About my restoration method
All pipes that fall into my hands are thoroughly processed. The purpose is not only to restore the exterior of the pipe, but more importantly — to return it to the highest sweetness of smoking. The full restoration process in my Workshop includes the following stages:
1. Primary cleaning
Full reaming of the coke (up to the clean wood). Removing old coke also removes the majority of stinking odors and smacks.
2. Deep steam cleaning & washing
I always scrub the bowl with a tooth brush, using the dishwasher detergent. The next step is to clean the tobacco chamber and shank bore using steam generator, ethanol, and a hard pipe cleaner. I repeat those steps until the bowl is thoroughly clean. When finished, I let the bowl dry for twenty four hours under the stream of dry air, at 140F (60C) or higher.
3. Stem Improvements
While the bowl is drying, I work on the stem. Ronni Bikacsan recommends to re-drill the stem bore to 3.5 mm. However, I introduce my own method of opening the stem. Using this method, I modify the bore in tenon to make it cone-shaped. This modification lets me remove an obstruction from the passageway, which would otherwise create unnecessary turbulence & condense moisture. I also widen a bore a bit, if necessary.
4. Bowl Restoration
When the bowl is finally dry, I clean and polish the tobacco chamber. In addition, I re-drill the shank bore to 3.5 mm, or up to 4 mm, if necessary. Then I remove outer defects: dents, scratches and charred edges of the bowl. Finally I restore stain, if necessary.
5. Stem Sanitization
I clean the stem bore with a hard cleaner & ethanol.
6. Final Buffing & Polishing
I remove oxidization from mouthpiece and polish and buff the pipe surface, first with sandpaper, then with the buffing wheel & white compound. I do not use carnauba wax, because it does not really polish, but gives the outward appearance of polishing.
As a final step, I always break a pipe in by repeatedly smoking it using non-aromatic Virginian tobaccos (for example, FVF, GLP Union Square or PS Bullseye Flake). That allows me to identify possible shortcomings, as well as off-flavors and odors. And if that happens, this pipe will not be made available for sale until I can fix the defects.
Restoration of 9-mm filter pipes
The 9 mm filter pipes often provide poor smoking experience without a filter — the shoulder of tenon collects condensed moisture abundantly. So usually these pipes fitted with a tenon adapter for unfiltered smoking.
However, this method has several disadvantages. For example, there is always a gap between the adapter and the shoulder of tenon. This gap will accumulate tar deposits that will be very difficult to clean. Another possible issue is the air passage misalignment in the string «mouthpiece=>adapter=>shank».
I solve these problems by taper-boring the tenon (see pictures). After this procedure, the smoke in the pipe can go through the air passage unobstructed and pass directly into the bit bore, without the extra twists and with no condensed moisture. There is no more condensate then with the usual filterless pipe.
However, unlike the adapter-fitted pipe, this one can be smoked with or without a filter!
I strive to offer my customers the best quality pipes and smoking accessories. Unless otherwise stated, all my pipes are used but in NEAR NEW condition.