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From: ????????????????????????
Subject: Pipes Digest #154 -- August 19, 1994

		 Pipes Digest #154 -- August 19, 1994
		     Circulation this issue: 476

Welcome to new members:

	 Joe Bowman			(?????????????????????????)
	 shooter			(????????????????????????????)
	 ???				(??????????????????)
	 Jean Louis Renaud		(???????????????)
	 Shooter			([email protected]@oucsace.cs.ohiou.edu)
	 Daniel E. Collins		(?????????????????)
	 Herwig Binder			(?????????????)
	 Robert J Silverman		(???????????????????)
	 Pete Kuba			(???????????????????)
	 Harvey P. Lynn			(?????????????????????)
	 ???				(?????????????????????)
	 Jeff Skaletsky			(??????????????)
	 Godfather			(????????????????????????)

And join us now for a quiet smoke as we discuss stompable floppies,
smoking under water, self-made Credo humidors, Samuel Langhorne
Clemens, and strange curveballs...

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	     Help Stop Prohibition -- Keep Tobacco Legal
			Call -- Write -- Vote
			Then, Smoke in Peace.

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From: "Kameran Kashani" <????????????????????????>
Subject: Re: Pipes Digest #153 -- August 15, 1994

Re: smoke and computer equipment (Lyn's questions
about a smoking cafe with Internet access) ...

FWIW, my college electronic music professor, who taught
recording technology among other subjects, insisted that
smoke was harmful to tape heads. Smoke particles
are abrasive and they hasten wear on the heads. I would
imagine floppy-drive heads would be susceptible
to increased wear from smoke, but I don't know
how much and how big a problem it is.

If you're thinking about installing terminals in the cafe
itself (like the cafes in San Fransisco that participate
in Cafe Net), you can get plastic keyboard covers to protect the
keyboards. They interfere a little bit with typing, but
it's not too bad and definitely worth it to keep food and
beverages out of the keys. Heck, even if the only computer
in the building will be for office management and the
all-important e-mail ;-), a keyboard cover might still
be a good idea.


"After Alpine Valley, they did Love Light, into Sugarree, into Dark Star,
into Love Light, into Sugarree, into Love Light, into Dark Star, into 
Sugarree...  and then the *moon* came out, and it was like Jerry willed it!"
-- MST3K #603                                                  ????????????

[ OTOH, I used to work in a place where people routinely left 8 inch
floppies on the floor, sans jackets, and stomped on them... compared
to that abuse, a little smoke is nothing! -S. ]

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From: Staffan Ulfberg <????????????????????>
Subject: Re: Your Pipes Digest subscription request

Hello to all of you pipe smokers!

I'm new to this mailgroup, and this is my first submission in which I
will try to introduce myself.  
My name is Staffan Ulfberg, I live in Sweden and have just completed
my Master in Computer Science at the age of 24.  I started smoking a
pipe only about half a year ago, but since then I have not smoked more
than a handfull of cigarettes.  I used to smoke, say on the average a
packet of cigarettes a week, concentrated to weekends, and now I smoke
about a full pipe of tobacco every day (mostly in front of my computer
at late nights - like now).  
I only have one pipe of the brand Ratos, made here in Sweden, which
sold for about $30; it has a briar head and a bit of ebonite and is
quite small in size - a full pipe lasts for 20-30 minutes depending on
the tobacco.  I like it very much!  Nevertheless, I'm thinking about
buying another one that should be a bit larger.  I hope to get some
recommendations here!
I live in a town in the north called Lulea, which has a quite good
tobacconist that carry about 30 different types of pipe tobacco - both
domestic and imported.  I'm currently trying a new kind every time I
buy some, so I don't really have a favourite yet...

OK, happy puffing to you all and thank you!

        Staffan (????????????????????)

[ Welcome, Staffan, and it sounds like you have it good there! -S. ]

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From: ????????????????????????? (Joe Bowman)
Subject: pipe smoker's list

Hello Steve,

I have been given your name so that I might receive (or rather be
added to) a mailing list for pipe smokers.  I am a new (or actually soon
to be) pipe smoker and need lots of advice from patient experienced
smokers to help along someone who knows nothing from purchasing a
pipe, what tobacco to begin with, correct cleaning methods, average
frequency of smoking (how many bowls a day to begin with... and to
work towards), proper use of a tamper and other accessories.

