Monthly Archives: July 2022

New Life for a Very Savinelli looking Porto Cervo 316KS


Blog by Steve Laug

This is another one of those pipes that has been here for a long time and I have no memory where it came from. I had not been cleaned so it is not one that ever went to Jeff for clean up. It was a mess. The bowl has a moderate cake (mainly in the top half of the bowl) and a heavy lava overflow on the smooth, crowned rim top. The edges look very good. The rusticated finish is rugged and deep and is nice in the hand. It is dirty with grime and grit deep in the rustication. The pipe stinks like heavily cased aromatics. The brass band is part of the stem and is dull and oxidized. The stem is oxidized, calcified and has tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. It looks like the stem had a Softee Bit at some point as the discolouration gives that sense. The tenon is drilled for a 6mm filter or a Balsa Filter. I took some photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took close up photos of the bowl and the stem. You can see the thick lava build up on the rim top and down into the bowl. It is really a mess. The stem surface has the mark from a Softee Rubber Bit Guard that is clear and there is calcification and oxidation on the stem. There are also tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button.I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the bowl and shank. It is clear and readable as noted above.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe. It is really quite nice looking.I reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer using all four cutting heads. I cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife to remove all debris. I sanded the bowl with 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around a piece of dowel to smooth out the wall of the bowl. The bowl was in excellent condition with no fissures or checking.  I scrubbed the exterior of the bowl with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the debris from the grooves and to soften and try to remove the lava overflow on the rim top. Once it was finished it looked much better. Polishing with micromesh would remove the rest of the debris and raise a shine. I dried it off with a towel and decided to address the remaining lava and darkening on the crowned rim top. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to work on the top and inner edge until it was clean.   I polished the rim top and edges with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads to raise a shine. I wiped it down with a damp cotton pad to wipe off the debris after each sanding pad.   I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the rusticated briar with my fingertips. I worked it over with a shoe brush to get it deep into the grooves and crannies of finish. I let it sit for 15 minutes then buffed it off with a soft cloth and raised the shine. The bowl looks great at this point.   I cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway into the bowl and the stem. I scraped the shank out with a small pen knife to remove the thick tars. I then cleaned it with a isopropyl alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners until it was clean. To rid the bowl of the tars and oils that made the bowl still stink I stuffed it with cotton bolls and twisted a boll into a wick that I threaded into the shank. I used an ear syringe to fill the bowl with isopropyl alcohol and set it in an old ice tray over night  to let it wick out the tars and oils.This morning when I went back to the pipe to work on it I took a photo of the cotton to show how the tars and oils had wicked into the pipe. I removed it from the bowl and took photos of the cotton to show how dirty it was.  To begin the process of removing the oxidation from the stem surface I scrubbed it with Soft Scrub All Purpose cleanser. It worked quite well to remove a large part of the oxidation.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each pad. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine and gave it a final coat and set it aside to dry.    I touched up the Savinelli Shield S on the stem top with Rub’n Buff Antique Gold. I worked it into the stamping with a tooth pick. I buffed it off with a cotton pad and then rubbed it down with some Obsidian Oil.I put the stem back on the Savinelli Porto Cervo 316KS Oval Shank Rusticated Dublin and buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I polished the briar and the vulcanite of the stem until there was a rich shine. This classic Savinelli shape and finish really highlights a proportionally well carved pipe. Once I buffed the pipe the briar came alive and the variety of colours in the nooks and crannies of the rustication popped with polishing. The black vulcanite stem with the twin brass bands had a rich glow. This Porto Cervo 316KS fits well in the hand and sits right in the mouth. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 6 inches, Height: 1 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¾ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of and inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.45 ounces/41 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes online store in the Italian Pipemakers Section. If you are interested let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as it was a pleasure to work on.

Found another Oddity – an Mastercraft Century Old Briar Sparkless Cigar Pipe


Blog by Steve Laug

I went through my boxes of pipes and pulled out another rusticated Cigar Pipe that Jeff I had picked up somewhere on our journey. I think we must have thought it was unsmoked but when I took it apart I would have to change that assessment to lightly smoked. The pipe is stamped on both sides. On the left side it reads CIGAR-PIPE [over] SPARKLESS. On the right side it reads CENTURY OLD [over] BRIAR – Italy. Around the end below the metal nose cone it is stamped REG. No MU 3840 on one side and on the other PERFECTED. The finish was quite clean with no dust or debris in the rustication. There was a varnish coat on the finish that looked very good. The bowl is split in half and held together by a threaded metal apparatus in the stem end of the pipe. The other end is threaded in the briar and screws onto the apparatus. There is an aluminum nose cone on the front end of the pipe and it was tarnished. The inside was clean but there was some tar in the nose cone and on the aluminum joint. There was a inner tube in the tenon that was discoloured with tars. There was some carbon in the top half of the bowl below the nose cone. The stem is vulcanite and has some light tooth chatter and marks on both sides ahead of the button. There was a Mastercraft “M” logo on the left side of the saddle stem. I took photos of the pipe before I started my clean up.  I took the pipe apart and took photos of the pieces from various angles. You can see the darkening on the aluminum threaded inside of the pipe, the tarnish on the nose cone and the inner tube in the stem. It was not filthy but it was indeed dirty. I captured the stamping on both sides of the cigar pipe. It is clear and readable as noted above. He also captured the logo on the left side of the saddle stem.I worked on a pair of Mastercraft Sparkless  Cigar Pipes back in 2016 so I turned and reread the blog I wrote on the work. Here is the link: https://rebornpipes.com/2016/09/12/back-in-flight-a-pair-of-mastercraft-sparkless-cigar-pipe-zeppelins/. I quote from the research below:

