New look for a no-name pipe

Here was a tired meer lined no name pipe from Italy. The only reason I know the country of origin is the stem has Italy stamped on the bottom. The pipe was clean, just dull and tired. The vulcanite had a few tooth marks which I lifted with the flame of a lighter.

Sorry for the lack of pics. I think the above is after receiving the pipe and finding an acrylic stem to match the shank. This was sent to me for a replacement stem because the vulcanite was worn.I didn’t think a new stem was necessary especially after restoring the original stem to new condition.  But after seeing the finished product,  it definitely adds a lot to the pipe. 

Here is a pre-drilled acrylic stem blank. 

I had to drill out and insert a tenon then dremel and sand it flush with the shank. It was too long for the stummel when compared to the original stem. 

So with the owners permission. ..

I cut it with a dremel cutting wheel.

I cut a line for the bit and used files and sandpaper to shape the end. Slot funneling tool made quick work of creating and opening the new slot.

I sanded and buffed the stem to a nice shine. Next I stained the stummel with black and wiped off most with alcohol. Then a coat of dark brown which j let sit for several hours. Then a rubdown with alcohol and buffed with green and red tripoli, white diamond and carnauba wax followed up with a clean flannel buff. 

The new length and taper of the stem fits so much better and looks awesome. I never would have put an acrylic stem on because the original was perfect, why spend money needlessly? I’ll admit the cost of a new stem changes the pipe from okay to wow! Seems  like the customer is always right rings true for sure!

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Irish Made 999

Here is a repair all too common on these Rhodesian pipes. The owner bangs it to tap out the ash and the briar chips off on the thin rings. This one also had a large burn mark on the rim from a cigar torch lighter but not as bad as some I’ve run across.

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I lightly topped the rim and sanded as much as possible without changing the profile. After wiping down the stummel with alcohol, I filled the missing piece with CA and briar chips, ending with chips on top.

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After drying, I filed and sanded down flush with the surface, then used a serrated knife to cut the grooves back in. A wipedown of olive oil and off to the buffers: green and red tripoli, white diamond, carnauba wax and a final clean buff. The stem had minor tooth marks which were removed with a little heat and sanded/buffed to a mirror finish. Thanks for looking!

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Peterson’s Emerald 80s

This Emerald 80s by Peterson’s had seen better days. Maybe I could turn back the hands of time to an age where this pipe was new and never subjected to the horrific abuse it has seen.

The 2 main issues were some briar knocked out of the rings on the left side and the stem. The stem. Wow, one of the worst I’ve ever seen. It was heavily calcified and the top had been chewed enough to where the airway was exposed. The bottom had a trench cut across also. Oh yeah, the rim was out of round from a careless hack job reaming it.

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I almost forgot the band was loose, the front of the bowl had some scratches and the loose tenon was fixed with a bunch of dental floss.

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The stem went into extensive repeated oxyclean soak/scrub until it could be sanded with 100 grit sandpaper, 150 and 220. I wrapped a pipecleaner with tape and ran it through the stem to where the tape was in the repair area and wouldn’t let the glue stick to the pipecleaner.

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I used black CA glue mixed with powdered charcoal to layer up enough to fill the holes and sand smooth. This took several layers obviously.

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I used tape to keep the edge sharp during one glue session.

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After more layers to fill minute airholes, it was done. Sanding and buffing finished the stem. Also heated the tenon and expanded it with a tapered wooden dowel to fit tight. Refreshed the P with grout whitener to put the icing on the cake.

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Alternating with the stem work, I worked on the bowl. The grooves were cleaned out after wiping the bowl with alcohol. I filled the area with clear CA glue and briar chips.

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After drying,  I used files to cut the lines and sanded it smooth.

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The rim was lightly sanded to try to bring it back into round. Buffed the pipe and stem and glad this beast is beaten!

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Thanks for looking!

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Caminetto 8-L09 restored

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I got this, my first Caminetto, for a song off ebay. The seller refunded part of my payment for not disclosing the burned down rim. I’m sure the seller had no evil intent, just honest ignorance from not actually smoking a pipe but just flipping them from an estate sale. The pics showed it was in good shape aside from some tooth chatter on the acrylic stem. What the pics failed to show fully was the area on the front of the rim that was burned with a jet lighter, resulting in a dip or gouge of at least a quarter inch of burn out.

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The tooth chatter was sanded smooth and I repositioned the band that had moved away from the stem, exposing a bit of briar.

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Now the fun begins! After reaming the bowl, I sanded the charred area of the rim down to solid briar. Oh the careless abuse some pipes suffer!

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Next I built it back up with CA glue and briar chips, finishing with chips on top.

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After it had cured, I rough sanded it and added some rustication to match the craggy original surface. I use a modified Phillips screwdriver and it slipped one time.

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I smashed the Caminetto into dust, the end.

Actually they say an artist must suffer for his work and put some blood sweat and tears into it and I did all three on this one.
Some stain matching and a bowl coating and it’s good to go!

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She smokes great and is a favorite shape already. It fits nicely in my hand. Thanks for looking!

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Shortening a stem

I have a Peterson’s Sterling Silver X105 with a F/T replacement stem. It’s hallmarked with an S but I’m not sure if it’s 1983 or 2003. Anyway, I think the stem is too massive for this pipe. Despite having many other pipes awaiting a renewal, I got a wild hair and decided to shorten the stem.

