Freshly mined Meerschaum is fully saturated with moisture but it dries quickly. When it dries it hardens over time. It is much easier and more effective to carve it wet. When wet, you can carve it like a bar of soap.
To carve your block easily and effectively, put it in a container with water. Within minutes it will sink in water. For full saturation and best results, keep it in water for a couple of hours. Outcome will be like a freshly mined meerschaum. Keep your block in a sealed environment (zip lock bag etc.) while not working on it. When the carving process is over, let your piece dry for a few days. Now you can fine sand and seal it with beeswax. To do it; heat your piece up to 90 degrees Celsius (195 Fahrenheit) in an oven, melt your beeswax in a bain marie. Keep wax hot and liquid and apply on hot piece several coats with a fine brush except fire chamber until it absorbs no more wax and becomes saturated. Heat the piece upside down one last time in the oven to 80-90 degrees Celsius (175 – 195 F) and let it cool. (Or skip the oven and use a heat gun or hairdryer to keep wax liquid.) Now it is ready to buff with or without some carnauba wax. Natural beeswax gives a distinctive honey color to carved items. Even with traditional use of purified beeswax, pure white will tint a little towards ivory color.
Dimensions of the blocks are in the photos. Length-Height-Width
PLEASE CONSIDER THAT MEERSCHAUM IS A HIGHLY POROUS NATURAL MATERIAL. HOWEVER WE CHOOSE BEST RAW BLOCKS THAT EVERY MEERSCHAUM PIPE CARVING MASTER WILL DESIRE, SOME IMPERFECTIONS ARE INEVITABLE AND ACCEPTABLE.