Tag Archives: fitting a stem

New Life for a Peterson’s System Standard 312 with Great Grain


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe I removed from box of Peterson’s Pipes that I have to work on was a Peterson’s System Standard pipe. It was purchased from an online auction on 09/12/2019 in Front Royal, Virginia, USA. It had a smooth finish. It was stamped on both sides of the shank. On the left side it read Peterson’s [over] System [over] Standard. On the right side it was stamped Made in the Republic of Ireland (3 lines) and under that was the shape number 312. The nickel ferrule was in great condition and was stamped K&P [over] three Faux Hallmarks followed by Peterson. There was a thick coat of lava in the bowl and an overflow of lava on the rim top. The inner rim had some darkening and is damaged and slightly out of round. The vulcanite stem was lightly oxidized and had tooth marks and chatter near the button on both sides. There was also a hole in the underside of the stem so a decision would need to be made whether to replace it. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. Jeff took close up photos of the bowl and rim top to show the condition of the bowl and the darkening and damage to the inner edge as well. You can also see the thick cake in the bowl and the light lava on the rim top. He also took close up photos of the stem to show its condition as mentioned above. He took photos of the stamping on both sides of the shank. On the left side it reads Peterson’s [over] System [over] Standard. On the right side it read Made in the Republic of Ireland (three lines) over the shape number 312.  The nickel ferrule stamping is very readable and undamaged.  He took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to show the sensational grain on this pipe. It is a real beauty that has a shape that follows the grain. I have included the information on the shape number on this pipe that I picked up on researching the other pipes. It is a Peterson’s System Standard pipe with a 312 shape number. I started my hunt for information by turning to a Peterson Catalogue that I have on rebornpipes and looked up the System Standard pipes (https://rebornpipes.com/tag/peterson-hallmark-chart/). I have put a red box around the 312 shown in the catalogue page shown below. That should give a clear picture of the size and shape of the pipe.I am also including the information from Pipedia’s article on Peterson pipes. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Peterson). I have included a bit of the pertinent history here.

1950 – 1989 The Republic Era – From 1950 to the present time, the stamp for this era is “Made in the Republic of Ireland” in a block format generally in three lines but two lines have been used with or without Republic being abbreviated.

During the 1950’s and 60’s the Kapp & Peterson company was still in the ownership of the Kapp family. However 1964 saw the retiral of the company Managing Director Frederick Henry(Harry) Kapp.

Pipedia also included a section of information on the System pipes including a diagram of the sytems look (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Peterson#Republic_Era_Pipes). I quote a section of the article in part and include a link to another article on Pipedia on the System pipe.

The Peterson System pipes are the standard bearers of the Peterson pipe family, famous for the excellent smoking pleasure they provide. Often imitated but never equaled, the Peterson System smokes dry, cool and sweet, thanks to the scientific effectiveness of the original design. The heart of the System is the unique graduated bore in the mouthpiece. This makes the suction applied by the smoker 15 times weaker by the time it reaches the tobacco chamber. The result is that all the moisture flows into the reservoir and, thus cannot reach the smoker’s mouth. The Peterson Lip further enhances the effectiveness of the graduated bore by directing the flow of smoke upwards and away from the tongue. This achieves a uniquely even distribution of smoke and virtually eliminates any chance of tonguebite or bitterness. Furthermore, the shape is contoured so that the tongue rests comfortably in the depression under the opening. Each “PLip” mouthpiece is made from Vulcanite. For the Peterson System pipes to work properly, the stem/tenon has to have an extension, the tip of which will pass by the draft hole from the bowl and into the sump. Upon the smoker drawing in smoke, this extension then directs the smoke down and around the sump to dispense a lot of the moisture before the smoke enters the extension and stem. On the System Standards and other less expensive systems, this extension with be made of Vulcanite turned integrally with the stem. On the more expensive System pipes this extension will be made of metal which screws into the Vulcanite stem. This extension on the earlier pipes will be of brass and the newer pipes will be of aluminium. Most smokers not knowing this function of the metal extension, assumes that it is a condenser/stinger and will remove it as they do with the metal condensers of Kaywoodie, etc. Should you have a System pipe with this metal extension, do not remove it for it will make the System function properly and give you a dryer smoke (https://pipedia.org/wiki/A_closer_look_at_the_famous_Peterson_Standard_System_Pipe).

With that information in hand I knew what I was dealing with in terms of the stamping and the age of this pipe. I knew from the information that the pipe was made during the Late Republic Era between 1950 and the present day. Personally I think this is probably a 60s-70s pipe. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

With that information at hand I turned to work on the pipe itself. Jeff had thoroughly cleaned up the pipe. He reamed the pipe with a PipNet Pipe Reamer and cleaned up the remnants with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife.  He scrubbed the bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. He cleaned out the inside of the sump in the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the stem with Soft Scrub to remove as much of the oxidation and calcification as possible. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. The hole in the stem was big enough that I chose not to keep it. Fortunately last weekend I was gifted some new replacement stems for Peterson’s pipes that came from the factory. I had the perfect stem that was the same size, shape and style, a veritable twin of the damaged stem so I replaced the stem with a hole. I took photos of the pipe and the new stem before I started to work on it.  I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the new stem. You can see the reamed bowl and the darkening, remaining lava and damage on the rim top and the inner edge. The new stem is in perfect condition and will only need to be polished. I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank and the nickel ferrule. All are 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 decided to start my work on this one by reworking the inner edge of the rim with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper. I wanted to try and bring it back into round and smooth out the rim top and edges.I wiped off the varnish coat with acetone and a cotton pad to remove the spotty finish and to also blend in the sanded rim top. I polished the briar and the rim top with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each pad with a damp cloth. You can see a few of the flaws in the sides of the bowl and shank in the photos below. The bowl looks great though. I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the bowl sides and shank with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. I polished the vulcanite stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem. This nice looking Peterson’s System Standard 312 and a classic Peterson’s P-lip vulcanite stem looks much better now that it has been restored and restemmed. The rim top and edges cleaned up very well. The rich brown stain on the bowl came alive with the polishing and waxing. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel and followed that by buffing the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad. The polished nickel ferrule looked great. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Peterson’s System Standard 312 is a beauty and fits nicely in the hand and looks very good. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 6 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 61grams/2.15 ounces. I will be adding it to the rebornpipes store in the Irish Pipemakers Section soon. If you are interested in adding this pipe to your collection send me a message or an email. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Fitting a new stem on a Savinelli Made Stone Age K11 603 Dublin


