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Breaking in a Peterson

(28 posts)
  • Started 2 years ago by The Pipe Monk
  • Latest reply from jpmcwjr
  1. disinformatique

    The Pipe Monk

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    Salutations Ladies and Gentlemen,

    I do not own any Peterson High-Grade/Upper Grade pipes so my experience is based on Peterson's Entry Level and Christmas Pipes. ($80-$125). These pipes take extremely long time to break-in, I usually smoke the same pipe in my collection about 3-4 times a week (depending on the blend of course). For example the Peterson 2014 Christmas, took almost a year to become a really nice smoker. The same is the case with the 2015 Peterson Christmas pipe, it has now begun to smoke better.

    Is the break-in period all normal or is something wrong?

    What have been your experience with Peterson Pipes. Do let me know.

    Cheers,
    Chris

    Albert Einstein was once quoted as saying, “I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgment in all human affairs.” One of the reasons behind this statement is that pipe smoking is meant to be a slow leisurely activity. It takes patience to smoke a pipe. Unlike cigarettes and cigars, there is a certain amount of technique to smoking a pipe. Where cigars and cigarettes can just be picked up, lit and puffed on, pipes require the development of a technique in order to get the best smoking experience.
    Posted 2 years ago #
  2. cynicismandsugar

    Jeffrey Deal

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    I was just speaking with the "pipe guy" at my local B&M about this topic.

    Every pipe is different; some are easy break-ins, some are more stubborn. My (and his) personal experience with Peterson pipes are that they can be, on the whole, a bit temperamental. He said that he had actually given up on buying new Petersons, until their supplier had gifted him a new one once, in order to make amends over some drama. He went on to say that that particular Peterson ended up breaking in and smoking great.

    Most of my Peterson Christmas pipes broke in relatively quickly, but there was this one 2015 version that had I had the hardest time with. It took a couple of months of break-in, and then letting it rest for an entire year, before it started smoking well.

    These are just my personal experiences on the matter, ymmv.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  3. wyfbane

    wyfbane

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    My Dracula fits in those parameters. It took about 15 bowls. Not terrible. But with the amount of Pete's I have purchased in the last 6 months, I may never get them broken in even with 15 bowls. lol

    Posted 2 years ago #
  4. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Pretty much my experience. Two Arans I got a couple of years ago needed over 30 bowls each before they "went good". A spigot billiard started out well and has remained so. I've guessed that some of the briar wasn't as aged or cured as well as it could have been, or maybe just wasn't the best to start with- or a bit of both!

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 2 years ago #
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    jensen

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    No problems high or lower grades.......but I have two Dunhills..........I also have Dunhills smoking fine etc.
    etc.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  6. derfatdutchman

    derfatdutchman

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    I guess I lucked out, of my seven Peterson's the only one that had a hard break in was my Kinsale XL20.

    "The value of tobacco is best understood when it is the last you possess, and there is no chance of getting more."
    Bismark
    Posted 2 years ago #
  7. dottiewarden

    dottiewarden

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    All my Petersons have come with the pre coated bowls, but I have still noticed progressive performance improvement over time with about a 30 bowls being the maximum. My Chacoms come with bare wood and the break in period is similar. It seems pipes just like to be smoked, Peterson or otherwise.

    Dot
    Posted 2 years ago #
  8. mso489

    mso489

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    Petersons do take more smokes than most pipes, although they do reach satisfactory in a dozen or so bowls, and then it takes about year in the rotation to really smoke well. I have a K&P author that I'd given up on, but it eventually came along nicely, but it was two years or more before I noticed it was really quite good. Do they over-coat the bowls? Is the briar not aged quite enough? Is it the humidity in Ireland that affects their storage? My Petes are good pipes, none with quality control issues, but they are slow to unfold, it's true. I've visited Ireland twice, and it is an odd climate. The weather can change four or five or more distinct times during the day. Some areas are so mild, maybe from the Gulf Stream (?) that they actually have palm trees. It doesn't surprise me that briar might lead a different existence on the Emerald Isle.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  9. chasingembers

    Embers

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    I smoke all my new pipes twice a day for a week. All full bowls, and clean up with pipe cleaners after each smoke. After a week, a nice carbon layer is in the bowl, and I give the pipe at least a week before I smoke it again. I usually only buy pipes with no bowl coating, but when I do get one with it, I remove it with sandpaper.

    Damnation seize my soul if I give you quarters, or take any from you.
    -Edward Teach
    Posted 2 years ago #
  10. irishearl

    irishearl

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    I've often heard the claim that Petes take a while to break in but that has never been true for me-or maybe I'm easy to please.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  11. chasingembers

    Embers

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    I eventually will get something from the Sherlock Holmes line to see what the fuss is about, but sadly, Peterson is far down on my acquisition list.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  12. josephcross

    josephcross

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    Its taken about 20 bowls on my Dracula, and just now Im starting to see its potential, i also have a tankard thats taken about a year to break in. It was really fussy, but Im glad I didnt give up on it, because it smokes those VAs so nicely. That being said, my other pipes are Savinellis which both smoked awesomely from the get go, as well as a Stanwell which was the same.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  13. saltedplug

    saltedplug

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    When I was new I heard stories of the extended break-in time for Pete's, but then again at that time they were dipping their pipes. That penny-pinching practice left me with a decidedly negative opinion of their pipes such that I own nary a one. But this thread has been enlightening as I read that Petes are still a chore in this regard. But as the Pete problem persists, I stand forewarned to avoid them forever.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  14. davet

    davet

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    I've never had any problems with "breaking in" any of my Pete's, fill with tobacco, light and smoke. No problem.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  15. mikestanley

    mikestanley

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    In my limited experience with Petersons, the dip staining can be a bigger. It left mine with a taste to the briar that did not seem to improve. Nowadays, if I had those pipes, I would scrub the devil out of the mortise and draft hole with bristle pipecleaners soaked in alcohol and sand out the bowl a bit. Neither occurred to me back then.

