Tag Archives: stem work

Restoring a Stanwell Bamboo Brown Sandblast Billiard with a saddle stem


Blog by Steve Laug

This rainy evening here in Vancouver I decided to work on was another one that was purchased on 11/14/2022 in a lot of pipes that came to us from Copenhagen, Denmark  It included a group of Stanwell Bamboo pipes that are quite beautiful, combining a briar bowl, a bamboo shank and an vulcanite or acrylic stem. The rugged sandblast on this pipe, around the bowl and shank has a mix of ridges and valleys highlighted by dark stain. The pipe is stamped on the left side of the bamboo and reads STANWELL. The pipe was a well used pipe when Jeff received it. There was dust and grime ground into the sandblast finish. The mixture of brown stains highlights some beautiful blast under the dirt. The bowl was heavily caked and there was an overflow of lava on the smooth rim top. The inner edge was hard to see clearly and the lava could easily be hiding damage. The stem is vulcanite and was dirty, oxidized and had light tooth marks, chatter and scratches on both sides ahead of the button and on the button itself. There is a brass/gold crown S logo inlaid on the left side of the saddle stem. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. He took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before his clean up. He also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the uniquely stained grain around the bowl and shank. The mixture of black and brown stains adds depth finish on the pipe. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. He also took photos of the bamboo showing the patina on the wood. The stamping on the left side the bamboo is shown in the photo below. It is clear and readable as noted above. The second photo shows the gold crown S on the stem side.  Before I started my work on the pipe I wanted to see if I could find any information that would help me get a sense of the line. I turned to Pipephil to get a quick review of the  Bamboo line (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html). The Brass Crowned S inlaid logo on the stem is shown in the photo below. I have included a screen capture of the brand info there.I then turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell) for more information. The article is great and gives a lot of history on the brand. There were also links to catalogues at the bottom of the page. I am including a page from a catalogue on the site below that gives a bit of a glimpse into the brand. Here is the link (http://www.axeljeske.de/Pfeifen/Stanwell_Amager.pdf). The catalogue page gives a great description of the Bamboo line. It reads as follows: Top quality bowls perfectly fitted with porous bamboo shanks for casual elegance.

Now it was time to work on the pipe.

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. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the stem with Soft Scrub to remove the grime and calcification. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. The pipe looked very good when it arrived here in Vancouver. I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the stem. You can see the damage on rim top and inner edge. The bowl is quite clean inside. The acrylic stem is in good condition with light tooth marks and some chatter as noted above.I took photo of the stamping on the left side of the shank. It is readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe. Once again it has a stainless steel tenon. The sandblast is quite beautiful and the dark and medium stains really make it stand out.I started my work on the pipe working on the damage to the inner edge and the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to bring the edge back into round and it looked much better.I polished the smooth rim top with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each  pad to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. It is a beauty. I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar and the bamboo with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I “painted” the tooth marks on the stem with the flame of a Bic lighter to lift them. I was able to lift the majority of them and sanded out the rest of the tooth marks and scratches with 220 grit sandpaper and then started the polishing with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the 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 Stanwell Bamboo Sandblast Billiard with a vulcanite saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The dark stain once cleaned up really highlights the grain and 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 Bamboo Sandblast Billiard 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 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 31 grams / 1.09 ounces. I will be adding the pipe to the Danish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store. If you are interested in purchasing 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.

Restoring a Stanwell Bamboo Dark Stained Billiard with a saddle stem


Blog by Steve Laug

This rainy evening here in Vancouver I decided to work on was another one that was purchased on 11/14/2022 in a lot of pipes that came to us from Copenhagen, Denmark  It included a group of Stanwell Bamboo pipes that are quite beautiful, combining a briar bowl, a bamboo shank and an vulcanite or acrylic stem. The grain on this pipe, around the bowl and shank has a mix of straight and flame grain almost obscured by the grime and the dark stain. The pipe is stamped on the left side of the bamboo and reads STANWELL. The pipe was a well used pipe when Jeff received it. There was dust and grime ground into the finish. The mixture of brown stains highlights some beautiful grain under the dirt. The bowl was heavily caked and there was an overflow of lava on the rim top. The inner edge was hard to see clearly and the lava could easily be hiding damage. The stem is acrylic and was dirty and had light tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button and on the button itself. There is a brass/gold crown S logo inlaid on the left side of the saddle stem. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. He took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before his clean up. He also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the uniquely stained grain around the bowl and shank. The mixture of black and brown stains adds depth finish on the pipe. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. He also took photos of the bamboo showing the patina on the wood. The stamping on the left side the bamboo is shown in the photo below. It is clear and readable as noted above. The second photo shows the gold crown S on the stem side.  Before I started my work on the pipe I wanted to see if I could find any information that would help me get a sense of the line. I turned to Pipephil to get a quick review of the  Bamboo line (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html). The Brass Crowned S inlaid logo on the stem is shown in the photo below. I have included a screen capture of the brand info there.I then turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell) for more information. The article is great and gives a lot of history on the brand. There were also links to catalogues at the bottom of the page. I am including a page from a catalogue on the site below that gives a bit of a glimpse into the brand. Here is the link (http://www.axeljeske.de/Pfeifen/Stanwell_Amager.pdf). The catalogue page gives a great description of the Bamboo line. It reads as follows: Top quality bowls perfectly fitted with porous bamboo shanks for casual elegance.

