Tag Archives: Savinelli Estella pipes

Jaws and an Estella Non Pareil ¼ bent 9606 Stack by Savinelli

Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on my work table is a Savinelli made Estella that my brother sent my way. It is stamped on the underside of the shank on a smooth oval – Estella over Non Pareil over 9606 with the Savinelli S shield next to that and Italy underneath. When my brother sent me the photos it appeared to be a good looking pipe. The rustication and the stain colour were very nicely done. The Lucite shank extension and the matching Lucite stem in brown and gold tones looked really good – from the side view. The finish on the bowl looked to be dirty or at least had darkening where the hand of the previous owner had wrapped around the bowl.estella1 estella2The cake in the bowl had overflowed on to the rim top and left behind a black and pitted mess. The right front outer edge of the bowl also had a large scrape from a drop or a badly chosen knock to remove the dottle. The close up photos of the rim and the side of the bowl show the condition of the pipe. In the last photo in this series you can see the darkening where the hand wrapped around the side of the bowl.estella3 estella4The next photo shows the stamping on the bottom of the bowl and the shank extension. Other than the S shield logo connecting the Estella and Savinelli the stamping on the Lucite certified the connection.estella5The mortise in the shank extension showed damage and wear as well. It appeared that the mortise was lined with a Delrin tube to go with the Delrin tenon on the stem.estella6Now I am ready to show you the meaning of the word Jaws in the title of this blog. The two photos after the portrait below show the tooth marks left behind by the “shark” who owned this pipe. Lucite stems are really hard material so for him to leave behind this kind of deep gouges in the stem he must have had quite a pair of choppers. Maybe the teeth were like those on one of the villains on James Bond known as Jaws.estella7Whatever then previous pipeman’s choppers were like they left behind a legacy of damage on both sides of this hard Lucite stem that needed a lot of work and would never really disappear.estella8My brother did his usual thorough clean up on the pipe. He reamed the bowl and scrubbed the externals with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a soft tooth brush. He was able to remove all of the buildup on the rim top. He cleaned the internals of the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with pipe cleaners and alcohol. He wiped down the stem so that when the pipe came to me it was ready to restore. The next four photos show the pipe when I brought it to my work table.estella9 estella10I took a close up photo of the rim top to show the pitting and the damage on the right front outer edge of the bowl.estella11I took close up photos of the chomped on stem. It was truly a mess and one that would be a challenge to blend in the repairs on the variegated browns and tans of the Lucite.estella12The stem had a partial stamp of an S on the topside near the saddle. Now the challenge began. I examined the tooth marks and saw clearly that they were sharp cuts in the material and not just dents. Heating the stem and trying to raise them would not work. I looked through my super glue options and I had clear and amber superglue that might work. My guess was that no matter what I used would stand out to some degree because of the striations in the browns of the Lucite. I cleaned out the divots with a cotton swab and alcohol to make sure there was no debris in them and put a drop of amber super glue in the divots on both sides of the stem.estella13Once the glue dried I sanded it with 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the repairs to the surface of the stem. So far the topside was looking better than the underside.estella14I decided to see if I could remove more of the darkening around the spot where the hand of the previous owner clasped the bowl. I used some undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap and scrubbed it with a tooth brush. I rinsed the pipe under running water avoiding getting water in the bowl. I was able to remove the remainder of the darkening.estella15 estella16To remove the nicks and gouges from the rim top and to remedy the rough outer edge on the front right I topped the bowl on a topping board until the damage was gone and the rough edge was minimized.estella17I cleaned off the exterior of the stem with a damp cotton pad and cleaned out the stem with a pipe cleaner. You can see the ghosts of the repairs in the variations of the colour in the stem material.estella18I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding it with 1500-2400 grit pads and dry sanding it with 3200-12000 grit pads. After each set of three pads I wiped the stem down with the damp cotton pad to check the progress. The repairs certainly were smooth to the touch but nonetheless they were visible against the variations of the colour of the stem. I had been able to blend in the repairs on the upper portion of the stem but the closer I got to the button the more they seemed to stand out on both the top and the bottom sides.estella19 estella20 estella21I gave the bowl a coat of Conservator’s Wax and buffed it with a shoe brush. I buffed the stem with Blue Diamond on the wheel to see if I could further smooth and blend the repairs. I buffed the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad and then once again by hand with a microfibre cloth. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. The bowl and rim look really good and the finish is clean and as good as new. The stem and shank extension have a rich glow and from the side they look amazing. The top and underside of the stem with the repairs is absolutely smooth to touch and has a glow. The repairs do show but only because of the swirls of the Lucite. It was a pain to repair but I am happy with the overall finished product. Thanks for journeying with me on this chomped stem and knocked about pipe.estella22 estella23 estella24 estella25 estella26 estella27 estella28 estella29


