Tinder Box International gets questions from time to time about our stores and our products. We even have pipe and cigar smokers send us photos of their memorabilia or a pipe they bought from one of our stores in 1973. Here are some frequently asked questions we do get.
Question: I have a pipe I bought from one of your stores and my dog has chewed up the stem. Do you or your stores sell replacement stems?
Answer: All Tinder Box stores have a pipe repair service they use. Since all pipe stems are different, a new stem must be custom fitted to the shank and bowl. This requires the pipe to be sent out to a pipe repairman. While another stem might look like it will fit, it will not. This service takes usually a week to ten days and the cost depends on the service and type of stem needed. If the pipe is an Ascorti pipe, and you desire the exact replacement Lucite stem with the Ascorti logo, it must be sent back to Italy for repair.
Question: The Tinder Box shop in my local mall has closed after 30 years. What happened?
Answer: Stores close for various reasons. Since mostly all of our stores are franchised, chances are the franchisee retired. You can visit our Find a Store page to locate another store close to you. All of our stores do mail order and many have their own web site. You can find all that information from this page.
Question: I just bought an old tobacco tin off of eBay and it says Tinder Box on the label. What do I have?
Answer: Send us a photo and we will identify the item for you and tell you exactly what circa it is. In some cases if it was pictured in any old catalogs, we can scan that catalog page for you and send the pdf to you for identification help.
Question: Can you send me a current catalog?
Answer: In keeping with going green, Tinder Box International no longer produces a paper catalog.
Question: I am looking for a cigar you used to carry back in 1975 called Vencedor. Is it still made?
Answer: Unfortunately, no. The Vencedor was a fabulous cigar made in the Canary Islands with a simply scrumptious African Cameroon Wrapper. When the Spanish government nationalized all the cigar factories, the Vencedor cigar as we knew it ceased to exist.
Question: I have bought cigars in my local Tinder Box, but their prices are so much higher than from Internet cigar sellers online. What gives?
Answer: The difference in prices can be attributed to OTP (Other Tobacco Products) Taxes levied on products other than cigarettes by states. (Cigarette taxes are a completely separate and different tax.) These taxes range from just a few cents per cigar or pound of tobacco to as high as 92% on the wholesale price. You can download a pdf of these amounts here. This information is current as of April 1, 2010. WIth pending legislation in many states, these rates could change without notice. Remember, just because the out of state company you buy from does not charge you either sales or OTP taxes, does not mean you do not have to pay them. In most states, you are responsible to report and pay all use taxes on out of state purchases. Remember too, when you purchase from your local tobacconist, the taxes levied on their products go to your state.
Question: My cigar lighter is broken. Do your stores repair lighters?
Answer: Beyond just making sure a lighter is clean and has butane and flint if applicable, we do not repair lighters. We will help assist you in returning your lighter to the manufacturer for service.
Question: I live in Australia. Do you ship internationally?
Answer: Many of our stores do ship internationally, depending on the legality of shipping tobacco products into the country of residence. We can help you locate a store who does so.
Question: My grandpa used to purchase his tobacco at the local drug store and now they no longer carry it. Do you carry tobaccos like Prince Albert or Borkum Riff?
Answer: Some of our stores stock commercial tobaccos if they are still being manufactured. If they do not and if the tobacco is still available, they can possibly place a special order for you. We invite you to stop by our store with your grandpa to also see what tobaccos on our tobacco bar he might like that would be similar to what he smokes now.
Question: I used to buy Emmett Kelly Clowns and collector plates at my local Tinder Box in the mall. They have stopped carrying products like that. Where can I find them now?
Answer: Back before the days of eBay, our stores were heavily involved with gifts and collectibles. Over the past several years, overall consumer interest has waned in those types of products and many of our stores have relocated from the mall to different locations. If a store was once a dealer in those items, they can still help you locate a new dealer if the company is still in business.