Tag Archives: Dunhill Pipes

Stem Button TIME SAVER on a 1940’s Dunhill LB


Blog by Henry Ramirez

I was ghosting through Ebay listings looking for a cracked shank to experiment with when this old classic appeared.  The auction was won for a song because in addition to a cracked shank, the year stamping had been buffed off the shank. The usual whole lotta cake and dented stem story.I started with the stem, which was really in great shape.  I have come to love the stumpy profile of the patent LB’s with their constricted contour button.  An Oxyclean bath was followed by an isopropyl alcohol scrubbing with a shank brush and pipe cleaners. I wanted to use heat to raise the bite marks as much as possible to not only decrease my work load but to minimize the inclusion of foreign filler. To this end I also wanted to learn the proper temperature needed to reproduce my results consistently.

Using a heat gun, I took my time and warmed up the vulcanite until my nose told me it was getting close to burning.  If that happens the surface becomes a porous charred stinky mess!  I quickly used a laser temperature gun to obtain a surface reading of 275 degrees F.  Amazing how quickly the surface cooled off once the heat was removed.I was not impressed by the amount of rebound and it looked like filling and filing was in my future.

Having nothing to lose, I pressed my wife’s oven into service, knowing that I could set the temperature substantially higher than previous attempts without fear of ruination. I set the oven temperature at 265 degrees F to have a 10 degree safety zone and watched as the whole stem “stretched out”.  This was more like it! The dents were now depressions that needed the light to shine just so to be seen.  Little CA and polishing was needed.

I should mention that these values are for older Dunhill vulcanite only.  The composition of vulcanite has changed over the years, according to some posts I’ve read, and I’ve noticed it in the depth of polish ability.Now it was the time to clean and evaluate the briar. While I ream the mortise and bowl I am wishing that I had Steve’s magical Savinelli Pipe knife. Boy, those things are rarer than hen’s teeth and this old cake is super hard. That is followed by total immersion in an isopropyl bath with various scrub brushes stripping the briar. I couldn’t save the original finish because the shank crack needed to be clean and open as much as possible for the bonding. One of the perks of the alcohol bath is that after the bowl dries out, if there is any residual cake stuck to the chamber walls, it shrivels up and is easily removed.The shank crack was now very evident but the year stamping was not.Getting back to the stem, I wanted to know if the alcohol retort was worth the hassle.  I had been as meticulous as possible with the pipe cleaners and cold alcohol.  The color of the used alcohol in the distillation flask tells the story, close but no banana! I could now address the cracked shank.  I had previously repaired such a problem using a micro-screw and bonded dental composite resin.  I was concerned that threading the screw into old dry briar could start micro-fractures and crazing.

This time I elected to drill a channel spanning the crack and passively bond a post fabricated from longitudinal glass fibers encompassed in a strong composite resin matrix.  This would also provide some flex in the repair to accommodate the dimensional changes that briar goes through because of temperature changes during smoking.

At this time I also drilled a post hole at the end of the crack to prevent further spidering.  Because the crack was significantly wide I made sure to introduce my resin with a size 06 endodontic file.  I had planned to use a C clamp to close the gap but I chickened out when finger pressure did nothing.  Not sure how to make briar temporarily more flexible….

After filling the post hole and cementing the fiber post with dual cure composite resin, I trimmed off the post and blacked out the white resin with black CA.

Before beginning to start the staining process I wanted to open the pores of the cellulose to not only gain greater absorption of the dye but also improve the briar’s capacity to absorb tars for a sweeter smoke.  I had noticed such a phenomenon with the Missouri Meerschaum corn cob pipes.

I found that this particular wheel had already been invented by the folks who refinish wooden decks.  I tracked down some relatively non-toxic materials which did the job and whose run off wouldn’t hurt plants.

