Tag Archives: replacing a broken tenon

Good to know I can fix my foul ups! Replacing a Broken Tenon on a Ronson Centenary Bulldog


Blog by Steve Laug

I went back and revisited the blog/review I wrote on this pipe back in 2013. I am including the link (https://rebornpipes.com/2013/02/15/review-of-a-ronson-centenary-bulldog/) and the first paragraph of the review below.

I picked this pipe up for a really cheap price on EBay. It came in a beautiful handmade wooden box lined with dark blue velvet on the inside of the box and the lid. The lid also has the golden Ronson logo. Ronson is famous for the lighters that they make but after receiving and smoking this beauty I would also say they make a fine pipe. The pipe came with a leather pipe sock and a certificate of authentication for the Centenary version of the pipe. The workmanship on this pipe is very nice. I have smoked it quite a bit since that time and it is a great smoke. Since I had the day off today I decided to also write a review on this one. The length of the pipe is 5.8 inches and the bowl height is 2 inches. The chamber diameter is .8 inches and depth is 1.8 inches. It is a large pipe but weighs 78 grams. It is a good fit in the hand. The overall shape is something like a bent bulldog. There is a sterling silver band on the shank with sheaves of laurels. The stamping is on the sides and the bottom of the triangular shank. It is stamped on the left side Ronson using the Ronson logo type and on the right side 47. On the underside of the shank it is stamped RONSON over CENTENARY over 1896-1996 and surrounded by Laurels. That dates the pipe to 1996. It came to me unsmoked.

I am including several photos of the pipe from the review blog. The first is the pipe in its case with the certificate. The second shows what I saw when I took it out of the case. It really is a nice looking pipe. From the title of the blog you can surmise that the pipe and I had a mishap that left the acrylic tenon snapped off in the shank. You can probably imagine the sick feeling I had when I figured out that it had happened. It was resting safely in its box and bag so I figured all was fine. I went to move it when we had our basement flood two weeks ago and the box slipped out of my hands and hit the floor. I figured that the box and bag would have protected the pipe so I did not even check it. I retrieved it and carried it upstairs to my temporary work table in our dining room. I was oblivious to any issues at this point. I let it sit for about a week and then thought I might list it on the store as I just do not smoke it enough. I opened the box and the bag to inspect it. I remembered that I had cleaned it before putting it away and it was pristine. When I opened the bag the pipe came out in two parts in my hand. The tenon had snapped off in the shank with almost a clean break. I was sick to my stomach when I saw what I had done.I took out the handy drywall screw that I keep at my work table for just this kind of extraction work. I carefully turned the screw into the airway of the broken tenon in the shank and said a quick prayer and wiggled the tenon out of the shank! Whew! I was thankful that it was not stuck in the shank. Now the work could begin. I went through my can of Delrin tenons and found one that was a proper fit. I would need to adapt it to fit the stem but the fit in the shank was perfect. I took some photos with the tenon in the shank to show the fit. I used my Dremel and sanding drum to remove the ridge in the middle of the tenon and set it in the shank. I also flattened the broken tenon face on the stem. I was able to smooth it out so the first step in fitting the new tenon was complete. The shank portion was complete. Now I would need to drill out the airway in the stem to receive the new tenon and then reduce the diameter of the tenon to fit the newly drilled airway.I set up my cordless drill to open the airway. I started with a bit slightly larger than the existing airway and drilled it ½ inch into the stem. I did not want  to go too far and come out on the top of the stem. I worked through several bits, moving through them until I got to the largest that would safely work in this stem – 11/64 of an inch. Drilling a stem this way requires carefully moving forward so as not to angle the drill bit. I use the existing airway as the path and rigorously hold to that with each new bit.Once the path was open to the diameter I could safely drill in the stem I turned my attention to reducing the diameter of the portion of the new tenon that would fit in the airway. I used the Dremel and sanding drum to carefully take down the diameter. I took a photo of the shaped tenon with a new unshaped tenon so you can get a feel for what I had to do for the fit. I know it would be much cleaner if I had a lathe but I don’t so I use what I have. I cleaned up the shape with a small file and repeatedly checked it in the airway. I wanted to have a snug fit but I also needed to account for the addition of the glue. Once all was aligned I checked the fit of the stem against the shank end. I wanted to make sure that all was lined up. I marked the top of the tenon once I had the fit correct. I removed it from the stem and slid a pipe cleaner in the stem and tenon to make sure the glue did not seep into the airway. I painted the surface with black super glue and pushed it into the stem. I was careful to line my mark up on the top of the new tenon so the fit would be correct.I wiped excess glue off the stem end and checked the fit of the stem to the shank. I like the way it lined up. I took some photos of the fit and then removed the stem and set it aside to allow the glue to cure. I made a few minor adjustments to the tenon so the fit was better and then polished the saddle portion of the stem with micromesh sanding pads. I dry sanded it with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiped it down after each pad with an Obsidian Oil impregnated cloth. I gave it a deeper polish with Before & After stem polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final wipe down with Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. I was finished with the repair and put the pipe back together. It actually looked very good and the repair was a perfect fit against the shank. I was pleased with the fit. I buffed the stem with a microfiber cloth to give it a rich shine. I buffed the bowl the same way and took photos of the finished pipe that I have included below. The tenon repair went very well and the pipe is back to being fully functional. Thanks for walking through the tenon replacement with me.

Replacing a Broken Tenon on a New, Unsmoked L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Fiammata 1 Egg Grade Hand Made in Italy Freehand