Now it was time to work on the pipe.

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. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the stem with Soft Scrub to remove the grime and calcification. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. The pipe looked very good when it arrived here in Vancouver. I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the stem. You can see the damage on rim top and inner edge. The bowl is quite clean inside. The acrylic stem is in good condition with light tooth marks and some chatter as noted above. I took photo of the stamping on the left side of the shank. It is readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe. Something different about this pipe was revealed when I removed the stem. The other two Bamboo Stanwells that I have worked on have a stainless steel tenon on the stem. The two remaining Bamboos also have a stainless steel tenon. But this one has an integrated tenon turned into the acrylic stem. I wonder why and when they changed that?I started my work on the pipe working on the damage to the inner edge and the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to bring the edge back into round and it 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 to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. It is a beauty. I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar and the bamboo with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I sanded out the tooth marks and scratches with 220 grit sandpaper and then started the polishing with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper.I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I was able to polish out the light tooth marks and chatter 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 Stanwell Bamboo Billiard with an acrylic saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The dark stain once cleaned up really highlights the grain and 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 Bamboo Dark Billiard 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 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 33 grams / 1.16 ounces. I will be adding the pipe to the Danish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store. If you are interested in purchasing 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.

Cleaning up a unique Peterson’s Dublin XL02 July 4, 2000 Commemorative Pipe


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on the table is one that was sent to my by a friend who had just purchased it. The shape reminded me of a large version of a Peterson’s 02 shape. He sent me the following photos of the pipe before he mailed it to me and I was interested. I am including those photos for you to see what I saw when he sent it to me. It is dirty for sure but it has some amazing grain around the bowl and shank and a Sterling Silver Band on the shank. The stem is a P stamped fishtail and looks great on the bowl. The pipe arrived on Monday and I opened the box to find this pipe. It is stamped on the left side of the shank and reads Peterson’s [over] Dublin. On the right side it is stamped Made in the Republic of Ireland in 3 lines [over] the shape number XL02. The silver band is stamped with a US Flag in the center of a circle with Peterson’s arced over the top of the circle and July 4, 2000 arced below the circle. Below that there are hallmarks – Hibernia (Ireland), Harp (quality of silver) and the date stamp of an italic O which is the date stamp for the year 2000. The fishtail saddle stem is vulcanite and has the Peterson’s P stamp on the left side of the saddle. The stem was lightly oxidized with some tooth marks and chatter on both the top and underside ahead of the button. It was tight in the shank and would definitely fit better once cleaned. The bowl had a light cake in it and smelled strongly of Latakia/English blends. The finish was in good condition but there was some dust and grime ground into it. I took some photos of the pipe when I unpacked it. I have included them below. I took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before my clean up. I also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides.  The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the grain around the bowl and shank. The mixture of brown stains adds depth to finish on the pipe. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. The stamping on the sides of the shank are shown in the photos below. They are clear and readable as noted above. The “P” stamp on the left side of the saddle is also in good condition.  I removed the stem and took a photo of the parts to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe and its overall look. It is a real beauty.The band on the shank of the pipe was loose and the glue had dried out. It slid off the shank with little effort. I cleaned up the shank end with alcohol on a cotton pad. I spread some all purpose white glue around the area with a dental spatula and pressed the band in place. I wiped off the excess glue with a damp cotton pad and took photos of the newly glued band. Once the glue hardened I polished the silver band with a jewelers cloth. It removed most of the oxidation but a little more work on it would leave it shining bright. I reamed out the light cake in the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer. I cleaned up the reaming with a Savinelli Pipe Knife and finished by sanding the bowl walls with a piece of dowel wrapped with 220 grit sandpaper. I cleaned out the shank and the airway into the bowl and the shank with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and 99% isopropyl alcohol.  To deghost the pipe of the heavy Latakia smells I stuffed bowl with cotton bolls and used a twisted cotton boll in the shank. I filled the bowl with alcohol using an ear syringe to place the alcohol directly in the bowl. I set it aside to let it do its work drawing out the tars and oils from the walls of the bowl and the shank. I let it sit overnight and then removed the dirty and oily cotton and debris that had accumulated. I ran a pipe cleaner through the shank and removed any remnants of debris. The  pipe smelled significantly better. I polished the bowl with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down with a damp cloth after each sanding pad. It really began to take on a shine. It is a beautiful piece of briar. I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I “painted” the stem with the flame of a Bic lighter to lift the tooth marks. The majority of them were lifted. I sanded out what remained with 220 grit sandpaper and then started the polishing with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the vulcanite 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 Peterson’s 4th of July 2000 XL02 Bent Apple with a vulcanite saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful finish really highlights the grain and the polished finish is stunning. I polished the silver band with a jewelers cloth to protect and shine the silver. 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 Peterson’s Dublin 4th of July 2000 XL02 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 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ¼ inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 69 grams / 2.43 ounces. I will be sending it back to the pipeman so that he can enjoy his “new” pipe. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Restoring a Stanwell Bamboo Tall Billiard with a taper stem