Sodium percarbonate does the cleaning and oxalic acid removes the smear layer, thus opening up the wood’s pores.  Looking around online for a source I realized that I already had both chemicals in the laundry room!  Oxyclean is the percarbonate and states on the container that it’s great for wood decks, siding and lawn furniture.  Bar Keeper’s Friend has oxalic acid as its active ingredient and states on the container that it works on teak wood.Indeed after scrubbing with both and rinsing with water, I noticed that the chamber’s surface looked and felt less dense.Now it was time to stain the briar with Oxblood diluted 50% with isopropyl alcohol in two coats, both flamed with the micro-torch.I was lucky that the original black stain in the depths of the blast remained.An overlay stain of light brown was applied in 2 coats.After a rub down with an old t-shirt to remove any xs dye, I applied 2 coats of Halcyon wax.  A quick buff on the lathe and then a hand strapping with a shoe bristle brush brought the shine up.  I want to mention that my wife gifted me her silver brush which is narrow and has long soft bristles which easily accesses the crotch of the pipe without fear of collision. This has proved most useful on bent pipes.Another very helpful tip came from a pipe maker’s blog about dead-faced files to add crispness to the button area.  They are the dead faced nut seating file by Stewart MacDonald, a luthier’s supply house and the pillar files which have the dead side on the edge from OttoFrei, a clock makers source.Well I’m now satisfied with the pipe but not finished. They say we abandon these projects because we reach a point where better becomes an enemy of good. Boy that was fun and I hope to share more adventures with these fabulous old pipes!  Regards, Henry

 

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1967 DUNHILL 197 SHELL BRIAR Clean-up


Blog by Henry Ramirez

When surfing Ebay I noticed a very well smoked Shell billiard whose stem had lost its White Dot. It looked like it could be cleaned up to present an elegant addition to my collection. I anxiously awaited its arrival and immediately dunked the stem in an Oxyclean bath for a nite.

The next morning I pulled it out of the bath and wiped off the smegma for my first real look at the stem. The divots reminded me of a deflated balloon. Just what I was hoping for! Off to the buffer I went to buff off the sulfur discoloration with a wet rag wheel and pumice. Knowing what I know now, I should have popped this baby in the oven to raise the dents but instead I got to cleaning the stem’s airway and tenon. I bonded some shade A2 dental composite in the hole for the White Spot and was dismayed that it refracted the surrounding black vulcanite. Note to self, next time place a layer of opaque before the bulk fill. Luckily, when researching the earlier White Spots I came across examples of dots so dark they were black. I had made a silicone impression of a new pipe’s stem and used that as a mold to create a refurbishment of the button. What a mess! Next time I’ll mix the charcoal in with the composite resin rather than CA. I ended up recreating the button the way Steve has posted here on Reborn Pipes. OK, so now it’s the bowl’s turn. My armamentarium and procedure is pretty routine for cake and gunk removal. The rim’s blast was scorched but luckily, the rest of the pipe’s blast was vestigial. This was an opportunity to try out emulating a blast through rustication. Plus, since the pipe was stained rather darkly, it would help hide a myriad of sins. When polishing the chamber I noticed some alligatoring of the briar. Today I would probably schmeer some JB Weld into the cracks but what I did was a coating of Structural Sour Cream and charcoal. I played around with the button’s internals, polished with the usual green, red and white compounds (thanks Tim West), threw on some wax and called it a day! Thanks for looking, regards, Henry

Dunhill 1949 Patent 120 FrankenStem


Blog by Henry Ramirez

Cruising Ebay for a pipe to play with I came across a Shell bent which, as stated in the listing, had the stem bit completely chewed off. I’d been trying a mold technique to reconstruct the stem button with limited success, very limited. Anyway, this pipe’s stem had been chewed to the point where no pipe cleaner could negotiate the airway and tobacco dottle was packed in tight. Here is a photo of the listing.Dang me, the previous owner had a heck of an oral fixation!  This stem was exactly what I was looking for.While the stem soaked in the Oxyclean bath, I evaluated the briar. The cake in the chamber was so thick you could shake a stick at it but after removal proved to be the protection connection because the inner bowl was pristine. I don’t know what it is about old tobaccos but the cake is dry and pumice-like with a delightfully transporting aroma to another time. The bowl’s rim was likewise protected by the lava of cake and tar. When I use my augers and drill bits, it’s either by holding the bit by hand or using an electric drill to hold the spade bit and turning the pipe itself. I’m listening for the crunching sound of cake being cleaved rather than the squeaky sound of metal on briar. Full rotations are usually not possible until the very end.

