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Thread: 1917 Dunhill Inner Tube 39 Restoration [pic heavy]

  1. #1
    PSU Member Piffyr's Avatar
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    1917 Dunhill Inner Tube 39 Restoration [pic heavy]

    I don’t post a lot of my work these days. After a while, it can get kind of “been there, seen that,” but I just couldn’t let this one pass without showing it off...

    For the most part, this old Dunhill was in impressively solid condition when it arrived for some work. As to be expected with a pipe of this age, the stummel had accumulated a few small dings over the years, but the stem had only light tooth chatter and it was mostly free of oxidation. All of the stamping, including the reg. number on the bottom of the stem, was intact and crisp. So it was doubly sad to see that someone had decided to aggressively ream the bowl with a pipe knife and they had carved some sizable gouges into the chamber. To make matters worse, it looked like they had used the same to remove the rim cake, which left it in a similar condition. Here are a few photos of the pipe upon arrival:









    The owner didn’t want the completed pipe to look brand-new. He wanted it to look like a well-loved, 100-year-old pipe that was ready for 100 more. Challenge accepted!
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    PSU Member Piffyr's Avatar
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    The pipe was first reamed and the internals of the stem and stummel were thoroughly cleaned (no ghosts here!). Then, I rebuilt the gouged areas in the chamber with a heat resistant compound. Since old wood is dry and tends to burn more readily than the fresher stuff, I applied an additional layer of thermal insulation over the entire chamber for some extra protection.

    Once the chamber was taken care of, something had to be done about the rim. It had to be topped of course, but carefully and judiciously so. It needed to look clean and sturdy, but not so fresh and crisp that it looked out of place in comparison to the rest of the pipe. Above all, of course, the profile of the pipe couldn’t be altered to any appreciable degree. It’s a balancing act and, in the end, I think I found the balance after taking slightly less than 1 mm off. I think the pipe is still probably within production tolerances for the shape and the remaining dings along the outer rim appear appropriate for a pipe of this age.

    After that, there was nothing left to do but restain the rim, steam out a few of the surface blemishes, remove some stem scratches, polish, and wax. Here’s the finished pipe:









    Aside from being a nice example of an old, Brit-made pipe, there’s some additional history attached to this particular Dunhill. Hopefully, I can get the owner to join in the conversation and share it with the rest of you guys.
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  3. #3
    ADMINISTRATOR dmcmtk's Avatar
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    A very special old Dunhill everyone. You all have no idea how much time Anthony and I spent on the phone figuring out the exact dating on this one!

  4. #4
    PSU Member Piffyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmcmtk View Post
    A very special old Dunhill everyone. You all have no idea how much time Anthony and I spent on the phone figuring out the exact dating on this one!
    And, thus was born the field of "forensic pipeology".
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    PSU Member Rockbass's Avatar
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    I've never been there or done that, so I think your work is pipe-myth-ology, and never tire of seeing the results.
    I can resist anything but temptation--Oscar Wilde

  6. #6
    PSU Member Piffyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rockbass View Post
    I've never been there or done that, so I think your work is pipe-myth-ology, and never tire of seeing the results.
    Thanks, Thomas. Some of it can be pretty boring in photos though. "Hmm... That pipe doesn't have a stem. ... Oh, look. Now, it does."
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    Anthony, the ends - and what ends they are! - need the 'means'. And we love to see the means, even if they seem boring to the doer!

  8. #8
    PSU Member Piffyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plugugly View Post
    And we love to see the means, even if they seem boring to the doer!
    Not at all! In fact, the things that I find the most fascinating are the things that usually escape casual attention or are hidden in the details.
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  9. #9
    PSU Member Gus's Avatar
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    i´m not a fan of dunhill pipes, but this is a great job Anthony, congrats and enjoy it with a good health

  10. #10
    PSU Member BillyPM's Avatar
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    I'm no longer surprised by these examples of your prowess, buddy. But THIS ONE is really something. It's not just the things you did, it's the things you left undone, and the soulfulness of the decision making process. I really love that pipe.
    Billy
    --------
    Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.

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