Daily Archives: March 23, 2020

New Life for a Savinelli Capri Root Briar 510 Bulldog


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table is a Savinelli Capri Bulldog. This Capri Bulldog has a Sea Rock finish on the bowl and shank. There are twin rings separating the cap from the bowl. The diamond shank flows well into diamond saddle.  I really like this style of rustication and the tactile nature of the pipe in your hand. It only gets better as the briar is heated during a smoke. The pipe is stamped on a smooth panel on the left underside of the shank and reads Capri over Root Briar over the shape number 510. Next that is stamped Savinelli Italy. The rim top is rusticated and it is filled in with a lava overflow. It was hard to know what the inner edge looked like due to the cake and lava. There was a thick cake in the bowl. The pipe was dirty and dusty in all of the nooks and crannies of the rustication. The saddle stem was vulcanite and had tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button. It was oxidized and had some calcification on the end. Jeff took some photos of the pipe to show the general condition of the pipe before he started his clean up. Jeff took some close-up photos of the rim top and bowl from various angles to show the overall condition. There is thick coat of lava in f the grooves and almost flattening the rustication. You can also see the cake in the bowl. It was a well loved pipe and smoked a lot by the previous pipe man. Jeff took some photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to show the condition of the finish on the pipe. The photos show the beautiful sea rock style rustication around the bowl. Under the dust and grime it was a nice looking bowl. I think it will be a beautiful bulldog pipe once it is restored. He took a photo of the stamping on the left underside of the shank. On the shank it was stamped Capri over Root Briar over the shape number 510. Running perpendicular to that it was stamped Savinelli over Italy.The next two photos show the top and underside of the stem. It is dirty and has calcification on both sides at the button. There is also some tooth chatter and some light tooth marks with some damage to the button edge. The third photo shows the flow of the stem and shank. You can also see a remnant of the Savinelli S Shield logo on the stem.I have always like the Savinelli Capri Root Briar finish so I was glad to be working on this one. When I received it Jeff had once again done an amazing job cleaning the pipe. He reamed it with a PipNet pipe reamer and got rid of the cake. He cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife so that we could see the walls of the bowl and assess for damage. He cleaned the internals of the shank and stem with alcohol, pipe cleaners and alcohol. He scrubbed the exterior with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush. He rinsed the pipe under warm water. He dried it off with a cloth and then let it air dry. The stem was scrubbed with Soft Scrub and soaked in Before & After Deoxidizer. It came out looking very good. The finish on the bowl and the rim top cleaned up beyond my expectations. I took pictures of the pipe to show how it looked when I unpacked it. I took a close up photo of the rim top to show how clean it was. Jeff had been able to remove the entire thick lava coat and the rim looked very good. The inner edge of the rim and the ridges and valleys of the plateau looked good. The stem looked good just some light tooth chatter and several deeper tooth marks on the button.Even the stamping cleaned up well and is still very clear and readable. Because the pipe was rusticated and so clean my work was pretty minimal. I cleaned up some of the darkening and smoothed out the inner edge of the rim with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper.I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the smooth briar with my fingertips and the plateau and sandblasted side with a horsehair shoe brush. The product is a great addition to the restoration work. It enlivens, enriches and protects the briar while giving it a deep glow. I appreciate Mark Hoover’s work in developing this product. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to addressing the issues with the stem. I “painted” the tooth marks with the flame of a Bic lighter to try and raise them a bit. Remember vulcanite has “memory” and if the marks are not sharp edge the heat well raise them. In this case while they came up some on the blade there were still two deep marks. I filled in the remaining tooth marks on the button edge with clear CA glue and set the stem aside to dry.I sanded the surface of the stem with 220 grit sandpaper to further blend in the repairs. I started the polishing process with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper.I polished the stem with Denicare Mouthpiece Polish from a tin of it I have in the drawer here. It is a gritty red paste (similar in grit to red Tripoli) that I rub on with my finger tips and work it into the surface of the stem and button and buff it off with a cotton pad. It gives me a bit of a head start on the polishing work.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-12000 grit sanding pads. I wiped it down after each sanding pad with Obsidian Oil. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I buffed the stem with a soft cloth to raise the shine. I wiped the stem down with Briarville’s No Oxy Oil to preserve and protect the stem surface. I am on the homestretch with this Savinelli Made Capri Root Briar Bulldog 510! As always I am excited to finish a pipe that I am working on. I put the pipe back together and buffed it with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I used a gentle touch to keep the polish from building up in the rustication of the bowl. I gave the bowl multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad and hand buffed it to raise the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like along with the polished vulcanite stem. This Capri Bulldog is a nice looking pipe. It is quite comfortable in hand and should be so when smoking. It is quite light and well balanced. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. It is another beautiful pipe and one that will be on the rebornpipes store soon. You can find it in the section of Pipes by Italian Pipe Makers. If you are interested in adding it to your collection let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.

