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Tonight's Smoke...And a Lesson Learned by a Newbie

(20 posts)
  1. deckpiper

    deckpiper

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    I don't smoke every day. I use it as a time out from the hustle and bustle of life (and as a reward for sticking to my new exercise regime).

    Tonight, a mid-weekday night, I had the house to mayself. I went on my deck, overlooking the forest behind my house...Vauen Ascot 172...Lane BCA (the first tobacco I bought since taking up pipe smoking recently)...some good Chianti I opened last night for spaghetti dinner (I was surprised: the chianti went better with this smoke tonight than it did with my spaghetti last night). Finish off with just a splash of Camus VSOP cognac.

    Lesson: Tamping. I had no idea it would make such a difference. I never had a tool, but I finally got one a few weeks ago, and it helps so much smoking an entire bowl. Duh. Everyone said to get one; they were right.

    Nice relaxing night.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. dottiewarden

    dottiewarden

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    A lot of us use our finger, however, a proper tamper can be very useful in keeping the burn even. Congrats on your wonderful evening smoke.

    Dot
    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. mikethompson

    mikethompson

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    The Czech tool is a wonderful thing

    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. jacks6

    jacks6

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    Always have one on ya!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. johnbarleycorn

    johnbarleycorn

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    Life without a tool would be pretty bleak. Don’t ya think?

    And little Sir John and the nut brown bowl proved the strongest man at last
    Posted 1 year ago #
  6. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

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    I usually carry a pipe nail in my pocket, but the Czech tool is so necessary I always keep several around. Just don't usually carry one since they tend to catch on pocketknives, nail clippers, *lighters*.... Since in the car I can usually dig in my pocket I keep both a nail & a thimble in the console. Too useful to be without!

    Head Black Frigate keelhauler, boss powder monkey, & troublemaker 1st class.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. npod

    npod

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    @bnichols. I like the idea of a thimble. That would be great for smoking while walking the dogs, such a pain to keep stopping to pull out the tamper. Cheers.

    Neal
    Posted 1 year ago #
  8. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

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    Plus, when you know your car by feel, you don;'t have to take your eyes off the road (other than to flick the lighter, of course).

    Posted 1 year ago #
  9. saltedplug

    saltedplug

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    Use your fingers to tamp.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  10. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    Tampers: Golf tees, tree branches cut up in 2-3" lengths, nails with largeish heads, someone else's finger. (I use finger for tamping when it's gone out, but not on a hot ember). Czech tools, yes, but a real pipe tool can ream to a small extent.

    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 1 year ago #
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    oldtoby

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    Thimbles are very useful, along with a cheap pipe nail. Never cared for the Czech tools myself.

    Don't use your friggin' finger, unless there's no alternative. Makes a terrible mess, having to clean the ashes off your pinky. I've broken branches off trees or picked up twigs to tamp when I've been caught without.

    Of course, ifin' you're working in the yard or garden, it won't matter, as one can simply rub your finger onto your pant leg. (Yeah, I've been guilty of that)

    In other words, don't use your finger. 'Tis totally uncivilized.

    Ok, Salty. Don't start no shyte, won't be none.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

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    If I'm doing the first load, I'll use finger if need be. Post-charring light, no way in Perdition, José. Got more respect for my digits than that.....

    Posted 1 year ago #
  13. mso489

    mso489

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    Everyone has their favorite pipe tool, from bejeweled to a finger. I have several Czech tools, but I have become devoted to pipe nails for their shear simplicity, and since they cost a buck or less apiece, I find, superstitiously, I never lose them. The scoop doubles as a pick and the tamper is excellent. Yes, tamping is an art. You need a tamper to settle the first light or two in place, and once or twice more before the bowl is done. When you get it right, you do not put out the ember, just settle it in place.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  14. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

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    It's funny, though, mso -- years ago I always followed (*&* preached) the gospel of the charring light Without
    Exception, yet recently I find that on some of my bowls (the larger & best drilled ones, usually, though not always), I can do a good initial load, fire it up, & smoke all the way down without ever recompressing. Another of God's little jokes, on me, I guess. Go figure.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  15. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    It's funny, though, mso -- years ago I always followed (*&* preached) the gospel of the charring light Without
    Exception

    When you get to be good at pipesmoking, all of that BS that we tell newbies about packing, and charring light just fall to the wayside. Now, I just scoop some in, fire it up without all of the drama and fanfare. Heck, I sometimes find myself smoking without a single memory of having packed or lit the pipe. It's just a mindless mechanical action. The important part is the smoking... and the nicotine.

    Michael
    Posted 1 year ago #
  16. dottiewarden

    dottiewarden

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    When you get to be good at pipesmoking, all of that BS that we tell newbies about packing, and charring light just fall to the wayside. Now, I just scoop some in, fire it up without all of the drama and fanfare.

    Codger scoop is the method I now typically use, however, there's a lot more going on than meets the eye. I have to attribute much of the pipe smoking skills I've acquired over the years to the thousands of posts I've read here on these threads. Thanks to all, including Cosmicfolklore, for the subtle details that contribute to an enhanced pipe smoking experience.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  17. pianopuffer

    pianopuffer

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    I take it the codger scoop is simply that? Scoop with the pipe into the tobacco and pat it down?

    Wondering how this method works for other cuts that aren’t ribbon like most OTC blends...

    Posted 1 year ago #
  18. deckpiper

    deckpiper

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    Regarding the Czech tool: I duplicated my smoke form the first post tonight. I must have packed in the tobacco too tightly? I had to use the poker for the first time. Seemed to be something blocking the air flow, as if a piece of tobacco was right in the hole to the stem. I first poked a hole through, and then had to poke right near the stem, and move the tobacco back from the stem hole. (Probably wrong terminology?) Anyway, it worked out. Good tool.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  19. dottiewarden

    dottiewarden

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    I take it the codger scoop is simply that?

    Rubbed out flake can get pretty fluffy and pack similarly to ready rub. Cube cut gravity feeds quite well. The main point here though is as you get more mileage behind you on the pipe, it all gets done on auto-pilot: better smokes, more often!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  20. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    I take it the codger scoop is simply that? Scoop with the pipe into the tobacco and pat it down?

    Yes, that's it!


    Wondering how this method works for other cuts that aren’t ribbon like most OTC blends...

    Just fine, as long as the tobacco is dry enough. (flakes, coins and plugs often take much longer to dry.)

    Posted 1 year ago #

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