New pipe smoker needs advise on this pipe.

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#1
I just bought this pipe on ebay for $11.00.
It is a SAVINELLI EXTRA 803 KS.

I am retired, and live on very little Soc. Sec., so I went cheap, just to see if I like smoking a pipe.

I guess the best for me to do is to just post pictures and ask for advise from what you see such as:

Should I ream the bowl?
how does the pipe look for such a cheap price?
etc.
I know absolutely nothing about pipes, so any advise you may have on what you see please let me know.

(Cannot post pics, here is the link: )

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=350308742359&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT

Thanks.
 

Sweatsack

Member
Member
#2
Newbie here, too, but just to give you something to think about until someone who knows what they're talking about can respond...

Savs are pretty good smokers and I wouldn't hesitate to pay $11 for one. You could have got a new corncob for cheaper; they are generally recommended for newbies, they're the best "bang for your buck" and it's good to have a couple around anyway. Obviously it's too late now but if you get your eBay purchase and can tell right off the bat that it's a bust, I'd look into a cob.

Generally speaking I wouldn't get too crazy reaming out the bowl because you'll just have to rebuild that cake. If it's thicker than a dime width you might take it down a bit but I'd be more concerned about thoroughly cleaning the rest of it. Again, that's just my understanding, someone with more experience might tell you otherwise.

Also I don't know what's going on with the top of the bowl, whether it's burning through or if that's just some extra cakey goodness you can take down.

Either way, you've already bought it so you might as well smoke it. What do you have to burn in it?
 
#3
A pipe like that would need a serious cleaning and repair. I'd pick a different one for a first, to be honest with you. Savs are great smokers... just, that one wouldn't be my first pick. Great pipemaker Lee Von Erck once said, "Buy what you can afford, not what's the cheapest or most affordable."

--and there's some merit to that, I daresay. My advice: buy a new $30-$40 briar pipe and some good tobacco.
 

user0003

Well-Known Member
#4
Well bought, Sav 803 are great pipes. It needs a good cleaning and should make for a great smoker. You can take a blunt/rounded ended tool and scrape the cake out of the bowl and the rim. Take some tooth paste and baking soda and polish the stem. If while cleaning it you find a filter inside the stem remove and discard. You can use rubbing alcohol and pipe cleaner to clean the inside. WARNING...do not let the alcohol get on the outside of the pipe it will damage the finish. You'll have a great starter pipe after a little cleaning work. Ask any questions that you may have and we will answer them.

Welcome to the forums and enjoy your new hobby.
 
#5
Jesla said:
Well bought, Sav 803 are great pipes. It needs a good cleaning and should make for a great smoker. You can take a blunt/rounded ended tool and scrape the cake out of the bowl and the rim. Take some tooth paste and baking soda and polish the stem. If while cleaning it you find a filter inside the stem remove and discard. You can use rubbing alcohol and pipe cleaner to clean the inside. WARNING...do not let the alcohol get on the outside of the pipe it will damage the finish. You'll have a great starter pipe after a little cleaning work. Ask any questions that you may have and we will answer them.

Welcome to the forums and enjoy your new hobby.
Thanks, I thought it was a good buy for $11.00.
I knew it would need some work, but to me it looked as though someone really enjoyed this pipe, and smoked the :poop: out of it.
It doesn't look as though it just sat unused.

I am not concerned over the pipe "looking" new, just want to get a good smoke out of it is all.

I was wondering about the balsam filters?
I wasn't sure whether or not to get some before smoking it,
but it seems as though you are suggesting to smoke without a filter?

I assume that without a filter, I would have to draw easier?
(I guess I will find out soon enough though)

Thanks for the tips on cleaning, I am going to have fun getting this thing to smoke up a storm....it just looks like a smoker to me.
 

