Tag Archives: Monarch pipes

Recommissioning a Monarch Pat. 1989069 – 1074H Bent Ball

Blog by Dal Stanton

This nice-looking Monarch Bent Ball shape came to me along with 65 pipes in an eBay acquisition which I’ve called the Lot of 66.  The Bowl shape has a very nice feel in the palm with the dimensions an adequate: Length: 6 1/4 inches, Height: 1 1/4 inches, Bowl width: 1 3/4 inches, Bowl depth: 1 3/8 inches, Chamber width: 15/16 inches.  This pipe got Andy’s attention in the special section on my blog site called “For ‘Pipe Dreamers’ Only!” where pipe men and women (and their significant others looking for special gifts!) can commission pipes.  Andy is from the state of Maryland in the US and he and his wife attend church where I used to be the pastor – in a former life many, many years ago!  Andy reached out to me via Facebook Messenger:

I really enjoy your posts with the restored pipes, and I’m wondering what might be available now and what the costs are. I really like the Oom Paul’s (and some of the other Peretti’s), and the Savinelli from May 29. Many years ago, I had a small collection which included a Comoy, and, if I recall correctly, a Peretti and a Savinelli. Sadly, they were lost somewhere along the way. Thanks for reigniting my interest (no pun intended). I looked at your website and found the answers I needed. What can you tell me about the Monarch Pat. 1989069 – 1074H Bent Ball shape on the Pipedreamer’s page? It looks very similar to one I had many years ago, and I might be interested in commissioning it if it’s still available. Thanks!

It’s amazing how pipes become so much a part of memories and associations in our lives!  Andy and I dialogued, and he commissioned the Monarch and will have the first opportunity to acquire the Bent Ball when it is restored and placed in The Pipe Steward Store, benefiting the Daughters of Bulgaria.  Here are the pictures that caught Andy’s attention. The stampings on the pipe are distinctive: on the left side of the shank is stamped ‘Monarch’ in cursive script with swirly tail, over ‘PAT. 1989069’.  The right side of the shank has ‘1074H’ stamped which I assume is a shape number.  The stem has a dot marked on the top which I notice actually appears to be a vent – the black center of the dot is not solid but a hole.  Interesting. A quick trip to Pipedia in search of ‘Monarch’ turns up useful information.

Monarch Pipe Co. was established in Hartford Con, most likely in the late 1930 by Fred Warnke, who obtained a patent on the system pipe on January 22 1935. The company moved to Tulsa Oklahoma at some point in the 1950s, after which Monarch Pipe Co was moved to Bristow, Oklahoma. The Monarch Pipe Co. also makes E.A.Carey Magic Inch and Duncan Hill Aerosphere Pipes.

So, the question in my mind was, are pipes still being produced by the Monarch Pipe Co. in Bristow, Oklahoma?  After searching the internet, I found an interesting newspaper article from the The Oklahoman, published January 15, 1995, entitled, ‘Bristow Manufacturer Lives on Pipe Dreams Pipe Fitting As Fragile as a Smoke Ring, The Art Still Burns in Bristow’ (LINK).   Excerpts from the article are enlightening and interesting:

Monarch has manufactured pipes in Bristow for 32 years. Once it employed 12 workers and produced 5,000 pipes a month; now the workforce is four, including Austin (a manager mentioned earlier).

Monarch was founded in 1929 in Connecticut. In 1962, a Tulsa businessman who ordered his pipes from Monarch discovered his source might close down, so he bought it. He and his partners moved it to Bristow…. Some 15 years ago, Carey bought the little enterprise.

This excerpt mentions Monarch’s parent company was the E.A. Carey of Ohio, company most well known for the ‘Carey Magic Inch’ pipes which boasts of a system that produces a drier, cooler smoke.  Still wondering if Monarch currently was producing pipes, I search again, “Monarch Pipe Co.” and found an old business link from Buzzfile.com that gave information and a ,mailing address – no email or website.  I plugged the Bristow, OK, mailing address in Google Maps and found this picture of the Monarch Pipe Co.  The date of the photograph from Google is July 2012 – now six years ago. Still desiring to know if Monarch pipes were being manufactured, I decided to try one more angle.  The 1995 Oklahoman Newspaper article above said that E. A. Carey bought out the small Monarch enterprise 15 years earlier, in 1980.  I searched for the Magic Inch E. A. Carey of Ohio name and found a website: http://www.eacarey.com.  As I’ve successfully done many times in the past, I went to the sites ‘Contact Us’ page and used the email provided to see if anyone there knew anything about the Monarch Pipe Company?  I received a reply from Danielle: 

Thank you for the email.  We are sorry, but the Monarch pipe company closed a few years ago.  The woman who ran it has retired.  We do still sell magic inch pipes, they can all be found on our website: www.eacarey.com   Any pipes she made for us, we no longer have.