Blog by Steve Laug

Last week I received a call from a local Vancouver Pipe Shop that I do repairs for regularly. The Fellow on the line said he needed my help with a Brand New Pipe he had in hand. He had taken the pipe out of its package and turned the stem to have the tenon snap in the shank. He was very shaken as I could hear from his voice. He said that the pipe was a beautiful L’Anatra Freehand with a plateau rim top. The pipe was stamped on the underside of the shank and read L’Anatra [over] dalle Uova d’Oro [over] Fiammata followed by a single egg. Underneath that it was stamped Hand Made In Italy. He said he would courier the pipe over to me so I could replace the tenon. I have included photos of the pipe when it arrived so you could see what I was going to deal with. It is truly a stunning piece of briar. I had to laugh as he had sent it in a Dunhill pipe box and included the original price tag on the pipe. The price was high enough to sufficiently spook me but then again I have worked on quite few pipes like this. I took photos of the rim top to show the clean bowl and the pretty plateau rim top. The egg shaped look of the rim top from the top was quite beautiful. I also took photos of the stem to show that the tenon had snapped off almost flush against the end of the stem.I rotated the bowl and took photos of the stamping on the shank. It was clear and readable as noted above.I decided to start my work on the pipe by pulling the tenon. The first two photos show the snapped tenon. The first shows that it snapped very close to the end of the stem. The second shows the broken tenon firmly stuck in the shank. All my normal methods for pulling a broken tenon did not work – it was stuck fast. I put the bowl in the freezer while I had a coffee. When I finished the coffee I tried to pull the tenon again with the screw and it came out very easily. I used a Dremel and sanding drum to remove the fragments of the broken tenon on the stem face. I went through my tenons and found one that would fit the shank. I put the tenon in the shank and took some photos of the fit. It was looking very good. Now it was time to work on replacing the broken tenon. I drilled out the smoothed face of the stem with a cordless drill and a bit roughly the size of the airway in the stem. I find that this helps to center the drilling. I worked my way through 3 drill bits up to 15/64s which is the largest size drill bit that I could safely use on this stem.I reduced the diameter of the portion of the replacement tenon to fit the newly drilled airway. I started with the Dremel and sanding drum and cleaned up the fit with a pair of files. Once I was finished the fit in the new opening on the stem was snug. I shortened the length of the tenon to fit the stem depth. I took a photo of the newly shaped tenon along with a new one. You can see the difference in the length and in the stepped down portion that will go in the stem.
I turned it into the stem and took photos to show the fit in the stem. It looks really good. Still polishing to do at this point as well as gluing the tenon in the stem.
I fit a pipe cleaner in the stem and then coated the shaped tenon end with black CA glue and pressed it into the drilled airway in the stem. I set it aside to let the glue harden.The bowl was in excellent new condition and did not need any attention. I think it has a thin coat of shellac or varnish so it still had its new pipe shine. I polished the newly fit tenon with micromesh sanding pads to smooth it out and give it a shine. It really is a nice looking pipe. This Italian Hand Made L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Fiammata 1 Egg Grade Freehand turned out to be a beautiful pipe. The finish on the briar is beautiful and the grain is quite stunning around the bowl and shank. I put the pipe back together and buffed it lightly with some carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine and hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like with the polished black acrylic stem. This classic looking Freehand L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Freehand 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 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 5/8 inches wide x 2 ¼ inches long, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 77 grams/2.72 oz. It is a beautiful pipe and another one that will be heading back to the Vancouver Pipe Shop after replacing the broken tenon.Thanks for walking through the tenon replacement with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog. 

Replacing a tenon and restoring a House of Robertson Rusticated Dublin


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table is a House of Robertson Rusticated Dublin with a tapered, vulcanite Bite Through stem. The rustication on the briar is very tactile and deep. There are grooves around the bowl and shank and those have been deeply rusticated. The pipe is stamped on the left side of the diamond shank and reads House of [over] Robertson. It really is a beautiful pipe and the rustic finish works very well with the diamond twin bore saddle stem. The fellow who sent it to me is a previous customer and in his box were two pipes with a snapped tenon – the Radice (which I have repaired already) and this House of Robertson. This one was quite dirty with a thick cake in the bowl and overflowing onto the rim top. There was some burn damage on the inner edge of the rim around the bowl and the pipe was dull and dusty. The tenon had snapped off cleanly at the shank end with no damage to the briar. The stem had tooth marks on both the top and underside ahead of the button and was also dirty. I took some photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and inner edge. You can see the damage on the inner edge of the rim. It will become more evident once the bowl has been reamed and cleaned. The photos of the stem show the tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button.I took photos of the stamping on the left side of the diamond shank to capture how the classic House of Robertson signature looked.House of Robertson pipes were made by Thayne Robertson in Boise, Idaho. He did some beautiful work and all had the etched stamp on them. I have worked on many of these pipes over the years and done the research on the brand previously. Here is a link to one of the pipes where I have included background information (https://rebornpipes.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=60954&action=edit&classic-editor).

“House of Robertson” was in business for many years, but alas, closed their doors in 1999. They were located in Boise, Idaho. They are noted for making rather large and interesting pipes. Thayne Robertson was a Master Mason, AF & AM, and started the shop about 1947 and his son Jon started working there in 1970 when he finished college, along with Thayne’s daughter. Thayne and his son started making the big pipes at that time, and made them together until 1987 when Thayne passed away. Jon kept the store and his sister moved on to other things. The House of Robertson appears to have closed around 1999. https://pipedia.org/wiki/Robertson

I began my work on this pipe by pulling the broken tenon from the shank. I generally use a dry wall screw and twist it into the airway of the broken tenon and wiggle it free. This one was stuck. I put it in the freezer while I had lunch and afterward it came out quite easily. I went through my replacement tenons and found one that would work on this stem. I sanded the broken end of the tenon remaining on the stem with a sanding drum on my Dremel. I also sanded the diameter of the new tenon at the same time to get a good fit in the shank. I took photos of the tenon in the shank at this point to show the fit. I drilled out the airway on the stem with successively larger drill bits to accommodate the tenon. The last bit was ¼ inch which is perfect for the tenon. I slipped the stem over the tenon and took photos of the pipe at this point. It looks very good. With that done I turned my attention to the bowl. I reamed it with a PipNet reamer and took the cake back to briar. I cleaned up the remnants with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife. I sanded the bowl walls with a piece of dowel wrapped with 220 grit sandpaper. I cleaned up the rim top with a brass bristle wire brush to remove the lava in the sandblast and a bit of the burn damage on the inner edge of the bowl.I cleaned out the internals on the stem and shank with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol until they were clean.I rubbed down the bowl with Before & After Restoration Balm to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I worked it into the blast with a horsehair shoe brush. I let it sit and do its magic for 10 minutes and then buffed it off with a soft cloth.I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the vulcanite stem. I glued the new tenon in the shank with black super glue. While it cured, I “painted” the surface of the vulcanite stem with the flame of a lighter to lift the tooth chatter and marks. Many of them lifted significantly with the heat. Those that remained I filled in with black super glue and set the stem aside to cure. Once it had cured I flattened out the repairs with a small flat file. I sanded them with 220 grit sandpaper to further flatten them out and blend them into the surrounding area. I started polishing the stem with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the vulcanite bite through stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with Obsidian Oil. I finished the polishing with Before & After Stem Polishes – both Fine and Extra Fine. I wiped the stem down with a cloth impregnated with Obsidian Oil to protect and give the deep shine to the stem. I was happy to be finished with this beautiful House of Robertson Rusticated Diamond Shank Dublin. The vulcanite stem fit well and looked good with the rich finish of the rusticated bowl and shank. I lightly buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel and gave the bowl and shank multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax. I buffed it with a clean buffing wheel to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The House of Robertson’s Dublin is a great looking pipe that has an amazing looking rustication. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outer Diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Diameter of the chamber: ¾ of and inch. The weight of the pipe is 42 grams/1.48 ounces. I will be packing it up to send back to my friend in Idaho along with the first pipe – the Radice Silk Cut Billiard. Thanks for reading the blog.