Mister Moo

Gone but not forgotten
Staff member
Member
#6
What Jesla said; ream, clean and smoke away. I'd scrape it out carefully (pipe tool or a dull penknife, for example) so as not to damage the wood inside the chamber. If the rim won't come clean with spit and paper towels it wouldn't be the end of the world to sand it down a bit then oil or wax the bare wood. It must've been a good smoker for someone - it definitely got used. :)

Do yourself a favor though and get a Missouri Meerschaum cob to start out on. Study up on pipe cleaning and restoration while you enjoy your cob.

Cob or not, pipe filters are not much used by pipe smokers.
 

SilverFox

Member
Member
#7
From one newb to another.

Cobs are your friend. They smoke nice, they smoke easy, they are forgiving, they absorb a ton of moisture, they don't ghost. And how can you go wrong for 4 bucks. (how did I do Moo? :D)

I have 5 cobs. I use them for different tobaccos and so far the only pipe I like better is my Savinelli (it can be a little gurgly though so a pipe cleaner on hand is necessary)

Also I would recommend not starting off with a mild tobacco...........get something with a little extra to it. Especially if you haven't smoked a pipe before. The common point is to stay away from aromatics to start with although I don't know why on that one.
 

user0003

Well-Known Member
#8
limpinghawk said:
....I was wondering about the balsam filters?

Yes chunck'em

I wasn't sure whether or not to get some before smoking it,
but it seems as though you are suggesting to smoke without a filter?

I am, you don't need them. I don't use them in any of my Savinellis

I assume that without a filter, I would have to draw easier?
(I guess I will find out soon enough though)

Yes it will, plus filter tend to mute the flavor.

Thanks for the tips on cleaning, I am going to have fun getting this thing to smoke up a storm....it just looks like a smoker to me.
You will enjoy it more knowing that you brought it back to life.
 
#10
Sweatsack said:
You could have got a new corncob for cheaper; they are generally recommended for newbies, they're the best "bang for your buck" and it's good to have a couple around anyway. Obviously it's too late now but if you get your eBay purchase and can tell right off the bat that it's a bust, I'd look into a cob.
What do you have to burn in it?
I actually have a cob, I bought one of Jake Hackerts pipes.
It wasn't cheaper either, it was over twice the price I paid for the Sav.
It is the cob with the antler horn stem, haven't smoked it yet, still waiting on getting some tobacco in.

I bought some Carter Hall, and two different flakes.
One is Stokkebyes Flake Medallions,
and the other flake is a sampler of Stokkebye Luxury Navy Flake.

I think I am going to like the Flake tobacco, don't know why, just a gut feeling is all.

The Carter Hall should be here soon, so the first pipe I am going to try is the cob I have with some C H.
 

Mister Moo

Gone but not forgotten
Staff member
Member
#11
limpinghawk said:
I actually have a cob, I bought one of Jake Hackerts pipes...

The Carter Hall should be soon, so the first pipe I am going to try is the cob I have.
Perfect combination, CH and a cob. Smoke slow - enjoy.
 
#13
Mister Moo said:
What Jesla said; ream, clean and smoke away. I'd scrape it out carefully (pipe tool or a dull penknife, for example) so as not to damage the wood inside the chamber. If the rim won't come clean with spit and paper towels it wouldn't be the end of the world to sand it down a bit then oil or wax the bare wood. It must've been a good smoker for someone - it definitely got used. :)

Do yourself a favor though and get a Missouri Meerschaum cob to start out on. Study up on pipe cleaning and restoration while you enjoy your cob.

Cob or not, pipe filters are not much used by pipe smokers.
Thanks for the info. I really appreciate it.
And as I posted to another, I have a cob, just waiting to get some tobacco in.
I just kept looking around on ebay for a brier to have also, and couldn't pass this one up for 11.00.

Good to know on the filters, one less thing to buy on line.
 
#14
Mister Moo said:
If the rim won't come clean with spit and paper towels it wouldn't be the end of the world to sand it down a bit then oil or wax the bare wood. It must've been a good smoker for someone - it definitely got used. :)
I had the same thought on cleaning the top of the bowl.
If I had to I would gingerly sand it down, and then oil it up with some Olive Oil.