I have seen a lot of these pipes for sale in shops and on eBay but I had never had one in my hand so I had never done any research into them or what “sparked” their invention. So now that I had two of them I figure it was time to look up some information. I looked on the pipephil website and found that they were made by Mastercraft and that there were some further articles in the odd pipes section of the site. Here is the link to that part of the site. http://www.pipephil.eu/oddpipes/pipcig/sparkless2.html. The trouble is that the articles were in French. I used Google Translator to translate them into English and then did some serious editing to the translations. I am including both articles in full here. The first one is written about the smooth briar versions and the second is about the rusticated versions.

Overseas manufacturers of pipes are not deprived of market of cigar pipes based on the mythical model of the 1920s. The best-known is called Sparkless [1] and comes from the Mastercraft House which was issued in several finishes. Two of them will allow you to judge fully of these strange pipes (The article included two photos of two different smooth finishes on the pipes – a stained and an unstained version).

It should be noted on at the outset that it is stockier than its Germanic Zeppelin cousin. When the pipe is disassembled we note that the two wooden parts screw into another – one side is threaded wood on the interior of the piece and the other side has a metal threaded end that turns into the wooden threads. There may be some doubts about how well this type of connection will hold up under use. There is no place for a filter in the Sparkless pipes unlike the Zeppelin. This pipe is adapted to the tastes of American smokers.

You should know that Mastercraft had a long standing near-monopoly of imports of European briar and particularly Italian briar. This explains the stamping ITALY on the side of the pipe.

The stamping is as follows:

On one side it is stamped Cigar Pipe, Sparkless and on the other side it is stamped Century Old, Briar Italy. On the nose of the pipe it is stamped Perfected on one side and Reg. No. M.U. 3840 on the other side.

The measurements of the pipe are as follows: The length is 13.9 cm and the height is 3.2 cm….

The complete disassembly of the pipe shows that the stem in ebonite has a condensation system reduced to its simplest expression here: a small aluminum tube. It should be noted that these systems don’t bring great benefits for smoking and on the contrary can add moisture and condensation. They are often the origin of disturbances in the draw of the pipe and cause of particularly unpleasant gurgle. But it should not hurt.

The details of the stamping nomenclature reflects that the origin of the pipes is Italian and are potentially made by Lorenzo…

Armed with the interesting information I went to work on the Mastercraft Rusticated Cigar-Pipe. I cleaned up the internals of the bowl parts and the shank with pipe cleaners, cotton pads and isopropyl alcohol. I scraped out the carbon inside the cone and the top half of the bowl with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I wiped both down with a cotton pad and alcohol. I polished the aluminum nose cone, the connector for the halves and the inner tube in the tenon with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper and then polished it with a 1500 grit micromesh pad. It looked much better. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the briar with my fingertips and a horsehair shoe brush. The product works to clean, renew and preserve briar. I let it sit on the briar for 15 minutes then buffed it off with a soft cotton cloth. The aluminum nose cone and the briar look very good at this point in the process. I sanded out the tooth marks on the top and underside of the stem with 220 grit sandpaper. I started the polishing of the stem with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiping it down after each pad with some Obsidian Oil. I polished it further with Before & After Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and laid it aside to dry.   As always I am excited to finish a pipe that I am working on. I put the rusticated MasterCraft Patented Sparkless Cigar 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 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 with the colours shining through the various carving in the rustication along with the vulcanite saddle stem. It is beautiful, light and unique pipe. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 inches, Height: 1 inch, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 37 grams/1.31 ounces. It is a beautiful pipe and one that will be on the rebornpipes store in the American Pipe Makers section. 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. I want to keep reminding us of the fact that we are not pipe owners; we are pipemen and women who hold our pipes in trust until they pass on into the trust of the next pipeman or woman.

Restoring a 1950s Era Comoy’s Patina 495 Pot


Blog by Steve Laug

This nice looking Comoy’s Pot shaped pipe has some nice grain around the bowl. We purchased it on 04/20/18 from an estate pipe collection in Sterling Heights, Michigan, USA. It was a filthy pipe with a lot of grime ground into the surface of the briar. The stamping on the shank was clear and readable. On the left side it reads Comoy’s [over] Patina. On the right side it is stamped 495 next to the joint of the shank and bowl. Near the stem joint it is stamped with the characteristic Made in London in a circle over England. The C on the saddle side of the stem is a three part C so that helps date it as an older pipe. There was a thick cake in the bowl that overflows as thick lava on the rim top. The bevel on the inner edge of the rim looked to be in good condition but had some thick lava on it. The outer edge actually appeared to be in good condition. The stem was oxidized and has some deep tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. There was a lot of promise in the pipe but it was going to take some work. Jeff took the following photos before he started his clean up work on the pipe. He captured the thick cake in the bowl and the heavy lava cake on the rim top. It really was a mess. I thought the rim top would be okay under the lava. There inner bevel on the rim top looked pretty good under the grime. The photos of the stem show the oxidation and the tooth marks and chatter on the top and underside ahead of the button. He took a photo of the briar from the heel and right side of the bowl. The grain is quite nice.He took photos of the stamping on the shank sides. It is clear and readable as noted above. You can also see the 3 part C in the photo of the stem side.   I decided to do a bit of research on the Comoy’s Patina line before I worked on it. I could not find any listing for the Comoy’s Patina line on either Pipephil’s site or Pipedia. I decided however to move forward and try to pin down the shape number and the date of the pipe. I found a shape list on Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Comoy%27s_Shape_Number_Chart). I did a screen capture of the shape 495-496 and included it below.I then turned to another shape number chart that had pictures of the various shapes that made up the Comoy’s lines (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Comoy%27s_Shape_Number_Chart/en). I have included a chart below and drawn a red box around the shape of the pipe I am working on.From there I turned to look for information on the stamping on the pipe that would help nail down a date for this pipe. I turned to Pipedia’s article “A Guide Toward Dating the Pipes –  https://pipedia.org/wiki/A_History_Of_Comoy%27s_and_A_Guide_Toward_Dating_the_Pipes. I quote from the article below. I have highlighted the pertinent sections in red for ease of reference.

