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 Upshall pipes?

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tarheel7734

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Age : 39
Location : Asheville NC
Registration date : 2014-10-16

PostSubject: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:20 am

I never got around to acquiring an Upshall pipe in the past as I was focused on Dunhill and ferndowns with an Ashtton and a few Pete's thrown in. I know they are quality, just not sure how they compare. I spoke to Motty in the past but just never got to follow through. Now that I am coming back to the pipe world and can't find the dunhill 5108 I so loved or the Ferndowns, Upshall is sneaking it's head in to the realm of possibilities. I am looking at A grade bent bulldog and Rhodesians.
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Richard Burley

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Location : North Coast NY
Registration date : 2011-04-09

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:02 am

Although I will admit to a prejudice in favor of the Dunhill Shell, I find the top brands pretty much interchangeable, as far as providing a good smoke. Upshalls, at least the old ones, are definitely in that category.  I have a couple.  As I remember, they were bears to break in though.  No idea what that signifies, if anything.
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monbla256

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Age : 71
Location : DFW Metroplex, Texas
Registration date : 2012-01-15

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:19 am

tarheel7734 wrote:
I never got around to acquiring an Upshall pipe in the past as I was focused on Dunhill and ferndowns with an Ashtton and a few Pete's thrown in. I know they are quality, just not sure how they compare. I spoke to Motty in the past but just never got to follow through. Now that I am coming back to the pipe world and can't find the dunhill 5108 I so loved or the Ferndowns,  Upshall is sneaking it's head in to the realm of possibilities. I am looking at A grade bent bulldog and Rhodesians.

As I'm sure you are aware, Upshall pipes were started by Barry Jones who had been Charatans Master carver for years and that they use (d) predominatly strait grained Grecian briar for their pipes . All the ones I've ever seen were really beautiful pipes and those folks I know who have 'em have always sung their praises. I don't think you'd go wrong with one ( or 2 or 3 or 4 ) Twisted Evil Twisted Evil Twisted Evil
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Wet Dottle

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Location : Littleton, CO
Registration date : 2008-02-27

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 22, 2014 12:21 pm

My opinion of Upshall pipes is not good. I have two, bought about 10 years ago, and both are mediocre pipes, certainly not worth the money paid for them. They look, feel, and smoke like much cheaper pipes. One leaks stain and always leaves my fingers red when I smoke it, the other has a poorly fitted silver band and a flimsy mouthpiece that oxidizes before your eyes. They both smoke wetter than average. I don't know where the good reputation these pipes have comes from, but I haven's seen it corroborated by my specimens.

What I would say to you is: inspect the pipe well before buying it. If you can't inspect it in hand, make sure that the return policy is good. Good luck.
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tarheel7734

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Age : 39
Location : Asheville NC
Registration date : 2014-10-16

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 22, 2014 12:49 pm

How would you compare a Northern Briar to an upshall?
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Retrogasm

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Age : 38
Location : Sweden
Registration date : 2014-08-10

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:44 pm

Okay, I'm not sure what the policy is on this on the BoB forums, but a moderator can remove this if I'm out of line.

Major disclosure right of the bat: I have no expertise knowledge of pipes whatsoever, I'm very new to the hobby and I probably wouldn't be able to separate a Dr Grabow from a Dunhill in a blind test.

Personally, I avoid Upshall pipes due to a thread over at another of the US pipe forums (http://pipesmagazine.com/forums/topic/astley-pipes-re-stamped-estate-pipes-photos#post-463373). The current owner of James Upshall pipes has also bought the rights to the Astley name, and as the thread details there's pretty convincing evidence that regular no-name pipes have been rebranded and sold as Astley pipes.

There's the further issue of the man that supposedly carves the JU pipes, Barry Jones, who appears to be a ghost. No one in the community has seen or spoken to him which appears odd considering that we're a pretty small and informal crowd.

The current owner of JUP took over in 1996 so by that logic you should be fine buying pipes documented to be before this year.

I'm simply not confident enough in my own knowledge about pipes to buy a JU or Astley pipe without wondering if I got ripped off.
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Richard Burley

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Location : North Coast NY
Registration date : 2011-04-09

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Thu Oct 23, 2014 1:20 am

Thanks for posting. Food for thought. I have often wondered about current ownership and production. Fortunately mine were purchased in the '70s, by me. If this guy really is doing this, he should be given a fair trial and then hung.
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ftrplt

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Age : 71
Location : Split between Raleigh, NC and OKC, OK
Registration date : 2007-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Thu Oct 23, 2014 1:20 pm

I own two. One is a long pencil-shank billiard; it's not worth a bucket of warm spit!! Made poorly; smokes crudy...After dang near 10 years, it still has a "woody" taste/aroma 3/4's down the bowl. No burnout; well caked. I dunno what it is. The other is one of the finest large, straight-grained, beautifully-made pipes I own. Thick walls, great top-rounded and bottom three sided beveled shank. and stem. Smokes like a dream. Stole it for $125 bucks three years ago off SP!!! Have no idea why it was priced so low! FWIW cheers FTRPLT
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jvillaveces

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Age : 52
Location : Bogota, Colombia
Registration date : 2010-05-09

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Thu Oct 23, 2014 7:18 pm

A few years ago I bought three separate Upshall pipes listed as "new old stock" on ebay.  They were all grade P.  One of them, a straight bulldog, had the stem drilled off center so it gurgles like crazy.  Another, a bent pot, had a horrible looking logo stamp -- I confronted the seller (the owner of the brand) who insisted it was new.  Now, based on this thread, I believe I got and old bowl with a new stem.  The final one, a little pot, turned out just like I expected and is a sweet smoker.  Nevertheless, as a result of this experience, I decided not to bother with "new" Upshalls any more, and have never felt the urge to chase presmoked ones.
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riff raff

