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22 year old tin question

I just received a 22 year old tin of McClelland Mature VA No 22 and the contents sound like woodchips in a paint can. There is no bulge to the tin like other old tins that I have, but the top doesn't appear to have a crack in it. I can't smell baccy when I push on the bottom, but it has no pressure pushing back like a sealed tin might have. I haven't cracked any of my old tins, so I'm not sure if it's normal for tobacco to dry out quite a bit in the tin. Does this sound like the tin and tobacco might be compromised?
 
I've only cracked a 2010 Christmas Cheer, but I can tell you that ALL my old tins have this sound. The Christmas Cheer was fine. I'll let you know when I open the others...but it could be a while.
 
I've only cracked a 2010 Christmas Cheer, but I can tell you that ALL my old tins have this sound. The Christmas Cheer was fine. I'll let you know when I open the others...but it could be a while.

Did the 4 tins that you just got from PipeStud all have bulge to them? If any of them had no budge whatsoever, then I'm probably just being paranoid. The package got lost earlier today while being "delivered" and I had to track it down myself, so I'm already a bit protective of the investment.
 
Now that you mention it, 3 of them have a slight bulge and 1 of them does not. The one that doesn't has a different sound...I guess that'll be the first one I open. In fact, I'm gonna pop it now.
 
Yeah, this stuff is dusty wood chips. There was a distinctly different sound and no bulge. I put it in a mason jar with humidification disks...but I have no experience with recovery. Is this even possible?
 
Yeah, this stuff is dusty wood chips. There was a distinctly different sound and no bulge. I put it in a mason jar with humidification disks...but I have no experience with recovery. Is this even possible?

:lol: Just my luck today. I guess I'll be cracking mine in the next hour or two and try to hydrate it some. This is the most that I've spent on a tin. Go figure. :a8:

Edit: Recovery is possible, but it won't be as it was before.
 
Yeah, this stuff is dusty wood chips. There was a distinctly different sound and no bulge. I put it in a mason jar with humidification disks...but I have no experience with recovery. Is this even possible?

Better to spread it out in a shallow bowl and cover the bowl with a wet towel and don't let it touch the tobacco. Check on it every couple of hours and re-wet the towel if it starts drying out.
 
It's the risk you take when buying aged tobacco, sadly. It's hard enough to ensure that your own aged tobacco stays sealed after being cellared for years. The uncertainties only increase when you have no idea how the previous owner stored or managed of his cellar.

That's one of the reasons that I only take risks with blends that aren't in production anymore.
 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
It's the risk you take when buying aged tobacco, sadly. It's hard enough to ensure that your own aged tobacco stays sealed after being cellared for years. The uncertainties only increase when you have no idea how the previous owner stored or managed of his cellar.

That's one of the reasons that I only take risks with blends that aren't in production anymore.

Damn that's pretty harsh.
 
Damn that's pretty harsh.
It's the sad truth though.

There's other potential issues too. You could open up a tin and find mold. You could open up a tin and find out that it's rusted out. There's a lot that can go wrong when it comes to tobacco.

You might get lucky and a company like Cornell & Diehl will offer to replace some items, but that's kind of the exception rather than the norm... and it's only for mold or certain tins that are known for rusting.
 
There's a book:"The Billionaire's Vinager". It's about wine, but some of the same principles may apply to tobacco. Good and bad. Just a thought.
 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
I guess the way I thought it would be is the tobacco was long gone before the tin even left the seller. If it was intact but moldy, ok no one could have known. If it tasted like wet newspapers if the tin was intact, ok I get it. But if you shake the tin and it sounds like birdseed and you can squeeze it and see the seal is compromised...that's shady yo! Maybe the tin shouldn't have been opened? Like Schrödinger's cat the tobacco "could" be ok, or not, but until it's opened who knows?

Anyways I'm an uneducated novice pipe smoker so I can understand that there are rules already in place. Just had to give my tuppence.
 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
There's a book:"The Billionaire's Vinager". It's about wine, but some of the same principles may apply to tobacco. Good and bad. Just a thought.

Even in wine the cork would need to be intact and liquid in the bottle for it to be sold, correct? Or would a billionaire take receipt of a bottle with a rotted through cork and half the bottle evaporated?

Why do I feel semi-ticked off?:lol:. I guess it's the principle of the thing. /rant off
 

Hirsute

Used to have fun with Commander Yellow Pantyhose
It might be salvageable. It's a bummer, but it's happened to everyone who's cracked old tins. Sometimes you get a dud. It just happens--pinholes where you can't see them, a bad seal, you get the idea.

Here's what I would do. Stop shaking the tin. You want to leave everything as in tact as possible. Gently remove the contents and put the tobacco in a broad glass or steel bowl. Cover the bowl with a few layers of paper towels. Most them with distilled water. You want to get them pretty darn wet, but not dripping. Cover with a plate, and let it sit for a couple of hours. Remove the plate and remoisten again, the out the plate back. After a few time of this, gently touch the tobacco. It it's starting to rehydrate, mix gently with your hands, recover with paper towels, remoisten, and cover with the plate. Do this as much as necessary to get it back to the right moisture. Go slow and take your time. It will work. You will rehydrate the tobacco back to something smokable. It may or may not have much smell, but it will taste like something. Just not like perfect aged VA tobacco. But it may be ok, and even good. Once you get the tobacco where you want it, jar it and leave it alone for a week so the moisture can fully permeate and redistribute. Check it and see if it need more moisture, and then go through it all again. If necessary.


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I guess the way I thought it would be is the tobacco was long gone before the tin even left the seller. If it was intact but moldy, ok no one could have known. If it tasted like wet newspapers if the tin was intact, ok I get it. But if you shake the tin and it sounds like birdseed and you can squeeze it and see the seal is compromised...that's shady yo!

I feel the same way, honestly. I've not dealt much with aged tobacco, but I will forever know these tell-tale and obvious signs of a dry tin. And after I've been smoking for some decades plus the experience of handling and selling hundreds of aged tins a year, I'm sure I'd be pretty familiar with it.

But, c'est la vie. I get it.
 
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