Blog by Steve Laug
This is another pipe that I have taken out of my personal collection as I just do not use it too much. Without thinking about it too long you can tell by looking at it that it is a classic Kriswill shaped pipe with some nice grain around the bowl and their snowflake logo. It is another pipe that I smoked solely Virginia tobaccos in so it is very clean. The airway in the shank and the mortise were quite clean. The smooth rim top and edges were in excellent condition. The smooth finish was very clean but dull and quite lifeless. It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Kriswill [over] Danish Saga. On the right side of the shank it is stamped with the shape number 143. On the underside of the shank near the stem/shank joint it is stamped Made in Denmark. The bowl was quite clean with slight darkening to the inner edge of the bowl at the back. The vulcanite saddle stem is in good condition with some light tooth chatter ahead of the button on both sides. I took photos of the pipe before I did my clean up work on it. I took a photo of the bowl and rim top to verify the description above. I also took photos of the stem surface showing the light chatter on either side.I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It is faint in spots but is still readable as noted above. I took the stem off the bowl and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of proportion of the pipe. It is a beauty. I turned to Pipephil’s site for a quick overview of the brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-k3.html). I have included a screen capture of the brand below. From that I knew that the pipe I was working on was post 1970 because of the stamping and the star on the stem.There was also a side bar that gave further information on the brand. It established an end date for the pipe I was working on. It was made before the late 1970s when the company went bankrupt. I knew that it was made between 1970-1978/79. I quote below
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.
Pipedia has a great history write up on the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Kriswill). It gives a great summary of the history. There were several shape charts there and there was not a shape 143 but there was a 43 that was identical. With that out of the way it was time to work on the pipe. Now it was time to work on the pipe. I cleaned up the light cake in the bowl with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I sanded the bowl walls with a piece of dowel wrapped in 220 grit sandpaper.I cleaned the mortise and airways in the shank and stem with cotton swabs, pipe cleaners and isopropyl alcohol to remove the debris and tars from my smoking. You can see that it was not too bad as I tend to keep my pipes clean.I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit sanding pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the briar with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for 15 minutes and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The photos show the bowl at this point in the restoration process. Since the stem was in quite good condition other than tooth chatter I polished it with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I rubbed it down between pads with Obsidian Oil. It is a beautiful stem. I am excited to put the final touches on this Danish Made Kriswill Danish Saga 143 Pick Axe. I put the pipe back together and buffed it with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I hand buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like with beautiful mixed grain all around it. Added to that the polished black vulcanite stem combined with the bowl and make a stunning pipe. This smooth Kriswill Danish Saga 143 is great looking and the pipe feels great in my hand. It is light and well balanced. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 6 inches, Height: 2 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: 5/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 25 grams/.88 ounces. It is a beautiful pipe that I will soon be putting on the rebornpipes store in the Danish Pipe Makers section. If you are interested in adding it to your collection send me an email or a message. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.