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table was a bowl sans stem that a reader sent to me after reading my blog on a similar pipe – a Stone Age K11 [over] shape number 609 followed by Italy. His pipe is stamped on the underside of the shank and reads Stone Age K11 [over] shape number 603. From my previous work on one of these I knew that I was dealing with a Savinelli product. The pipe had been reamed and cleaned by the sender and looked good. The rim top had some light darkening around the inner edge but otherwise was clean. The finish had been scrubbed and cleaned so it looked good just a bit lifeless. Last evening while going through my collection of stems I found one that would work on the pipe. It would need some shaping and tapering but the size and shape were perfect to start with. It has a very unique rustication that is quite different – both rugged and spun that reminds me of a honey swizzle stick. The flared shank and rim top both look like rusticated plateau – faux or real, I am unsure. Overall it is a pretty pipe. I took some photos of the bowl before I worked on it and the new stem. The next two close up photos show the condition of the bowl, rim top and shank end. You can see the darkening on the front and back inner edge of the bowl and in the rustication of the rim top and shank end.The stamping is readable but faint on the underside of the shank. It reads as noted above. I turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/images/4/41/Sav_Shape_Chart_2017.jpg) and found a shape chart and the listing for the 603 shape. It shows up as a saddle stem bent billiard. The shape of this pipe is more of a Dublin shape so I do not know how to explain the shape chart. I have included the chart below.I decided to start my work on restoring the pipe by addressing the debris and darkening on the rim top. I used a brass bristle brush and scrubbed the surface of the rim top and shank end working on removing debris and darkening from the grooves of the plateau and rustication.I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to address the darkening on the inner edge of the bowl. I carefully sanded out the darkening to give it a cleaner look. It looked much better than when I started.    I rubbed the briar down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar and the grooves around the bowl and shank with my fingertips and a horsehair shoe brush. The product works to clean, enliven and preserve the briar. I let it sit for 15 minutes while I worked on the stem. After the time passed I buffed it with a cotton cloth to deepen the shine. The briar really comes alive with the balm.   The stem had a broken tenon that I removed with a Dremel and sanding drum. I flattened the stem end. I used the Dremel to shape the stem end into a tapered cone. It was rough but the shape was getting there. I cleaned up the roughened stem end with a small flat file to further shape it. I sanded it with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to shape it more. It is starting to take shape at this point. There was a gouge on the top side of the stem mid stem that almost looked like a crack but was not one. I sanded the area smooth with the 220 grit sandpaper at the same time.Now it was time to straighten the bend I the stem to match the flow of the pipe. Instead of using my heat gun I painted the stem surface with the flame of a Bic lighter until the vulcanite became flexible. I straightened it out to the angles I wanted for the pipe. I put the stem in the bowl and took photos of it at this point in the process to get a sense of the overall look of the pipe. It is looking pretty good to me at this point! I polished the vulcanite with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with Obsidian Oil after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem. This restemmed, rusticated Savinelli Made Stone Age K11 603 Italian Freehand is a beautiful looking pipe that combines a rusticated finish with a unique shaped. The brown stains on the bowl work well to highlight the finish. I put the newly finished stem on the bowl and buffed it with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel being careful to not buff the stamping. I gave the bowl multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel and followed that by buffing it with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished pipe is quite nice and feels great in the hand. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. I can only tell you that like the other pipes I am working that it is much prettier in person than the photos capture. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 6 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 54grams/1.90ounces. It will soon heading back to the pipeman who sent it to me. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over another beautiful pipe. Remember 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 generation.

Restoring & Restemming the last the 8 Peterson Bowls – Republic Era System Standard 314


Blog by Steve Laug

Jeff and I often purchase pipe bowl/stummels of brands that we like and want to restore. These have included a lot of different bowls. If you have followed us for long you know that some of these have included Peterson’s, Dunhill’s, and a wide range of Danish and English pipes. Awhile ago Jeff and I were sorting through the bowls in our collection and pulled out eight Peterson’s bowls that were dirty and stemless. A friend referred us to a contact named Silas Walls, of Walls Pipe Repair in Wallace, Idaho, USA as he seems to have a good supply of original Peterson’s stems. Our friend has had him fit stems for some of his Petes and was very happy with the work. We made contact with him and sent him eight bowls for restemming.

In the photo above I show the 8 restemmed pipes. I have marked the 7 I have worked on already with a red X). This eighth one that we cleaned up before mailing them out was a bowl that we received on 06/05/21 from a friend in Chicago, Illinois, USA. It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Peterson’s [arched over] System [over] Standard. On the right side of the shank it is stamped Made in the Republic of Ireland (three lines) over the shape number 314. The ferrule is stamped K&P [over] Peterson’s. The before photos of this bowl were on a corrupted memory card and are gone. But needless to say the pipe was just as bad as the rest of this lot.

As with the others before this one I turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Peterson) and read through the article before starting on my work. I found an interesting note in the middle of the page. I quote the pertinent section below and have highlights some important information in red below.

From 1950 to the present time, the stamp for this era is “Made in the Republic of Ireland” in a block format generally in three lines but two lines have been used with or without Republic being abbreviated.

During the 1950’s and 60’s the Kapp & Peterson company was still in the ownership of the Kapp family. However 1964 saw the retiral of the company Managing Director Frederick Henry(Harry) Kapp.

Since I found a new stem it was now it was time to work on this final bowl of the lot. Jeff had done a great job cleaning up the pipe as usual. He reamed the pipe with a PipNet reamer and cut back the cake back to the bare briar. He cleaned up the walls with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. He scrubbed the interior of the bowl and shank with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol to remove the tars and oils. He scrubbed the exterior of the pipe with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush to remove the grime from the finish. He worked on the rim top lava and darkening with the soap and tooth brush. It looked much better. I took pictures of the bowl without the new stem. It is a great looking piece of briar even with the gouges and marks on sides, top and heel of the bowl. The nickel ferrule has a few dents but otherwise looks very good. When the pipes came back to Jeff with their new stems they looked great. When the pipes arrived here I checked them out. Here is what I found. The first six pipes from the lot were flawless and quite beautiful. The last two – this 314 and a 313 I reworked previously, looked great at first glance but upon further examination it was clear that the stems were not Peterson’s style stems. The draught on the P-lip portion of the stem is on the top of the stem, but in the case of these two stems the airway came straight out the end of the stem like a Wellington pipe. I was not happy with them. I have already replaced the stem on the 313 and this 314 was the only one I still needed a stem for. Today I was gifted some Peterson’s P-lip stems and one was what I was looking for. It fit well but I would need to give it a bit more of a bend for a perfect look. With the new stem chosen, I turned to work on the damage on the top and the inner edge of the bowl. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to clean up the inner bevel of the rim and remove the damage on the rim top. Once I had finished I think that it looked much better. I filled in the deep gouges in the bowl on the right heel and the underside of the heel with CA glue and also briar dust. I sanded them smooth with 220 grit sandpaper to blend them in. They looked significantly better. I stained the sanded areas with a Cherry stain pen to match the surrounding area around the rest of the bowl sides, top and heel.I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each  pad to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. It is going to be a beauty.   I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos.  I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. Since it was a new stem I did not need to polish it. The stem was looking very good. I heated the stem with a lighter to soften the vulcanite and bent it to the shape that it needed to be for the shape of the bowl. I held it in place to let it cool and set the shape. It looked very good.  This Republic Era Ireland Peterson’s System Standard Bent 314 with a Nickel Ferrule and a vulcanite P-lip stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful grain that shines through the polished finish is stunning. As the pipe is smoked the patina should develop and look even better. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel and followed that by buffing the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Peterson’s System Standard 314 Bent Billiard fits nicely in the hand and feels great. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ¾ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 44 grams/1.55 ounces. I will be adding the pipe to the Irish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store. If you are interested in purchasing this pipe send me a message or an email. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Cleaning up a Second Peterson’s De Luxe System 8S Bent Billiard with a Sterling Silver Ferrule


