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I tossed a pipe today - budget options?

JCinPA

The Lather Maestro
@RookieGuy Thanks for the photo and info! I'd like to try refurbing an older pipe or three, but I am glad people here are enthusiastic about the Bones line as smokers. I absolutely don't give a rip about cosmetic defects, and I've seen some interesting things done with them, like one fellow who made a dark green pipe with some Feibing's dye.

Good to know you don't have to spend over $100 to find good smokers that look nice, too. I'm just not a collectible kind of pipe guy.
 
Yeah, the options are certainly out there. You can get a good pipe by spending pretty much whatever you want. I haven't gotten into serious restoration of estate pipes yet. But I have no problem with simple sprucing up previously loved pipes, vodka treatments and sanitizing the stems. I feel the rougher edges give it some character.

Eventually I hope to acquire a Bones soley for the purposes of finishing it. Sand it smooth and give it a nice gunstock stain. But I have too many projects ahead of it at the moment.
 

JCinPA

The Lather Maestro
I'm really liking the Bones bent Rhodesian at cup o joes. I'm trying not to impulse buy something yet. But I like the partial bents so much more than the full bents, and I love bulldogs. That bent Rhodesian is calling my name.

Probably shouldn't post in here with you guys looking for encouraging restraint, I suppose. What was I thinking? :lol:

P.S. Read up on Arbutus pipes a bit. Lighter, less hard, but durable enough? No problems? As good as (or almost) briar?
 
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I'm really liking the Bones bent Rhodesian at cup o joes. I'm trying not to impulse buy something yet. But I like the partial bents so much more than the full bents, and I love bulldogs. That bent Rhodesian is calling my name.

Probably shouldn't post in here with you guys looking for encouraging restraint, I suppose. What was I thinking? :lol:

P.S. Read up on Arbutus pipes a bit. Lighter, less hard, but durable enough? No problems? As good as (or almost) briar?
Thinking about your situation some more ...

You might be happiest to start, especially for smoking some completely new blends indoors, with a brand new, basic, under $50 pipe. All your old pipes that have lived on Englishes and CB, and many unrestored Estates, are going to be settled into other blends and/or other smokers' habits. You will have ghosts, and will have to excise them, or live with the the Captain's distant wails. Save the Estates for later projects. You want to enjoy great pipe smoking now.

So start with a new, clean vessel for your indoor journey. A modest one.

There are still plenty of choices, even at that very modest price point. I would lean towards a briar over a cob or other material, as it is ultimately a more predictable and versatile smoking substance. Alternate wood materials can sometimes prove difficult, as one other gentleman here recently discovered. Briar is absolutely proven. And there are surprisingly many decent smoking new briar choices out there for under $50. Well under $50 in some cases.

As you seem to be doing, I would also consider either a straight or a slight bent over anything more complicated. Keep it easy to smoke, and easy to maintain.

The Bones gets good reviews here, and ok reviews elsewhere. Seems like a very nice pipe, for about $55 delivered. It is a completely unfinished pipe based on selected seconds, which means you don't have to be too careful with it. The other popular low priced new option remains a Grabow. A couple years ago I bought and auditioned a new one here that cost only $29. It was a very nice smoker. I liked it so much I wound up keeping it until my son swiped it. I mean it when I say you can't go wrong with one. My son swears by them, and he is even bigger cheapskate than I am.

There are quite a few other new pipe lines that dip into the sub-$50 range, but I have not smoked any of them. WV Smokeshop seems the present king of the low-priced new pipe lines, and he has dozens of them priced well under $50. Some as low as $20. No offense to the Bones fans, but some of them I think are better finished items than the Bones for less money or a couple dollars more. I encourage you to check out his line card. It may surprise you.

As far as Arbutus, I would go with the more traditional briar if if comes at the same price.

But definitely go brand new for the first one. You'll know exactly what all these new indoor blends are supposed to taste like.
 