Blog by Steve Laug

This rainy evening here in Vancouver I decided to work on was another one that was purchased on 11/14/2022 in a lot of pipes that came to us from Copenhagen, Denmark  It included a group of Stanwell Bamboo pipe that are quite beautiful, combining a briar bowl, a bamboo shank and a an vulcanite stem. The grain around the bowl and shank has a mix of straight and flame grain. The pipe is stamped on the left side of the bamboo and reads STANWELL. The pipe was a well used pipe when Jeff received it. There was dust and grime ground into the finish. The mixture of brown stains highlights some beautiful grain under the dirt. The bowl was heavily caked and there was an overflow of lava on the rim top. The inner edge was hard to see clearly and the lava could easily be hiding damage. The stem is vulcanite and was lightly oxidized, dirty with light tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button and on the button itself. There is a brass/gold crown S logo inlaid on the left side of the taper stem. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. He took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before his clean up. He also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the uniquely stained grain around the bowl and shank. The mixture of black and brown stains adds depth finish on the pipe. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. The stamping on the left side the bamboo is shown in the photo below. It is clear and readable as noted above. The second photo shows the gold crown S on the stem side.  Before I started my work on the pipe I wanted to see if I could find any information that would help me get a sense of the line. I turned to Pipephil to get a quick review of the  Bamboo line (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html). The Brass Crowned S inlaid logo on the stem is shown in the photo below. I have included a screen capture of the brand info there.I then turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell) for more information. The article is great and gives a lot of history on the brand. There were also links to catalogues at the bottom of the page. I am including a page from a catalogue on the site below that gives a bit of a glimpse into the brand. Here is the link (http://www.axeljeske.de/Pfeifen/Stanwell_Amager.pdf). The catalogue page gives a great description of the Bamboo line. It reads as follows: Top quality bowls perfectly fitted with porous bamboo shanks for casual elegance.

Now it was time to work on the pipe.

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. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the stem with Soft Scrub to remove the grime and calcification. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. The pipe looked very good when it arrived here in Vancouver. I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the stem. You can see the darkening and scratches on rim top and edges. The bowl is quite clean inside. You can see the oxidation on the vulcanite shank end on the bamboo. The stem is in good condition with light tooth marks and some chatter as noted above.I took photo of the stamping on the left side of the shank. It is readable as noted above.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe.I started my work on the pipe working on the damage to the inner edge and the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to bring the edge back into round and it 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 to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. It is a beauty.   I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I “painted” the stem with the flame of a Bic lighter to lift the tooth marks. The majority of them were lifted. I sanded out what remained with 220 grit sandpaper and then started the polishing with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I was able to polish out the light tooth marks and chatter 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 Stanwell Bamboo Billiard with a vulcanite taper stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful finish really highlights the grain and 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 Bamboo Billiard 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: 1 ¾ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 inch, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 34 grams / 1.20 ounces. I will be adding the pipe to the Danish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store. If you are interested in purchasing 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.

Restoring a Stanwell Bamboo Apple


Blog by Steve Laug

This rainy evening here in Vancouver I decided to work on was another one that was purchased on 11/14/2022 in a lot of pipes that came to us from Copenhagen, Denmark  It included a group of Stanwell Bamboo pipe that are quite beautiful, combining a briar bowl, a bamboo shank and a an acrylic stem. The grain around the bowl and shank has a mix of straight and flame grain. The pipe is stamped on the left side of the bamboo and reads STANWELL. The pipe was a well used pipe when Jeff received it. There was dust and grime ground into the finish. The mixture of brown stains highlights some beautiful grain under the dirt. The bowl was heavily caked and there was an overflow of lava on the rim top. The inner edge was hard to see clearly and the lava could easily be hiding damage. The stem is acrylic and was dirty with light tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button and on the button itself. There is a brass/gold crown S logo inlaid on the left side of the saddle stem. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. He took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before his clean up. He also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the uniquely stained grain around the bowl and shank. The mixture of black and brown stains adds depth finish on the pipe. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. The two knuckle bamboo has a nice patina on it and will only get better with time. The stamping on the left side the bamboo is shown in the photo below. It is clear and readable as noted above. The second photo shows the gold crown S on the stem side.  Before I started my work on the pipe I wanted to see if I could find any information that would help me date this pipe and get a sense of the line. I turned to Pipephil to get a quick review of the brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-stanwell.html). The Brass Crowned S inlaid logo on the stem is shown in the photo below. I have included a screen capture of the brand info there.I then turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Stanwell) for more information. The article is great and gives a lot of history on the brand. There were also links to catalogues at the bottom of the page. I am including a page from a catalogue on the site below that gives a bit of a glimpse into the brand. Here is the link (http://www.axeljeske.de/Pfeifen/Stanwell_Amager.pdf). The catalogue page gives a great description of the Bamboo line. It reads as follows: Top quality bowls perfectly fitted with porous bamboo shanks for casual elegance.

Now it was time to work on the pipe.