The stain and finish on the briar had that great oxblood highlight color that I love but was tarnished with a river of muck. I decided to try using my micro etcher to preserve the blast on the rim but knowing that I would later have to re-stain. I didn’t want to use Murphy’s Oil Soap because it diminishes the intensity of the stain somewhat.  Regarding the River o” Muck, I tried using my steamer which has a gun for accurate aiming and a boiler which keeps up the psi.  This muck was visible in the blast’s valleys as a white deposit. I fished out the stem from the Oxyclean bath, scrubbed it with blue shop paper towels to remove the slimy coating and polished it with flour of pumice, green, red, white diamond and Bendix on the lathe with individual rag wheels.

When the stem airway is too congested or crimped to allow passage of even a bristle pipe cleaner, I use a base “E” guitar string. It has a stiff central core wire which is later wound with another thicker resilient wire to poke on through.  My intent is not to mechanically open the airway but to remove any remaining tobacco chattel that the steamer couldn’t dislodge.

Next, I want to straighten the stem in my Wife’s oven. Of course I do this when she’s not around and so far she has turned a blind eye towards this practice.  But if there is residual tobacco burnt in her oven, I don’t want to be around to explain! The vulcanite has a memory of its initial pre-bent and pre-chewed state which will allow ease of cleaning and repair. The only bugaboo is that tenon-mortise margin can open. I was fortunate to have that happen because I have an adjustment technique to fix that which I want to try out. Importantly, don’t forget to trace the initial outline of the bent stem on a piece of paper for a reference when re-bending.

The pipe stem is positioned on a sheet of aluminum foil on the middle shelf where it is easy access and can be well illuminated by the oven’s light, I have tried to use an aluminum pie plate but the higher sides obscure my viewing the stem. I set the temperature to 247 degrees using the Bake Convection mode. This oven is electric and if yours is gas, you may want to let it get up to temperature first before placing your stem. Gadzooks!  The tenon on the stem opened like a blunderbuss barrel and the stem won’t fully seat. More fun!

The cross section on either side of the air way seemed meaty enough for some pins and channeling to create a ferrule of composite resin. I made a silicone putty impression of an unsmoked stem which approximated the same size and shape of this pipe. I made sure to capture the airway’s interior.I then plugged the stem’s airway with wax; micro etched the exterior surface and bonded the composite. I’d gotten a black resin colorant online but found that it either accelerated the mix to a very short working time or inhibited the mix to not fully curing. To blacken my next mix I’m going back to activated charcoal. But although this bit is ivory colored, it is very strong and decently shaped so I decided to simply slather it with a coating of black CA.

When I placed the pipe back in the oven to re-bend it, I found that some of the CA had over heated and was bubbled up like road tar. Note to self, keep CA out of the oven. I had seen this happen with an infrared light in a previous experiment but thought the temp was sufficiently lower to prevent a recurrence. Oh well, just more fussin’.

By the way, when re-bending the stem I never seem to be able to wait long enough and go through several attempts before getting it right. If it doesn’t fully bend to the proper contour, you have to wait until it re-straightens itself and then some. If you get greedy you can snap stem in half. I’m looking forward to my next stem bending because I plan to chronicle the ideal temperature using my laser thermometer.Returning to the bowl’s rim, I stained it with a light brown, got the stem to fit better but haven’t yet dialed it in and polished the pipe.I noticed that the preliminary outline of the stem displayed the additional length that the new bit added.Here’s the semi-final result and I wonder if any of these projects are truly ended because to aspire to the superb craftsmanship of these old Dunhill artisans is a journey rather than an endpoint.

