Tag Archives: Replacing putty fills with super glue and briar dust

French Made Bruyere Garantie Bent Billiard from Burgas


Blog by Dal Stanton

I received Gary’s email when he and his wife were visiting the Bulgarian city of Burgas on the Black Sea coast. Ever since I started restoring pipes, Gary, my colleague living and working in Plovdiv, has kept his eyes open during his travels. He’s found some very nice pipes for me. The two he found at the antique shop on the main walking street in Burgas were possibilities so he landed them for me. The larger bent billiard in the pictures he sent is on my work table now. I chose it because I’m hoping for a project that doesn’t appear to be in too much need!The only marking on the pipe is stamped on the left shank and it says, “BRUYERE” over “GARANTIE” which I’ve understood as a rather generic marking used by several manufacturers from different continental countries in Europe.  On a hunch, I looked up the generic marking in Wilczak and Colwell’s manual, “Who Made That Pipe?” and was surprised to find a semi specific listing: UNK France.  With an ‘unknown’ maker, but because of the spelling, they identify the French origins.  Odds are, if from France, then most likely the place of origin is Saint-Claude.  After receiving the pipes from Gary, I put the French made, 3/4 Bent Billiard on my work table in Sofia, and take these pictures to fill in the gaps. The grain on this larger stummel is outstanding – much motion and flow.  Standing out is the bull’s eye wraparound knot grain perfectly situated to highlight the elbow where shank and stummel meet and blend (pictured above).  The stummel surface has several dents and some cuts from normal wear and grime collection.  The rim has some oil residues but like the stummel surface, has its share of normal wear dents.  The cake in the chamber is very light and the remnants of the last smoke are still evident – a blend of sorts (pictured below)!  The stem shows light oxidation and tooth chatter primarily on the lower bit.  The button and slot look good.  To start the restoration and cleanup of the Bruyere Garantie Bent Billiard, after inserting a pipe cleaner through the stem, I put the stem in the Oxi-Clean solution to soak, working on the oxidation.  With stummel in hand, I clean out the old tobacco from the chamber with the pipe nail tool.With the Pipnet kit, I ream the cake to the briar for a fresh start.  I use the two smaller of the 4 blades available in the kit and follow this by using the Savinelli pipe knife to fine tune the ream by strategically scraping the chamber wall.  To clean the chamber wall, I wrap 240 grit paper around a Sharpie Pen and sand the chamber and then use a cotton pad wetted with isopropyl 95% to remove the carbon dust.  Looking at the cleaned chamber, it looks good. With the chamber finished, I turn to cleaning the internals of the stummel with cotton swabs and pipe cleaners dipped in isopropyl 95%.  It does not take long and pipe cleaners and swabs are coming out clean. Now turning to the cleanup of the surface of the stummel, I use undiluted Murphy’s Soap with cotton pads and a bristled toothbrush to clean the grime off the briar surface.  Murphy’s does a good job cleaning wood of grime and old finish.  I rinse the stummel with tap water careful not to flood the internals with water.  I inspect the rim and surface with things cleaned up and take some close-ups of dents and marks showing signs of wear – a well-smoked and liked pipe.  The pictures show the cleaning and surface inspection. To address the stummel rim and surface, I use a medium grade sanding sponge to remove as many of the imperfections as possible.  I use this sanding sponge to perform a gentle topping of the rim to remove the dents.  I follow with a light grade sanding sponge and I also freshen the internal rim bevel using first 240 grit paper followed by 600.  The clear majority of the nicks and dents have been removed.  Those that remain will be an ongoing testimony of the years this pipe has spent serving his steward! The pictures show the progress. I’m ready now to fine-tune the stummel by sanding with micromesh pads 1500 to 1200.  I first wet sand using pads 1500 to 2400.  After completing the wet sanding, I detect some fills that have softened.  This probably resulted from the water on the stummel and the fill material was only water based.  Two were on the rim and a few more on the side of the stummel.  Using a sharp dental probe, I dig out the old fill that at this point has the texture of wet clay.  Pictured is the completion of the first 3 micromesh pads and the beginning of a small detour – such as life!  The detour requires that I mix briar dust and super glue to make a more durable fill than what I just removed.  