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. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in the stem with alcohol, cotton swabs and pipe cleaners. He scrubbed the exterior of the stem with Soft Scrub to remove the grime and calcification. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. The pipe looked very good when it arrived here in Vancouver. I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the stem. You can see the darkening and scratches on rim top and edges. The bowl is quite clean inside. The stem is in good condition with light tooth marks and some chatter as noted above.I took photo of the stamping on the left side of the shank. It is readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe.I started my work on the pipe working on the damage to the inner edge and the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to bring the edge back into round and it 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 to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. It is a beauty.   I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I was able to polish out the light tooth marks and chatter 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 Stanwell Bamboo Apple with an acrylic saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful finish really highlights the grain and 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 Bamboo Apple 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 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 34 grams / 1.20 ounces. I will be adding the pipe to the Danish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store. If you are interested in purchasing 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.

Another Interesting Clean – a Yello-Bole Imperial 642 Carburetor Dublin


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on my table is the third and final pipe from threesome sent to for work from a fellow in Eastern Canada. This one is a smooth Dublin/Billiard. I found that it is stamped on the left side and read Imperial in script [over] Yello-Bole. On the right side it has the shape number 642 and on the heel it is stamped Carburetor next to the small aluminum tube in the heel. On the shank end where the stem and shank meet it is stamped Made in France. The bowl was hardly used and has a tube extending from the bottom of the bowl upward about 1/8 of an inch. Though there was some darkening in the bottom of the bowl the walls were still lined with the famous Yello-Bole honey coating and looked untouched. The bowl edges and rim top looked very good. The smooth finish was still shiny and new looking. The stem is probably vulcanite with a yellow circle on the left side of the taper and a huge chunk of vulcanite missing from the underside extending from the button forward about ½ inch. There were tooth marks and tooth chatter on both sides of the stem ahead of the button and on the surface. There was a Yello-Bole scoop stinger in the tenon that was also clean and undamaged. In looking at it I figured it would need a new stem. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before I started my clean up. I also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides and the large chunk of vulcanite missing on the underside. The stamping on the sides of the shank are shown in the photos below. They are clear and readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of them to show the perspective on the pipe. You can see the burn marks on the bowl and shank and the scratches and fills in the briar.I turned my attention to the clean up of the pipe itself. The obvious place to start on this pipe was to find a stem that would fit in the shank and if possible be a Yello-Bole logoed stem. I found one in my collection of stems that had the length and tenon dimensions. It was a little larger in diameter than the original but with adjustments it would look good. The replace was not new and had tooth marks and dents on the button end but otherwise looked good.I fit it in the shank and worked on the diameter of the stem with a flat file to remove the excess material on the aluminum band and the vulcanite. It took some work and careful filing but it worked fairly well. I took the following photos of the stem after I had filed it down. It looked quite good at this point in the process. I would need to fine tune the fit with sandpaper but I liked the direction it was going. I filled in the marks that remained with clear CA glue. When the repairs cured I used a small file to reshape the button edge and flatten out the repairs. I sanded the repairs 220 grit sandpaper to blend them into the surface. I started the polishing process with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the 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. I cleaned out the internals of the shank and stem with pipe cleaners, cotton swabs and isopropyl alcohol. Since the bowl exterior was so clean I polished it with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each  pad to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. The briar took on a newer, richer look.   I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips and into the rusticated portion with a shoe brush. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. This Yello-Bole Imperial 642 Dublin is a great looking pipe with its replacement stem and restoration. The smooth, rich red finish highlights the grain of the pipe. I put the new stem back on the bowl and carefully buffed the pipe with Blue Diamond on the buffing wheel. I gave the bowl and the stem multiple coats of carnauba wax on the buffing wheel and followed that by buffing the entire pipe with a clean buffing pad. I hand buffed the pipe with a microfiber cloth to deepen the shine. The finished Yello-Bole Dublin 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 ¾ inches, Height: 1 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 50 grams/1.76 ounces. I have one more pipe for this Eastern Canada Pipeman to work on. Once I have finished all three I will be sending them back to him to enjoy. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Restoring a Clay Viennese Coffeehouse Pipe with Bamboo Shank and Horn Stem


Blog by Steve Laug

Jeff cleaned this pipe up recently and I received it in the mail last week. It is a unique pipe that caught my eye and made me want to work on it next. This pipe was purchased from an online auction on 07/28/22 in Manorville, New York, USA. The left side of the shank is stamped in the clay and reads LAMA. The right side is stamped with a banner with the letter “L” or maybe a “T” in the center and what looks like a pipe crossing the letter. The bowl of the pipe is clay with a double bottom to the bowl. The shank is Bamboo with a cork fitment on the end of the bamboo to hold it in the shank. There was a cord around the shank and then also around the horn stem. The pipe is well used and heavily smoked. There was a thick cake in the bowl with some lava spots on the rim top and inner edge. The exterior of the hexagonal clay bowl was stamped with unique and twisted/vine like patterns on the sides and a checked pattern on the other front and back of the bowl. The stamping patterns on the bowl are filled in with a lot of dust and debris. It is very dirty looking all the way around. The cork fitting is quite dirty but still has life in it. It is not chipping or torn. The cord is dirty. The Bamboo shank is a two knuckle piece with great patina and crackling in the finish. The horn stem is glued in the bamboo shank and the fit is very good. The horn stem has tooth marks and chatter on both sides near the button. There are some “wrinkles” in the bend of the stem that will need to be addressed. Jeff took the following photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. He took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before his clean up. He also took some of the bamboo shank to show the patina and crackled finish. You can also see the cork that secured the bamboo shank in the bowl. The photo of the horn stem show the condition of both sides. The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the stamping in the clay around the bowl and shank. The mixture of a fancy carved finish and the black stain on the clay give the pipe a sense of elegance and old age charm. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. The stamping on the left side the shank is shown in the photo below. It is clear and readable as noted above.I did a bit of digging on Google and found that the pipe that Jeff and I purchased was a Viennese Coffeehouse Pipe. The logo on the paper in the background of the photo below is the same stamp that is on the right side of the shank – the letter L or T with a pipe crossing the letter. The stamp on the right side of the shank is LAMA same as the one above. From there I turned to Pipedia to see what I could learn further about the Viennese Coffeehouse   Pipe (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Wiener_Kaffeehauspfeife). I quote from that article below:

Wiener Kaffeehauspfeifen (Viennese coffee house pipes) are a special type of clay pipes where only the stummel is made of unglazed clay. The shank is often made of wood and the mouthpiece may be made from horn.

“As early as the late 18th century, some Viennese coffee houses had their own rooms for smokers. Business-minded coffee house owners offered their guests pipes stuffed with tobacco as a service. They only paid for the tobacco, the use of the pipe was free. Which brings us to the classic Viennese coffee house pipe of the 19th century. Its tall, slender head with six facets, made of white pipe clay, is easy to recognize. In the ornament-friendly 19th century, of course, the charming ornamentation could not be missing. The repertoire included geometric patterns, delicate tendrils, flowers, vases and figures. These pipes intended for the Austro-Hungarian market were made in workshops in the Westerwald, Germany, southeast of Cologne – well into the 20th century. The astonishingly long stems were mostly made of cherry or sour cherry wood. In order to have enough suitable wood available for their production, trees were planted near Vienna, in Theresienfeld in Lower Austria. One can only hope that the horn mouthpieces of the rental pipes were replaced and washed after use …”[1]

“Anyone who wanted could rent such a pipe for a small fee or for free if it was a known person for the duration of a pipe filling. The guest got a new mouthpiece, mostly they were made of goose quill and then he could indulge in his smoking pleasure. Once it was smoked, the pipe was taken apart, cleaned by the servant of the coffee house and another guest could enjoy it. We know a similar custom from other large cities, including England. There, clay pipes were borrowed in the so-called Tabagie[2] for a small fee and could then be smoked by those who did not own a pipe or who had forgotten it at home. The Kaffee Neuner on Seilergasse was particularly famous in Vienna. Famous contemporaries liked and often frequented there: Lenau and Grillparzer, for example, they quietly smoked their borrowed pipes there.”[3]

Footnotes:

  1. https://stadtarchaeologie.at/aus-der-wundertuete-wiener-kaffeehauspfeifen/
  2. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tabagie_(room)
  3. Peter Lehmann, http://169807.xobor.de/t4796f23-Rund-um-die-Pfeifen-von-und-mit-Peter-Lehmann.html#msg17103

I followed some leads on Google to a link on Worthpoint which is an auction site that sells pipes (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/viennese-coffeehouse-pipe-by-waren-zeichen-w-6). There was a listing there with the same paper above the photo as the one I shared above. It is also interesting to note that the pipe came with one stem/shank unit and an assortment of dark and light coloured clay bowls. I still don’t know how large the pipe is at this point. I include the photo and the quote below:

VIENNESE COFFEEHOUSE – PIPE in original box with six bowls in black and white all in like new never used condition(bowls have no chips and no ash residue, they are not used). I am not sure of the age of these, however box has no UPC label and states; Waren – Zeichen Trade Mark with the number 5514 B on box ends and Made in Germany – (below description has complete box information from top cover). Box is in excellent condition with only a mild scuff where there was an old price label, metal staples on box corners are all intact and perfect. Individual pipe bowls have the word LAMA on them. Pipes are made from clay, stem is bamboo. Double floored Clay Bowls soak up all moisture. Imagine – 5 extra Bowls – just change – no cleaning.

From Jeff’s photos I made the erroneous assumption that this was quite a large pipe. I was thinking it had a large style bowl like some of the older Meerschaum pipes I have worked on from Germany – somewhere in the neighbourhood of 12 inches long and 3 inches tall or more. You can imagine my surprise when it arrived. The pipe really is quite petite and light weight. The dimensions are as follows – Length: 7 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 7/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 40 grams / 1.41 ounces.