 

 

 

Cracked Shank Repair on a Dunhill CK12 Author


Blog by Henry Ramirez

Henry and I have been emailing back and forth on all things pipe repair and I have to say I enjoy each missive he sends me. He is a creative guy who is using his dentistry expertise to work on pipes. The kind of repairs he does and the equipment he has both built and gathered is unique and certainly adds some new ideas to the hopper for refurbishers like me. I don’t want to bore you with all kinds of introduction on Henry. I will let his restoration of this old Dunhill speak for itself. Welcome and thank you for your contribution Henry. – Steve Laug, rebornpipes

I’d seen this old pipe bought and sold several times on Ebay, each time gussied up a little more but still tap dancing around the issue of the split shank repair band. Being the sucker that I am for gnarly old patent Shell Dunhill’s, I decided that this was the perfect opportunity to see what was under the band and possibly date this old codger.

Using 10x’s loupes with a parallel headlight source, I sectioned the band to find, to my lucky surprise, NO CEMENT! Just popped off, pretty as you please with no clean-up necessary. I used a fine carborundum wheel to initially trough the metal and then finished with a sharp new #2 carbide round but in an electric lab hand piece by Kavo. The Kavo or less expensive Medidenta hand pieces are ergonomic and very smooth running when compared with dremels. I would not try such a procedure for fear of scaring the briar without a hand piece I fully trusted.The newly exposed underside of the shank was faintly stamped with an incomplete patent number starting with 116(989/17) which would place this pipe from 1925-1934. No closure here since the date stamp was completely sanded off when the band was fitted.I was also pleased with the stem’s sizing to the shank. Still there was enough of a suggestion of the shell finish to complement the rest of the pipe.The 8mm stem orifice leads me to think this was a filtered pipe.The usual chamber cake removal (different pipe). I also use drill bits by hand to router out the mortise to bowl.When I want to conserve the original briar’s finish, I plug the bowl with a cork after stretching a latex or nitrile glove over the rest of the pipe. I then snip the tip of one of the fingers and poke the shank through the finger and out the hole. I tie off the glove and scrub the mortise and shank submerged in a Tupperware container filled with 91% isopropyl alcohol or vodka. Black muck floats out with every agitation of the shank brush.Drilling the micro-pin channel across the fissure. Once threaded into place, the pin shears off and the driver/carrier is removed. Of course I want the pin in the center of the thickest part of the shank through which the crack runs.The X-ray below shows not only the pin but also some of the composite plug. The composite plug was done at the end of the crack to prevent propagation.Pin hole back filled with black CA. Also spread some for aesthetic purposes on the composite plug. The stem was then buffed with four of pumice, Tim West’s green & red abrasive bars, White Diamond, Bendix plastic polish, Paragon wax and then a clean wheel and micro fiber towel. The bowl rim was gently micro-etched (Danville sand blaster) and polished with a Robinson bristle wheel brush. Luckily, the pipe was dark in general and the wax darkened the rim so that it blended. I flamed the wax to melt it into the rustications and buffed using a shoe polish brush supported by the bench pin. I ozonated the pipe for a night to remove any ghosting.Hope I don’t bore you with my Magnificent Obsession of resurrecting old pipes with the tools at hand. BTW, the light spot on the shank is an artifact of my flash. I’m going to deep six my crummy point and shoot and use my iPhone camera now that my MacBook can again see it as a drive. If you’re having the same problem, download Sierra operating sys from Apple for free.

Yours faithfully, Henry.

An Unsullied (once the paint was removed) Dunhill 5113 Bent Apple


Blog by Steve Laug

Wikus mentioned in his comment on the post I did on the latest Stanwell Copenhagen Calabash (https://rebornpipes.com/2016/12/17/a-gold-banded-stanwell-copenhagen-calabash/comment-page-1/#comment-19995) that my brother was the MVP of pipe finders. I have to tell you that you all don’t know the half of it. In all the years I have been pipe hunting and sorting and digging through old pipes I have never had the kind of luck or fortune or whatever you want to call it as he does. He has found a total of three Dunhill pipes, a Castello, some great Barlings, a batch of astonishingly beautiful Stanwells and a lot of other amazing pipes in his hunts. The pipe I am working on now at the work table is one he picked up at a St Vincent De Paul Thrift Store in Boise, Idaho on a recent trip to visit an estate sale that had some promising pipes. The amazing thing is he picked up this paint speckled Dunhill for only $9.99. Now that is some great hunting fortune. I can hardly believe the photos that he sends me sometimes.

