Anyone try these mini-meers that seem to be everywhere?! I have 2 meers and love the hell outta them, but at $12 a pop these sounds like killer deals. The bowls aren't terribly small...maybe a good 15-30min smoke?!
The ones I've seen use pressed meerschaum (meerschaum dust from shavings mixed with an epoxy) instead of block, which means they neither smoke nor color as a real meerschaum pipe would. Further, they use the old-style stem connector which makes them hard to draw. Not worth even $12 IMHO.
I purchased both of mine for tobacco testing last year. Both were block meer, and colored accordingly. Yeah, $12 bucks is a killer deal on paper, but the crappy connectors start to cause problems. I did break one, although overuse softened the stummel...not difficult to achieve on so small a pipe. The other, the stem threads about 90° too far now. Unless I add a washer to it, it is not practical to use.
I wouldn't say they are worthless, but do keep in mind their limitations.
Ya everything you guys said is sorta what I figured. What are some good sites for getting some good quality, moderately priced regular meers? The two I have I got from my local shop...but their prices have skyrocket in the past year and I can hardly afford to get anything but pipe cleaners from those guys now.
It depends on your notion of quality...more specifically, what amount of money you can plunk down on a pipe. Most decent meers will run approximately $100 dollars. The quality artisans typically charge $150 and up.
Artisan pipe makers to check out (their respective website url's escape me ATM) would be fellows like Fikri Baki and Sinan Altinok. Again, their pipes will likely run $150 and up...emphasis on up. But the level of fit and fitments is obviously better, too.
Both of these gentlemen use carvers of quality. Baki works through Deniz, but his pipes are of a higher quality than most of the other carvers used by these gents. So then, are the prices.
If this is your first foray into meerschaum ownership, I would look to Sinan. He carries a line of classic shapes priced around $150.00....worth every dime. They will be of good quality, in both carving and engineering.
Just click on "Pipes" and look for his "classic" and/or "figural" pages. You're sure to find something in your budget that calls to you!
Then check out some of his carvers....I have two from Sevket Gezer that are stunning, and aKudret that really rocks.
My 'daily' mini-meer is small, light and a good smoker - albeit sometimes a little hot, if care is not taken with the fill. I forget just what I paid for it in Turkey - but it was a lot more than $12!.....the old adage :- 'you get what you pay for' applies....as usual.
Just a bit of added incentive...got a note from Sinan. He's having his annual summer sale right now. From my e-mail:
The motto is "Buy Three Classic pipes, Get Third 50% OFF". In other words, you save 16.66% in total when ordered three classic pipes. To get benefit of this sale, you need to order any three pipes at once from my Classic series. The price of each US$ 119.95 as set for a long time. This means that you will save $60.00 immediately.
WHAT TO DO
Your discount code is SUM2011. After adding three pipes into your shopping cart, enter the code into the popup window to be opened when clicked on the Enter Discount Code link in the shopping cart page. That's all.
WHERE TO FIND THE PIPES
My Classic collection is shown in three pages as their links follow:
My thinking is that three of you who might be interested in a great new pipe might get together to share the discount, and split the cost of shipping? This basically cuts the price from $120.00 each, to an even $100.00 each. Not a bad deal!
No affiliation...just a very satisfied customer trying to help out some friends.............