Fresh Life for a Bari Matador Freehand


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table is a pipe that came to me from Joe in Georgia. He was selling an estate for a family and sent me a list that had a Bari Matador pipe listed. I had him send me some photos of the pipe so I could see what it looked like. I was initially interested in the pipe and once I saw it we struck a deal and the pipe was on its way to Jeff. Often when I buy pipes from the US I have the sellers send them to Jeff and he cleans them for me before sending them up to me for the rest of the restoration work. It was an intriguing pipe with a combination of sandblast and smooth finishes. The left side of the bowl is sandblasted and the rest of the bowl is smooth. The rim top of the bowl is a plateau finish. The stem was a fancy turned stem with a paneled taper.This Freehand shaped Bari is interesting in that it borders on being a panel. The front and sides are flat making the pipe rectangular while the shank is round. The panel idea follows through to the stem after the fancy turning. The blade of the stem is square. It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Bari over Matador in a football shape. On the right side it reads Handmade In Denmark. The finish is smooth on three sides of the pipe (right, front and back) and is sandblasted on the left side of the bowl. It has some great grain around the smooth sides of the bowl and shank. The blast is deep and rugged with some great grain as well. The rim top is plateau and is craggy. The pipe was dirty and the finish flat. There were some dings and scratches in the briar but otherwise it was in good condition. The bowl was lightly caked and the inner edge of the rim looked to be in good condition. The fancy saddle stem was vulcanite and had tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button. It was oxidized and had some calcification on the end. Jeff took some photos of the pipe to show the general condition of the pipe before he started his clean up. Jeff took some close-up photos of the rim top and bowl to show the overall condition. There is some light lava in some of the grooves but overall it is just dusty. The edges look very good.Jeff took some photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to show the condition of the finish on the pipe. The photos show the beautiful grain around the bowl. Under the dust and grime it was a nice looking bowl. I think it will be a beautiful Freehand pipe once it is restored. He took a photo of the stamping on the left side of the shank. On the shank it was stamped Bari over Matador in the football shape as noted above. In my examination of the pipe when it arrived I could see that it was also stamped on the right side Handmade in Denmark but it was very faint.The next two photos show the top and underside of the stem. It is dirty and has calcification on both sides at the button. There is also some tooth chatter and some light tooth marks with some damage to the button edge. The third photo shows the fancy turning on the shank end of the stem.Paresh has restored a similar Bari Matador and written about it on a blog. It is an informative piece so I have included the link to it here (https://rebornpipes.com/2019/05/15/a-simple-refurbishing-of-a-bari-matador/).

I also have worked on quite a few Bari’s in the past and did the work on the brand information so rather than rework all of that I am including the information I found while working on a Bari De Luxe Freehand. I quoted a section from Pipedia on Bari pipes (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Bari). I am including the material that I found previously on the brand. It is good to be reminded of the fact that Viggo Nielsen was the pipe maker. I quote:

Pipedia states that Bari Piber was founded by Viggo Nielsen in Kolding, Denmark around the turn of 1950/51. His sons Kai and Jørgen both grew into their father’s business from a very young age and worked there till 1975. Both have become successful pipe makers.

