The Humidity Defeated Me Tonight

elessar

Member
Apr 24, 2019
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88
Tonight, as it is with most nights, I went out into my screened porch and settled in for an evening smoke with a good book. I grabbed both a pipe I hadn't smoked in a while, my Drew Estate Tsuge, and a tobacco that has been in the back of the drawer, Firestorm. I have been smoking heavy Latakia stuff for some time and wanted to change it up. I went through my usual packing and lighting ritual with one notable exception. The tobacco would not stay lit. At all.. No, really... I tried and tried but no matter the combination of flame, tamping, or puffing my pipe would not stay lit at all. Maybe 15 or 20 seconds of smoke at a time. Any more heat and I think I would have surely damaged my pipe. I even unloaded the pipe and tried another blend that has been sitting forever and is quite dry. It was a marginally better result, but still no joy. Our dew point is 67 with the temp falling to about the same and I think the humidity wins this round...
Anybody else have this happen to them? I found it kind of funny actually.

 

anthonyrosenthal74

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Jan 8, 2013
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It has been quite humid here in North Texas, as well. Humidity can really dampen (pardon the pun) a quality smoke. What I find works best in such situations is a dry tobacco in a pipe with a well open draw. Often a filter pipe without a filter or insert does the trick in such situations. Pack it a little loose (easily adjusted with a light tamp if it's too loose), put plenty of dry kindling (the little dusty stuff you often find in the very bottom of the tin) on top, and get a good charring light.

 

didimauw

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Staff member
Jul 28, 2013
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The humidity has been killing my vibes lately too. Takes longer for tobacco to dry, and just doesn't go right during the smoke. I actually had to microwave some tobacco this morning for the first time ever. I was too impatient to keep letting it dry naturally. Normally after 20 minutes it's good, but today was taking longer than an hour.

 

shanez

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Jul 10, 2018
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Las Vegas
I don't know what you guys are talking about. It 91 degrees with 11% humidity... :mrgreen:

 

elessar

Member
Apr 24, 2019
204
88
I knew the Firestorm was not as dry as I like but I was hoping the Tsuge would save me from gurgle. But I did not think I would have such a tough time lighting. I definitely need to pay more attention to dry time with respect to humidity. That's a good tip about putting some kind of kindling on the top, I will give that a try. And if that fails, I will try the microwave :)

 

mso489

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Feb 21, 2013
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We have notorious humidity in Piedmont N.C., but not yet so much. Humid or not, I find dry tobacco burns better, more evenly with better flavor, so I pack pipes hours before I light up, or overnight, and/or dry tobacco in a pottery bowl, a few pipe bowls at a time. Pouches that get hidden and then found, and are pretty dry, often smoke well indeed. It feels good to pack a somewhat moist bowl of blend, if it goes ahead an burns well anyway, but dry leaf is usually more dependable all around.

 

jpmcwjr

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May 12, 2015
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Monterey Peninsula
Ambient humidity here on the Monterey Peninsula is mid 60's. Aside from Anthony, no idea where these high number come from.
Dry time can be a bitch in those places mentioned above- 'cause it doesn't dry at all, but picks up moisture, unless the a/c is on pretty good.

 

krizzose

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Feb 13, 2013
1,157
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Michigan
This is another reason flakes are handy. You can put them right next to a register (or your vehicle’s front defroster) with the A/C kicking to dry them out. Ribbon cut is not a candidate for that treatment for obvious reasons

 

mso489

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Feb 21, 2013
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krizzose, it occurs to me that ribbon could be slung in a cheesecloth bag (homemade) in front of the register or vehicles front defroster with the same effect only quicker, maybe. Just a passing inspiration. Would it work?

 

pipebaum81

Preferred Member
Nov 23, 2014
625
2
Really great suggestions. Here in the Florida Panhandle its a problem a lot of the year too. Leaving tobacco out on my tray for the day in my heavily air conditioned house does quite well. The first quarter of the pipe typically seems really smooth and cold and I think its at least impart due to the lower levels of tobacco still being chilled from the air conditioned house.
j/B

 

elessar

Member
Apr 24, 2019
204
88
I think it's finally drying out a bit around here. Going to put something out to dry overnight. Hopefully that does the trick.
3rdguy, low 80's dew point. Yikes! You could swim in that.

 

ophiuchus

Preferred Member
Mar 25, 2016
1,237
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What I find works best in such situations is a dry tobacco in a pipe with a well open draw. Often a filter pipe without a filter or insert does the trick in such situations.
Bingo! This actually made a difference on those hot, swampy Chicago summer evenings.

 

npod

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Jun 11, 2017
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Big problem in the south were I live.
I dry the tobacco very well and also try and avoid smoking flakes when the humidity is up.

 

redglow

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Jan 7, 2019
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Michigan
66 degrees and 52% humidity tonight here in Michigan. Breezy. Winds out of the NE at 8mph
Pure Michigan

 

krizzose

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Feb 13, 2013
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290
Michigan
MSO: that sounds like a great idea. Or one of the those metal tea balls.
On a camping trip a few years ago I left some Mac Baren Vanilla Cream Flake on my truck’s defroster a little too long. It was crispy dry. It was so humid that 15 minutes on a paper plate soaking up the ambient mid summer Michigan humidity solved the problem and produced a great bowl

 

krizzose

Preferred Member
Feb 13, 2013
1,157
290
Michigan
@redglow: I love all the seasons, winter included, but today was a perfect Michigan spring day for sure, and a Friday to boot