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My first experience with a plug, Jack knife to be specific.

Discussion in 'Pipe Tobacco' started by Eric Pierson, Mar 4, 2013.

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  1. Eric Pierson

    Eric Pierson Resident Giant

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    Awhile ago I was teetering on the idea of whether to lay down heavy on 8 oz can of JKP right off or purchase a two ounce not being sure if I would like it or not. I ended up getting 2oz to test the waters. It sat in the cellar for a few months and I decided to start the experience last night.

    Opening the can I did not get much of a scent, but that might be due to the hour long session with Jock's I just finished. The presentation was as I expected a perfect cube inside the dog eared paper typical to Pease tobacco. Now what to do.

    Reading many reviews and differing opinions I decided I would make beautiful flakes with a knife. My first mistake came upon my selection of knife as I chose a utility knife. As I cut into it, I instantly realized this was not like slicing butter and unfortunately my knife would not go all the way through. Like an idiot I decided I would just sice it from the bottom after. After slicing, I turned it over and sliced from the bottom.

    The odds of my slice matching up with the top slice were slim, but I did not expect for it to not be deep enough. Thus I was left with a little mohawk about an eight inch slim in the middle. I should have stopped and got a different knife, but I didn't. I thought I would just have smaller flakes and that wasn't a bad thing. So I started slicing like a madman and actually started to fear for my safety as the top of the plug started to rotate as the layers were starting to unfold. In a panic I started peeling off some top layeers thinking I would just tear them up.

    Eventually ended up doing this with the entire block and was left with what looked like the wreckage of a razed building. Doing all of this in my garage, my fingers were starting to freeze as it was quite cold last night. I resolved to pack a bowl as best I could to smoke in the morning and stuffed the remainder of my wreckage back in the tin.

    Smoking this mess was problematic as the light and draw was never right to begin with. Fussing with this while driving was dangerous, if not a bit reckless, as I was using the poking part of my pipe tool to poke holes through the packed bowl so air would properly flow. I did get some decent flavor at times, but I think my haphazzard cutting may have corrupted Greg Pease's initial intentions as I felt my maiden smoke was Kentucky heavy.

    I am thinking I will have to put the rest into a coffee grinder or something to work it into something that will behave better, but am now open to suggestions. Lol I do think it tastes great, but now am happy I opted for the 2 oz as opposed to the 8 oz. If I did decide to go 8 oz in the future it will definitely be the Ready Rubbed variety. I think I am done with plugs.
     
    HazyDat620, Brit abroad and James1956 like this.
  2. James1956

    James1956 Member

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    I have suffered through many poorly packed bowls, and trying to correct them while driving is quite an adventure! Smoking during the commute is my only opportunity to enjoy an uninterrupted bowl, and it's very disappointing when it doesn't work out well. I'll take your advice, and opt for the ready rubbed.
     
    Eric Pierson likes this.
  3. kleidophoros

    kleidophoros Member

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    Plugs, flakes, coins; I am not a fan too. Most of the time they are too much trouble especially the need to dry them for hours. So my first tries to smoke some flakes was a disaster too; packed too tight, packed too light, too moist or too dry.
    Then I started experimenting with flakes; Penzance, Luxury Bulls Eye, Irish Flake, Peterson's 3P, FVF, Stonehaven and a few more. Krumble kakes not too difficult, just rub it out a bit and it's good to go. Try to get some chunks don't rub to a ribbon cut.
    Plugs, you will need a sharp knife. I tried to fold'n stuff, didn't work out. Rubbing to a fine ribbon defeats the purpose of flake cut. So just like you did try to cut some flakes and cube cut them; I think it's the easiest way to smoke flakes.
    I still hate the fact that I have to prepare the tobacco I will smoke in 3 hours but once in a while I do smoke a flake. Good thing most oriental blends come in ribbon cut.

    Ohh and poking holes, I don't think it ever works. Just empty the bowl and repack if the draw isn't good enough.
     
  4. Glenn

    Glenn Active Member

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    I have had the best luck with plugs using a large, sharp chef's knife and a solid cutting board. I can cut nice even flakes of whatever thickness I want, even on real hard plugs line 3P. Get up over the top of it with your shoulders, start with the knife tip on the cutting board and one hand pressing down on top of the tip end of the knife. Press down with the knife handle shearing through the plug like the huge unich making paper cutter your grade school teachers had.
     
    MikeInMaine likes this.
  5. Brit abroad

    Brit abroad Active Member

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    Eric I don't mean to laugh but that truly was funny, I love JKP, just use a good sturdy sharp knife and you are good to go, rub it out like a flake, or cut the flakes up with scissors into cubes pack light and youre off, hope you have better luck in the future, enjoy!
     
  6. phinz

    phinz Active Member

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    FWIW, Penzance is a Krumble Kake, not a flake. It's stupid easy to use. I love the stuff, much as I love Anni Kake, for the ease of use.
     
  7. kleidophoros

    kleidophoros Member

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    Yeah I know it's a krumble kake. 3P is not a flake either. Sometimes I just use flake for all of them.
     
    phinz likes this.
  8. Eric Pierson

    Eric Pierson Resident Giant

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    I actually enjoy flakes, medallions or anything that just requires rubbing, including crumble Kakes. But I am pretty sure the cutting thing is not for me, but you mention the need to dry them for hours, that may have been my downfall. I started slicing immediately after opening the tin. For some reason I thought it might get rock hard as it dried.

    Funny that you have tried the poking holes thing too. It is something I never heard of before, but in my mind it seems like it would work in principal. But you're right, it never does.
     
  9. Eric Pierson

    Eric Pierson Resident Giant

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    Glenn and Brit, I can't believe I am thinking this, but you two are actually making me think of trying this again. I should have asked how to do this before I started. lol Although I will likely buy the RR version of JKP next time, I may have to give this a try with Triple Play as I am pretty sure it does not come in RR and I do want to try it. Thanks for the input.
     
    Brit abroad likes this.
  10. kleidophoros

    kleidophoros Member

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    No, cut first, dry later. You don't wanna dry more than you can smoke real fast especially not the whole plug. It will just turn bone dry and won't be good.

    Use a big, sharp knife to cut the plug, get some nice flakes, chunks whatever floats your boat, dry as much as needed and you are good to go.
     
  11. Eric Pierson

    Eric Pierson Resident Giant

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    Cool, then I did do something right. It seems like it was the knife that was the problem. Well, that and my haste. :)
     
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