the North" The Badger Piper wins a $10 credit for being a finalist plus a $50 credit from Aristocob.com.  Add to that a Missouri Meerschaum Freehand pipe on a custom laser engraved wood plaque, graciously provided by Missouri Meerschaum Corn Cob Pipe Company!    

Runner-up: Ath1076 
For his cob entry "The AraCORN" wins a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $30 for being our first runner up, for a total of $40 in credit from Aristocob.com.  

We had a Tie for Third Place, so we have two Third Place Winners: 

Biscuit with his "MacAdiator the Hungarian" and 

Aaron Coggiano with his "The Cobiano"
For their entries they both win a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $20 for placing third, for a total of $30 in credit from Aristocob.com.  















Amateur, Freehand/Fantasy Shape Category:

First Place: Biscuit
For his cob creation "The Still" Biscuit wins a $10 credit for being a finalist plus a $50 credit from Aristocob.com.  Add to that a Missouri Meerschaum Freehand pipe on a custom laser engraved wood plaque, graciously provided by Missouri Meerschaum Corn Cob Pipe Company! Several of the judges mentioned how they enjoyed the thorough walk through of the construction of the pipe and that they appreciated the fact they Biscuit lit and smoked his pipe proving that it wasn't just for show. That was a vote getter.


Runner-up: Shane Hill
For his "CobCube 3.0" wins a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $30 for being our first runner up, for a total of $40 in credit from Aristocob.com.  I have to say that Shane did a wonderful job making a piece of art that might not even be recognizable as a pipe. This one truly exemplifies the spirit of Cobfoolery. Shane got similar kudos as Biscuit for the walks through of the pipe and the demo of smoke-ability.  


Third Place: John Copeland
For his entry of "The Bifurcated" John wins a $10 credit for being a finalist plus $20 for placing third, for a total of $30 in credit from Aristocob.com.  


Congratulations to all of our WINNERS! 

Another giveaway? Sure, why not? Everyone who votes will be entered to win two pipes!

One last day to vote, so entice you to do so we are announcing a new drawing that will take place on Sunday from all the folks who take the time to vote for their top choice in the pro class for Freehand and Classic pipes. That's all you have to do: vote and you're entered!  Watch this for more details and scroll down on the Home page to the post with the large VOTE button to cast your votes.

 

It's time to VOTE for the winner of the 2017 Cobfoolery Professional Entries!

It's time to cast your vote for the Cobfoolery Pro Class entries. We are thrilled to have so many amazing pipes entered this year by some truly talented pipe makers! While we have a team of pipe professionals judging the amateur entries but YOU are a judge of the Pro class.



Here's a playlist of all of the 2017 Cobfoolery Pro Classic entries

Here's a playlist of all of the 2017 Cobfoolery Pro Freehand entries

After previewing the video entries click the link below and vote for your choice of winner in both the Classic & Freehand shape categories.

 VOTING HAS ENDED


Voting will end at midnight EST Saturday, May 6th, 2017 and winners will be announced on Sunday, May 7th.

Cobfoolery Tip, revised: Replacing the stem (bit) on your Missouri Meerschaum corn cob pipe

In the several years since I originally wrote on this topic several sources have come and go, so here's the most up to date info on this topic, as of April 2017.

When we started selling Missouri Meerschaum corn cob pipes online at Aristocob.com back in 2007 one of the biggest internal debates I had was what to call the part of the pipe that people put into their mouth.  I had always called this the "stem", but others called it a "mouthpiece".  To make things even more complicated Missouri Meerschaum referred to this as a "bit".  My understanding was that the "bit" was the far end of the stem, where the biting takes place.  At any rate, we decided that for the sake of continuity that we would refer to them as bits, just as Missouri Meerschaum (MM) did, but to this day I feel that was a mistake, so from here on in this post I wall refer to these as stems.

One of the fastest ways of modifying a corn cob pipe is to swap the stem.  You can do this between genuine MM bits, as long as you understand that there are two different tenon sizes.  Oh yeah, the tenon is the part of the stem that is dowel-like and inserts into the wooden shank.  All of the MM filtered bits have an O.D. of 8.7-8.8mm and an I.D. that will accommodate a 6mm filter, but it's important to note that they can be smoked with or without a filter installed.  The I.D. of the wooden shank is approximately 9mm and this hole is often ever-so-slightly tapered. And all of these "filtered" bits are interchangeable, so if you want to switch the stem from black to amber, or if you want to swap it for a thinner or wider stem, you can do this at will.  My personal favorite is the Danish stem in either black or amber.

Amber Danish stem from www.Aristocob.com

Another range of genuine MM stems is the non-filtered "slim" stems.  These are found on the smaller pipes, like the Pony Express, the Mizzou, the Patriot, the novelty miniature cobs, and on the other end of the size spectrum this stem is standard on the MacArthur pipes.

Lastly in the original MM range is the non-filtered vulcanized rubber stem that is found on the Freehand pipe.  This stem is only available in a bent shape we have learned that it can be straightened using the hot water method shown in the video below. Though the Freehand bit is an unfiltered stem, the tenon is sized to fit into the filtered shanks only.  That makes this stem an ideal upgrade for the bent Legend, Washington, Country Gentleman, the Diplomat, the General, the Kolonel (5th Avenue) the Ozark Mountain, the Missouri Pride, the Woodie's and the Spool.  Find all of these stock replacement stems at Aristocob.com.

Want to bend a stock MM pipe?  Watch this video.


There are now several aftermarket options available if you want to move away from the stock range of stems.  Here are a few of your choices:

Custom Made Stems:

Walker Briar Works: When I last wrote about this Dave Wolff had been expertly repairing and restoring pipes for years and had created line of Vulcanite and Lucite (acrylic) stems for MM pipes that he called the "Forever Stem".  I purchased one of the Lucite stems for one of my pipes and found it to be of high quality and a good value.

