Tag Archives: Stanwell Pipes

Restoring a Jess Chonowitsch Designed Stanwell Zebrano 163 Faceted Hexagonal Freehand


Blog by Steve Laug

I went through my pipes to choose what to work on next and this one caught my eye. It is a great looking Hexagonal Faceted Freehand. It is stamped on the left underside of the hexagonal shank and read Stanwell [over] Zebrano. On the right side underside it is stamped Made in Denmark and on the top right side it was stamped with the shape number 163. Zebrano pipes have a shank extension of Zebra wood on the end, sandwiched between two wafers of orange acrylic. Jeff was travelling in Europe for a holiday with his wife  bought this pipe on 09/16/2017 in Frankfurt, Germany at a bazaar. It has been sitting here in Vancouver cleaned and awaiting my part of the work for almost 5 years. When he found it the finish had thick grime and oils ground into the outside of the bowl and shank. The Zebrano insert had dried out and was rough to the touch. The rim top and inner edge of the bowl had burn damage and was slight out of round. There as a thick cake in the lower ¾ of the bowl and lighter cake on that ¼ of the bowl. The black acrylic stem was scratched and filthy and the inside of the filter tenon sans filter was filthy. It was made for a 9mm filter that I would need to replace. There were deep tooth marks and chatter on both side of the stem near the button. Jeff took photos of the pipe when he got home and got around to cleaning it. Jeff took photos of the rim top to show the condition of the bowl and edges. You can see the damage on the top and edges. You can see that the bowl is slightly out of round as well. He took photos of the stem surface to show the deep marks and damage on both sides. He took photos of the sides and the heel of the bowl to show the interesting grain patterns in the briar through the thick grime. He took a photo of the Zebra wood insert with the acrylic spacers as well. It was quite beautiful.  He took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It is readable but faint in places. Before I started working on the pipe I decided to do a bit of digging on the shape and the design. I turned first to a blog on rebornpipes by Bas Stevens the was a compilation of Stanwell shapes (https://rebornpipes.com/2013/09/03/stanwell-shapes-compiled-by-bas-stevens/). There I found the shape number 163. The information given there said that the shape was a Freehand, “Facet”, hexagonal, with brass ring by Jess Chonowitsch. It was a shape designed by Jess Chonowitsch and that was interesting to me.

I also looked on Pipedia and on Pipephil’s site and while I could read the history of the brand and gather background the Zebrano line was not mentioned. I did a Google search for the Zebrano 163 shape and found a gallery of photos and information on the pipe. I am including both the information on the brand and a few photos of the pipe. It was helpful information regarding what the pipe looked like originally (https://bn-dev.com/pipes-estate/galerie/galerie.php?pipe=3cb469b6b1b5237bdfe99cec04ff4c5feb267fc0). I quote below:

Marque / brand           Stanwell

Marquages / stamping            Stanwell zebrano made in denmark 163

Finition / finish           lisse / smooth

Longueur / length       14.8 cm / 5.83 in

Hauteur / height          4.49 cm / 1.77 in

diamètre tête / bowl diameter             4.22 cm / 1.66 in

diamètre fourneau / chamber diameter          1.93 cm / 0.76 in

Profondeur / depth      3.41 cm / 1.34 in

Poids / weight 43 gr / 1.52 oz

Forme / shape             freehand

Matière tuyau / Stem material            acrylique / acrylic (lucite)

Matière pipe / pipe material   bruyère / briar

Filtre / filter    9mm With that information and a visual idea of what the pipe looked like originally, I turned to work on the pipe itself. Jeff had thoroughly cleaned up the pipe. He reamed the pipe with a PipNet Pipe Reamer and cleaned up the remnants with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. He scrubbed the bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. There was some darkening on the inner edge of the rim and top that would need to be dealt with. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the filter tenon and the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the stem with Soft Scrub to remove as much of the oxidation as possible. The acrylic stem was clean but had tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. There was no stamped logo on the left side of the stem. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took photos of the rim top and bowl as well as the stem to give a sense of the condition of both. The rim top had some damage and darkening to the inner edge and rim top on the right front and back side. The stem cleaned up well and there were tooth marks on the top and underside ahead of the button.I took photos of the stamping on the underside of the hex shank. The are faint but readable as noted above. I took the stem out of the shank and took a photo of the overall look of the pipe.I decided to start my work on the pipe by addressing the darkening and damage on the inside edge of the bowl and the rim top. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to clean up the bevel on the inner edge and the top of the bowl. I wiped the top and edges down with a damp cloth and the rim top and edges looked much better.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 rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the bowl sides and shank with my fingertips. The product works 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. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I filled I the deep tooth mark on the underside of the stem with clear CA glue. Once it cured I sanded the repair smooth to blend it into the surface of the acrylic. I sanded out the rest of the tooth chatter and marks with the 220 grit sandpaper to smooth them out. I started the polishing of the stem with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. The stem was looking better with the repairs and polishing.   I set the bowl aside and turned to work on the stem. 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 have a box of Vauen 9mm System Filters that fit perfect in the tenon on the Stanwell Zebrano. I put one in place in the tenon and took some photos of the fit.This Jess Chonowitsch Designed Stanwell Faceted Hexagon Freehand 163 with a hexagon acrylic saddle stem fit for 9mm filters is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful grain on the briar and the Zebra wood shank extension that shines through the polished finish is stunning. 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 Stanwell Zebrano 163 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 ¾ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 40 grams/1.41 ounces. I will soon be adding it to the rebornpipe store in the Danish Pipe Making Companies Section. If you are interested in this pipe 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!