Replacing a tenon and restoring a Radice Silk Cut Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table is a Radice Sandblast Billiard with a faux Bamboo shank. The briar has been carved to look like a piece of Bamboo but is actually briar. The pipe is stamped on the heel and reads Radice [over] Silk Cut and on the underside of the shank end it reads Hand [over] Made in Italy. It really is a beautiful pipe and the combination of “Bamboo” and the sandblast works really well the tapered acrylic stem. The fellow who sent it to me is a previous customer and in his box were two pipes with a snapped tenon – the Radice and a House of Robertson. This one was quite dirty with a thick cake in the bowl and overflowing onto the rim top. There was some burn damage on the inner edge of the rim at the back of the bowl and the pipe was dull and dusty. The tenon had snapped off cleanly at the shank end with no damage to the briar. The stem had tooth marks on both the top and underside ahead of the button and was also dirty. I took some photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and inner edge. You can see the damage on the back inner edge of the rim. It will become more evident once the bowl has been reamed and cleaned. The photos of the stem show the tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button.I took photos of the stamping on the heel of the bowl and the shank end to capture how it looked.I began my work on this pipe by pulling the broken tenon from the shank. I generally use a dry wall screw and twist it into the airway of the broken tenon and wiggle it free. This one came out quite easily. I went through my replacement tenons and found one that would work on this stem.I sanded the broken end of the tenon remaining on the stem with a sanding drum on my Dremel. I also sanded the diameter of the new tenon at the same time to get a good fit in the shank. I took photos of the tenon in the shank at this point to show the fit. I drilled out the airway on the stem with successively larger drill bits to accommodate the threaded end of the tenon. The last bit was ¼ inch which is perfect for the tenon. I slipped the stem over the tenon and took photos of the pipe at this point. It looks very good. With that done I turned my attention to the bowl. I reamed it with a PipNet reamer and took the cake back to briar. I cleaned up the remnants with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife. I sanded the bowl walls with a piece of dowel wrapped with 220 grit sandpaper. I cleaned up the rim top with a brass bristle wire brush to remove the lava in the sandblast and a bit of the burn damage on the back inner edge of the bowl.I cleaned out the internals on the stem and shank with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol until they were clean.I rubbed down the bowl with Before & After Restoration Balm to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I worked it into the blast with a horsehair shoe brush. I let it sit and do its magic for 10 minutes and then buffed it off with a soft cloth. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the acrylic stem. I glued the tenon in the stem with Black Super Glue. While it cured I worked on the tooth marks in the stem.I cleaned up the tooth marks with alcohol and a cotton swab. I filled them in with black super glue and set it aside to cure.Once it had cured I flattened out the repairs with a small flat file. I sanded them with 220 grit sandpaper to further flatten them out and blend them into the surrounding area. I started polishing the stem with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the acrylic stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the stem down after each pad with a damp cloth. I finished the polishing with Before & After Stem Polishes – both Fine and Extra Fine. I wiped the stem down with a cloth impregnated with Obsidian Oil to protect and give the deep shine to the stem. I was happy to be finished with this beautiful Radice Silk Cut Billiard. The stem fit well and looked good with the rich finish of the sandblast bowl and faux bamboo shank. I buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel and gave the bowl and shank multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax. I buffed it with a clean buffing wheel to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The Radice is a great looking pipe that ticks all of my boxes. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 5 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outer Diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Diameter of the chamber: 7/8 of and inch. The weight of the pipe is 48 grams/1.69 ounces. I will be packing it up to send back to my friend in Idaho once I finish the second pipe he sent. Thanks for reading the blog.

This Greenwich House Antique Imported Briar Crowned Pot Turned into a Nightmare


Blog by Steve Laug

Sometimes when I start working on a pipe there is can be a sense of gloom or expectant trouble. That was the case with this one. I thought it would be a straightforward clean up and restoration. Little did I know what lay ahead for me in this restoration. Time would tell and I would share it here with you my readers. It started as usual. I recognized the brand on this pipe but could not remember any of the details. Jeff picked this pipe up from an antique store in Ogden, Utah, USA back in 2019. It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Greenwich House [arched over] Antique and on the right side Imported [over] Briar. It was the Greenwich House tag that grabbed my attention. You know how sometimes a name just sits on the edge of your memory beyond your reach but you still know it? That is what this name did to me. The finish is quite dirty with a cake in the bowl and lava overflow on the rim top. The worm trails on the sides and base reminded me of a Custom-Bilt but a bit more smooth. The crowned rim top was more elegant. The saddle style stem was old vulcanite and other than deep tooth marks it was quite clean, Jeff took some photos of the pipe before he started. He took close up photos of the rim top, bowl and stem to give a better picture of what he was seeing as he prepared to clean it up. You can see the cake in the bowl and the lava on the rim top. The inner edge appears to be burned and damaged but it was hard to tell for sure. The stem had some deep tooth marks on both sides just ahead of the button and some light calcification at the sharp edge.Jeff took his characteristics photos of the bowl sides and heel to give a clear picture of the grain around the bowl and the style of the worm trails carved into the sides and heel. It is a nice piece of briar.The stamping was readable though a little faint on the left side of the shank. It read Greenwich House arched over Antique on the left. On the right side it was very clear and read Imported [over] Briar.I turned first to my blog on a previous restoration of a Greenwich House pipe. I had worked on one that was stamped Thoro-Kleen, a metal pipe (https://rebornpipes.com/2016/02/24/a-piece-of-art-deco-greenwich-house-thoro-kleen/). I read through that blog and have included a pertinent piece of information on the brand below.