. . . There are still plenty of choices, even at that very modest price point. I would lean towards a briar over a cob or other material, as it is ultimately a more predictable and versatile smoking substance. Alternate wood materials can sometimes prove difficult, as one other gentleman here recently discovered. . . .
You mean me, with my hardwood from Missouri Meerschaum? It's been settling down, the few times I've smoked it recently. With the shank now properly glued into place, it smokes easily, though the draft is rather like a subway tunnel. No more burning wood scent -- though I didn't mind that. I've smoked some of my regular codger blends in it now instead of the GC Gentleman Caller, and it's good for a quick smoke.

Not sure I'd buy another, though, when there are so many nice briars out there.
 

JCinPA

The Lather Maestro
You guys are awesome! Thanks, @Columbo Good advice! I think I will get a decent new pipe or two that has not had a lot of English run through it, and dedicate it (them) to just codger blends. Wife is reacting very well to all of them and has positively commented on 1-Q and SWRA. I think that is great advice.

My older pipes I can keep for my English stuff (I think I'll smoke a pipe more in the warm months, in addition to cigars), and then I can goof around with collecting/refurbishing. Sounds like a great plan.

I'd rather get good drawing, no filter or metal bits pipes for this. I know there are a lot of options out there.

P.S. Do Grabow come without the metal inserts??
 
You guys are awesome! Thanks, @Columbo Good advice! I think I will get a decent new pipe or two that has not had a lot of English run through it, and dedicate it (them) to just codger blends. Wife is reacting very well to all of them and has positively commented on 1-Q and SWRA. I think that is great advice.

My older pipes I can keep for my English stuff (I think I'll smoke a pipe more in the warm months, in addition to cigars), and then I can goof around with collecting/refurbishing. Sounds like a great plan.

I'd rather get good drawing, no filter or metal bits pipes for this. I know there are a lot of options out there.

P.S. Do Grabow come without the metal inserts??
Today’s modern Grabows are 6mm filter pipes. No stingers anymore. But many pipe smokers, me included, smoke them ‘naked’ (no filter), and they smoke great. A carton of 120 filters is around $12 if you ever do … and the filters fit most cobs, too.
 
You mean me, with my hardwood from Missouri Meerschaum? It's been settling down, the few times I've smoked it recently. With the shank now properly glued into place, it smokes easily, though the draft is rather like a subway tunnel. No more burning wood scent -- though I didn't mind that. I've smoked some of my regular codger blends in it now instead of the GC Gentleman Caller, and it's good for a quick smoke.

Not sure I'd buy another, though, when there are so many nice briars out there.
... yes. Glad it is coming around for you, though. Difficult pipes can turn into projects.
 
I remember the day when you needed a new pipe, you'd walk into the local pharmacy and buy a Dr. Grabow off the shelf. I haven't seen their display for years.
 
I remember the day when you needed a new pipe, you'd walk into the local pharmacy and buy a Dr. Grabow off the shelf. I haven't seen their display for years.
The local walgreens pharmacies in my area still stock and sell dr grabows and Missouri meerschaum cobs. Not a full display though. Just a few of random shapes. It is enough to tempt me to grab one if I'm there and one catches my eye though 🤣
 
The local walgreens pharmacies in my area still stock and sell dr grabows and Missouri meerschaum cobs. Not a full display though. Just a few of random shapes. It is enough to tempt me to grab one if I'm there and one catches my eye though 🤣
I've seen like 4 at my local Walgreens I've been curious about Grabows, but I can't stand the way the rusticated ones look, not even as a sacrificial Lakeland pipe. If I can find a smooth one there, I just might have to pull the trigger.
 
I've seen like 4 at my local Walgreens I've been curious about Grabows, but I can't stand the way the rusticated ones look, not even as a sacrificial Lakeland pipe. If I can find a smooth one there, I just might have to pull the trigger.
Yeah the modern wormy looking rustication can be hit or miss. I'm usually not a fan of it either but found a dublin with it that I didn't mind it on. I much prefer the rustication on the older vintage pipes. Their line rustication was neat and the older standard rustication was less wormy haha.

