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  1. Sasquatch

    Old briar

    Briar plants have always been harvested at a certain level of maturity - too young, they are small, and won't yield enough pipes. Too old, they will be cracked, full of insects, etc. So that window is 30 years at a minimum, often 50 years, to .... I dunno 100 year old tree? In any case...
  2. Sasquatch

    FishnBanjo Memorial?

    Just for clarity, I was not suggesting changing the name of this area AWAY from a nod to Fishnbanjo, but rather that indicating he is no longer, as it were, an active member, might be appropriate.
  3. Sasquatch

    FishnBanjo Memorial?

    It looks like our friend has passed, possibly a re-name of this part of the forum would be appropriate? Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/name/sante-giuliani-obituary?pid=193186032&fbclid=IwAR2qwTHzMmABhnqOCEbgSUXjJP4bSiYBbFrVXKXPOueTjHCqwmVgje5rl1Y
  4. Sasquatch

    How is an Oom Paul smoke channel drilled?

    Yeah, lots of boundaries are being pushed, lots of "non standard" stuff comes out of artisan shops in search of making legitimate physical improvements on difficult shapes (never mind weird stuff like "reverse calabash" ideas too). The bar has been raised in the ten or so years I've been...
  5. Sasquatch

    How is an Oom Paul smoke channel drilled?

    Ser Jacopo does it frequently - the rig amounts to a little grinding head attached to a flexible shaft, and run through a curved tube. Issue being this thing cuts a hole about 1/4" wide. I had a couple made this way, and they were... fine... no real issues. But I didn't prefer them or find...
  6. Sasquatch

    How is an Oom Paul smoke channel drilled?

    Most are drillled horribly. To do it just right takes patience and a bit of skill. With a skinny mortise, drilled into the wall... not so good. With a wider mortise and a little care, you can "nail it"
  7. Sasquatch

    the art and vision of the freehand

    It's really, really hard to pinpoint a good vs bad freehand, or when something is "art" vs a grade 8 shop project. Just where those lines are drawn... Personally I find the Charatan freehands super ugly, just out of proportion and basically pretty bad looking. They seem random and pointless...
  8. Sasquatch

    Rumblings in The Force

    I had beans at lunch. Or, uh, maybe that's not quite what you meant...
  9. Sasquatch

    Are Castellos Better Than Radices?

    Castellos are not twice as expensive as Radices in Italy - try buying direct and you'll feel better about the price point I think. Anyway, in terms of "quality" I suppose it depends on how you are judging. I think both brands smoke well. Castello's worst stem work and shaping is pretty bad...
  10. Sasquatch

    bi-level tenons - good? bad?

    To convince me that it's good, you'd have to show me how it improves the fit compared to a traditional tenon/mortise assembly. I consider every pipe I've had with that kind of "nipple" tenon to be an absolute dog of a smoker - I'd far rather see a deep funnel in a regular tenon.
  11. Sasquatch

    Without Warning, an Assessment

    That astonishes me. I've had two Ascortis and hated them both as smokers. Utterly lifeless pipes.
  12. Sasquatch

    Without Warning, an Assessment

    WHAT isn't a pipe? I think you are confused between freehand and handmade. Here's a handmade pipe that isn't a freehand. It's more or less a copy of a GBD pot, only the grain is crazy nice. What's not "pipe" about this?
  13. Sasquatch

    Without Warning, an Assessment

    Psssst... hey buddy.... wanna buy a pipe? I jest - actually I took this pic in the shop the day the pipe was done, took it to a pipe-club type thing that night, and it never came home with me. Fancy pipes sell, there's buyers for all kinds of stuff, but classics, done right, done tight...
  14. Sasquatch

    Without Warning, an Assessment

    Basically that's where I live too. Plain and perfect. Most of the pipes I smoke are dressed down boring shapes and finishes, and most of what I make is the same. Give me wood and ebonite. The Italians I appreciate are Castellos more than any other brand, and even then, only 1/10 or so is...
  15. Sasquatch

    Savinelli Ultra Billiard

    Yeah, Sav generally does not coat the bowls on Autographs, Giubileos, and I think Punto smooths. Maybe they are getting the message that not every pipe smoker wants filters too. I forgot about the 300 dollars I'd be saving by buying this. That certainly makes it a lot more attractive...
  16. Sasquatch

    Savinelli Ultra Billiard

    Nice pipe, goofy price. Rather have a Sea Rock for 1/5th the coin anyhow. That's the only relation to Castello I see. :pirat:
  17. Sasquatch

    Vermont Freehand pipes

    Pretty sure the pipes are made by briarworks, who are a very knowledgeable crew indeed. But honestly, Steve is such a straightforward dude if you emailed him and asked him, he'd give you an honest answer about the pipes. This is one of the guys I trust 100% in the industry.
  18. Sasquatch

    What constitutes a high grade pipe?

    I agree with all that. I'd just add that there's "high grade" rustication and "sundeck" rustication. Check out a Castello Sea Rock vs a Peterson Kinsale and there's a world of difference between carving an intricate texture and buffing it just smooth enough vs tapping a piece with a dremel...
  19. Sasquatch

    What constitutes a high grade pipe?

    AT some point, you are paying for a name, or rarity of production (a rare shape, a rare grade of briar, a carver who only makes 20 a year, whatever). A 500 dollar pipe should exhibit noticeably, obvious differences in quality all the way around over a 100 dollar pipe. A 2000 pipe probably...
  20. Sasquatch

    What constitutes a high grade pipe?

    Here's another "good" pipe - nice shape, nice even crisp coloration, even though not spectacular sandblast. and here's the high grade version, where you say "holy shit" Now I'm using very plain examples, partly cuz I don't carve reverse-speared blowfish (go look at Abe Herbaugh's...
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