How many to start???

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seagullplayer

Senior Member
Jan 30, 2014
444
0
Indiana
I have not smoked a pipe in years, I would guess about 20.

Never did much to start with, but I have a notion to give it a go.
Found a local tobacco shop that claims 20+ tobaccos in bulk that I could

sample. My question is how many should I start with? The lady said come in

and smell a few...
I am thinking a sample of three?
Might also pick-up a pouch of over the counter stuff just to learn the pipe again,

any very available recommendations there?
Great site BTW!

 

tobyducote

Preferred Member
Jun 10, 2012
1,200
1
Don't try more than 1 sample bowl at a time. Since your just getting started, it may be too much for your tongue, also your pipe will need a rest after each smoke. They should allow you to sample bowls of their house blends for free...I would ask them if they have 1Q to begin with...

 

swampmouth

Member
Oct 4, 2013
125
0
If I had a local I would start with one. That way if it didn't hit you right the first time, you'd give it some more time to reflect. Jumping right into a new blend can trigger an avalanche.

 

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buster

Preferred Member
Sep 1, 2011
1,305
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Go check out the bulk blends they have to offer. Ask if they carry Lanes 1Q or Hazelnut. They are mild aromatics. Sniff the blends she has to offer and see what smells good to you? I say give two or three a shot. Just don't smoke all three in one day. Take your time and see if one grows on you.

 

rmbittner

Preferred Member
Dec 12, 2012
2,098
3
seagull:
Don't go overboard with the samples. You'll need at least three bowls of a blend to start to get at its "true" flavor; it typically takes that many bowls to burn away the remnants of a previous blend. (And, depending on the blend, it can take many more.) Since you'll get around 10 bowls from a one-ounce sample, you'll be fine with that. But unless you're planning to go from 0 to 60 here, you could find yourself with a lot of samples that are drying out before you get around to trying them.
I'd start by asking the shop what their most popular aromatic and most popular non-aromatic blends are. Buy one-ounce samples of each of those. Chances are, these will be bulk blends that we all know (by a variety of names) and that will also be readily available elsewhere. See if you favor the aro over the non-aro, or vice-versa. Then when you head back to the store, you can pick up additional samples from that category. Then, once you get a handle on the styles you enjoy, you might want to consider trying some tinned blends in those styles, just for comparison's sake.
Bob

 

seagullplayer

Senior Member
Jan 30, 2014
444
0
Indiana
Thanks for the reply's everyone!
I had to go out at work and pick up some parts, I picked up some Captain Black,

I recall it from years ago.
I plan to hit the tobacco shop after work today, it is a little out of the way

for me.
I agree that I don't want to go overboard! I have a three day weekend, and have

some garage projects planned, so I should get a chance get my feet wet.
Thanks again for the interest. I am enjoying reading the forum

 

numbersix

Preferred Member
Jul 27, 2012
5,451
6
Welcome to the forum seagull!
When I first started I had the proprietor help me choose an inexpensive "basket" pipe (which remains a decent little smoker) and he also directed me to a sampler of bulks at a slightly reduced rate.
It was an excellent way to get started. I think it helps to try as many different types of tobacco as possible. Next is to visit this forum and see what others are smoking and enjoying and give those a try.
So far I've tried nearly 70 different blends in my relatively short time smoking a pipe (it took that many to discover my current 4-5 favorites, the rest were all just 'okay' in my book). So be patient and enjoy the ride!

 

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
29,603
9,390
Take it slow. There are so many brands and blends, it staggers the mind. Your over-the-counter pouch

and one or two of the smallest quantity bulk from the pipe shop should do it. Some places will sell you

an ounce, which is good, or some have a 2 ounce minimum. The minimum is what you want. Give it a few

months. If you get a range on what you like, 4noggins, one of our sponsors, has one-ounce sampler packs

in various categories that might serve your purpose. But don't over-buy tobaccos until you get your bearings.

A can of over-the-counter, like Carter Hall, with other tobaccos, can last for over a year, if you aren't smoking

more than a bowl or two a day.

 

peter70

Member
May 24, 2013
175
0
I would get a Latakia blend, a Virginia and an Aromatic. That way you get an impression, in what direction to sample more blends.

 

mattia76

Member
Dec 24, 2010
256
10
Peter70 has it right. Try their best blend of all 3 basic types of tobacco. IF it's the basic Lane assortment of blends, good luck. You may need to reach out to some members here to help.

 

dmcmtk

Preferred Member
Aug 23, 2013
3,241
587
As others have said, if their bulk blends are Lane's, ask about 1-Q, RPL-6, and HGL. Three good places to start, and better than the pre-packaged stuff. Captain Black is made by Lane.

 

anglesey

Senior Member
Jan 15, 2014
383
1
I wouldn't bother with samples either to be honest. Read up about it, think which kind of things you might like. I'd just pick what you like the sound of. I heard once that if you try something three times, you'll like it. That was my logic and it worked.

 

sfsteves

Preferred Member
Aug 3, 2013
1,282
0
SF Bay Area
Talk to the person in that B&M about what your reactions are to the samples offered ... if it's a knowledgeable person, they're going to be able to guide you well ... the advise you'll get here is also good, but so widely varied that it could well be confusing ...
That said, welcome aboard

 

sothron

Preferred Member
Sep 20, 2011
3,733
0
I would be wary of buying samples based on smell. Many commonly available aromatics are very poor smokers, despite their aroma. They often smoke wet and hot, with little flavor.
Instead, I would search around the forums here. There are a number of threads regarding recommendations for new pipe smokers. As suggested above, I would recommend trying 1-2 blends of each broad category: aromatic, English, VaPer (Virginia/Perique), Virginia, Burley.

 

seagullplayer

Senior Member
Jan 30, 2014
444
0
Indiana
Thanks for the advise.
I was able to stop by the shop on the way home, found the lady there very friendly and helpful.

She showed me their most popular blend, and several others. I found the prices very reasonable!
I ended up with two one ounce samples, one was their most popular seller, something called "Hoosier" and the other a cherry blend. I wish I had asked for a list of what they have on hand, maybe next time.
I gave the Hoosier a go when I got home, and found it very agreeable.
This could be the start of something!

 
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