I really know nothing....except I wish to be a pipe smoker.

Any help you or your contacts could give would be helpful and add me to
your mailing list.

Also, I'm new to e-mail.  If you could tell me the proper "path" to
follow to access the mailing list, I'd appreciate it. 

Thanks again.


*  Joe Bowman -- aw ???????????????????????                           *
* "I've got two brains.  One is lost, the other's out looking for it! *

[ "How-to" guide sent, Joe! Please let us know how you make out. -S. ]

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From: ???????????????
Subject: Re: #2(2) Pipes Digest #153 -- August 15, 1994

Hi all...
Dateline:   Columbus, Ohio had a big no smoking legislation battle ( on hold
at the moment ) basically banning smoking everywhere but your bedroom ( It
was rumored they were attempting to ban it in IN-HOME businesses if anyone
but the owner was employed there! ) It has been stalled in court while they
decide if it's Constitutional .Tobacco seller's were (are? ) exempt- and the
local Smoker's Haven moved to a new location with their own smoking "lounge"
haven't been there yet, but intend to. ( is it just me, or does it seem that
the government never bothers to " look out" for the average citizen when it
comes to any other hazard  (( like nuclear testing and cancer -causing
electromagnetic waves from power lines next to schools ( where BIG BUSINESS
has a monetary stake ) but now all of the sudden--they MUST look after our
health by taking away our rights. re tobacco))   FUNNY- Now that boomers  and
post WW2 generation  ( the ones that had the army mailing them all sorts of
lucky strikes to keep them alert at their posts on the front line to defend
your rights and mine )) are aging- insurance companies will soon have to
cough < no pun intended>  up some of the millions of  $$$ that all of us have
been paying premiums on , to cover medical expenses caused  "by smoking " (
like,  jet fuel, and car emmissions and corporate polluting haven't had a
hand in giving us all cancer )   Smokers are little people turned into
scapegoats , blamed for thier own and other peoples, ills.  In the end, as
always, it's a matter of looking out for the interests $$$ of big money
companies ( Prudential, Allstate, etc. )  And worst of all... they have given
the non-smoking citizens carte blanche to treat smokers like child molesters
( " You're giving my child Cancer, you murderer!!" ) Pardon me maam, did you
drive a car here to the restaurant? Did you fly in a jet to go on vacation to
Florida this year? Did you light wood fires in your fireplace last winter?
Spray Bug spray? Fertilize the lawn with chemicals? Vote for that new
trash-burning power plant, or toxic-waste dumping, tax abating,  company from
overseas because it was suggested that you do so, by the political party of
your choice, to help bring jobs to your newly revitalized city?  . At the
risk of sounding like Chicken Little .. One day, people are verbally bashing
smokers, next day, we're all helping push people into ovens!   O.K.- maybe
that's a bit extreme, but when did America stop being the land of the
free????!!!! Steve--- I knowthis is probably waaayy to long to stick on the
Digest, but for what it's worth...
GideonH   :-/ ~~~~~~

[ I've echoed the sentiment here, Gideon. Thanks, and keep on
reminding the officecritters that we aren't going to be legislated
away. -S. ]

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From: Neil Flatter <???????????????????????????>
Subject: Re: Pipes Digest #153 -- August 15, 1994

>    2) Is there anyone out there with advice on home flavoring?
>       I'd like to try a few things: maple syrup (the real stuff),
>       vanilla, and maybe almond. There has to be a way to flavor
>       some myself.

A colleague down the hall used to smoke a pipe while on submarine
duty in the Navy.  He kept a flask of peach brandy on board and would
use it to moisten the tobaccoo.  The captain would stop by on his
daily tour to chat and have a smoke.  You might give that a try.
Neil Flatter                 Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Chemistry - Math (CMA)       Department of Chemistry Stockroom Manager
Novell Supervisor            5500 Wabash Avenue 73
(812) 877 - 8316             Terre Haute, IN 47803-3999
  FAX 877 - 3198             ???????????????????????????