    Mike S.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  16. hardwood

    hardwood

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    Great info, I'm new again. Had a Dr. Grabow 30yrs. ago and then stopped. Just started back 3 months ago. I right off wanted a Pete. But not there yet. I'm not sure what a pipe that is not broken in acts like, I bought a cheap Yellobow Zolu and it may be "that pipe that's just not good" or it may not be braking in well. I received as Christmas gifts two pipes. One a kit pipe from pipes and Cigars, a Cassillero 125, $40 pipe and it's a great smoker right out of the bag. I've got to where it's my goto. The other was a Bjorn Viking Church Warden, now it is the smoothest coolest thing yet for me, right out of the bag. With the YelloBow I did the 1/4 bowl, 1/2 bowl, full bowl thing and with the others I just smoked them full bowl.
    Thanks guys
    PS still have the Dr.Graybo and it still smokes good

    Posted 2 years ago #
  17. backwoodsjack

    backwoodsjack

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    In Dec. I received a system XL305 new. I have no complaints, but the RH in MN this time of year is about 35%.
    This might have something to do with it.

    It smoked a bowl of Irish oak every other day for 2 weeks. Filled it full, smoked low and slow.

    Broke in fine, it performs really well.

    ( no stain in this pipe)

    Posted 2 years ago #
  18. bigbee

    bigbee

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    I have broken in about 30 new Petersons so far. The hardest took 50-75 smokes but came along really nice. Their high-end pipes without bowl coating did take less time.
    50 others still to go, I'll keep you posted:-)

    Posted 2 years ago #
  19. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Holy cow! There must be a great story behind this, bigbee. Care to share? Please?

    Posted 2 years ago #
  20. ophiuchus

    ophiuchus

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    I have broken in about 30 new Petersons so far. The hardest took 50-75 smokes but came along really nice. Their high-end pipes without bowl coating did take less time.
    50 others still to go, I'll keep you posted:-)

    So, you're the guy Sam Clemens hired to break in his cobs?

    Posted 2 years ago #
  21. backwoodsjack

    backwoodsjack

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    bigbee,

    If I understand this correctly, you either HAVE 80 Petes, or you have 30 and plan to buy 50 more.
    Either way that it quite a dedication. Please post your experience with the pipes, ie. best and worst smoking, feel in hand etc.

    I am interested in owning more Petersons, but have little experience with them. I am looking at an African block system.

    Thanks

    Joe

    Posted 2 years ago #
  22. bigbee

    bigbee

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    I'll try to post a picture of my collection soon. I'm at 75-80 petes (and plan to buy some more in the coming years)
    I'll also try to write down the story behind them, but all in all my collection is to be called modest compared to those of some collectors you can find on the internet.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  23. alexnorth

    alexnorth

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    Still, it's decent in size...

    Posted 2 years ago #
  24. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    I'm most interested in the 50 or so unsmoked Petes in your collection! Thanks.

    Hardwood- Not all pipes need a "break-in" period, and of those that do, it's all over the lot. From relatively quick to, apparently, never. (though never say never!) And welcome to the forum!

    Posted 2 years ago #
  25. cranseiron

    Cranse Iron

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    Here's a general question I have about pipe break in: I have ten pipes I no longer have in rotation because they are poor performers with the Virginia's I usually smoke. Three were new/unsmoked at purchase and the other seven estate pipes. I have rotated numerous tobaccos in these pipes and the common denominator for them all is they mute the tobacco flavor to a great degree. Most of the estate's have been around awhile and I don't suspect they'll ever get any better. With new pipes that smoke harshly, too bright, rough around the edges, etc. I've found they will settle down and give good smokes given time. But, I never seem to have any improvement with those that are dull, muddy or muted. Has anyone had an insensitive pipe that came back from the dead and became a good smoker?

    Posted 2 years ago #
  26. bigbee

    bigbee

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    In order not to hijack this thread
    Other thread

    This shows the petes in my smoking lounge, about 45. The others are on the ground floor, in my car, scattered around the house, some yearpipes are in their boxes...

    Why 50 unsmoked petes: I enjoy my petes but I'm not a masochist. Every month I try in to break in a pipe and smoke some of my favorites. At an acquisition rate of about 20 pipes/year for several years, you can do the math.

    Why Peterson: as many of you I read a lot of forums and follow some trends concerning mythical smoking woods that everyone must have in his/her collection including the Sav 320ks, Radice Aerobilliard, Morgen briar cigar, Tsuge Metal Blowfish, ... and also a pete 303. From that moment on I was hooked on the 03 shape, p-lip, system pipes, army mounts, sterling silvers... and the rest can be seen in the picture

    Disclaimer: should you be approached by a woman claiming to be my girlfriend: please confirm the fact that every pipe can only be smoked once each month and sufficient spare pipes should be provided in case of burn-out, loss, ...

    Posted 2 years ago #
  27. metalheadycigarguy

    metalheadycigarguy

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    My Peterson 221 St. Patrick's Day 2016 pipe came pre-coated and took about 10-15 bowls to break in. It still gurgles a bit, but I don't mind. A little gurgle here or there doesn't bug me.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  28. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Don't worry, bigbee; we've got your back on the necessity to have X, Y or Z number of pipes.

    Posted 2 years ago #

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