A question on buying Peterson Pipes, Help needed

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stacen

Member
Jan 23, 2011
171
1
Hi all, this is a bit long winded, but I am hoping that those of you with knowledge and experience with Peterson (and pipe collecting in general) will be able to offer me some sage advice after reading the following.
I have 2 months of Holiday coming up around mid March. I am seriously considering treating myself during this time off. (I think it may be my last holiday before really settling down. - To me that means buying a house and maybe even getting married...) I have been working and saving very hard over the last few years and I have a little bit of the savings earmarked just for me, an amount that I can spend without guilt. I hope to spend it on something that will give me some real joy. Something that will last. After some deliberation I have almost convinced myself to combine this hobby we enjoy with my plans for my Holiday. I recognize that I may come across as a charlatan and a dilettante. I hope you can see that I am not. I know I am not very experienced in all this, and that what I am proposing could come across as “over the top” or even foolhardy. I am certainly not a spoiled fellow who doesn’t appreciate the value of money. I simply want to indulge myself after working very hard for a long time. I hope to get some sound advice on what I am considering. :)
What I am considering is taking a trip to Dublin to visit Peterson and, while there, buy some pipes. I would like to get the full set of their meerschaum offerings and a few other of the shapes they offer in the finishes I like most. To that end, does anyone know if Peterson takes custom orders? Specifically I would like the meerschaums with fishtail mouthpieces and I would like about 9 or 10 other shapes in a variety of finishes with various bandings etc... Is it possible to get Peterson to commission the manufacture of selected shapes in high quality material? I am prepared to put a significant deposit down, or pay in advance if required. I don’t want anything crazy, just shapes they already make, finishes they already use, bandings they already use, and shank/mouthpiece connections they already use. (Maybe not exactly as they offer in their catalogue however.) If I put some effort into a detailed list, is there someone from Peterson I could give the list to for a quote? Is this sort of idea possible? If I can't do as i propose, is there a way to get a detailed list of their inventory so that I might see if they have enough of the sorts of pipes I am looking for to justify a pilgrimage?

I would be very grateful of answers anyone could provide to the specific questions above, and also any advice in general on my plans. Even if it is from seasoned collectors telling me to give my head a shake :)

 

cortezattic

Preferred Member
Nov 19, 2009
15,147
7,609
Chicago, IL
This is so unusual that I have difficulty comprehending it. Do you think Peterson uses anything other than high quality material? What do you consider high quality material to be? I can imagine the conversation you would have: "Dear sirs, could you please make some standard shaped pipes for me, but not using your run-of-the-mill substandard shit materials? I'm willing to pay whatever it takes to make a 'good' Peterson."
I'd like to think I misunderstood your post, because it sounds a little disingenuous. I dunno.
IMHO here's the best advice you could get: spend as little as possible on pipes, and as much as possible on tobacco.

Approaches to the hobby differ, but most find the gradual acquisition of a collection more rewarding than purchasing everything at once.

 

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juni

Preferred Member
Mar 9, 2010
1,184
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I think they have "High grade" pipes of most of their pipes. We do have many Peterson experts on the forum who can help you.
Or, why not commission an artisan to make your pipes - then they would be truly unique?
Then again, going to the Peterson factory and see your own pipe being made would be sort of awesome.

 

strongirish

Senior Member
Aug 20, 2010
343
1
Lake Conroe, TX
I have been to to Peterson in Dublin. First off, their factory and their store are in two different locations. They will do commissions but the process is very complicated. You could handpick from their inventory and get a piece in each style that I am sure you would be happy with. I found they had most pipes they make in stock. Also when you are there, ask if they have any old pipes in their inventory, I found some that they had for years made of gorgeous blocks of briar. These were not on display. It is a fun trip and a neat shop and I am sure you would enjoy it. Besides, it's a great town with wonderful Irish food and things to do while there.

 

julesholling

Member
Jan 19, 2011
268
0
Sutton, Surrey
I'm off to Dublin with work at the end of the month and whilst i'm there every couple of months or so and am planning a trip to the Peterson shop myself this time. It's the first time i'll have been staying over in Dublin since i took up the pipe.
As Strongirish said, Dublin is a fantastic city and you'll love the craic there. My only tip would be to try to stay away from the tourist trap that is Temple Bar if you want to experience the real city.

 

stacen

Member
Jan 23, 2011
171
1
Hi guys,
Thanks for the replies. I tried my best not to come off as a total buffoon but that seems to have failed!! I am a forum novice and I still am uncomfortable communicating in this medium, too much gets lost in text!!!