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I only smoke budget pipes as I am mostly a cigar smoker. Pipe smoking is enjoyable in small doses for me. The Savinelli unfinished and the Bones pipes are both quite awesome and smoke really well. Relatively inexpensive. And they look great for low end pipes.
 
Have at it, boys. $26, delivered. He's selling what appears to be a carton of them, in various shapes.


And this lady has one for a buck less, with a trim ring.


I much prefer the smooth finished ones over the Dremel-rusticateds, and this is not my preferred shape at all (I would pass). So proceed accordingly. Nevertheless, go find another decent brand new pipe for $25. It's not easy.

But new Grabows for peanuts (under $30) pop up there all the time, so you can wait for whatever you like. My son got a really nice army mount one there not that long ago, for under $30.
 
Have at it, boys. $26, delivered. He's selling what appears to be a carton of them, in various shapes.


And this lady has one for a buck less, with a trim ring.


I much prefer the smooth finished ones over the Dremel-rusticateds, and this is not my preferred shape at all (I would pass). So proceed accordingly. Nevertheless, go find another decent brand new pipe for $25. It's not easy.

But new Grabows for peanuts (under $30) pop up there all the time, so you can wait for whatever you like. My son got a really nice army mount one there not that long ago, for under $30.
Didn't buy one of those but I did poke around ebay and grabbed a dr grabow just now... 🤣🤦‍♂️
 

JCinPA

The Lather Maestro
I discovered today I don't need more pipes. I just need to toss the crap ones. So I tossed one I could not get a cleaner through and which had always given me trouble, then I posted a favorite Comoy last night in POTD thread. I'm about to post a GBD british pipe in there. I have plenty of good smokers, I just need to unload the garbage I've picked up over the years before getting any more. :D
 
I discovered today I don't need more pipes. I just need to toss the crap ones. So I tossed one I could not get a cleaner through and which had always given me trouble, then I posted a favorite Comoy last night in POTD thread. I'm about to post a GBD british pipe in there. I have plenty of good smokers, I just need to unload the garbage I've picked up over the years before getting any more. :D
When I came back to the pipe at the start of this year after ca. 15 years away, I discovered the same. My Savinelli billiard, Peterson No. 307, and my bent apples and billiards were still fantastic smokers. There were a few whose shapes no longer appealed to me; I wound up trading those for new-to-me estate pipes, and I've bought one or two brand-new briars. But the core of my collection was still great.
 

AimlessWanderer

Remember to forget me!
I too went through something similar. Initially, the serial gurglers with high drafts were booted out, then the clays, then some hardwoods, and then finally, anything that wouldn't sit.

With pipe cleaners, I've come to accept that some pipes (particularly bent pipes), won't always pass a pipe cleaner right down into the bowl. So long as i can get a pipe cleaner down to the mortice with stem attached, so I can stop an occasional gurgle, and I can clean stem and stummel separately, I'm quite content.

Even now, some of my pipes smoke better than others, but I don't currently own any pipes that I don't enjoy smoking.
 

Hirsute

Used to have fun with Commander Yellow Pantyhose
I'm really liking the Bones bent Rhodesian at cup o joes. I'm trying not to impulse buy something yet. But I like the partial bents so much more than the full bents, and I love bulldogs. That bent Rhodesian is calling my name.

Probably shouldn't post in here with you guys looking for encouraging restraint, I suppose. What was I thinking? :lol:

P.S. Read up on Arbutus pipes a bit. Lighter, less hard, but durable enough? No problems? As good as (or almost) briar?

Arbutus is a fine material for pipes. Paolo Becker, who was a great pipe maker from Italy made lots of pipes from arbutus (aka "strawberry wood"). I have a couple of arbutus pipes, and they smoke well. They taste a little different than briar, especially on break in, and I find that arbutus tastes woody until it's well broken in. Arbutus sandblasts really distinctively and can look really great.
 
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