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From: Bruce Given     <??????????????????????????>

TO: Steve Masticola
FR: Bruce Given  ??????????????????????????
DA: 16 August 1994 at 9:02am

Hi Steve, Just back from 2 weeks in london (england)
I will write up a little article for the digest in the next couple of days
visted all the good store's B and H  and Dunhill's
any way while I was ther I fell in love with the Sherlock homles petersen
( this in a new release over and above there limited edition release a couple)
of years ago..  but I refuse to pay what they want in Pounds I understand that
Nick from levin imports petersen but I lost his Phone number do you have it ?
look forward to hearing from you !!!

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From: Karen Hale <?????????????????????>
Subject: Time to go

Greetings Steve!

First off I want to thank you for the beginner pipe smoker's starter kit
that you mailed to me a while back. Sad thing is that I was sick all winter
and never got a chance to try it out. Also since my allergies now include
tobacco smoke I will probably never get a chance to check it out :(  I have
given the kit to one of my male friends who is enjoying it!  Fate does
deliver us curve balls :(

I also want to thank you for all the work you have been doing with the
mailing list! I have enjoyed reading it through the months! However, I will
soon be disconnecting my Internet account (end of August) and moving to a
rural community that does not yet have an Internet connectivity <sigh> so I
would appreciate if you would please unsubscribe me to the pipe digest. My
sysadmin here at teleport.com would also appreciate it :)

Again thanks for all your time and effort and may whatever gods there be
smile upon you! :)

be full of care, cya, Karen

[ As I said before, best of luck in your new venture, Karen! And I'm
glad your male friend is getting some use out of it. And, as for fate
throwing strange curves, see below... :-) -S. ]

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From: Nathan Gade <???????????????????????????>
Subject: First Post

I've been reading the group since may now and thought it was time to 
post.  Bear with me folks my typing is only a little better then my 
spelling so some interesting letter formations may appear on your screen 
when readin' someting i write, but you seem like a mellow group that only 
applys a flame to tobbaco so here goes.

I got my first pipe from my wife that recieved it as a free intro package 
for females from someware (probably someone on this list).  It had lots 
of matches (Swans i think was the brand), a pipe (ove course), around 2oz 
of vanilla cavendish, and some cleaners.  The pipe was really great but 
like a fool i passed it on to a friend after i bought my third pipe.  At 
the time i thought the bowl was too big.

My second pipe was a mistake it has a laquor finish that bubbles horibly 
every time i smoke it, i'm thinking of sanding the damb thing down and 
just leaving it natural.

The pipe i smoke now i've become very fond of.  It is made in Italy but i 
don't know the bran, i payed $16 or so for it so i'm sure its nothing 
special.  It has a curved stem and maderate sized bowl that i have 
learned to smoke from start to finish with one lighting, it took me 2 
months to perfect this.  I'm now working on ridding myself of the problem 
of juice build up and having fair success.

My favorite tobbaco to date is still a vanilla cavendish.  Could anybody 
suggest a Good blend of this since i'm now smoking a cheap one that 
though i tink it is good could be much better.  I like a strong vanilla 
tast but not so much as to feal like a menthol cig and numb out my 

Enough babbeing though.  What i really posted to ask is if anyone has 
tried to carve thier own pipe.  I am a poor collage student that can't 
afford to buy them and have had little success find them used in my 
area.  Is there a good book i could track down to show the proccess that 
will save me many headaces of trial and error?  There was a post in an 
earlyer issue where someone asked about pipe making but i never heard a 
reply on the digest.  Thanks in advance for any advice/help.