Bari successfully adapted the new Danish design that had been started mainly by Stanwell for its own models. Bari was sold in 1978 to Van Eicken Tobaccos in Hamburg, Germany though the pipes were still made in Denmark. From 1978 to 1993 Åge Bogelund and Helmer Thomsen headed Bari’s pipe production.

Helmer Thomson bought the company in 1993 re-naming it to “Bari Piber Helmer Thomsen”. The workshop moved to more convenient buildings in Vejen. Bogelund, who created very respectable freehands of his own during the time at Bari got lost somehow after 1993. Bari’s basic conception fundamentally stayed the same for decades: series pipes pre-worked by machines and carefully finished by hand – thus no spectacular highgrades but solid, reliable every day’s companions were what they turned out. The most famous series are the smooth “Classic Diamond” and the blasted “Wiking”.

Now that I was reminded about the Viggo Nielsen connection it was time to work on the pipe on my end. When I received it Jeff had once again done an amazing job cleaning the pipe. He reamed it with a PipNet pipe reamer and got rid of the cake. He cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife so that we could see the walls of the bowl and assess for damage. He cleaned the internals of the shank and stem with alcohol, pipe cleaners and alcohol. He scrubbed the exterior with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush. He rinsed the pipe under warm water. He dried it off with a cloth and then let it air dry. The stem was scrubbed with Soft Scrub and soaked in Before & After Deoxidizer. It came out looking very good. The finish on the bowl and the rim top cleaned up nicely. I took pictures of the pipe to show how it looked when I unpacked it. I took a close up photo of the plateau rim top to show how clean it was. The inner edge of the rim and the ridges and valleys of the plateau looked good. The stem looked good just some light tooth chatter and several deeper tooth marks on the button.The pipe was in decent condition so I started with the bowl. I polished the smooth portions of the briar with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiping down the briar after each sanding pad with a damp cloth. The briar began to shine. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the smooth briar with my fingertips and the plateau and sandblasted side with a horsehair shoe brush. The product is a great addition to the restoration work. It enlivens, enriches and protects the briar while giving it a deep glow. I appreciate Mark Hoover’s work in developing this product. I buffed the pipe with a micro fiber cloth to raise the shine and took photos of it at this point it the process. It is a beautiful looking pipe. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I “painted” the tooth marks with the flame of a Bic lighter to try and raise them a bit. Remember vulcanite has “memory” and if the marks are not sharp edge the heat well raise them. In this case while they came up some on the blade so that none remained. The damage on the button edge came up a little but it would need to be repaired.I filled in the remaining tooth marks on the button edge with clear CA glue and set the stem aside to dry.Once the repairs cured I used a needle file to flatten them out and recut the sharp edge of the button.I sanded the surface of the stem with 220 grit sandpaper to further blend in the repairs. I started the polishing process with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper.I polished the stem with Denicare Mouthpiece Polish from a tin of it I have in the drawer here. It is a gritty red paste (similar in grit to red Tripoli) that I rub on with my finger tips and work it into the surface of the stem and button and buff it off with a cotton pad. It gives me a bit of a head start on the polishing work.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-12000 grit sanding pads. I wiped it down after each sanding pad with Obsidian Oil. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I buffed the stem with a soft cloth to raise the shine. I wiped the stem down with Briarville’s No Oxy Oil to preserve and protect the stem surface. I am on the homestretch with this Bari Matador! As always I am excited to finish a pipe that I am working on. I put the pipe back together and buffed it with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I used a gentle touch on the sandblast portion of the bowl. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad and hand buffed it to raise the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like along with the polished vulcanite stem. This Bari Matador is a nice looking pipe. It is quite comfortable in hand and should be so when smoking. It is quite light and well balanced. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 6 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 2×2 1/2 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. It is another beautiful pipe and one that will be on the rebornpipes store soon. You can find it in the section of Pipes by Danish Pipe Makers. If you are interested in adding it to your collection let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.