In reply, I went out on a limb asking if they had a Monarch Shapes Chart…. We’ll see what happens! (Addendum: Danielle responded in a few days to say that they had no information on Monarch pipes.  Oh well!)

The closing lines in the 1995 Oklahoman article proved to be prophetic.  The former manager of Monarch Pipe Co., Francis Austin was quoted:

Still, he said, Carey “realizes the stability of the smoking industry” is as fragile as a smoke ring, and is diversifying into such areas as children’s safety toys and goose down products.

Someday, concedes Austin, who’s 60, his artful pipes will be collectors’ items.

This Monarch Bent Ball is now a collectible!  The other interesting aspect of the Monarch nomenclature is the patent number given: ‘PAT. 1989069’ which is for the system evident in the fittings of the Monarch ‘System’ pipe.  I took the patent number to the United States Patent and Trademark Office site searched the patent number.  I found that the patent was approved January 22, 1935 and a diagram that is also referenced by Pipedia, showing a cutout of a pipe with the system that remains in the Monarch on my worktable. I was also intrigued by reading the full patent document submitted by Fred L. Warnke in 1931.  I clipped the header from that document and placed it below.  The first several paragraphs describes how the system would provide the holy grail of pipe technology – a cooler and dryer smoke! One last interesting item to note which I referenced earlier.  The dot on the top of the stem is a hole or a vent air regulator which is labeled #25 in the Fig. 1 1931 patent diagram.  I found this caption that I clipped from the patent document interesting as it describes the purpose of the vent and how it contributes to a ‘dryer and cooler’ smoking experience as it regulates the introduction of fresh air to the to the smoke.  I really wish I could try out some of the pipes I restore to experience these inventions in practice!As I take a close look at the Monarch Bent Ball, the chamber has light cake buildup with some lava flow on the rim, but light.  The stummel looks to be in good shape. I see no fills and only the normal grime that builds on the surface.  I’m not quite sure how the internals of this system pipe work, I’ll have to experiment to see how to clean it.  The stem has mild oxidation and some tooth chatter.  So, with a better understanding of the provenance of this Monarch Bent Ball and the technology of the patent, I begin the restoration by cleaning the internal airway and air chamber of the stem with pipe cleaners and cotton buds then I add the Monarch stem to Before & After Deoxidizer along with five other pipes’ stems to address the oxidation.After some hours, I fish the stem out of the Deoxidizer and wipe off the Deoxidizer and oxidation with a cotton pad and light paraffin oil (mineral oil).  I also clear the airway of Deoxidizer using a pipe cleaner dipped in isopropyl 95%.  The Before & After Deoxidizer did a good job – the stem’s oxidation is removed.Turning to the stummel, I begin to clear the light cake using the Pipnet Reaming Kit.  I take a picture to mark the start and spread paper towel to minimize cleaning. I jump over the smallest blade head with this large chamber and use the next blade to the largest blade head.  I then use the Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Tool to fine tune the reaming by scraping the chamber walls where the blade heads missed.  To get down to fresher briar, I then sand the chamber by wrapping a piece of 240 grade paper around a Sharpie Pen.  Finally, to clean the chamber removing the carbon dust, I wet a cotton pad and wipe the chamber.  Looking at the chamber wall – I see no problems.  The pictures chronicle the progress. Turning to the external surface, I use undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to scrub with cotton pads and I also utilize a brass brush on the rim.  After cleaning I rinse the bowl under tap water.  The rim came out well with most of the lava removed.

