I’ve had a Comoy’s shape 398 squat bulldog on my workbench before, but it’s not a shape I see very often. This pipe, a seconds line “The Everyman” pipe looked like a simple restoration. I have a number of Comoy’s catalogs and shape charts in my files, but I can’t find this shape on any Comoy’s literature.
The pipe arrived with a very clean bowl, with a little darkening on the rim and a heavily oxidized stem. The stem still held the push in “stinger” apparatus, that presented a little challenge to remove. The stem had no teeth marks, save for two tiny specs on the button. The original owner definitely took care of this pipe. Below are pictures of the pipe as it was received.
I used some micromesh on the bowl top, then reamed the very mild cake. The bowl was then soaked with sea salt and isopropyl alcohol. The stem was soaked in a mild Oxy-clean solution. After the soak, I used a bristle brush to thoroughly clean the shank of the tars trapped by the stinger. The bowl was then buffed lightly with White Diamond and several coats of carnuba wax.
Next, I turned my attention to the stem. Not many modern pipe smokers would want to use the factory stinger, so I attempted to remove it. This one had apparently never been removed and was stuck from years of storage and/or tars. I inserted an alcohol soaked bristle cleaner in the stem, and after a few hours, I was able to carefully twist the stinger out of the tenon. I used a pair of mini vise-grips to hold the stinger. You have to be careful to not crush or break the aluminum stinger because if that occurs, the broken piece has to be removed with a series of drill bits. Thankfully, the stinger did not break.
The stem was mounted and oxidation removed with 400,800, 1,500 and 2,000 grades of wet sandpaper. 8,000 and 12,000 micromesh sheets followed. The stem was then buffed with White Diamond and Meguiars Plastic Polish. This was no doubt the best quality Everyman stem I’ve encountered.
Below is the finished pipe, ready for use.