New Life for a Vintage Stanwell 86 Regd. No. 969-48 Handmade in Denmark Freehand


Blog by Steve Laug

I have sold a few pipes to a fellow in Israel over the past year and he is great to work with. He has great taste in pipes and the ones he has purchased from me have been beautiful. Not long ago I received and email from him about a pipe he was interested in purchasing EBay. He sent me the link and wanted my opinion on it. I believed that it was a design by Sixten Ivarsson made for Stanwell and one that I really like the flowing shape and broad bowl. I remembered that with the Reg. No. it was made between the late 1960s and early 1970s so it was a bit of an old one. The pipe appeared to be in decent condition. Not too many days after that he wrote me to say he had won it and wondered if he could have it shipped to me rather than to him in Israel. We chatted back and forth about it via email and the decision was made and the pipe was on its way to me. Here are the pictures that the seller included with the advertising.  The seller took a large photo of the rim top to show the condition. Though it is dark you can see the cake in the bowl and the burn damage to the inner edge and the top front of the bowl. I am hoping I can reduce that mark some but time will tell. He also included a photo of the top of the stem showing the oxidation and the tooth marks on that side of the stem. The photo of the underside of the bowl and shank is dark but you can seek the grain peeking through the grime on the finish. I think that it will have some nice grain once I clean it up.He also took photos of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It was faint but readable with a light. It read as noted above.He took the stem off the shank and took a picture of the mortise and the tenon to show the condition of those parts of the pipe. It was dirty but it looked solid.The pipe arrived this week and sadly I had forgotten that it was on its way from the seller. When I opened the box I remembered it. I examined it carefully to assess both the condition of the pipe and what I needed to do with it. There was a moderate cake in the bowl with lava on the rim top and what looked like a burn mark on the top front of the bowl. There was darkening around both the inner and the outer edges of the bowl. The pipe was stamped on the underside of the shank and read Stanwell [over] Regd. No. 969-48 [over] Handmade [over] in Denmark. To the left of the stamp it bore the shape number stamp – 86. The finish was dirty and dark so it was hard to see too well but you could see some interesting grain underneath. The stem had the Crown S stamp on the top of the saddle and was fade. The vulcanite was oxidized and there were tooth marks and chatter on the top and underside. It was going to take some work to clean up but I thought it would work out fairly well. My only concern was the burn mark on the front top of the rim. Even with that though it would look pretty amazing. I took some photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I have included them below. I took a photo of the bowl and rim top to show the thickness of the cake in the bowl and the damage to the top and edges of the bowl. You can see the darkening on the inner and outer edge of the rim – how much is lava and how much is burn damage remains to be seen. You can also see the burn mark on the top of the bowl at the front. It does not appear to have charred the surface as it is hard. I took photos of the stem surface to show the oxidation and tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. There are also scratches on the surface running from the tenon end to the button on both sides. The Crown S stamp on the top of the stem is visible but all the colour is gone.I took a photo of the stamping on the shank underside. It is faint but readable. I also took a photo of the Crown S on the top of the saddle stem.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe parts. It is really going to be quite a stunning piece.I reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and took the cake back to bare walls. I cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I sanded the bowl walls with 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around a piece of dowel. I examined the walls with a lens and they were solid and undamaged. I cleaned out the airway in the shank and the stem as well as the mortise with isopropyl alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. It was quite dirty and now smells much better.I scrubbed the exterior of the bowl with Murphy’s Oil Soap and a tooth brush to remove the grime from the finish of the bowl and rim top. I rinsed off the bowl with warm water and then dried the bowl with a cotton cloth. The grain that came to the surface once it was clean is quite stunning. I worked over the darkening and burn damage on the inside edge of the bowl and the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper. It began to look a lot better.I mixed up a batch of oxalic acid and warm water and used it to scrub off the rim darkening and the burn mark on the top. I dried it off with a paper towel. The burn on the edges of the rim were much better and the burn mark on the front top was definitely lighter.I sanded the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper and then sanded it with a medium and a fine grit sanding block. The grain on the rim top began to stand out. The rim edges look much better and the burn mark is much reduced.I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. After each pad I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth to remove the sanding debris. It really took on a shine by the last three sanding pads. I stained the polished rim top with an Oak stain pen. It matched the colour around the rest of the bowl and hid the burn mark a bit. Though it is still visible it is nowhere near as big as it was when I started.I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the briar where it works to clean, restore and preserve the briar. I let it do its magic for 15 minutes then buffed it off with a cotton cloth. The pipe looks incredibly good at this point in the process. With that the bowl had come a long way from when I started working on it. I set it aside and turned my attention to the stem. I put the stem for an overnight soak in Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer. In the morning I removed it from the bath and rubbed it down with a coarse paper towel to remove the oxidation that was on the surface. I cleaned out the airway in the stem with alcohol and pipe cleaners.I “painted” the surface of the stem with the flame of a Bic lighter to lift the tooth marks on both sides. I was able to lift them significantly but one remained on each side that would need to be filled with superglue.I scrubbed the remnants of oxidation with Soft Scrub All Purpose Cleanser. I removed a lot more of the remaining oxidation. It is finally starting to look better.I filled in the remaining tooth marks on both sides of the stem with black super glue. I set it aside to cure. Once the repair cured I flattened the repair with a small file to start the process of smoothing it out and blending it into the surrounding vulcanite. I sanded the file marks and repairs with 220 grit sandpaper and started polishing the stem with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. It is starting to look very good.I continued to polish the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding with 1500-12000 grit sanding pads. I wiped it down after each sanding pad with Obsidian Oil. The light oxidation that remained on the top of the saddle portion of the stem was hard to deal with due to the stamping on the top. I cleaned it as much as possible and repaired the white colour of the Crown S logo with White Acrylic fingernail polish. I applied it and when it hardened I scraped off the excess with my fingernail. Once finished I continued to polish the stem with the last three micromesh sanding pads. I polished it with Before & After Pipe Stem Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine and wiped it down with Obsidian Oil one more time. I am excited to finish this Ivarrson Designed Stanwell 86 Freehand. I put the pipe back together and buffed it with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax. I hand buffed the pipe with a clean buffing pad to raise the shine. It is fun to see what the polished bowl looks like with beautiful mixed grain all around it. The polished grain on the pipe looks great with the black vulcanite stem. This smooth Classic Ivarrson Designed Stanwell 86 is great looking and the pipe feels great in my hand. It is light and well balanced. Have a look at it with the photos below. The dimensions are Length: 5 ¼ inches, Height: 1 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¾ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 42 grams/1.48 ounces. It turned out to be a beautiful pipe. I will be packing it up and sending it to my friend in Israel. I think he will enjoy this beauty once it is in his hands. Thanks for your time reading this blog and as Paresh says each time – Stay Safe.

