Blog by Steve Laug
My brother found this pair of Dulwich Quaints – one a sitter, kind of bent poker and the other a kind of pickaxe shape. The shape and the look of them were unique and there was something about them that immediately drew me to them. They are not big pipes but they have full sized bowls. The stems were made out of very good vulcanite. The briar was quite nice even though both pipe sported a few fills. The bent poker is stamped DULWICH over Quaint on the left side of the shank and Made in England on the right side. On the underside of the shank it is stamped Fieldcraft and the shape number 102. The pickaxe is stamp DULWICH over Quaint on the left side and Made in England on the right and on the underside it has the shape number 126. I have hunted high and low for information on the brand using the Dulwich moniker as well as the Fieldcraft one. Both take me nowhere. One of the earlier pipes I repaired was stamped with the Fieldcraft name and the shape number was clearly a Orlik Pipe Shape. In this case I have no idea who the maker was. Both are interesting old pipes. The poker shaped sitter had hardly been smoked with over half of the bowl undarkened briar. The stem had some tooth chatter on the underside near the button but other than being oxidized it was a clean pipe. The finish on it was also pretty decent with a few small fills toward the bottom of the bowl on the left side and the front. There was some scratching in the briar as well particularly on the bottom of the bowl. The pickaxe was in rougher shape all the way around. It had a thick cake in the bowl with lava on the rim. The front right rim edge and top had been badly beaten against something that left the briar very rough. The stem was oxidized and had a line of calcification. There was tooth chatter on both the top and bottom sides near the button. I took a close up picture of both rims to show what they looked like when I started the refurb. The poker had a slightly crowned rim that is undamaged and has no lava or tars. The pickaxe is another story. I reamed the bowl of the pickaxe with a PipNet reamer using the smallest cutting head. I took the cake back to bare briar so that I could repair the rim damage. I wiped both bowls down with acetone on cotton pads to remove the finish and the grime that was particularly prevalent on the pickaxe. I sanded the rim of the pickaxe with 220 grit sandpaper to remove the damage to the surface of the front edge and top. I sanded it with a medium and a fine grit sanding sponge and then with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-24000 grit. I wiped the rim down with acetone. I buffed both bowls with White Diamond on the wheel to get a natural shine. I cleaned out the mortise and the airway on both pipes with cotton swabs, pipe cleaners and alcohol. I cleaned out the airways on both stems with alcohol and pipe cleaners. I sanded the stems with 220 grit sandpaper to clear the surface of the oxidation and the calcification on the pickaxe stem. I scrubbed the bite marks on the underside of the stem and used black super glue to repair them. I sanded the poker stem with 220 grit sandpaper and removed the tooth marks on the underside of the stem near the button. I rubbed the stems down with some Obsidian Oil and put them back on the bowls to get a quick look at how the work was coming along.I scrubbed the stems with Meguiar’s Scratch X2.0 Fine scratch and blemish remover. It worked really well on the pencil stem on the pickaxe and not as effectively on the thicker stem of poker.I wet sanded the stem of the pickaxe and the stem on the poker with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads and then rubbed the stem down again with the Obsidian Oil. I dry sanded the stems of both with 3200-4000 grit micromesh and then gave them another coat of the oil. I finished sanding them with the 6000-12000 grit micromesh pads and gave them a final coat of oil and set them aside to dry. The briar was naturally finished so I did not stain either bowl. I gave them a light coat of olive oil and then buffed the stems and bowls of both pipe with Blue Diamond on the wheel. I gave them both several coats of carnauba wax. I buffed them with a clean flannel buffing pad and then by hand with a microfiber cloth. The finished pipes are shown in the photos below. Do any of you who are reading this have any information on either Fieldcraft or Dulwich pipes? I have seen and repaired several over the years and so far have been unable to identify them beyond the initial one that was an Orlik made pipe. Thanks ahead of time for any help that you may have.