Blog by Steve Laug

I have a few pipes that I am working on for local folks who either have dropped them off or who are friends that I am catching up with. The next pipe on the worktable is the second of two more that belongs to an old friend of mine who is in the process of moving. He stopped by and asked me to clean up two more of his favourite pipe. This first one I worked on was a Whidbey Hand Cut CW ’76 Freehand (https://rebornpipes.com/2022/11/11/cleaning-up-a-chuck-whitmore-hand-cut-whidbey-freehand-for-a-friend/). This second on is another Peterson Deluxe with a Sterling Silver Ferrule. It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Peterson’s [over]De Luxe. The stamping on the right side reads Made in the Republic of Ireland (3 lines) over the shape number 8S. The ferrule on the shank is clear and readable under the tarnish. It reads Peterson’s [over] Dublin. That is followed by Sterling [over] Silver. That was followed by three hallmarks – The Hibernia stamp, the Crowned Harp stamp and finally the letter “m”. It has some stunning grain around the bowl and shank under the grime. There was a thin cake in the bowl and the top and edges of the rim had some scratches and damage on both. The stem was lightly oxidized and calcified. There were light tooth marks on the surface of both sides. I took some photos of the pipe before I started my work. I took photos of the rim top and the stem to show their condition. The top and edges look quite good other than some darkening on the beveled rim top – heavier toward the back. The silver was badly oxidized but I could still read the stamping. The stem was oxidized, calcified and has light tooth marks and chatter on both sides. I took photos of the stamping on the shank and the Sterling Silver ferrule to capture its condition. The stamping on the shank is readable as noted above. The stamping on ferrule is clear and readable as noted above. There was no “P” stamp on the stem side. I removed the stem from the bowl and took a picture of the pipe to show the general look and proportion of the pipe. It also shows the metal condenser tube in the tenon end. To help identify the shape number I turned to a Peterson Catalogue that I have on rebornpipes and looked up the System Deluxe pipes (https://rebornpipes.com/tag/peterson-hallmark-chart/). I compared the shape of the pipe in hand with the shape chart show below. I have put a red box around the 8S pipe shown in the catalogue page shown below. So now I knew it was an 8S Bent Billiard.I turned first to Pipephil’s site to reacquaint myself with the DeLuxe. Unfortunately there was no information to be found on this specific line. I then turned to Pipedia’s article on Peterson pipes to see what I could garner from that information. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Peterson). I have included a bit of the pertinent history here.

1950 – 1989 The Republic Era  – From 1950 to the present time, the stamp for this era is “Made in the Republic of Ireland” in a block format generally in three lines but two lines have been used with or without Republic being abbreviated…

…With that information in hand I knew what I was dealing with in terms of the stamping on the pipe. It is a Republic Period pipe. I also wanted to be able to interpret the hallmarks on the silver band. I have captured a portion of the chart that include below that helps to clarify the meaning of each of the three hallmarks. I like the Hallmark feature on the higher end Peterson pipes with Sterling silver bands. It helps to pin down the date even further.

  • “Hibernia” seated, arm on harp represents Ireland (country of manufacture). There have been minor design changes over the years.
  • The “Harp Crowned” is the fineness mark denoting the high quality (purity) of the silver, and was used in a variety of designs until October 1992 when it was replaced by the new European Standard or Millesimal mark which gives the purity or quality of the silver in parts per thousand.
  • The Date Letter Code for the year in which the silver was hallmarked (see the chart below). In certain years a fourth hallmark is applied – for example 1966 – a Sword of Light for the 50th anniversary of the Easter Rising 1973. There were also other marks used for the fourth hallmark.

The pipe on my table had the Hibernia seated mark (Ireland) followed by the Harp Crowned signifying Sterling Silver percentage and finally in this case a lower case “m”. Each of the hallmarks was in an octagonal cartouche. The chart below helps me identify the date mark to 1978. I have drawn a red arrow to point out the 1978 mark in the chart below.

I have included the entire Hallmark chart for ease of reference show any of you be looking to date the pipes that you are working on at present.I polished the silver to remove the tarnish so that I could confirm the stamping on the silver and the date noted above. It is indeed hallmarked with the year stamp identifying it as a 1978 pipe. I took photos of the polished silver to show what it looked like after polishing. It is quite stunning. I worked over the rim top and the inner edge with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the damage and to bring the bowl back to round as much as possible. I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – polishing it with 1500-12000 grit pads. By the time I was finished the briar had a great shine. The grain on the pipe is quite beautiful. I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm to deep clean the finish on the bowl and shank. The product works to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I worked it into the finish with my fingers. After it sat for 15 minutes I wiped it off with a soft cloth. The briar really began to have a rich shine. I took some photos of the bowl at this point to mark the progress in the restoration. It is a beautiful bowl.  I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I “painted” the surface with the flame of a lighter to lift the tooth marks and chatter. It worked very well and just a few small spots were left. I filled them in with clear CA glue and set it aside to cure. I sanded out the repairs and oxidation on the top and underside with 220 grit sandpaper and started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with a damp cloth to remove the sanding dust. I used the Before & After Pipe Polish to remove the small minute scratches left in the vulcanite. I finished by wiping the stem down with a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry.   I cleaned up the condenser and then put it back I place I the stem. This condenser was metal instead of the older bone ones. It is an integral part of the System pipe.As usual at this point in the restoration process I am excited to be on the homestretch. I look forward to the final look when it is put back together, polished and waxed. I put the bowl and stem back together. I polished the bowl and stem with Blue Diamond to polish out the scratches in the briar and the vulcanite. 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 really pops with the wax and polish. The shiny black vulcanite stem is a beautiful contrast to the browns of the bowl and thick shank. This Peterson’s DeLuxe 8S Bent Billiard was another fun pipe to work on. The Sterling Silver Ferrule works as a contrast between the stem and the briar and binds it all together. It really is a quite stunning piece of briar whose shape follows the flow of the briar. The pipe is comfortable pipe to hold in the hand. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.45 ounces/41 grams. This beautiful pipe will be going back with the other pipe to my friend. He will enjoy smoking it once again in his new place. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Fresh Life for Peterson of Dublin Killarney 87 Straight Apple


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 might have taken it in on a trade for work. It has not been cleaned up all. It is a apple shaped pipe with an almost Cherry red finish (little darker but to me it is that red). It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Peterson [over] of Dublin [over] Killarney in block print. On the right side there is the shape number 87 near the bowl and no other stamping. The bowl had a thin cake and some overflow of lava and darkening on the rim top. The finish on the bowl was quite clean. The twin silver bands separated by a black acrylic band on the stem is dirty but in good condition. The stem was oxidized, calcified and had tooth chatter on both sides ahead of the button. The mortise was so dirty that the tenon would not fit in the shank all the way. It was very tight and almost stuck in the front of the shank. I took photos of the pipe before I started cleaning up the pipe. I took close up photos of the bowl and the stem. You can see the bowl and the lava and darkening on the rim top and the back edge. The stem surface was lightly oxidized, calcified and there were light tooth marks and chatter on both sides on and ahead of the button. I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. There is also a “P” stamp on the right side of the taper stem. 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 am including the information from Pipedia’s article on Peterson pipes. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Peterson)

I turned to “The Peterson Pipe” by Mark Irwin and Gary Malmberg to get some background on the Killarney Pipe. On page 306 it had the following information on the pipe.