The next group of photos show the pipe as it was when he picked up. There was a lot of debris and grim in the deep blast grooves and on top of that quite a bit of white house paint on the left side of the bowl and spattered around the shank and a bit on the right side of the bowl. It makes me wonder who paints their house smoking a Dunhill pipe. The first three photos show the overall look and condition of the pipe.dunhill1 dunhill2Jeff also took some closer photos of the right side of the bowl and the rim. These were done to give a clear picture of the great sandblast finish that was on the pipe. It really has some deep and craggy looking grooves and ridges. The second photo shows the cake in the bowl and the overall clean look of the rim. The pipe had not been smoked that often and it certainly had not been oversmoked.dunhill3The stamping on the bowl is readable and clear. It reads Dunhill Shell over Made in England with a superscript underlined 24 following the D of England. To the left of the paint spot on the underside of the shank is the four digit shape number 5113. On the Pipephil Logos and Stamping website there is a helpful key to interpreting the shape stamps on Dunhill. Here is the link: http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/dunhill/shapes.html. He writes:

Dunhill pipes are stamped with a four digit code. Digit 1: (from 1 to 6) denotes the size of the pipe (the group). Digit 2: denotes the style of the mouthpiece (0, 1=tapered, 2=saddle). Digit 3 and 4: denote the generic pipe shape. Thus 5113 can be interpreted this way: (5 = size | 1 = tapered stem | 13 = Bent Apple. The dating on these four digit pipes can be determined by starting with the base date of 1960 and adding the superscript underlined number after the D of England. Thus 1960+24 makes this a 1984 pipe. The next two photos show the stamping from a lightly different angle accentuating the year stamp in the second photo.dunhill4The stem was in absolutely perfect shape though there were a few paint flecks on the surface. Underneath those the stem was flawless. There were no tooth marks or chatter at all and no oxidizing either. Along with the condition of the bowl (unsmoked briar at the bottom half of the bowl and a clear briar mortise with no darkening) this stem points to a pipe that was hardly used.dunhill5The next two closeup photos show the rim top with some of the tars and paint flecks in the grooves of the blast and the paint flecks on the bowl side on the left of the second photo of the underside view.dunhill6My brother did a miracle job cleaning up the paint that was all over this beautiful Dunhill. He was able to get it out of all of the deep crevices and crags of the sandblast without damaging the Shell finish. The rim grime and build up also came off and the flecks of paint on the stem came off without oxidizing the stem. He reamed the bowl and cleaned out the internals in the stem and the mortise and shank with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. The pipe smelled clean and was clean. It came to me and looked like the four photos below.dunhill8 dunhill9I took a photo of the rim top to show how clean it was when I received it.dunhill10The stem looks to be in great shape. The surface was very smooth and clean. The internals were also clean. I ran a pipe cleaner through the airway in the stem and the shank as well as the mortise. They were spotless.dunhill11I gave the bowl several coats of Conservator’s Wax and the buffed the stem with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel and gave it several coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. It was an easy clean up in terms of many of the pipes that cross my table but the finished pipe is quite stunning. This certainly was quite an amazing find and an incredible purchase for a little under $10. My brother certainly has luck and a good eye for pipes. Thanks for looking.dunhill12 dunhill13 dunhill14 dunhill15 dunhill16 dunhill17 dunhill18 dunhill19

Restoring another Classic Find – a Dunhill 4R Root Briar Canadian EC


Blog by Steve Laug

My brother and I recently purchased some pipes from an estate sale from an old pipeman named Gene in Pocatello, Idaho. There were a lot of great pipes in the lot. I have written about the pipes on a previous blog: (https://rebornpipes.com/2016/10/07/a-good-day-hunting-orchestrated-between-british-columbia-and-idaho/). On his way home my brother stopped at an antique shop and found pipes that were by far the most prestigious of the finds. These included a Charatan’s Make Canadian Sandblast 0121, the Four Dot Sasieni Pembroke with a patent number, Pat.No. 150221/20, what we thought was a Dunhill Bruyere Canadian EC 4R (Once I got it I was pretty certain it is actually a Root Briar) and a Jost’s Supreme Diamond Shank bent billiard. I wrote about the restoration of the Sasieni earlier (https://rebornpipes.com/2016/11/05/restoring-a-classic-find-a-sasieni-four-dot-london-made-pembroke/). The second pipe that I have chosen to restore is the Dunhill Root Briar EC 4R Canadian.