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. He cleaned out the inside of the bamboo shank and the airway in 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 and calcification as possible. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the stem. You can see how clean the bowl and rim top and edges are. The horn stem is in good condition with light tooth marks and some chatter as noted above.I took photos of the stamping on the sides of the shank. It is readable as noted above. I removed the stem and the shank from the clay bowl and took photos of the bowl an bamboo shank and horn stem to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe. I started my work on the pipe by working on the stem. I sanded out the tooth marks and the wrinkles on the bend on the underside of the stem sides with 220 grit sandpaper and started the polishing process with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper. I was able to polish horn stem and the shaved portion of the bamboo 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. I worked some Before & After Restoration Balm into the horn stem and also the Bamboo. I worked it in with my fingertips and a shoe brush. I let it sit and absorb into the surface of both. I buffed it off with a soft cloth. The Bamboo and the stem came alive. I worked some Vaseline Petroleum Jelly into the cork plug that fit on the end of the shank. It enables a snug fit of the shank in the clay bowl. The Vaseline softens the cork and gives it more flexibility and give.I laid the Bamboo shank and stem aside to let the Vaseline absorb into the cork.While it was sitting I turned m attention back to the bowl. I touched up the white spots on black bowl and shank with a black stain pen to blend it into the rest of the clay bowl. It looked much better. I rubbed the clay bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the surface of the clay with my finger tips. I worked it into the stampings on the clay bowl and shank sides with a shoe brush. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves a pipe. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. This Lama Viennese Coffeehouse Pipe with a Bamboo Shank and horn stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful finish really highlights the grain and 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 Lama Viennese Coffeehouse Pipe fits nicely in the hand and feels great. Give the finished pipe a look in the photos below. Once again the dimensions are as follows – Length: 7 ½ inches, Height: 2 inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 7/8 inches, Chamber diameter: ¾ of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 40 grams / 1.41 ounces. I plan on holding on to this unique piece of history so that I can enjoy a transport back in time to Vienna. I will enjoy a bowl of tobacco while time traveling. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Another Interesting Clean up of an Imported Briar KLEENEST Filter Billiard


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on my table was second pipe from threesome sent to for work from a fellow in Eastern Canada. This one is a partially rusticated Billiard. I found that it is stamped on the left side and read KLEENEST [over] Imported Briar. The bowl had a light cake and there was some lava and darkening on the back rim top and edge of the bowl. The bowl was slightly out of round from reaming. The finish was dark, dirty and oily feeling and the briar was semi rusticated. The lower half of the bowl and the shank were rusticated and there was a carved leaf on the front of the bowl above the rustication. The rest of the bowl was smooth. The stem is probably vulcanite and has a Medico style tenon that fits a 6MM filter. There were tooth marks and tooth chatter on both sides of the stem ahead of the button and on the surface. There is no stamping on the stem. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before I started my clean up. I also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The stamping on the sides of the shank are shown in the photos below. They are clear and readable as noted above.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of them to show the perspective on the pipe. You can see the burn marks on the bowl and shank and the scratches and fills in the briar.I googled the brand and found a gallery of pipes marked KLEENEST Imported Briar. Here is the link(https://pipes.collectionhero.com/outer/gallery_listings.php?keyword=Kleenest+#google_vignette).

In the pipes listed in the gallery there were ties to Kaywoodie, Medico, Grabow and some were stamped France and other Italy. The metal tenon in the shank reminds me very much of both a Grabow and a Medico pipe. The pipe photo I am including below has a similar style spacer and stem on a bowl that has the same style rustication finish. The description on the site is as follows:

RARE 1950s/60s KLEENEST … RARE 1950s/60s KLEENEST BRIAR Italy TOBACCO PIPEArmed with the information that I found online I turned my attention to the clean up of the pipe itself. I reamed out the remaining cake in the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and took the cake back to bare briar. I cleaned up the remnants in the bowl with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I finished the interior of the bowl with a piece of dowel wrapped in 220 grit sandpaper. The bowl looked very good with no damage or checking on the walls. I used a piece of 220 grit sandpaper to bring the bowl back into round. I cleaned off the rim top at the same time. It looked much better.

I scrubbed the externals of the bowl with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap. I worked over the bowl and the rim top. I rinsed with warm water to remove the debris and the soap. Once I dried it off you can see that there were still remnants of varnish on the briar that I would need to remove. You can see the sparkles of varnish on the photos above. It is both on the smooth portion of the bowl and the rusticated portion. I wiped the briar down with acetone on cotton pads to remove the varnish coat and clean off the briar. With the varnish removed you can see the burn marks on the right side of the bowl and the shank. I dried it off and took photos of it at this point in the process. There is some nice looking grain around the bowl and the rustication is quite rugged. The clean bowl and shank looks very good. I cleaned the airway and mortise in the shank and the tube airway in the stem until they were very clean. I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each  pad to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. The briar took on a newer, richer look.   I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips and into the rusticated portion with a shoe brush. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I “painted” the stem surface carefully with the flame of a lighter to try and lift the tooth marks. They lifted slightly. I filled in the marks that remained with clear CA glue. When the repairs cured I used a small file to reshape the button edge and flatten out the repairs. I sanded the repairs 220 grit sandpaper to blend them into the surface. I started the polishing process with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper. I polished the 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. I fit the stem with a paper Medico Filter in the metal tenon in the stem. It fit the tenon and into the shank and provided the smoker with a dry smoke.This Kleenest Imported Briar Filter Billiard is an interesting looking pipe now that it has been restored. The smooth portion of the finish highlights the grain and rustic portion gives a tactile sense to the pipe. 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 Kleenest Filter Billiard 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 ¾ inches, Height: 1 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 50 grams/1.76 ounces. I have one more pipe for this Eastern Canada Pipeman to work on. Once I have finished all three I will be sending them back to him to enjoy. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