Killarney (1949-) Entry line with smooth finish and P-Lip mouthpiece. May have either a K or P stamped on the mouthpiece; may have aluminum stinger (not to be confused with the tenon extension tube found on straight System pipes). 1949-c.1957 examples made for the US market may have any of the following COM stamps: MADE IN IRELAND (forming a circle), “A PETERSON’S PRODUCT” over MADE IN IRELAND or LONDON MADE over ENGLAND. Some early specimens stamped KILLARNEY over NATURAL (a higher grade) have MADE IN IRELAND (forming a circle). Examples c. 1986-90 feature a nickel band, which was replaced in ’91 with a shank extension of nickel band with black acrylic inlay. Fishtail  mouthpiece from ’86 although P-Lip is sometimes seen. For the current German market, the Killarney is stamped CONNEMARA

I knew that I was dealing with a pipe made in 1991 or after due to shank extension of nickel and black acrylic inlay. It has the “P” stamp on the stem side and a P-lip mouthpiece. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

I reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and removed the cake from the walls. I followed up with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife to remove the remnants of the cake still in the bowl. I sanded the bowl walls with 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around a piece of dowel to smooth out the surface. I scrubbed the bowl exterior and rim top with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the grime on the finish of the bowl and the lava from the rim top. I rinsed it under running water. I dried it off with a soft cloth. I cleaned the internals of the mortise, shank and stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners to remove the grime. Once it was clean I was able to fit the stem in the shank. I removed the stem from the shank and worked on the rim top and edges with 3000 and 4000 grit micromesh sanding pads and saliva. I was able to remove the remaining lava on the bowl. There was some darkening remained but it looked much better.I rubbed down the bowl with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the bowl sides and shank with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for 10 minutes, then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Balm did its magic and the grain stood out on the briar.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I sanded off the calcification and oxidation along with the chatter and tooth marks with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper. I started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper.  I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with Obsidian Oil after each sanding pad. I finished the polishing with Before & After Polishes – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final rub down with Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. This Republic Era Peterson Killarney 87 Straight Apple with a vulcanite taper stem has a smooth reddish finish. The rich reds and blacks of the contrasting stain makes the grain come alive with the polishing and waxing. I put the vulcanite stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel and followed that by buffing the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Peterson’s Killarney 87 Apple really is a great looking even with the bit of darkening on the rim top toward the backside. It is a good looking apple and it fits nicely in the hand. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ¾ 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 1.41 oz./40 grams. This pipe will soon be on the Irish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store if you would like to add it to your collection. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. There are many more to come!

Restemming and restoring a Vauen Dr. Perl 5049 Dublin


Blog by Steve Laug

This past weekend a fellow stopped by on a recommendation from a local pipe shop about my restemming a couple of pipes that he purchased on Ebay. Both of the pipes were Vauen pipes and both were sandblasted with P-lip style stems. The stems had the additional feature of being 9mm filter pipes. The second of these I chose to work on was the sandblast Dublin with a beautiful and deep blast. The stem was worn on the edge of the P-lip and had tooth marks on both sides. I believe it was a vulcanite stem as it showed oxidation on the P-lip surface itself. The rim top was quite clean and the blast and beveled inner edge looked very good. The finish was dirty but had a charm that was characteristic of older sandblast pipes. The pipe was stamped on the underside of the shank logo like figure that did not look like the crossed pipes I was accustomed to. That was followed by the words Vauen [over] Dr. Perl. That was followed by the shape number 5049. It was quite lightweight and would clean up quite nicely. In chatting with the fellow on Sunday he was clear that he wanted to get rid of the p-lip stem altogether and have an acrylic fishtail style stem in the same shape made for a 9mm filter tenon. I took photos of the pipe before I started working on it. I took photos of the rim top and the top and underside of the stem that came with the pipe. You can see how it fit against the shank and you can see the light cake in the bowl. It is a nice looking pipe.The next photo shows the stamping on the underside of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the parts to give a sense of the overall look of the pipe. It is really a nicely designed looking bent Dublin that will look great once it is cleaned up.I wanted to get some background on the Dr. Perl pipe by Vauen. I turned first to Pipephil’s site (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-v1.html). I did a screen capture of the information on the site. There was a great sidebar that gave some history of the brand. I include both of them below. There was also a note at the bottom of the screen capture below that has a link to the Vauen Dr Perl variant on the P-Lip pipe.In 1848, Karl Ellenberger and his partner Carl August Ziener establish a pipe factory in Nuremberg. In 1901 they merge with Gebhard Ott an other factory in town and they create a firm named Vereinigten Pfeifenfabriken Nürnberg (abbreviated : VPFN*). Shortly after Ernst Eckert, a member of the Ott family became manager of the society. During the 20th century Adolf, Ernst (jr) and Alexander Eckert (CEO in 2012) followed one another at Vauen’s head.* VPFN : “V” is said VAU in German (pronounce faou) and “N” becomes EN. Hence VAUEN.

I followed that link on the bottom of the photo above (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/infos/p-lip-en.html). I found that there was description of the Vauen Dr. Perl that had the same style stem as the pipe I was working on. I have included a screen capture of the Dr. Perl pipe below:I could not find anything in the information to help establish the date for the pipe but it is fascinating to see the look of the P-lip.

I also turned to a blog written on rebornpipes by Dal Stanton (Pipesteward.com) that I quote a section from the blog below that gives a great sense of the history of the German brand and some photos from the website (https://rebornpipes.com/2021/04/27/breathing-new-life-into-a-german-vauen-6294-p-lip-saddle-billiard-for-a-special-young-lady/).

… I turn to the question of the history of the VAUEN name? I look to the History section of the VAUEN website and again, I am impressed with the presentation. Whenever I work on a pipe, and especially when a pipe name is new to me, I enjoy looking at its history to appreciate the pipe more fully now on my worktable. From VAUEN’s website:Quality and a wealth of ideas have a long tradition at VAUEN. 160 years of VAUEN: that means 160 years of skilled workmanship and modern technology and 160 years of experience in fulfilling the individual wishes of today’s pipe lovers, and those of tomorrow.

In Nuremberg in 1848, Karl Ellenberger and his partner Carl August Ziener turned an idea into reality: Germany’s first pipe manufacturer produced tobacco pipes for connoisseurs around the world using a selection of the best wood. In an amalgamation with the Gebhard Ott pipe factory, which was founded in 1866 in Nuremberg, the Vereinigten Pfeifenfabriken Nuremberg (United Pipe Factories Nuremberg, or VPFN) was born in 1901.  Under the management of Ernst Eckert, a descendent of the founding Ott family, a company was born whose products and services would shape the tobacco and smoking culture in Europe and overseas for the next 160 years and counting.