I'm Italian, so I use Olive Oil for everything.
 
#15
Dnemets said:
A pipe like that would need a serious cleaning and repair. I'd pick a different one for a first, to be honest with you. Savs are great smokers... just, that one wouldn't be my first pick. Great pipemaker Lee Von Erck once said, "Buy what you can afford, not what's the cheapest or most affordable."

--and there's some merit to that, I daresay. My advice: buy a new $30-$40 briar pipe and some good tobacco.
Thanks for your reply, I appreciate all the advise from everyone.
In response to that quote:
My thoughts were that I wasn't going so much for the 'cheapest',
but rather that I would be getting what appeared to be a great smoker, that needed cleaning, and get it for what I could afford.

So I do feel as though I am in the first part of that quote by Von Erck on this one.
 
#16
Jesla said:
You will enjoy it more knowing that you brought it back to life.
You hit the nail right on the head!
I will enjoy it more knowing that I am giving it new life,
much more than I would if I bought one new.

I went on a couple of sites before getting this one, and I knew that I could have gotten a decent Sav. for around $50.00 brand new.
But I wanted this old one that looked like it was really enjoyed,
besides I sort of like restoring old things and bringing them around much better than brand new.
 

Sweatsack

Member
Member
#17
limpinghawk said:
My thoughts were that I wasn't going so much for the 'cheapest',
but rather that I would be getting what appeared to be a great smoker, that needed cleaning, and get it for what I could afford.
If that's what you're looking for you probably got a good one, then. If it cleans up nice and doesn't have any flaws that the pics don't show, $11 is a steal.

FYI when I mentioned corn cobs I was thinking more along the lines of a $5-10 Missouri Meerschaum. I'm more into the briar but it never hurts to have a couple of those around.
 

cst

Member
Member
#18
looks like you probably got a good deal. Just go slow trimming back that cake. you can always take more off... It reminds me of the carpenter who said "I cut and I cut and it is still too short"
Enjoy your new pipes, those Hackert's are interesting looking pipes.
 
#19
Sweatsack said:
If that's what you're looking for you probably got a good one, then. If it cleans up nice and doesn't have any flaws that the pics don't show, $11 is a steal.

FYI when I mentioned corn cobs I was thinking more along the lines of a $5-10 Missouri Meerschaum. I'm more into the briar but it never hurts to have a couple of those around.
I know what you meant, the little $5.00 ones that drug stores carry.
In fact they have one (Yes only one) at my corner drug store it's under $6.00, I am going to pick it up just to see if the $27.00 Hackert (bought on ebay), is that much better than the $6.00 cob.
The one for $6.00 is a Meerschaum.

I copied a picture of the Sav bowl to my pics, and after looking 'real close'...
the top of the bowl does not appear to be burned, it looks to me like it is caked on ash, and will clean up well.

I know what you mean about flaws that cannot be seen, I wish I could have seen the pipe with the stem off.
But I went with what I felt when looking at the Sav, and I just fell in love with that $11.00 Sav.
 
#20
cst said:
looks like you probably got a good deal. Just go slow trimming back that cake. you can always take more off... It reminds me of the carpenter who said "I cut and I cut and it is still too short"
Enjoy your new pipes, those Hackert's are interesting looking pipes.

Thanks for the advise, believe it or not, I will actually enjoy cleaning that pipe.

Yes the Hackert is one cool looking pipe, I like the unusual anyway (I've been an artist all my life).
I've been looking at the Hackert just sitting here for a couple of weeks now.
I was just waiting to choose what tobacco I wanted to use with it,
and since they don't sell pipe tobacco anywhere near me,
I took the time to study the different tobaccos and then order on line.

However, I don't seem to have the same 'feeling' for the Hackert as I do for the Sav.
I know that I will like both pipes, but will probably grab the Sav a lot more with some flake, who knows, I may have to eat those words?

That quote of the carpenter made me laugh :XD:
 
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