An Interesting Clean up of a French Made Swiss Dry-Smoker Pot


Blog by Steve Laug

The next pipe on my table was part of threesome sent to for work from a fellow in Eastern Canada. This one is a pot shaped one that on first glance I thought was a Peterson’s Shamrock. This morning when I brought it to the table and examined it I found that it was not a Shamrock or a Peterson Product at all. Rather, it is stamped on the left side and read Swiss [over] Dry-Smoker. On the right side it reads Algerian Briar [over] Made in France. The bowl had a light cake and there was some darkening on the back rim top and edge of the bowl. There was some peeling varnish on the exterior of the bowl and shank. There were also burn marks on the left side of the bowl toward the front and on the left underside of the shank. The bowl had several grey putty fills on the heel of the bowl and on the right side at the shank bowl junction. They do not look deep but they are present in the finish. The shank end has a nickel ferrule. Looking inside the shank and the bowl were two airway entries at the bottom of the bowl and twin aluminum tubes in the end of the mortise. The stem is vulcanite and has a faux P-lip with the exit of the airway at the end of the button rather than on top. There were tooth marks and tooth chatter on both side of the stem ahead of the button and on the surface. It is stamped with an S on the left side of the taper stem. I took photos of the pipe before I started my work on it. I took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before I started my clean up. I also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The stamping on the sides of the shank are shown in the photos below. They are clear and readable as noted above.I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo of them to show the perspective on the pipe. You can see the burn marks on the bowl and shank and the scratches and fills in the briar.I turned to Pipephil’s site to see what I could learn about the French made Algerian Briar, Swiss Dry-Smoker brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-s14.html). I found the listing there but little background information on it.I followed a link at the bottom of the listing to a section on the shape and design of the stem (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/infos/p-lip-en.html). It is noted as a Swiss brand but is clearly stamped Made in France. I have included a screen capture of the section below.I googled the brand and found a discussion on Pipesmagazine.com about the Swiss Dry- Smoker (https://pipesmagazine.com/forums/threads/swiss-brand-pipes.1986/). In a thread there I found this information as well as a link to a Patent file.

Jun 27, 2014  I recently obtained a SWISS Dry Smoker myself. Its construction is along the line of the Peterson, however the “Well” is not like a Peterson nor the WDC Well System or the Kaywoodie/Yello Bole Chesterfield’s. It has what appears to be a brass tube with a slot that allows the moisture to be collected into it. This tube is aprox 1/8 diameter and seems to be about 3/4″ deep. The stem tip looks on the exterior like a P-Lip but the hole comes out straight and not towards the roof of the mouth.

More on this later with pics. I did find this Patent which may be related.
DRY SMOKING PIPE

I followed the Patent information link and found the application for a similar looking pipe from 1909. I am including that information and drawing below. (https://patentimages.storage.googleapis.com/54/b4/bd/6175f3f8539de1/US914498.pdf). I don’t believe the pipe I am working on is related to this one in other than the similar two air holes entering the bowl and the single brass line in the stem. The rest of the apparatus is not present in this pipe. Armed with the information that I found online I turned my attention to the clean up of the pipe itself. I reamed out the remaining cake in the bowl with a PipNet pipe reamer and took the cake back to bare briar. I cleaned up the remnants in the bowl with a Savinelli Fitsall Pipe Knife. I finished the interior of the bowl with a piece of dowel wrapped in 220 grit sandpaper. The bowl looked very good with no damage or checking on the walls. I scrubbed the externals of the bowl with a tooth brush and undiluted Murphy’s Oil Soap. I worked over the bowl and the rim top. I rinsed with warm water to remove the debris and the soap. Once I dried it off you can see that there were still remnants of varnish on the briar that I would need to remove. I wiped the briar down with acetone on cotton pads to remove the varnish coat and clean off the briar. With the varnish removed you can see the burn marks on the right side of the bowl and the shank. I used some 220 grit sandpaper to sand out the dark burn spots on the bowl and shank. I was able to significantly reduce them with the process. I sanded the darkening on the inner edge and the rim top to remove that damage. The photos of the bowl and shank to show the bowl at this point. I cleaned the airway and mortise in the shank and the tube airway in the stem until they were very clean. I filled in the shrunken fills on the bowl and shank with clear super glue. I set it aside for the fills to cure. Once it hardened I sanded them with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper. I polished the briar with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 1500-12000 grit pads. I wiped the bowl down after each  pad to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. The briar took on a newer, richer look.   I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I sanded out the tooth marks and some scratches in the stem sides with 220 grit sandpaper and started the polishing process with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper.I polished the stem with micromesh sanding pads – dry sanding with 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 Made in France Algerian Briar Swiss Dry-Smoker Pot is a good looking pipe now that it has been restored. The finish both highlights the grain and hides the fills. 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 Swiss Dry-Smoker Pot 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 ¾ inches, Height: 1 ½ inches, Outside diameter of the bowl: 1 ½ inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 50 grams/1.76 ounces. I have two more pipes for this Eastern Canada Pipeman to work on. Once I have finished all three I will be sending them back to him to enjoy. Thanks for reading this blog and my reflections on the pipe while I worked on it.