The question about the name, VAUEN, not being a name of a person and why it is capitalized throughout is explained:

In his search for a name that would be easily remembered by all pipe lovers, Ernst Eckert’s son, Adolf Eckert, coined a new name for the company in 1909: VAUEN – a composition of the first letters V (pronounced vow) of Vereinigte Pfeifenfabriken and N (pronounced en) of Nuremberg. A brand for the future was born.

Now it was time to work on the pipe itself. In chatting with the pipeman who brought me the pipe we decided to add a small thin brass band for decorative purposes. I went through my bands and found one that was a perfect fit and matched the one I put on the billiard. I put a thin band of glue around the inside edge of the band and pressed it into place. I took photos of the new look of the pipe. I really like the looks of the band in place. I cleaned out the thin cake on the bowl walls with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I sanded the walls smooth with 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around a piece of dowel. I cleaned out the mortise and airway into the bowl and the stem with cotton swabs, pipe cleaners and isopropyl alcohol until they came out clean. I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the finish with my fingers and used a shoe brush to press it deep into the crevices of the sandblast. The product works to deep clean the finish on the bowl and shank and enliven and protect the briar. After it sat for 15 minutes I wiped it off with a soft cloth. The briar really came alive with a rich shine. I took some photos of the bowl at this point to mark the progress in the restoration. It is a beautiful bowl.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I went through my collection of stem and found an acrylic stem with a fishtail end that was a perfect replacement. It would need to be cleaned up and polished but it would look good with the bowl. I sanded out the light remaining tooth marks and chatter in the surface of the stem with 220 grit sandpaper and started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with Obsidian Oil to remove the sanding dust. I used the Before & After Pipe Polish to remove the small minute scratches left in the vulcanite. I finished by wiping the stem down with a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry.  As usual at this point in the restoration process I am excited to be on the homestretch. I look forward to the final look when it is put back together, polished and waxed. I put the bowl and stem back together. I polished the bowl and stem with Blue Diamond to polish out the scratches in the briar and the acrylic.  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 really pops with the wax and polish. The shiny black acrylic stem is a beautiful contrast to the browns of the bowl and thick shank. This Sandblast Vauen Dr. Perl 5049 Bent Dublin  was another fun pipe to work on. It really is a quite stunning piece of briar whose shape follows the flow of the grain on the briar. The pipe is comfortable pipe to hold in the hand. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ¾ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.55 ounces/ 44 grams. This is the second of the Vauen Dr. Perl Pipes that were dropped off for me to clean up and restem. I will be sending the pair back to the pipeman who dropped them off. Thanks for reading my reflections on the pipe while I working on it.

Restemming and restoring a meerschaum lined Vauen Dr. Perl 1242 Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

This past weekend a fellow stopped by on a recommendation from a local pipe shop about my restemming a couple of pipes that he purchased on Ebay. Both of the pipes were Vauen pipes and both were sandblasted with P-lip style stems. The stems had the additional feature of being 9mm filter pipes. The first of these I chose to work on was the sandblast billiard that had a meerlined bowl. The tenon had snapped in the shank in the process of the shipping and the thin filter stem was stuck in the shank. The meerlined bowl was also dirty and had a light to moderate cake on the walls. The rim top was stain dark from use and was much the same colour as the stain on the bowl. The finish was dirty but had a charm that was characteristic of older sandblast pipes. The pipe was stamped on the underside of the shank and read Vauen [over] Dr. Perl. That was followed by the shape number 1242 followed by the crossed pipes Vauen logo. It was quite lightweight and would clean up quite nicely. In chatting with the fellow on Sunday he was clear that he wanted to get rid of the p-lip stem altogether and have an acrylic fishtail style stem in the same shape made for a 9mm filter tenon. I took photos of the pipe before I started working on it. I took photos of the snapped tenon on the stem to show how close to the shank it had broken. The broken tenon was tight in the shank and would be difficult to remove.I took a photo of the meerschaum insert in the bowl. It looks good in the photo below. It is smooth and shows some darkening on the top of the insert where it seems to almost blur into the surround briar.The next photo shows the stamping on the underside of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above.I wanted to get some background on the Dr. Perl pipe by Vauen. I turned first to Pipephil’s site (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-v1.html). I did a screen capture of the information on the site. There was a great sidebar that gave some history of the brand. I include both of them below. There was also a note at the bottom of the screen capture below that has a link to the Vauen Dr Perl variant on the P-Lip pipe.In 1848, Karl Ellenberger and his partner Carl August Ziener establish a pipe factory in Nuremberg. In 1901 they merge with Gebhard Ott an other factory in town and they create a firm named Vereinigten Pfeifenfabriken Nürnberg (abbreviated : VPFN*). Shortly after Ernst Eckert, a member of the Ott family became manager of the society. During the 20th century Adolf, Ernst (jr) and Alexander Eckert (CEO in 2012) followed one another at Vauen’s head.* VPFN : “V” is said VAU in German (pronounce faou) and “N” becomes EN. Hence VAUEN.

I followed that link on the bottom of the photo above (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/infos/p-lip-en.html). I found that there was description of the Vauen Dr. Perl that had the same style stem as the pipe I was working on. I have included a screen capture of the Dr. Perl pipe below:I could not find anything in the information to help establish the date for the pipe but it is fascinating to see the look of the P-lip.

I also turned to a blog written on rebornpipes by Dal Stanton (Pipesteward.com) that I quote a section from the blog below that gives a great sense of the history of the German brand and some photos from the website (https://rebornpipes.com/2021/04/27/breathing-new-life-into-a-german-vauen-6294-p-lip-saddle-billiard-for-a-special-young-lady/).

… I turn to the question of the history of the VAUEN name? I look to the History section of the VAUEN website and again, I am impressed with the presentation. Whenever I work on a pipe, and especially when a pipe name is new to me, I enjoy looking at its history to appreciate the pipe more fully now on my worktable. From VAUEN’s website:Quality and a wealth of ideas have a long tradition at VAUEN. 160 years of VAUEN: that means 160 years of skilled workmanship and modern technology and 160 years of experience in fulfilling the individual wishes of today’s pipe lovers, and those of tomorrow.

In Nuremberg in 1848, Karl Ellenberger and his partner Carl August Ziener turned an idea into reality: Germany’s first pipe manufacturer produced tobacco pipes for connoisseurs around the world using a selection of the best wood. In an amalgamation with the Gebhard Ott pipe factory, which was founded in 1866 in Nuremberg, the Vereinigten Pfeifenfabriken Nuremberg (United Pipe Factories Nuremberg, or VPFN) was born in 1901.  Under the management of Ernst Eckert, a descendant of the founding Ott family, a company was born whose products and services would shape the tobacco and smoking culture in Europe and overseas for the next 160 years and counting.

