Blog by Steve Laug
When I was visiting in Idaho my brother Jeff pulled out this Jobey box and handed it to me to look at. I had no idea what to expect once I opened the box. I have cleaned up a lot of Jobey pipes over the years and have really liked the rusticated Jobey Stromboli pipes with their colourful stems and deep rough surfaces. I have seen others that were pretty but nothing spectacular. I turned the box over in my hands to see if there were any hints on the outside what was hidden under the lid but there was nothing – just the classic red box with the Jobey Pipe logo on the lid.I opened the box to have a look and was surprised. What was inside was actually a really nice looking pipe at first glance. It was stamped on the left side of the shank Jobey over DESIGNER and on the right side of the shank D80 over HANDMADE. The stem was Lucite with a variety of brown tones that ran at an angle across the stem. The finish looked funny to me in that for a handmade pipe it was rough textured. I expected it to be silky smooth but it was rough to the touch and there were brush marks all over the surface. It looked to me like someone had brushed on a thick coat of varnish to give the pipe a perma-shine. The box also had the red pipe sleeve and a Jobey Polishing Cloth in the lid.Inside the polishing cloth package there was also a cloth for treating the stem. Both were Jobey specialty products. The Jobey sock is slightly worn.I took the leaflet out of the top of the box to have a look and it was a fun read. It reads: “The Jobey Pipe Guarantee, Limited Warranty. Should any Jobey pipe burn out within 90 days of normal usage, a new bowl will be furnished by us without charge. Shanks and mouthpieces are not guaranteed, but may be repaired for a moderate charge. This warranty gives you specific legal rights and you may also have other rights which may vary from state to state. Return the burned out bowl with a request for bowl replacement to: – Hollco International Repair Department, 37 Warren St., New York, NY 10007.”
The other side reads: “This Pipe has the “Jobey Link” U.S. Pat.No. 3537462. The unique “Jobey Link” is the first big breakthrough in high quality pipe mounting. There is no metal. Easy to repair – just ask your dealer for an economical replacement “Jobey Link” it keeps your pipe permanently mounted without loosening up. The “Jobey Link” is precision threaded into the briar, but is still adjustable within the stem so that it always lines up straight. If the “Jobey Link” becomes difficult to unscrew use a coin in the convenient unscrewing slot (X). The “Jobey Link” comes in 4 sizes, small, medium short, medium long and large.”I took some photos of the pipe to show how the varnish coat had muddied the finish and hid the grain as well as hopefully captured some of the brush strokes. Under the varnish on the rim on the back inner edge of the bowl there was also some tar that had been painted over. I took some close-up photos of the rim and the stamping on the shank. In those photos you can clearly see the tar on the rim, the clear stamping on the shank and the brush strokes of the varnish on the pipe. I was hopeful that the shiny coat on the bowl was not urethane but merely varnish. The muddiness of the finish and the way it felt in the hand made me hopeful. I scrubbed the bowl with acetone on cotton pads and was amazed at how easily it came off. I was really happy that I was not dealing with a plastic coat. I scrubbed it repeatedly until the grain clearly showed. The bowl was still rough under the varnish so I wet sanded it with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads. I scrubbed the internals of the mortise and airway in the shank to clean out any build up in the threads and airway. I used cotton swabs and alcohol and found that it was really quite clean. I remove the Jobey Link from the end of the stem and cleaned out the airway in the link and the stem with cotton swabs, pipe cleaners and alcohol.I threaded the Jobey Link into the end of the shank and set it then pushed the stem in place on the other end of the link.I reamed the bowl back to bare briar with the Savinelli Pipe Knife.I wet sanded the Lucite stem with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads and wiped it down with a cotton pad. I sanded 3200-4000 and wiped it down again. I finished sanding it with 6000-12000 grit pads to finish polishing it. I gave the bowl a light coat of olive oil and then buffed it and the stem with Blue Diamond. I gave the bowl and stem multiple coats of carnauba wax and buffed it with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. Personally I have never seen a Jobey quite like this one. The carver who did the work captured the lay of the grain extremely well with it flowing up the shank. The new oil and wax finish really went well with the brown striated Lucite stem. Thanks for looking.