Comoy’s Name

1900 to about 1919. Normally, the Comoy’s name will be found in a joined flowing script canted forward, with a long tail running backwards from under the “S” to below the “C.” There are, however, 2 pipes in the 1909 catalogue where Comoy’s does not have a tail at all. I also have examples between 1913 to 1919 where the Comoy’s name is still in the same joined flowing script, canted forward but with a short tail running forwards from the bottom of the “Y” to under the “S.”

From about 1917 to the end of the 1930s, the slightly fancy “Comoy’s” can be found stamped in a curve, in upper case script with serifs, apostrophe before the “S,” and the “C” larger than the other letters. The arched Comoy’s with serifs and apostrophe may have been continued for a short time after the war. I have an “Old Bruyere” stamped this way that is just post-war. Pipes can also be found with the name stamped across the top of the stem as apposed to along the side.

During the 1940s, not many pipes were made, but just after WW II, in 1945 or slightly later, the “Comoy’s” stamp was changed from the curve to a straight line.

From the 1950s, the Comoy’s stamp can be found in three variants: (1) A simple block-letter style without serifs but with the C larger than the other letters and the apostrophe before the “s.” (2) A return to the slightly more fancy block letters with serifs and the apostrophe. My 1959/60 gold-banded example falls into this category. (3) A simple block-letter style without serifs and without the apostrophe and with the “C” the same size as the rest of the letters. I don’t think that this stamp was used for very long.

“Made In” Stamp

London Made. Comoy’s were the first London pipe maker to use this phrase. It is the earliest stamp to be used and can be found from 1902 or perhaps earlier and on into the 1930s . At this time, it can appear as “London” over “Made” or in a straight line.

Made in London. I have only seen this stamp on two Old Bruyere pipes dated 1921, and it appears in a straight line under the arched “Comoy’s.”

Made in England. This is stamped in a circle with “Made” at the top, “in” in the middle, and “England” forming the bottom of the circle. I call this the football shape or F/B for short. I have seen this stamp on a Cecil dated as early as 1910 and on an Old Bruyere of 1921 and then only on pipes from the 1930s.

Made in London England. This is again stamped in a circle with “Made” at the top, “In” in the middle, and “London” at the bottom, with “England in a straight line beneath the F/B. I believe this stamp was first used in the export drive in the early 1950s, and I have not seen any pre-WW II Comoy’s stamped in this way.

Inlaid “C”

“C” was first inlaid in the side of the mouthpiece around 1919. This was a complex inlay needing three drillings. First, a round white inlay was inserted, then the centre of the white was drilled out, and a smaller round black inlay was inserted. Finally, another drilling was made to remove the open part of the “C,” and an even smaller black inlay was inserted. This inlaid “C,” known as the “three-piece C,” was continued until the Cadogan era in the 1980s. However, the “C” in the 1920s and early 30s is much thinner and more delicate than the one post-war. Cadogan first changed the “C” to a single drilling with an inlay that had the “C” in the centre, and more recently it became a laser imprint. I have a cased pair of early 1920’ “Par Excellence” where the “C” is on top of the mouthpiece. Finish

Now it was time to work on the pipe itself. Jeff 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 undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the lava, oils and tars on the rim and the grime on the finish of the bowl. He rinsed it under running water. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He was able to remove lava build up on the rim top and you could see the great condition of the bowl top and edges of the rim. There was still some darkening to the rim top toward the back of the bowl. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it.  I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and rim after Jeff had cleaned up the grime and lava. The beveled rim edge and top looked very good. The stem photos show light oxidation and the tooth marks and chatter on the stem and the button surface. I took photos of the stamping on the shank sides and the C logo on the stem. The stamping was clear and read as noted above.   I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo. You can see the small fill toward the top of the left side.The bowl was in good condition so I did not need to do any extra work on the rim or edges. It looked great so I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each pad to remove the sanding debris. After the final sanding pad I hand buffed it with a cotton cloth to raise a shine. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into finish of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Restoration Balm really makes the grain stands out beautifully.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I “painted” the tooth marks with the flame of a Bic lighter. I was able to lift them a lot. The small spots that remained I filled in with clear CA glue.   I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to blend the repairs into the surface of the stem. I started polishing the stem with a folded piece of 400 grit sandpaper. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil.    I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each pad. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine and gave it a final coat and set it aside to dry.     I put the stem back on the Comoy’s Patina  Made in London England 495 Pot and buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I polished the briar and the vulcanite of the stem until there was a rich shine. This classic Comoy’s Pot shape and finish really highlights some amazing grain on a proportionally well carved pipe. Once I buffed the pipe the briar came alive and the mixture of grain – straight, flame and birdseye – popped with polishing. The repaired black vulcanite stem had a rich glow. This Comoy’s Patina 495 Pot fits well in the hand and sits right in the mouth. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inch, Chamber diameter: 1 inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.48 ounces/41 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes online store in the English Pipemakers Section. If you are interested let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as it was a pleasure to work on.

