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Question about MacQueen Pipes...

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dean73

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Hello Gents!

I was thinking about getting a MacQueen pipe. Possiblly a "Ranger" pipe.

I have visited other forums a while back and I saw a lot of mixed reviews. It seems people either love or hate MacQueen pipes. I have heard they gurgle like crazy and that the stems crack bacuase of the metal insert. On the other hand, I have heard that they look and smoke great.

I already have a wood stem churchwarden that I purchased at Bristol Ren Faire in Wisconsin. It smokes OK, but the smoking end of the stem is not as smooth as I would like. I tried to sand it down a bit, but it does not seem to help.

Back to the question...does anyone have experience with MacQueen???

Thanks for the help in advance...
 

JJPHOTO

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I was just wondering the same thing and found this old thread - thought I'd give it a bump.
 

Mikem

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I know at one time and I think another board (possibly Smokers Forums???) this subject was banted about a couple of times. If my recollection is correct the biggest complaint of the pipes were the drilling at the bottom of the bowl. It seems the biggest complaint was because the air hole was drilled dead center to the bottom of the bowl, much like a Lepeltier clay pipe. As far as the larger stem/wooden bit goes, I have a Vauen Lord of the Rings Aragorn with a large stem/bit and it really has never bothered me. People must like the MacQueens because it seems that they sell a lot of them on various sites. I was going to purchase a MacQueen many years ago but the Vauen became available (at a much higher price then the MacQueens) so I purchased it out of Germany (Esterval's) and have been very happy with it.
 

JJPHOTO

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Mikem":al9639as said:
If my recollection is correct the biggest complaint of the pipes were the drilling at the bottom of the bowl. It seems the biggest complaint was because the air hole was drilled dead center to the bottom of the bowl, much like a Lepeltier clay pipe.
Could you elaborate on this a bit more for me? So it's not on the edge of the bowl but at the very bottom? I would think that would mean that there would be potential there for a wet smoke.
 

Mikem

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JJPHOTO":0bplc8t4 said:
Mikem":0bplc8t4 said:
If my recollection is correct the biggest complaint of the pipes were the drilling at the bottom of the bowl. It seems the biggest complaint was because the air hole was drilled dead center to the bottom of the bowl, much like a Lepeltier clay pipe.
Could you elaborate on this a bit more for me? So it's not on the edge of the bowl but at the very bottom? I would think that would mean that there would be potential there for a wet smoke.
Yes, it is my understanding (and this might have changed since then) that the air hole is directly in the center at the bottom of the bowl. I too would think that this would make for a wetter smoke (especially with aromatics). I did an internet search and came up with this thread that talks about the "center" drilled hole. Hope this helps.
http://forum.pipes.org/~discus/discus/messages/26/75834.html?1234707286
 

whiskeywillow

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I'd like to bump this thread because I've recently been gifted a MacQueen pipe, and while it's in transit I'd like to get some idea of what I have in store from me. Has anyone had any more recent experiences than 2009? Specifically, I will soon be the owner of the wizard pipe which is a churchwarden with a cherrywood bowl. Any feedback on whether this would be a good pipe for aromatics?
 

cigarstorejay

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MacQueen makes fine fantasy themed pipes. They are all handmade and of good quality. You can't buy a MacQueen and expect to get a Dunhill, but you can get a good smoking pipe at a great price.

Cherry wood is an excellent material for pipe making and for aromatics. They can sweeten the tobaccos a bit over time. I have smoked many different tobaccos out of a MacQueen pipe and found them good for just about any tobacco. They recently updated their work shop to have better and more efficient manufacturing.


Disclaimer: I am a MacQueen reseller and do believe strongly in their pipes. While they are not for everyone, they are the best pipes of their particular style and price point that you can get.
 

SpeedyPete

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I've ordered a MacQueens Wizard on the 19th of March and I'm still waiting for it. I've chosen the briar bowl and maybe they are waiting for the burls to develop. I hope I will have it by Christmas.
 

SpeedyPete

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Received my MacQueens Wizard today, 4 months after order was placed. It's a good smoker but an ugly looker. I could have bought a fine pipe for $69.00.
 

cigarstorejay

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SpeedyPete":f7py5w5n said:
Received my MacQueens Wizard today, 4 months after order was placed. It's a good smoker but an ugly looker. I could have bought a fine pipe for $69.00.
You did buy a fine pipe for $69. As the pipe looks exactly like the one in the picture that prompted you to buy it, I might ask why did you purchase it? The 4 months is a legit gripe. That sucks that you had to wait that long.