[ Welcome, Nate! I think I know _exactly_ where the kit came from. :-)
"Pimo's Illustrated Guide to Pipe Carving (see the Resource Guide) is
about the best I've found. There's also a video tape available from an
outfit called HTV in Dover, Del. -S. ]

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From: "David Malecki" <?????????????????????????????????>
Subject: Cavendish Tobacco

Subject:Cavendish Tobacco
In Digest 150 Tom Line posted a text file which I found very good reading. 
The part about cavendish tobacco has me wondering though.  Tom wrote:

>        3. Cabendish or English tobacco.
>             This stuff is black. Unlike Burley tobaccos which are
>             a brown color, Cabendish looks like it's been in a
>             smoker for a couple weeks black and smells like
>             burnt coals. 

I can't say about English tobacco (which others have pointed out is not the
same as cavendish), but the cavendish I've used smells very sweet and
almost chocolatey, certainly not like any burnt coals I've smelled.  The
smell was so temping (good enough to eat), that I did try chewing a bit.  I
learned my lesson about smells good and tastes good pretty fast :). 
Anyway, that's just my opinion, and we're all entitled to our own.

So put that in your pipe and smoke it, or whatever else you may enjoy, I'll
keep smoking my cavendish.


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From: ???????????????
Subject: Internet Pipes Mailgroup

Steve, Thanks for getting back to me. I'm interested in getting
involved. I'm a novice hobby collector with an interest in meerschaums
and unique briars. Would like to know about any shows in the Northeast
or Canada (since I'm from the Toronto area).I have some contacts with
museaum quality collections (private).How can we connect ? Any help
would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. ???????????????  (Gord Ferguson)

[ There was just recently a show in Boston; haven't heard of any in
Toronto. -S. ]

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From: Bruce Given     <??????????????????????????>

TO: Steve Masticola
FR: Bruce Given  ??????????????????????????
DA: 18 August 1994 at 9:02am

Hi Steve, Just back from 2 weeks in london (england)
Thanks for the pointer on NML pipes managed to get the info from a friend
directory where pretty useless......Please find attached my trip report
for london.

================================== CUT HERE ================================

Having just returned from 2 weeks in  London I have the following to mention
concerning Pipe and Tobbaco hunting in London.

First and Foremost get a copy of a publication called  'Pipesmokers Welcome
guide 1994' Published by The Pipesmokers Council 19 Elrington Road, London
E8 3BJ.( Just write them a letter and they will post it to you ..)
This Publication is Great not just for London but for the ENTIRE UK.it lists
Most of the pipes Stores worth visting, a who's who in the Pipe and Tobacco
Industry, A complete listing of most of the avaliable tobaccos with there

I visted the following stores in london  Benson & Hedges, G Smith & Son,
Shervingtons,Alfred Dunhill, James J Fox and Robert Lewis, Davidoff

Benson and Hedges.13 Old Bond Street.
Nice collection of Pipes Dunhill, Peterson and Cigars, B and H do no longer
have a house blend pipe tobacco.

G Smith and Son. 74 Charing Cross Road
What a truly amazing collection of Tobacco's and pipes ( good prices on pipes )
also Have Snuff !!! ( I understand from talking to them that they make it them
selves.) they have a extensive mail order service ( Export as well !!)

Alfred Dunhill 30 Duke Street.
This store is truly amazing. the smokers selection is at the rear of the store
at the front is the luxury show room.
they have a wonderful selection of Hand blended tobaccos approx 30 blends are
avaliable ( If any body is interested I can supply a list via email )
they are also very willing to do mail order to US and Canada. you can also ask
to join the Followship of the white dot  Quote " The fellowship of the white
dot allows Duhill aficionados from around the world to discuss and exchange
views and learn about the exciting new developments in the pipe smoking field"
( If anybody is interested email me for the address.)

Shervingtons 337/338 High Holburn
Est 1864 , the building was built in 1545, they have a nice range of Peterson's
and Dunhill's also had cheaper no name brand pipes, they have range of generaly
avaliable Tobacco's there House Brand is made by G Smith and Son. also stock
a good range of Cuban Cigars. Worth visting just to see the building.

James J Fox & Robert Lewis 19St James's Street.
these two names have recently merged and carry a good range of Tobacco's
including there own.have a great range of Cuban cigars.