A GBD Mystery Pipe – Unreadable Shape Number and Line Information


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table is a nice looking oval shank Billiard with an oval saddle stem. The shape number and line information is worn off with buffing. The stem has the GBD brass rondelle in the top of the saddle. There is a very faint GBD stamp in a logo on the top of the shank and some very faint stamping on the top and underside. This pipe was purchased from a antique seller on 04/07/18 in Pocatello, Idaho, USA. The finish was very dirty but the briar shows some beautiful grain on the bowl and shank sides. The bowl had a thick cake and heavy lava overflow onto the rim top. It looked like the edges and top were damaged but we would know more once it was cleaned. The stem did not show oxidation but had bite marks on the top and underside of the stem surface of the button. Jeff took photos of the pipe to show what it looked like before he cleaned it up. He captured the thick cake in the bowl and the heavy lava cake on the rim top. It really was a mess. I really wondered what the rim would look like under that. There appeared to be an inner bevel on the rim top. The photos of the stem show the tooth marks on the top and underside of the button surface. He captured the grain around the bowl sides and heel in the next photos. You can see the grime in the finish and a flaw in the briar on the lower front of the bowl. The stamping on the shank is very faint. It appears that there is a GBD in an oval and the faint numbers on the shank that are not clear. The brass oval on the stem top is in good condition. I did some digging on Pipephil and found that a French made GBD that was shown on the site was the same shape as the one I am working on (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-gbd.html). I have included a screen capture of the section below. The stamping on the one in hand is unreadable so I cannot be certain but it certainly looks like the same pipe. I turned to Pipedia to read about the French made GBD (https://pipedia.org/wiki/GBD). I have included the following information on the French made GBD. It gives me a possible date for the making of this pipe if it is indeed a French made pipe. That date is somewhere between early 1950s and the time the pipes moved to be made in England (1981). I quote:

The Paris factory moved to Saint-Claude in 1952. Since 1981 the majority of GBD pipes come from the English factory. At about that same time GBD merged with Comoys, since then all production for both GBD and Comoy comes from a single factory.

I then turned to a section on Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/GBD_Shapes/Numbers) where the shape numbers are listed. I went through the list and looked for an oval shank Billiard. I found the following listing that fits the pipe.

Now it was time to work on the pipe itself. Jeff 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 undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the lava, oils and tars on the rim and the grime on the finish of the bowl. He rinsed it under running water. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He was able to remove lava build up on the rim top and you could see the great condition of the bowl top and edges of the rim. There was still some darkening to the rim top toward the back of the bowl. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it.  I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and rim after Jeff had cleaned up the grime and lava. The beveled rim top had some darkening on the whole rim top though darker on the backside of the rim and there were cuts, dings and nicks in the surface. The stem photos show the tooth marks and chatter on the stem and the button surface. It appears that the brass GBD rondelle is slightly crooked.I took photos of the faint stamping on the top and underside of the shank. The GBD oval is barely visible on the top of the shank. There are also remnants of the shape number on the underside.  I decided to address the damage on the rim top and edges. To begin I sanded the top of the rim on a topping board to smooth out all the cuts and ridges on the rim top.    I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to start the bevel on the inner edge of the rim. The goal would be to restore the original one. I then used a wooden ball wrapped with 220 grit sandpaper to work over the rim top and give the inner edge a bevel.  I filled in the flaw in the briar on the front of the bowl heel with clear CA glue. I set it aside to cure. I carefully filled it so I could polish it off with 1500 grit micromesh once it cured.I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each pad to remove the sanding debris. After the final sanding pad I hand buffed it with a cotton cloth to raise a shine.   I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into finish of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Restoration Balm really makes the grain stands out beautifully.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I used some black CA glue to rebuild the button top and bottom. I set it aside to let it cure.  Once it cured I used a small file to redefine the button edge and flatten out the surface of the stem. Once I had removed the largest part of the fills I used clear CA glue to fill in the air bubbles and work on the repaired edge shape.  I then used the file to flatten and reshape those repairs.  I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to blend the repairs into the surface of the stem. I started polishing the stem with a folded piece of 400 grit sandpaper. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil.    I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each pad. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine and gave it a final coat and set it aside to dry.     I put the stem back on the GBD Mystery Oval Shank Saddle Billiard and buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I polished the briar and the vulcanite of the stem until there was a rich shine. This classic oval shank Billiard shape and finish really highlights some amazing grain on a proportionally well carved pipe. Once I buffed the pipe the briar came alive and the mixture of grain – straight, flame and birdseye – popped with polishing. The repaired black vulcanite stem had a rich glow. This GBD Oval Shank Billiard fits well in the hand and sits right in the mouth. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 6 inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.23 ounces/35 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes online store in the French Pipemakers Section. If you are interested let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as it was a pleasure to work on.

