Daily Archives: August 25, 2015

Refurbished KB&B Yello Bole Imperial Large Billiard

Yet another refurb by Troy that is stellar. If you have not visited his blog yet follow the links and have a look. He is doing a great job.

Baccy Pipes

Since my last  KB&B Yello Bole 07 Billiard ended up being a odd and unique prototype ( i know whoa is me ) i ended up looking for another for my regular smoking rotation. I really like the Kaywoodie/Yello Bole 07 shape and size of the classic billiard .Every one i own is a great smoking pipe and can be found for a song most of the time .To me its a American classic.

I was able to pick this pre 1955 Imperial 07 up. It looked like it was a good example and had very decent grain.

Other than a rim being banged up slightly and a few teeth marks on the button , it just needed a good cleaning and some elbow grease .

After a slight reaming and cleaning of the shank i put the stem in for a good soak in 91% alcohol .
I then…

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Crafting a Interior Shank Repair for a Cracked Shank Peterson Churchwarden

Blog by Steve Laug

A friend of mine stopped by with a pipe he wanted me to take a look at. It was a beautiful Peterson Churchwarden with a shapely long bent stem. The Dublin shaped bowl was perfect for this pipe. He showed me the issue – a cracked shank. Now that is typically an easy repair – just drill a pin hole at the end of the crack, glue and band the shank. But John being who he is does not like bands or bling on his pipes so he wanted me to see if I could band it from the inside! I thought it would be worth a try as I had done it before using a Delrin tube glued inside the shank to stabilize the cracks and then super glue into the cracked area and clamp until it sets. The issue with this crack was not as straight forward as the two photos below show. It was actually cracked in two places on the top of the shank – about a half-inch apart. The two cracks joined and if I had wanted to I could have removed a triangular piece of briar from the shank. The good news with this was that the joining of the two cracks had stopped the crack from going further up the shank so a repair would be straightforward.CW1

CW2 Now the challenge begins. I did not have any Delrin tenons that I could repurpose so I looked in my parts box and found the shank end of a replacement push tenon insert for meerschaum pipe repairs. Long ago I had used the stem end for something else and saved the shank insert knowing that one day I would be able to use it. Today was the day. I used my Dremel and sanding drum to sand off the edges of the thick end and to take down the threads on the insert. When I was finished sanding I had a rough surfaced tube insert that would sit in the shank of the Peterson with little effort.CW3 I opened the crack in the shank and put clear super glue into the opening. I pressed it together until it set. Then I coated the exterior of the tube with viscous super glue that was slow drying and pressed it into the shank. I set it aside to dry while I worked on the diameter of the tenon to reduce it enough to fit in the repaired shank. To me this is always the tricky part. I was sure I could take the tenon down some without weakening the strength of the tenon too much. With the size of the airway I only had one chance to get it right.CW4 When the insert was set, I used a drill bit and turned it into the shank to remove excess thickness and maximize the room for the tenon. I also used a knife to bevel the end of the tube insert and flare it to fit the bevel of the briar. I put the stem in place and the fit was good! I sanded the shank to clean up the repair glue. I sanded carefully around the nomenclature so as not to harm it but I wanted it to blend with the rest of the shank.CW5



CW8 Once I had the shank/stem fit the way I wanted it I stained it with a medium and dark stain pen to blend it in with the rest of the briar. I also scrubbed the rim with saliva and a cotton pad to remove the tars on the surface. I buffed the bowl with Blue Diamond and then gave the bowl several coats of carnauba wax.CW9

CW10 Though still visible on the exterior of the shank the crack is sealed and repaired. I worked on the stem to give it a polish. I sanded it with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12,000 grit pads. In between each set of three pads I rubbed the stem down with Obsidian Oil. After the final sanding with the 12,000 grit pad I let the oil soak into the vulcanite before buffing the stem with Blue Diamond.CW11


CW13 I buffed the stem with Blue Diamond polish on the wheel and then gave the bowl and stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I polished it with a clean flannel buff and then rubbed it down by hand with a microfibre cloth to give it a final shine. The finished pipe is shown below.CW14






Salvaging a Sorely Mistreated Brigham 3-Dot Acorn

I have always appreciated Brigham Pipes. I have restored a fair number of them. This one had a lot of challenges and it came out great.

Here is my latest pipe refurb project – a 1970’s vintage, Made in Canada, Brigham 3-Dot Acorn I found at a local antiques mall. I paid the princely sum of $14CAD for this poor old pipe. I have a soft spot for Brigham pipes – they were my Dad’s pipe of choice – so I hoped I could bring this one back to a useful, if not original, condition.


The pipe as purchased was in a sorry state. The previous owner obviously loved the pipe – it was well used – but by the same token obviously didn’t care about preserving the pipe. It was clearly the original owner’s habit to knock the dottle out of the pipe by bashing the rim against whatever object happened to be nearby – a brick wall? Concrete curb? Steel fence? In any case, most of the front right rim was significantly worn away…

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Refreshing a Whitehall Washington Park Zulu, with a Little Help From an Erstwhile Apprentice.

Great work and even better to have help with it. I was touched by the father daughter work on this one being a dad with four daughters it is always great to have them join in the work. Well done.

This restoration is a bit special for me, not for the pipe, but rather for the refurbishing apprentice I gained on this project – my daughter. Interested to know more about a subject that obviously captures my attention, my daughter asked if she could help with a refurb. Naturally, I gave her free pick of the pipes remaining in my box.

She selected this Whitehall Washington Park Zulu. It is the pipe second from the bottom on the far right of the picture of my recent estate lot purchase.

Estate Pipe Lot

It was in fair condition when received – dirty and grimy to the touch like all the other pipes in the lot, with tars on the rim, lost fills on the bowl, and uneven ridges on the front edge where the harder grain seems to have risen, giving the front a washboard texture and appearance. The stem suffered from oxidation and…

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Reviving a Savinelli Silver 806

Blog by Dave Gossett
Dave1 My Army cousin stationed in Italy came to the states recently bearing gifts. He bought me 9 pipes at a swap meet in Vencenza – 5 Savinelli’s, 2 Brebbia’s, 1 Rossi, and 1 lesser known Italian briar. I’m a sucker for silver bands, long shanks, and Sav’s, so naturally this is the first one out of the batch I cleaned up.

This one had not been “smoked lightly” as the saying goes. The rim was beat up, the stummel had plenty of scratches, and the stem had a hefty chunk missing.Dave2


Dave4 I started out by reaming and cleaning the airways. Then I topped the bowl and beveled it, and sanded the scratches from the exterior.Dave5 After removing the damage from the stummel, I gave it a light alcohol scrub to remove the rest of the stain.

I gave it a dark contrast stain starting with Fiebings dark brown and a hint of oxblood, then after drying for 24 hours I sanded it to lighten it up and make the grain pop. A cloth dampened with alcohol can be used around the stampings to lighten the stain a bit without compromising the nomenclature.

Next up, the stem. I removed the oxidation and scored the area around the repair site. Patched up the missing vulcanite with CA and charcoal, then filed it down and wet sanded smooth, followed by a light run on the wheel with compound.Dave6 I’ve already put a few bowls of Syrian Reserve through it since the pictures were taken. Great smoker. This one’s a keeper.Dave7