Davidoff 35 St James Street
Just up the street from Fox and Lewis worth visting on the way down  the street
have the usual Davidoff products including Peterson,Dunhill,Charatan and of
course the USUAL Davidoff PRICES !!!!

Of course there are many more stores in London and I am sure that I missed
some great places ( Please let me know for my next vist.). hope this
helps anybody planing a trip to Lond on in the Near future..

Smoke In Peace
Bruce Given
Motorola Montreal.

[ Teriffic! Thanks for the trip report, Bruce! -S. ]

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From: ????????????????????????????????
Subject:  New Subscriber

Thanks for including me on the Mail Pipes list.  I have enjoyed
reading the last 
 two issues and thought I'd submit a couple of items/comments.

I am 36 years old and started smoking pipes about 2-3 years ago.  It
took about six months to really be able to enjoy the whole process.
It might have taken longer. . . if I had not read the available books
and got advice from some experienced folks at a local shop.

Since then, I have been in search of the "ultimate blend," and the
search has been quite interesting.  Quickly figuring out that several
shop sells some of the same mixtures under their own name and learning
that there really is special blend out there, it just takes time and
flexibility to get to them.  I have also been enjoying a good cigar
once in a while, this started about five years ago(Henry Clays or
Gloria Cubana).  I still use a pipe the majority of the time when
smoking.  Like most, but not all, folks who smoke pipes and/or cigars,
I do not smoke cigarettes.  This seems to be the common finding in
most articles, meetings and research these days so I guess I'm no

I have tried several mixtures of both aromatic and English blends and
concluded that both types have alot to offer.  Right now my favorites


o Aromatic mix No.7, Cherry, from Levin Pipes.  It is a great
flavorful blend that burns well and needs almost no rubbing out.
Interestingly, it is not you typical bland cavendish with flavoring.
Also, people will beg you to smoke it because it has a great aroma.
It makes friends with non-smokers.


o Frog Morton, from Levin Pipes.  A more tradition strong mixture with
plenty of latakia and other exotica blended in.  This dark
non-aromatic mixture smokes much sweeter than it looks.


o Vintage Bend, from the TinderBox.  It's an aromatic, and is very
light in flavor.  It is completely light brownish and needs no rubbing
out whatsoever(I think it is called cube cut, if that makes sense).  I
do not know what flavor it is but the first 3/4 of the bowl are always
great and the remainder is rather bland.  It burns warm to hot, so it
goes quickly.  It is a very subtle tobak.


Last, Bengal Slices.  So far, this is the best canned or off-the-shelf
blend.  As one fellow mentioned in a recent issue, they do need to be
rubbed out thoroughly.  If they are very moist, they will not light.
But the fuss is worth it as the taste is great.  Maybe not for a
beginner.  Notably, I tried slices labeled aromatic, in the exact same
tin as the traditional slices.  It was terrible.  A perfume-like
scented block of tasteless _r_p.  Then accidentally, I found a "pouch"
of Bengal Aromatic.  No slices, but a rather sticky mixture in a moist
bag.  Very flavorful though.  Completely different that the other
Bengal products.  If anyone locates a pouch or two of this, let me
know.  The Bengal saga continues.


Anyone find any other Bengal products that we don't know about????

I have tried several Pipe brands.  I like the Peterson bent pipes, in
briar and meerschaum.  I am presently looking for a new "large-bowl
Peterson meerschaum." I enjoy the Mark Twin and Standard model the

Looking forward to the next issue.

Take Care -Jeof

[ Thanks, Jeof! Might try Bengal Slices one of these days, and I
concur about the Mark Twain. -S. ]

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From: Harvey Lynn <????????????????????>
Subject: request for back issues of digest


  I received my Introductory Letter/Resource Guide today.  Thanks
alot.  I just discovered this newsgroup yesterday and it's already
broadened my horizons.

  I started smoking pipes several years ago when my father passed
away and I inherited some of his pipes.  My mom tossed all but the
Merschaums.  I guess I lke pipes because of the pleasure and 'peace'
that it gives me.  I don't think of it as a habit as I do fo cigarettes
which I gave up 15 years ago.