The question about the name, VAUEN, not being a name of a person and why it is capitalized throughout is explained:

In his search for a name that would be easily remembered by all pipe lovers, Ernst Eckert’s son, Adolf Eckert, coined a new name for the company in 1909: VAUEN – a composition of the first letters V (pronounced vow) of Vereinigte Pfeifenfabriken and N (pronounced en) of Nuremberg. A brand for the future was born.

Now it was time to work on the pipe itself. I needed to pull the broken tenon from the shank but it was harder than I thought it would be. I tried to drill it out but it would not move. I painted it with alcohol to try to soften the grime on it but again no movement. I was nervous about putting it in the freezer because of the meerlining so I was left to other methods. I finally used a knife to scrape away as much of the tenon as possible. I finally used a small file and was able to pull out the last piece of the broken tenon. With it gone I sanded the mortise smooth with a rolled piece of 220 grit sandpaper until the fit in the shank was smooth.I examined the bowl and saw that the meerschaum insert ended just above the entrance of the airway. It is a meerschaum sleeve rather than a bowl insert. The bottom of the bowl is still briar. I carefully scraped out the cake on the meerschaum walls with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I sanded it with a piece of 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around a piece of dowel to make it smooth.I cleaned out the mortise and airway into the bowl and the stem with cotton swabs, pipe cleaners and isopropyl alcohol until they came out clean. In chatting with the pipeman who brought me the pipe we decided to add a small thin brass band for decorative purposes. I went through my bands and found one that was a perfect fit. I put a thin band of glue around the shank edge and pressed the band into place. I took photos of the new look of the pipe. I really like the looks of the band in place.  I restained the briar portion of the rim top and edges with a combination of Black and Walnut stain pens to match the colour around the bowl sides. It looked much better. I polished the meerschaum portion a bit as well but it has some great colour to it.I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the finish with my fingers and used a shoe brush to press it deep into the crevices of the sandblast. The product works to deep clean the finish on the bowl and shank and enliven and protect the briar. After it sat for 15 minutes I wiped it off with a soft cloth. The briar really came alive with a rich shine. I took some photos of the bowl at this point to mark the progress in the restoration. It is a beautiful bowl.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I put it in a cup of water and boiled the water to straighten out the new stem. Heated the stem and the water in the microwave for 2 minutes until the material became flexible. I straightened it out and set the stem shape with cold running water.I sanded out the light remaining tooth marks and chatter in the surface of the stem with 220 grit sandpaper and started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with Obsidian Oil to remove the sanding dust. I used the Before & After Pipe Polish to remove the small minute scratches left in the vulcanite. I finished by wiping the stem down with a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry.  As usual at this point in the restoration process I am excited to be on the homestretch. I look forward to the final look when it is put back together, polished and waxed. I put the bowl and stem back together. I polished the bowl and stem with Blue Diamond to polish out the scratches in the briar and the vulcanite. 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 really pops with the wax and polish. The shiny black vulcanite stem is a beautiful contrast to the browns of the bowl and thick shank. This Meerschaum Lined Vauen Dr. Perl 1242 Billiard was another fun pipe to work on. It really is a quite stunning piece of briar whose shape follows the flow of the grain on the briar. The pipe is comfortable pipe to hold in the hand. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 6 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.48 ounces/42 grams. The first of two Vauen Dr. Perl Pipes that were dropped off for me to clean up and restem. Once the second is finished, I will be sending them back to the pipeman who dropped them off. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I working on it.

Repairing and Restoring a Nording Nord-Coat Denmark 125 Oval Shank Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table is one I have had for quite a while in a drawer here with meerschaum pipes. Jeff and I are not certain where we picked it up as neither of us have any memory of its purchase or where we found it. I had always assumed that it was a meerschaum as well until I started working on it this afternoon. The pipe looks like a meer with some fluming around the top of the bowl and shank bottom and end. It has some coloring that looks like a meerschaum. Once I started working on it I was not so sure. It is stamped on the underside and reads NORDING [over] NORD-COAT [over] DENMARK. On the shank end it was stamped 125 which is the shape number. The pipe is a classic shaped oval shank Billiard. The orange acrylic stem was in a bag with it and had a broken tenon. The tenon itself was missing so I was not certain of the fit. I took photos of the pipe when I took it out of the bag. It was dirty and the rim top was dirty. I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It was stamped as noted above and was clear and readable.Now I knew that the pipe I was working on was a Nording that had been given a special coat called a NORD-COAT. Now I wanted to know what that was. Was it a meerschaum? I did not think so and in fact that NORD-COAT stamp made me pretty certain that it was not. It was rather coated with some kind of finish to give the pipe the look of a meerschaum. I wanted to know more so I did a quick search on the web for NORDING NORD-COAT. I am quoting what I found below.

The first link I found was to a thread on Pipesmagazine.com forum where a person was seeking information on the pipe(https://pipesmagazine.com/forums/threads/nordcoat-by-nording.15584/). I quote:

pipesharkOct 10, 2012 Bounced around a bit after I saw this, and apparently this is something that is supposed create a life lasting coating that will color similar to meerschaum but not lose it’s color for any reason. Supposedly all Nordcoat pipes should have the big man’s signature on them, and the hubbub is that if they don’t, they may be seconds. According to another post, there was a page on the Nording site some years ago that “guaranteed these pipes to color like meerschaum and provide a great cool smoke”. I read on post that claimed to have one of these pipes from 30 years ago, so they must have been around for some time. Maybe Storient or another meer expert has heard of coatings like these before. I didn’t see anything about the pipes being lower quality briar as such, but I have just discovered the subject and will continue the search. I must say that I have not substantiated this with any official sites or sources, this is just what I have seen on multiple threads of blog/forum postings, some claiming to have checked it out, but yea… I will post again if I find anything more.

That pretty much settle whether the was meerschaum or not. It clearly was not. It had a coating on the briar that would colour like meerschaum and permanently hold its colour. Nording had guaranteed  that they would colour like meer and provide a cool smoke.

I turned to a second link that was on the Google search that was on smokingpipes.com. (https://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/estate/denmark/moreinfo.cfm?product_id=404914). I quote from the description that was there.

It’s presented in a sandblasted, virgin finish with darkened portions along the rim and shank end meant to emulate the look of a weathered patina. Erik designed these pipes with patinating in mind, meant to emulate the look of meerschaum

I turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/N%C3%B8rding) and read the background info on the brand. It is a great read. There was also an example of the NORD-COAT pipe and nomenclature. I have included the photo below.I then turned to a last listing on the brand on Worthpoint – an online site that auctions of pipes (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/estate-clean-erik-nording-nord-coat-140692535). I quote:

Estate restored Erik Nording Nord-coat #2 #109 sandblasted imported briar pipe. Made by master artisan pipe maker Erik Nording in Denmark. This premium beauty is hued to look like a meerschaum pipe. This is a very collectable great smoking briar pipe.