When my brother was cleaning up the pipe he called me and let me know that he had found a Dunhill on his recent hunt. He was excited and surprised by the find. The pipe obviously had a replacement stem as there was no white dot. The stamping had been buffed so much that it was unreadable except with a bright light and a lens. He read me the stamping on the shank. Near the bowl on the left side of the top of the shank it was stamped EC and mid shank on the left it read Dunhill over Root Briar. On the top right side mid-shank it read Made in over England with a 6 next to the D. That would make it a 1966 pipe if I am not mistaken. Next to the bowl shank junction on the same side it read circle 4R. The EC stamping told me that I was dealing with a Canadian. The R following the circle 4 told me that the pipe was a Group 4 sized Root Briar. He had found a good one. The only thing that would have been better was if it had come with the original stem. My brother took the photos that follow. They show the pipe before he cleaned it up and sent it to me. It had some nice grain on the bowl and shank.dunhill1He took some close up photos of the bowl and stem. The first one below shows the condition of the rim. It had some tars on the surface but otherwise appeared to be in great shape. The inner and outer edge both looked good. There was a light cake in the bowl as well. The second and third photos show the oxidized and calcified stem. There was some light tooth chatter on both sides near the button. The replacement stem appeared to be well made.dunhill2 dunhill3The next two photos show the condition of the stamping on the top of the shank from both the left side and the right side. It was faint and over buffed but with a light and lens still readable.dunhill4My brother carefully cleaned the externals of the pipe with Murphy’s Oil Soap and was careful in the process to not further damage the stamping. He reamed the bowl and scrubbed the rim to remove the tars and oils. He cleaned out the interior of the pipe with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol leaving the mortise and the airways in the shank and the stem clean. The next photos show what the pipe looked like when it arrived in Vancouver.dunhill5 dunhill6While the rim was free of debris there was still a lot of darkening and thin coat of tar on it. It would not take too much to clean off the surface. He had been able to remove much of the calcification on the stem and clear up some of the scratches on the stem.dunhill7 dunhill8I sanded the stem with 220 grit sandpaper and removed the oxidation and the tooth chatter. There were some light tooth marks as well that I was able to sand out and leave the surface of the stem smooth.dunhill9I gave the stem a light buff with Tripoli to polish it lightly and then drill it for a replacement dot on the top side. I used an ivory/white coloured knitting needle that I trim down to fit as a dot. I chose to make the dot larger than the normal white dot on these pipes to make it clear that it was a replacement. I marked the spot on the top of the stem with an awl and started the hole. I drilled it with a Dremel.dunhill10I painted the shaped end of the knitting needle with clear super glue gel and then inserted it in the drilled hole in the top of the stem. I cut it close to the stem with a pair of nippers and then sanded it with the Dremel to get as close as I could to the surface of the stem and then finished sanding it with 220 grit sandpaper to blend it in with the stem surface. You can see from the second photo that it is slightly larger than the standard Dunhill dot.dunhill11 dunhill12I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding it with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding it with 3200-12000 grit pads. I rubbed the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each set of three pads. After the final set of three pads I gave it a final rub down with the oil and set it aside to dry. In the photos below the dot looks like it has a blue tint but in person it is a bright white.dunhill13 dunhill14 dunhill15I sanded the bowl and the shank with the micromesh sanding pads, avoiding areas where the stamping resided so as not to further damage it. I worked on the rim with the pads to further remove the darkening and light oils that still remained. I gave the bowl a light rubdown with olive oil to bring some life back to the natural finish of the Root Briar.dunhill16I carefully buffed the bowl and stem with Blue Diamond on the wheel and gave them both several coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad and hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. While the stem obviously cries out that it is a replacement and the white dot says the same the overall look of the pipe is beautiful. The warm glow of the root briar finish looks really good. This old classic should be good to deliver a great smoking experience for many years to come. Thanks for walking with me through the process.dunhill17 dunhill18 dunhill19 dunhill20 dunhill21 dunhill22 dunhill23 dunhill24

