The best new Peterson may be an old Peterson. I was able to get an awesome old Peterson Meerschaum for about $35 on the bay! For what you could spend on a new one, you could get a top line old one. Pre-Republic, even.
Ive heard bad things about petersons ebony finish... going dull after just a few smokes and smoking hot because the briar doesnt breathe, im not trying to be a debbie downer i just wanted you to be aware. Ive always been a fan of the killarney ebony series but its not a good idea to get a lower end peterson anymore
I would not buy a new Peterson, there are way too many issues with the company.
Here are a few pipes that I think will be very good smokers.
If you are having a hard time deciding, I wouldn't buy a pipe at all right now. Buying something only because I have enough money is usually a way to get something I regret later.
I would wait and keep looking. When you find something you really want, you will know.
Thanks guys, I agree about the Upshall, best bang for the buck on the list. I did not know how much Sean is willing to spend so I threw in a couple of more expensive ones. He also mentioned he likes a poker and I thought the Ashton would be a good choice if he is in that price range. Funny thing about the Upshall, Mike had it on ebay a while ago and this was right before I changed course and started collection American artisans, he had make an offer on it and I did. Of course I tried low balling and did not get it, but I liked that pipe and if I had not changed course I would have owned that one. I think it will be a excellent smoking pipe and really it is an artisan pipe. From all accounts I have read, Barry Jones does all his own work.
Sean, that Upshall will out smoke any Peterson that is new, trust us. Mike cleans his pipes so they are pristine. I have bought 4 pipes from him so far and he is a pleasure to do business with.
That upshall is actually my favorite of any suggestion thus far. Definitely in my price range. That Ashton is nice and all but I don't much care for the look of it. My main all day smokes are Old Dublin and some various Balkans. I'd like to get more into the VA side of things, but those tests are reserved for some cobs before I dedicate a pipe to them.