Now it was time to work on the pipe itself. I decided to replace the broken tenon the acrylic stem that had come with the pipe. I went through my box of tenons and found a white threaded tenon that would work with a slight adjustment in length for the shank and fitting it into the stem. The white tenon would work well with the opaque colour of the stem once it was glued in place. I took photos of the tenon with the pipe and stem and have included them below.  I drilled out the airway in the stem with gradually increasing sized drill bits to open it up to take the threaded end of the new tenon. I find that working from a bit slightly larger than the airway in the stem to one that is the correct size for the tenon keeps it from chipping or breaking the acrylic stem. I used my Dremel and sanding drum to reduce the diameter of the tenon, shorten its length and remove the colour between the smooth and threaded portion of the tenon. I tried the fit in the stem and it worked perfect. I took a photo of before putting it in the stem and after. I also fit it in the shank as well. Once the fit was correct I glued it in place with clear CA glue.  I set the stem aside to let the glue cure on the tenon insert. I turned my attention to the bowl. I scrubbed it with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap. I rinsed it off with running warm water. I dried it off with a soft cloth. The grime in the finish came off quite easily and the pipe looked significantly better. The grime was clear in the sandblast grooves around the bowl and shank as well as the rim top. I put the stem in the mortise and took photos to show the slight difference in the diameter of the stem and the shank. I am pretty sure it is original as there is a faint N on the top of the stem. It was not much but it bugged me and left a bit of lip that I did not like. I took photos of the fit and have included them below.    I went through some of my Sterling Silver Bands and found one that I think will work for the pipe and the stem. It is a nice oval silver band that I will fit on the shank. I slipped the band on the shank and put the stem in place see the fit and feel of the new look of the stem. While it covers the shape number, I still like it a lot!   I touched up the rim top stain with a black Sharpie pen. I was able to blend it into the rest of the rim top and edges of the bowl. It looked much better at this point.I glued the band in place on the shank end with some Weld Bond all purpose glue. I coated the shank end with the glue and pressed the band onto the shank. I aligned the stamping on the top of the band with the shank top.I scraped out the thin cake in the bowl with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. It did not take too much to clean out the bowl. I then cleaned the shank and the airway in the stem with pipe cleaners and isopropyl alcohol.   I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm to deep clean the finish on the bowl and shank. The product works to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I worked it into the finish with my fingers and a horse hair shoe brush. After it sat for 15 minutes I wiped it off with a soft cloth. The Nord-Coat really began to have a rich shine and some colour. I took some photos of the bowl at this point to mark the progress in the restoration. It is a beautiful bowl.  I sanded out the tooth marks and chatter in the stem with 220 grit sandpaper and started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with a damp cloth to remove the sanding dust. I used the Before & After Pipe Polish to remove the small minute scratches left in the acrylic. I finished by wiping the stem down with a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry.   As usual at this point in the restoration process I am excited to be on the homestretch. I look forward to the final look when it is put back together, polished and waxed. I put the bowl and stem back together. I polished the bowl and stem with a light touch of Blue Diamond on the wheel. I polished the Silver Band with a jeweler’s cloth. I gave the bowl multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The pipe polished up pretty nicely. The sandblast really pops with the wax and polish. The shiny orange variegated acrylic stem is a beautiful contrast to the meerschaum like colour of the bowl and shank. This Nording Nord-Coat Oval Shank 125 Billiard was another fun pipe to work on. The Sterling Silver Band that I added adds a nice contrast between the acrylic stem and the Nord-Coat briar and binds it all together. It really is a quite stunning pipe whose shape follows the flow of the sandblasted briar. The pipe is comfortable pipe to hold in the hand. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.52 ounces/43 grams. This beautiful pipe will be going online on the rebornpipes soon in the Danish Pipe Makers section. If you want to add it to your collection let me know. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Cleaning up a Peterson’s De Luxe System 8S Bent Billiard with a Sterling Silver Ferrule


Blog by Steve Laug

I have a few pipes that I am working on for local folks who either have dropped them off or who are friends that I am catching up with. The next pipe on the worktable is the second of two that belongs to an old friend of mine who is in the process of moving. He stopped by and asked me to clean up a couple of his favourite pipe. This first one I worked on was a Savinelli de luxe Milano 607KS (https://rebornpipes.com/2022/10/23/new-life-for-a-savinelli-de-luxe-milano-sandblast-607ks-bent-billiard/). This second on is a Peterson Deluxe with a Sterling Silver Ferrule. It is stamped faintly on the left side of the shank and reads Peterson’s [over]De Luxe. The stamping on the right side was buffed off. The ferrule on the shank is clear and readable under the tarnish. It reads Peterson’s [over] Dublin. That is followed by Sterling [over] Silver. That was followed by three hallmarks – The Hibernia stamp, the Crowned Harp stamp and finally the letter “m”. It has some stunning grain around the bowl and shank under the grime. There was a thin cake in the bowl and the top and edges of the rim had some scratches and damage on both. The stem was lightly oxidized but there were no tooth marks on the surface. I took some photos of the pipe before I started my work. I took photos of the rim top and the stem to show their condition. The top and edges showed some damage and was out of round and had darkening. The stem had oxidation though there was not any tooth marks of damage on the surface. I took photos of the stamping on the shank and the Sterling Silver ferrule to capture its condition. The stamping on the shank is faint but readable as noted above. The stamping on ferrule is clear and readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the bowl and took a picture of the pipe to show the general look and proportion of the pipe. It also shows the metal condenser tube in the tenon end. To help identify the shape number that had worn off I turned to a Peterson Catalogue that I have on rebornpipes and looked up the System Deluxe pipes (https://rebornpipes.com/tag/peterson-hallmark-chart/). I compared the shape of the pipe in hand with the shape chart show below. I have put a red box around the 8S pipe shown in the catalogue page shown below. So now I knew it was an 8S Bent Billiard.I turned first to Pipephil’s site to reacquaint myself with the DeLuxe. Unfortunately there was no information to be found on this specific line. I then turned to Pipedia’s article on Peterson pipes to see what I could garner from that information. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Peterson). I have included a bit of the pertinent history here.

1950 – 1989 The Republic Era  – From 1950 to the present time, the stamp for this era is “Made in the Republic of Ireland” in a block format generally in three lines but two lines have been used with or without Republic being abbreviated…

…With that information in hand I knew what I was dealing with in terms of the stamping on the pipe. It is a 1978  Republic Period pipe. I also wanted to be able to interpret the hallmarks on the silver band. I have captured a portion of the chart that include below that helps to clarify the meaning of each of the three hallmarks. I like the Hallmark feature on the higher end Peterson pipes with Sterling silver bands. It helps to pin down the date even further.

  • “Hibernia” seated, arm on harp represents Ireland (country of manufacture). There have been minor design changes over the years.
  • The “Harp Crowned” is the fineness mark denoting the high quality (purity) of the silver, and was used in a variety of designs until October 1992 when it was replaced by the new European Standard or Millesimal mark which gives the purity or quality of the silver in parts per thousand.
  • The Date Letter Code for the year in which the silver was hallmarked (see the chart below). In certain years a fourth hallmark is applied – for example 1966 – a Sword of Light for the 50th anniversary of the Easter Rising 1973. There were also other marks used for the fourth hallmark.

