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of archived articles. Look at the Subject Index – you’re sure to find an answer to some of your questions, maybe some you didn’t even know you had!
Click here for some thoughts.
Savinelli “Gaius” pipe on offer from March 26 – April 8
From 7 April, 2020 25% off 73-J6501 Slim black Digital Hygrometer/Thermometer


Man Cave

You may have been spending loads of time in your
'Man Cave' during lockdown!

Now why not visit our 'Man Cave'?
There are plenty of reasons to do so

We offer a wide range of gifts for everybody
with a focus on men’s gifts

All (except tobacco and related products) can be ordered via email

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See the extensive list of 'Man Cave' products below (items suitable for ladies too)


Father’s Day is just around the corner

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Backgammon, Chess, Draughts/Checkers, Dominoes,
Men’s Grooming products – Taylors Shaving Creams, Taylors Aftershave, Razors, Shaving brushes & Gift Sets
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Tobacco Sales are still not allowed

Government Gazette Level 4 restrictions Chapter 3, No.27 states that the sale of tobacco,
tobacco products, e-cigarettes and related products is prohibited.
As a result:

  • Wesley’s Rosebank will not be open.
  • Online sales are now permitted with the exception of tobacco related products.
  • Couriers may not deliver tobacco and related products.

We understand that this is inconvenient for you.
Please accept that we can do nothing at all about it, even though it’s bad for us too.
We’d love to be of service once the lockdown has lifted

Colin Wesley


Colin Wesley - always ready to chat .... across the counter!During this unprecedented time,
“Across the Counter” blog posts and two specials will run concurrently,
and are addressed to both our Pipe and Cigar Smokers

Please note that the office is still operating and orders can be taken,
though no deliveries/collections are possible until after lockdown

Take care and stay safe

pipePipe Smokers

Savinelli – the perfectionist pipe maker in Italy

Imagination knows no bounds
Quality knows no bounds.

There are 21 steps, in one flight, up to the showroom in the Savinelli building outside Milan.
I counted them.
That’s what one does when one has a troublesome back and you are challenged by a steep staircase: you count off the steps one by one until you reach the top with a “got you” feeling inside.
And it’s worth it!

The Savinelli team were waiting for us, and after greetings, an Espresso and a glass of water, we sat down to talk “pipe” with our friends, face to face, a good feeling.

Over the years we look forward to these meetings – what will Savinelli have in store this year?
We have come to accept, and trust, that whatever innovations Savinelli introduces will not compromise the fundamentals for producing pipes that will offer a cool, dry, smoke.
The ultimate objective for all pipe makers!

This doesn’t mean that we see the same things year after year.
On the contrary we have been impressed by the innovations introduced in the finishing of the outside of the bowls, the colours and embellishments with the mouthpieces and in some cases the “flavouring” of the bowl; Miele for example (continually popular).

This time it was the “Gaius”

“Gaius” (guy-us) is a Latin praenomen, or personal name, and was one of the most common names throughout Roman history. The feminine form is Gaia.[1] The praenomen was used by both patrician and plebeian families, and gave rise to the patronymic gens Gavia.
Gaius Marius (born 157 BC) was a Roman general and statesman who held the office of consul an unprecedented seven times during his career. He was also noted for his important reforms of Roman armies. Wikipedia
One of Paul’s traveling companions during his third missionary journey was named Gaius. Luke identifies him as a Macedonian.
Gaius was a Jurist who died 180AD (Books: Institute)

Gaius could be considered a fundamental Roman.

A Gaius pipe is a pipe, as a man was a man in Roman times: the essence. 

The Gaius pipes are offered in bold Kingsize shapes, all finished in the same pebble rusticated black with burgundy glint highlights, and polished rim.
The striking feature is the military style mount fitted over the shank, which to me emphasizes the manly element in the overall impression created by each pipe.

Just to hold one inspires in you the feel of the underlying strength of the Roman Empire at its height.

And if that was not enough, we were offered the pipes at a 19% discount off the Euro price.
These pipes which should retail for R1995.00 landed to sell for R1650.00.

See the shapes below

They are stunning pipes!
I'm sure you'll agree

If so, now is the time to take advantage:

On offer from March 26 until 2 weeks
after the lockdown is lifted

Savinelli “Gaius” pipe

(R1650.00 less 25%)

Another advantage:
The strength of the Military Mount will prevent swelling or cracking if the pipe is smoked without the 6mm balsa filter or the 6mm adapter, supplied with each pipe. (You’ll find the adapter in with the balsa pieces.)

Whenever you choose a Savinelli, you are getting a quality pipe, tailored for your smoking pleasure.
You are sure to enjoy it.

Colin Wesley

No.474 March 19 – April 1, 2020

The New Pipe
“It’s like meeting a new friend and getting acquainted by relaxing together.”
Rick Hacker - The Ultimate Pipe Book

cigarCigar Smokers

“I enjoy a good cigar.”

I am not a gardener by any stretch of the imagination, however I appreciate a nice, neat colourful garden.
So, once a week a weeder and sweeper man arrives and does what’s necessary.
Then, once a year the pruners arrive and clip and cut their way among the roses and the fruit trees.
This is followed by the compost and watering, etc. throughout the year.
As a result of their efforts we have a peaceful garden in which to enjoy a good cigar.
All this reminds me of a poem I learned in Prep School:
"Our England is a garden, and such gardens are not made
By singing:—"Oh, how beautiful!" and sitting in the shade..."

~Rudyard Kipling

Why am I saying this?
Well, much the same can relate to saying “I enjoy a good cigar”, but not doing anything to check whether the cigars are kept in the best surroundings to achieve and maintain their good condition.

