Blog by Steve Laug
I have this pipe and one other left to clean up of the donated pipes for the benefit of Smokers Forums. This one is a Peterson’s System Standard Bent Pot. It is stamped Peterson’s System Standard on the left side and on the right side it is stamped Made in the Republic of Ireland over 301 which is the shape number. The finish was shot, worn and stained with most of the colour faded out. The nickel ferrule was oxidized and dull. The rim was dirty and nicked on the top surface but undamaged on the inner or outer edge. There were some deep scratches on the underside of the bowl that went across the surface of the briar. They were ragged and I knew that steaming them would not raise them. There was also some road rash on the right side of the bowl where it looked as if the bowl was dropped on concrete. The bowl had a thick cake that was soft and crumbly. The stem was oxidized and dirty with some tooth chatter on the top side and the underside near the p-lip. The interior was also dirty with grit. The inside of the shank/mortise was surprisingly clean with dust and tobacco residue but little tar and oil. The inside of the stem was also dirty. The hole in the end of the button was in great shape.
I took a close up of the rim and bowl to show the thickness of the cake. I reamed the bowl with a PipNet reamer and took the soft cake back to bare briar so that a new hard cake could be developed by the new owner of the pipe.
I sanded out the bowl to remove the ridge that appears in the photo below. You can also see the dents and nicks in the surface of the rim. I lightly topped the bowl with a topping board to take out the damaged surface of the rim and clean up the top. I wiped down the bowl with acetone on cotton pads to remove the finish and the grime in the grain of the briar.
I filled the deep scratches in the bottom of the bowl with clear super glue and also filled the road rash nicks on the right side of the bowl. I sanded them smooth with 220 grit sandpaper and then sanded them with a medium and a fine grit sanding sponge. I also sanded them with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads to smooth out the scratches. I stained the bowl with a dark brown aniline stain that I thinned with 3 parts alcohol to 1 part stain. I flamed the stain to set it deep in the grain. To make the stain more translucent I scrubbed down the surface with alcohol to lighten the stain and make it more transparent. I put a light coat of wax on the bowl to protect it while I cleaned the inside of the pipe. I used pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol to clean out the shank and mortise area. I polished the nickel ferrule with a silver polishing cloth and was able to remove the oxidation.
I let the stem soak in Oxyclean for several hours while I worked on the bowl and then gave it a vigorous rubdown with coarse cloth to remove the loose oxidation. I then sanded it with 220 grit sandpaper and a medium and a fine grit sanding sponge to further remove the oxidation. Once it was gone I buffed it with red Tripoli and then moved on to sand it with the micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads, rubbing it down with Obsidian Oil and then dry sanding with 3200-4000 grit pads and giving it another rub down. I buffed it with White Diamond and then finished with 6000-12000 grit pads before giving it a final coat of oil and letting it absorb into the stem.
I finished by buffing the pipe with Blue Diamond on the wheel and then giving the bowl and stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed it with a clean flannel buff and then hand buffed with microfibre cloth. The finished pipe is shown below.