Found and reclaimed – A Vintage Stanwell Selected Grain 49 Zulu


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe is a vintage Stanwell that is quite exceptional. It is a well executed Zulu made between 1948-1960s. Some think the shape was designed by Sixten Ivarrson but I am not sure we will know for sure. Jeff and I picked up this pipe in a batch of pipes we purchased from a fellow in Los Angeles, California, USA. The pipe is stamped on the top side of the shank and reads Stanwell [over] Regd. No. 969-48 [over] Hand Made. On the underside of the shank it is stamped Selected Briar. The stamping is clear and readable. The briar was dark with tars and oils that almost obscured the amazing grain around the bowl  and shank. There was a thick hard cake in the bowl with an eruption of lava on the rim top that made it hard to know what the condition of the rim top and edges was underneath. The truth would be revealed once it was cleaned. The stem was oxidized, calcified and had tooth marks on the button surface and tooth chatter on both sides of the stem. It really was mess that had glimmers of promises peeking through the grime of time. Jeff took photos of the pipe to give you a sense of what it looked like before cleanup. He captured the cake in the bowl and the thick eruption of lava on the rim top and edges exceptionally well in the next photos. It was very clear that the pipe had not been seriously cleaned since the first smoke. But it is also very clear that it was an exceptional smoker! The stem shows the took marks on the button surface and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. Jeff somehow captured some of the beauty of the shape and the grain in the next photos. You can certainly see what lies beneath the grime on the briar. He captured the stamping on the top and underside of the shank. It is readable but the topside is definitely more worn than the underside. The Crown S stamp on the stem is deep and workable but has a lot of corrosion and grime in the stamping.I have worked on a lot of Stanwell pipes over the years and have found the Pipedia site very helpful in terms of giving background and an historical overview of the company from its founding to the present day. Here is the link to the article on the site on Stanwell pipes (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell).

I also scanned through the catalogues in the margins and in the links on the site and found a page that included the shape #49 Oval stem large sized Zulu pipe that I am working on. I have done a screen capture of the page below and encircled the shape in red. I then turned to a linked page on the article to the section on Shape Number and Designers that was primarily the work of a friend of mine named Bas Stevens. Bas initially had this article on the rebornpipes site so I am familiar with it. I include the link here if you want to check it out (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell_Shape_Numbers_and_Designers). I was hoping that Bas had a clue to who designed the shape 49 but alas he did not seem to. What was there though was that there were two versions of this shape. The first was what he calls a Dublin and others call a Zulu and the second was a freehand. I am working on shape “a” from the chart below. It is described there as a Dublin, slightly bent, oval stem and mouth piece.Armed with the information that I had gleaned from my research, I turned my attention to the pipe itself. I was amazed at how clean and new the pipe looked when I took it out of the box. It is really a beautiful piece. Jeff had done a great cleanup on the pipe. He reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and followed up with a Savinelli Fitsall pipe knife to remove the cake. He scrubbed out the mortise and the airway in the shank and the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the bowl exterior with a tooth brush and Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the grime on the finish of the bowl and the lava from the rim top. He rinsed it under running water. One of the benefits of this scrub is that it also tends to lift some of the scratches and nicks in the surface of the briar. He dried it off with a soft cloth. He cleaned the internals and externals of the stem with alcohol, pipe cleaners and cotton swabs. He soaked the stem in Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water and cleaned out the airway in the stem with alcohol. I took photos of the pipe as I saw it when I put it on the table. I took a photo of the rim top and stem to show the condition. The rim top looked pretty good and there was some darkening on the inner edge at the front of the bowl. The stem was vulcanite and there were tooth marks on the button and some light marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button.The stamping on the top and underside of the stem are clear and readable. The stamp on the top side is more worn but it is still readable. The stamped Crown S on the stem is very clear and should retain the new white acrylic very well.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole. I started my work on this pipe by dealing with the darkening on the inner edge of the bowl. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the inner edge and give it form once again. The cleaned up rim edge looked very good.     I polished the briar with 1200-1500 micromesh sanding pads and wiping it down with damp cloth after each sanding pad. As I worked through the cycle of pads the shine developed with each change of pad. The pipe looks very good.           I rubbed the bowl and shank down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the bowl sides and shank with my fingertips to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for 10 minutes, then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. The Balm did its magic and the grain stood out on the briar. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I sanded the stem with 220 grit sandpaper and started the polishing with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper.I polished it with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with Obsidian Oil after each sanding pad. I paused the polishing to touch up the Crown S stamp on the top of the oval stem. I have been using an acrylic white fingernail polish and find that it works well and is long lasting. I painted it on the stamp and worked it into the stamp with a tooth pick. Once it had hardened I scraped and sanded the excess off with a 1500 grit micromesh sanding pad. It came out looking very good.I picked up the polishing once again. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem. The photos below show the polished stem.This Vintage Stanwell Regd. No. 969-48 Selected Grain 49 Zulu with a vulcanite stem is a beautifully grained pipe with a flowing shape that is stunning . The rich browns of the stain made the grain come alive with the polishing and waxing. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl 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 Stanwell Selected Grain Zulu really is a beauty and fits nicely 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 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 1.31oz./37grams. This one will soon be on the Danish Pipe Makers section of the rebornpipes store if you would like to add it to your collection. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. There are many more to come!

This Rare Sixten Ivarrson Design Stanwell Shape 96 – a shape I have never understood


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table was purchased from a fellow in Los Angeles, California, USA. This one is obviously a Stanwell made pipe from just looking at it. The sandblast finish is quite beautiful even through the grime. The shape of the pipe is very odd in my opinion – almost oval but odd and designed to sit on the desk top. There is a Crown S stamped in the left side of the saddle stem. It was stamped on the underside of the shank on a smooth panel. The shape number 96 is stamped mid shank. Under that it reads Hand Made. Next to that it reads Stanwell [over] Regd. No. 969-48. With the Regd. No. I know it is an older pipe. The finish was dirty with dust and grime ground into the nooks and crannies of the sandblast finish. There was a thick cake in the bowl and lava overflow on the rim top. The inner edge of the rim was covered so thickly in lava it was hard to know what was underneath. The vulcanite fancy saddle stem was calcified, oxidized and had tooth marks and chatter ahead of the button on both sides. Jeff took some photos of the pipe before he started to work on cleaning it up for us. Jeff took photos of the rim top and the stem to show the condition of the pipe when we received it. You can see the thick cake in the bowl and the heavy coat of lava filling in the blast on the rim top and inner edge of the bowl. The stem is calcified and oxidized with light tooth chatter and marks on both sides near the button. He took photos of the sides of the bowl and the heel to give an idea of the shape and the condition of the briar around the bowl. It really is a strangely shaped pipe in my opinion but it has a great sandblast around the sides. The next photo Jeff took shows the stamping on the underside of the  shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. The Crown S logo is also visible on the left side of the saddle stem.Before I started working on it I did a bit of research on the brand to get a feel for where it fit in the Stanwell line. I turned to Pipephil’s site to see if I could some information on the shape or line (http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-r6.html). While there was a lot of information on the brand there was nothing on this particular shape. There was a note on one of the shapes regarding the “Regd. No.” stamping being discontinued in late 1960s to very early 1970s. That helped to pin down and end date for the manufacture of this pipe.