Refreshing a Boxed NOS UNSMOKED Wellington Jumbo Bent Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

Jeff found this one at an antique mall in Oregon back in August of last year. I remember talking on FaceTime with him from the shop and he showed me the pipe. It came in its original packaging and was still unsmoked. The box was quite large and had a felt finish on the top of the box. It was stamped in gold with the WDC triangle and underneath that it read Wellington Jumbo Imported Briar Root. Inside the box was a shiny large pipe. The briar was coated in a peeling varnish coat that was spotty on the bowl and wrinkled on the top of the rim. The bowl was absolutely spotless and the grain that showed through the varnish spoke to us. The nickel ferrule on the shank end was untarnished and shiny. The bent vulcanite saddle stem was in perfect condition with no oxidation or marks. It looked unsmoked. The pipe was stamped on the left side of the shank and read WDC in a triangle followed by Wellington in script [over] Imported Briar Root. I think that once the varnish was removed it would look incredible with the nickel ferrule and the shiny polish black vulcanite stem. It was a beautiful and large pipe. The first photo shows the box as it looked from the outside. When I opened the box when it arrived here in Vancouver last week I was impressed by the beauty of this NOS (new old stock) pipe. The varnish coat looked awful and really needed to go. The removal of the varnish would greatly improve the look of the pipe.I removed it from the box and took the following photos of the pipe before I removed the varnish coat. I took a photo of the rim top and stem to show he condition. You can see the wrinkles in the varnish coat on the rim top and down the front side of the bowl. Around the sides of the bowl the varnish was hazy and cloudy. It obscured the grain a lot. The stem looks very good in the photos below showing the stem.I took a photo of the left side of the shank to show the stamping. It is clear and readable as noted above. I turned to Pipephil’s site (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-w1.html). I did a screen capture of the section on the site on the Wellington. I clicked on a link on the site and was directed to an advertisement on the bran from a 1915 Literary Digest Magazine. The copy makes some interesting reading on the brand. I reread a blog I wrote on a Wellington Jumbo back in 2020 to refresh myself on the brand and follow up (https://rebornpipes.com/2020/12/03/breathing-new-life-into-a-wdc-wellington-jumbo-french-briar/). It directed me to an article on Pipedia.

Pipedia’s article on WDC (William Demuth) pipes is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/William_Demuth_Company). I have included a pair of the advertising flyers on the Wellington pipe below. The second flyer below has a photo of the Jumbo Wellington and its original sales price. Look at the price of this pipe when it was sold. Now it was time to work on the pipe. I wiped the bowl down with acetone to remove the cloudy and wrinkled varnish coat on the briar. The finish removed reveals a beautiful piece of briar with great grain. Have a look. I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each pad to remove the sanding debris. After the final sanding pad I hand buffed it with a cotton cloth to raise a shine. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into finish of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Restoration Balm really makes the grain stands out beautifully. I set the bowl aside and turned to the stem. I polished it with micromesh sanding pads. I dry sanded it with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiped it down with Obsidian Oil. I started polishing the stem with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish. I wiped it down again with Obsidian Oil and let it dry. I put the stem back on the Unsmoked NOS Wellington Jumbo Bent Billiard and buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I polished the briar and the vulcanite of the stem until there was a rich shine. The grain follows the shape around the classic large Bent Billiard shape. It has some amazing grain on a proportionally well carved pipe. Once I buffed the pipe the briar came alive and the mixture of grain – straight, flame and birdseye – popped with polishing. The black vulcanite stem had a rich glow. This large pipe sits right in the mouth and is definitely a pipe to smoke while sitting and enjoying a book or a glass of your favourite beverage. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 9 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inch, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 3.46 ounces/98 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes online store in the American Pipemakers Section. If you are interested in breaking this old timer in with a tobacco of your choice let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as it was a pleasure to work on.

With the pipe polished and looking very grand I put it back into the box to await its new trustee.

Comoy’s Made Lord Clive 827 Bulldog (made for Wally Frank Ltd.)


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe is one that Jeff picked up from an antique store on 10/14/17 in Pocatello, Idaho, USA. The store is no longer there so it is a memory that we both share having bought pipes from them over the years. This one is a very English looking straight Bulldog with a taper stem. It is stamped on the top left of the diamond shank and reads Lord Clive in script [over] MADE IN ENGLAND. On the left underside of the shank it is stamped WALLY FRANK [over] LIMITED. On the top right side of the diamond shank it is stamped with the shape number 827. The finish is very dirty with a thick cake and lava overflow on the rim top. There are some nicks in the surface of the briar as well. The twin rings around the cap are in good condition which is a blessing as these are often chipped and damaged. The stem has shield with a C in the middle stamped in gold on the left top side of the diamond taper. It is lightly oxidized and has tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. There is also a chip on the right underside of the button that will need to be addressed. It is a proportionally pleasing looking pipe with some interesting grain poking through the grime. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his cleanup and I have included them below. Jeff took photos of the rim top and stem to give a clear picture of the condition of the bowl, rim top and stem. You can see the thick cake in the bowl and the lava build up on the crowned rim top. There are some nicks and damage but it is hard to know what is under the lava coat and cake. The photos of the stem show the damage on the right underside button and the area ahead of it. It almost makes the tooth marks and chatter in the stem invisible. But believe me they are very present. He captured the grain on the side of the bowl as well as the deep gouge in the next photo. It is a nice piece of briar. Jeff took a few photos of the stamping on the shank and stem to capture it for me. The photos show the stamp on the left upper and lower diamond shank and stem as well as the upper right side of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. The look of the pipe, the shape number and the Made in England stamp all reminded me of Comoy’s made pipes. I turned to Pipephil to see what I could learn there about the brand and its  provenance (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-l6.html). Sure enough the site had a listing which I have captured in the next two photos. All of the stamping looks precisely the way the one I am working on looks minus the Wally Frank LTD stamp. Sure enough the pipe is made by Comoy’s so my guess was not wrong. I then turned to Pipedia for more information. There was nothing listed under Lord Clive so I turned to the section on Comoy’s (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Comoy%27s). I scrolled through the great historical information sections of the wiki until I came the section I have included below. In the list of names I found Lord Clive and have marked it in red.

