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What's It Worth?

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Dock

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OK,So I'm eagerly watching a pipe on e-bay that goes up in a few days.It's a large Granhill freehand with a plateau bottom.I know nothing of this carver except for the fact that he's from Fargo ND and I don't think he still makes pipes.I really DO want it and am fully prepared to spend considerably to get it.My question is,what do you folks THINK is a fair market value for this pipe?It's very hard to judge it's value as it's a nice piece from a carver who's pipes don't see the estate market very often.Below is a pic of it: Tell me what you think:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=300188294598&_trksid=p3907.m32&_trkparms=tab%3DWatching

Best,
Dock
:pipe:
 

jhuggett

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That's a tough one. Fair price to me seems like 150. It's a nice piece but not amazing, and from a not so well know maker. It might smoke like a dirty kitchen sponge. :lol:

Of course that's completely my opinion and the next bidder might think it's worth a grand.
 

showme1or2

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That is a great question in general, Dock, applicable to all of us, but particularly newbies.

My first pipe was an ebay special and I thought it was the cat's meow. It smokes good and I like it, but I've only ever seen one other of the same brand (Royal House, Ltd.) and the reason is probably because it is not a great pipe. I was so proud of this pipe, until I found out about grain and other things. Then my opinion dropped a little bit. Then as I learned of other factors (stem fit, passing pipe cleaner) I was saddened more. What happened? Why my disappointment? My perspective had changed and so had my expectations, but the pipe was still the same thing that had given me so much joy up to the point of becoming more educated. (Is ignorance truly bliss? Maybe.)

I think all of us love to buy pipes low and find that their value is much higher than what we paid. This makes us a good bargain finder, right? We could certainly increase our money if we decide to sell, too. But what about those pipes that are not quite "worth" (money value) the price we pay. Why do we not mention right away what we gave for them? (You do have some of these, don't you? Or is it just me?)

I will pay more than fair market value for a pipe if it is from a maker I particularly like. I will pass on great deals from makers I don't know or like. But what is a pipe worth when you don't know the maker? I think from here you should judge by your level of experience. Some of us here can tell to a high level the degree of workmanship in a pipe. Others, like me, can tell which way the grain is going and if it passes a cleaner. If I like the shape and the pipe is in good condition, I will likely buy regardless of the maker. If Tom Eltang happens to have made this pipe, then I will love it!

Value is a strange thing, dependent upon so many variables both personal and economic. What category does the maker fall into? Resale value? Personal appreciation? Status in your pipe club or collection?

I have two pipes that have been crafted by Eltang. One was machined by Former and finished by Eltang (Bisgaard house pipe). The other is a Sara Eltang line pipe. To me, both of these pipes are Eltang "products." But to someone else they may not be "true" Eltangs. If Tom Eltang himself were to present me with a pipe he made from scratch, where would I rank it in line with the other two pipes? Why? I don't know the answers to these questions. When Tom gives me such a pipe I will let you know. :D

Good question, Dock.

showme
 

bronxbill

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Doc,
I'm with Jason, I might go $150 to $200. I have purchased from that seller before and it was a good experience if that helps any. Good luck.
Bill
 

Puff Daddy

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Just checked my copy of Pipes - Artisans and trademarks. Commentary reads :

Gran Hill - North American brand of a Fargo tobacconist's belonging to Lonnie Fay in the 1970's. Lonnie has made some freehands bearing this stamp.

There is also a foot note stating that Tom Colwell also mentions an English brand with this name. No cross reference for Lonnie Fay.


Just from that little bit of info and in looking at the pipe I'd say that I have no idea what it COULD be worth, but if I really wanted it I could see dropping a couple hundred on it. The ring grain that's visible around the bowl is pretty cool (looks like it would have made a great blast) and the aesthetic with the plateau foot is quite unique, good looking finish overall. The only thing that detracts from the beauty for me is the stem but that too seems fitting for the freehand style and time (1970's) when the pipe was likely carved.
 

Justpipes

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Dock,

That is a very awesome and interesting looking pipe for sure.

I believe this is a matter of how much it is worth to the individual collector. The carver is oviously not a well known highly sought after mark but in the piece itself you have stated that "I really DO want it and I am prepared to spend considerably to get it". That being said it is a matter of desire for having the piece in your posession and what you personally are willing to pay for it. I believe it would be very hard to put a value on that pipe for that very reason. I believe that just becasue it is such a beautiful unusual piece it could draw a rather large bid.