I decide to explore the internals of the Monarch’s mortise.  I first clean the nickel mortise airway tube with pipe cleaners and shank brushes.  The tube was easily cleaned.  After looking at the patent diagram again, mainly at figure five which shows the mortise fitting, I decide to see if it will come out.  The base appears to be threaded.  Carefully, I clamp down on the flat sided flange shown as #26, and gently rotate the stummel holding the mortise fitting stationary.  It starts a bit sticky but then gradually loosens up until it is removed.  What I’m looking at looks close to the 1935 patent diagram.  I find that #15 is loose and comes off of the main threaded insert.  I read in the patent document that this hardware was designed to enable an exact adjustment to position the stem with the stummel.  We’ll see after I clean everything and reassemble how this works.  I wanted to see if there was a crud trap at the end of the tubing near the draft hole.  I am pleased to see that there wasn’t after plunging a few cotton buds down through the opened mortise.  After cleaning and reassembling the mortise insert, it did take a bit to figure out how to work the adjustment mechanism. It was a combination of rotating the threaded insert (#14) so that the flange (#15) was loosened and could rotate a degree or so and tightened to change the alignment of the stem that would then be screwed on….  After a few tightenings and loosenings, I was able to align the stem as it should be!  The new steward will have to figure this out!  I take a picture to show the alignment. To address the stem’s tooth chatter, I first use the heating method to expand the vulcanite, thus reducing the severity of the indentations.  I use a Bic lighter and paint both the upper and lower bit.  I follow that by using a flat needle file to re-shape the button lips, both upper and lower, then I sand using 240 grit paper to erase the file scratches and to sand out the tooth chatter.  Following the 240 grit paper, I use 600 grit paper to erase the scratches of the 240.  Then, over the entire stem, I sand/buff using 0000 grade steel wool.  The tooth chatter is removed, and the button’s new lines look good. The stem is ready for the micromesh process.  Using micromesh pads 1500 to 2400, I wet sand the stem.  Following this, I dry sand using pads 3200 to 4000 and 6000 to 12000.  After each set of 3 pads, I apply a coat of Obsidian Oil to rejuvenate the vulcanite.  The stem looks good – the glossy pop is what we aim for! The stem is waiting in the wings and I now look to the stummel.  To begin, I decide to do a very light topping using 600 grade paper on the chopping board to refresh the rim lines and to remove the remaining lava traces. Inverting the stummel onto the board I only go a few rotations and I’m satisfied with the results. To remove the minor cuts and nicks on the stummel from normal wear, I use micromesh pads 1500 to 2400 and wet sand the stummel.  Following this, I dry sand using pads 3200 to 4000 then 6000 to 12000.  Well, at the beginning of the second set of micromesh pads while sanding, I spied a blemish in the briar that I hadn’t seen before (second picture below).  It was a bit too large for me to be happy with the finished restoration, so I take a little detour.  I apply a drop of clear CA glue on the spot.  I spray it with an accelerator to instantly cure the patch.  I keep the drop as small as possible so not to impact the surrounding briar.  Surgically, I file and sand the patch down with a flat needle file, then use 240 and 600 grade papers and then play catchup with the spot with the first 3 micromesh pads.  Finally, I then complete the micromesh process with the final six pads.  The grain is looking good on this Monarch Bent Ball! At this point I decide to add a stain to darken the stummel, but to give it a nudge in a reddish direction. I decide to use Fiebing’s Saddle Tan Pro Dye to do this.  For the staining process, I remove the Monarch System insert in the mortise.  I then wipe the stummel with a cotton pad and alcohol to clean the surface.  Using a hot air gun, I warm the bowl causing the briar to expand.  This helps the grain be more receptive to the dye.  After the bowl is heated, I use a folded pipe cleaner to apply the Saddle Tan dye to the briar.  After I coat the stummel thoroughly, I flame the stain with a lit candle.  This causes the alcohol in the dye to combust and to set the pigment in the briar.  After a few minutes, I repeat the process of applying dye and flaming.  I set the stummel aside to rest through the night.  It’s a good idea, and I turn out the lights. The next morning has arrived and I’m anxious to ‘unwrap’ the flamed Saddle Tan crust encasing the stummel.  I mount a felt buffing wheel on the Dremel and set the speed at the slowest and I use Tripoli compound to remove the layer.  The felt wheel, coupled with the Tripoli, a coarser compound, removes the leftover stain as well as finely buffs the briar surface.  I work the Tripoli compound methodically ‘sweeping’ the briar surface revealing the grain beneath.  With my wife’s help, I include a picture of the process.  At the end of the application of Tripoli compound, I give the stummel a light wipe with a cotton cloth wetted with isopropyl 95% to blend the new stain. Next, I rejoin stem and stummel and I mount a cotton cloth buffing wheel on the Dremel, turn up the speed to about 40% and apply Blue Diamond compound, a less abrasive compound.  Completing this, I use a felt cloth and wipe the pipe removing the compound dust in preparation for applying wax.  I mount another cotton cloth wheel to the Dremel, maintain the 40% speed and apply a few applications of carnauba wax to both stem and stummel.  I complete the waxing with a rigorous hand buffing using a microfiber cloth.

