Home Tobacco Talk

My first rehydration experience

I think I did alright. Decided to experiment with the rest of the Leafonly Latakia I bought awhile ago. Didn’t push the water too far and I only used distilled to avoid anything gross. Latakia leaf is really tough when it’s super dry.


  • The smell actually improved as well. Dry whole leaf is extremely pungent to the nose.
  • @ocpunk714 Congrads on your fist foray into 'waste not want not'. Not until I came to this forum and began watching YouTube videos for the pipe community, did I learn that you could revive dry tobacco. Before I'd simply toss it out. I though it was ruined. But once I learned the art of rehydration I've rescued several old dried up pouches of over-the-counter tobacco I'd amassed over the years.
  • KA9FFJKA9FFJ Master
    I recently was gifted 3 bags of pipe tobacco that, according to the gifter, is around 10 years old:
    All Tinder Box blends
    1oz Crown Royale
    1oz Honey Cavendish
    2oz Captain Spice
    I will be using the "inflated pillow bag" technique used by George Bruno in his YouTube  video entitled:
    "Rehydrating your pipe tobacco like a boss"...
    Don't know how to provide a link. Maybe someone else with expertise can help...
    This technique has worked well for me in the past, so I thought I'd share... It's really a pretty informative video...
  • @KA9FFJ ~ I believe this is the link to the video. If not, please advise. 

  • motie2motie2 Master
    edited June 2019
    I take a large tobacco container that seals tight, put a shot glass filled with water upright in the container, seal the container, and leave it in the sun for an hour or two. Carefully open, remove shot glass with whatever remaining water, and there you are: perfectly hydrated....

  • KA9FFJKA9FFJ Master
    Tnx @Kmhartle That's the one...
    Love your idea @motie2 ...  Gotta try that one...
  • motie2motie2 Master
    Another online commentator wrote: <<When tobaccot becomes dry, it can be rehydrated by various methods, including a terracotta stone. Soak the stone in purified water for about ten minutes and then place it in the jar. (Make sure the one you buy is gonna fit your jar.) The dryer the tobacco, the longer rehydration will take – from hours to days. In extreme cases, re-soaking the stone may be required.>>

    Put TERRACOTTA STONE into Amazon
  • @Zouave
    I love the smell of fresh tobacco in the morning :)
  • My local tobacconist taught me this one and it’s always worked well. 
    1. Spread out the the dried tobacco in large mixing bowl
    2. Spray it with a mister filled with distilled or spring water
    3. Cover the bowl with wet paper towel 
    4. Stir and repeat about every couple of hour throughout the day
    5. Once it “feels” right put it back in the jar

  • My few attempts at re-hydrating tobacco have come from finds I lucked into at Antique stores and tobacco that was gifted to me. First was a couple of tins of unopened tins of Velvet from the 1960's and the next was samples of Edgeworth Slice from the 1940's, Ready Rub from the 50's and an unopened tin of Prince Albert from the mid 1950's. Since what I did with the Velvet worked the first time I used the same method each time. There was no loss of flavor and the tobacco stayed hydrated as long as it remained air tight (at least long enough to smoke it up). 
    1) I placed the tobacco in a shallow, air tight, glass (I used PYREX) container with a lid that sealed down tight. I spread it around the outside edge of the container where the glass was exposed in the center. I placed a coffee saucer in the center of the dish.
    2) on top of the coffee saucer: I placed a saturated ball of 2 paper towels with bottled spring water soaking them plentifully. I did not wet the tobacco.
    3) I sealed the lid and let it sit for 48 hours...air tight. After 48 hours I removed the saucer, replaced the lid and shook the tobacco to mix it up. Then I spread it back to the outside edge and replaced the saucer and with fresh paper towels repeated the process of sealing wet towels in it for 48 more hours.

