Daily Archives: September 9, 2018

New Life for a Jeantet Neuilly ¾ Bent Apple

Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table is a pipe I picked up recently at St. Vincent de Paul thrift shop. I caught the bus to meet my daughter for lunch and while I waited for her to get off work I walked over to the nearby shop. I went through the display cupboards and found an interesting looking pipe. It was a ¾ bent pipe with a rounded edge rectangular shank pipe. It was priced pretty high for a used pipe but I struck a deal with the clerk and got it for a reasonable price. I took the pipe over to the coffee shop where my daughter works and took some photos. I took the pipe home and finally got around to working on it today. I took some photos of the pipe before I started to clean it up. It is stamped on the underside of the shank Jeantet over Neuilly and next to the shank/stem junction it is stamped France. It is also stamped on the right side of the shank with the numbers 81-3 It is a three-quarter bent apple-shaped pipe with a natural finish. The finish was dirty and stained from the grime of long handling without cleaning. The rim top had an overflow of lava from the thick cake in the bowl. It was dirty and hard to tell if the finish was nicked or damaged under the grime. The outer edge of the bowl is rounded over to the sides of the bowl. The stem was black vulcanite and had tooth chatter and some calcification on the top and underside near the button. It was stamped JEANTET on the top of the saddle stem. I took a closeup photo of the rim top to show the lava overflow from the thick cake in the bowl. The rounded outer edge of the rim carried down into the bowl. The inner and outer edges of the bowl look very good underneath the lava overflow. There is a thick cake in the bowl. The stem was in good condition. There was some tooth chatter and scratches on the top and underside near the button. There was some light oxidation on the top and underside of the stem. I reamed the bowl with a PipNet Pipe reamer to remove the majority of the cake in the bowl. I cleaned up the remnants of cake with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. To finish the cleanup of the bowl I wrapped 220 grit sandpaper around a piece of dowel and sanded the walls of the bowl. I used a dental spatula to scrape the buildup of tars on oils on the walls of the mortise. I scrubbed the mortise and the airway in the shank with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. I took some photos of the pipe to show the condition at this point in the process.Before I could clean out the airway in the stem I needed to remove the caked and dirty stinger apparatus in the tenon. I used a pair of needle nose pliers to twist the stinger out of the tenon. I took a chance that it was threaded and it was not long before I had it free of the tenon.I cleaned up the aluminum tenon with 000 steel wool. I cleaned out the inside of the stinger and the airway in the stem with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol.I scrubbed the top of the rim and the exterior of the bowl with isopropyl alcohol and cotton pads to remove the buildup of lava and grime on the bowl. I rubbed down the briar with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the smooth surface of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed the bowl with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The following photos show the bowl at this point in the restoration process. The grain is really starting to stand out. I polished the briar bowl and shank with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12000 grit pads. I wiped the rim off after each sanding pad to remove the dust. The pipe really shone once it was polished. I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It read Jeantet over Neuilly. Along the shank/stem junction it was stamped France. On the right side of the shank it read 81-3.I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to sand out the tooth chatter and marks on both sides of the stem just ahead of the button. They were not deep so it did not take too much to remove them.The Jeantet stamp on the top of the stem is quite worn. There is not enough to recolour with white paint but enough that in the right light it is readable. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with Obsidian Oil to remove the sanding dust on the vulcanite. I finished polishing it with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. When I finished with that I wiped it down with a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. I polished stem and bowl with Blue Diamond to polish out the remaining small scratches. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The pipe polished up pretty nicely. The natural oil finish works well when polished to really highlight the variety of grains around the bowl and shank. It has birdseye on the sides of the bowl and cross grain on the front (toward the right) and back of the bowl and on the shank both top and bottom. The polished black vulcanite stem works together with the beautiful grain in the briar to give the pipe a rich look. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The pipe is ready for a new home. The shape, finish and flow of the pipe and stem are very well done. The dimensions are Length: 5 1/2 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/4 inches, Chamber diameter: 3/4 inches. I will be listing this one on the rebornpipes store shortly. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this beautiful little Jeantet Neuilly. 