I then turned to Pipedia and quickly scanned the article on Stanwell getting a great overview of the history. I went through the photos and did not find the shape of the pipe that I was working on (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell).

I followed one of the links at the end of the site to an article on rebornpipes written by Bas Stevens on the shape numbers and the designers who originally carved those shapes for Stanwell (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell_Shape_Numbers_and_Designers).

The shape number 96 is listed as follows: 96. Freehand, oval bowl, long saddle mouthpiece by Sixten Ivarsson. It also appears to be a rare shape that has been compared to a potato sack.

Jeff had cleaned up the pipe following his normal cleaning process. In short, he reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife.  He scrubbed the smooth bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He worked over the lava and debris on the rim top and was able to remove it. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the stem with Soft Scrub and cotton pads to remove the debris and oils on the stem. He soaked it in a bath of Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. He rinsed it with warm water and dried it off. I took photos of the pipe once I received it. It really looked good. I took close up photos of the stem and the rim top to show both how clean they were and what needed to be addresses with both. The rim top and bowl edges look very good. The stem looked better and the tooth marks and chatter was very light.I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. You can see from the photo that it is clear and readable.I removed the stem from the bowl and took a photo of the parts to give a sense of the beauty of the pipe.The bowl was in such good condition that I started by rubbing the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm working it into the briar with my finger tips and into the blast and plateau with a shoe brush. The product works to clean, revive and protect the briar. I let it sit on the pipe for 10 minutes then buffed it off with a soft cloth. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. Continuing with Al’s (upshallfan) recommendation I applied some acrylic white nail polish to the stamping on the stem side. I was paying so much attention to getting it in the stamp that I forgot to take a photo until after I cleaned it up. The nail polish worked great. Thanks again for the reminder Al!I polished out the tooth chatter and marks on the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding it 1500-12000 pads. I wiped it down with some Obsidian Oil each pad to remove the dust and polishing debris. I polished it with Before After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. This is another pipe that I am really happy about the look of the finished restoration. This reborn Sixten Ivarrson Design Stanwell 96 Sandblast Freehand turned out really well. I think that it really is a great looking pipe with a great shape and grain. The freehand/plateau top bowl and the vulcanite saddle stem goes well together. The polished black of the stem works well with the briar. The briar really came alive with the buffing. The rich brown stains of the finish make the grain really pop with the polishing and waxing. I put the stem back on the bowl and 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. 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 Stanwell 96 Sandblast Freehand really feels great in the hand and it 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 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 34 grams/1.20 oz. The pipe will be going on the rebornpipes store soon. It will be in the section on Danish Pipe Makers if you would like to add it to your collection. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. It was a fun one to work on!

Restemming a Stanwell Design Choice 892 Ukelele with a proper stem


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table is one that was purchased in 2020 from an auction in Bloomingdale, New York, USA. It has been here for a while and I am just now getting to it. Work has been demanding so it is slowing down my restoration work a bit. This flat bowled volcano shaped pipe obviously has a a poorly fit replacement stem that has made it into an odd shaped churchwarden. I don’t think that it looked like this when it came out but I had no idea what it would have looked like before. It has a really mix of grains around the bowl and shank. It was stamped on the underside of the shank and it reads Stanwell [over] Design [over] Choice [over] Made in Denmark. To the left of this it is stamped with the shape numbers 892. The pipe was dirty with grime ground into the finish. There was a moderate cake in the bowl and lava overflow on the rim top. The inner edge of the rim was covered in lava it was hard to know what was underneath. The vulcanite shank extension was oxidized and worn. The churchwarden stem is overly bent and the fit in the shank extension is not quite right – just a few of several reasons that I knew it was a replacement stem. Jeff took some photos of the pipe before he started to work on cleaning it up for us. Jeff took photos of the rim top and the stem to show the condition of the pipe when we received it. You can see the cake in the bowl and the lava on the rim top and inner edge of the bowl. The oxidized and replacement churchwarden vulcanite stem was over bent and would need to be straightened or replaced with a more original stem. This one has chatter and deep tooth marks on both sides near the button. He took photos of the sides of the bowl and the heel to give an idea of the shape and the condition of the briar around the bowl. It really is a nicely shaped pipe with some great grain. There are some flaws in briar on the bottom of the bowl. The next photo Jeff took shows the stamping on the underside of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. I Googled the Stanwell shape 892 Design Choice pipe to see if I could find photos of what the pipe looked like when it was made and to see if I could see if there was information on who had made the pipe originally. I found a link to the shape on smokingpipes.com to the shape number (https://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/estate/denmark/moreinfo.cfm?product_id=238398). I have included the description from the site below as well as a photo of one of the pipes.

A shape designed for Stanwell by Sixten Ivarsson, this is a take on the Ukelele, with plenty of plump curvature and low-slung charm on display. This example is still in good condition overall, though it has picked up some light scratches around the bowl, and the chamber is slightly out of round.Now I knew that I was dealing with a shape designed by Sixten Ivarrson called a Ukelele that had a short fancy saddle stem and there was no reference anywhere I looked for a churchwarden stemmed Ukelele. I would need to fashion a new stem for the pipe to give the pipe a similar look to the one above.