New Life for a Kaywoodie Standard Apple for a Special Pipe Woman


Blog by Dal Stanton

I remember well where I came into possession of the Kaywoodie now on my worktable.  My wife and I were in the US for the wedding of our youngest child, our daughter, who was married near Nashville, Tennessee.  After the wedding, driving along US Interstate 24 heading back toward Atlanta, a billboard sign beckoned us like a Siren to heed the next exit – it said: “Antiques”!  We exited and found Madeline’s Antiques & Uniques near Manchester, Tennessee.  It was the real deal for pipe picking and picked I did!It was at Madeline’s that I found my first Dunhill in the wild (Another Wedding Trip Pick: A 1961 DUNHILL EK Shell Briar Made in England 1 4S).  Along with some other very nice finds, the Kaywoodie Standard Apple also made its way to Bulgaria and was posted in my online collection called For “Pipe Dreamers” Only! where pipe men and pipe women can find a pipe and commission benefiting the Daughters of Bulgaria – women and girls who have been trafficked and sexually exploited.  The Kaywoodie is standing in the rack on the right.The Kaywoodie got the attention of one special young lady, Grace, a budding pipe woman.  One of the joys of living and serving in Bulgaria is that we encounter gifted young adults who come to serve with us for a time living and working in a culture much different from the US.  Grace was one such young lady.  She has been to Bulgaria twice now and on one of her deployments my wife and I were host to her as she lived with us in our flat.  It was then that her aspirations as a pipe woman were born as she tried a pipe on my ‘Man Cave’ – my 10th floor balcony where smoking pipes is allowed!  In the picture below Grace is on the right with a Zulu in tow along with a special Bulgarian friend, Kari, who also has her pipe that she commissioned from The Pipe Steward. Last time that Grace was with us, she went through the many ‘Help Me!’ baskets and found the Kaywoodie.  I asked her if it was a gift for someone and she replied somewhat demurely, no, that it was for her 😊.  Here are more pictures of the classic Kaywoodie Standard Apple that got Grace’s attention. The 3-holed stinger of this Kaywoodie Apple marks it as having a date at least from the 1960s when Kaywoodie transitioned from 4-holed to 3-holed stingers (LINK).The nomenclature on the shank is holding on as a wisp in the wind.  It is so thin that only with a direct angle of reflection am I able to discern it.  The stamping is KAYWOODIE [over] Standard (in fancy cursive script) [over] IMPORTED BRIAR.  The stem has the older, inlaid clover. The next picture in this set shows the Kaywoodie shape number ‘33’ on the right flank of the shank which points to the designation of a ‘Large Apple’ from the US production of Kaywoodie pipes (LINK).  According to this discussion on Tapatalk.com, the 2-digit system, employed from 1927 to 1972 when the system was changed to a 3-digit system, was when pipe production (for Kaywoodie, Yello-Bole and Medico) was moved to the Medico factory in Richmond Hill Queens NY as plans for new plant were in process.  The 3-digit numbers was used during this period for all Kaywoodie and Medico pipes, from 1972 to 1980.  The same article indicated that the 2-digit numbers were only for Kaywoodies produced in the US – that Kaywoodie of London (Cadogan) had their own three-digit system.  Putting all the information together, this Kaywoodie Apple is most likely a 1960s vintage.  According to the Kaywoodie Discussion at MyFreeForum the ‘Standard’ line of Kaywoodie started in the 1950s, but with the 2 digit shape number and the 3 hole stinger, the evidence points to the 1960s dating.The Kaywoodie shape number 33 is pictured in this 1970s listing from the now defunk Chris’ Pipe Pages which I had saved from a previous restoration.  The 33 is in the second column, third from the bottom.As I look more closely at the pipe itself, the chamber is relatively clear of carbon cake and the rim has minor lava crusting on the rim. The finish is old, faded and thin.  