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Here it’s compared to a DeLuxe X105 with a P-lip. As you can see, it’s just too large, even though it mated to the shank perfectly.

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I scored a line where I wanted to shorten it to.
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I used my dremel to cut it down to about a 1/4″ before the line. So the line would be filed down to define the bit. I used a small file and sandpapers to take off as much excess vulcanite as I could to narrow the profile of the shape. I used a grinding disk on my dremel that I saved just for the purpose of cutting a slot in the end. Then a slot file to funnel it out to pass a pipe cleaner.
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I wasn’t too neat cutting the slot and I will go slower next time.

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The bit came out real good and the flow of the stem is more fitting to the X105 shape. See how it compares to the DeLuxe with factory stem.

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Now that little nagging voice can shut up. Every time I’d smoke that pipe, it kept telling me to cut it down. I wonder which is the next pipe to call out to me to repair a fill, a little extra sanding or make a stem adjustment instead of just being able to enjoy the smoke. It’s not like I don’t have enough bowls and pipes to work on!

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Thanks for looking!

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Reworking a Peterson’s System 3 363 pipe

Here is my refurb on a Pre-Republic Peterson’s System pipe I got from ebay. It’s marked Peterson’s System 3, 363, Made in Eire in the circle format dating it to 1938 to 41. The nomenclature was almost buffed off, barely visible under magnification.

It was dark and grimy from many years of use, with a large burn mark on the shank. The rim had lava overflow and the outer edge had been banged enough to round it in a large area. The cake was rock hard in the lower half of the bowl. The stem was oxidized with some tooth chatter but my main challenge was that someone had filed most of the P-lip off.

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Okay, the cake was reamed out, I had to use the dremel along with my Castleford reamer. I said it was like cement earlier and I wasn’t joking! Then I did the cotton ball / alcohol treatment overnight. I put the stem in its oxyclean soak and scrubbed with a green sponge every few hours as the oxidation softened. Then I used the green and red tripoli on the stem while it was fresh from its soak. I got almost all the oxidation off this way. Then I used 220 paper on the bottom to get rid of the tooth chatter. I used charcoal and the medium black CA glue to build up the bit from the airhole to where it should be on a normal P-lip. I layered it on the edge and hung the stem upside down so the glue would dry into the proper position. I used many layers to build it up until it was looking like a factory P-lip stem. I also filled some deep dents and built up the bottom edge of the bit and let it dry in a horizontal position. Several layers were done until it was done. Overall it was several days work with the drying time between applications. I don’t use accelerator mainly because I wanted the strongest bond I could get, and I ran out, lol.
I apologize to any readers who aren’t familiar with the P-lip stem. The airhole is on the top of the bit to direct the smoke onto the roof of the mouth instead of burning the tounge.

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I used files, sanding blocks and all grits of paper to get it cleaned up. After the buffers, it looks pretty close to factory, even under magnification.

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Meanwhile I was working on the stummel after the alcohol soak to remove ghosts and soften the tars in the System “well” which is designed to catch all the tars. The usual thick buildup can be prevented by swabbing out with a qtip after each smoke. Since the previous owners didn’t do this, I scrubbed it with pipe cleaners and qtips until they came out clean. The outside was wiped with an alcohol soaked pad and the rim was scrubbed with a green sponge to get the lava off. I lightly topped the bowl and sanded the outerĀ  edge slightly to smooth the roughness, not wanting to alter the original shape. I used bleach on a qtip on the burn area on the shank, gently dabbing until moist. I have found out the hard way it doesn’t take long to go from lightening a burn to bleaching white, which stands out as bad as a black spot. I used olive oil to blend the area and a medium brown stain wash over the whole pipe. Then I buffed it being careful around the nomenclature. Here it is, not bad for a 75 year old pipe!

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Thanks for looking!

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Peterson’s Irish Made 999 trial and ERROR

This post details my trials and error in my resto on a Peterson’s Irish Made 999. The pics show the rim char I had to work with.

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I reamed out the rock hard cake with extreme difficulty, then did the alcohol treatment followed by cleaning the shank.
I topped it slightly and lightly sanded the burn area on the back of the bowl. I couldn’t sand the burn out so I used bleach on a qtip and dabbed the burn area and let dry. Bleach is very whitening so it must not be overused. It seemed to get lighter as it kept drying. I built up the depression with briar chips and CA glue. After sanding it down, I redid a small area on the inside of the rim.

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After another round of sanding, I used Medium Brown dye on the whole pipe except the burn area. I applied with a qtip to have more control. After running through all the buffer wheels, here is the finished pipe. It is very nice grain, a shame it was carelessly lit, to burn a gouge in the rim that deep. The stem was shockingly free of gnarly tooth marks and in pristine condition. The bowl is round again and the slope of the rim is where it should be. Only in certain angles or lights can you see the repair. I’m disappointed I didn’t grind out the burned out area more, the sides of the repair are black, and maybe I should have cut a briar plug instead of the chip buildup. If I keep it, it could be a yard pipe the way it is now.

Stop the presses!
My better half suggested rusticating the area above the grooves and stain it jet black. Upon reflection, that sounds like it could work and maybe even make a cool pipe even cooler! I’ll probably not start phase 2 of the resto for awhile if I do it, I’ve spent way too much time with this pipe for now, having to repeat the buildup process and covering a few pin holes with CA glue.

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What do you think about the proposed phase 2 of this project, stop or go?

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