Last revised August 31, 2023.Peterson Pipe Notes launched in late May of 2014 as a way to share the wealth of information about Kapp & Peterson and Peterson pipes that I knew even then would never make it into the The Peterson Pipe: The Story of Kapp & Peterson, the book which appeared five years later in 2019 and won a gold medal for best non-fiction first book from the Independent Publishers Association in 2020. A second printing, in paperback, was issued in January of 2022 and is available through Smokingpipes.com and Vermont Freehand.
At the center of the blog is the book, co-authored by myself and Peterson expert Gary Malmberg, who sells estates pipes on eBay as Second Hand Smokes. While the book and the blog sometimes overlap slightly, the book covers core information about the history, pipes and craftsmanship of Kapp & Peterson and I can’t recommend it too highly for those serious about the marque.
Topics. If the book is the absent hub at the center of the wheel, the posts may be thought of as the spokes, and seem to fall into the following areas:
- SHAPE GROUPS from System pipes to the A, B, D and others;
- LINES both new and old;
- SERIES like the Pipe of the Year and Christmas annuals;
- SPECIAL BULLETINS about the impending release of new pipes;
- HISTORY of K&P, including videos made by K&P;
- INTERVIEWS with Peterson crafts folk, management and enthusiasts;
- DIY information for those interested in restoration, maintenance and modification;
- FAMOUS PETERSON SMOKER PROFILES.
Albert Einstein and his Peterson De Luxe 12B
Subscribe. You can subscribe to the blog via email on the front page. I often know about impending Peterson new releases and by subscribing you can be among the first to know.
Photo courtesy Troy Lambrecht
Pete Shops & Sites. I have shopped at the retailers listed in the Pete Shops & Sites menu and can recommend them all without hesitation. For those living in the US, you’ll find some amazing Petes at the smaller European sites that are either unavailable in the US or no longer in production. All the foreign sites will respond in English to your queries. They all ship with DHL or other quick-service shippers. When in doubt, don’t buy, and when buying, don’t buy if a vendor is shipping via their country’s postal service unless you are prepared to waited several weeks.
eBAY UK–NO WAY?
Avoiding Unnecessary Grief with eBay UK’s Global Shipping Program (rev. Dec. 2023).
It’s been over two years now since everyone first learned of eBay UK’s decision to label tobacco pipes as drug paraphernalia. Big Business and the Nanny State have partnered quite effectively here and as a Pete Geek, you’re entitled to know the kind of risk you take by bidding on the UK site. Brian 500s, CPG, has dealt with this situation more than any other CPG and writes,
“Pitney Bowles is the international shipper that eBay is currently dealing with. I have lost 2 pipes that were both old Petes just like many of you. The second one I did not take well and spent a lot of time on the phone and emailing both Pitney and eBay. What they told me is a shipping company must have a special permit to ship any drug paraphernalia. Yes that is what I was told that our tobacco pipes are being considered for use of drugs. I said no one has ever smoked dope in a Pete. They said they don’t have time to decide which are and which aren’t. Once they have received a seller’s pipe for Global Shipping it isn’t destroyed. It goes up for auction! I know this because I have seen pipes that were bought back on eBay in a very short time and even one of mine made that trip.
So what do we do? If the seller won’t use the Royal Mail or another shipper, DO NOT BID! I know this sucks, but I would rather see someone else get it than Pitney. Until eBay changes shippers I don’t see another way. I have tried asking eBay and individual shippers to use another company, but eBay could care less and almost none of the sellers will use Royal Mail or another shipper, because let’s face it: they’re going to get their money no matter what, and let’s face it that is really what all of this is about for them.”
Similar stories have poured forth from a half dozen Pete Geeks involving around 18 pipes–and that’s just those I’m aware of.