Winter is around the corner, and for many parts of our country it spells out dry air.
This can be bad news for your cigars if you do not check the condition of your humidor or storage space.
And if you are at home in isolation this is a good time to do this.

The relative humidity should be around 70%, but feel the cigars. They will tell you more than the normal analogue (analog) hygrometer. If they are hardening up, losing their sponginess, and possibly cracking, they need more moisture.
Read more.
If you’re not too happy working by feel, buy yourself a digital hygrometer, which measures humidity and temperature.

If the inside of the humidor feels bone dry remove all the cigars and give it a wipe with a damp (not soaking wet) cloth. Allow the moisture to be absorbed before replacing the cigars.
Your digital hygrometer will tell you the true story.

Check the humidifier: is it filled, and are the holes clean? If you have a nano-bead humidifier, are the beads still swollen and opaque in colour? If not, submerge the humidifier in distilled water. If the beads don’t absorb the water the humidifier needs replacing.
When wet, the nano-beads will release moisture if the RH falls below 70%, and absorb moisture if the RH goes way above 70%. They should maintain a reasonably constant relative humidity no matter how often the humidor is opened. However, it always pays to check – your digital hygrometer will help.

Remember the 70:70 rule.

Once you have the humidity in the humidor under control check the general surrounding area. Winter is the time for heaters to be switched on, sunlight to be allowed in, and doors to be kept closed. Any of these, or a combination of these, can adversely affect your cigars.

If you are in that part of the country where the winters are cold and wet – you still have to worry about the temperature – make sure the cigars aren’t too warm.

Cigars don’t like heat!

Watchpoint: If you have more than twenty or thirty cigars in one humidor remember to rotate them occasionally.
Don’t suffocate those at the bottom.

Thought: The cost of a digital hygrometer is little more than the cost of 3 good cigars.

To help you possibly save more than 3 cigars we offer:

25% off 73-J6501
- the slim black Digital Hygrometer
Only from Wesley’s Shops and Website.

Due to the Lockdown situation, with no goods coming into South Africa, we are short of stock of these instruments. They are sitting in Europe waiting to be shipped!
If you email an order we will honour the discount when the stock arrives.

Ensure that the storage area is cool, and with good humidity your cigars will be a real joy to smoke throughout the winter season, and for the rest of the year.

Colin Wesley

No.475 April 2-15, 2020

"Whether in a box, case, in your hand or mouth, treat your cigar with care. Your pleasure depends on it."
Zino Davidoff

Savinelli Smoking Pipe – Gaius Range

Shape 101 is a "Chubby" version of the classic Billiard shape. Both the bowl and the shank have big dimensions giving the pipe a great solidity.



Savinelli Smoking Pipe – Gaius Range320, also known as “Author” shape, has an unmistakable style.
This half-bent model boasts one of the biggest bowls.
Its rounded shape and the absence of edges make the hold extremely pleasant.


Savinelli Smoking Pipe – Gaius Range


Shape 345 belongs to the brandy style, which takes its name from the likeness between the conical bowl and the classic brandy glass.


Savinelli Smoking Pipe – Gaius Range


The cylindrical, slightly conical bowl of Shape 628 rises elegantly.
The black tapered stem bend is less pronounced compared
to the standard bends.


Savinelli Smoking Pipe – Gaius Range


For a real handful look at Shape 641. The bowl shape is ideally suited to the full bent design for perfect balance.  - All the stock of this shape is now reserved


Savinelli Smoking Pipe – Gaius Range


Shape 645 has a spacious burning chamber.
The rounded slightly cone shape gives the pipe a very masculine aspect.


You can read previous articles from “Across the Counter” in The Archives Library.

Zippo Woodchuck Flame Brushed.Brass Reverse MahoganyReverse MahoganyReverse Mahogany



PS Have you seen the new Zippo Woodchuck lighters?
Zippo, in partnership with WOODCHUCK USA, and their Buy One. Plant One.® program, will plant one tree for every lighter sold. Consumers can use the special code in each box to learn where their trees are planted.



By law, no South African citizen, living in South Africa can buy a tobacco product via the internet or postal system.  In fact, you may not receive a tobacco product through the post.
In addition we may not receive payment through the internet for tobacco products.
We may only supply tobacco products within the trade – not to private individuals. The fine is substantial
Contact us for help in getting tobacco to your area.


Many places where normal smoking is not allowed also restrict the use of e-cigs.

“Snus” is the answer

The question is - What is Snus?

Use SnusJakobssons Snus

Subscribe to keep up to date with our fortnightly articles and specials.
These alternate between pipe and cigar smokers' interests. You can choose your preferences.
You will also be automatically be entered into our competition draw.

PS If you can’t visit a Wesley’s Bricks and Mortar, remember that
if you’re not completely happy with your mailsale choice, you can always return it for a full refund.

Refund Policy (Website customers - you’ll like this!)
Because we always guarantee our products – anything that isn’t completely to your satisfaction can be returned (in original condition and packaging) for a full refund.

NB. All prices on this site are in South African Rand (ZAR)
Currency Converter
Buying from outside South Africa

New Tobacco Control Legislation

        Prohibitions in respect of tobacco products

(5) (a)  No person shall sell, offer to sell, supply, distribute or buy any tobacco product through the postal services, the internet or any other electronic media.
      (b) The prohibition contained in paragraph (a) does not apply to any commercial communication between a tobacco manufacturer or importer and its trade partners, business partners, employees and shareholders.

Until we have obtained clarity on these points we have removed the “BUY NOW” option
from all pure tobacco products on the
If this affects you, please contact us regarding a stockist of these tobacco products in your area.


ALL IMAGES AND CONTENT © Colin Wesley 2020

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