Tag Archives: Oldrich Jirsa Pipes

New Life for a Beautiful Rusticated Jirsa 96 Poker/Sitter


Blog by Steve Laug

I am back to a few other pipes that have been here for a long time. You can see from the photos that Jeff took that it is another one that has been here for a long time. We picked it up back in 2017 – I can’t believe that it is almost five years ago. It is about time I got around to working on it because it really is quite nice. Jeff purchased this pipe from an antique mall in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. It had an interesting rusticated brown finish with a smooth band around the base and shank end as well as a smooth heel of the bowl. There is a carved ring around the top ¼ inch of the rim top and edge as well that is a nice touch. There was a thick cake in bowl and lava on the rim top and the inner bevel. The finish was filthy with grit and grime ground into the surface of the briar. The pipe is stamped on the underside of the shank Jirsa [over] the shape number 96. The stem surface was oxidized and had a rotting Softee bit with a lot of awful looking sludge built up around it. The stem did not have a Jirsa logo. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work. I like to have an idea of how the pipe was smoked before we got it and what the bowl and rim top looked like. Jeff always takes some photos of the bowl and rim from various angles to show what it looked like. He took photos of the stem with and without the Softee bit to show the condition. While the stem was dirty the Softee had protected it from tooth marks and chatter. He took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to give a sense of the rustication on the pipe. The next two photos show the stamping on the underside of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above.I did a quick scan of the rebornpipes blog and found a link to the Jirsa Octagonal Panel that I had restored (https://rebornpipes.com/2021/05/01/rebirthing-an-oldrich-jirsa-bent-octagonal-panel-138-billiard/). Rather than start over in my research on the brand I am quoting from that blog and the work I did there.

I turned to Pipephil’s site to see what he had on the Jirsa brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-j2.html). He had an entry that I did a screen capture of and also the following information on the brand. Artisan: Oldrich Jirsa (born 1962) makes pipes since 1994.I turned to Pipedia for more information on the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Jirsa). I quote from the article below.

Jirsa is a Czech Republic brand owned by the family company headed by the artisan Oldrich Jirsa. They use Ebonite and cumberland stems. Best Grading: SG (Grain), three stars. Symbol: stylized J coming out of an oval. I knew that I was working on a Czech made pipe by Oldrich Jirsa. The stem on the one I was working on was vulcanite and was not stamped. I suppose it could be a replacement but the fit and slow makes me think it is original. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

Jeff had done a great cleanup on the pipe. He reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and followed up with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife to remove the cake. He scrubbed out the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the bowl exterior with a tooth brush and Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the grime on the finish of the bowl and the lava from the rim top. He rinsed it under running water. One of the benefits of this scrub is that it also tends to lift some of the scratches and nicks in the surface of the briar. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He cleaned the internals and externals of the stem with alcohol, pipe cleaners and cotton swabs. He soaked the stem in Before & After Pipe Stem Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water and cleaned out the airway in the stem with alcohol. When I received it the pipe looked very good. I took a photo of the rim top and stem to show the condition. The rim top and the beveled inner edge and outer edge of the bowl were in good condition. The stem was vulcanite and there was some light tooth chatter on both sides ahead of the button. The stamping on the pipe is clear and readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole.I polished the smooth portions of the briar with 1200-1500 micromesh sanding pads and wiping it down with damp cloth after each sanding pad. The inner edge of the rim, the band on the shank end and the band round the smooth base were all polished. As I worked through the cycle of pads the shine developed with each change of pad. The pipe looks very good. 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 and a horsehair shoe brush 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 on the smooth portions stood and the rustication showed depth. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I polished the stem and built in band 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. The photos below show the polished stem. This Czech Rusticated Jirsa 96 Poker/Sitter with a vulcanite stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The rich browns of the stain made the grain and rustication come 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 multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel. I buffed the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Jirsa 96 Poker/Sitter really is a beauty and fits nicely in the hand. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 1.87 ounces /53 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes store in the Pipes from Various Makers Section. Let me know if you are interested in adding 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!