    After this I removed the saucer, shook the tobacco up and smoked it like a 3 foot salmon. There is a big, big, difference between old and new Velvet. I think this worked well for me and if you have the patience to see it through it will work for you too.
  • motie2motie2 Master
    Sounds a lot like my method, of leaving jar in the sun with a moisture source inside.
  • motie2motie2 Master
    From our friend at Pipestud's Consignment Shop https://www.pipestud.com/

    <<With warmer weather upon us, a major issue crops up with humidity rising at many locations around the country. Keeping your tobacco from absorbing the moisture and staying dry is indeed a problem. I personally keep a supply of DampRid FG90 Moisture Absorber on hand and use it it my shop during the humid summer and early fall months down here in Texas. It effectively removes moisture from the air. Here's what you may want to try - take a couple of days worth of your favorite tobaccos and spread the leaf out on a paper towel and place the paper towel close to the can of DampRid. Once your leaf is very dry, simply put it in a tin or mason jar and seal. The tobacco will stay dry until you are ready to smoke it. Not as sexy as keeping your tobacco in a handsome leather tobacco pouch or handsome humidor, but certainly more effective. I purchase my DampRid from Amazon.>>
  • KA9FFJKA9FFJ Master
    Almost finished rehydrating some gifted tobaccos. It's taken 3 days but the bone dry blends are just about where they need to be.
    Started off with the "pillow bag" technique on day one (see pic). The bags were so old they lost their ability to hold air for more than 4 hours.
    So I went to the tried and true Mason jar method... After 2 days of adding 4 to 5 drops of distilled water per blend, they are finally coming around...  Boy were they dry!
  • motie2motie2 Master
    Specifically, RAW Hydrostone Natural Terracotta Humidifying Stone Set of 3
  • I also posted this in “loot”.

    I made a quick stop at the tobacconist downtown today hoping to find some Samuel Gawith tobaccos.  They had one tin of Brown No. 4.  It was pretty expensive, but...well, it was at one of the local B&M’s, I thought I should throw a little cash their way....$20.20.....dang.   Sooo...I got it home, and went to pop the tin....no seal 🤨.  This stuff was drier than a “popcorn fart”....yes, a Gawith rope....crispy dry.  I wonder how long it had been since some joker popped the tin for a sniff?  I had not seen any SG tins in this store for at least a year....silly me, I thought they got a new shipment in and I was lucky to get the one tin....NOT.  I also wonder how many previous customers had returned this tin, they had to know?  I think I am still going to let them know how fricken dry it was and how I am a bit dissatisfied.
         Well, I did not want to return it (going downtown sucks) so I decided to try to rejuvenate it.  I put the rope in a half-pint mason jar and trickled a little filtered water into the jar.  I filled a small pan with water and dropped a jar ring in the bottom to hold the mason jar off of the bottom of the pan.  I left the lid off of the jar while I brought the water to a boil, then popped a loose lid on the pan and simmered (steamed) the jar with the tobacco in it.  The slight liquid that was in the jar dissipated and the tobacco seemed to rehydrate nicely after about 20-30 minutes.  I pulled the jar out, screwed down the lid and covered the hot jar with a dish towel so it did not cool too quickly and break.  I will check it in a few days to see how it is doing.
  • Rehydration

    Rehydrate old tobaccos by boiling a pot of water and then placing a strainer filled with the dried out tobacco above the boiling water. The steam penetrates the tobacco. After about a minute, spread the tobacco evenly onto paper towels. If the tobacco is too moist, leave it out to dry a bit until it is “goldilocks.” Transfer the tobacco to a sealed container. This works as well as my method: putting a shot glass filled with water, carefully, without spilling it, into a clear sealed container with the tobacco. Then put the jar in the sun for a couple of hours…..

  • Found this by pipe master George Bruno, on rehydrating tobacco.
  • @motie2 It's a good video.  I viewed it earlier this year and tried it.  Don't know if my tobaccos were that far gone or what, but had to use twice the amount of water drops to get decent results. 
    But the technique does work, at least for me...
  • I just left an antique shop where someone was selling a pipe stand with a large box in the center for holding tobacco. The box was loaded with plastic bags of old Tinder Box tobacco blends. A note was attached to one bag which read: the tobacco was old and meant mainly as a prop - and recommended the tobacco be discarded because it was too old and dry. I didn't need the extra pipe rack - but I was interested in the tobacco blends. Many of which were old favorites l smoked back when The Tinder Box was still in my location. So I had the shop owner contact the particular vendor and asked if they'd consider selling just the tobacco. We stuck a deal and I ended up taking home about a dozen bags of old Tinder Box blends home for $15.00. Don't know how they'll end up tasting after I re-hydrate then ... some of the blends were cry enough to crumble. But I'll give it a go. Starting with about four ounces of Captain Spice.   
  • KA9FFJKA9FFJ Master
    edited December 2019
    @ghostsofpompeii if you use the above video as a guide, again, my suggestion is to double up on the drops of distilled water... It still may not be enough...
  • Or.... use one of the other methods described in this discussion, including my own.
Sign In or Register to comment.