Blog by Steve Laug
The next pipe on the work table came to us from an auction in Ancram, New York, USA. It is a nice looking mixed grain in a shape Parker identifies as a bent apple with a taper stem. The bowl has a rich reddish brown/ oxblood colour combination that highlights grain. The pipe was in surprisingly good condition. There was some grime ground into the surface of the briar. This pipe is stamped on the sides of the shank. On the left it reads Parker [over] of London. On the right it read Jockey Club and the underside of the shank it is stamped with the shape number 570. The taper stem has a Parker “P” in a Diamond logo on the top side. There is a light cake in the bowl and a few spots of lava on the edges of the rim top. The crowned rim top and edges look very good. The stem was oxidized but there were no tooth marks on the stem surface. The pipe looks to be in good condition other than being dirty. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his cleanup. He took a photo of the rim top to show condition of the bowl. The inner edge of the bowl looks good other than a little lava on the right inner edge. The top and outer edge also look okay. It is a very clean pipe. He also captured the condition of the stem. It is oxidized, calcified and has light tooth marks and chatter on the top and underside of the stem near the button. He took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to show the beautiful grain around the bowl and the condition of the pipe. He took a photo of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. I turned first to Pipephil’s site to look at the Parker write up there and see if I could learn anything about the line (http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-parker.html). There was a Parker of London pipe listed and the stamping matched the one that I am working on but there was no information on the Jockey Club.
I looked up the Parker brand on Pipedia to see if I could find the Parker of London Jockey Club (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Parker). There was nothing that tied directly to the line I am working on. There is a decent history of the brand there that is a good read.
It was time to work on the pipe. As usual Jeff had done a thorough cleanup on the pipe. He reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and followed up with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife to remove the cake. He scrubbed out the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the bowl, rim, shank and stem with a tooth brush and Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the oils and tars on the rim and the grime on the finish of the bowl. He rinsed it under running water. One of the benefits of this scrub is that it also tends to lift some of the scratches and nicks in the surface of the briar. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He cleaned the internals and externals of the stem with alcohol, pipe cleaners and cotton swabs. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water and cleaned out the airway in the stem with alcohol. Other than the damaged rim top the pipe looked good. I took a photo of the rim top and stem to show the condition. The rim top and edges looked very good. The vulcanite taper stem had light oxidation remaining and light tooth chatter and marks on both sides ahead of the button and on the button edges. The stamping on the sides of the shank is clear and readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole. It is a nicely shaped pipe that Parker called a Bent Apple that should clean up very well. There were some small scratches on the left side of the bowl toward the top. I decided to leave them so as not to damage the sheen of the finish that was otherwise in excellent condition. I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the bowl sides and shank with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Balm did its magic and the grain stood out. I scrubbed the remaining oxidation on the stem with Soft Scrub All Purpose cleanser to remove it. I have found that the product does really well in removing oxidation that remains after soaking in a Before & After Oxidation bath. Under a lens it appeared that the Parker “P” Diamond had some gold remaining in the stamping. I used some Rub’n Buff Antique Gold to fill in the Diamond P stamp on the top side of the taper stem. I let it dry the buffed off the excess with a cotton pad. I polished the vulcanite stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with Obsidian Oil after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further the stem. The photo below shows the polished stem. This nicely grained Parker of London Jockey Club 570 Bent Apple with a vulcanite taper stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The briar around the bowl is clean and really came alive. The rich oxblood stains gave the grain a sense of depth with the polishing and waxing. The grain really popped. I put the vulcanite stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Parker Jockey Club Bent Apple is a beauty and feels great in the hand and looks very good. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 47grams/1.62oz. This will be going on the rebornpipes store under the British Pipemakers section soon. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. There are many more to come!