My goodness!  The grain on this Monarch Bent Ball just stands up and shouts!  As one traces the patterns around the Ball’s bowl, there’s flame grain, some bird’s eye and a rippled stream of grain that reminds me tiger fur – a landscape of grain pleasing to the eye.  The Monarch Ball shape fits naturally in the palm.  Andy from Maryland commissioned this Monarch Bent Ball and he will have first dibs on it when it’s placed in The Pipe Steward Store.  This pipe benefits the Daughters of Bulgaria – helping women and girls who have been trafficked and sexually exploited.  Thanks for joining me!

A Note of Clarification on the Monarch Apple Fiasco – Robert M. Boughton

Guest Blog by Robert M. Boughton
Member, North American Society of Pipe Collectors
Photos © the Author

Last week, a blog of mine called “Giving It the Old College Try, As a Favorite Substitute Teacher Used To Put It” [https://rebornpipes.com/2014/09/24/giving-it-the-old-college-try-as-a-favorite-substitute-teacher-used-to-say-robert-m-boughton/], about a Monarch apple with an absurd tenon contraption that screwed into the shank with more or less permanence. Really, the nice-looking briar apple, as it was designed, was the worst example of pipe engineering I can imagine – and the maker even had the nerve to patent the monstrosity.Robert1I described my great difficulty trying to keep the pipe intact with its worse than useless tenon and my eventual semi-success by removing an obnoxious, bulbous extension that protruded from the shank to connect to the stem, much as a Space Shuttle docks with a station way up beyond the limit of the Earth’s atmosphere. However, at the time, I was so caught up with the notion that the tenon was necessary as to miss the obvious. Here was my final effort, which was far from perfect in its sturdiness.Robert11After writing that I wouldn’t even give the ridiculous pipe away to anyone who purchased another one on my Web store, I became more and more fixated on finishing the project some unknown right way – using the right stuff, so to speak. I considered all kinds of possibilities, including tracking down a replacement rod of appropriate length and design to replace the original. Now that, I must admit, was stupid.

Then I showed the pipe with all due meekness to Chuck Richards, my friend and mentor, describing its imperfections and showing him the reason. But all he had to say was that the stem had a minor crack in the lip anyway, and it would break altogether in time. I figured that meant sooner than later. And so my immediate brainstorm was to go ahead and offer the pipe for free with another purchase and include both the original and a prepared replacement stem.

Still, the only real solution eluded me! But at last, by George, I got it! Remove the whole wretched tenon and replace the stem!

And so, that I did, spending hours sanding down the new stem’s tenon to fit. I even added a brass band to make up for the dorky faux band that was attached to the original tenon-lunar module piece.Robert1Satisfied of a job done right, I filled the bowl halfway with some good Gawith Full Virginia Flake and spent the next hour or so puffing away in delight. I could taste the natural sweetness of the Virginias all the way through. Minus the tenon and with a stem that attached without it, the old Monarch became a good pipe after all.

I have decided either to keep the unique but dreadful tenon as a souvenir or maybe donate it to the local space museum.

That is all.

Giving It the Old College Try, As a Favorite Substitute Teacher Used To Say – Robert M. Boughton

Guest Blog by Robert M. Boughton
Member, North American Society of Pipe Collectors
Photos © the Author

“What is the real purpose behind the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus? They seem like greater steps toward faith and imagination, each with a payoff. Like cognitive training exercises.”
— Author Chuck Palahniuk, in a Seattle Times interview, November 18, 2005

Attention, working memory, processing speed, long-term memory, visual processing, auditory processing, logic and reasoning are the primary aspects of cognitive thinking, or the ability to learn. That’s why I kicked myself, in the figurative sense of course, the other day when I finished this restoration project and discovered I had deviated from my normal habit of photographing each part of the project – in this case, the pipe before it was restored. I mean, that’s not really an important step, after all, only the key to understanding the significance of the end product.