Recommissioning a Sand Blasted Canadian – Made in London England

Blog by Dal Stanton

The Lot of 66 that I acquired last year continues to yield pipes to my worktable that are very collectible.  Robert fares from the US state of North Carolina and he has seen many of my online posts on Facebook Groups – The Gentlemen’s Pipe Smoking Society and The Elite Pipes & Tobacco Groups. This is the fellowship and camaraderie I have discovered in these groups among other pipe men and women which many find to be very rewarding.  With the internet being world-wide, the fellowship and relationships cross geopolitical borders and often the ‘Fellowship of the Pipe’ breaks down walls that are created because we live in a broken world.  I’ve commissioned pipes from “For ‘Pipe Dreamers’ Only!” that have gone all over the world and it’s been enjoyable to correspond with those who have received pipes from my worktable.  Robert saw an eye-catching Canadian and commissioned it and this unbranded, Made in London England is now on the worktable.  Here are the pictures Robert saw. Unfortunately, this Canadian has no identifying nomenclature other than MADE IN LONDON [over] ENGLAND.  Yet, the ‘flavor’ of the pipe has a quality classic feel to it.  The blasted surface is eye catching showing very distinctive grain in 3-D. This is not a poorly crafted pipe.Along with the attractive blasted finish, another reason this Canadian got Robert’s attention was the size: Length: 7 inches, Height: 1 3/4 inches, Bowl width 1 3/16, Chamber width: 3/4 inches, Chamber depth: 1 9/16 inches.  It’s a long Canadian of 7 inches which is what everyone wants in this shape family.  Working on a Canadian, I always find helpful Bill Burney’s Shapes Guide Pipedia article to understand the differences among the Canadian cousins.  The oval shank and tapered bit identify the Made in London England as a straight up Canadian.Looking at his condition, the chamber has a light layer of cake but the rim along with the entire external surface look great – but a good cleaning will refresh the blasted surface.  The stem has some oxidation and tooth chatter to address.  For all that I see, this restoration should be straight forward.

I begin by adding the Canadian tapered stem to a soak of Before & After Deoxidizer with other pipes’ stems that are in queue for restoration.  Before doing so, I use a pipe cleaner dipped in isopropyl 95% to clean the airway of the stem not only to clean the stem but also to keep the Deoxidizer from being contaminated. After soaking for some hours, I drain off the Canadian stem and wipe off the raised oxidation using a cotton pad wetted with light paraffin oil – Bulgaria’s version of mineral oil.  The Deoxidizer does a good job of raising the oxidation.After cleaning the stem of the Deoxidizer, I still detect some deep oxidation.  To deal with this I sand the stem first with 240 grit paper, also sanding out tooth chatter on the bit and button.  I follow by wet sanding with 600 grit paper to erase the 240 grit scratches.  I believe the oxidation has been removed.I put the stem aside for now and pick up the long, lanky Canadian stummel and begin by removing the light cake in the chamber.  I put down paper towel to help in cleaning. Using the Pipnet Reaming Kit, starting with the smallest blade head and moving to the larger using 2 of the 4 blades available in the Kit.  I follow this by using the Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Tool to scrape the chamber wall and to reach down into the chamber getting the harder to reach angles.  Finally, to bring out fresh briar in the chamber, I complete the reaming by sanding the chamber wall with 240 grit paper wrapped around a Sharpie Pen which gives some leverage.  To clean the carbon dust left behind I wet cotton pads with isopropyl 95% and wipe the chamber.  With a clean chamber, I’m able to inspect its condition and I see no crack or heat fissures.  It looks good! Next, I turn to the external blasted briar surface and clean using undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap and cotton pads.  I also use a bristled tooth brush to scrub the textured surface.  There isn’t a lot of grime.  The pictures show the progress. Turning now to the internals of the Canadian stummel, my main arsenal are shank brushes to reach through the long shank.  I dip the shank brushes as well as pipe cleaners and cotton buds into isopropyl 95% to clean the airway.  It doesn’t take too long.With the stummel clean, I now continue work on the stem.  I begin by wet sanding using micromesh pads 1500 to 2400, following with dry sanding using pads 3200 to 4000 and then 6000 to 12000.  Between each set of 3 pads I apply a nice coat of Obsidian Oil to revitalize the vulcanite stem.  In the interest of full disclosure, after the completion of the first set of 3 micromesh pads, I detected oxidation at both upper and lower right-angle mergers of the stem and button.  I backtracked and used a flat needle file to sharpen the button lips – upper and lower and removed the residual oxidation.  I’m sparing you of the pictures that repeated the 240, 600 grit papers, 0000 steel wool and repeat of pads 1500 to 2400.  On we go! Turning back to the Canadian stummel, next I apply Before & After Restoration Balm to the blasted briar surface to recondition and revitalize it.  I like the Restoration Balm because it takes the briar where it is and deepens it – the change is subtle but noticeable.  I’m anxious to see what the Restoration Balm does with a blasted surface.  Most of my experience using it has been with smooth briar.  I squeeze some Balm on my finger and work it into the briar surface.  I make sure to work the balm into the nooks and crannies of the textured blasted surface.  With the amount of briar real estate of this Canadian it takes 3 ‘squeezes’ of Balm to cover the surface adequately.  After applying the Balm, I let the stummel rest for 10 minutes allowing the Balm to do whatever it does!  I take a picture before application, during the 10-minute rest and after.  You be the judge! After rejoining the Canadian stem and stummel, I mount a cotton cloth buffing wheel on the Dremel, set the speed at 40% of full power and apply Blue Diamond compound to both stem and stummel.  Since I live in an apartment on the 10th floor of a former Communist blok apartment building and have limited space, one of the advantages I’ve discovered by using a Dremel as my main workhorse tool for buffing and drilling is that the buffing wheels are very small – about an inch in diameter. This allows me to surgically apply compounds and wax.  This is especially helpful for a blasted or rustified surfaces like I’m working on now.  I’m able to pivot the buffing wheels orientation to move along with the grain and not against it.  This helps in spreading wax without it getting bogged up on the rougher surface.  After completing the application of Blue Diamond compound, I buff the pipe well with a felt cloth to remove the compound dust before waxing. Next, I mount another cotton cloth buffing wheel onto the Dremel, maintain 40% full power speed, and I apply several coats of carnauba wax to the blasted Canadian briar surface and vulcanite stem.  I finish the restoration by giving the pipe a hearty hand buffing using a microfiber cloth.

