Bad Savinelli?

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fadingdaylight

Preferred Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,194
0
I recently picked up a Savinelli 316ks from my local B&M. Later that day I realized it was a "Savinelli Product" pipe. Long story short, the bowl had a minor burnout during the first smoke (1/3 packed, slow smoked). The briar seems too light to be true, like someone accidentally loaded the balsa wood onto the pipe assembly line... By the end of the day I dropped it, from just below knee height and managed to snap the tenon and crack the shank. Now, I have heard nothing but praise for Sav, but this left a real bad taste in my mouth. I have other pipes, even a no name, $40 pipe, that have taken far more abuse, fallen further, and been smoked hotter that are just fine. At $85 bucks, I would expect better of this highly reputable company. I managed to open up the shank a little with a Dremel, and fit an old churchwarden stem into it, so its (barely) usable again, but I dont think I will ever buy another Sav. Anyone else had issues like this?

 

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
25,960
128
fadingdaylight, I'm sorry to hear about your bad experience. Like a lot of Savenelli owners, I have nothing but

happy talk to report about my Savs -- two unfinished briars that have lasted forever and smoke great; an Oscar

Lucite, and a 601 churchwarden. My only suspected "Sav product" pipe is a big Group 5 bent billiard sold as a

house pipe that is stamped only "Italy," not even with the name of the "house." Sav has worked hard to double

back to capture more of the low-end market, like with rougher finishes and a whole separate line of Rossi pipes,

all at lower prices. In the process, they have apparently produced your unfortunate pipe that is a turkey. Your

story offends me especially because at $85, there is a world of great briars. Smokingpipe.com recently finally

sold a nifty little Luciano straight Dublin that was priced at $85, and during Valentines and International Pipe

Smoking Day sales, some great pipes came within the $85 reach. So there's no excuse. I'm not sure I'd go back

to that B&M, but if you do, I'd explain the problem. They aren't going to refund or replace the pipe, but if they

want you as a customer, they might give you a discount on the next pipe. In your place, I wouldn't buy another

Sav, not any time soon.

 

peter70

Member
May 24, 2013
175
0
Yes, Savinelli pipes are among the lightest, relative to size, but this is something I am going for, because in my experience, the lighter the pipe, the better it smokes. Burnout is bad luck. No maker can look inside the wood. Why did you not bring it back for an exchange? At $85 I would have done that.

How much damage a fall does, is purely luck or bad luck, how the pipe hits the ground. That the tenon and shank broke is nothing I would see as bad quality when the pipe hits the ground in a certain angle.

 

fadingdaylight

Preferred Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,194
0
@mso489 - Thank you. I did tell them what happened, but I don't really expect them to make good on Savinelli's end,

in the end, I bought an different pipe from SP. I really blame myself overall for not doing a better QC

check.
@peter70 - You are right to a degree. However, after looking at the shank I noticed that the briar on top

bottom of the hole was only about 1/16 of an inch thick. Were talking 3 sheets of paper. But again, my

fault for not checking everything more thoroughly.

 

peter70

Member
May 24, 2013
175
0
Well, "Savinelli products" are seconds from Savinelli, e.g. the Siena line, or Pisa. They might have a few fills, but generally are good pipes from the same wood as the firsts. I have a 320 KS from the Siena line, which smoked very well from the start. I checked on the 316 KS shape and it doesn't look too thin, but it might have been misdrilled. If your burnout happened around/above the draw hole, I am afraid, that the 1/3 break in was not optimal for this pipe, because you tend to suck the initial light right through this hole.

 

fadingdaylight

Preferred Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,194
0
@Peter70- the burnout was actually along one side of the bowl, probably just a flaw. And you may be right about the misdrilling. The whole pipe seemed excessivly warm when used. Mine was "Sitting" line pipe.
@Sam- I've been looking around at estates for a while now, but have yet to take the plunge. Perhaps its about that time.

 

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
25,960
128
fadingdaylight, with estates, I'd start out with SP that offers them completely sanitized and ready to smoke. You

will know what you are getting, pretty much. If you need a briar pipe at a good price, new, and aren't ready to

invest a lot, some good lower priced pipes are Iwan Ries Exclusives made by Benton in the USA, both compacts

and medium size pipes available; Chapuis-Comoy from Tobaccopipes.com, but be sure to look for the "Add To Cart"

icon, since their inventory is quite thin; and PTM Amadeus back over at Iwan Ries, nice Grecian briar at good prices.

There are plenty more, but those are some I've bought and found better than average smoking pipes.

 

spartan

Preferred Member
Aug 14, 2011
2,964
0
1) No one can see or predict flaws within a block of wood, or within a pipe.
2) If the "burn out" was minor it could probably be fixed with some pipe mud.
3) If you drop something you can't be mad that it broke. Well you can lol, just not at Sav.
I really blame myself overall for not doing a better QC

check.
The first $100 I spent on a pipe I sent back because the stain was rubbed off on the top and there was a small pit inside the pipe. Luckily I held off on smoking it and asked the forum members here what I should do. Most everyone said to return it and get another because maybe the pit would lead to a burnout, or maybe not. The fact was that it would always be on my mind while I was smoking it. Very happy I exchanged it for another Racing Green Peterson Churchwarden.
Great smoker.

 

fadingdaylight

Preferred Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,194
0
@mso489- Right now I have a good Stanwell and a Rattray's, along with my Savistein monster. I don't exactly need another briar right this minute, but hey, who does... and I will definitely stick to SP for estates until I know my way around them a bit more.
@spartan- Im not exactly mad at them, but with all the hype I was really looking forward to my first Sav, but it just ended up a disaster. I realize that flaws happen, but in the end I think that the pipe was just poorly made. Sure, it fell, all of 18 inches. My other pipes would laugh at that if they could. In the end, if all your friends told you Denny's was the greatest, but you ended up with food poisoning, you might not want to eat there anymore. Thats kinda where I'm at with Savinelli.

 

drwatson

Preferred Member
Aug 3, 2010
1,720
0
toledo
Funny thing! I had a Savinelli Roma 316 that got some burnout on the first bowl was about 1/4 x 1/4 inch about half way down. This would be the first and only problem I have ever had with any of my Savinelli's. Maybe it's the shape?? With mine I just packed alittle pipe mud in the side and use is as a junk pipe now. It is hard to see inside the wood to see if there may be a pocket which might cause burnout. This has not turned bme away from the brand, and I sure it is very disappointing.