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Well it is handmade...

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  #1  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:10 PM
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Default Well it is handmade...

I grow tired of threads with KMs with tons of messy welds, dents, bends and other ascetically ugly mistakes, with new owners confused as to why this 'tip top' brand is selling these stylishly hideous hookahs. Sure it's handmade, but does that really justify poor quality?
"But if it smokes well why should you complain?" Because I don't have a talking taco that walks around crapping money and I expect more money to be directly proportional to more quality.
"Don't get a KM then" It's hard to not believe what others say after hearing it hundreds of times. Whenever a thread comes up about "what hookah should I get/How long will this one last" They always have numerous responses spouting KM quality and pride.
Sorry for the rant it is just getting annoying seeing these posts about handmade quality. I just thought artisans of the craft would have higher standards, and I bet Santino(Crownhookahs) does not send out bowls that are not level, or mouth tips that aren't straight (besides the ones that are supposed to be curved :X)
Also I love my KM, even it it isn't perfect.
/rant
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  #2  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:22 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

My KM has some bad flaws... More than normal. But I'm still happy with it.

The part where they electroplated the middle, it's copper over brass I believe, there's a large patch where they didn't bother finishing or something. There's other flaws too but that one really annoys me.

Anyway, I'd love it if the flaws were minimal but hey, KM's are fairly cheap and I don't wanna have to pay a fortune for a KM.
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  #3  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:24 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

you're right, there's no excuse for something being crappy because it's handmade. Now you can't be rights expect the consistancy of a machined product but sloppy welds are understandably something to complain about. For this reason I have a very hard time buying pipes off the internet because you can't inspect it. The best I can say is if a pipe comes in in-excusably messy then send it back and request a replacement. Vendors should also check their wears before they send them out to save the consumer this process and get on the manufacturer if there are too many sloppy pieces.
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  #4  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:29 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Hmm, my KM has some flaws but I barely notice them. I guess it all comes down to what is meant by 'quality'. If quality means that it smokes great (which virtually all KM's do), then I'd say they're top quality. But if 'quality' means the precision of the aesthetic pieces, well I don't think it's quite so simple.

Part of the artistic charm of the KM hookahs are the aesthetic flaws. Or, at least it is for me. If I was first concerned with it being perfect, I'd get something that was mass produced. But personally, I enjoy looking at and finding the imperfections. In a weird way, it sort of makes me feel connected to the person who made the flaws.

Perhaps that's not an entirely satisfying answer. That's alright. All I know is that I'm absolutely love my KM and not simply because of the hype surrounding them.
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  #5  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:36 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

i agree with bpetruzzo,
and if i wanted a hookah that looked exactly like someone elses, i wouldn't have gotten a KM.
mine had some pretty weird flaws, like my purge valve is sealed off. i got no purge.
but its still the best hookah i've ever had and its amazing.
i'm also relly interested in one of the al fakher hookahs.
those are much more clean looking, and not as rough around the edges, and i hear they smoke really well.

so honestly, i love my km, flaws and all.
hahahaha
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  #6  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:37 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

if you want an over priced pretty machine pressed hookah get and ed hardy hookah. if you want something that is handmade prob by some guy that is smoking a hookah while he makes one get a KM.
I love my KM with all of its flaws, it means there all different then any other one on the maker. it is unique and one of a kind. it smokes great.. and well if that sums it up i think its perfect the way it is. wouldnt change it for the world
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  #7  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:56 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

I agree that because KMs are hand made, they have some flaws on them because the process they go through but when you find dings and dents in your KM when you recieve them then I believe the buyer has a right to question them.

My KMs have welding problems (most common problem) then I think its acceptable but with dents and that then I would question the quality. But thats all down to the buyer, wether he/she would like to complain because these dents could have arised through shipping or not being well packaged.

Its all down to personal experiances IMO
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  #8  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 06:19 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Quote:
Originally Posted by bpetruzzo View Post
Hmm, my KM has some flaws but I barely notice them. I guess it all comes down to what is meant by 'quality'. If quality means that it smokes great (which virtually all KM's do), then I'd say they're top quality. But if 'quality' means the precision of the aesthetic pieces, well I don't think it's quite so simple.