After filling the holes, I’ll then need strategically to re-sand the patches and return to the micromesh pads.  While I’m at it, I detect a few more fills and clean them out.  These ‘factory fills’ are normal and reveal that one seldom finds a perfect block of briar without some imperfections.  The most challenging patch will be the rim.  I begin by wetting a cotton pad with isopropyl 95% and wipe down the stummel – I want it clean and free of residue fill material.  I then use a pipe nail and scoop out an enough briar dust on an index card that serves as my mixing pallet.  I then add a small puddle of regular superglue next to the briar dust and use a toothpick to begin mixing the putty by drawing dust into the puddle of glue.  When the consistency of the putty is about like molasses, I use a flat dental spatula to apply the briar dust putty to the holes.  I leave excess putty over each patch in anticipation of sanding it down flush to the briar surface.  I use an accelerator spray to shorten the curing time for the patches.  It takes me two batches to fill the holes.  The pictures show the progress. I decide to let the stummel rest a bit as the patches cure and work on the stem.  I remove the stem from the Oxi-Clean bath that it’s been soaking in for several hours.  The oxidation has ‘surfaced’ on the vulcanite stem and I use 600 grit paper and wet sand the stem to remove the oxidation after remounting the stem and stummel with the plastic disc separator.  This helps avoid shouldering the stem.  After completing the sweep with 600 grit, I look at the lower bit where there was tooth chatter and some dents.  I use 240 grit paper to sand these out.  One dent was refusing so I dropped a bit of Black CA glue on it and applied some accelerator spray to cure it quickly.  After a bit, I returned to the patch with 240 grit paper to smooth it and blend it with the vulcanite.  I follow using 600 grit sanding paper and then finish this phase by buffing the entire stem with 0000 steel wool.  The pictures show the progress. With the stem in front of me, I decide to move it to the micromesh phase.  Using micromesh pads 1500 to 2400 I wet sand the stem. When I complete this first cycle I realize that I forgot the clean the internals of the stem!  Call me anxious….  Holding the stem with paper towel, I gingerly use pipe cleaners dipped in alcohol 95% and then with cotton swabs I clean out the filter cavity.  Thankfully, the stem was in pretty good shape.  Back to the micromesh process.  I follow this by dry sanding with pads 3200 to 4000 and then 6000 to 12000.  I follow each cycle of 3 pads with an application of Obsidian Oil which deepens the color and revitalizes the vulcanite.  The pictures show the progress – looking good! With the stem restoration complete, I turn to the stummel again.  I use a flat needle file to begin the process of bringing the excess briar dust putty down to the briar surface.  I start with the rim patches and move around the stummel.  After using the flat needle file, I use 240 grit paper on each patch to bring it down to the surface.  I finish the sanding and blending with 600 grit paper.  At this point, I notice some air pockets in some of the patches.  I spot drop a small bit of superglue in each and spray it with accelerator.  After a few minutes, I sand down the superglue fills very quickly with the flat needle file, then 240, then 600.  I take pictures along the way. With my day ending, I want to clean the stummel internals further using a kosher salt and alcohol soak.  I fill the stummel with kosher salt and I cover the bowl and give it a shake to displace the salt.  I use kosher salt and not iodized salt as it does not leave an iodine aftertaste.  I stretch/twist a cotton ball and feed it into the mortise acting as a wick to draw out the oils during the soak.  I situate the stummel in an egg carton and using a large squeeze dropper, I fill the bowl with isopropyl 95% until filled.  I wait a few minutes as the alcohol is quickly drawn down.  I top it off again with alcohol.  I turn out the lights – another day complete. The next morning, the kosher salt and alcohol soak did its job.  The salt and cotton wick are discolored indicating a not too dirty stummel giving up more gunk.  I thumped the stummel on my palm (not table!) and the expended salt goes into the waste.  I wipe the chamber with a paper towel and run bristle brushes of differing sizes in the chamber, through the mortise and draft hole to remove all the salt.  It’s looking good and the new steward of this Bent Billiard will enjoy a sweeter taste as a result.  To get a bird’s eye view of the project, I rejoin the finished stem with the now patched stummel.  The more I study the grain on this pipe, the more I like it – especially the lower horizontal grain encompassing the stummel’s heel then transitioning through the elbow of the shank merger.  