Jeff had cleaned up the pipe following his normal cleaning process. In short, he reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife.  He scrubbed the smooth bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He worked over the lava and debris on the rim top and was able to remove it. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the stem with Soft Scrub and cotton pads to remove the debris and oils on the stem. He soaked it in a bath of Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. He rinsed it with warm water and dried it off. I took photos of the pipe once I received it. It really looked good but I was more convinced than ever that a new stem was needed. I decided that I would work on this stem while I was looking for a new stem.I took close up photos of the stem and the rim top to show both how clean they were and what needed to be addresses with both. The rim top and bowl look good. The edge was clean but there was some damage on the rim top at the front of the bowl. The Churchwarden stem looked better and the tooth marks and chatter were still present. I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. You can see from the photo that it is readable.I removed the stem from the bowl and took a photo of the parts to give a sense of the beauty of the pipe. I started my work on the pipe by addressing the flaws in the bottom of the bowl. Under a lens there were small sand pits along the line of the CA glue that I filled them with in the photo below. Once the repair cured I sanded it smooth with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to blend it into the surrounding briar. I polished the smooth briar and the vulcanite shank extension with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-4000 grit pads to smooth out the surface of the briar and the repair on the bottom of the bowl. I wiped the bowl down after each sanding pad with a damp cloth to remove the sanding dust. The briar began to take on a shine. I paused after polishing the bowl with the 4000 grit micromesh pad to stain the repair on the bottom of the bowl. I used a Maple stain pen to match the surrounding briar. Once the stain cured I finished polishing the bowl with 6000-12000 grit micromesh sanding pads. The bowl really did begin to shine. I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm working it into the briar with my finger tips. The product works to clean, revive and protect the briar. I let it sit on the pipe for 10 minutes then buffed it off with a soft cloth.   I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I decided to deal with the stem even though I would replace it on the finished pipe. I straightened the churchwarden stem with a heat gun to get the angle more in keeping with the angles of the shank. I sanded out the tooth marks on both sides of the stem at the button with 220 grit sandpaper and started the polishing with 400 grit sandpaper.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding it 1500-12000 pads. I wiped it down with some Obsidian Oil each pad to remove the dust and polishing debris. I polished it with Before After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. Now that the churchwarden stem was finished I turned my attention to a shorter stem that I shaped to match the one in the photo from smokingpipes.com. I used a stem blank that I shaped with a Dremel and sanding drum. I shaped the saddle above the tenon to flow into the blade of the stem. I also shaped the tenon area to also have the same slope. I wanted  the slope on both sides to match. I used 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the angles. I took photos of the newly shaped stem in place in the bowl. I like the looks of the pipe with the new stem. I heated the vulcanite with the flame of a lighter to soften the stem and give it a slight bend. The bend fit the angles of the shank and allowed it to sit on the desktop.I put the stem on the pipe and took photos of the pipe with its new stem. I looked very good and the angles were perfect. I liked the way the pipe looked at this point.I polished the new stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding it 1500-12000 pads. I wiped it down with some Obsidian Oil each pad to remove the dust and polishing debris. I polished it with Before After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. This is another pipe that I am really happy about the finished restoration. This reborn Stanwell Ivarrson Designed Ukelele turned out really well. I used a blank to shape and craft a new stem for it as the churchwarden stem just did not work well. After restemming I think that it really is a great looking pipe with a great shape and grain. The bowl is flattened volcano shape and the vulcanite shank extension goes well with it. The new vulcanite saddle stem is very close to the original stem that would have come with the pipe when it was new. The polished black of the stem works well with the briar. The briar really came alive with the buffing. The rich brown stains of the finish make the grain really pop with the polishing and waxing. I put the stem back on the bowl and 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. 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 Stanwell Design Choice Ukelele really has a unique beauty and feels great in the hand. It looks very good. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. The dimensions of the pipe are Length: 6 ¼ inches, Height: 1 ¼ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 55 grams/1.98 oz. The pipe will be going on the rebornpipes store soon. It will be in the section on Danish Pipe Makers if you would like to add it to your collection. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. It was a fun one to work on!

Restoring a Stunning Sandblast Stanwell Hand Made 50 Oval Dublin


Blog by Steve Laug

This particular sandblasted Stanwell pipe was purchased in 2020 from a fellow in Los Angeles, California, USA. It really is nice looking shape that I would call a bent Dublin. The shape of the bowl is a bit oval and that is picked up by the oval shank and stem. The finish is a deep sandblast that has been stained with an undercoat of cordovan and a top coat of black or dark brown. It is stamped on a smooth panel on underside of the shank and reads 50 followed by Hand Made [over] In Denmark. That is followed by Stanwell [over] Regd. No. 969-48. The pipe is very dirty and there is some wear on the sharp edges. There is a thick cake in the bowl and a thick lava overflow on the rim top and inner edge of the bowl filling in the sandblast. There was grime ground into the sandblast finish and dust and debris in the valleys of the blast. The vulcanite saddle stem had the Stanwell Crown S logo on the left side of the saddle. It had light tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button. The stem was oxidized and had some calcification on the end neat the button. The pipe must have been a great smoker judging from the condition it came it. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his work on it. Jeff took photos of the rim top and the stem to show the condition of the pipe when we received it. You can see the thick cake in the bowl and the lava on the rim top and inner edge of the bowl. The bowl is oval (almost shaped like and eye) while the chamber is round. The oxidized vulcanite stem and has chatter and tooth marks on both sides near the button. He took photos of the sides of the bowl and the heel to give an idea of the shape and the condition of the briar around the bowl. It really is a nicely shaped pipe with great sandblast finish. The next photo Jeff took shows the stamping on the underside of the shank. It is clear and readable as noted above. The stem logo is also clear. I turned to Pipephil (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html) to see what I could find. I found a side bar note on the stamping on the pipe. I found there that the company had begun in 1942 and that the “Regd. No.” stamping was discontinued in late 1960s to very early 1970s. So now I knew that the pipe was made after 1942 and before the late 1960s or early 1970s. I wanted to see if I could pin down the date a bit more.

I turned to Pipedia to learn more about the pipe (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell). I read through the article by Smoking Pipes.com there and would recommend it as being a good read. In the material there I found no additional information. I scrolled through the photos and the included catalogue pages and there I found something helpful. There was a late 1950s catalogue shown there that had the description of the pipe I have and also the shape 50 shown in the pages. I have included a screen capture of the page below. I have circled the shape in the photo below.With that information I had learned that this pipe was available in the late 1950s in the shape that I had in hand. The Regd No. stamping ended in the late 1960s or early 1970s. My guess would place this pipe in the period between 1958-1965. It is a real beauty.