A Surprise Find – A 1980 Dunhill Shell Group 5 Saddle Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

When my brother and I went to visit the “older than me” pipeman on a recent trip to Idaho to buy estate pipes from him he had this rack of pipes on his counter top. I picked through them and my attention was caught by the White Spot stem that shows up on the right side of the rack in the photo below circled in red. It was a large pipe and when I picked it up and examined the underside of the shank it was stamped 52031 followed by Dunhill Shell over Made in England with a superscript 20 next to the d of England. That told me I was dealing with a pipe from 1980. The blast on it was quite stunning and the finish was in decent shape. The bowl was caked with a thick aromatic cake and smelled exactly like the pipe the man was smoking while we were there – Lane 1Q. There was lava spilled over the back side of the rim top and inner edge but the edges of the bowl were still in round. The bowl had a bit of an odd shape to it – kind of asymmetrical. That may be because of the sandblast. It has a good thick bowl and the shank is quite large. The saddle stem was oxidized and had some calcification on the back-end near the button from a rubber softee bit. There were some tooth marks and chatter on both sides of the stem. The slot in the button was half clogged with debris. The fit of the stem against the shank was snug but the underside where it had been flattened to match the bowl was slightly off. The finish was good so I would not touch that area but it was interesting to note. I did know that under the grime and dirt there was a beautiful large Dunhill residing that with just a little effort would come to light.Dunhill1I took some photos of the pipe once I got home to Canada and was going to work on it. You can see the beautiful grain in the blast and the state of the stem and finish in the photos.Dunhill2 Dunhill3 Dunhill4 Dunhill5I took some close-up photos of the bottom of the shank to show the stamping and of the rim to show what the overflow looked like. Most of the blast on the rim was filled in with lava and the cake was uneven in the bowl. Dunhill6 Dunhill7I used a needle file to clean up and sharpen the edge of the button and to remove the tooth marks on the stem.Dunhill8 Dunhill9I had field reamed the pipe in Idaho using a PipNet Reamer to remove the majority of the cake. When I worked on it in Vancouver I scraped out the bowl with the Savinelli Pipe Knife and took the remaining cake back to bare briar.Dunhill10To clean up the oxidation and calcification on the stem I used some Meguiar’s Scratch x2.0 and scrubbed the stem with cotton pads. It took the majority of the oxidation off and removed the calcification around the button.Dunhill11 Dunhill12I scrubbed the briar with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush to clean out the grooves in the blast finish. I also used a brass bristle brush to scrub the rim surface and remove the lava. I had to use a dental pick to clean out the deeper grooves after the bristle brush.Dunhill13I rinsed and dried off the bowl with a cotton towel. The dried and dull pipe is shown in the photos below. It is clean on the outside and the rim is “lava-less”.Dunhill14 Dunhill15 Dunhill16 Dunhill17I used a dark brown stain pen to touch up the edges of the rim and blend it in with the rest of the bowl. I scrubbed the airway and mortise in the bowl and the airway and slot with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. I picked out the slot with a dental pick and ran pipe cleaners through the grooves to clean out the debris.Dunhill18 Dunhill19I wetsanded the stem with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads as is usual and then dry sanded with 3200-12000 grit pads. I rubbed the stem down with Obsidian Oil between each set of three pads. When I finished sanding I gave it a final coat of the oil and let it soak into the rubber.Dunhill20 Dunhill21 Dunhill22I buffed the stem with Blue Diamond and then gave it multiple coats of carnauba wax. I hand applied some Conservator’s Wax to the bowl and then hand buffed it with a shoe brush. I finished buffing with a clean buffing pad and a microfibre cloth to raise the final shine on the bowl and stem. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. If you are interested in this one it will be for sale on the blog soon. Contact me and it can be yours. Thanks for looking.Dunhill23 Dunhill24 Dunhill25 Dunhill26 Dunhill27 Dunhill28 Dunhill29