  I've never smoked the Merschuams because they're almost works of
art.  I usually buy estate pipes that've been refurbished on pipes
in the clearance bin for 1/2 price.  My favorite is a Savenelli.
I tend to like pipes with a slight curve as I can hold them in my mouth
easier with out fatiguing my jaws.

  As for tobacco, I've settled in with an aromatic type blend(Captain
Black to start).  Today, after one day of subscribing to the newsgroup,
I bought an English type blend.

  I now buy my tobacco an Ed's Tinder Box(2729 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica
CA  90403).  It's the original of a franchise that has since broken with
it's offspring for being too 'commercial'.  They provide good consule
and even free samples and free bowls with a new pipe.

  Thanks again for the Resource Guide.  I'd also like to request back
issues of the digest, if that's possible, which I read about in the
alt.smokers.pipes newsgroup.

Harvey P. Lynn                                       RAND, Santa Monica, CA
?????????????????????                                USA
			 "Who loves ya, Baby?"
                          (Standard disclaimer)

[ Thanks, Harvey! Back issues sent. -S. ]

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From: ???????????????
Subject: How to Make Your Own Credo Humidifier!

Yes! A Homemade Credo Humidifier!

I could go out and buy a Rondo or Credo Precision 70 humidifier, but my Dad
brought me up to respect "inventing, modifying, and tinkering."  I have done
my research and have come up with a homemade version of the Credo system.  I
began looking at the various humidifiers and found that the best ones Credo,
Rondo, and even the ones you find in the really nice Savinelli humidors, used
a material that I recognized.  It finally dawned on me that they were using
the same material that florist shops were using for flower arrangements!
 That foam like material inside these units, is known commercially as Oasis.
 It comes in different varieties (wet-dry-etc.), but you want the "wet"
style, which happens to be green and costs about .98 cents for a huge
rectangular block. This stuff holds a tremendous amount of water, it is
incredible.  I bought a 1 gallon jug of distilled water awhile ago to have
around for my motorcycle battery, this cost me .98 cents. Why spend $4.00 on
a small bottle of distilled water at the tobacconist?

Now we need a container. The best container for this homemade contraption is
a "Bering Imperial" aluminum cigar tube. This tube is nice because the end
cap is plastic and snaps on tightly. Instead of the screw-off type (which
might leak). Here comes the fun part. First you have to smoke the cigar that
came in the tube! Bearable! So much for that. Find one of those plastic push
pins that's used on corkboards to hold notes (color doesn't matter.) Use this
push pin to start punching a series of holes into the tube. I did mine in
straight lines only up one side of the tube similar to this crude
illustration which follows. Think of the open paren as the bottom of the
tube, the bracket as the cap, & the colons as the holes. ( :::::::: ]  This
way as the tube lays in with the humidor with the "naked" cigars, the holes
are only on the top half portion of the tube and there are no holes on the
bottom or sides to let water out. So if you were to take the tube and look
into it, the holes would run down the tube lengthwise in the 10 to 2 o'clock
area. Can you vision it now? Then take a knife and cut a long thin square off
of the Oasis foam, wittle it down until it fits comfortably in the tube.  Or
just run the tube down into the foam. Wet it down with the distilled water.
Distilled water is more mold resistant. There you go! One to two of these
will treat a large humidor perfectly, depending on where you live.

Here's a great variation. I have a three finger cigar case "Romeo Y Julieta."
I took one of those tubes and punched two 1/4 inch strips of holes, one up
each side, and I started an inch from the bottom. This way if I put it in the
center slot of the case, the two sides with holes point to the cigars on
either side of it. A traveling humidor! Better than the one Humidif makes. I
only used a small slice of sponge foam in this - it doesn't need that much

For a large can of pipe tobacco like 200grams or more, you can use a 35mm
film plastic canister. Punch holes in the gray plastic lid and cut out a core
of Oasis for the can. Set it in with the tobacco.

If you want to create the perfect solution to treat your humidifier every two
months, try to locate some glycerin from a drug store, and mix it with your
distilled water. Play with the ratio, starting with very, very little at
first. The glycerin holds the moisture longer.