Jeff had cleaned up the pipe following his normal cleaning process. In short, he reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife.  He scrubbed the sandblast bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He worked over the lava and debris on the rim top and was able to remove it. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the stem with Soft Scrub and cotton pads to remove the debris and oils on the stem. He soaked it in a bath of Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer to remove the oxidation. He rinsed it with warm water and dried it off. I took photos of the pipe once I received it. It really looked good. I took close up photos of the stem and the rim top to show both how clean they were and what needed to be addresses with both. The rim top and bowl look good. The stem looked better and the tooth marks and chatter though much lighter were still present. I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. You can see from the photo that it is readable.I removed the stem from the bowl and took a photo of the parts to give a sense of the beauty of the pipe.The bowl was in such good condition after the clean up that I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the surface of the briar with my finger tips and a horse hair shoe brush to get into the crevices of the sandblast. The product is incredible and the way it brings the grain to the fore is unique. It works to clean, protect and invigorate the wood. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I touched up the stamping on the left side of the saddle stem with PaperMate Liquid Paper. I painted it on and worked it into the stamp with a toothpick. Once it dried I polished off the excess. The stamp came out looking good. I was able to polish out the tooth chatter and marks on the stem with micromesh sanding pads – wet sanding it 1500-12000 pads. I wiped it down with some Obsidian Oil each pad to remove the dust and polishing debris. I polished it with Before  After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine. I gave it a final coat of Obsidian Oil and set it aside to dry. This is another pipe that I am really happy about the finished restoration. This Stanwell Oval Dublin turned out beautifully. It really is a great looking pipe with a great shape and rugged sandblast finish. The vulcanite saddle stem is really nice. The polished black of the stem works well with the briar. The briar really came alive with the buffing. The rich cordovan and black stains of the finish gave the pipe a sense of depth with the polishing and waxing. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel. I buffed the 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 Stanwell Dublin really 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: 6 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¾ inches long x 1 ½ inches wide, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 37 grams/1.31 oz. The pipe will be going on the rebornpipes store soon. It will be in the section on Danish Pipe Makers if you would like to add it to your collection. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. It was a fun one to work on!

Look at the Birdseye Grain on this Stanwell Royal Prince 02 Bent Egg


Blog by Steve Laug

I am enjoying an evening free to work on a few pipes. The next pipe on the table came from an online auction on 02/18/21 in Upland, California, USA. Even though the finish was a dirty and worn it had some amazing grain showing through the grit and grime of the years. On the left side of the shank it was stamped Stanwell [over] Royal Prince. On the right side it is stamped with the shape number 02. On the underside it is stamped Made in Denmark. The pipe is a bent egg and as the shape number identifies. The finish is filthy with grime and oil ground into the briar of the bowl and shank sides. The bowl had a thick cake and there was an overflow of lava on the inner edge of the rim. The stem was a bent vulcanite taper stem that fit snugly in the shank. It had the Stanwell Crown S faintly stamped on the left side of the stem. The vulcanite was oxidized, calcified and had tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. Jeff took some photos of the pipe to show its overall condition before he started his cleanup work. He took photos of the rim top and bowl to give a clear picture of the thickness of the cake and the lava and dust ground into the finish of the rim top and edges. There is dust and debris stuck to the walls of the bowl clearly visible in the photos. He also took photos of the top and underside of the stem to show the oxidation, chatter and tooth marks. Jeff took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to give a picture of what the briar around the pipe looked like. There is some stunning grain under the grime.He took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It read as noted above and is clear and readable. I turned first to Pipephil’s site to get a quick idea of when this pipe line was made and where it stood in the Stanwell hierarchy. I found nothing (http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html).

I also turned to Pipedia’s article on Stanwell but it did not add any further information. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell).

I turned to the section on Stanwell shapes and numbers on Pipedia to see if I could identify the designer (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell_Shape_Numbers_and_Designers). Finally I found a bit of help there. It stated that the shape number 02 came in two versions – a Freehand, oval bowl and stem designed by Sixteen Ivarsson and a Bent Egg Shaped Bowl sloping top and full mouthpiece. Now I knew that I was dealing with the second. There was also a catalogue photo that I have included below that shows the shape 02 at the top left of the photo.

With that information in hand I knew what I was dealing with in terms of the shape of the pipe. I am pretty sure it is a pipe that was made in the 80s or 90s. I was not certain but that is my educated guess. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

Jeff had reamed the bowl with a PipNet Pipe Reamer and cleaned up the remnants with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. He scrubbed the exterior of the bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He worked over the debris on the rim top and was able to remove it. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He soaked the stem in Briarville’s Pipe Stem Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. He scrubbed the stem with Soft Scrub and cotton pads to remove remaining oxidation on the ferrule and the stem. He rinsed it with warm water and dried it off. I took photos of the pipe once I received it. It really looked good. The rim top and the inner edge of the rim showed some nicks and marks after the cleaning. The stem had a few small tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button. I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It was clear and read as noted above.I removed the stem and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole. I decided to address the damage to the inner edge of the bowl first. I used a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the damage and clean up the edge. I was pleased with the reshaped rim top and edge. I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiping it down after each pad with a damp cloth. 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. The product works to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for 15 minutes and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine.I “painted” the stem surface on both sides with the flame of a lighter to lift the tooth marks. I was able to lift all of them on the underside of the stem but one of them on the topside remained. I filled it in with clear super glue. Once the repair cured I smoothed it out and also the tooth chatter on the underside with 220 grit sand paper. I started the polishing with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper.I touched up the stamping on the top of the stem. It was a Stanwell Crown S logo. Parts of it were faint but I was able to get some of the stamping to show up with the Paper Mate Liquid Paper White.I polished the vulcanite stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem. This beautiful Stanwell Royal Prince Sloped Bent Egg with a taper vulcanite stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl 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 Stanwell Royal Prince Bent Egg 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: 6 inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 46grams/1.62oz. I will be adding it to the rebornpipes store shortly in the Danish Pipe Makers Section. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. There are many more to come!

Breathing New Life into a Stanwell Black Diamond Polished Model 185 Bent Apple


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table came to me from either a trade I made (pipes for labour) or a find on one of my pipe hunts. I honestly don’t remember where it came from. It has been around for a while waiting to be worked on. It is a black stained pipe that allows the grain to peek through which is unusual for the black dress pipes that I have worked on. It has a Stanwell Silver Crown S and silver band make it one of the Black Diamond Polished line of pipes. The Black Diamond series from Stanwell isn’t completely black. The grain is vaguely visible through the stain. I have worked on this line before and written about it on the blog. Here is the link to that pipe (https://rebornpipes.com/tag/stanwell-black-diamond-pipes-with-a-semi-transparent-black-stain/).