According to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Thoro-Kleen) the Greenwich House Thoro-Kleen was a metal pipe system from the same family as the Roybrooke, Comet, and Original Gridiron pipes, and parts from all are believed to be interchangeable. The pipes were sold by the Greenwich House Corporation, located in 1947 at 939-M 8th Avenue, N.Y. 19, N.Y…

From that I knew it was an American Made pipe that had been carved for or by a company known as Greenwich House Corporation in New York City.

I turned to the listing of American Brands on Pipedia to see if there was a listing for the Greenwich House itself (https://pipedia.org/wiki/American_Pipe_Brands_%26_Makers_G_-_H). I found that there was not an article but the list of makers identified the brand and said that The Antique was made of Aged Algerian Briar. One more piece fell in place. The pipe I was working on was stamped Antique so I now knew the source of the Imported Briar.

But I still wanted a bit more information so I did a Google search and was taken to pipes made by Greenwich House on smokingpipes.com and other sites. Worthpoint, an auction site had several and also had one stamped Antique (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/vintage-greenwich-house-carved-1992675965). I have included the description from the sale item below as it is quite descriptive of the pipe in my hands.

Vintage Greenwich House Carved Antique Aged Algerian Tobacco Pipe. Good condition. Measures about 6.25″ long.

It is similarly stamped as mine and also similarly sized. Now it was time to work on the pipe itself. Jeff had cleaned up this nicely grained Pot with his usual pattern. He reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and then cleaned up the inside of the bowl with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. He scrubbed the exterior of the bowl and shank with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush to remove the grime on the rim top and bowl. He cleaned the internals of the shank and stem with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol until the airways were clean and the pipe smelled fresh. The pipe looked much better once the bowl and stem were clean. He scrubbed the stem with Soft Scrub to remove the oxidation and then let it soak in Before & After Pipe Stem Deoxidizer. He rinsed it with warm water when he took out of the soak. Before I started my part of the work I took photos of the pipe. I took close up photos of the bowl and the rim top to show the condition. The photo clearly shows the burn damage to the inner edge and the rim top at the back of the bowl. You can also see the roughening of the rest of the inner edge and rim top. It was going to take some work to bring it back. I also took photos of both sides of the stem to give a sense of the condition of both sides at the button. There is deep tooth marking and damage on both sides ahead of the button. I took a photo of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It was readable but was more faint on the left than the right side. It read as noted above.I removed the stem from the shank and saw to my chagrin a stinger. I fiddled with it a bit to see if it was pressure fit or screwed into the tenon. There was no give to it. (This portends what is ahead, keep reading.) I set the stem down with the bowl and took a photo to give a general look at the proportions of this pipe.I started work on this one by using a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to clean up the inner edge of the bowl and the rim top at the back. I was able to clean and reshape the bowl by slowly working through the process. So far the restoration was going well.I polished the bowl and rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiped down the bowl after each sanding pad. 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 horse hair shoe brush 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 Balm did its magic and the grain stood out.   So far so good! I filled in the deep gouges on the top and underside of the stem and set it aside for the repairs to cure.After the repairs cured things took a horrible turn! If you have read this blog for long you know how much I dislike metal stingers. I find that they indeed condense moisture and fill the shank with horrendous muck. Soooo… I decided I would try to remove this one and give the stem a thorough cleaning. I have found that most stingers are either threaded and screwed into the tenon or are pressure fit. Either way a little heat loosens the glue or gunk that hold it tight and it is easily removed.

Well… the heat did absolutely nothing with this one. It did not twist or wiggle free. It was solid with or without heat… or cold for that matter. I was frustrated at this point and tried to pull it with pliers and the “wicked” thing snapped off! Now that usually does not matter either. I can easily drill it out with a small bit.

Again not so!! The remaining tube went well beyond the saddle on the stem. I drilled and drilled then filed the edges to smooth it out. At this point I should have just left it. But I DID NOT DO THAT. NO! I tried to pull out the remnant of the tube with a small file. And then a chunk of the tenon cracked off. You can see the offending tube in the tenon stubbornly laughing at me. Arggh… This was becoming much more of a  problem. Each step I took to remedy it made it actually worse. Now I would need to cut off the remaining tenon and the drill the stem and make a new tenon for it. OH MY! THIS IS NOT WHAT I WANT TO DO!!

I got out my hacksaw and carefully cut all the way around the broken tenon. I purposely did not cut the tube as I wanted to see how far into the stem it actually went. I pulled it out with a pair of pliers and took a photo of the length of the offending tube once it was free of the airway. You might laugh at this point and I invite that. This was a lot of work to go to just to clean out the airway in the stem. But now I could replace the tenon. I went through my tenons and had one that was a close fit to the shank of the pipe. I would need to drill out the stem to take the threaded replacement tenon but I was hoping that this part would proceed without more things going awry. I started drilling with my cordless drill and a bit slightly larger than the airway in the stem. I continued going through various bits up to ¼ inch which was the size I would need to receive the threaded tenon end with some modifications. You will notice the repairs to the deep tooth marks still have not been smoothed out.I modified the threaded tenon with a Dremel and sanding drum. I removed the should on the middle of the tenon and reduced the diameter of the threaded portion so that I could glue it in place in the stem. I cleaned up the edge between the thicker portion and the threaded portion with a flat rasp to make the fit smooth when inserted in the stem. I inserted it in the stem and took a photo.Before gluing the tenon I the stem I put all the parts together to make sure that everything lines up correctly. It looks good so I take photos to show it at this point in the process. With the alignment correct I coated the threaded end of the tenon with black super glue and pushed the tenon in place in the stem. I set the stem aside to let the glue cure and went and had a cup of coffee with Irene. I needed to lick my wounds a bit on this whole mess!After coffee I went back to the stem to clean up the repairs on the top and underside of the stem. I flattened out the repairs with a flat file to begin to blend them into the surface. I followed that up with 220 grit sandpaper to further blend it in. 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 used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. While I liked the look of the new stem on the shank it felt like it was missing something to me. I really wanted to give it a special touch that would set it apart and make the look spectacular. I went through my band collection and found a perfect 14K Gold band that would do just what I wanted. I took down the end of the shank to enable a snug fit. I heated the band with a lighter and pressed it onto the shank end. I finally finished this nightmarish restoration of a pipe that should have been quite simple. The Greenwich House Antique Import Briar Crowned Pot with a vulcanite saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that everything came together. The briar around the bowl is clean and really came alive. The rim top looks much better than when I began. The rich brown stains gave the grain a sense of depth with the polishing and waxing. The grain  on the smooth portions really popped and the worm trails carving look good as well. 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. I buffed the 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 Greenwich House Antique Pot is a beauty and feels great in the hand and looks very good. 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 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of pipe is 2.29 ounces/65 grams. It is much more beautiful in person than these photos can capture. I will be putting it on the rebornpipes store soon. Look for it in the American Pipe Makers section. If you would like to add it to your collection let me know. This is another pipe that has the possibility of transporting the pipe man or woman back to a slower paced time in history where you can enjoy a respite. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me.