I am afraid that you are going to have to go with your own gut feeling on this one because what you might be willing to pay, another man might think it foolish and you are the one that is going to have to live with it.
 
A

Anonymous

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I have seen that style--with the flat bottom piece--on smokingpipes.com, I think, recently. Maybe Lanatra or even Castello. Somebody is bringing that shape back. Might be good to consider the new version, too.
 
A

Anonymous

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D.J. Perry":4di9j4lb said:
OK,So I'm eagerly watching a pipe on e-bay that goes up in a few days.It's a large Granhill freehand with a plateau bottom.I know nothing of this carver except for the fact that he's from Fargo ND and I don't think he still makes pipes.I really DO want it and am fully prepared to spend considerably to get it.My question is,what do you folks THINK is a fair market value for this pipe?It's very hard to judge it's value as it's a nice piece from a carver who's pipes don't see the estate market very often.Below is a pic of it: Tell me what you think:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=300188294598&_trksid=p3907.m32&_trkparms=tab%3DWatching

Best,
Dock
:pipe:
I dunno, Dock. I'm a traditionalist, so it's not my cup of tea and I can't imagine smoking it. On the other hand, it is unique. If I wanted it, I would be willing to part with $100.00 but no higher.
 

Dock

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Thanks for all the help everyone...The general concensus seems to be between $100.00-$200.00 and that falls in line with my own opinion.Hopefully I'll be able to post of my purchasing it come Sunday :)

Rock On! :twisted:

Dock
 

hagley

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If you win the pipe, you can send it to Mark Tinsky, and he can finish the pipe for you, and remove that excess wood from the bottom. Just a couple minutes on a disc sander, and there you go.

Mike
 

Puff Daddy

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hagley":4omsjydc said:
If you win the pipe, you can send it to Mark Tinsky, and he can finish the pipe for you, and remove that excess wood from the bottom. Just a couple minutes on a disc sander, and there you go.

Mike


:lol!: Thus turning it into a decent $40 pipe :lol:
 

Dock

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hagley":heomi4rx said:
If you win the pipe, you can send it to Mark Tinsky, and he can finish the pipe for you, and remove that excess wood from the bottom. Just a couple minutes on a disc sander, and there you go.

Mike
Mike,

I actually like the plateau bottom.It's really the only unique feature of the pipe. I also like Rick Hacker quite a bit,so we'll just agree to disagree on matters of taste :)

Best,
Dock
:pipe:
 

hagley

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D.J. Perry":nvqls0oh said:
hagley":nvqls0oh said:
If you win the pipe, you can send it to Mark Tinsky, and he can finish the pipe for you, and remove that excess wood from the bottom. Just a couple minutes on a disc sander, and there you go.

Mike
Mike,

I actually like the plateau bottom.It's really the only unique feature of the pipe. I also like Rick Hacker quite a bit,so we'll just agree to disagree on matters of taste :)

Best,
Dock
:pipe:
I actually think that the pipe is kinda neat. It looks to be a very nice piece of wood, but I was just looking at how it would look without that base.

I have seen quite a few Savinelli Autographs with that type of treatment. I owned one myself, and I guess the carver just felt that it was too impressive to cut away.
Mike
 

Dock

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Allright,so I ended up getting it for like $135.00.I honestly knew I'd get it as my maximum bid was more than twice what it finished up at.I was'nt takin' any chances :lol: It's not made by a great maker,the grain is'nt so good and the stem leaves sooo much to be desired but for some odd reason it spoke to me!

Best,
Dock
:pipe:
 

Bob Oakley

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Congrats on your win. It certainly is a different style pipe that you usually see. Not my "cup of tea" but certainly great looking. Hope it smokes great for you.
 

Justpipes

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That really is one cool looking pipe!

Please post a photo of it once you receive it.
 

withthegrain

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I am bumping this thread just to add some info to the community knowledge. There is some confusion regarding the GranHill label. As was previously stated in an earlier post, GranHill was the store brand for a Fargo tobacconist named Lonnie. However, these pipes were actually made by well known carver Michael Kabik (CHP-X, SvenLar). There is some question regarding the existence of some GranHill pipes that were carved by Lonnie himself, but there are certainly high quality freehands done by Kabik under this label.
 
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