Daily Archives: December 21, 2016

I wonder how old this Sasieni Ruff Root Light 4 Dot Dublin is?

Blog by Steve Laug

Not being too knowledgeable about the ebb and flow of Sasieni pipe history leaves me with a lot of questions about the latest pipe that my brother sent my way. It is stamped on the underside of the shank Sasieni 4 Dot over Ruff Root Light. There is a 4 stamped at the end of the name stamping next to the stem/shank junction. The stem itself is stamped France. There are four blue dots on the left side of the saddle portion of the stem. He picked it up in a thrift shop in Boise, Idaho along with the Dunhill Shell 5113 I wrote about restoring in an earlier blog (https://rebornpipes.com/2016/12/18/an-unsullied-once-the-paint-was-removed-dunhill-5113-bent-apple/). When my brother first sent the following photos before his cleanup work I was intrigued but the finish looked very spotty. The stem appeared to be in overall good condition with no bite marks or tooth chatter on either side. Can any of you help me regarding the age of the pipe? Any help would be much appreciated.sas1We discussed this a bit and he sent me a photo of the front of the bowl from the bottom side that showed the spotty finish that I noted. There was also a lot of grime in the sandblast grooves on the bowl leaving it with a muddy appearance.sas2The bowl had a thick cake that overflowed over the top of the rim obscuring the blast features on the top side. They also made it hard to tell if there was any damage to the inner or outer edges of the rim.sas3The stamping on the smooth underside of the shank was really quite clear and sharp. The bowl and stem had not been over buffed which were good omens for what it would look like when it was cleaned up.sas4The close up photos of the stem told a little different story than the overall photos. There was light oxidation on the surface and what appeared to be some sticky glue left behind by a price tag from the shop the pipe came from. Just and aside; if you sell pipes in an antique shop or have a booth in an antique mall do not used gummed labels to price your merchandise. It leaves behind residue that is a pain to remove.sas5I was curious to see what the pipe would look like once my brother had worked his cleaning magic on it. I was sure I would be surprised at what it came out looking like. I wondered if the mottled finish would survive the cleanup and whether the stem would be oxidized further as well in the process. When the pipe arrived in Vancouver I took some photos of it to show what it looked like before I worked on it. He had been able to remove much of the mottled finish and the grime in the grooves of the sandblast. The gummy substance on the stem was gone and the stem was not too badly oxidized. There were no tooth marks or chatter on the stem. The reaming job on the bowl had taken care of the cake and the scrubbing had removed most of the buildup on the rim. What remained was a little darkening and some grime deep in the grooves.sas6 sas7I took a close up photo of the rim and bowl. The bowl was reamed clean. The rim needed some more work with a brass bristle brush to clean out the remaining debris deep in the grooves of the blast.sas8I took some photos of the stem to show the overall condition it was in before I started working on it. I was glad to see that there were no deep bite marks or tooth chatter that I would need to deal with on this one. It would be a pleasant change.sas9I scrubbed the rim with a brass bristle tire brush and was able to remove more of the grime in the grooves. I scrubbed down the exterior of the bowl and shank with acetone on a cotton pad to remove the shiny spots of varnish on the finish and even out the mottled appearance.sas10 sas11I used a black Sharpie Pen to add some dark to the rim and to some of the spots on the bowl that appeared to be lighter. I put a cork in the bowl to use as a handle while I stained the bowl with a dark brown aniline stain cut 50/50 with isopropyl alcohol. I was aiming for the brown colour with darker highlights that I had seen on other Ruff Root Light pipes. I flamed the stain and repeat the process until the coverage was even.sas12 sas13Since the oxidation was on the surface and I was not dealing with any tooth marks on the stem I started right away with polishing the stem. I wet sanded it with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads and rubbed it down with Obsidian Oil. I dry sanded it with 3200-12000 grit pads and gave it a coat of oil after each set of three pads. After the final set of pads I gave it a final coat of oil and set the stem aside to dry.sas14 sas15 sas16I gave the bowl and shank several coats of Conservator’s Wax, let it dry and buffed it with a shoe brush.sas17 sas18I gave the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax and buffed the bowl and stem with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. I think the look of the finished pipe is pretty close to the original look it must have had when it left the Sasieni factory. The depth of the shine, the multifaceted colours that come through with the browns and black on the sandblast add another dimension to the look of the pipe. The blue four dots on the stem stand out nicely against the shiny and polished vulcanite stem. Overall it is a pleasant looking pipe and one that was a pleasure to restore. Thanks for looking.sas19 sas20 sas21 sas22 sas23 sas24 sas25 sas26

An Aristocob Brochure

Blog by Steve Laug

In the recent Aristocob restoration I finished I showed some pictures of the brochure that was included in the box. I wanted to post it here and give all of you a chance to read it. The description is on one side and the catalogue list on the other side of the brochure. Enjoy your read.cob13 cob14

