Restoring a Republic Era Peterson’s “Sports” 4 Apple

Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe I have chosen is smooth finished Peterson’s Apple shaped pipe that had a bit of a bland looking finish but had some good looking grain around the bowl sides and shank. It also came to us from the estate of Anglican minister that was a great friend of mine here in Canada. This Apple did not have a nickel ferrule on the shank end. It was stamped on the left side of the shank and read Peterson’s [over] “Sports”. It was stamped on the right side and reads Made in the Republic of Ireland (3 lines). Next to the bowl it is stamped 4. The pipe was in filthy condition when he brought it to the table. The finish was dirty with grime ground into the briar sides and rim. There was a thick cake in the bowl and there was some damage to the rim top and the inner edge of the rim. The stem was oxidized, calcified and had tooth marks and chatter on the top and underside on and near the button. Jeff took photos of the pipe before his cleanup work. They tell the story and give a glimpse of the promise that we see in this pipe. Jeff took photos of the rim top and stem to show the general condition of the pipe. The bowl is thickly caked and the rim top and edges show quite a bit of damage around the bowl. The photo of the stem shows some oxidation and light tooth marks on both sides near the button. Jeff took some photos of the bowl sides and heel to show the amazing grain that was around this bowl. It is a nice looking pipe. He took photos of the sides of the shank to show the stamping. The stamping is worn but is still readable in the photos below and is as noted above.   I am including the link to the Pipedia’s article on Peterson pipes. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (

I turned to “The Peterson Pipe” by Mark Irwin and Gary Malmberg to get some background on the Peterson’s Sports. On page 313-314 it had the following information.

“SPORTS” (1947-) A “Sport” is traditionally a compact pipe made for smokers engaged in athletic pursuits, most notably equestrian riders who do not want the bowl to bounce up and down. Six shapes described in 1947 shape chart. Occasional later catalogs show as many as 11 shapes. Last  appeared in shape chart in ’98, but still made in small numbers. Recorded specimens are stamped MADE IN IRELAND (forming a circle) or MADE IN THE over REPUBLIC over OF IRELAND. See Outdoor and Outdoor Sportsman.

Now it was time to work on the pipe. Jeff had done a great job cleaning up the pipe as usual. He reamed the pipe with a PipNet reamer and cut back the cake back to the bare briar. He cleaned up the walls with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. He scrubbed the interior of the bowl and shank with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol to remove the tars and oils. He scrubbed the exterior of the pipe with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush to remove the grime from the finish. He worked on the rim top lava and darkening with the soap and tooth brush. He scrubbed the inside of the stem with alcohol and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior with Soft Scrub and then soaked it in Before & After Deoxidizer. He washed it off with warm water to remove the Deoxidizer. The pipe looked far better when it arrived.    I took some close up photos of the rim top and also of the stem surface. I wanted to show how well it had cleaned up. The rim top had some looked quite good and the inner edge had some darkening and damage. It should clean up really well. I also took close up photos of the stem to show the tooth marks on the surface near the button.   I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. You can see that it is stamped as noted above. It is clear and readable.    I removed the stem and took a photo of the pipe to have a look at the parts and overall look. I decided to address the damage to the edge of the bowl and the rim top first. I topped the bowl on a topping board with 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the damage to the rim top. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to give the inner edge of the bowl a slight bevel to accommodate the burned areas and blend them into the surrounding briar. I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit sanding pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad.    I touched up the rim top with an oak stain pen to match it to the surround briar of the bowl.I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for 15 minutes and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The photos show the bowl at this point in the restoration process. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. 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 am excited to finish this Republic of Ireland Made Peterson’s “Sports” 4 Apple. I put the pipe back together and buffed it with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I hand buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like with beautiful mixed grain all around it. Added to that the polished black vulcanite stem combined with the bowl and made a stunning pipe. This smooth Classic Older Peterson’s “Sports” 4 Apple is great looking and the pipe feels great in my hand. It is light and well balanced. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 inches, Height: 1 ¼ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 33grams/1.16oz. It is a beautiful pipe that I will soon be putting on the rebornpipes store in the Irish Pipe Makers section. If you are interested in adding it to your collection send me an email or a message. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.

2 thoughts on “Restoring a Republic Era Peterson’s “Sports” 4 Apple

  1. Pingback: Restoring and Restemming a Made in Ireland Peterson’s “Sports” 6 Pot | rebornpipes

  2. Pingback: Restoring and Restemming a Made in Ireland Peterson’s “Sports” 4 Prince | rebornpipes

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