New Life for a Beautiful Rusticated Jirsa 167 Calabash


Blog by Steve Laug

I am back to a few other pipes that have been here for a long time. You can see from the photos that Jeff took that it came to us back in 2017 and maybe earlier. It is about time I got around to working on it because it really is quite nice. Jeff purchased this pipe from an antique mall in Sandy, Utah, USA. It had an interesting rusticated brown finish with a smooth band and rim top and a smooth band at the shank. The bowl was classic Calabash shape. There was a thick cake in bowl and lava on the rim top and the inner bevel. The finish was filthy with grit and grime ground into the surface of the briar. The pipe is stamped on the underside of the shank Jirsa [over] the shape number 167. The polished aluminum band is a part of the stem. The stem surface was oxidized and had a rotting Softee bit with a lot of awful looking sludge built up around it. The Jirsa logo on the topside of the saddle stem looked pretty good. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work. I like to have an idea of how the pipe was smoked before we got it and what the bowl and rim top looked like. Jeff always takes some photos of the bowl and rim from various angles to show what it looked like. He took photos of the stem with and without the Softee bit to show the condition. He took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to give a sense of the rustication on the pipe. The next two photos show the stamping on the underside of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. Jeff also captured the Jirsa Logo stamp on the topside of the saddle stem. The band is part of the stem.I did a quick scan of rebornpipes and found a link to the Jirsa Octagonal Panel that I had restored (https://rebornpipes.com/2021/05/01/rebirthing-an-oldrich-jirsa-bent-octagonal-panel-138-billiard/). Rather than start over in my research on the brand I am quoting from that blog and the work I did there.

I turned to Pipephil’s site to see what he had on the Jirsa brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-j2.html). He had an entry that I did a screen capture of and also the following information on the brand. Artisan: Oldrich Jirsa (born 1962) makes pipes since 1994.I turned to Pipedia for more information on the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Jirsa). I quote from the article below.

Jirsa is a Czech Republic brand owned by the family company headed by the artisan Oldrich Jirsa. They use Ebonite and Cumberland stems. Best Grading: SG (Grain), three stars. Symbol: stylized J coming out of an oval. I knew that I was working on a Czech made pipe by Oldrich Jirsa. The stem on the one I was working on was vulcanite and had a built in metal adornment on it. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

Jeff had done a great cleanup on the pipe. He reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and followed up with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife to remove the cake. He scrubbed out the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the bowl exterior with a tooth brush and Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the grime on the finish of the bowl and the lava from the rim top. He rinsed it under running water. One of the benefits of this scrub is that it also tends to lift some of the scratches and nicks in the surface of the briar. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He cleaned the internals and externals of the stem with alcohol, pipe cleaners and cotton swabs. He soaked the stem in Before & After Pipe Stem Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water and cleaned out the airway in the stem with alcohol. When I received it the pipe looked very good. I took a photo of the rim top and stem to show the condition. The rim top and the beveled inner edge and outer edge of the bowl were in good condition. The stem was vulcanite and there was some light tooth chatter on both sides ahead of the button. The stamping on the pipe is clear and readable as noted above. The Jirsa logo on the stem is deep and needs to be repainted with white.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole. I polished the smooth portions of the briar with 1200-1500 micromesh sanding pads and wiping it down with damp cloth after each sanding pad. As I worked through the cycle of pads the shine developed with each change of pad. The pipe looks very good. 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 and a horsehair shoe brush 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 on the smooth portions stood and the rustication showed depth. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I touched up the BC stamp on the left side of the stem with white acrylic nail polish. I worked it into the stamp with a tooth pick and then sanded off the excess once it had dried with a 1500 micromesh sanding pad.I polished the stem and built in band 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. The photos below show the polished stem. This Czech Rusticated Jirsa 167 Calabash with a vulcanite stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The rich browns of the stain made the grain and rustication come 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 multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel. I buffed the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Jirsa 167 Calabash really is a beauty and 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: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¾ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 2.08 oz./59 grams. This beauty will be going on the rebornpipes store in the Pipes from Various Makers section. Let me know if you are interested in adding 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!