The stamping on this bent Apple is clear and readable. It is stamped on the underside of the shank and reads Stanwell [over] Made in Denmark. To the right side of the shank it is stamped with the shape number 185. The pipe had a lot of grime ground into the smooth finish on the bowl and some darkening around the sides of the bowl. The bowl was heavily caked and had an overflow of lava on the back side of the rim top. It was hard to know what the rim top and inner edge of the bowl looked like under the grime. The acrylic filter stem dirty and had light tooth chatter and marks on the top and underside and the top surface of the button had a tooth mark. There an inset silver Crowned S on the left side of the taper stem. The pipe had promise but it was very dirty. I took photos of the pipe before I started my cleanup work.   I took photos of the rim top and bowl to give a clear picture of the thickness of the cake and the overflow of lava on the rim top. It is hard to know for sure if there is damage to the inner edge of the bowl because of the thickness of the lava coat. The thin silver band is tarnished and black. I also took photos of the top and underside of the stem to show the light chatter and tooth marks. I took photos of the stamping on the underside and right side of the shank. It reads as noted above and is clear and readable. There is a silver Crown S logo on the top of the saddle stem.I took the stem off the bowl and took a photo of the parts. It is a nicely shaped pipe. The tenon is a filter tenon. Now it was time to work on the pipe. I have to say it once again that I am really spoiled having Jeff clean up the pipes for me. Having to start with them in this condition adds time. I reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer using the second and third cutting heads. I followed up by scraping the remaining cake with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I finished cleaning up the cake in the bowl with a piece of dowel wrapped in 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the walls of the bowl.    I scrubbed the exterior of the bowl and rim top with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the debris from the finish. I rinsed the bowl with warm water to remove the grime and soap and dried it off with a soft towel. I used a small knife to carefully scrape off the lava on the rim top. I scrubbed the surface with cotton pads and saliva to remove the grime that remained.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 a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine.     I polished the Sterling Silver shank band with Hagerty’s Silver Polish to clean up the silver and remove the tarnish. I buffed it with a jeweler’s cloth to deepen the shine. Both of these things work to slow down the tarnish process. I took some photos of the band and bowl after the polishing. I cleaned out the mortise and airway in the shank with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol. It took quite a few of them to clean out the chamber. I find that filter pipes are often dirtier than none filter pipes. I scraped the walls of the tenon with a dental spatula to remove the hardened tars there. I clean it out with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and alcohol as well. Once finish the pipe smelled far better.    I gave the bowl a coat of Conservator’s Wax and set it aside and turned my attention to the stem. The stem was made for a 9MM filter. I have a box of Vauen Dr. Perl Junior Filters that is perfect for this stem. The filter has a blue end and a white end and I can never remember which way they fit in the tenon. I looked it up on the Vauen site and did a screen capture of the way it sits in the stem. The blue end goes into the stem.The stem was in very good condition and the chatter and tooth marks were light. I polished them out of the acrylic stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem.     This beautiful Stanwell Black Diamond 185 Bent Apple with an acrylic taper stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The rich blacks of the stains on the bowl allow the grain to poke through. It came alive with the polishing and waxing. I gave the bowl multiple coats of Conservator’s Wax as I did not want to buff off the stain. I gave 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 Stanwell Black Diamond is a beauty and fits nicely 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 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 67grams/2.36oz. I will be adding it to the rebornpipes store shortly and it will be in the Danish Pipe Makers section of the store. 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!

Look at the grain on this Stanwell Regd No. 969-48 Freehand


Blog by Steve Laug

I woke up to the sound of something large jumping on the roof next to our bedroom window around 4:30am this morning. That gave me an early start at the work bench. I have to tell you that on days like today I miss my old supervisor Spencer who would greet me no matter what time and beg for a treat… strange to not have him here. Ah well time to work. The next pipe on the table came to us in a group of pipes that we picked up from an Antique Store in Montana, USA in mid-2019 so it has been sitting here for a while. Even though the finish was a dirty and worn it had some amazing grain showing through the grit and grime of the years. On the underside of the shank it was stamped Stanwell [over] Regd. No. 969-48 [over] Made in Denmark. The pipe is a freehand and there is no shape number stamped on it at all. The finish is filthy with grime and oil ground into the briar of the bowl and shank sides. The bowl had a thick cake and there was an overflow of lava on the rim top filling in the plateau and inner bevel of the rim. The stem was a fancy turned vulcanite stem that fit snugly in the ferrule. It had the Stanwell Crown S faintly stamped on the topside of the saddle stem. The vulcanite was oxidized, calcified and had tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button. Jeff took some photos of the pipe to show its overall condition before he started his cleanup work. He took photos of the rim top and bowl to give a clear picture of the thickness of the cake and the lava and dust ground into the plateau finish of the rim top. There is dust and debris stuck to the walls of the bowl clearly visible in the photos. He also took photos of the top and underside of the stem to show the chatter and tooth marks. Otherwise the stem is quite clean. Jeff took photos of the sides and heel of the bowl to give a picture of what the briar around the pipe looked like. There are a lot of angles on this pipe and there is some stunning grain under the grime.    He took a photo of the stamping on the shank. It reads as noted above and is clear and readable. I turned first to Pipephil’s site to get a quick idea of when this pipe was made by reference to the Regd. No. on the underside of the shank (http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html). I quote what I found there.

The “Regd. No.” stamping discontinued in late 1960s to very early 1970s.

I also turned to Pipedia’s article on Stanwell but it did not add any further information. It is a great read in terms of the history of the brand (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell).

With that information in hand I knew what I was dealing with in terms of the stamping and the age of this pipe. I knew from the information from Pipephil that the Regd. No. stamping was discontinued in the late 60s to very early in the 70s. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