Part of the artistic charm of the KM hookahs are the aesthetic flaws. Or, at least it is for me. If I was first concerned with it being perfect, I'd get something that was mass produced. But personally, I enjoy looking at and finding the imperfections. In a weird way, it sort of makes me feel connected to the person who made the flaws.

Perhaps that's not an entirely satisfying answer. That's alright. All I know is that I'm absolutely love my KM and not simply because of the hype surrounding them.
Agreed
Ive found a few imperfections in my KM that were like um not cool but it makes you appreciate it for what it truely is when you ssmoke it
I love my baby and will smoke it til I cant weld it back together
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  #9  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 06:40 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Amen to the OP.

Had the same issue with my KM. Ultimately if we, the community, do not stop buying them, they will continue to produce crap. I do not care if it smokes like an old wood burning steam train. If it looks like it went through a batting practice before you got it, what is the point?

Can I ignore the flaws? Sure
Does it smoke great? Positively
Do I get annoyed every time I look at my massive dents in the side? Most definitely!

Batters up!
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  #10  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 06:52 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

I agree with the hand made aspect that the imperfections give it charecter. Would i look past a while bunch of DENTS in the hookah from straight mishandling? No F"N way i would. If you I am paying top dollar for a hookah. Me personally i would expect it to not have the welding or leak issues that i have seen people complain about. The looks of it i wouldnt think are that important, as far as extra welding pieces dropped on it or solder in strange places. On the other side of that though, welding issues or leaks IMHO is something that shouldnt be tolerated.

Last edited by Hayter; March 3rd, 2010 at 06:55 PM.
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  #11  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 07:17 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Hmm. Dents and scratches are different than welding and construction imperfections. But I think this comes from being one of the larger pipe exporters. And it almost definitely happens during the shipping/handling process (I've seen the way the massive shipments come in at my local shop). I'd bet that if you went and sifted through your local shop, you'd find lots of similar problems with no-name pipes, but there's no one to criticize cause we don't know what they are.

I suspect that the vast majority of KM pipes are dent and scratch free. But since it's such a popular brand, some of us are bound to get damaged ones. Kind of like how iPods are awesome, but there are bound to be a few DOA. And yeah, if I got one of those, I'd probably ask for a replacement.
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  #12  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 08:43 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

I am more than happy with my KM. Maybe I am lucky or something, but mine does not have any flaws in it. Thanks John!
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  #13  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

there is definitely a skewed standard when it comes to handmade. it's just a chance you've gotta take.
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  #14  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 08:52 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

But see to me, I honestly would rather have dents and screatches then leaks and solder issues. However, like i stated if i am going to spend that much money on a hookah. Especially from what i am hearing now, that the MZ's have just as good quality in the smoke ability but lack the dents and leaks. Then KM should start improving their manufacturing practices and quality control. Cause sooner or later they will lose their popularity. Just my opinions though.
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  #15  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 09:09 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRMALIKIA View Post
. Ultimately if we, the community, do not stop buying them, they will continue to produce crap. I do not care if it smokes like an old wood burning steam train. If it looks like it went through a batting practice before you got it, what is the point?
!
DRMALIKIA makes some valid points here. But its not just us as the consumer that should be considered, what about the vendor that ships the crappy looking hookah to the customer in the first place? When you buy a new car the dealer doesnt sell it to you dented and scratched or screwed up in some clearly visible way do they? What about the vendor? Do they just look at your order and grab a box and throw it in another box to ship? If so you cant tell me they shouldnt be at fault for also providing damaged goods.
You are paying them for a hookah that looks nice on their website, why should they send you something that is far uglier than you expected?
Blame should be equally pointed at the vendor not just the producer or the consumer.
my 2cents
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  #16  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 09:28 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Quote:
Originally Posted by bpetruzzo View Post
Hmm, my KM has some flaws but I barely notice them. I guess it all comes down to what is meant by 'quality'. If quality means that it smokes great (which virtually all KM's do), then I'd say they're top quality. But if 'quality' means the precision of the aesthetic pieces, well I don't think it's quite so simple.

Part of the artistic charm of the KM hookahs are the aesthetic flaws. Or, at least it is for me. If I was first concerned with it being perfect, I'd get something that was mass produced. But personally, I enjoy looking at and finding the imperfections. In a weird way, it sort of makes me feel connected to the person who made the flaws.