A very pleasing visual as one cradles the ample Billiard bowl in his (or her!) palm. Imagination aside, time to get back to the stummel micromesh process.  Since I  had already completed the first 3 micromesh pads, I wet sand with these again, but focus on the rim and stummel patched areas.  After wet sanding with pads 1500 to 2400, I apply a stain stick to the patch on the stummel.  Because of the sanding, this area is lighter than the surrounding patch of briar.  I apply some stain, let it dry, and wipe it with a bit of alcohol on a cotton pad to blend.  Then, I continue with dry sanding with pads 3200 to 4000 and then finishing with pads 6000 to 12000.  I am amazed at how a natural grain can achieve such a gloss through this process – wax is not needed!  To me, the difference between the character of this gloss and the ‘gloss’ of an acrylic finish is the difference between a high-end HD flat screen and a so, so TV – color, but not the same sharpness or reality.  When one looks at grain through an acrylic finish, you’re looking through a film creating the shine not the grain itself, as is with a natural grain gloss – the real deal.  The stains we apply then, do not create a film over the wood but colors it to help hide imperfections, etc., – a big difference.  The pictures show the source of my amazement and reflections. With the micromesh pad cycles completed, I confer with my wife about the finish.  Yes, I often ask my wife’s opinion at this point because of her eye for beauty and colors.  Originally, I had been thinking of keeping with the original color bent – toward more reddish tones.  After our conference, because of the beauty of this grain as is, I will stay with brown, leather tones consistent with the natural grain.  I had avoided the nomenclature during the sanding processes and there was still residue of the older color.  I use acetone (yes, the yellow label is acetone in Bulgarian!) with a cotton pad and work on removing the reddish finish.  I’m not totally successful, but I don’t think what is left will make a difference. To stay in the brown/leather tones, I decide to mix 3 parts Fiebing’s Dark Brown Leather Dye with 1 part alcohol with a large bulb dropper.  I want the finish on the darker brown side to blend the briar dust putty patches, but light enough so that the grain is showcased.  To prepare the stummel, I first wipe it down with a cotton pad wetted with isopropyl 95% to clean the surface.  After mounting a narrowed cork into the shank as a handle, I warm the stummel with a heat gun to expand and open the briar allowing it to absorb the dye more efficiently.  I then liberally apply the dye mixture to the stummel with a folded pipe cleaner seeking full coverage.  With a lit candle, I then ‘fire’ the stummel, igniting the alcohol in the dye which sets the stain.  After a few minutes, I repeat the process concluding with firing the stummel.  I then put the stummel aside to rest for several hours before continuing.  The pictures show the progress. After several hours, I’m ready to unwrap the crust encasing the stummel resulting from the fired dye.  I mount a felt buffing wheel on the Dremel, set the speed of the Dremel at the lowest, and use Tripoli compound’s abrasive characteristic to remove the crust.  I first purge the wheel with a tightening wrench, to remove old compound and to soften the felt wheel.  I rotate the felt buffing wheel over the surface without a lot of downward pressure.  The speed of the Dremel and the compound do the work.  To reach the difficult angle between the shank and bowl, I switch to a smaller felt wheel.  After finishing with the Tripoli compound, I wet a cotton cloth with alcohol and wipe down the stummel to both lighten the aniline stain and to blend it.  Following this, I switch to a cloth buffing wheel and turn the speed up from 1 to 2, approximately 40% of full speed, the fastest being 5, and apply Blue Diamond compound in the same manner as the Tripoli.  I notice a few bright spots on the surface as well as around the nomenclature where the stain did not set consistently.  I applied a bit of black Fine Point Sharpie Pen and darker stain sticks to blend the areas.  I go over these areas again with the Blue Diamond buffing wheel to blend the spot staining.  It looks good. I then buff the stummel with a flannel cloth to clean it of compound dust before applying the carnauba wax.  Switching to another cotton cloth buffing wheel dedicated to carnauba wax, I reattach the stem to the stummel and apply the wax at the same 40% speed.  I apply 2 cycles of carnauba to the surface and stem, then I switch to a clean Dremel buffing wheel and buff the pipe yet again.  Finally, I give the pipe a rigorous hand-buffing with a micromesh cloth.