New Life for a Savinelli Estella 604KS Oom Paul

Blog by Steve Laug

I have always liked the rough rustic finish on the Estella pipes by Savinelli. The texture of the sandblast and the ridges and whorls are a great tactile part of the pipe. This pipe is one that my brother picked up. The finish was dirty and there were some chips and wear around the rim of the bowl. The cake in the bowl and the dust and grime made this look dull but there was a beauty underneath. The stem had no tooth marks and a little chatter and calcification. There was a light oxidation on the stem. The seven photos below are ones my brother took before he cleaned up the pipe.estella1 estella2The next three photos are close up pictures of parts of the pipe. The first one shows the rim and the cake in the bowl. The cake is quite thick. The second photo shows the chips and damage to the outer edge of the rim. The third shows the stamping on the smooth bowl bottom. The final photos show the stem and its condition before the cleaning.estella3 estella4 estella5 estella6My brother Jeff reamed and cleaned the pipe before sending it to me. He scrubbed the bowl exterior with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush under running water. He cleaned the internals with pipe cleaners and cotton swabs. When the pipe arrived it was in great condition and clean. It was ready for me to restore. The oxidation on the stem came to the surface when he was cleaning it.estella7 estella8The bowl was clean and the rim was also cleaned off. All of the grooves and ridges were clean and there were no tars or oils on the rim. The stain was lightened on the rim and the end of the shank.estella9I took some photos of the stem to show the condition – no tooth marks and other than oxidation it was in great shape.estella10I wiped down the edge of the rim with alcohol on cotton swabs to remove any remaining dust and debris and touched up the stain on the rim, rim edge and shank end with a combination of black Sharpie pen and a dark brown stain pen.estella11 estella12The stem was an easy clean up. I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wetsanding it with 1500-2400 grit sanding pads and dry sanding it with 3200-12000 grit pads. I rubbed the stem down with Obsidian Oil between each set of three pads. After final rubdown I set the stem aside to dry.estella13 estella14 estella15I rubbed the bowl down with a light coat of olive oil and then gave it multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax. I buffed it with a clean buffing pad and by hand with a microfibre cloth. The photos below show the bowl after buffing.estella16I gave the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax and then buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. I hand buffed it again with the microfibre cloth. The photos below show the finished pipe. It is a beauty in its cleaned up condition. This one is available if anyone wants to add it to their rack. Just email me at slaug@uniserve.com or send a private message and it can be yours. Thanks for looking.estella17 estella18 estella19 estella20 estella21 estella22 estella23 estella24

Rough Finish – Reworking Damaged Rim on a Savinelli Estella 412KS Dublin

Blog by Steve Laug

Warren, a Facebook friend, gifted me this Estella Dublin made by Savinelli not too long ago. It came to me in decent shape. Someone had topped the bowl and removed the original rustication and the topping had given the bowl a decided cant to the front and to the left side. The finish was in good shape. There was a dark spot on the lower portion of the bowl on the right side that made me wonder what was going on. The stamping was sharp and read Estella 412KS. The inside of the bowl had been reamed but it showed that it was lightly smoked. The stem was dirty but in decent shape as well. There was minimal tooth chatter on both sides and a faint E stamp on the left near the half saddle. There were also some ripples in the Lucite stem from buffing.Estella1



Estella4 I scrubbed the bowl with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush to remove the grime and to see what was going on with the dark spot on the right. I could see from the inside of the bowl that there was no internal damage or burn through happening there. It appeared to be darkened only in colour rather than in burning.Estella5 I rinsed the bowl with warm water and dried it off. The photos below show the bowl after it had been scrubbed.Estella6



Estella9 The next three photos show the angle on the top of the bowl. From all my research on the brand and shape on the internet I had seen that the top was supposed to be flat and rusticated. I would need to flatten the rim and take care of the cant.Estella10


Estella12 When a bowl is this far out of square with a difference of almost ¼ inch in the slope it is a bit tricky to get a flat top. I used 220 grit sandpaper to begin the process and then used the Dremel and sanding drum to bring all sides even to my eye. Once I had the surface close to flattened I used a topping board and sandpaper to finish the job.Estella13


Estella15 I cleaned out the airway in the mortise and the stem with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol.Estella16 With the internals clean and the top flattened it was time to work on rusticating it. I wiped down the top with a cloth to have a clean surface to work with. The photo below is the final photo of the flattened smooth top.Estella17 Originally the Estella had a rim top that went with the rustication on the bowl. In all of my research I could not find one that was smooth topped. I wanted to approximate the original finish of the rim so I looked on the internet to find a close-up photo of what the rim on this particular shaped Dublin would have looked like when it left the factory. The photo below, while not of a new pipe, shows the rustication of the original rim.Estella18 I used a Dremel and an assortment of dental burrs to rusticate the rim surface. I started with a Dremel burr to begin with so I could roughen the surface before using the other burrs. Each burr gave a slightly different pattern to the rustication and gave it a more random appearance.Estella19




Estella23 The finished rustication is shown in the photo below.Estella24 I used a light brown stain pen to stain the rim to match the rest of the pipe.Estella25 I scrubbed the rusticated top with a brass tire brush to clean up the look and give it the same kind aged rustication that the bowl had. The brass brush knocked off the high spots and evened out the surface for a more random look.Estella26 I sanded the stem with 220 grit sandpaper to remove the rippled effect on both the top and the bottom of the stem and then used a fine grit sanding sponge to smooth out the scratches. I wet sanded the stem with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads and then dry sanded with 3200-12000 grit micromesh pads. Estella27


Estella29 I buffed the bowl and stem with Blue Diamond on the buffer and then gave them both several coats of Halcyon II wax and hand buffed it with a shoe brush to raise the shine. The finished pipe is shown in the photos below. I thoroughly enjoy the challenges present by the pipes I work on. This one was no exception. I think the finished look was worth the added effort to rusticate the rim. Once again thank you for taking the time to read and look at the blog.Estella30