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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Very Early Talbert

Here's another bit of Talbert Pipes history. I made this pipe as a special request for a lawyer in Hawaii, who contacted me immediately after I won the P&T carving contest back in '98. He wanted to get a pipe from me for a particular reason - he knew Paul Perri, the pipemaker who had helped me get started, and wanted a sample of work from his student! This was in many ways one of my earliest "real" pipes, by which I mean that it was both creative and practical. The reason I opted to post the picture, however, was just to point out the stem, which is all one piece. Now, any sane pipemaker today would drill the shank extension apart from the twisted stem section, then fix them together once all the shaping of the spiral stem was done, but I cut the whole thing from one section of rod stock, without turning (I did not have a lathe at that time). I remember it being quite a bit of work to get the shank extension section properly round and flat across the face, while carving the spiral section without making any gouges in the flat extension face. Beautiful piece of wood, though, colored with a light staining strained from dark tobacco leaves.