Replacing a Broken Tenon on a L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro 2 Egg Bent Egg


 

Blog by Steve Laug

Last week I received a call from a local Vancouver realtor who had gotten my phone number from the pipe shop here. He had a pipe that he said needed a stem replacement and wanted to know if I could do that for him. I have learned to ask what he meant about needing a stem replacement. I had him send me photos of the pipe so I could see what it needed. It was a L’anatra bent egg shape with a silver ferrule. In the first photo you can see the tenon snapped off in the shank. I talked with the fellow a bit and we decided to do a tenon replacement. He was keen to keep the Duck head on the stem so this seemed the best solution for him. I told him to drop the pipe off at the house so I could work on it. I have included the photos that he sent me so you could see what I was going to deal with. With the oval shank L’Anatra tenon replaced I turned my attention to the original one that he had called me about. It too had the tenon snapped off in the shank. It was stamped on the left side of the shank and read L’Anatra [over] dalle Uova d’ Oro [over] 2 Eggs for the Grade of smooth pipe that it was. Underneath that it was stamped Hand Made in Italy. It had some beautiful grain around the bowl and shank. It was a little dirty with some debris and darkening on the beveled inner edge of the bowl. It had been smoked significantly more than the previous pipe. It had a screen in the bowl to help with what I assume was wet smoking but I did not know for sure. I left it in the bowl. It looked like he had dropped it as well but there were no dents in the finish. The stem was in good condition with some chatter on both side ahead of the button but nothing to deep. Once the tenon was replaced it would be a quick clean up and polish before I gave it back to him. I took some photos of the bowl and stem when I received it to show what a great looking pipe it was. I took photos of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and the darkening on the back inner edge of the rim. I also took photos of the stem to show the tooth chatter on both sides at the button. I rotated the bowl and took photos of the stamping on the left and underside of the shank. It was clear and readable as noted above.I decided to start my work on the pipes by pulling the tenon on both pipes. That way I could proceed on them both from the same starting place. The broken tenon was firmly stuck in the shank so I put the bowl in the freezer while I had a coffee. When I finished the coffee I tried to pull the tenon again with the screw and it came out very easily. I went through my tenons and found a threaded one that would fit the shank with a few minor adjustments. I used a Dremel and sanding drum to remove the should ahead of the threads and to reduce the diameter slightly to fit the shank. I also used the Dremel and sanding drum to remove the fragments of the broken tenon on the stem face. I put the tenon in the shank and took some photos of the fit. It was looking very good. Now it was time to work on replacing the broken tenon. I drilled out the face of the stem with a cordless drill and a bit roughly the size of the airway in the stem. I find that this helps to center the drilling. I worked my way through drill bits up to 15/64s which is approximately the size of the threaded portion of the tenon.I flattened out the threads with the Dremel and sanding drum until the fit in the new opening on the stem was snug. I fit a pipe cleaner in the stem and then coated the threaded tenon end with black CA glue and turned it into the stem. I set it aside to let the glue harden. Once it had I removed the pipe cleaner and took some photos of the pipe with the stem. While the glue cured on the new tenon I turned my attention to the bowl. 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 worked over the darkening on the rim top at the same time. It looked much better. 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. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. It was in such great condition that I polished it 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 finished it with a final coat of Obsidian Oil. This L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro 2 Egg Grade Bent Egg turned out to be a more beautiful pipe than I had expected once I had replaced the tenon. The finish on the briar is beautiful and the grain is quite stunning around the bowl and shank. I put the pipe back together and buffed it lightly with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the acrylic stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine and hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like with the polished black vulcanite stem. This classic looking L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Bent Egg feels great in my hand. It is light and well balanced. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 54 grams/1.90 oz. It is a beautiful pipe and another one that will be heading back to the Vancouver Realtor now that I have replaced a broken tenon on each of the pipes. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.

Replacing a Broken Tenon on a L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Sandblast Squashed Tomato


