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 The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique

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standardtoaster

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Age : 36
Location : Texas
Registration date : 2011-10-14

PostSubject: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:55 am

I had the hardest time for about a month trying to keep a pipe lit throughout the entire bowl. Relighting over, and over, and over. First I thought it was a moisture issue, I needed to dry out the tobacco more. Wrong. Then I thought it was a packing issue, I was packing the bowl too tight. Wrong again.

Finally, I stumbled on the one technique that made moisture and packing seemingly unimportant, and that technique is draw speed. To keep a pipe lit means drawing air slowly through the pipe. The slower the better.

My first instinct when smoking a pipe was to take a quick, short draw, pulling air through the pipe at a relatively fast speed to fan the flame. In reality, this just extinguishes the burning tobacco. The slow draw will pull heat down through the underlying tobacco, warming it up for burning and drying out.



And here is a photo of my current pipe tool:


Last edited by standardtoaster on Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:23 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:19 am

There's a lot of obsession with keeping the bowl lit throughout the entire smoking session. I'm not sure why this is.

Slowly and steadily drawing through the pipe does make for a better smoke, though, if you ask me.

I'm also not sure I'd personally use a deck screw or anything with that sharp of edges/points in my pipes, but to each his own. Cool That is a handy tool if you manage to break the stem at the shank to remove the tenon bit from the mortise...
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standardtoaster

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Age : 36
Location : Texas
Registration date : 2011-10-14

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:59 am

For me, relighting is an annoyance both in taste and time. It takes away the consistency of the smoke. Who likes to relight a cigar? Nobody, that's who. Why would pipes be any different?
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the macdonald

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Age : 43
Location : Windsor CT
Registration date : 2008-08-31

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:03 pm

I hit my Zen (pipe, tobacco, fire, and smoker singularity) over martinis (Churchill Martini only here). At a certain point all the practice and study comes together, but like all enlightenment pursuits the moment can be fleeting. One of the big keys is realizing a relights don't matter.

As for pipe tools, I had a friend in the Navy trying to get me a nail from Old Ironside. My tried and true pipe tool is a stick I have had for 10 years now. It is about as thick as a pinky and has a sharp-ish end where it was broken from the tree that makes a good pick with no risk of gouging.
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mark
Admin
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Registration date : 2008-07-02

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:07 pm

Good for you Standardtoaster,,,now you can concentrate on enjoying the tobacco, rather than fussing over technique.

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Sometimes I wake up grumpy. Other times I let her sleep.
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calipuffer



Age : 43
Location : Sunnyvale, CA
Registration date : 2011-10-04

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:35 pm

I struggled as well before I had a good pipe lighter. There is a YouTube video of a guy having a bad day and having trouble getting the pipe lit. He lights a match and it immediately goes out, and he throws the spent match towards the ashtray and misses. But that sentiment of match frustration was my experience until I purchased a pipe lighter. I now have a pipeline and a zippo with pipe insert and relighting isn't an issue anymore. In fact, I think I can get a better overall tobacco burn with more directed fire placement using the pipeline than I'd ever be able to get with a match (after it burned past the head).

On a side note, if you want to really "taste" the tobacco you need to sip the pipe and that will most likely lead to relights. I have found wonderful bursts of flavor if you let the pipe go out, wait a few min and then relight (more like you have to step away from your pipe for a few). Not sure why it is so, but when the tobacco comes back to temp it can really provide a burst of flavor (not referring to aromatic blends).
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MisterE
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Location : Mexico City
Registration date : 2009-08-24

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:39 pm

I had a one-light bowl out of necessity yeaterday afternoon. I got ta local cafe, orderded a coffee, got my pipe out, packed it, and.... no lighter. Evil or Very Mad

I bummed a light and just kept it going to the bottom tamping with my finger as I went. cat
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s.ireland



Age : 30
Location : South Carolina
Registration date : 2010-08-14

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:42 pm

MisterE wrote:
I had a one-light bowl out of necessity yeaterday afternoon. I got ta local cafe, orderded a coffee, got my pipe out, packed it, and.... no lighter. Evil or Very Mad