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Location : Western Maryland
Registration date : 2011-05-24

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Thu Oct 23, 2014 9:41 pm

I'm a fan of the older James Upshalls. I would not buy a James Upshall from the current owner or any of the NOS pipes he sells on Ebay. Unfortunately, it is difficult to determine older production as the pipes were not dated (sometimes you can tell by the style of the stamping).
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tarheel7734

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Age : 39
Location : Asheville NC
Registration date : 2014-10-16

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Fri Oct 24, 2014 3:44 am

Thanks. I will pass on an Upshall for now and go with custom bespoke Northern Briars.
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Zeno Marx

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Registration date : 2010-06-26

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Sat Oct 25, 2014 4:07 pm

riff raff wrote:
I'm a fan of the older James Upshalls.  I would not buy a James Upshall from the current owner or any of the NOS pipes he sells on Ebay.  Unfortunately, it is difficult to determine older production as the pipes were not dated (sometimes you can tell by the style of the stamping).  
agreed. The new owner has managed to sully everything he touches and sells, including brands me might not own. Why are his older Ashton magnums just sitting on eBay? Nobody trusts him, what he says, or the provenance he describes. It's obviously unfortunate. James Upshall used to be fine pipes at competitive prices.
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KevinM



Age : 74
Location : Connecticut
Registration date : 2012-02-26

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Tue Oct 28, 2014 10:23 pm

I have an Upshall Dublin, P grade. Bought it refurbed by Carole at Pipeworks & Wilke. Don't know how old it is. Stamping, drilling seem aok to me. Very nice example of the Brit Dublin style -- elegant, looks slightly stretched, mouthpiece is bent maybe a degree, bowl is canted just enough, proportions are perfect, flame grain almost all the way around. Very good smoker; gets on well with just about everything I put into it.
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Grumpy



Registration date : 2014-10-25

PostSubject: Upshall   Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:31 pm

I think I will sooner or later buy one as my daughter bid on one on Ebay for me last week; I just didn't get it. They are probably good pipes, but as with anything else, there are those that were hand made on a bad day. Too bad about the rumors about the company. The owner needs to clear that stuff up. I've met mostly good people in this hobby. Maybe its just the hobbyists that are the good ones.

You can't operate a business like that. One thing, I see he has 100% positive feedback on Ebay.
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riff raff

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Location : Western Maryland
Registration date : 2011-05-24

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Wed Oct 29, 2014 6:28 pm

Grumpy wrote:


You can't operate a business like that. One thing, I see he has 100% positive feedback on Ebay.

He's been taking criticism for years, and doesn't seem to care. Good point on the feedback. The pipes are probably constructed properly, but the provenance is questionable. I bet most folks don't give a hoot about the provenance. (by the feedback, apparently not!)
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Zeno Marx

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Registration date : 2010-06-26

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Sat Feb 04, 2017 9:07 pm

Look who is at it again. 1987 Ashton magnum new in box. that should all be in quotes with a few winks.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1987-ASHTON-MAGNUM-PEBBLE-GRAIN-CHERRYWOOD-SHAPED-BRIAR-F-H-NEW-BOX-/401233190606
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tarheel7734

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Age : 39
Location : Asheville NC
Registration date : 2014-10-16

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Sat Feb 04, 2017 9:16 pm

Zeno Marx wrote:
Look who is at it again.  1987 Ashton magnum new in box.  that should all be in quotes with a few winks.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1987-ASHTON-MAGNUM-PEBBLE-GRAIN-CHERRYWOOD-SHAPED-BRIAR-F-H-NEW-BOX-/401233190606

Seeing as how Motty passed away several months back and Karen is just selling all the pipes that were left, what are you trying to imply? You need to stop slinging dirt when you dont know what is going on.

I received two great pipes from Karen recently that were authenticated through other means i have by Ken Barnes, Barry Jones, and Les Wood, an I am quite thrilled with them. Karen is doing a great job with handling what is left with the help of some friends (pipe makers), and might make a mistake, but is not Motty and does not try to deceive anyone.

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Zeno Marx

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Registration date : 2010-06-26

PostSubject: Re: Upshall pipes?   Sun Feb 05, 2017 5:23 pm

tarheel7734 wrote:
Zeno Marx wrote:
Look who is at it again.  1987 Ashton magnum new in box.  that should all be in quotes with a few winks.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1987-ASHTON-MAGNUM-PEBBLE-GRAIN-CHERRYWOOD-SHAPED-BRIAR-F-H-NEW-BOX-/401233190606

Seeing as how Motty passed away several months back and Karen is just selling all the pipes that were left, what are you trying to imply? You need to stop slinging dirt when you dont know what is going on.

I received two great pipes from Karen recently that were authenticated through other means i have by Ken Barnes, Barry Jones, and Les Wood, an I am quite thrilled with them. Karen is doing a great job with handling what is left with the help of some friends (pipe makers), and might make a mistake, but is not Motty and does not try to deceive anyone.
First, I want to thank you for posting this information. It's important information to get out here. Really is. Prior to this information, I was merely implying what has long been suspected of new Upshalls, Astleys, and some Ashtons. I'd be the first to admit that I didn't, and don't, understand all the workings of these brands, but one has to concede that there was a lot of weird stuff happening in the past several years that reasonably brought about suspicion and doubt at worst and confusion and hesitancy at best. And those kinds of reactions and feelings don't disappear without a trace, so in many situations, other people are left holding the bag. A hundred years of building a brand of integrity can crumble at the wrong hands in five minutes. I don't know Karen, but I wish her well.
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