Blog by Steve Laug

Last week I received a call from a local Vancouver realtor who had gotten my phone number from the pipe shop here. He had a pipe that he said needed a stem replacement and wanted to know if I could do that for him. I have learned to ask what he meant about needing a stem replacement. I had him send me photos of the pipe so I could see what it needed. It was a L’Anatra bent egg shape with a silver ferrule. In the first photo you can see the tenon snapped off in the shank. I talked with the fellow a bit and we decided to do a tenon replacement. He was keen to keep the Duck head on the stem so this seemed the best solution for him. I told him to drop the pipe off at the house so I could work on it. I have included the photos that he sent me so you could see what I was going to deal with. The day that he was going to drop the pipe off he called and asked if he could put another pipe in the bag that had the same problem – a snapped tenon in the shank. I told him to go ahead and add it to the bag. When I came home from work the pipes were waiting for me. The second pipe was another L’Anatra. This one was a beautifully sandblasted bent squashed tomato shape with an oval shank. Like the first one the tenon was snapped off in the shank. It was stamped on the underside of the shank and read L’Anatra [over] dalle Uova d’ Oro [over] Hand Made in Italy. The blast was very well done – deep and rugged. The sandblast on the rim top had some debris and darkening but otherwise was clean. The bowl itself was clean and still had raw briar in the bottom half of the bowl. It looked like he had dropped it not too long after he acquired it. The stem was in good condition with some chatter on both side ahead of the button but nothing to deep. I decided to deal with this one first. Once the tenon was replaced it would be a quick clean up and polish before I gave it back to him. I took some photos of the bowl and stem when I received it to show what a great looking pipe it was. I took photos of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and the darkening in the sandblast finish of the rim. I also took photos of the stem to show the tooth chatter on both sides at the button.I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It was clear and readable as noted above.I decided to start my work on the pipes by pulling the tenon on both pipes. That way I could proceed on them both from the same starting place. I used a dry wall screw and twisted it into the airway. On this pipe a bit of wiggling and the tenon popped free of the shank. The other was a bit tougher but I will talk about it on the next blog.I went through my tenons and found a threaded one that would fit the shank with a few minor adjustments. I used a Dremel and sanding drum to remove the should ahead of the threads and to reduce the diameter slightly to fit the shank. I also used the Dremel and sanding drum to remove the fragments of the broken tenon on the stem face.I put the tenon in the shank and took some photos of the fit. It was looking very good.Now it was time to work on replacing the broken tenon. I drilled out the face of the stem with a a cordless drill and a bit roughly the size of the airway in the stem. I find that this helps to center the drilling. I worked my way through drill bits up to 15/64th which is approximately the size of the threaded portion of the tenon.I flattened out the threads with the Dremel and sanding drum until the fit in the new opening on the stem was snug. I fit a pipe cleaner in the stem and then coated the threaded tenon end with black CA glue and turned it into the stem. I set it aside to let the glue harden. Once it had I removed the pipe cleaner and took some photos of the pipe with the stem. While the glue cured on the new tenon I turned my attention to the bowl. I used a brass bristle wire brush to scrub off some of the darkening on the rim top. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the briar with my fingertips and a horse hair shoe brush 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. It was in such great condition that I polished it 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. This L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Sandblast Squashed Tomato turned out to be a more beautiful pipe than I had expected once I had replaced the tenon. The sandblast finish on the briar is beautiful and the nooks and crannies of the blast really show the depth of the finish. I put the pipe back together and buffed it lightly with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the acrylic stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I hand buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine and hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like with the polished black vulcanite stem. This classic looking L’Anatra dalle Uova d’ Oro Squashed Tomato 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: 1 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 63 grams/2.22 oz. It is a beautiful pipe and one that will be heading back to the Vancouver Realtor once I finish the tenon replacement on his second L’Anatra – an Egg. Thanks for walking through the restoration with me as I worked over this pipe. Thanks to each of you who are reading this blog.

Reuniting a Yello-Bole stem with its original Pipe and Restoring the Pipe


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table is a Carburetor KBB Yello-Bole Zulu. Jeff picked it up on an online auction from New Braunfels, Texas, USA in April of 2016. It has been sitting here since then. You may wonder why once you see the photos below as it is a nice looking pipe. It is stamped on the left side of the shank with KBB in a cloverleaf followed by Carburetor [over]Yello-Bole [over] US. Pat. 2,082,106 [over] Cured with Real Honey. The stamping starts in the middle of the top of the shank and rolls down the side. On the right side it is stamped with the shape number 4501. On the underside it is stamped Reg. U.S. Pat. Off. [over] 343,331. I will have to look up both of the patents and see what I am working with. The finish on the pipe was peeling and flaking off in spots. There was a metal contraption that forms the carburetor on these pipe in the bottom of the bowl and on the heel. The bowl still had the yellow bowl coating. It appeared to have been smoked just a few time so the coating was pretty in tact. There was a light lava coat on the rim top, heavier at the back of the bowl. The inner bevel and outer edge looked very good. The stem was lightly oxidized and had tooth marks on both sides. There was a large chunk out of the underside of the stem at the button. Jeff took these photos of the pipe before he did his work.He took photos of the rim top and the stem surfaces to give a clear idea of what needed to be done with this pipe. The description above is clearly shown in the photos. He took photos of the heel of the bowl to give a clear idea of the carburetor system but also of the beautiful grain on this pipe. It really is a nice piece of briar. Jeff was able to capture the stamping on the shank very well. They are clear and readable. The only photo missing is that of the shape number on the right side of the shank. You can also see the Yellow O on the stem top.Now comes the moment of truth! Somehow (neither Jeff nor I have any memory of this) the tenon had snapped off in the shank and the stem and bowl were separated. Generally when this happens on Jeff’s end he bags the bowl and stem in a sandwich bag to keep them together. But in this case that was not done. It could have broken in transit between Idaho and Canada or I could easily have snapped it when I tried to remove the stem. I too would have bagged the parts together but somehow the two were separated. The bowl went into my box of bowls for restemming and the broken stem went into the can of stems. Seemingly never to meet again.

I took the bowl out of the box about a month ago to restem. It had a broken tenon in the shank. So I popped it in the freezer for a little while then pulled the tenon out with a screw. I was surprised to see that it had the stinger apparatus that was in these Yello-Bole pipes still in the broken tenon and it was undamaged. Jeff had done a thorough cleanup on this one so it was in great shape. I took some photos of the bowl before I started looking for a stem for the pipe. I went through my can of stems and found oval shaped stem with a snapped tenon. It was even a Yello-Bole stem so that was a bonus. Or so I thought. I still did not put it together that this was the original stem. I took the broken tenon and stinger and lined it up with the stem. It was a perfect match! Now I knew that it was the original stem and I would be able to unite the parts again. Remember at this point I had not seen Jeff’s before photos that are above showing what the pipe looked like when he bought it. All of this was a bit of a fluke! Once I saw those photos all doubt was removed but I still had no idea how they got separated. I decided to look up the patents on the US Patent site and see what I could find about about them and the date they were filed (https://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/PTO/srchnum.htm). I searched first for the US. Pat. 2,082,106 that was stamped on the top and left side of the shank. I assumed it referred to the Patent for the Carburetor but I was not certain. I found a drawing and description of the carburetor system of a patent filed by R. Hirsch on April 21, 1936 and granted on June 1, 1937. I have included those pages below. Now I had an idea of a starting date for the age of this old pipe. On the underside of the shank it was stamped with a different Patent No. It read as follows: Reg. U.S. Pat. Off. 343,331 and I had no idea what this patent referred to so I ran it through the same site’s search and found a Paten filed by A. Muller-Jacobs of New York for a coloured varnish finish. The pipe I was working on had a peeling varnish finish so that also fit well with the pipe. The patent itself was granted on June 8, 1886. I have included that document below for your purview.From there I wanted to see if I could set the date with more accuracy. I looked up a blog I had written on a Yello-Bole with a Double Carburetor to see what I had found when I had researched for that pipe (https://rebornpipes.com/2019/08/09/restoring-a-kbb-yello-bole-double-carburetor-bulldog/). I quote that blog in part below.

