Blog by Steve Laug
This is yet another from the old pipeman’s collection that came to me from the local pipe shop. It is a beautifully grained Comoy’s Billiard. The stamping on the pipe is very readable and clear. On the left side it reads Comoy’s over Golden Grain with a C on the side of the stem. On the right side of the shank it is stamped with COM (Country of Manufacture) circle Made in London over England and shape number 110. The finish is decent with a medium brown stain with great grain showing through. It is in good enough shape that I hope to not have to refinish it but rather just clean and renew the finish. There is thin cake in the bowl and rim darkening. The stem is oxidized and there is light tooth marks on top and bottom of the stem near the button. There is also some calcification from a Softee bit on the stem and button. The photo to the left shows the condition of the rim. The inner beveled edge of the rim is cake and dirty. There is a light lava overflow on the rim and some darkening as well. I am hoping that I will be able to scrub this off and also clean up the inner rim bevel in such a way that I can leave the original finish unaltered. It will take some slow and patient work to restore it and not just refinish it.
I reamed the bowl back to clean briar using a PipNet pipe reaming tool and a Savinelli Fitsall Reamer. I carefully worked the reamer over the beveled rim to remove the buildup on the edges of the rim.I scraped the rim edge and bevel with a sharp pen knife to remove the carbon buildup that was there and scrubbed the rim and bowl with a small bit of Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the darkening and grime left behind after the scraping. The photo below shows the rim after this work over. It is looking pretty good at this point.I cleaned out the internals of the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with 99% isopropyl alcohol, pipe cleaners and cotton swabs.I “painted” the tooth marks in the stem with the flame of a Bic lighter to raise the vulcanite. I am so thankful for the fact that vulcanite has memory and when heated will return to its original state if the tooth marks have not broken the edges. In this case it worked very well and I was able to minimize them with the flame and finish working on them with 220 grit sandpaper. I sanded the stem and removed the oxidation and the calcification on the button end.I polished the cleaned stems with micromesh sanding pads – wetsanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12000 grit pads. I buffed the stem with White Diamond after the 4000 grit pad and then finished with the remaining three pads. I rubbed the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each set of three pads and after the final rubdown set it aside to let the oil dry. Once the oil dried I buffed the pipe and stem with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel and gave it multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed it with a clean buffing wheel to raise a shine on the bowl and stem and then hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. It is a beautiful grained Comoy’s made pipe that should provide years of good smoking to whoever adds it to their rack next. It will be available for purchase on the rebornpipes store later today if you wish to add it to your collection. Thanks for looking.