There is grime on the stummel surface and dark spots/blots that I’m hopeful will clean.  The stem has oxidation but the bit has no detectable tooth chatter. The stem is not in alignment.  It is under-clocked by a few degrees. Kaywoodie is perhaps the quintessential American pipe name and I welcome restoring this Kaywoodie Standard Apple for Grace.  Starting with the stem, with pipe cleaners wetted with isopropyl 95%, I clean the internal airway.  I also use a shank brush to get into the smaller airway of the 3 holed stinger.With the airway cleaned, the Kaywoodie joins other pipes’ stems in a Before & After Deoxidizer soak.  The stems soak in the Deoxidizer for a few hours.After fishing the Kaywoodie stem out of the Deoxidizer, I squeegee the liquid with my fingers and use cotton pads wetted with alcohol to wipe off the raised oxidation.  I also use pipe cleaners to clear the Deoxidizer liquid form the internal airway and stinger.To rejuvenate the vulcanite, paraffin oil is also applied to the stem and put aside to soak.Turning to the Kaywoodie Apple bowl, I use the Pipnet Reaming Kit to clean the light carbon cake in the chamber.  I employ 2 of the 4 blade heads available in the kit, then transition to scraping the chamber wall with the Savinelli Fitsall Tool.  Finally, after wrapping 240 grade paper around the Sharpie Pen, the chamber is sanded to remove the final vestiges of carbon.  After wiping the chamber with a cotton pad wetted with alcohol to remove the carbon dust, an inspection of the chamber reveals healthy briar with no heating issues.Transitioning now to the external briar surface, undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap is used on a cotton pad.  I’m anxious to see what the cleaning does to the dark spots/blots on the surface. Along with the cotton pad, a brass wired brush helps on the rim as well as focusing on the dark spots.  The bowl is then transferred to the kitchen sink to focus on the internals.  Using a shank brush with anti-oil liquid dish soap, the internal mortise is addressed as well as using my fingernail on the dark spots.  After a thorough rinsing, the bowl goes back to the worktable.I use 000 grade steel wool to clean the nickel shank facing as well.  The spotting on the aft side of the bowl, top of the shank and shank underside are still present but perhaps lessened.  They will need sanding to eradicate.Next, continuing with the internal cleaning, pipe cleaners and cotton buds dipped in isopropyl 95% work on the mortise.  The metal threaded shank facing makes cleaning the internals a bit tricky.  I reach into the mortise with a small dental spoon and excavate old oils and tars by scraping the mortise walls.  This was quite a battle! At the end of the excavating and pipe cleaners and cotton buds, more of a truce was called – not a victory.  I will continue the internal cleaning later with a kosher salt and alcohol soak!Not wanting to contribute to the further demise of the Kaywoodie nomenclature, masking tape is placed over the markings on both sides of the shank.The darkened areas on the rim and the spotting areas are addressed with a light sanding with 240 grade paper.  First, before pictures and after sanding. After sanding the spots are erased.Next, to clean the entire stummel of scratches, cuts and nicks, I utilize sanding sponges.  First, a coarse sponge is used followed by medium and light grade sponges.  I like the appearance of the grain on this Apple bowl.  The grain is showing a lot of flow with some bird’s eye.  It appears this block of briar was taken toward the edge of the bole. Next, using the full regimen of micromesh pads, I wet sand with pads 1500 to 2400 and then dry sand with pads 3200 to 4000 and 6000 to 12000.  I remove the masking tape in the last set of three to allow some blending without much in the way of sanding. I’m anxious to see how a treatment of Mark Hoover’s Before & After Restoration Balm works on this Kaywoodie stummel.  I am especially interested in the shank areas where the masking tape covered the briar to protect the nomenclature and is a somewhat different hue.  I’m hopeful that the Balm might even out the contrast in these areas.  