Discussion in 'Need Pipe Smoking Advice? Ask an Old Fart!' started by user2453, Feb 17, 2012.
Are there any guidelines to follow? I am using a zippo pipe lighter.
I am not sure of what you are asking. If you would like a couple of pointers to start off with or if you are experiencing a problem. If you are a noob and asking a question regarding packing your pipe. I do not subscribe to the Frank method for noobs. I am a proponent of gravity packing your pipe and then a light tamping after a charring light until you get a good feel for how tight your bowl should be packed. It should be spring like after the tamp and you might even only have a 1/2 to 3/4 of a bowl at that point. I also recommend that you do not try to overlight it to start. just get it smoking or you run the risk of burning the inside of the bowl. The most important thing is to smoke slllooow. The slower you puff the more flavor you will taste. That goes against everything you feel. It is just human nature to puff way too fast to get more flavor when the reality is that you get more taste from a slower cadence.
I hope this helped,
Great post Paul!
Thanks Lestrade. I want to help anyone just getting into our hobbie but I was not sure of what he is asking. Hopefully he gets going in a good direction and enjoys smoking his pipe.
Thank you. I have been smoking a few months now and just was wondering if you are supposed to tamp the bowl while imploring the Frank Method of packing, and how often you ash when you do. Also Frank used a butane torch and all I have is a flame lighter (zippo pipe lighter). I finished an entire bowl with a couple relights and a few tampings but the smoke seemed really soft. The pipe was cool all the way to the bottom though. I have been using the 3 step, two step method using gravity filling mostly.
I noted that in the Frank method youtube video he says not to tamp after the time consuming butane light as you would with a 3 step packed bowl. I was just wondering if anyone has their own set of guidelines using this method using a flame lighter instead and needing an occasional tamp during the smoke. Thank you for the answer.
You are very welcome. I used a Zippo for years and still do sometimes. I assume you are referring to tapping out the ash while smoking when you ask how often to ash. I do not do that very often at all. If I have packed the bowl properly then I don't see a reason to do that. If on the other hand you have over packed your pipe that might need to be done. I just tamp the tobacco down maybe once or twice through the entire smoke depending on the size of the pipe. If you over tamp the bowl you run the risk of closing off the draw hole and getting a mouthful of ash when you get to the bottom, not good. I also don't always smoke to the complete bottom of the bowl unless it is still tasting good. After all it is about having a relaxing, enjoyable smoke above all else.
I prefer a light draw. I find it to be a drier and cooler smoke that way as well. Every pipe is different also. Some pipes will gurgle more than others and some will gurgle only if overpacked with tobacco that is too moist. It is a lot of trial and error in the beginning but worth the trouble. When you get it down pat the rewards of a great smoke make it all worth while.
Thank you again Paul. You are a testament to a nice forum here. I will give the method another go tonight. Already working on bowl 4 today that's alot for me. But I like this way of packing a bowl. I just ordered a vertigo briar but it's a soft flame as well which leaves me wondering, should I have ordered a torch?
Guess I'll head back to gravity filling and the three step tier. Tried the frank method in a cob tonight and I had a lousy smoke. That said, like Paul advised, gravity filling a few times and the normal light tamping leads to a quality smoke every time at least for me being pretty new to pipe smoking. Just had to satisfy my curiosity. I may return to the frank method later but the royal Cajun ebony in a cob and my attempt at it this time were not good. That said, I did have pretty good results in my Pete donegal rocky and a nice dry Patton baccy
A torch lighter is a definite NO-NO!!!!!!!!
I'm well aware of the Frank method: It's an unnecessary complication of a simple procedure! And the torch lighter he uses burns far too hot for pipes, and you run a serious risk of scorching the rim!
You've already had great advice from Paul, and here's another method you could try:
Drizzle your tobacco in until full, then take another wad of tobacco and just shove it in so that you end up with your pipe being filled just below the rim.
When lighting pay particular attention to the centre being well lit, the rest will take care of itself. Tamp lightly round the edges so your ash maintains a dome-shape.
With a bit of practise you will get a nicely burning, cool smoke with just one starter light, no re-lights, all the way down the bottom.
Let us know how you get on!