Hope this is FUN for you,
Steve Banks aka "???????????????

[ GREAT detective work, Steve! Thanks! -S. ]

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From: ??????????????
Subject: Pipes Mailgroup 


Some random thoughts from the Boston Area on Ehrlichs and Leavitt & Pierce
and how times have changed.

In reading through the back issues of the Mailgroup, I have seen many
references to Ehrlichs and its sister store Leavitt & Pierce as the stores
where many members purchased their first pipes.  For those of you not from
the Boston area, Ehrlichs is in downtown Boston, while L&P is located across
from Harvard Yard, and up the street from MIT.  Over the years both shops
have introduced people to the world of pipes, including me.  Ehrlichs dates
its founding to 1868, and L&P to some later date.

I bought my first pipe from L&P in 1965, and therein lies the story for
today.  Back then both stores sold their own pipes, with only a few pipes
from other makers like Dunhill and Peterson.  Many of the pipes for sale were
made outside the shop, but in the front window of Ehrlichs was a man named
George Bushey who made pipes on the premises, as well as repairing pipes
which had met with accidents.  In the 1960's, the house lineup of pipes, from
best to worst ran something like this:

     Straight Grains     Flawless straight grain Algerian briar       $25.00
     Algerian Briar      Flawless Algerian, grain other than straight $20.00?
     Select              Aged Algerian briar, good grain         $17.50?
     Harvard (H)         Good aged Briar                    $15.00
     ?              Some small pits, average grain          $12.50
     ?              Novelty Pipes (Leather clad, etc.)      $10.00
     ?              Straight grain seconds, major fills          $ 3.85

My first pipe was in the last group.  It was and is, an aged Algerian briar
with beautiful grain marred by a major fill on the right side.  The putty is
about 3/8's of an inch across and extends through the briar up to the rim.  A
wonderful pipe to look at from one side: a tragedy to view from the other.  I
was persuaded to buy it by the wise old man running the shop as a way of
getting to know the joys of pipes without spending a fortune on a pipe.  Back
then a straight grain at $25.00 was about a third of one's net take home pay
for a recent grad of any of the colleges around, and a fortune for a student.
 He was right, and I have enjoyed the pipe throughout the years.  It smokes
cool, always giving a pleasant smoke without fuss.  I broke the stem (not the
tenon), had a new mortise made and refitted the stem, refilled the putty hole
once, and in general kept it with me for almost thirty years.

Back in 1965, a year after the famous Surgeon General's report on smoking
which found pipes smokers having no greater chance of cancer than non smokers
pipes were all the rage for people switching from cigarettes.  When you went
into L&P, their forty foot long display cases were filled with pipes of all
price ranges.  If you did not see anything which you liked, you asked to see
what was in the drawers behind the counters, and they brought out three or
four times the number already on display.  Most were of their own make.  The
store had a catalogue it put out several times a year listing its pipes by
grades, showing different shapes, listing twenty or thirty custom tobaccos
and other good stuff.  

I have continued to go to both stores over the years.  The changes in them
are a measure of what is happening to our hobby.  About fifteen years ago,
they ceased to have extra pipes in the back drawers to bring out to show you
if you did not like what was in the display cases. Straight grains continued
to be $25.00 and the top of the line, but by then some of them had small pits
(the Select grade of above) and they were still $25.00 By then, twenty five
dollars was the cost of a good dinner for one, not a third of one's take home
pay.  Pipes made by others were perhaps 50% of the pipes on display.  They
were mostly Petersons and Dunhills, priced at twice to four times Ehrlichs
house name.  The table of seconds had risen to $7.95 or so, and they were no
longer only straight grain seconds, but also seconds of average grain.

