Whole Leaf Tobacco

FX Smith's Sons

MarcL

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I thought he said somewhere they downsized a little or something. can't find it at the moment.. he seems to be asleep at the wheel tonight. I'm sticking to my de-regulatory prediction myself to come around.
 

webmost

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Sounds like they closed the FX Smith's Sons factory in the US. At their "consolidated" website, www.fxsmithssonscigars.com, they appear to still have considerable inventory.

Bob

Yes. They stacked up enough inventory to last a three month transition. All machinery and baccy are being shipped to the DR this month. The plan is to have the lines back in operation by February. The old factory will be just a distribution center. Getting the baccy there is not tough. How to get the product back here... that still remains to be solved. So one more American enterprise falls victim to the Supreme Benevolent State. The example stories I have heard would curl your toes, blue your expletives, and get us all banned from the forum for political discussion. One excessive bureaucratic absurdity after another. FDA and OSHA, a host of taxing authorities, and the straw which all alone might have broken the camel's back: Obamacare. Smith tells me ten years ago the cost of labor per thousand gars was $40 -- now it tops $400.

Pennsylvania used to make a whole host of things. Now it's all dreary little ghost mill towns where hopeless factory layoffs eke by on food stamps, and their children all move away.

You cannot bullschidt the numbers for long. Sooner or later, the bill comes due.
 

OldDinosaurWesH

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This is all sounding familiar. We used to have an Asparagus cannery in my home town. The owners stripped the buildings of all the machinery and sent it to Peru.

In this specific case, the owners were given incentive (read $) from none other than our Uncle Sam. All this was done to try to stem the flow of Cocaine into the US. The idea was to give the farmers in Peru something else to grow besides the coca leaf. I don't know if this has stemmed any drug flow, but it sure killed off a lot of family wage American jobs. Incidentally, if you buy off-season fresh Asparagus in the store, check the label. It was probably grown in Peru...and subsidized by the American taxpayer.

Wes H.
 

webmost

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Too bad you couldn't snag a "leftover" cigar rolling machine for your garage.

Bob
Takes two trained gals to operate one machine, plus someone operating the stripper, plus a fellow feeding blend to the machinery, plus a blender in the basement, plus an experienced mechanic with a crap-pile of spare parts. Not to mention a rack of aging boxes, a band wrapper, a cello sleever, a head puncher, a boxer, a shrink wrapper...

And even then: what would I do with the 6,000 cigars it makes per shift? One shift, I'm set for a lifetime of smoke.

Finally: That machine will still be feeding working families ... just not American families.

At this point, as a society, we have our heads so far up where the sun don't shine, and our grand-children in no way prepared to live in the third world misery we're dooming them to... but I better leave off right here or Bob will feel compelled to pretend again that politics will all go away if we just don't talk about it.

All my Christmas* gifts are coming from China. Yours?






________________________
* I refuse to say Holiday ... it's a man's birthday, for Gaia's sake.
 

deluxestogie

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I just noticed that FX Smith Tuscarora cigars are available at JR Cigars: https://www.jrcigars.com/brand/tuscarora

These are a line of machine-made cigars using CT broadleaf wrappers and CT broadleaf binders, with short filler. They are, in fact the cigars that FX Smith made for decades on behalf of Connecticut Muniemaker. The latter company went out of business, but FX Smith has continued to make them, though they had to change the name of the line. They come in boxes of 50, but cost only between $1.45 to $1.75 per stick. They would be considered mild-to-medium in todays market.

Bob

EDIT: I just noticed that only the Breva (CT Broadleaf maduro wrapper) is currently in-stock. Perhaps these too are all going the way of the dodo.
 

Knucklehead

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I received my three samplers from FX Smith yesterday and currently smoking a Tuscarora from the Oscuro sampler. It a nice smoke with mild flavor. I can inhale it just fine (I’m a cigarette smoker and forget not to inhale). It draws wells, tastes good, and I can set it and forget it for awhile and it’s still smoldering without have to relight. Overall, I’m thoroughly satisfied with it.
Watching the tracking from USPS was interesting. It went from Penn. to Florida, back to Penn, back to Florida where it stated out for delivery. I thought that’s fine except I don’t live in Florida. So next day I saw that it was on its way to the next destination and I thought that was fine as long as the next destination was Alabama. Turns out it was and I got it the following day. It’s a wonder our postal service isn’t losing money. Their fuel costs must be rather excessive.

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deluxestogie

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What a delightful surprise arrived today. @FmGrowit apparently read my pitiful reminiscences about the now extinct Muniemaker Connecticut Valley cigars (manufactured by FX Smith), and my reservations about whether or not to purchase a box of them. So he sent me this box of 50 maduro cigars. Thank you Don! What a hoot! Tuscarora is FX Smith's new frontmark for the same cigars.

I'm smoking one as I type this. They have always been machine made. Now the machines are running on Dominican electricity. Draw is good. Initial aroma is as I recall them. I was hesitant to purchase them, because the Dominican-made versions contain some mystery proportion of Dominican leaf. But they really do taste and smell like the dark, wood and leather of Pennsylvania and Connecticut broadleaf cigars--strictly American traditional. The burn is as good as any cigar you'll find anywhere, and the ash is holding up, despite an oscillating fan only two feet away. The strength is medium. This is a cigar to grab whenever you just want a decent smoke, rather than a wine tasting. Overall, my rating of them is "pretty good", and surprisingly faithful to their predecessor. For their price, they are better made and better smoking than the cheap short-filler bundles from the big on-line cigar vendors, and are miles ahead of any of the surviving "drug store" cigars.

Now, about that box of 50. All cigars used to come in boxes of 50. When I first converted my antique, walnut wash stand into a humidor (during the early 1970s), it could easily fit six or eight of various 50-cigar boxes. As a sign of how long it's been since I saw a real box of 50 cigars, I was uncertain if it would fit in my humidor. (Unconsciously I knew it would, but consciously the size seemed daunting.)

Bob
 
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