The pipe on my table had the Hibernia seated mark (Ireland) followed by the Harp Crowned signifying Sterling Silver percentage and finally in this case a lower case “m”. Each of the hallmarks was in an octagonal cartouche. The chart below helps me identify the date mark to 1978. I have drawn a red arrow to point out the 1978 mark in the chart below.

I have included the entire Hallmark chart for ease of reference show any of you be looking to date the pipes that you are working on at present.I worked over the rim top and the inner edge with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the damage and to bring the bowl back to round as much as possible. I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – polishing it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I rubbed down the Sterling Silver with a silver polishing cloth. By the time I was finished both the briar and the silver ferrule they both had a great shine. The grain on the pipe is quite beautiful.  I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm to deep clean the finish on the bowl and shank. The product works to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I worked it into the finish with my fingers. After it sat for 15 minutes I wiped it off with a soft cloth. The briar really began to have a rich shine. I took some photos of the bowl at this point to mark the progress in the restoration. It is a beautiful bowl.   I polished the silver ferrule with a jeweler’s cloth to remove the rest of the tarnish on the silver. It is treated with a product that protects the silver and removes the remaining tarnish. It has a rich, beautiful shine.   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 a damp cloth to remove the sanding dust. I used the Before & After Pipe Polish to remove the small minute scratches left in the vulcanite. I finished by wiping the stem down with a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry.   As usual at this point in the restoration process I am excited to be on the homestretch. I look forward to the final look when it is put back together, polished and waxed. I put the bowl and stem back together. I polished the bowl and stem with Blue Diamond to polish out the scratches in the briar and the vulcanite. 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 really pops with the wax and polish. The shiny black vulcanite stem is a beautiful contrast to the browns of the bowl and thick shank. This Peterson’s DeLuxe 8S Bent Billiard was another fun pipe to work on. The Sterling Silver Ferrule works as a contrast between the stem and the briar and binds it all together. It really is a quite stunning piece of briar whose shape follows the flow of the briar. The pipe is comfortable pipe to hold in the hand. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.52 ounces/44 grams. This beautiful pipe will be going back with the Savinelli De Luxe Milano to my friend. He will enjoy smoking it once again in his new place. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Restoring a Kriswill Comfort Handmade Denmark Saddle Stem Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

One of the local pipe shops drops by pipes for me to restore from time to time. This one is a thin shank Billiard with a saddle stem. It is stamped on the left side and reads Kriswill [over] Comfort [over] Handmade. The stamping is covered by an oxidized Sterling Silver shank band. Upon examining the shank I could see that a large chunk of the briar under the band (almost half the shank diameter) had been replaced with wood putty that had been drill perfectly. The repair was very well done and the putty was rock hard and invisible under the band. The thin shank and the thin saddle band are separated by a beautiful and necessary band that will really highlight the shape and add a touch of bling to the pipe. There was a thick cake in the bowl and a heavy lava overflow on the rim top and beveled inner edge of the rim so it was hard to know if there as damage on the inner edge or top. It would be revealed during the clean up. The stem was oxidized, calcified and had tooth marks ahead of the button on both side of the stem. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took photos of the rim top and bowl as well as both sides of the stem to show the condition of the pipe when it arrived. It is a mess but still is quite elegant. I am looking forward to seeing what is under all the grime and debris.I took a photo of the stamping that was visible on the left side of the shank. It is faint but still readable. What is visible on the first line is Kriswi [over] Com [over] Handmade D. The shape number is under the silver band on the underside of the shank and is not visible.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the parts of the pipe to give a sense of the delicate look it has. It really is a great looking pencil shank lightweight.Before I started my clean up work on the pipe I did some reading on Pipedia on the Kriswill Brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Kriswill) to see if I could find anything on the Comfort Handmade Denmark line. There was nothing specific there but I found the following general information that helped to pin down a time period for the pipe.

Kriswill was one of the large pipe manufacturers in Denmark during the 1960s and 1970s, and I believe closed around 20 years ago. Their catalog cover read “By Appointment to the Royal Danish Court, KRISWILL, Kriswork Briar Trading, Briar Pipes Hand Made in Denmark.”

I also went to the PipePhil site (http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-k3.html) and found more on the date of the brand. It also had no specific photos or mention of the Comfort Handmade Denmark line that I had but it was interesting nonetheless.

Kriswill is a brand of Kriswork Briar Trading, in Kolding (Denmark) established about 1955. Some of Kriswill pipes were designed by Sigvard Bernadotte, Swedish prince and brother to the late Queen Ingrid of Denmark. He collaborated with his Danish partner Acton Bjørn. When the company went bankrupt in the late 1970s it was on a level with Stanwell. Dan Pipe Cigar & Company (Hafenstrasse 30 D-21481 Lauenburg/Elbe, Ge) bought the rights to use the name and it is Holmer Knudsen and/or Poul Winsløw who make the Kriswill line. Nørding, on its side, bought the plant and introduced a Kriswell line.

I knew now that the pipe I was working on was made between 1955 when the brand opened and some time in the 1970s when the company went Bankrupt. I know that it is not one of the pipes made at a later date by Dan Pipe or by Nording. It is a bit of an old timer.

Now it was time to work on the pipe. I reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and the smallest cutting head. I took it back to bare briar to check on the condition of the bowl walls. They looked very good. I cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife and then sanded the walls with 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around a piece of dowel.I cleaned up the remaining grime on the rim top with a damp cotton pad and was ready for the next steps in the cleaning  process. I scrubbed the bowl with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap. I worked on the rim top and edges. I rinsed the bowl with warm running water and dried off the bowl. It looked much better and was clean and well grained. There were some gaps in the putty fill between the band and the shank. I filled in these areas with clear super glue applied by a tooth pick.I cleaned out the inside of the shank and stem with pipe cleaners and cotton swabs and isopropyl alcohol. It was a filthy mess and with a lot of alcohol and pipe cleaners run through it the pipe is quite clean.I worked over the rim top and inner bevel with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper and removed the darkening very well. It came out very clean and looks very good.I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each pad with a damp cloth.  I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the bowl sides and shank with my fingertips. The product works to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine.  I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I scrubbed the stem surface with Soft Scrub cleanser and wiped it down. I was able to remove the oxidation, calcification and grime from the surface of the stem.I “painted” the tooth marks on the surface with the flame of a lighter to lift them as much as possible. I was able to lift many of them but a few still remained. I filled in the remaining tooth marks with clear CA glue and set it aside to cure.  I sanded the repairs smooth with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to begin blending them into the stem surface. I started the polishing with some 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with Obsidian Oil after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem.  This Kriswill Comfort Handmade Denmark Pencil Shank Billiard with a Sterling Silver band and a vulcanite saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful grain that shines through the polished finish is stunning. As the pipe is smoked the patina should develop and look even better. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel and followed that by buffing the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Kriswill Comfort Pencil Shank Billiard fits nicely in the hand and feels great. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 6 inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 27 grams/.95 ounces. I will be sending the pipe back to the pipe shop soon and look forward to hearing what he thinks. If you are interested in purchasing this pipe send me a message or an email. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.