I have always wanted to see one up close – an Aristocob

Blog by Steve Laug

Over the years I have spent quite a bit of quiet time scanning through the smokingmetal.co.uk website reading over all of the various metal pipes that have been made. I love reading and looking at the inventive creations made to capture that illusive grand smoke. One of the pipes that stood out to me on the site was the Aristocob metal bowl that came with two corn cobs that fit inside the bowl, held in place by the screw on metal cap. I wanted to see one of those but somehow always missed them on eBay at the last minute or at an antique shop by a matter of minutes. I included two of the photos from the website. The first one showed a plastic box with a form fitted purple velvet nest for the pipe and the pair of cob inserts that came with it. The pipe had a black nylon stem that held a Medico paper filter in place in the metal shank of the pipe. cobaThe second photo showed the pipe taken apart with a pretty good descriptive view of the metal bowl and cap, the cob insert, the filter and the stem with an O-ring on the tenon to keep it in the metal shank.cobbI remember first reading this description years ago when I looked up the pipe on the site. I was struck then as I am now that I could not have described it any better. I have included it here in full with a link for you to look it up should you desire to do so:

The ARISTOCOB is an American made system pipe with corn cob bowl inserts. Originally the AL-COB CORPORATION out of Grand Haven, Michigan, which later became ARISTOCOB INCORPORATED from Caledonia, Michigan. Later still they were bought out by Missouri Meerschaum Company

Apparently available in the first place in a plastic case containing one pipe, 2 replacement corn cob bowl inserts and instructions for use. The cob inserts were made for some time by The Missouri Meerschaum Company, manufacturer of corn cob pipes in Washington, MO. The box shown is their box. They made the inserts from the early 1970’s until 1983. They are no longer available from that source but do appear on eBay at times

The top of the vaned outer bowl unscrews to enable easy replacement of the bowl insert. An inline filter can be used in the stem. The mouthpiece has been seen in two version, with and without an ‘O’ ring. The patent was filed on 20 Dec 1966 with the US patent # 3,292,639. The inventor was Joesph W. Zarikta of Grand Haven, Michigan USA – the assignor was the Al Cobb Corp. (http://smokingmetal.co.uk/pipe.php?page=56).

I mentioned to my brother to keep an eye open for one of these never expecting him to find what he did. I have not seen a cased version of the pipe in my hunts but have only found the pipe with the inserted cob bowl if I was lucky. He happened to find a boxed set and bought it. He sent me the following photos of the pipe. The next set of photos are the ones that the seller posted on the eBay sale.cob1 cob2 cob3 cob4When the pipe arrived in Idaho my brother took some photos before he cleaned it up. I have included a few of those photos next. The pipe was quite dirty. The rim cap had a buildup of tars and oils on the top. The cob insert was dirty and crumbling on the top edge. The aluminum pipe body was oxidized and dirty as well.cob5When he took it apart, the inside of the aluminum body had also built up tars in the bottom and on the inside walls.cob6The inner edge of the insert was in rough condition. The rest of the bowl appears to be solid. The aluminum disk on the bottom of the bowl was dirty but undamaged.cob7The stem was darkened on the tenon end. The O-ring was still in good condition. The paper Medico Filter in the tenon was dirty and would need to be replaced. The top and undersides of the nylon stem had some tooth chatter on the surface near the button. The inside of the shank was dirty and there was some tarry buildup on the walls of the aluminum.cob8 cob9My brother cleaned up the cap and the interior of the aluminum bowl holder and shank. He cleaned the aluminum with Murphy’s Oil Soap inside and out. He scrubbed out the airway in the shank and stem. He cleaned up the damaged edge of the cob insert. When it arrived in Vancouver, I brought it to the work table and took some photos of the condition it was in before I started.cob10 cob11Inside the plastic box there was a pamphlet that explained the function of the pipe and all of its parts. The description of the pipe and how to use it was a marketing document that sold the pipe and all of its design as the best smoking pipe available.cob13 cob14I polished the aluminum with micromesh sanding pads. I started polishing with 1500-2400 grit pads and wiped it down with a damp cotton pad. I continued to polish it with 3200-12000 pads and the finish began to shine.cob15 cob16I sanded the stem to remove the tooth marks and chatter from the top and bottom sides of the stem. I ran a pair of bristle pipe cleaners and alcohol through the airway in the stem to remove the residue that still remained in the stem.cob17 cob18I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with a damp cotton pad after each set of three pads.cob19 cob20 cob21Because the stem was nylon I decided not to use the buffing wheel. I gave it several coats of Conservator’s Wax and hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth. I lightly buffed the aluminum on the Blue Diamond wheel and then with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. It makes a great piece of pipe history in the ongoing search for the illusive perfect smoke. It will hold a place in my collection of tobacciana. Thanks for walking through this restoration with me.cob22 cob23 cob24 cob25 cob26 cob27 cob28 cob29