My excuse is that I bought a lot of eight pipes on eBay, knowing they were in foul condition but rather desperately needing more ware for my online store, and in the repetitious task of documenting all of their original conditions from every angle, the one slipped past me. However, being more attentive by nature, I have managed to forgive myself, if not without some wicked self-chastising.

Anyway, I bought that particular set for several reasons: nobody seemed to see what I did, that hidden in the apparent wreckage (at least to someone with an eye to get past all of that) were an unusual Savinelli huge billiard, a Ropp cherry wood, a smooth and well-colored old meerschaum bulldog and a Longchamp pigskin billiard, all of which appeared to be vintage; the bidding was low, I thought – I won for $32.50 with free shipping, more than the price for any one of them with careful work – and I was determined to have them, without sniping, at a sane cost I was confident of achieving by scaring off the competition with a max bid that had to seem outrageous to the others who were watching. I wonder if any of the unfortunate amateurs even took another look to see who won. And, oh, the thrill of victory in the best example of the open market that is eBay, even at its downright dirtiest.

Only one of the eight, a very old corncob, was burned out. In fact, that is putting it over nicely, for there was a glaring hole in the bottom that I confirmed with a poke from my pocket three-in-one pipe utility tool, but even it offered an excellent age-browned stem and gold-colored shank plate that fit an old restore with a crack I’ve been working on. The beautiful Savinelli Punto Oro marked “Herman Marcus” – which the eBay seller misidentified in the ad as a “Neiman Marcus” – on the right shank is very badly caked like the others and has an original short stem that for whatever hair-brained reason was bent up and back and not surprisingly has a chunk out of the lip. Call it foolhardiness or even plain arrogance, but I think I can fix the chunk. The other six pipes are finished, but this account concerns only one.

My blog today is about a lesser-known pipe brand called Monarch, which was established in Hartford, Connecticut in the 1930s and also distributes the Carey Magic Inch and Aerosphere pipes. Specifically, this concerns an apple shaped sitter with a bizarre patented tenon that screws into the shank. Once inserted with great difficulty, the tenon leaves a jet engine-like protrusion with a tiny piece of the rod that snaps onto the stem. Robert1At the time I believed my greatest problem would be disassembling the pipe, as something within the complex tenon system went awry and left the stem and cap spinning out of control with no purchase whatsoever. Naturally, I consulted my friend and mentor, Chuck Richards, first. He examined the pipe, sighed, made a doubtful face and suggested I give the whole thing a hot alcohol flush to see if that might loosen things up. But he was making no promises. And so, just for backup, I emailed our host, Steve, and posed my question. He said he had encountered the same problem once or twice in the past, and the only way he was able to get the pieces apart was to wiggle the stem carefully back and forth for as long as it took to do the job. Steve suggested the process could take some time and be quite tiring.

And so I decided upon a course of compromise. I gave the pipe a normal cold alcohol flush just to remove some gunk, which it did, and as I was quick to wipe up the overflow, it cleaned the bowl and shank well also. Then I commenced the wiggling. Steve was correct. The darned thing wanted to put up a fight. But maybe I lucked out, or the pipe just felt the negative vibes beginning to emanate from my psyche, because after about a half-hour of this nonsense the stem popped off. I was sure I had broken it!

Uncovering something out of a sci-fi comic book from back in the day, before anyone from Earth at least had ever traveled into space, or perhaps more like a diagram one might see in an old tech manual on airplane engines, I grasped the bowl and shank firmly in one hand and seized the curious bulb with two fingers of my free one and tried my hardest to twist. This approach got me nowhere but hot and sweaty.
Acutely aware of how easily I might demolish the entire pipe with one fell move but needing in the worst way to get that thing out of the shank, I wrapped the extending end of the tenon in a few small pieces of cotton and found some pliers. I started with the least necessary force and worked my way up a few notches before thinking better.

