By Al Jones
This GBD shape is odd in that it has no shape number and it is unlike any GBD shape that I’ve seen. The bowl walls are thick, also unlike any GBD that I’ve previously encountered. The pipe is a New Era grade and it sports a somewhat rare “Hand Cut” stem stamp. New Era grade briar can be very nice and this one, in a light stain, is a great example. Why was this pipe chosen for a unique shape and deemed worthy of a “Hand Cut” stem? Who knows, those details now lost to time.
The “Collector” stamp denotes one of three stamps GBD used on oversized pipes, with Collector in the middle between Conquest and Colossus.
The pipe arrived in very good condition, with some darkening of the bowl top and mild oxidation on the stem.
The bowl had a very slight cake, but the rim was slightly out of round. I removed the cake and used some 320 paper to smooth out the bowl shape. The bowl was soaked with alcohol and sea salt. There were several handling dings on the briar, most of which steamed out with an electric iron on High and a wet cloth. The briar was then lightly buffed with White Diamond and several coats of Carnuba wax.
Following the sea-salt soak, the stem was mounted and oxidation removed with 800, 1,500 and 2,000 grade wet paper. I was careful to work around the “Hand Cut” stem stamp. Oxidation around the stamp was removed with a Magic Eraser pad, which doesn’t diminish the stamping. This was followed by 8,000 and 12,000 grade micromesh sheets and then buffed with White Diamond and Meguiars Plastic Polish.
Below is the finished pipe.