The grain on this blasted Canadian Made in London England is exceptional.  Though it has no branding, I’m guessing it was produced in a factory producing other classic English pipes like GBD or BBB.  This pipe demonstrates the classic long lines of a Canadian and therefore it is most definitely a keeper and will be a great addition to one’s collection.  Robert commissioned this Canadian from For ‘Pipe Dreamers’ Only! and will have first opportunity to acquire it in The Pipe Steward Store.  This Canadian benefits our work here in Bulgaria with the Daughters of Bulgaria – helping women and girls who have been trafficked and sexually exploited.  Thanks for joining me!

Sasieni Mayfair 688 (Ashford) Restoration

By Al Jones

The Sasieni Ashford, aka Shape 88 is one of my favorite shapes, and I can’t resist the 2nd line offerings when they pop up on Ebay. The wide variations of the thru their first and 2nd line offerings is pretty amazing. Four Dot pipes were either stamped with the shape number 88 or Ashford during the town name era. This Mayfair grade is stamped 688SN. I assume the SN is to denote the saddle stem.

Update:  My PipesMagazine buddy Dave, aka Hallmark expert tells me,SN denotes:

S (Saddle) N (Natural Finish)

Sasieni second line pipes typically have very good stem work and are a step ahead of many of the other British second lines for Comoy’s, GBD, etc.

During the restoration process, I discovered that the tenon has threads inside, so when new, it had a screwed in stinger, similar to the Patent era pipes. So, I suspect this pipe is from early in the Family era.

The pipe was delivered in an envelope with a thin piece of bubble wrap, stem mounted. I’m always amazed at how this type of packaging survives the USPS handling. The pipe had a heavily oxidized stem and some bowl top build-up. There was mild cake in the bowl. Below is the pipe as delivered.

I removed the build-up on the bowl top with a worn piece of scotchbrite, followed by some micromesh (8000). The top was in very good shape under that buildup. The bowl was reamed and the interior of the bowl was also in fantastic shape. The bowl was then soaked in sea salt and alcohol. While that was soaking, the stem was soaked in a mild Oxy-Clean solution.

Following the soak the shank was cleaned with some bristle brushes and scrunched up paper towels. The stem was mounted and oxidation removed first with 400 and then 800 grit wet paper. I used a Magic Eraser pad around the lightly stamped “M” stem logo. Next up was 800, 1000, 1500 and 2000 grade wet papers, followed by 8,000 and 12,000 grade micromesh sheets. During the final steps, I discovered an issue with the otherwise mint stem – there was a small hairline crack on top of the button. Using a needle file, I was able to get some black superglue into the crack, and then sprayed on the accelerator speed the process. I sanded that smooth with 800 again, and then up thru the progression of paper grades. The stem was then buffed with White Diamond and Meguiars Plastic polish. I was very pleased with the stem repair, which should be as sturdy as new and is nearly invisible.

The briar was buffed with White Diamond and several coats of carnuba wax.

Below is the finished pipe, which will be sold shortly via the PipesMagazine.com forum.