Perhaps that's not an entirely satisfying answer. That's alright. All I know is that I'm absolutely love my KM and not simply because of the hype surrounding them.
I agree, it's all part of what makes your particular KM unique. They all smoke amazingly well.
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  #17  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 09:46 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Keep in mind the price at which you are buying. A handmade pipe of exacting precision would likely cost up into the $400-$500 range. When you buy a KM you're getting a handmade product for less than half of that, and yes, there are aesthetic flaws, but the quality is there where it counts, because they smoke like no other.

Fact is Khalil Mamoon produces hundreds, maybe thousands of pipes a month and all of them are functional, if flawed, works of art.
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  #18  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 10:30 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

I def agree the imperfections in welds make kms I love the weld marks on my km sobek ice
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  #19  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuMMuS View Post
if you want an over priced pretty machine pressed hookah get and ed hardy hookah. if you want something that is handmade prob by some guy that is smoking a hookah while he makes one get a KM.
I love my KM with all of its flaws, it means there all different then any other one on the maker. it is unique and one of a kind. it smokes great.. and well if that sums it up i think its perfect the way it is. wouldnt change it for the world
Extrapolation much? That's not even quality for the money spent.

Edit: It seems like a lot of the interpretation was that I expect an immaculate protect. I don't expect a perfect looking hookah or one that looks like all the others, I just prefer not seeing spot of melted solder on my hookah, mismatched band alignment. Hell there is even an incomplete design on mine. It is just frustrating to me that poor quality can be so easily justified by "hand made quality". Before I got into hookahs (ie before I was 18) I associated the term handmade with something that was made with precision, and as clean as humanly possible; basically top notch stuff with endearing imperfections. Flaws are to be expected as people cannot create objects with the same ability as a machine.
Another occurrence in this thread seems to be that I am looking for machine made products when really I have always preferred handmade quality. I just feel like the people at KM are sloppy, meaning they don't seem to have a concern whether or not they've made a mistake.
Argh I don't know I'm just ranting.
Lastly I hope you read that with a calm narration as I am not angry nor am I trying to project being hostile towards anyone.
In reality I am just disappointed.

Last edited by Scarcity; March 3rd, 2010 at 10:59 PM. Reason: readrestofthread
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  #20  
Old March 3rd, 2010, 11:09 PM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

One of my favorite pipes is my mini-wheat Temsah. There are some huge and very visible soldering marks on the different sections of the pipe, but the stem is solid(to the extent that if I were smoking alone in a dimly lit section of the Fens I feel confident that I could use it in self defense) and the etchings on it are exactly what I was expecting and looking for. I did go into this knowing there were some very obvious soldering marks(thanks to KillerB's review video) so it was fair for me. If I received a pipe that had dents on the stem I would have been much more dismayed about this. Solder marks are much less irksome to me than dent's would be simply because the dents are a result of poor handling from the exporter(primarily) and could be avoided if the exporter were either more careful or more discerning with their quality control. I don't think I could fault the US vendor with these faults because for the large part these were not a result on their end and rather than marking them as dead assets they still have to turn a profit on their shipment. It sucks but we're on the very end of the stick of people who have to deal with these issues and although we already pay a premium for imported pipes, there would be another mark up if these rigs were discarded. I have yet to receive a pipe that wasn't to my standard so my experience is very limited.
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  #21  
Old March 4th, 2010, 12:26 AM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarcity View Post
Extrapolation much? That's not even quality for the money spent.

