Purchasing A Meerschaum

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Magpiety

Senior Member
Dec 7, 2019
471
1,514
Kansas City
Hello all,

I'm interested in trying out a Meerschaum pipe. I've never branched out from briars and cobs, and it sounds like the smoking qualities are notably different.

I see that there are choices from AKB on smoking pipes.com for around $100, and the AKB bio on the SP website states that they're all carved from genuine block. Is there any reason I shouldn't start out with one of these? If I like it I'll pick up a high quality one after a couple of months, but I'm not really worried about "wasting" money on a cheap one and then getting a nice one later.
 

timt

Preferred Member
Jul 19, 2018
1,434
3,078
Minnesota
I’m no expert by any means but I have 2 meerschaum pipes. The first one I bought was a no-name with a screw in tenon. I’m smoking it at this moment. The other one is a IMP which has a push-in tenon.

The price difference between the two was about $100 and I guess I’d say it was worth it to me. The cheaper one just requires a little more attention to detail (dry tobacco and slow cadence) because of the more restrictive airflow.
 
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Jwebb90

Preferred Member
Feb 17, 2020
534
3,139
Georgia
If you go the AKB route, I’d suggest one carved by Tekin. I got one a couple of months ago and am very happy with it. The airflow is great and it does not have the screw in tenon. This was a gift from my wife and I think she paid around $170. I have smoked it almost every day since it arrived in early September 👍🏻image.jpg
 

ray47

Preferred Member
Jul 10, 2015
1,800
2,283
Dalzell, South Carolina
When I considered buying my first Meerschaum I was going to get a cheaper one, but after much research I decided to save up the money for a good one. I decided on a Altinok Santa Claus meer and I'm glad I waited. I liked it so much that 2 yrs later I bought a Altinok Lee Van Cleef meer. I'm set now and enjoy each meer everyday. Their well constructed and I've had no problems out of either pipe. Altinok was easy to deal with and I got my pipes within 6 days of ordering. Here are the two I purchased:vc1053a-1200x675.jpgfg1045b-1200x675.jpg
 

cigrmaster

Preferred Member
May 26, 2012
15,988
18,827
United States
I finally decided to buy a quality Meer and went with IMP. It was a nice smooth group 5 Apple, no faces or any decorations, I like plain. IMP brags about their Delrin system for breaking the pipe down instead of using that stupid screw on system. IMP does this very well. The stem on the pipe sucks compared to my artisan made pipes. The pipe smokes hot and since you cannot build up a nice cake, it will always burn hot. I will sell this piece of crap one day and will never buy another meer as long as I live. I can adjust my cadence to smoke thin walled pipes with ease, I know it is not my smoking style that makes the pipe burn hot, it is simply a hot smoker and no matter how many times I try to get it to smoke cool, this bitch ain't having any of it.

To me Meers are no where near as good as a quality briar pipe that is broken in and that has a proper cake. I spent close to 250.00 for this pipe so it wasn't like I blew 500.00. I am sure I can off it for a duece one day.
 

F4RM3R

Member
Nov 28, 2019
291
909
34
Canada
+1 for Altinay. I have a lattice meerschaum billiard. I bought for crazy cheap(less than 20$) on ebay cause it needed a little repair to some minor cracks in the tenon and a new stem. The stem is a push style 9mm so it was easy to replace.

It smokes very well, but to my Preference I drilled out the airway a little and it smokes like a dream now. A very well made pipe with nice carving detail. Mine has the metal cover around the rim.

I wouldn't have bought one new though, but I wouldn't buy any pipes new aside from cobs or clays.
 

maduromadness

Junior Member
Jan 3, 2014
86
75
I bought a cheaper meer as the first one just to taste the difference. Was a car smoker of .7 oz that was great for clenching. I second cigrmaster on the stems. I mean for the price your basically paying for a carved meer block of X size. Meers to me smoke cleaner, more precise. Not always a good thing but sometimes is a great thing. Briar adds dimension and warmth.
My pipe was stolen out of my car 😒 and I've been wanting to replace it with a quality briar. My 2 cents get what you like, just like you would a briar. Your bound to have some tobacco that smokes better in a meer, and you'll be happy with your new pipe. Also cigrmaster doesn't smoke lats so bear that in mind.
 