I would encourage every CPG, when he finds a pipe from the UK he wants to bid on, to first see if Royal Mail is a possible shipper. If not, then make a polite inquiry to ask if the seller is aware that eBay’s Global Shipping is confiscating tobacco pipes and reselling them and with that also asking if they would consider Royal Mail or another shipper. If they say “no,”–and this is my most important request–let them know that you’re part of a large consortium of worldwide pipe smokers and their eBay credentials will be made public as a seller who refuses to ethically ship overseas.
If you’re a UK eBay seller and already provide Royal Mail as an option, thanks so much! You are so appreciated as there are countless Peterson lovers across the globe who would gladly buy the pipes that the UK eBay site considers so dangerous. If you know other UK sellers, I hope you’ll let them know that valuable vintage pipes are being sold and then withheld from the bidder who spent a lot of time and energy trying to acquire the pipe. If you’ve never thought of what happens to your pipes when they leave your shop, I hope you’ll consider revising your listings to say in your descriptions that you understand this situation and of course you’ll ship to pipe smokers in the United States and elsewhere using Royal Mail or another service besides the Global Shipping Program.
Certified Pete Geeks. Companioners, collectors and consumers of Peterson pipes routinely refer to themselves as “Pete Geeks.” They are a very broad church, some interested in only the earliest Patent shapes, some in the current collectibles, some in the best bargains they can find on eBay. Some hate the P-Lip, others adore it. But all of them are passionate about it.
Readers are encouraged to comment to posts, especially where they find mistakes or can elaborate on information given in a post. I also welcome suggestions for future posts. This is not really a forum, however, so while I indulge a few Grouches and encourage honest criticism, as soon as I suspect a commentator is trolling, he will be blocked. PPN is a non-monetized blog encouraging the enjoyment of Peterson pipes and tobacco pipe smoking. I respect diversity of opinion but have little tolerance for ill-will against the pipes and none at all for such behavior toward others.
From time to time the blog offers opportunities to participate in a post and receive an honorary “C.P.G.” (Certified Pete Geek) designation and electronic certificate (suitable for downloading and display, of course) along with yearly “Merit Badges” pinned to the original electronic certificate and downloadable.
Questions. If you have questions about the blog, feel free to comment on this page or any of the blog posts. I’ll get back to you, normally the same day or within 24 hours. I moderate the comments section, so play friendly or leave the field.
“Why don’t you podcast or do a video blog on YouTube?” I not only get these questions from those in the hobby but have even been chastised by people from the industry side: “if you’d just do a video blog or podcast you might get some numbers and then we’d take you more seriously.” The disconnect deserves to be addressed. The most succinct answer I can give is found in a poem by philosophy professor Richard Polt:Technology can be a good servant, but it’s a demonic master. If you can’t read, then you haven’t advanced to the ranks of the Pete Geek “Thinking Man.” That’s not meant in arrogance or moral superiority, but pipe smoking and Peterson pipe smoking in particular reflect a rich, historically-aware heritage of men who think for themselves, men who are careful readers, men who resist the Control Agents at work in consumer capitalism, the global politics of war, exploitation of the environment, crimes against humanity, scientistic religion and the infinite herd mentalities of social media that go into making the unexamined life not only not worth living but spiritual death. Notice there are no ads on this blog and that I’m not in the payroll of Kapp & Peterson, Laudisi Enterprises or anybody else. The blog is here to celebrate what the Peterson pipe and, by extension, the tobacco pipe itself offers to the welfare and solace of men across the world (and any women who care to join us).
I have been deeply honored by endorsements from Kapp & Peterson and from Smokingpipes.com. The blog would not be what it is, nor would the Peterson book have been possible without the hospitality, patience and support K&P has given me over the years and currently extends me with the help of Sykes Wilford, CEO of Laudisi Enterprises, Josh Burgess, Managing Director of K&P and everyone at Kapp & Peterson and Laudisi (parent company of K&P). They provide background information, commercial photography, media kits and, just as important to me, friendship. I encourage you to support them whenever practical and possible.
(from Andy Wike, Top 10 Resources for Pipe Smokers, Smokingpipes.com, The Daily Reader)