Jeff had cleaned up the pipe with his usual penchant for thoroughness. He reamed the pipe with a PipNet Pipe Reamer and cleaned up the remnants with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife.  He scrubbed the bowl with undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap with a tooth brush. He worked over the debris on the rim top and was able to remove it. He rinsed it under running warm water to remove the soap and grime. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He soaked the stem in Before & After Pipe Stem Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. He scrubbed the stem with Soft Scrub and cotton pads to remove remaining oxidation on the ferrule and the stem. He rinsed it with warm water and dried it off. I took photos of the pipe once I received it. It really looked good.  The rim top and the inner edge of the rim looked very good after the cleaning. It had a few small tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button.  I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It was clear and read as noted above. I removed the stem and took a photo of the pipe to give a sense of the whole. The stem is fancy turned vulcanite. I polished the bowl and the smooth portions on the rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiping it down after each pad with a damp cloth.  The bowl had lightened around the top edge and on the shank end. I touched up the stain on the bowl with a Maple stain pen.    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. I used a horsehair shoe brush to work it into the plateau on the rim top and shank end.. The product works to clean, enliven and protect the briar. I let the balm sit for 15 minutes and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine. I “painted” the stem surface on both sides with the flame of a lighter to lift the tooth marks. I was able to lift all of them on the underside of the stem but two of them on the topside remained. I filled them in with clear super glue. Once the repairs cured I reshaped the button with a rasp and a file. I smoothed out the repairs further with 220 grit sandpaper. I started the polishing with 400 grit wet dry sandpaper. I touched up the faint stamping on the top of the stem. It was a Stanwell Crown S logo. Parts of it were faint but I was able to get some of the stamping to show up with the Rub’n Buff Antique Gold.    I polished the vulcanite stem with micromesh sanding pads – 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped it down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem.  This beautiful Stanwell Regd. No. 969-48 Freehand with a fancy, turned vulcanite stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl 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 Stanwell Danish Freehand 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: 6 inches, Height: 2 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¾ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 54grams/1.90oz. I will be adding it to the rebornpipes store shortly in the Danish Pipe Makers Section. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it. There are many more to come!

 

 

Breathing New Life into a Stanwell Golden S Dublin 64


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the work table came to me from either a trade I made (pipes for labour) or a find on one of my pipe hunts. I honestly don’t remember where it came from. It has been around for a while waiting to be worked on. It is a beautifully grained Stanwell Golden S Dublin that really looks quite nice. The stamping is clear and readable. It is stamped on the underside of the shank and reads Stanwell [over] Regd. No. 969-48 [over] Golden S [over] Made in Denmark. To the right of that stamping is the shape number 64. The pipe had a lot of grime ground into the smooth finish on the bowl and some darkening around the sides of the bowl. The bowl was heavily caked and had an overflow of thick lava on the plateau rim top. It was hard to know what the rim top and inner edge of the bowl looked like under the grime. The stem was calcified, oxidized and had light tooth chatter and marks on the top and underside and the top surface of the button had a tooth mark. There an inset golden Crowned S on the top of the saddle stem. The pipe had promise but it was very dirty. I took photos of the pipe before he started his cleanup work. I took photos of the rim top and bowl to give a clear picture of the thickness of the cake and the overflow of lava on the rim top. It is hard to know for sure if there is damage to the inner edge of the bowl because of the thickness of the lava coat. I also took photos of the top and underside of the stem to show the oxidation, calcification, light chatter and tooth marks.     I took a photo of the stamping on the underside of the shank. It reads as noted above and is clear and readable. There is a gold Crown S logo on the top of the saddle stem.I looked on Pipephil’s site for information on the Stanwell Regd. No. 969-48 Golden S line and found the following information (http://www.pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html). I found one piece of information on the Regd. No. that was helpful to me. I quote:

The “Regd. No.” stamping discontinued in late 1960s to very early 1970s

I also went to Pipedia and read the article on the Stanwell brand. It is a great read and worth the time to read it (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell). There was a note toward the end of the article on the Golden S series. I quote that note below:

Golden S: This series was last produced in the mid to late 1970s. Its distinguishing mark was an 18 carat gold Stanwell logo, crown and “S”, on the mouthpiece.

Now it was time to work on the pipe. I have to say it once again that I am really spoiled having Jeff clean up the pipes for me. Having to start with them in this condition adds time. I reamed the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer using the first two cutting heads. I followed up by scraping the remaining cake with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I finished cleaning up the cake in the bowl with a piece of dowel wrapped in 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the walls of the bowl.  I used a dental pick to pick out the lava in the plateau finish on the rim top. I used a brass bristle wire brush to remove the debris from the finish. The rim top cleaned up really well with the lava coat removed. I scrubbed the exterior of the bowl and rim top with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap to remove the debris from the finish. I rinsed the bowl with warm water to remove the grime and soap and dried it off with a soft towel. While I was scrubbing the bowl I felt a rough spot on the front of the bowl. I examined it and found cracks on the front. There was a short one at the top from the rim down about ½ inch and below that were two further cracks extending down the height of the bowl. None of them go through to the inside of the bowl and are quite shallow. In the second photo below I showed the line of the crack with red ink. I used a microdrill bit on the Dremel to drill pin holes at the ends of each crack. You will see 7 pin holes in the photo below. I filled in the drill holes and the cracks with briar dust and clear super glue. Once the repair cured I sanded it smooth with 220 grit sandpaper and followed that with 1500-2400 grit micromesh sanding pads.  I stained the bowl with a dark brown aniline stain and flamed it with a Bic lighter to set it in the grain. I repeated the process until the coverage of the briar was even and the repaired areas were hidden.  I stained the plateau rim top with a black stain pen to highlight the grooves in the finish. I wiped the bowl down with alcohol on a paper towel to remove the excess stain and bring the grain to the surface. I polished the bowl and the rim top, sides and shank with micromesh sanding pads –sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads and wiping it down after each pad with a damp cloth. 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 a little while and then buffed with a cotton cloth to raise the shine.   While I was working on the bowl the stem was soaking in Briarville Pipe Repair’s – Pipe Stem Oxidation Remover. The stem sat in the mixture for 2 ½ -3 hours. I removed the stem from the bath, scrubbed lightly with a tooth brush and dried if off with a paper towel. I was surprised that it was quite clean. Just some light tooth marks on the button and underside of the stem near the button.   I filled in the small tooth marks on the surface of the stem on both sides with clear super glue. Once the repairs cured I sanded the stem with 220 grit sandpaper and 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 a damp cloth after each sanding pad. I used Before & After Pipe Polish – both Fine and Extra Fine to further polish the stem. At this point it dawned on me that I had not cleaned the inside of the shank or stem… boy I am rusty at this and have to tick off the steps! I cleaned the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners until the pipe smelled and looked clean.  This beautiful Stanwell Golden S shape 64 Dublin with a vulcanite saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The rich browns and blacks of the contrasting stains on the bowl and the plateau rim top came alive with the polishing and waxing. The repairs to the cosmetic cracks on the front of the bowl blended in very well. I put the stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel using a light touch on the briar. I gave the bowl 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 Stanwell Golden S Dublin is a beauty and fits nicely 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 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. 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!