F4RM3R

Member
Nov 28, 2019
291
909
34
Canada
I finally decided to buy a quality Meer and went with IMP. It was a nice smooth group 5 Apple, no faces or any decorations, I like plain. IMP brags about their Delrin system for breaking the pipe down instead of using that stupid screw on system. IMP does this very well. The stem on the pipe sucks compared to my artisan made pipes. The pipe smokes hot and since you cannot build up a nice cake, it will always burn hot. I will sell this piece of crap one day and will never buy another meer as long as I live. I can adjust my cadence to smoke thin walled pipes with ease, I know it is not my smoking style that makes the pipe burn hot, it is simply a hot smoker and no matter how many times I try to get it to smoke cool, this bitch ain't having any of it.

To me Meers are no where near as good as a quality briar pipe that is broken in and that has a proper cake. I spent close to 250.00 for this pipe so it wasn't like I blew 500.00. I am sure I can off it for a duece one day.
My Altinay always smoked hot until it drilled out the airway, and the difference was night and day. It always smokes cool now with ease. But if I had paid that much I would probably have sold it too instead of potentially ruining the pipe and resale value by drilling.
 

LOREN

Member
Oct 21, 2019
225
382
62
Illinois -> Florida
I have some meers that I bought a long time ago, they smoke fine for me, nothing extra special though. To me, prices seem like they have shot up, even factoring in for the cost of inflation and such. I agree with the stems not being any good. I feel like that's where manufactures (carvers) seems to really cheap-out (is that a word?)
 

cigrmaster

Preferred Member
May 26, 2012
15,988
18,827
United States
My Altinay always smoked hot until it drilled out the airway, and the difference was night and day. It always smokes cool now with ease. But if I had paid that much I would probably have sold it too instead of potentially ruining the pipe and resale value by drilling.
I don't even own a drill. My tool box consists of a hammer, screwdriver and a lock nut wrench. I hire people when something breaks as I am useless with tools. I could send the meer out to a pro, might cost 35-50 bucks which might or might not solve the issue. It could be this block of meer is just shit and will stay that way. Thanks for the idea it does have me thinking.
 

brian64

Preferred Member
Jan 31, 2011
6,603
3,946
The single biggest issue with meers in my experience is the drilling. It's hit and miss ordering online. I've had to drill a couple of them, including an AKB and an IMP.

I would recommend Baki as top of the line, but you would have to take your chances trying to order from Aliexpress. Good luck with that. I tried inquiring with them about several that showed available on the site and none of the ones I wanted were actually available. I don't know what you would get if you just ordered without asking first.

Altinay looks really good in their pics and has a nice website, but I tried ordering from them and it requires a card with "3D security"...I don't even know what that is. And there's no paypal option.
 

Magpiety

Senior Member
Dec 7, 2019
471
1,514
Kansas City
These comments are all very helpful! Thank you to all. I'm going to look in the $150-$200 range for a slightly better model. I know that's not much for a nice meer, but it sounds like it will be good enough to where I can decide if I should purchase a more expensive model or not.
 

F4RM3R

Member
Nov 28, 2019
291
909
34
Canada
I don't even own a drill. My tool box consists of a hammer, screwdriver and a lock nut wrench. I hire people when something breaks as I am useless with tools. I could send the meer out to a pro, might cost 35-50 bucks which might or might not solve the issue. It could be this block of meer is just shit and will stay that way. Thanks for the idea it does have me thinking.
Well I actually just took a drill bit and gently turned it with some pliers, the meer is soft and is quite easy to do that way. But seeing as you don't own pliers ...:p
 

chasingembers

Preferred Member
Nov 12, 2014
23,881
23,322
After throwing out an IMP and AKB a couple of years ago, I decided back in June to give meerschaum another go.

I bought a Kenan skull to smoke.

IMG_4802__51590.1574218451.jpeg-2.jpg
20200927_053837.jpg

An Emin Brothers beret and an AKB claw just to look at.

004-653-4542.3477.jpg
002-574-3603.8594-1.jpg

I really don't find much difference between briar and meerschaum, but the skull is fun to clench and smoke while driving if for nothing else, the looks on other driver's faces.
 

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