Seconds made by Comoy’s – Academy Award, Ace of spades, Ancestor, Astor, Ayres, Britannia, Canadian Club, Carlyle, Charles Cross, Claridge, Coronet?, Cromwell, Damman?, Dorchester, Dunbar, Drury Lane, Emerson, Everyman, Festival of Britain, Golden Arrow, Grand Master, Gresham, Guildhall, Hamilton (according to Who Made That Pipe), Kingsway, Lion’s Head, Lord Clive, Lumberman, Hyde Park, Lloyds, Mc Gahey, Moorgate, Newcastle, Oxford, O’Gorman, Rosebery Extra, Royal Falcon, Royal Guard, Royal Lane, Scotland Yard, St James, Sunrise, Super Sports, Sussex, The Academy Award, The Golden Arrow, The Mansion House, The Exmoor Pipe, Treaty Bond, Throgmorton, Tinder Box Royal Coachman, Townhall, Trident, Trocadero, Westminster, Wilshire

I now knew I was dealing a pipe that Comoy’s had made for Wally Frank Ltd. It was classic shaped Comoy’s 827 straight Bulldog with a taper stem. But I still wanted to know “Who is Lord Clive?”.

So I continued my exploration of the web and turned to Wikipedia to see what I could learn about the person (https://en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Robert_Clive). I quote a summary below and also include a photo.

Robert Clive – Wikipedia

Major-General Robert Clive, 1st Baron Clive, KB, FRS (29 September 1725 – 22 November 1774), also known as Clive of India, was the first British Governor of the Bengal Presidency. Clive has been widely credited for laying the foundation of the British East India Company rule in Bengal.

That short summary told me what I needed to know. It also said more than was written. To the British he was a hero and to the people of India he was an oppressor. But it is interesting to know a bit about him.

Jeff 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 undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the lava, oils and tars on the rim and the grime on the finish of the bowl. He rinsed it under running water. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He was able to remove lava build up on the rim top and you could see the great condition of the bowl top and edges of the rim. There was still some darkening to the rim top toward the back of the bowl. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it.  I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and rim after Jeff had cleaned up the grime and lava. The crowned rim top had some darkening on the whole rim top though darker on the backside of the rim and there were dings and nicks in the surface. The stem photos show that the oxidation is gone. The tooth marks and chatter are eclipsed by the missing chunk of the stem on the right edge of the button and up the stem. I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the diamond shank showing how it was laid out. I was also able to capture the C in the shield on the left topside of the taper stem. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to show the proportions and the look of the grain on the bowl. I also show the damage to the side of the stem in both photos. The first one shows the top right and the second the bottom right. The pipe really is a beauty!  I sanded the top of the rim with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to remove the damage and the darkening. I would polish it later and think it would look very good. The photo shows how the rim looked at this point.    I repaired the deep gouges on the bowl sides with clear CA glue. Once they cured I sanded them smooth with 220 grit sandpaper to blend them in and reduce the shininess of the repair. I am happy with how it looks. I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each pad to remove the sanding debris. After the final sanding pad I hand buffed it with a cotton cloth to raise a shine.   I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into finish of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Restoration Balm really makes the grain stands out beautifully. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I greased a pipe cleaner with Vaseline and inserted it in the slot. I used some very thick black CA glue and worked it into the damaged area on the button and stem using a dental spatula. I set it aside to let it cure.  Once it cured I used a small file to redefine the button edge and flatten out the surface of the stem. Once I had removed the largest part of the fills I used clear CA glue to fill in the air bubbles and work on the repaired edge shape.  I then used the file to flatten and reshape those repairs. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to blend the repairs into the surface of the stem. I started polishing the stem with a folded piece of 400 grit sandpaper. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil.   I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each pad. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine and gave it a final coat and set it aside to dry.    I put the stem back on the Comoy’s Made Lord Clive 827 Bulldog  and buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I polished the briar and the vulcanite of the stem until there was a rich shine. This classic English straight Bulldog shape and finish really highlights some amazing grain on a proportionally well carved pipe. Once I buffed the pipe the briar came alive and the mixture of grain – straight, flame and birdseye – popped with polishing. The repaired black vulcanite stem had a rich glow. This Lord Clive 827 Bulldog fits well in the hand and sits right in the mouth. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 ¾ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.45 ounces/41 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes online store in the English Pipemakers Section. If you are interested let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as it was a pleasure to work on.

