Tag Archives: lifting tooth marks with a lighter

New Life a Drummond Imported Briar Poker


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table came to us from an online auction from Columbus, Mississippi, USA. The pipe is an interesting looking piece – a mixed finish Poker shaped pipe with some nice grain around the bowl. The finish is rusticated in vertical stripes separated by smooth stripes. The pipe is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Drummond in script [over] Imported Briar. There was a lot of grime ground into the smooth and rusticated portions of the finish on the briar. The bowl was heavily caked with an overflowing lava coat on the top of the rim. The inside edges looked to be in good condition. There was a large nick in the briar on the left side top outer edge of the rim. The metal shank end is a threaded system for the threaded tenon that is screwed into the shank. The stem was oxidized, calcified and had tooth chatter and marks on the top and underside near the button. There were not markings or a logo on the taper stem. It had promise but it was very dirty. Jeff took some photos of the pipe before he started his cleanup work. He took photos of the rim top and bowl to give a clear picture of the thickness of the cake and tobacco debris as well as the lava filling in the rustication on the rim top. He also took photos of the top and underside of the stem to show the oxidation and the chatter and tooth marks. Jeff took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to give a picture of what the briar looked like. There is some nice grain on the smooth stripes and the rustication is unique around the sides.  The stamping on the left side of the shank is clear and readable and read as noted above. I could find nothing listed on either Pipedia or Pipephil’s site on the Drummond Brand. I did a quick search of the name and came across quite a few photos of tins of tobacco and pouches of tobacco made by Liggett & Myers. It is labeled as Antique Pipe Chewing Tobacco Tin that is called The Genuine Drummond Natural Leaf Thick. Have a look at the photos I have included below (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/antique-pipe-chewing-tobacco-tin-253303793).

Antique Pipe Chewing Tobacco Tin Genuine Drummond Natural Leaf Liggett & MyersI am pretty certain that the pipe was a Tobacco Company Coupon pipe possibly that was earned by tobacco coupons. I cannot prove that but that appears to be what is happening with this mystery brand. Now on to working on the pipe.

Jeff had cleaned up the pipe with his usual penchant for thoroughness. He reamed the pipe with a PipNet pipe reamer and removed the rest of it 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 shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. I took photos of the pipe once I received it.  The rim top cleaned up really well. The rim top and outer edge of the bowl show some damage. The stem surface looked very good with a few small tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button.   The stamping on left side of the shank is clear and readable. It is stamped as noted above.    I removed the stem and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole. The stem is tapered and narrow. Now it was time to do my work on the pipe. I filled in a large chip on the top left edge of the bowl. I used super glue and briar dust to build up the chipped area. Once it cured I smoothed it out with 220 grit sandpaper until it was even with the surrounding briar.I polished the repaired area and the rest of the briar with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiping it down after each pad with a damp cloth. 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. The grain came alive and the fills while visible look better than when I began. I set the bowl aside and turned to work on the stem. I “painted” the surface on both sides of the stem with the flame of a lighter to lift the tooth marks. I was able to lift them completely on the top side of the stem. One deeper tooth mark remained on the underside.  I filled in the one remaining tooth mark on the underside of the stem. Once the repair cured I sanded them smooth to blend them into the surface of the vulcanite. I started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the vulcanite 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 Drummond Imported Briar Poker is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The mix of rusticated and smooth finishes around the bowl is quite beautiful and highlights the grain and works well with the polished vulcanite taper stem. The repaired chip on the left topside of the bowl looks much better and is smooth to touch. 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. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Drummond Poker 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 ½ inches, Height: 1 7/8 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. I will be putting it on the rebornpipes store shortly. 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. There are many more to come!

Breathing New Life into an Astleys 48 Cherrywood


Blog by Steve Laug

The third pipe from my recent pipe hunt that I chose to restore was the last one pictured below. It is a rusticated Astleys Cherrywood style pipe with a tight rustication pattern resembling a sandblast. I think the process may have been to rusticate and then to sand down the high spots until they were smooth. The texture is really well done and comfortable to hold. The pipe is a light weight with a classic look.IMG_2049The finish was in pretty good shape with a few worn spots where the stain was rubbed off on both the bowl and shank. The rim had a buildup of tars and oils that had hardened and formed a scale on the rim. The bowl had a thick cake that choked out the diameter of the bowl. The stem had been over bent to the point it hung oddly in the mouth rather than the way the original bend had made it hang. It was also oxidized and had a buildup of calcium around the button end of the stem that covered several deep tooth marks on both the top and bottom sides of the stem.IMG_2115 IMG_2116 IMG_2117 IMG_2118As shown in the photo above the bowl had been stamped on the smooth bottom of the bowl. It read Astleys over 109 Jermyn St.Under that was stamped London over 48. I looked up the shape in an old Astleys catalogue (page pictured below) and found the 48 was round Cherrywood Briar. The description stated that it was a copy of an old English cherrywood with a flat base. The correct bend can also be seen in the photo below from the catalogue.astleys-booklet_page_07I reamed the bowl with a PipNet reamer and took the cake back to bare wood. The oily, sweet, aromatic smell was more than I wanted to deal with in terms of ghosting.IMG_2231IMG_2232IMG_2233IMG_2234I cleaned out the internals with isopropyl alcohol and cotton swabs and pipe cleaners until they came out clean. I scrubbed the pipe with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap and a soft tooth brush for the sides and shank. I used a brass bristle tire brush to clean off the buildup on the rim. I then scrubbed the rim again with soap. When the scrubbing was finished I rinsed it with running water and dried it off with a cotton towel.IMG_2238IMG_2239IMG_2240IMG_2241IMG_2242I used the stain pens from Greg to touch up the worn spots on the finish of the bowl and shank. I buffed the bowl with a shoe brush once the stain was dry.IMG_2243IMG_2244IMG_2245IMG_2246Once the bowl was cleaned and buffed I turned to work on the stem. I used a needle file to give better definition to the crease on the button and clean up the bit marks on top of the button on both sides. I heated the tooth marks with a Bic lighter to raise them and then sanded the stem with 220 grit sandpaper to remove the small marks left behind. I also sanded to remove the calcium and oxidation on the stem.IMG_2247IMG_2248Up to this point I worked on the stem off the pipe. I avoided the area on the saddle where it sat against the shank so as not to round the shoulders. I cut a plastic washer and put it between the stem and the shank to allow me to work on the shoulders without damaging them when I sanded. I lightly reworked that area with the 220 grit sandpaper and then sanded the entire stem with medium and fine grit sanding sponges.IMG_2249IMG_2250There were still some small divots in the top of the stem so I removed it from the pipe and sanded them once more with the 220 grit sandpaper and the sanding sponges.IMG_2251I sanded the stem with the usual battery of micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding with 3200-12,000 grit pads. I rubbed the stem down with Obsidian Oil between each set of three pads. As the stem absorbs the oil the oxidation comes to the surface and the oil makes sanding much simpler. When I finished with the 12,000 grit pad I gave it a light buff with White Diamond.IMG_2252IMG_2253IMG_2255I gave the light spot on the shank shown in the above photo a touch up of stain and then put the stem back on the pipe and buffed the whole pipe lightly. I gave the bowl several coats of Halcyon II wax and then buffed the stem with more carnauba. I gave the entire pipe a light buff with a soft flannel wheel. The finished pipe is shown below.IMG_2256IMG_2257IMG_2258IMG_2259