Tuesday, July 14, 2009

How to Light a Pipe with a Liquid Fuel Pipe Lighter

By Dave Sabot

Lighting a pipe, and packing it beforehand, are part of the overall pipe-smoking experience. While the tobacco itself does provide a great deal of pleasure, a lot of what makes a pipe so relaxing is the entire ritual. There are several steps involved in getting just the right combination of packing, lighting and smoking the pipe.

One starts by making certain the tobacco they add to the pipe is free of any clumps. This might take a while and it's best done by laying out the tobacco on a flat surface beforehand. This process ensures that the tobacco combusts evenly and that one gets the best possible experience from the smoke. Take some time, clean the tobacco of any clumps or other matter and pack it lightly in the bowl.

Some individuals are sensitive to the taste of lighter fluid in the first few puffs. While many smokers don't notice it at all, some of the higher-end lighter fluids advertise that they impart no flavor to the smoke during the lighting process. If one happens to detect a bit of fuel taste while lighting the pipe, switching fluid brands will likely alleviate this problem. Again, this is a matter of personal preference. Fuel should always be of a high quality simply to preserve the lighter and to ensure a reliable light.

Lighting the pipe is a two-stage process. After cleaning the tobacco of any clumps, one packs the bowl halfway, tamps it down and tests for an easy draw. The bowl is then packed to the rim and tamped down so that it is level with the top of the bowl.

The first lighting is to eliminate any moisture. Don't set the tobacco burning, just puff a few times until the tobacco fluffs up. After the bowl is tamped down again and tested for an easy draw, hold the lighter above the tobacco and puff a few times until the tobacco achieves a nice, cool burn. When the pipe is properly-lit, the tobacco can burn for a long time and the smoke will be cool and mellow. Fluid-filled lighters can provide years of service and many of them come with attachments specifically for tamping and cleaning the pipe.

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