Sitting down and applying all of that processing (in particular visual), logic and reasoning I mentioned in the beginning, I noted the small opening in the exposed end of some sort of rod as yet unknown to me but most certainly to become so. And I remembered something (learning) I had done before to extract similar parts jammed in admittedly more sturdy objects. Rummaging through my toolbox, I found a small screw and screwdriver and with all due respect for the frail pipe, not to mention the unknown integrity of the odd tenon, forced the screw a short distance into the hole, where it jammed as I had intended.
Reversing the turn of the screw, no pun intended, I was rewarded almost at once with movement of the rod. Soon it became loose enough to finish by hand, and then the whole, approximately two-inch, grimy rod, along with the bulbous end and the stem cap, were in my hands. I know pride is supposed to be a sin, but not in all cases, and at any rate, there it is.

The patented supertenon, which appeared not to be intended for removal in order to accomplish such trivial tasks as cleaning the pipe now and then, suddenly told me, as clearly as if it spoke the words, why I found it and the inner shank coated with vile muck accreted over the decades. Intense alcohol scrubbing with stem cleaners corrected that problem.

But then there were the bowl and rim to make right again, and I emphasize that term. The iniquitous conditions of the two, un-photographed as they may be, can be approximated by a shot I took of those areas of another pipe from the same lot:Robert2Although clearly not even the same material as the Monarch apple, the rim scorching and cake buildup in the bowl are for all intents and purposes identical.

I reamed that bowl with vigor and then sanded it, first with 150-grit paper and then 400, for about 40 minutes, until it was completely clear of carbon and down to the briar at the top. I used 220 on the rim, then micro-meshed it with 2400.

In this way time flew, and the hour arrived to reassemble the pipe. I really had no idea how that would go, but after a few tries I managed, with the rod inserted through the holes on either end of the bulb and decorative cap that was attached to it, to turn the crazy tenon as far as it would go back into the shank. Relieved that the cap was snug in place, I made several tries to line up the tiny exposed end of the rod with a space station-like dock deep inside the hollow stem.Robert3 For some odd reason I felt like Major Tom floating in a tin can. At last I heard a happy click of connection, and the pipe was as whole as it could be.
You see, that was the problem right there. Even after I buffed up the stem with red Tripoli and White Diamond, and the briar with the works, I just was not satisfied with the wicked little Apollo 13 shimmy thing going on between the stem and the tenon. My attention, working memory, processing speed, long-term memory, visual processing, logic and reasoning were all whirring at full capacity as I tried to rationalize putting this piece of horse pucky up for sale on my new Web store, but something in my subconscious still refused to learn this new trick.

Therefore, I went to the Google chalkboard to see if I could work it out by looking up “Monarch tobacco pipe tenons,” which was actually a suggested search, and found images of them. And what do you know, but right there, number one, was my hideous creature.Robert4 Take special note of two items of intelligence we can gather from this photo: the significantly greater length of the rod sticking out of the bulb, and the still far too big of a gap between the exposed rod and the connector in the stem of my Monarch. The first thought I had was to disassemble the doggone thing again and see if I had somehow made a mistake – which does happen sometimes – and perhaps the tenon was screwed in too tightly. I’m sorry to say it wasn’t.

Still, the exercise in self-doubt was a success in that without it I might not have observed the length of the tenon loose in my hand again and imagined it re-inserted into the shank without the bulb and cap in the way. I mean, I never really liked it from the beginning, let’s face it, and so the notion of tossing it into my growing assortment of pipe odds and ends was rather appealing.

I made a battlefield decision and thought, what the heck. I’ve already spent too much time on this fanciful, vintage and even patented experiment in pipe making, so what are a few more minutes? After re-screwing in the rod without the bulb and cap, I snapped on the stem – and it indeed was a much better fit.Robert5 Robert6 Robert7 Robert8 Robert9 Robert10 Robert11
Now that all is said and done, I am happy that I did the work of making this sad example of pipe craft look beautiful again and ready to smoke in some fashion. But the bottom line is, I don’t even want to keep it around to use for my own enjoyment, so I certainly won’t sell it to anyone. First thing after finishing this blog and dispatching it, I intend to remove the pipe from my online store, where I have already posted it for $35. To me that would be the same as robbery, and even offering it free with the purchase of another pipe would be a cruel joke to play on some unsuspecting customer. Besides, it would only come back to me by the power of three times three. Maybe I’ll give it to a friend who is particularly fond of apples, with a copy of this blog. At least I have made it reasonably easy to remove the so-called tenon now.

To me, this is the real purpose behind the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus. Learning.