I Googled the brand and line to see what I could find out. Here is what I found.

The first link to me to the Kaywoodie Group and a thread on dating this particular pipe. There was a helpful exchange between lifeon2 and Bosun about a pipe that is stamped in a similar manner to the one that I have. Here is a link to the full conversation: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/kaywoodie/dating-yello-bole-pipes-t86.html

lifeon2 writes: OK so there isn’t a lot of dating information for Yello-Bole pipes but here is what I have learned so far.

  1. If it has the KBB stamped in the clover leaf it was made 1955 or earlier as they stopped the stamping after being acquired by S.M. Frank.
  2. From 1933-1936 they were stamped Honey Cured Briar.
  3. Post 1936 pipes were stamped “Cured with Real Honey”
  4. Pipes stems stamped with the propeller logo they were made in the 30s or 40s no propellers were used after the 40s.
  5. Yello Bole also used a 4 digit code stamped on the pipe in the 30s.
  6. If the pipe had the Yello Bole circle stamped on the shank it was made in the 30s this stopped after 1939.
  7. If the pipe was stamped BRUYERE rather than briar it was made in the 30s.

(Information gathered from Pipedia – https://pipedia.org/wiki/Yello-Bole)

Bosun replies: the one I have is stamped on the left side of shank:

  1. Double Carburetor
  2. yello-bole
  3. u.s.pat.off
  4. with KBB to the left of the above

underside of shank has Cured with Real Honey

right side of shank has 4907

on top of stem is the white circle

lifeon2 replies: According to the list  I have it looks like you have a late 30s model, sweet

I also turned to a blog by Andrew Selkirk on rebornpipes that also added a degree of certainty to the date of manufacture of this pipe (https://rebornpipes.com/2015/05/03/1934-35-yello-bole-carburetor/).

I can say with a fair degree of certainty that this pipe is from 1934 or 35. The carburetor patent was granted in 1935, this pipe is stamped “Pat Applied For.” Interestingly enough, it also has a patent number on the bottom of the shank. Additionally, the four digit number was used by Kaywoodie until 1936. The first two numbers indicate the finish and the second two numbers indicate the shape.

With that information in hand I knew what I was dealing with in terms of age of this pipe. I knew from the information from Pipedia that the KBB in a clover leaf stamp meant that the pipe was made before 1955. The Cured with Real Honey stamp placed the pipe as 1936 or after. The four digit shape code was used until 1936. The shape code on this one was 4982 thus it is another argument for 1936. The patent was given to KBB in 1935 so the stamped “Reg. US Pat. Off also places the pipe after 1935.

The information that I have gathered helps me to know with a high degree of certainty that this Carburetor pipe was made in 1936. The four digit shape number and the patent information that I have included helped identify that with certainty. I also learned that the first two numbers indicate the finish and the second two numbers indicate the shape.

Now it was time to work on the pipe. I removed the peeling varnish with some fingernail polish remover (acetone). It came of nicely and left behind a nice looking piece of briar. With that finished I set the bowl aside and turned to deal with the hardest part of this work. I needed to replace the broken tenon in the stem and I needed to repair the chip out of the underside at the button. Both would require time for the repair to cure. I decided to do the tenon replacement first. I unscrewed the stinger from the broken tenon and chose a new tenon for the replacement. I used a threaded tenon. I used a Dremel and sanding drum to remove the shoulder on the new tenon and reduce the diameter to match the broken tenon. I screwed the tenon in the new tenon and the fit was perfect. Now it was time to drill out the stem.I smoothed out the broken edge with a Dremel and sanding drum. I drilled out the airway using increasingly larger drill bits to open up the airway the depth of the threaded portion of the tenon.I reduced the diameter of the threaded portion of the tenon with the Dremel and sanding drum until the fit in the drilled out stem was snug. I coated the tenon with black super glue and put the parts together to check on the fit and look of the new tenon. I set it aside to cure while I took a break and enjoy a coffee.After coffee it was cured and I put the stem on the shank to have a look at the fit! The fit was really good and the parts looked like they belonged together. Now it was time to work on the next part of the stem repair. I took the stem off the bowl and unscrewed the tenon. I scrubbed the oxidation on the stem with Soft Scrub to get a clean surface to do the repair.I greased a folded pipe cleaner with Vaseline Petroleum Jelly so that it the repair would not stick to it. I inserted it in the slot and spread it out under the chipped area.I mixed a batch of Black super glue and activated charcoal powder to make a paste. I filled in the deep tooth mark on the top side of the stem and the button edge. I turned the stem over and layered in the fill on the chipped area. I sprayed the repairs with an accelerator to harden the super glue and give it a hard shell so that I could remove the pipe cleaner. I purposely overfill this kind of repair so that I have room to work on the shaping of the button and the stem surface. Once it was hardened to touch I pulled the folded pipe cleaner free and set the stem aside for the repair to cure. Tomorrow I will work on shaping the repaired area into a proper button.I set the stem aside to cure further and turned my attention to polishing the bowl – I dry sanded it with 1500-12000 grit micromesh sanding pads. I wiped the bowl down after each pad with a damp cloth to check the progress and remove the sanding debris. It was looking 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 to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for about 10-15 minutes and buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The grain came alive. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to reshaping the stem. I used files to do the initial shaping and remove the excess repair material. I sanded out the file marks and shaped the button with 220 grit sandpaper 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 nicely grained Yello-Bole 4501 Zulu turned out to be a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. (The yellow in the bowl is a bowl coating not a Meerschaum lining).The grain around the bowl and shank is quite beautiful and works well with both the shape and the polished and repaired vulcanite taper stem. With the tenon replaced and the stem rebuilt on the button end it looked very good. 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 Yello-Bole Zulu is another pipe that 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 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 25g/.88oz.  I will be putting it on the rebornpipes store shortly. You can find it in the American (US) Pipe Makers Section. 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!