Rebirthing an Oldrich Jirsa Bent Octagonal Panel 138 Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

The picture to the left is the pipe carver Oldrich Jirsa (photo from Pipephil). He is the carver of the next pipe I have chosen to work on. It is octagonal paneled pipe with smooth and rusticated finishes around the panels. The rim top is beveled inward and smooth. It is an interesting looking pipe. We purchased it from an antique mall in Utah on 03/05/21. it has a mixture of various brown coloured finishes with amazing grain around the smooth panels on bowl sides and shank and a nice looking rustication on the other panels. It was stamped on the underside of the shank and read Jirsa over the shape number 138. It was in filthy condition when Jeff brought it to the table. There was a thick cake in the bowl and lava and debris rim top and the beveled inner edge of the bowl. The acrylic stem was oxidized and had tooth marks and chatter on the top and underside on and near the button. There is an inserted briar ring around the saddle stem. Jeff took photos of the pipe before his cleanup work to give a picture of its condition. Jeff took photos of the rim top and stem to show the general condition of the pipe. The bowl is heavily caked and the rim top and edges have a thick lava overflow on the beveled inner edge of the bowl and on the rim top. The stem has grime and tooth marks on the top and underside near the button. Jeff took photos of the tenon and the briar insert on the stem.Jeff took some photos of the bowl sides and heel to show the grain that was around this bowl. It is a nice looking pipe. He took photos of the sides of the shank to show the stamping. The stamping is readable in the photos below and is as noted above. The logo stamp is also readable on the top of the saddle stem.I turned to Pipephil’s site to see what he had on the Jirsa brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-j2.html). He had an entry that I did a screen capture of and also the following information on the brand. Artisan: Oldrich Jirsa (born 1962) makes pipes since 1994. I turned to Pipedia for more information on the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Jirsa). I quote from the article below.

Jirsa is a Czech Republic brand owned by the family company headed by the artisan Oldrich Jirsa. They use Ebonite and cumberland stems. Best Grading: SG (Grain), three stars. Symbol: stylized J coming out of an oval. I knew that I was working on a Czech made pipe by Oldrich Jirsa. The stem on the one I was working on was acrylic and had a briar insert like the one in the photo above. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

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 and beveled edge lava and darkening with the soap and tooth brush. He scrubbed the inside of the stem with alcohol and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior with Soft Scrub and then soaked it in Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer. He washed it off with warm water to remove the deoxidizer. The pipe looked very good when it arrived here. I took some close up photos of the rim top and also of the stem surface. The rim top and the beveled inner edge looked very good. The stem was clean and the tooth marks and chatter were few. I took photos of the stamping on the underside of the shank. You can see that it is stamped as noted above. It is clear and readable. The logo on the stem top is also readable. I took the pipe apart and took a photo of the parts. It is a good looking pipe and has some nice looking grain and rustication around the bowl. The briar came out looking very good so I did not need to polish it with micromesh. Instead immediately worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the briar with my fingertips and a horsehair shoe brush. The product works 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.I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I filled in the deep tooth marks in the acrylic with clear CA glue and set it aside to let the repairs cure. Once they cured and hardened, I sanded out the repairs on the top and underside of the stem ahead of the button with 220 grit sandpaper and started polishing it with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I used Rub’n Buff Antique Gold to repaint the logo on the stem top. I worked it into the stamp with a tooth pick and buffed off the excess. It looks quite good.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-12000 grit sanding pads. I wiped it down after each sanding pad with Obsidian Oil. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine.I am excited to finish this Jirsa Octagonal Panel Bent 138 Billiard. 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 the grain popping all around the smooth panels and the interesting rustication on the other panels. Combining that finish with the black, fancy acrylic stem with a briar ring all work to make this a beautiful pipe. This smooth Octagonal Panel Bent Billiard is nice 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 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 55grams/1.94oz. It is a beautiful pipe and one that will be on the PIPES FROM VARIOUS MAKERS – CZECH, BELGIAN, GERMAN, ISRAELI, SPANISH PIPEMAKERS ALONG WITH METAL PIPES section of the rebornpipes store soon. If you are interested in adding it to your collection let me know. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.