For $69 dollars shipped, you get a pipe that smokes well and looks exactly like the pipe on their website.
 

tslots

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SpeedyPete":0jr7w2h5 said:
Received my MacQueens Wizard today, 4 months after order was placed. It's a good smoker but an ugly looker. I could have bought a fine pipe for $69.00.
Buyer's remorse?

Out of curiosity - what do you feel qualifies as a "fine pipe for $69"?
 

Lesath

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In regards to your potential buyers remorse, I suggest giving the MacQueen a chance. It's been well over a year ago, that I had determined I needed one. I ordered the Wizard with a briar bowl and waited a little over six months to take delivery. MacQueen was very communicative and presented me with a half off coupon for a future purchase, due to the excessive wait. As for the pipe itself, I can say that in appearance, it was exactly what I expected. Performance wise, I will start by saying that current manufacturing practices no longer place the drilling in the center of the bowl, it is in a more traditional location. The first bowl I loaded was Escudo, with the intent of taking my time. I found it an enjoyable smoke, my suggestion being to look upon the MacQueen as a sipping pipe. Oddly, when I purchased it, I intended to use it in the Winter months for latakia blends; I use it exclusively with Virginias, as it worked so well off the line. I do suggest that you follow the instructions included for the maintenance. As I recall, you opted for the cherry wood bowl. This will take longer to break in, so be sure to take your time; after all smoking a pipe is leisure time. I hope you grow to enjoy your new pipe, and congratulations.
 

SpeedyPete

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tslots":51qb0aph said:
SpeedyPete":51qb0aph said:
Received my MacQueens Wizard today, 4 months after order was placed. It's a good smoker but an ugly looker. I could have bought a fine pipe for $69.00.
Buyer's remorse?

Out of curiosity - what do you feel qualifies as a "fine pipe for $69"?
No buyers remorse. You should see the drilling, "tenon" etc to appreciate what I'm talking about. It looks as if this pipe was made by an amateur at home.

I recently bought 2 Sasienis, a Savinelli 320KS, a Parker, a Stanwell Royal Guard and a Barber B-Line, all of them for LESS than $69.00 each. And I received all of them within 3 weeks.
 

SpeedyPete

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Lesath":l1ubqyo6 said:
As I recall, you opted for the cherry wood bowl. This will take longer to break in, so be sure to take your time; after all smoking a pipe is leisure time. I hope you grow to enjoy your new pipe, and congratulations.
Thank you!!

No, I've got the briar bowl and I must say, it smokes OK even though it's not broken in yet. Sipping the pipe is quite nice and I'm sure I will use it a lot.

What did you do to get rid of the dye on the bit? It tastes bitter and I'm not sure what to used to clean it up.

MacQueens gave me $25.00 credit to use on my next pipe but........??? I will decide about that later :lol:
 

SpeedyPete

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cigarstorejay":kok2dmk8 said:
SpeedyPete":kok2dmk8 said:
Received my MacQueens Wizard today, 4 months after order was placed. It's a good smoker but an ugly looker. I could have bought a fine pipe for $69.00.
You did buy a fine pipe for $69. As the pipe looks exactly like the one in the picture that prompted you to buy it, I might ask why did you purchase it? The 4 months is a legit gripe. That sucks that you had to wait that long.

For $69 dollars shipped, you get a pipe that smokes well and looks exactly like the pipe on their website.
I agree that the pipe looks exactly like the one in the picture and by calling it ugly, I did not refer to it's looks.

What I could not see is that there is NO way one can pass a pipe cleaner through the shank, neither could I see the metal tenon, nor the rough drilling which blocked the stem. So my problem is the finish on the pipe which is lacking, and not the looks

This pipe should sell for no more than $20.00
 

Lesath

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The dye on the bit can be resolved with either very fine steel wool, or 600 grit paper. After that, hit it with a little wax or a food grade oil such as tung or olive. It won't take much, and simply rub it in. I do question your difficulty passing a pipe cleaner and the off center drilling. If it's as notable as it sounds, you might consider contacting MacQueen through their website. I'm pretty sure they will try to do you right.
 

cigarstorejay

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SpeedyPete":6r7g6z0z said:
cigarstorejay":6r7g6z0z said:
SpeedyPete":6r7g6z0z said:
Received my MacQueens Wizard today, 4 months after order was placed. It's a good smoker but an ugly looker. I could have bought a fine pipe for $69.00.
You did buy a fine pipe for $69. As the pipe looks exactly like the one in the picture that prompted you to buy it, I might ask why did you purchase it? The 4 months is a legit gripe. That sucks that you had to wait that long.

For $69 dollars shipped, you get a pipe that smokes well and looks exactly like the pipe on their website.
What I could not see is that there is NO way one can pass a pipe cleaner through the shank, neither could I see the metal tenon, nor the rough drilling which blocked the stem.