I bummed a light and just kept it going to the bottom tamping with my finger as I went. cat

Funny you should mention that because lately I've been having the best and most effortless smokes while engaged in some activity that doesn't allow me to fuss and fidget with my pipe. Walking the dog, doing yardwork, long drives, and cooking dinner are a few examples. I'll load my pipe, false light, tamp and light again and have a wonderful smoke all the way to just ash. But when I'm reading or watching a movie or sitting around talking etc. I always have a relight or two. I'm starting to think the best technique is no technique at all... Or at least as little fussing as possible. YMMV
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Lestrade

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Age : 50
Location : North Carolina
Registration date : 2011-10-09

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:12 pm

s.ireland wrote:
...I'm starting to think the best technique is no technique at all... Or at least as little fussing as possible. YMMV


I have found the same. Don't make a fuss, just smoke and enjoy.
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MisterE
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Location : Mexico City
Registration date : 2009-08-24

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:11 pm

cheers cheers
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riff raff

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Location : Western Maryland
Registration date : 2011-05-24

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 7:04 pm

Get a Castello, my Sea Rock almost smokes itself!
Light and easy tamping is also my ticket to a long smoke. I can hold my $1 Brebbia pipe nail in the pipe hand, so that is handy and unnoticable.
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standardtoaster

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Age : 36
Location : Texas
Registration date : 2011-10-14

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:03 pm

Hmm, curious all of this anti-technique advice in Suspect the Pipe Techniques forum.
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mark
Admin
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Registration date : 2008-07-02

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:22 pm

SHHHHH,,,,we tell how hard it is to smoke a pipe to scare away the posers,,,,if they knew it was actually stuff & puff they'd be coming outta the woodwork.

_________________
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Sometimes I wake up grumpy. Other times I let her sleep.
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Boxerbuddy

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Location : Boston, Massachusetts
Registration date : 2011-10-06

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:57 pm

I'm doing pretty well with my relights...usually only have to relight once or twice although sometimes I have trouble keeping the bottom of the bowl lit. I'm taking the advice of the people on here and not caring about relights too much...they don't really lessen the enjoyment for me at all.
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:44 pm

mark wrote:
SHHHHH,,,,we tell how hard it is to smoke a pipe to scare away the posers,,,,if they knew it was actually stuff & puff they'd be coming outta the woodwork.

Very Happy Laughing Very Happy Laughing
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:49 pm

The truth of the matter is, if you don't do it the right way, or have to light a pipe more than once, you're less of a man, and might as well go bake us a cake.

Kidding.

When the rubber meets the road (or the vulcanite stem meets the lips), one man's technique and path to enjoyment just might be a little different than another.

Good pipe smokers are happy pipe smokers. So goes the BoB. Cool
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MisterE
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Location : Mexico City
Registration date : 2009-08-24

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Wed Oct 26, 2011 7:54 am

Well put Kyle. Cool
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Lesath

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Location : The Ozarks, well hidden and always at large
Registration date : 2011-07-22

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:29 am

I reflect back, and I can remember the learning process... Then again, it continues. As I've grown older, I have became a patient friend with the ever patient pipe. Most of my smoking time is contemplative and solitary. Relights often occur, but it doesn't matter to me. The pipe is a good friend and it pauses with me if I become focused on something other than keeping it lit. If I'm entertaining, particularly a good card game, oddly the pipe tends to unconsciously be a one light bowl. I wonder if it's not so much technique as it is mood. How you load your pipe, what you load it with, and how you light it, all play a role. Every smoke in the same pipe is a little different. Just try to be patient and enjoy the ride.
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Harlock999

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Location : Los Angeles
Registration date : 2010-10-22

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:15 am

Lesath wrote:
I reflect back, and I can remember the learning process... Then again, it continues. As I've grown older, I have became a patient friend with the ever patient pipe. Most of my smoking time is contemplative and solitary. Relights often occur, but it doesn't matter to me. The pipe is a good friend and it pauses with me if I become focused on something other than keeping it lit. If I'm entertaining, particularly a good card game, oddly the pipe tends to unconsciously be a one light bowl. I wonder if it's not so much technique as it is mood. How you load your pipe, what you load it with, and how you light it, all play a role. Every smoke in the same pipe is a little different. Just try to be patient and enjoy the ride.