After putting some of the Balm on my fingers, I work the Balm into the briar surface.  The Balm begins with a cream-like consistency but then thickens to a wax-like texture as it’s worked into the surface.  After applying the Balm, I let the bowl set for several minutes for the Balm to do its thing.  I then remove the excess Balm with a cloth and follow by buffing the surface with a microfiber cloth.The Balm does a great job, but the only way to remove the darker hue over the nomenclature is to destroy the nomenclature and this I’m unwilling to do!  The nomenclature is a pipes heritage and part of its story.Looking now to the stem, first the metal tenon’s 3-holes are clogged.  Using a sharp dental probe, this is cleaned out.Using 000 grade steel wool I then clean and polish what I assume is a nickel tenon/stinger.The stem surface is in good shape.  There is a small imperfection near the clover leaf.I decide to sand the entire stem with 240 grade paper to remove the small divot but also to address potential residual oxidation.Following the 240 paper, wet sanding with 600 grade paper followed by applying 000 grade steel wool leaves the stem in good stead.Earlier I had commented that the stem was not in alignment and that it was under-clocked.  I rejoin the stem with the stummel and screw it in.  It appears that the cleaning corrected the alignment.  It looks good now.Next, the stem receives the full regimen of 9 micromesh pads.  I wet sand beginning with pads 1500 to 2400 then dry sand with pads 3200 to 4000 and 6000 to 12000.  Between each set of 3 pads, Obsidian Oil is applied to rejuvenate the stem and to guard it against oxidation. Before applying Blue Diamond and wax, I continue the internal cleaning of the stummel using a kosher salt and alcohol soak.  This refreshes the pipe for a new steward and penetrates the internal briar walls to clean further. A wick is created by pulling and twisting a cotton ball.  The wick serves to draw oils and tars from the internals.  Using a stiff wire, the wick is forced down the mortise as far as it will reach. After this, the bowl is filled with kosher salt which leaves no aftertaste.  After filled, the bowl is placed in an egg carton to provide stability.  Next, the bowl is filled with isopropyl 95% alcohol with a large eye dropper until it surfaces over the salt.  After a few minutes, the alcohol is drawn into the salt and cotton wick.  I top off the alcohol and set it aside to soak for several hours – through the night. The next morning, I find the salt and cotton wick unsoiled.  Doubtful that this was an accurate indicator of the clean condition of the internals, I follow with additional pipe cleaners and cotton buds wetted with alcohol.  My guess is that the metal fitment hindered the wick from making it to raw briar to then draw out the tars and oils.I was correct – many more cotton buds were necessary with additional scraping with the dental spoon to achieve satisfactory results!  I move on.Now on the home stretch.  With the Kaywoodie stem and stummel reunited, a cotton cloth buffing wheel is mounted to the Dremel set at about 40% full power and Blue Diamond compound is applied to the entire pipe.  After completing the Blue Diamond, I wipe/buff the pipe with a felt cloth to remove the carbon dust.  Then, after mounting another dedicated cotton buffing wheel onto the Dremel, set at the same speed, a few coats of carnauba wax are applied to the briar surface.  After completed, I give the pipe a rigorous hand buffing to raise the shine.

There is a large following of Kaywoodie pipes from what I’ve read and the following is increasing.  I’m pleased with how this 1960s vintage Kaywoodie Standard Apple has turned out.  The briar grain works well around the Apple shape. It has much movement and action.  The nomenclature is still surviving, and this pipe is ready for a new steward.  I’m pleased that pipe women Grace commissioned this Kaywoodie and has the first opportunity to acquire him from The Pipe Steward Store.  This Kaywoodie benefits the Daughters of Bulgaria.  Thanks for joining me!