Yet another from the Bertrams Collection – a Flat Bottomed Bertram 30 Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

Rather than repeat myself and give the blog readers grief with the repetition please refer to the previous blogs posts on the Bertrams to learn about how we got this collection. Just know that we purchased a collection of Bertrams and a smattering of other brands, that when they were unwrapped, filled three boxes. The photo below is included to show the size of the collection we had purchased. To be honest it was a bit overwhelming to see all of the collection in boxes. We were looking at a lot of work to bring these back to life. The pipe I am working on now is one from that collection. I am gradually finishing most of these pipes.I cannot tell you how glad I am that Jeff worked through the clean up of all of these pipes as they many and they were filthy! It would have been a more daunting task than it was if I had to clean and restore all of them. I am leaving it to him to choose which pipes to work on. He has chosen some interesting shaped ones to restore. Here is how we are working out the transfer from him to me. As he finishes a batch of them he boxes them up and sends them to me. I believe I have all of the pipes here and the numbers are thinning down a lot. I am working through the pipes I have boxed to work on here and this Bertram caught my eye as the next pipe that I would work on. This pipe was another very dirty one! The smooth finish was grimy and dusty but some interesting grain shone through showing me that this was a beautiful pipe. It was a short, thick shank Billiard shaped pipe with a flat bottom and a tapered stem. There was a thick cake in the bowl and heavy lava overflowing on to the rim top. It was hard to know the condition of the edges due to the cake and lava. The stem showed some light oxidation and some chatter on the top and some deep tooth marks on both sides ahead of the button. The photos below tell the story and give a glimpse of the pipe. Jeff took a close-up photo of the bowl and the crowned rim to capture the condition of the pipe when it arrived. The bowl had a thick cake. The flat rim top had a thick coat of lava that was heavier on the back side thick around the edges. The photos of the stem show the tooth marks and chatter ahead of the button on both sides. Jeff took pictures of the bowl sides and the heel to show the marvelous grain on the bowl. It really is quite stunning underneath the thick and ugly grime!   Jeff took 2 photos to capture the stamping on the left side of the shank. The first photo shows stamping on the left side which read Bertram over Washington, D.C. The stamping on this pipe is clear and readable. The second photo shows the grade number stamping lower on the left side near the bowl/shank junction. It read number 30 which shows the quality of the pipe. If you have read the previous blogs I have posted on the Bertram pipes that I have cleaned up you can skip the next bit. But if you have not, then I include the link to Bertram history and information. I would recommend that if you don’t know much about them do some research on them. I include a link to the write up on Pipedia (http://pipedia.org/wiki/Bertram). Bertram pipes were based out of Washington DC. They were popular among famous politicians and celebrities of the time. They made many products for them, from FDR’s cigarette holders to Joseph Stalin’s favorite pipe. They were considered some of the best America had to offer till they finally closed their doors in the 70s. They graded their pipes by 10s, the higher the grade the better. Above 60s are uncommon and 80-90s are quite rare. I’ve only seen one 100 grade. I have several blogs that I have written on rebornpipes that give some history and background to Bertram pipes. (https://rebornpipes.com/2015/06/16/an-easy-restoration-of-a-bertram-grade-60-217-poker/).

I have included the following link to give a bit of historical information on the pipe company. It is a well written article that gives a glimpse of the heart of the company. http://www.streetsofwashington.com/2012/01/bertrams-pipe-shop-on-14th-street.html#

I am also including this photo of the shop in Washington D.C. and a post card of the shop. From this information I have learned that the shape and grade Bertram I have in front of me now was made before the closure of the shop in the 1970s. This Bertram Flat Bottomed Billiard is a bit of a unique shape among the Bertram pipes I have worked on. With a grade 30 stamp it is just below the mid-range mark.

Jeff 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 undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the lava, oils and tars on the rim and the grime on the finish of the bowl. He rinsed it under running water. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He was able to remove lava build up on the rim top and you could see the great condition of the bowl top and edges of the rim. There was still some darkening to the rim top toward the back of the bowl. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it.    I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and rim after Jeff had cleaned up the grime and lava and the rim top looked really good. The stem photos show that the light oxidation is gone. The light tooth chatter and marks are hard to see but I should be able to sand it out quite easily. I also took a photo of the stamping on the left side and the underside of the shank showing how the stamping was laid out. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to show the proportions and the look of the grain on the bowl. It is a beauty! I sanded the top of the rim with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to remove the damage and the darkening. I would polish it later and think it would look very good. The photo shows how the rim looked at this point.     I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each pad to remove the sanding debris. After the final sanding pad I hand buffed it with a cotton cloth to raise a shine.   I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into finish of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Restoration Balm really makes the grain stands out beautifully.   I used a lighter to “paint” the deep marks on both sides of the stem near the button. I was able to lift them all. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the remaining chatter into the surface of the stem. I started polishing the stem with a folded piece of 400 grit sandpaper. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil.    I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each pad. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine and gave it a final coat and set it aside to dry. I put the stem back on the Bertram Flat Bottomed Billiard and buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I polished the briar and the vulcanite of the stem until there was a rich shine. This Bertram classic Apple shape and oil cured finish really highlights some amazing grain on a proportionally well carved pipe. Once I buffed the pipe the briar came alive and the mixture of grain – straight, flame and birdseye – popped with polishing. The black vulcanite stem had a rich glow. Like the other Bertrams I have worked on, this one fits well in the hand and sits right in the mouth. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.62 ounces/46 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes online store in the American Pipemakers Section. If you are interested let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as it was a pleasure to work on.

