Blog by Steve Laug
The second box that was labeled Picadilly Brand Genuine French Rustique Briar Price $15 had one lonely pipe left in it after I had combined the pieces in the first boxed set and cleaned up the Berkeley Club billiard. This one was the only one that actually belonged in the set. It is marked as the others had been on the left side of the shank. It reads Real Briar in script over Made in France stamped in a smooth part of the shank. This one had been smoked, though lightly. The bowl had a light cake and the rim top was covered in tar and oils with a slight build up. The stem had tooth chatter on the Redmonal/Bakelite top and bottom sides near the button. The alignment was perfect on this one. I took some photos of the pipe before I cleaned it up to show the condition it was in when I started. It was a really clean pipe compared to many of the ones that I work on. It would be an easy cleanup. I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the cake and the build up on the rim. I also took some close up photos of the stem to show the tooth chatter and the metal tenon on this pipe. I scraped out the light cake with a Savinelli Pipe Knife.Rather than top the bowl and start over with the finish I used a medium grit sanding block to remove the tarry build up on the rim top. I scrubbed it down with a cotton pad and alcohol and then followed that by sanding the top with a 1500 grit micromesh sanding pad. I touched up the stain on the rim with a dark brown stain pen.I cleaned out the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with a cotton swabs, pipe cleaners and alcohol.I sanded the stem with 220 grit sandpaper to remove the tooth chatter and marks on the top and the bottom sides. I wet sanded it with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads to begin polishing them I gave it a coat of Obsidian Oil. I dry sanded it with 3200-4000 grit pads. I gave it another coat of oil. I finished sanding it with 6000-12000 grit pads, gave it a final coat of oil and set it aside to dry. I gave the bowl and stem several coats of Conservator’s Wax and buffed it with a shoe brush. I lightly buffed the bowl and stem with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth. I put the pipe back in its case while I continue to look for the rest of the set to complete a second boxed set. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. It is a beauty. Thanks for looking.