This French, probably Saint-Claude, made Bruyere Garantie Bent Billiard is stunning – the grain is beautiful.  As I mentioned before, I am drawn to the heel of the stummel, at the elbow where stummel and stem meet – the knot grain perfectly situated there is amazing and says something about the eyes and judgment of the pipe maker who chose the briar block and could see what it would become.  I’m very pleased with the results of this pipe.  If you would like to adopt this classic Bent Billiard, look at my store front at The Pipe Steward.  The sale of pipes benefit the Daughters of Bulgaria, an organization we work with helping women (and their children) who have been sexually exploited and trafficked.  Thanks for joining me!  

 

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Brandy Bent Unmarked – another ‘Hole in the Wall’ Find


Blog by Dal Stanton

The Brandy before me now was a very nicely bundled pipe when I recently purchased the Stanwell Silver Mount which I’ve already restored (See HERE).  I landed these pipes at the treasure trove I call the ‘Hole in the Wall,’ an antique shop in the center-city of Sofia, Bulgaria.  My sites were on the Stanwell which was the prize, with its silver and class, but when I saw the Brandy, I plucked it out of the basket to bundle with the Stanwell – hopefully to land a more favorable purchase price for the pair.  The Stanwell and Brandy came home with me that day, and the picture I took below commemorated that day’s finds.  The next picture shows the results of the Stanwell Silver Mount’s restoration – a beautiful, dressy pipe.brandy1 brandy2The Brandy drew my attention as well because the bowl is a significant presence in the palm as I cradled the expansive bowl.  When I first saw it, I thought it might be a Volcano shape because of the hefty, expansive base of the stummel and the tightly restrained cone moving upwardly culminating in the rim. Yet, looking at Pipedia’s Pipe’s Chart by Bill Burney (see below), my later thoughts were confirmed that this indeed is a Brandy – actually, the first in my collection.  The stummel measures 1 3/4 inches in diameter at the broadest point of the ‘brandy glass’ bulge and the stummel tightens to the rim which measures 1 1/4 inches.  The height of the stummel is 1 7/8 inches.  This bowl is nicely shaped and proportioned – I like it!brandy3I take more pictures when I take the Brandy out of the ‘Help Me!’ basket and place him on my work table.brandy4 brandy5 brandy6 brandy7 brandy8With the stem in the Oxi-Clean, I continue with the clean-up of the stummel internals using cotton swabs and pipe cleaners dipped in isopropyl 95%.  After moderate resistance, pipe cleaners and cotton swabs started coming out cleaner.  Later, I will give the bowl a kosher salt/alcohol soak to further clean and freshen the internals and readying it for a new steward.brandy12With the internals cleaned with the frontal approach, I now look at the external surface.  I first scrub the rim and entire stummel with undiluted Murphy’s Oil to see if it makes much of a dent on the cloudy finish.  I have my doubts.  Well, after scrubbing the surface with Murphy’s Soap and I can see my reflection on the surface, I know that I’m dealing with an acrylic finish – the candy wrapper finish.  For manufacturers of pipes that put this kind of finish on a pipe, I can only think of two reasons to do so – it is a more cost-effective mass application of shininess – a chemically produced sheen that takes minimal time and man-hours, and to hide imperfections in the briar.  Switching to acetone to remove the finish, first, I use cotton pads, then the more persuasive help of 0000 steel wool.  The finish comes off with little effort and I begin to see why the finish is dark – there are several fills that the dark stain was masking.   I have no problems with darker hues to mask fills and imperfections, but I do not like the acrylic shine finish.  Pictures show the progress and the surface revealed.brandy13 brandy14 brandy15Before dealing with the fills, I sand the outer surface of the stummel and rim with a course grade sanding sponge to remove the superficial nicks and damage.  This works well.  I follow with a medium grade then a light grade sanding sponge to smooth and clean the surface of imperfections.brandy16I take a close look at the fills on the surface of the stummel and scrape them with a sharp dental probe to find out whether they are solid or if they are in danger of pitting.  Generally, they seem to be in good condition.  I do detect one pit and I drop-spot some super glue and apply an accelerator to cure the glue rapidly.  When the superglue is fully cured, I use a flat needle file to file it down near to the briar surface, then I use a rolled piece of 240 grit paper to sand it down to the surface, removing all the excess glue.  Then I use 600 grit paper just to smooth the surface of the patch.brandy17 brandy18Sanding with the sanding sponges removed most of the dents I detected earlier on the rim.  I want to freshen the inwardly sloped bevel to improve the lines of the rim.  I first cut an inner bevel with a rolled piece of coarser 120 grit paper.  Then I follow this by using 240 and 600 grit paper over the entire surface of the rim from the lower inner lip to the higher rim edge.  The result is a more tapered and sloped bevel and a crisper rim edge as the lower bevel blends into the upper slope.  The pictures show the progress.brandy19Next, I wet sand the stummel with micromesh pads 1500 to 2400 and when I complete this cycle, what I see I am not expecting.  Every fill on the stummel had softened and some had come out.  