Gold!
This is it, in a nutshell.
Thanks.
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standardtoaster

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Age : 36
Location : Texas
Registration date : 2011-10-14

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:58 am

Well, I did manage to smoke a pipe while hand-watering the new grass on my lawn this morning. It was my first multi-task pipe. I feel like I've reached a new level. Still not as good as the solitary contemplative pipe though. English blend.
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ADK_Pipe

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Location : Adirondacks, New York
Registration date : 2011-10-11

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Fri Oct 28, 2011 2:25 pm

I find that I usually have a first light that goes out on its own... then, while the pipe is out - I tamp it down with a finger or czech tool and light it up. That next light usually lasts the bowl.

Slow and steady wins the race Smile
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alfredo_buscatti

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Age : 63
Location : Piedmont, North Carolina
Registration date : 2007-12-17

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Sun Oct 07, 2012 9:46 pm

OK, all you slow smoking brothers, heed my question, if you would:).

I'm still trying to master slow smoking. My problem is that when the pipe is just smoldering, which is the right burn from what I know, or when I'm puffing softly and slowly and minimally, I get smoke but not enough smoke to tickle the tastebuds. I like this slow smoking but I'm not tasting much.

Do I just need to get accustomed to finding taste in less smoke?

I truly appreciate your replies!!
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monbla256

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Age : 72
Location : DFW Metroplex, Texas
Registration date : 2012-01-15

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Sun Oct 07, 2012 10:52 pm

Back in the prehistoric days of pipe smoking ( pre-interweb knowledge) most pipe smokers did just that, smoke the pipe while living their life. I saw them smoke while sitting, walking, doing yard work, working in a shop etc, etc. And in the process I saw them put the pipe down, let it go out, pick it up and re-light, time and time again. The only time I witnessed this one light thing was when I wen't to a "slow smoking" contest at a B&M back in the mid eighties. And the only folks I knew who were participated in them. For me, I light the pipe smoke it, if it goes out I re-light and keep on truckin'. This whole "one light" thing is just plain stupid !! Some times circumstances will allow me to do a one light smoke, sometimes not. Big deal Razz I can still enjoy my pipe whether I do or don't. Besides matches are cheap Razz


Last edited by monbla256 on Sun Oct 07, 2012 10:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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shootist51



Location : Indianapolis, Indiana
Registration date : 2007-12-28

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Sun Oct 07, 2012 10:52 pm

[quote="standardtoaster"]I had the hardest time for about a month trying to keep a pipe lit throughout the entire bowl. Relighting over, and over, and over. First I thought it was a moisture issue, I needed to dry out the tobacco more. Wrong. Then I thought it was a packing issue, I was packing the bowl too tight. Wrong again.

Finally, I stumbled on the one technique that made moisture and packing seemingly unimportant, and that technique is draw speed. To keep a pipe lit means drawing air slowly through the pipe. The slower the better.

My first instinct when smoking a pipe was to take a quick, short draw, pulling air through the pipe at a relatively fast speed to fan the flame. In reality, this just extinguishes the burning tobacco. The slow draw will pull heat down through the underlying tobacco, warming it up for burning and drying out.



And here is a photo of my current pipe tool:
[/quote






This is what we are talkind about when we say SIP the smoke.
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MisterE
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Location : Mexico City
Registration date : 2009-08-24

PostSubject: Re: The Pipe for Noobs: There is No Pipe Technique   Sun Oct 07, 2012 11:14 pm

Alfredo, in a nutshell, yes.

I know what you mean, though. Sometimes it seems like there's not as much flavor in a micro-puff. It's actually a little counterintuitive to smoke that way as well. One thing I like to do when I relight is not to light the entire surface area, but rather just in the middle. It burns mostly down the center of the bowl and tends to keep the overall temperature down, yet give a very flavorful smoke. If I take a bigger puff at some point, it still stays relatively cool. The tobacco around the edge of the bowl will fall into the center as you go. Give it a shot.
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