Cheap smoking pipes
While we always recommend quality, a cheap smoking pipe has its place. Seasoned smokers often use inexpensive cobs and other such pipes for specific occurrences. Having a backup tobacco pipe or two that won’t leave you in tears at its loss can be an advantage in certain situations. Here are three times when a cheap pipe may be in order:
For outdoor adventures
Although cheap is relative, we’re working off the assumption that a $200 Nording pipe is a fair investment on your part. These tobacco pipes are expensive enough to replace that losing or damaging one would probably upset you a bit. So how do you lessen the risk of damage? The easiest way is to keep it out of highly hazardous situations. For example, you probably wouldn’t carry it on a hunting or fishing trip. These are the perfect situations for cheap smoking pipes like a corn cob or a Dr. Grabow.
Although a pipe pouch will protect the pipe itself when you travel, nothing protects it from loss. Whether it’s your luggage or your healthy disposition, things tend to get lost in a black hole on airplanes. We suggest using an affordable traveling pipe for any trip where an airplane is involved, especially one where your checking your tobacco pipe in at baggage claim.
For testing new tobaccos
Many veteran smokers use a corn cob or clay pipe for testing tobaccos. Both cost just a few dollars and have two major advantages to using one of your briar pipes for testing. First, they do not add any flavor to the tobacco, so what you are tasting is completely the flavor of the blend. Second, the tobacco isn’t adding anything to the briar of your pipe. You wouldn’t want to be tasting a particularly strong tobacco you didn’t like every time you light your favorite pipe for months to come!
Disadvantages of cheap smoking pipes
Of course, most inexpensive tobacco pipes are not made of quality briar. That means they are not going to add the same depth of flavor to your smoking experience. We don’t generally recommend using a cheap pipe for the long term. That said, we know a few veteran smokers who would heartily disagree, preferring corn cobs above all other tobacco pipes.
Cheap Pipe, expensive pipe: It’s all relative
Determining whether or not a particular pipe is cheap or expensive is pretty subjective. For some of our customers a $100 Peterson pipe is a large investment; while for others, this is an affordable everyday pipe and a more expensive purchase is in the $500 plus range, like a Vauen Purisme.
Determine what a cheap smoking pipe means for your budget and then keep a few of them around for the occasional high-hazard experiences where you want to enjoy a bowl without worrying about losing something you’ve invested heavily in.