Since then... Pat Morgan, the lovely bride of Missouri Meerschaum's Plant Manager Phil Morgan purchased the Forever Stem line from Dave and after some training from Dave and a rocky start due to wild fluctuations in supplies Pat has re-launched the website Old Log Cabin Pipeworks to offer the popular "Forever Stem" once again.  These are sized to fit the "filtered" Missouri Meerschaum corn cob pipes, but they do render the pipe "unfiltered".


An example of Old Log Cabin Pipeworks "Forever Stems"

Here are some DIY Stem options:

Vermont Freehand:
With the 2016 demise of Pipemakers Emporium many cob modders were left to wonder where to go for their pipemaking supplies. Well wonder no more. Steve Norse at Vermont Freehand had us covered. You'll find both acrylic and vulcanized rubber stem blanks in a staggering variety of shapes and colors. For example, click on this pic to see the color range of his acrylic stems alone.


On another note, pen makers will find that their acrylic rod offering is vast and very reasonably priced and would be my choice over the retail selection found in most woodworking stores.

One important fact to note: The stem blanks sold at Vermont Freehand are rough, unfinished and feature an oversized tenon blank that will not fit a pipe shank.  You must cut the tenon to size, remove rough casting lines and finish the surfaces yourself.  That's your reward for going it alone, so if that sounds daunting you might just want to scroll on back to Old Log Cabin Pipeworks.
 An example of a vulcanized rubber stem blank from Vermont Freehand 

Do you really want a challenge?  I like your style.  You can do like many professional pipe makers do and create your own stems from wood, bone, acrylic or hard rubber.  While you can get some of these from suppliers who cater to pipe makers (VF, for example), many of these components are also sold by knife making suppliers and woodworking stores such as Woodcraft and Rockler.  Search their sites for "Pen blank".

An example of an acrylic pen blank from Woodcraft

That about wraps it up for now. Don't forget that the Missouri Meerschaum bits (stems) are very inexpensive and therefore you can swap them for a new one for pennies!
Check them out on our very own website www.Aristocob.com / Spare Pipe Stems/Bits

Aristocob's "Official" 2017 Cobfoolery Contest Announcement



Get cool-smoking Missouri Meerschaum corn cob pipes and Cobfoolery kits at http://www.Aristocob.com

Woohoo, it's Cobfoolery time!

This year (2017) the Cobfoolery contest will run the entire month of April and we will have two classes: Pro and Amateur and two Categories: Classic and Freehand.

Your entry needs to feature a genuine Missouri Meerschaum corn cob chamber, while the balance of your pipe can be made of any other material including wood, metal, clay, plastic, glass, zucchini, fabric, snow crab or any other material you can concoct.

We will NOT be requiring the finalists to ship their pipes to us.  We heard from several folks from outside the USA in 2014 and this requirement eliminated several of them due to delays they anticipated in shipping and in the various Customs departments. So to enter this year you'll need to post a video on Youtube showing off your entry and describing what you've done to modify while hopefully improve your corn cob pipe.  Your video MUST be titled "My entry in Aristocob's 2017 Cobfoolery Contest: (followed by your pipe's name).

For example, I made a pipe a couple years back that I titled the "Pierced Ear", so if I were entering it in this year's contest I would title my video: "My entry in Aristocob's 2017 Cobfoolery Contest: "The Pierced Ear".  Make sense?  Good!

Your entry must be posted on Youtube by midnight April 30th, and on May 1st we will announce the 6 finalists in each of the two classes and in the two categories and more details about the judging.

What can you win?

All of the 24 entrants whose pipes are selected as finalists will receive a $10 gift code which can be redeemed towards merchandise on www.Aristocob.com.

If your pipe is selected as one of the Grand Prize Winners you will receive another $50 in Aristocob merchandise as well as a special limited addition Missouri Meerschaum Freehand pipe on a special laser engraved plaque!

Also, as an incentive to get your videos submitted we will do weekly drawings for the folks who have their entries submitted.

Let me know if you have any questions and I look forward to seeing what you can come up with.

Scott


email me at: aristocob@gmail.com

Tips for growing your own corn cob pipes for Aristocob's 2017-18 Homegrown Cobfoolery contest!

In this new video Scott (from Aristocob.com) learns from Missouri Meerschaum's General Manager Mr. Phil Morgan all about the process of planning for, planting, harvesting and drying corn for making corn cob pipes.  Get your own genuine Missouri Meerschaum seed corn, corn cob pipe kits and even completed pipes that are ready for action at www.Aristocob.com


Grown your own Corn Cob Pipe with Genuine Missouri Meerschaum Seed Corn and enter the 2017-18 Homegrown Cobfoolery Contest!

Hey, Scott from Aristocob.com here. Jandy and I are proud to be able to offer for the first time ever, genuine Missouri Meerschaum seed corn! That’s right, we were able to acquire from Missouri Meerschaum a small supply of their seed corn for a special “Homegrown Pipe” category of the 2017-18 Aristocob Cobfoolery contest. To make your corn cob pipemaking easy we are bundling with the seeds 2 genuine Missouri Meerschaum hardwood stems and bits, together with two Aristocob "Patented" golf-tee tampers into what we are calling our "Homegrown Cobfoolery Seed Corn Kit".  

Learn more about this unique opportunity by visiting www.Aristocob.com and searching "Cobfoolery".  Learn more on the Aristocob Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/Aristocob and by watching the announcement video (below). Other videos will follow shortly on the Aristocob Youtube channel at www.Youtube.com/Aristocob