Thanks! I'm still learning and tweaking various things. But, I'm having to think less about things as well which is leading to much more enjoyment!Sounds like you're doing just fine. It'll take a little time to really get a feel for things, but it sounds like you're picking it up quick.
Congratulations. Have fun exploring the wealth of flavor.
It almost seems like its quite difficult to dry tobacco too much. Although, I know there is a point a which it is clearly wayyy too dry. I have heard some say that drying out the tobacco causes it to lose flavor / casing. I haven't investigated that claim very much, but it would be interesting to get peoples takes on things.You have a lot of good advice already. I would suggest experimenting with drying the tobacco even MORE….. perhaps as long as a day…. try a bowlful of that. I suspect it may help with the other advice about sipping. I think the dryer leaf will not be as “hot” along with sipping more.
I was experimenting with a sort of codgers scoop method, but have gone back to gravity feed as I find it more consistent. I did get some great bowls with the codgers scoop method, but I think I need more practice with it and that needs to come later once I have other parts of pipe smoking down.I agree with loading tobacco with gravity feed. Then apply gentle pressure on top tobacco layer to keep the tobacco from falling out of the bowl. Sip and I mean sip like sipping a chocolate soda and don't forget to tamp often, only with the weight of the tamp. Tamp often but don't crush the tobacco. Find a tamp with breather holes in the tamp if you have not already done so. This allows inhaling while tamping. Tamping in my opinion is not done enough. Tamping is best done with a concave shape. The concave shape allows one to collect the tobacco into the center of the bowel. I have learned this from the Forum who has given me great advice. Putting it all together took time. You will in general relight less when some of these ideas become natural. And don't sweat the relights.
Yea, I bought all ribbon cut. The ODF was the only non-ribbon cut and I've found I definitely have to treat that ready rub much differently. It seems to need to dry out more and it also seems to work much better when I rub it out pretty good. I'm also getting some bowls with very few relights and some with more. I'm worrying less and less about that now that I've avoided excessive relights on occassion.ODF was a little tricky for me until I realized I needed to let it dry for 20 minutes or so after I Rubbed it out really well. I'm no expert pipe smoker, but sometimes I smoke a bowl with zero relights and other times I have a million. Doesn't bother me as much as I thought it would. Any time smoking a pipe is time well spent.
I think I like latakia! I haven't tried any perique blends yet, but have a vaper blend now to try in the not too distant future. That's very interesting that some flavors really come out with DGT! Thanks for the tip!!Many English and Scottish blends will stay lit for nearly the entire bowl if sipped easily. Latakia is the tobacco that gives these the smoky taste and aroma. Latakia is one tobacco that many either like or dislike - not many in the middle. Personally, I prefer Latakia blends.
Also, don't get excited about letting the pipe go out and come back to re-light. It's called DGT.. Delayed Gratification Technique. Pipes are unlike cigars in that you can let many blends extinguish and then re-light for even more unique tastes!
As others have said, sip rather than huff! Drawing too hard will surely give you tongue burn.
Some Virginias and quite a few highly cased flavored Aromatics will do the same.
I'm sure that in hindsight, I will laugh at my naive self. I guess that's a good thing though as that means I've improved! I'm still experimenting with pack and drying, but starting to get things dialed in much better. Very cool you had a BIL to help you out. I don't know any pipe smokers. So, I'm very grateful to be able to be a part of this community!Looking back on my first year or so of being God-awful at smoking a pipe, I counseled my brother-in-law (and good friend) to first figure out what was "too loose" a pack and "too dry" tobacco when I got him a pipe, a few ounces and some accessories for Christmas last year.
I reckon I went about it backwards when trying to figure out what was loose enough and dry enough, and could have saved some time and avoided some bad smokes if I'd tackled it the other way around.
I'm pretty bad at it now so I'm moving in the right direction
I think that all makes perfect sense! Preparation is often the most important part of any task. That's a great tip on being able to blow gently on the top of the bowl and see a nice stream of smoke flow from the button. Also, don't mind the civil war anecdote! Hope you're enjoying the read!!I've found the pack is of critical importance. I've been smoking a pipe for so many years it's just natural and I couldn't even explain it. You'll get to know what you like. For me, if it's packed too tight when I draw, before the light I'll run a cleaner through, sometimes that will fix it. If it's still too tight, I empty it and start over. Too tight a draw will ruin the smoke without a doubt. I notice when I gently blow on the top of my bowl a nice stream of smoke will flow from the button. The only exception is Semois, I pack that one like a Yankee with a ram rod but still the draw is fine.
Pardon the Civil war anecdote, I'm reading Shelby Foote now...
I was actually looking at that one! I was a little worried about it being "short" at 6 inches and was also a little worried about the magnetic buttons. I'm glad yours is treating you well!! Smokingpipes seems to have a peterson 1 pipe combo pouch that isn't too much more expensive. It's a little "longer" at 7 inches and has button snaps instead of magnets, which I like. I'm on the fence about the large availability of pouches and styles. But, I'll have to make up my mind sooner or later!