Cortez, Sorry mate!! I wouldn’t want someone thinking of me as disingenuous, I am just ignorant! I don’t have real world access to serious pipe collectors, or even serious pipe smokers for that matter. The limited amount I do know comes from experimentation and the internet. I used the term “highest quality” because of my interpretation of the brochure available for download from the Peterson website. In their brochure they describe certain of their pipes as being of the “Highest grade” of briar, others are described as being of less choice material. All I wanted was to find out if anyone knew if they would make the shapes listed as made in the less than super high grade stuff in a higher grade briar instead. I get it now that all of their stuff is good quality. Imagine if you didn’t know what you know and you were reading the brochure, I just made a newbie mistake in understanding! Sorry if I came across like a jerk! Not my intention!!!

I guess I should have just asked if anyone knew if they take custom orders, if there was any one here with a contact at Peterson I could call… So I could check for fishtail mouthpiece meerschaums, or an accessible inventory of their in stock pipes .

At any rate, I think I am just going to screw it and do it! I’ll call ahead about the meerschaums, and just take the trip over there, and even if I don’t come away with one pipe it will be some fun and a good story,

Thanks again for the feedback, and I’ll try to post more clearly in the future!

 

puffintuff

Senior Member
Dec 14, 2010
437
0
I'm gonna have to agree with strongirish on the "wonderful Irish food".

Everything tastes better after a few Guinness Stouts.

 

lordnoble

Preferred Member
Jul 13, 2010
2,677
3
I don't know what's wrong with taking all the ingredients for an recipe, throw them into a large stock pot and boil the crap out of them. Sounds like fine cuisine to me!!! :lol:
-Jason

 

mjtannen

Senior Member
Jan 3, 2011
411
1
@Stacen: Why don't you contact The Peterson Pipe Co directly. Tell them your travel plans, date of request for a plant visit and ask your questions to the source. I'm sure for a price, anything is possible. You realize, of course, on a bulk pipe order there will be a nifty duty fee coming back home through customs.

 

thesandpiper

Member
Oct 6, 2010
118
0
Stacen you are in a very envious position with what you propose,most of us old farts on here are just jeleous.

I would suggest that you contact Peterson direct link here,with your shopping list.
sales@peterson.ie
Kapp & Peterson Limited

T/A Peterson of Dublin

Peterson House

Sallynoggin

Co. Dublin

Ireland
Tel: +353-1-2851011

Fax: +353-1-2856593
Good luck.

 

chuckw

Preferred Member
Oct 7, 2009
679
9
I don't know how I missed this thread. I asked Angela Fortune just last week if they did commisions and she said definatly no.

You can pick fishtail over P-lip in most Peterson shapes. As for banding, I don't think they will put a silver band on a System Standard or some of the entry level pipes and gold bands are reserved for the very highest series.
I would follow Sandpipers advice and ask them via e-mail or fax them your order. If you let them know when you'll be there a couple of weeks ahead of time, Tony Whelan will arrange a tour of the factory for you.

 

stacen

Member
Jan 23, 2011
171
1
Hey Cheers again for the replies fellows, greatly appreciated. The information offered is exactly what I was looking for, a little wisdom from a variety of people who approach the same pursuit from a variety of perspectives. I got myself worked into a frenzy drooling over all the pictures of the beautiful pipes from Peterson, (not sure why, but I find the designs they make to be the most appealing of those that I have been exposed to.) Some level headed input is a nice “check” on my rashness.

I have however made up my mind to go. Thanks for the information Sandpiper. I sent an email to Peterson inquiring about the meerschaums. Thanks also to chuck and strong irish who mentioned the factory tour, I will make sure I make arrangements in advance. I am not much of a photographer, but I will try to get pics to post.

I think manytrees (and Cortez’s) advice is very sound. Now that I have had some time to think a little more after my excited original post, it makes sense to proceed slowly with acquiring pipes that really reach out to me rather than going nuts with a fantasy shopping list over the internet.

One thing is for certain, it would be nice to have the luxury of real world proximity to other pipe enthusiasts. The wisdom and experience that you guys use to enjoy the hobby would sink in naturally, communication would be clearer and simpler… this online stuff really is fun and great, I am enjoying it quite a bit, but it would be great to be settled in one place with a hangout where people enjoyed pipes!!! (ironic as that may be considering that one of the biggest “pipe pleasures” in my limited experience is sitting with my thoughts while diligently working through a bowl!!)

My girlfriend has strong ties in Chicago, (she works with me and has the same vacation schedule) and we are going there to visit with her friends. I am going to check out the big tobacco shop there, and just going to soak up some of the experience. Maybe I’ll see one of you guys there!!
Cheers Stacen

 
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