Monday, December 6, 2010

A Man and his Pipe
There is nothing like a good pipe and excellent tobacco. Pipes come in all shapes and sizes. Long stemmed churchwarden pipes provide a cool smoke. Each pipe is a work of art, unique and beautiful. Pipe smokers are collectors and their collections grow over the years. There is a huge variety of tobaccos, tobacco blends and flavors to choose from.
I began my pipe smoking journey 45 years ago. In those days pipe shops contained a large variety of pipes and tobaccos. Every visit to a pipe shop was an adventure. Today local pipe shops focus on selling cigars and the variety of pipes and tobaccos is very small. In fact they now carry many things that don't relate to pipe smoking. I do my best to support them and suggest tobaccos that they should carry.
Things have changed. The pipe smoker has to go to the Internet to find the variety that pipe shops was had. I bought my first pipe in Portland and it was a Digby bulldog pipe with a saddle bit. I paid $5 for it. Today a pipe of the same quality costs at least $50. A beginning pipe smoker needs at least three pipes. Cheap pipes smoke hot because they are made of poor quality briar and they are lacquered. The lacquer holds the heat in and keeps the pipe from breathing. So most beginning pipe smokers have a bad experience.
Today there are only 1.6 million pipe smokers. I am not sure how they came up with that number but it is the official number that is listed. Savinelli, an Italian pipe company offers three things: excellent briar pipes at reasonable prices, a variety of styles of pipes at reasonable prices, and all of their pipes smoke cool. Of course they also offer pipes that are a lot more expensive.
However, I must add that a good pipe usually cost $50. Estate pipes are pipes that have been smoked and you can find excellent pipes for less than $50.
In my next blog I will explore the area of affordable pipes and talk about pipe tobaccos that you may enjoy. In the meantime check out the Internet and take time to compare prices. Everyone has their favorite sites,
Until next time, enjoy your pipes and relax,