This Interesting Old Keyser Hygienic Patent Bent Billiard Was Clogged and Unsmokeable


Blog by Steve Laug

This next pipe is another that has been here for a very long time. I have no idea where I purchased it or whether it came to me in a trade for labour. I don’t remember. I have worked on quite a few of these English made Keyser Hygienic Pipes over the years and know that they were made for the South African market. They were unique in that one stem pretty much fit all of their models. They have a unique system in the shank end – a tube that aligns with a tube in the stem. The aluminum mortise acts as a cooling chamber. This  particular pipe has some nice grain and a few fills in the heel area. There is a shiny top coat on the pipe – varnish I think. The aluminum was dull. The bowl had been reamed but the pipe otherwise was filthy. I could blow air through the stem but not through the bowl and shank. It was clogged and unsmokeable. The rim top was quite clean and the inner edge was damaged on the front with darkening and burn marks. The stem was chipped on the end that fit in the shank and was missing a small chunk. The top and underside of the stem was covered with deep tooth marks. Internally it was filthy with build up in and around the tube inside. The pipe smelled like older English tobacco. I took some photos of the pipe to give a sense of what I saw before I started.   I took photos of the rim top and inner edge of the bowl to show the burn damage and darkening there. I also tried to capture the chipped end at the place it inserts in the shank and the tooth marks in the stem on the top and underside of the stem just ahead of the button. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the proportion. I tried to capture the “plumbing” in the shank and in the stem. The inner tube in the shank was straight and the tube in the stem was aimed downward. The mortise acted as a cooling chamber. You can also see the chip missing from the end of the stem. I also had some saved advertisements on the system that I have included below to show how it works. It is a unique pipe.It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Keyser [over] Hygienic [over] Patent. On the right side it is stamped Made in England. There was also  long patent number stamp in the inside of the aluminum shank extension. I am including two links below. The first is to a blog I wrote on a Keyser Bent Billiard that is very similar to the one on the table now. It is a good read in terms of history and detail on the brand (https://rebornpipes.com/2018/09/27/restoring-a-keyser-hygienic-patent-from-a-garden-shed-in-england/). The second one is to a pamphlet that I have on rebornpipes about the brand. It is a classic piece of old advertising (https://rebornpipes.com/2018/10/01/keyser-hygienic-pipes-pamphlet/). Give it a read.

Now it was time to work on the pipe. I decided to address the blockage in the airway from the shank to the bowl. I worked many pipe cleaners through but was not able to break through at all. I finally used a straightened paper clip and carefully worked it into and around the inside of the airway and was able to break the clog. It took quite a bit of probing with the clip to finally remove the blockage and give the bowl good draught but once it was open it was great. I cleaned out the chamber in the shank and in the stem as well as the airways in both with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and Isopropyl 99% alcohol. Many pipe cleaners and much time passed and the draught was clean and open in both the stem and the shank. With the bowl and shank clean I moved on to repair the shrunken fills in the heel. I used the tip of a Maple and black stain pen to darken the putty spots before putting a drop of clear CA glue on top to fill them in. Once the repairs cured I sanded them smooth with 220 grit sandpaper to blend them into the surface of the bowl. While they are dark spots and look quite large at this point once I work them over with micromesh they will be smaller and a bit lighter.   With that done I worked on the burn damage and darkening on the inner edge of the rim. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to give the edge a light bevel to minimize the damage and bring the bowl back to round.   I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each pad to remove the sanding debris. After the final sanding pad I hand buffed it with a cotton cloth to raise a shine.   I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into finish of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect it. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Restoration Balm really makes the grain stands out beautifully.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I used a topping board to smooth out the chip on the right side of the stem. To do that I flattened the end and reduced the diameter of the stem to fit more smoothly into the shank of the pipe.   I filled in the tooth marks on both sides of the stem with clear CA glue. Once it cured I flattened out the repairs with 220 grit sandpaper (I forgot to take photos of this step).  I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with Obsidian Oil. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both fine and extra fine and buffed it with a cotton pad. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry.  I carefully polished stem with Blue Diamond to polish out the remaining small scratches. I used a very light touch so as not to damage the stem. I buffed the bowl with Blue Diamond as well – a bit more vigorously. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The pipe polished up pretty nicely. The grain came alive with the buffing and works well with the polished aluminum ferrule and the polished black vulcanite stem. Altogether the pipe has a rich look. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The shape, finish and flow of the pipe and stem are very well done. The dimensions are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.55 ounces/44 grams. I will be gifting this pipe to a good friend of mine who I think will appreciate cool smoke the pipe delivers. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this well-made Keyser Hygienic Bent Billiard Patent pipe.

New Life for a Stanwell Legend 126


This is one of my favourite shapes and Charles did a great job bringing it back to life. Give his blog a read. Thanks Charles.

The pipe on the work table today was sent to me for some TLC. Its steward was concerned about the condition of the stem and the fading finish around …

New Life for a Stanwell Legend 126

Renewing a Barling BB&S Challenger London England 5589 Billiard


Welcome Back Dal. Good to see your work on pipes once more. — Steve

After serving in Krakow, Poland, for a number of months helping with the Ukraine Crisis, my wife and I recently returned to home-base in Golden, …

Renewing a Barling BB&S Challenger London England 5589 Billiard