Apparently, the fill was not glue based, but simply a colored wood putty that would sit underneath the acrylic finish.  I haven’t seen anything like this up to this point.  Oh well….  I take the sharp dental probe and continue to dig out all the old filler putty and clean the holes left behind.  This restoration is taking an unexpected turn and it will take a bit of time to fill and sand down each of these 16 fill spots.  With briar dust and superglue, I mix a batch of putty and apply putty to each hole.  I leave excess over each fill area to be able later to sand each fill down flush to the briar surface.  I put the stummel aside for the patches to cure for about 12 hours.  The pictures show the digression.brandy20 brandy21With the putty patches curing, I take the stem out of the Oxi-Clean bath and take a picture of the oxidation raised on the stem.  I then wet sand the stem with 600 grit paper followed by 0000 steel wool to remove the raised oxidation from the stem.  The stem is looking good.brandy22Before I proceed with the micromesh pad sanding, I clean the internals of the stem using pipe cleaners and cotton swabs dipped in isopropyl 95%.  Using a sharp dental probe, I also dig out gunk from the slot.  The stem internals were dirty but pipe cleaners eventually prevailed.brandy23I then begin the micromesh cycle by first wet sanding with pads 1500 to 2400, followed by dry sanding with pads 3200 to 4000, then 6000 to 12000.  After each set of 3, I applied Obsidian Oil to the stem to revitalize the vulcanite.  The pictures show the progress, and a slight interruption when my daughter FaceTime’s me from Nashville between cycles – the pictures also show this wonderful interruption!   With the stem looking good, I put it aside and return to the stummel.brandy24 brandy25After the briar dust patches cure on the stummel surface, I begin the long process of filing and sanding the excess putty off the patches to bring the putty flush with the briar surface.  I first use a flat needle file to bring the excess almost to the surface and then I use 240 grit paper to smooth further, blending the patch with the surface.  With as many fills that I had, it provided ample practice to perfect my approach!  After smoothing all the briar dust putty patches, I find that some patches have small air-pockets revealed as I sand.  With these, I spot-drop some superglue, apply an accelerator to rapidly cure the glue, then re-sand those areas until the patches blend with the surface.  The pictures slow the slow progress.brandy27 brandy28 brandy29 brandy30With my day ending, I decide to clean the stummel internals further with a kosher salt and alcohol soak.  This cleans further as well as freshen the stummel for a new steward.  I stretch and twist a cotton ball to create a ‘wick’ to insert down the mortise.  This helps draw out the oils and grime.  Then I place the stummel in an egg carton for stability and fill the chamber with kosher salt.  The kosher salt is without iodine which can leave a taste.  I shake the stummel a bit with my palm over the chamber to displace the salt in the mortise a bit.  I then fill the fire chamber with isopropyl 95% until it rises a bit over the salt.  I then put the stummel aside for the night allowing the salt and alcohol to do the work.brandy31The next morning, the salt and cotton ‘wick’ had darkened signifying the job of drawing out tars and oils was achieved.  I dump out the expended salt by thumping the stummel on the palm and tossing the wick. I wipe the chamber with paper towel, and then use multi-sized round bristled brushes in the chamber and mortise to rid the stummel of residue salt.  I complete the cleaning job by plunging a few more cotton swabs and pipe cleaners into the mortise and draft hole and find that all the tars and oils have been removed.  I determine the Brandy’s cleaning, ‘Completed’!  The pictures show the progress.brandy32 brandy33 brandy34I turn again to the briar surface of the stummel.  With all the patch work done, I make a quick inspection of the surface looking for little shiny spots which would indicate that some residue excess of superglue was remaining on the briar surface.  I quickly address these with a rapid sanding with 240 grit paper.  From there, I return to a light grade sanding sponge and re-sand the entire surface aiming to help the blending with the plethora of patches and the briar surface.  brandy35I then proceed through the cycles of micromesh pads, 1500 to 12000.  The volatile nature of the grain in this block of briar becomes evident – it is evident that the block was taken from the upper or outer regions of the briar bush’s ‘burl’.  Its grain is more turbulent than you would find deeper inside the burl, where grains are a spectrum of non-existent to orderly currents of grain.  This excerpt from an article from Pipes & Tobaccos (1999) about briar grains from R. D. Field, I found very helpful in understanding briar grains:

Any burl, whether it be 30 years old or 130, does not possess what we call grain in its totality. When a burl is split in half a variety of patterns are able to be discerned in that: The center of the burl has no grain. The center, or heart, contains all the liquid held in the burl which is red in color and is known as blood. The wood surrounding this blood is also of a reddish tint and is devoid of capillaries as the water has got to where it was meant to be for storage.  Capillaries surround the center and, depending on the growing pattern of the burl and how it was split, can take the shape of straight grain, cross grain, flame grain, mixed grain, etc.