Replacing a Broken Tenon on a Capri Warlock Sandblast


Blog by Steve Laug

Last week I received a call from a fellow who was referred to me by our local pipe shop. He had a churchwarden that was stamped Capri [over]Warlock [over] Made in Italy on the underside of the shank. He had broken off the tenon and was not sure how to proceed. We talked about replacing the tenon on the stem and he breathed a sigh of relief. We discussed how to get it to me to work on. He decided he would mail it to me. On Monday this week that package arrived with his pipe. It was a nice looking pipe in many ways. The shank was clear of the broken tenon and the bowl was quite clean. The shank and stem were filthy inside and it is quite clear that he had not cleaned it often. The stem had an acrylic adornment ring on the end that was glued in place. The tenon had broken off just ahead of this ring. It was sharply broken and the airway in the previous tenon had not been centered in the tenon. It was significantly thinner on one side than the other which I think probably was part of the reason for a break. The stem had some light tooth chatter on both sides near the button. I took some photos of the parts of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It was clear and read as noted above.I took a photo of the bowl and rim top to show the condition of the bowl when it arrived. I also took a photo of the broken tenon end on the stem.The pipe smelled really strong even though the bowl was clean and had no cake. It was filthy in the shank and the airway in the stem. I cleaned both out with 99% isopropyl alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. It took some work but it is finally clean and smells fresh.I used my Dremel and sanding drum to flatten out the end of the shank and remove the remainder of the broken tenon in preparation for the new tenon. I chose a new tenon from my assortment of them. It was a little large both in terms of the mortise and the shank end but it would work.I drilled out the airway in the stem with a bit on my cordless drill. Before I drilled it I used a sharp knife to center the airway in the stem and remove the off-center nature. I was able to center it then drilled. I started small and worked my way up to the maximum size the airway would take without weakening the walls of the stem. I used my Dremel and sanding drum to reduce the diameter of both ends of the tenon replacement. I checked it frequently for fit in both the stem and the shank. It took a bit of work but it finally was the right size.I checked the fit in the stem one final time then glued it in place in the airway with black CA glue. I set it aside over night to let the glue cure.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads to remove the tooth chatter and slight damage that had happened to the ring and the stem when the tenon broke. I dry sanded with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiped the stem down after each sanding pad with Obsidian Oil to protect and preserve the vulcanite.I put the pipe back together – the bowl with its repaired stem. This restemmed and restored Capri Warlock (Churchwarden) is a real beauty and I think that the fit of the new tenon works very well. The grain on the bowl came alive with the buffing. I used Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel on both the bowl and stem. I gave both multiple coats of carnauba wax on the wheel then buffed it with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed it with a microfibre cloth to deepen the shine. The Capri Warlock feels great in the hand. It is lightweight and the contrast in the blacks of the briar, the brown swirled acrylic ring and the polished vulcanite stem looks quite nice. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 10 inches, Height: 1 ¾ inches, Outer diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 2.50 ounces/71 grams. It really is a beauty. I will be packing it up this evening and mailing it out to the fellow soon. I think he will be excited to get it back.Thanks for walking through the replacement of the new tenon and the restoration with me. Cheers.  

Restoring and Repairing a Cracked Shank & Broken Tenon on a Portland oval shank 60 Egg


Blog by Steve Laug

I am still doing some repairs for a local pipe shop and this one came from a referral from them. I have fixed several pipes for this particular pipeman in Vancouver including banding, restoring and fitting a new stem. He stopped by last weekend and dropped off a pipe to be reamed and cleaned and also this relatively new pipe that he had dropped. It is an interesting looking pipe with mix of nice grain around the bowl sides. It was stamped on the underside of the shank and read Portland [over] Bruyere Garantie followed by the shape number 60 near the shank/stem junction. He had only smoked it a couple of times before he dropped it. The stem snapped off leaving the tenon in the shank. When I looked it over there were also cracks on the top of the shank that happened at the same time. The stem was dirtier than the bowl but overall it was in good condition. I took some photos of the pipe before I started working on it. I took photos of the rim top and the stem surfaces to chronicle the condition. The rim had some darkening from his lighter toward the right front of the bowl and on the back side. There was not any cake in the bowl as it was still quite new. The stem was just dirty with light tooth marks on both sides near the button. The tenon had snapped off very close to the stem so it would be a simple process to add a new tenon.I took a photo of the stamping on the shank underside. It is clear and readable.I took a photo of the parallel cracks on the top of the shank. These were hairline but they were present and though you cannot see it they go to the end of the shank.I began my work on this pipe by pulling the broken tenon. I always use a coarse threaded screw and gently turn it into the airway in the broken tenon. I carefully wiggle it free. If it is tight a short 10 minutes in the freezer takes care of that. I went through my box of tenons and found a threaded one that was close to the diameter of the older broken tenon. It would need to be shaped but it would work.Before working on the stem I decided to put the band on the shank and repair the crack and protect it from going further. They are very fine cracks and I decided not to drill it as the hole would be bigger than the cracks. A tight fitting band would pull it together. I reduced the depth of the band with a topping board to make it thin and give a daintier look than the big clunky band. It is a thin brass band and it is pressure fit in place on the shank. I heated the band with a lighter and pressed it onto the shank. I like the look of the banded shank in the photos below.With the band fitted it was time to work on the tenon and the stem. I used my Dremel and sanding drum to make the tenon smaller in diameter to match the shank. I worked on it until the fit in the shank was snug but not tight.With that finished it was time to drill out the stem. I used the Dremel and sanding drum to flatten out the broken tenon end on the face of the stem. I started drilling with a bit slightly larger than the airway and finished with a bit that would allow the threaded tenon to fit the stem.I do not tap the drilled hole in the stem. Rather I flatten out the threads slightly as they provided the grip for the glue when I insert the tenon in the stem. I coated the threaded tenon end with black superglue which dries more slowly than the regular glue and allows me to make adjustments in the fit. I checked the fit in the shank and was pleased with it. I set the stem aside so the glue could cure.I turned my attention to polishing the bowl. I polished it with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding it with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the briar down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. The pipe really began to take on a shine as I worked through the pads. I rubbed the briar down with some Before & After Restoration Balm. It works to protect, clean and enliven the briar. I rub it in with my finger tips and let it sit for 10 minutes. I buff it off with a cotton cloth to remove the excess and give the bowl a shine. I polished the stem and new tenon with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I dry sanded with the pads and wiped the stem down with Obsidian Oil after each sanding pad. I finished the polishing with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final rubdown with Obsidian Oil.I put the stem back on the bowl and polished the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel to give it a shine. I gave it multiple coats of carnauba wax and buffed it with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed it with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. I took some photos of the pipe before calling the pipeman to pick up his pipe. I am pleased with the look of the Portland Bruyere Garantie 60 Egg and the fit of the repair band and the stem to the shank. I think it will meet his expectations when he picks it up later today. Thanks for walking through the repair with me in this blog. Cheers.