Edit: It seems like a lot of the interpretation was that I expect an immaculate protect. I don't expect a perfect looking hookah or one that looks like all the others, I just prefer not seeing spot of melted solder on my hookah, mismatched band alignment. Hell there is even an incomplete design on mine. It is just frustrating to me that poor quality can be so easily justified by "hand made quality". Before I got into hookahs (ie before I was 18) I associated the term handmade with something that was made with precision, and as clean as humanly possible; basically top notch stuff with endearing imperfections. Flaws are to be expected as people cannot create objects with the same ability as a machine.
Another occurrence in this thread seems to be that I am looking for machine made products when really I have always preferred handmade quality. I just feel like the people at KM are sloppy, meaning they don't seem to have a concern whether or not they've made a mistake.
Argh I don't know I'm just ranting.
Lastly I hope you read that with a calm narration as I am not angry nor am I trying to project being hostile towards anyone.
In reality I am just disappointed.
I hear ya. But again, I think that you might've gotten the one in a hundred that have some flaws that people would consider unacceptable. All of the KM's in my circle of local smokers are near perfect. In an online forum like this one, I think that when people hear of imperfections, they probably explain them away as handmade because they can't actually see them. And, with all KM's having some imperfections, most of the people who got problem hookahs are just more 'okay' with it in the name of 'handmade art', when if fact what they got probably shouldn't have been shipped. I suspect that most of us have pipes that are close to perfect, but with a few imperfections. But there's always going to be a few and it could be that you got one of the ones that perhaps better quality control should have caught.

KM makes some really beautiful pipes. But it may be that as a company they have some not-so-great business practices. I don't really know.

What I do know, however, is that when I browse the hookahs on our different vendor's sites, I almost never see hookahs that I find as aesthetically impressive as the ones offered by KM. So, I think that's something to be considered too.
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  #22  
Old March 4th, 2010, 12:36 AM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

I think it's all about ratio when it comes to the inperfections/carfting marks/individuality. Are a few tiny weld marks ok? Sure, there kind of like hookah birth marks. Is a loppy bowl a problem? Hmm not really, I guess I can get a new bowl. Is denting a problem? I mean I guess it still smokes ok heh... heh... heh? I've never heard of the electroplating problem that was brought up (but I also don't own every km on the planet) in this thread but for me personally, if I got a new hookah, that I paid a bill fifty for, on the trust that I would be sent something that looked almost exactly like it did in the tiny picture on the screen and got something with multiple problems I wouldn't be super happy about it. And yes, depending on how many "marks" I would even think of sending it back.
Some people wouldn't think of sending something back thinking that no matter how "diffrent" their hookah is, it's still theirs and they are completly right in that respect. But there are alot of folks that I believe want to buy a hookah that yes is individual, but is also without a good deal of smudges.
For me on a personal level some weld marks are good. It is a sign of hand crafting and you can see in any ring where antique items are sold, things that have craft marks can fetch large amounts of cash because they are in a sence, one of a kinds. But, as I said, if I got a hookah with dents, electro plating mistakes, weld marks, a craked base or any real combinatrion of those I would be less than excited. And it would reflect on more than just "oh some hookah crafter made this by hand" to "he must have had a long night cause this looks like it got droped right off the stable"

On a side note... do AF hookahs have any of these same problems that run with the km's, and what do you think is the reason when the two are put side by side in a pepsi challange the km wins 90% of the time.
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  #23  
Old March 4th, 2010, 03:00 AM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

i dont know, the way i look at it is if they took every little second to make it perfectly detailed, there wouldn't be as many KM's out on the market. Meaning they would be pretty scarce. Which would then mean they would cost like $500.
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Old March 4th, 2010, 03:12 AM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

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i dont know, the way i look at it is if they took every little second to make it perfectly detailed, there wouldn't be as many KM's out on the market. Meaning they would be pretty scarce. Which would then mean they would cost like $500.
That's exactly it.

Anyone who has done metalworking knows the most tedious, time-consuming part of smithery is finishing and cleaning. Time is money. In order to meet consumer demand and keep their pipes at an affordable level, KM has to cut corners somewhere. So naturally they would do it on a part of the pipe that would affect looks rather than functionality.

Kinda the opposite of what the Chinese manufacturers do, actually.
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  #25  
Old March 4th, 2010, 10:01 AM
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Default Re: Well it is handmade...

Lets not mistake shitty craftsmanship and a clear lack of quality control for something its not. The dents, scratches, bad bowls, bad vases, bad plating, are not done on purpose or with the intent to act character of "uniqueness/individuality" to the pipe. They are there as a reminder to you, that your pipe was rushed by worker who is most likely pressured to make as many pipes as he can within his shift. So we are talking about low standards of work, low standards of a finished product, and most likely exploited workers.

Think about that when you decide to name the dents and mishaps on your pipe a sign of individuality.
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