By the end of 1993, the top of the line was no longer straight grain but was
Algerian briar. 
Some small pits in the grain, most of the grain tight, but straight grains
were hard to find. 
When you did find a straight grain it was comparable to or lesser than an
Upshall second.  Still $25.00, but now twenty five dollars was the cost of
movie for two, with popcorn and a soda.  Only a third of the pipes in the
store were house brands, and pipes were then a third of the shop with wine
another third and cigars the remaining third.  Pipes from people other than
the house brands included Upshall (Dunhill put their own store in Boston, and
that seems to be the only outlet for this brand), Ser Jacapo, Peterson and
American.  Once and awhile there are some estate pipes from an old customer.
 ( American is an interesting side bar.  As I understand the story, George
Bushey had an apprentice in the late 70's early 80's named Steve Johnson.
 Steve turned out some beautiful pipes in Boston (freehands many of them),
and then moved to Pennsylvania.  He continued to make pipes there through the
1980's, teaming up with someone whose initials are MT.  MT continued on with
the American line while Steve went to NY and eventually left the business.
 American continues on with pipes distinguished by their curved shapes, and
stems which never discolor and seldom get teeth marks.) 

Earlier this year the top of the line for house brands was still $25.00, but
the top of the line for other brands was Upshall P's at $225.00 retail while
others in the city had Upshall P's for $175.00 and routinely discounted off
the $175.00 price.  Ehrlichs only went on sale once or twice a year off the
$225.00 price.  The catalogue was gone- replaced by a mere listing of the
blends they sold.

Last month I visited and another major break had taken place.  Top of the
line house brands had ceased to be Algerian briars,  The top of the line went
from $25.00 to $50.00, a doubling.  Instead of old, tight Algerian grain the
top is now good grain, oil finish, few pits, briar from unknown places.  The
house lines have shrunk to three grades,  top of the line at $50.00, lesser
grains at $37.50, and seconds at $17.95.  House brands are now less than
twenty percent of the pipes, and pipes are twenty percent of the store.  Wine
is another twenty percent, and cigars are the remaining sixty percent.  Gone
is the lathe in the window for fixing pipes in house and all of the repairs
are shipped out, probably to MT, based on the type of stems they come back

I tell the store to illustrate the changes going on in the world of pipes.
 While I have not been to pipe stores in many cities outside Boston, I have
the sense from reading the Mailgroup that it has parallels in New York,
Chicago and other areas.  Anyone care to comment on their favorite local
store gone by the wayside, taking with it the local brand names we started
out with, leaving us with a few names to chose from like Dunhill, Upshall,
Ser Jacapo, Castello and the others?  I for one miss the days of the local
maker with his own idiosyncratic shapes and grains.  How about the rest of

Smoke in peace
Steve Wyman
Concord, Massachusetts

[ I guess quality is _never_ what it used to be, Steve. Keep your eyes
out for some good antiques... and thanks for the report on Leavitt and
Pierce and Ehrlich's. -S. ]

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		       Today's Snappy Comeback:

(At a house party:) "I see our host invited all kinds."

				- From "101 Ways to Answer the
				  Question, 'Would You Please Put Out
				  that #(!&*!$ Cigar'," Hague et. al.,

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 )				       *   *                                 ( 
( Pipe smokers will rule the world!      *      Internet Pipes Mailgroup      )
 ) (if they don't run out of matches...) *  (for all who enjoy fine tobacco) ( 
(					 *        			      )
 )           Steve Masticola, moderator  *  (????????????????????????)       ( 
(				       *   *				      )
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Article Index

  1. Subject: Pipes Digest #154 -- August 19, 1994
  2. Subject: Re: Pipes Digest #153 -- August 15, 1994
  3. Subject: Re: Your Pipes Digest subscription request
  4. Subject: pipe smoker's list
  5. Subject: Re: #2(2) Pipes Digest #153 -- August 15, 1994
  6. Subject: Re: Pipes Digest #153 -- August 15, 1994
  7. Subject: STEVE POST
  8. Subject: Time to go
  9. Subject: First Post
  10. Subject: Cavendish Tobacco
  11. Subject:Cavendish Tobacco
  12. Subject: Internet Pipes Mailgroup
  13. Subject: STEVE POST
  14. Subject: New Subscriber
  15. Subject: request for back issues of digest
  16. Subject: How to Make Your Own Credo Humidifier!
  17. Subject: Pipes Mailgroup
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