As we approach the upper part of the burl from where the branches emerge a pattern known as “branch wood” can be seen. Because the branches of the shrub actually start their growth within the burl the wood in these portions takes on some of the characteristics of the emerging branch. To look upon a swirling piece of briar devoid of other grain character (whether in a finished pipe or as part of the burl) is to look upon branch wood.

The many fills in this piece of briar I believe is due to it being an example of a block taken at a ‘branch wood’ formation seen in the pictures below.  The pictures show the progression through the micromesh pad cycles.brandy36 brandy37

The next step in the project is to stain the stummel.  I will aim for a darker hue but I want to contextualize this Brandy by bending the hue toward the reds using Fiebing’s Oxblood Leather Dye mixed with Fiebing’s Dark Brown Leather Dye including a hint of black, non-aniline dye.  I found a picture on the internet (below) that envisions the perfect ambiance for this Brandy after he’s restored and recommissioned! I’m aiming for the darker hue of the brandy that is displayed.  Dreamstime is doing a good job promoting the brandy glass, but truth be known, the Brandy shaped pipe I have would have been a better choice for display!  Acknowledging a totally unscientific approach to the mixture, if I find the results too red, I will probably follow by a straight application of Fiebing’s Dark Brown Leather Dye as an overcoat.brandy38After the dyes are mixed in a shot glass, I heat the stummel with an air gun to expand the grains to absorb the dye more efficiently.  Then, using a bent-over pipe cleaner, I apply the dye mixture liberally over the surface, utilizing a cork inserted into the mortise as a handle.  When applied, I fire the stummel with a lit candle, and the alcohol in the dye immediately burns off and sets the dye in the grain.  To make sure I’ve achieved total coverage, I repeat the process again, finishing by firing the dye, and putting the stummel aside to rest for several hours.  The pictures show the staining process.brandy39 brandy40A little anxious to unwrap the flamed dye crust, my impatience wins out and I mount the felt wheel on the Dremel high speed rotary tool.  I set the speed to the slowest available and using Tripoli compound I begin removing the crust to reveal the briar underneath.  Then, using a cotton cloth wheel, I apply Blue Diamond compound to the stummel, also using the slowest speed available.  After the Blue Diamond, I’m seeing two things – the hue is a bit redder than I wanted and I am seeing light spots that need darkening.  I use a mahogany dye stick and darken the light areas to blend.  Then, I take out the Fiebing’s Dark Brown Leather Dye, and set up for another application of dye to the stummel. With a folded pipe cleaner I apply Fiebing’s Dark Brown Leather Dye two times, as before, flaming after each application, then setting the stummel aside to rest.  Pictures tell the story.brandy41 brandy42After a few hours, I repeat the process of applying both Tripoli and Blue Diamond compounds to the stummel surface.  Following the compound application I hand buff the stummel with a flannel towel to remove the residue compound dust on the stummel.  I do this before applying the carnauba wax.  Changing to the cotton cloth wheel on the Dremel, I increase the speed to 2, the second slowest speed of 5 – being the fastest.  I reattach the stem and stummel and apply to both several coats of carnauba wax and then give the pipe a rigorous hand buff with a micromesh cloth to bring out the shine.brandy43This Brandy Bent Unmarked had a lot going against it after I discovered the multitude of fills necessary to restore and recommission this pipe.  Considering the odds against it, I think it looks very good.  The grain is very expressive.  I like the dark brown finish as the overcoat of the oxblood – it fits well the Brandy shape.  I sell my restorations with the profits helping the work we do with the Daughters of Bulgaria – those sexually exploited and trafficked.  This Brandy is ready to serve a new steward.  If you’re interested in adopting him and helping the Daughters, check out The Pipe Steward Store.  Thanks for joining me!brandy44 brandy45 brandy46 brandy47 brandy48 brandy49 brandy50