Restoring a Karl Erik Classic Diamond Shank Brandy


Blog by Steve Laug

This cool Saturday afternoon I decided to work on was another one that was purchased on 11/14/2022 in a lot of pipes that came to us from Copenhagen, Denmark  It is an interesting pipe with a shape that combines both a classic Brandy bowl with a diamond shank. The grain around both  is an interesting mixture. The pipe is stamped on the left underside of the shank and reads Karl [arched over] Erik. The pipe was a well used pipe when Jeff received it. There was dust and grime ground into the finish. The mixture of brown and black stains highlights some beautiful grain under the dirt. The bowl was heavily caked and there was an overflow of lava on the rim top. The inner edge was hard to see clearly and the lava could easily be hiding damage. The stem is vulcanite and was oxidized and dirty with light tooth marks and chatter on both sides ahead of the button and on the button itself. It has an interesting flair to the saddle portion of the stem that is characteristically Danish. Jeff took photos of the pipe before he started his clean up work on it. He took photos of the bowl and rim top to show what they looked like before his clean up. He also took some of the stem to show the condition of both sides. The photos of the sides and heel of the bowl show the uniquely stained grain around the bowl and shank. The mixture of black and brown stains adds depth finish on the pipe. Even under the grime it is a real beauty. The stamping on the left side the shank is shown in the photos below. It is clear and readable as noted above.Before I started my work on the pipe I wanted to see if I could find any information that would help me date this pipe and get a sense of the line. I turned to Pipephil to get a quick review of the brand (http://pipephil.eu/logos/en/logo-k1.html). The stamp on the stem shown in the photo below is different than the one I am working on. It includeds a K and an E while this one is just an E stamp. I have included a screen capture of the brand info there as well as a note in the side bar about Karl Erik Ottendahl along with a small picture.Brand created in 1965-66 by Karl Erik Ottendahl (1942 – 2004 †). In the best years he employed up to 15 craftsmen among which Bent Nielsen (see Benner) and Peder Christian Jeppesen. Former grading (ascending): from 4 to 1, and “Ekstravagant” (entirely hand made)

I then turned to Pipedia (https://pipedia.org/wiki/Karl_Erik) for more information. I am including just the opening remarks but would encourage you to give the link a read for a very interesting history of the brand. I quote:

Karl Erik Ottendahl (1942 – 2004) was born in Aalborg (Jutland), just a few miles from the very northernmost tip of Denmark. He began smoking a pipe when he was 14 and upon leaving school he started an apprenticeship in the craft as a lithographer at the age of 16.

While working as an apprentice he began hand carving pipes as a hobby. Many were given as gifts to his more senior colleagues. Upon completion of his apprenticeship he moved to Nairobi, Kenya to work as a lithographer during the 1962 war. While in that war torn country, he was unable to procure pipes for himself. In the face of such a predicament, he chose to continue to make pipes for his own use rather than go without.

Returning to Denmark after three years he couldn’t find a well paid occupation in his job, and so he began making a few pipes on the side to boost his income choosing his prenames “Karl Erik” – logo “KE” – for his label. When he managed to find some major Copenhagen pipe stores willing to sell his pieces his reputation grew little by little and he was finally able to purchase more and better machinery and began working full time as a pipe maker.

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 that the pipe was made sometime between 1965 and 2004. Now it was time to work on the pipe.

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. He cleaned out the inside of the shank and the airway in 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 and calcification as possible. He soaked the stem in Before & After Deoxidizer and rinsed it off with warm water. I took close up photos of the bowl, rim and the stem. You can see how clean the bowl and rim top and edges are. The stem is in good condition with light tooth marks and some chatter as noted above. I took photo of the stamping on the left underside of the shank. It is readable as noted above. I removed the stem from the shank and took a photo to give a sense of the proportions of the pipe.I started my work on the pipe working on the damage to the inner edge and the rim top with a folded piece of 220 grit sandpaper to bring the edge back into round. I then used a piece of 220 grit sandpaper and a wooden ball to clean up the bevel on the rim top and edges and it 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 to remove the grit. The bowl began to take on a rich shine. It is a beauty.   I stained the rim top with a Cherry Stain Pen to match the rest of the bowl and shank. The rim looks significantly better than when I started the process.I rubbed the bowl down with Before & After Restoration Balm. I worked it into the briar with my finger tips. I let it sit for 10 minutes and the Balm did its magic. It enlivens, cleans and preserves the briar. It certainly brought this bowl back to life. I buffed it off with a clean cloth and took the following photos. I set the bowl aside and turned my attention to the stem. I sanded out the tooth marks and some scratches in the stem sides with 220 grit sandpaper and started the polishing process with 600 grit wet dry sandpaper.I set the bowl aside and turned to work on the stem. I was able to polish out the tooth marks and chatter 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 Karl Erik Ottendahl Classic Brandy with a Diamond shank vulcanite saddle stem is a great looking pipe now that it has been restored. The beautiful finish really highlights the grain and 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 Karl Erik Bent Brandy 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 1/8 inches, Chamber diameter: 7/8 of an inch. The weight of the pipe is 44 grams / 1.55 ounces. I will be adding the pipe to the Danish Pipe Makers Section of the rebornpipes store. If you are interested in purchasing 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.