This pipe should sell for no more than $20.00
$20 is a pretty arbitrary number. Maybe you got a lemon? I was able to pass a cleaner through the shank, took a little maneuvering, but I was able to do it to the 10 wizards I have sitting in front of me. I was able to pass one through the stems as well. The metal tenon doesn't affect the smoking of the pipe really at all. Maybe you should contact them and ask for a refund if you are that unhappy with the pipe.
 

cigarstorejay

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Lesath":hoahy1la said:
The dye on the bit can be resolved with either very fine steel wool, or 600 grit paper. After that, hit it with a little wax or a food grade oil such as tung or olive. It won't take much, and simply rub it in. I do question your difficulty passing a pipe cleaner and the off center drilling. If it's as notable as it sounds, you might consider contacting MacQueen through their website. I'm pretty sure they will try to do you right.
I couldn't agree more. They are good people who genuinely want to do right by their customers.

 

SpeedyPete

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Lesath":fpr8f14n said:
The dye on the bit can be resolved with either very fine steel wool, or 600 grit paper. After that, hit it with a little wax or a food grade oil such as tung or olive. It won't take much, and simply rub it in. I do question your difficulty passing a pipe cleaner and the off center drilling. If it's as notable as it sounds, you might consider contacting MacQueen through their website. I'm pretty sure they will try to do you right.
I'm not expecting MacQueens to do anything for me. I had to wait 4 months for the pipe, don't want to wait 4 years for them to respond to a complaint.

I don't know whether your pipe was drilled differently from mine. On my pipe, the hole through the shank, was drilled like any other pipe. From the bowl, it was drilled straight down. So, the two holes sit at a 90° angle to each other. There is no way that a pipe cleaner will pass through.

The pipe smokes quite nice, especially with flakes. So I'm not even thinking of returning it for a refund or replacement.

What put me off is the finish of the pipe, a chip on the bowl ring, the drilling, the metal tenon which isn't true. The pipe looks shabby over all.

But I will live with it. I mean, what can one expect for $69.00? At our exchance rate, it worked out at R485.00 for me.

I did buy a Parker which, as you know, is made in the Dunhill factory. This is one beautiful pipe, it's a dream pipe and it's cost me R242.00. I received it yesterday, 8 days after I've placed my order.

I always wanted a true churchwarden and now I've got one. Maybe churchwardens are not the tidiest of people around and the pipemaker kept that in mind :lol:

 

StilettoII

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I realize this is an old thread and I wish I had seen this before placing my order. So I thought I would add my more recent experience.

It appears their customer service really has not improved. I had placed an order last December (2011), hoping I would have my pipes by February. Within the time promised, they updated my account to Shipped (this was in Feb). After waiting a couple weeks, I sent several emails to enquire how long it should take and it was weeks before they would respond. Finally they admitted that the pipes in fact did NOT ship and somehow got misplaced. After several emails back and forth over the course of a couple of weeks or more (sometimes they would respond quickly, other times they would not respond for days or a week) I said I would only accept the order if they reshipped it with tracking and expedited shipping. I finally got my pipes in late April or early May.

The Wizard pipe, I was fairly happy with. It wasn't quite what I was hoping, (seemed darker than the pictures). The joint where the stem meets the bowl was not as smooth a transition as I hoped but still overall I liked the look of the pipe. Smoking it, I do really enjoy! I am not an experienced pipe smoker but this had a very nice draw and the smoke was nice and cool as I hoped.

At this time I also ordered a Tempest pipe for a friend. This one looked nice but had a very small crack in the bowl where the stem goes in. My concern was this would be a weak point and eventually break from removing/inserting the stem for cleaning. I immediately emailed MacQueen, who again, did not respond for days, almost a week or more. They claim to have a 100% satisfaction warranty and agreed (after a time) to send a replacement bowl. I again would hear nothing for a week or two and only after sending multiple emails did they finally claim they were going to mail out the replacement "Next week". This was back in June. Since then I have not received the replacement, nor have they responded to a single follow up email I have sent.

My friend does enjoy smoking his pipe and he will be especially careful when removing the stem and putting it back.

My recommendation is, if you want a MacQueen pipe, do not order directly from them. Order it through a vendor and ONLY when they are in stock. I've actually seen some of their pipes on eBay for the same price as direct. Perhaps order that way.

If their customer support wasn't so lacking and had they actually sent me the replacement as promised, I would not hesitate to buy again from them in spite of the wait. But, as it stands now, even though I really enjoying smoking the pipe, I will not order another one from them unless it's from eBay or from a vendor that has what I want in stock. I will be looking for another brand to buy as a second pipe.

I hope this helps others make an educated decision.

Regards,
Bob
 
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