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Monday, February 23, 2009

A Nice Deal

Here's a nice deal for someone - an unsmoked Ligne Bretagne bulldog sandblast on ebay. I always wonder about pipes like this... Why was it unsmoked? What is the story behind it? Did the original buyer suddenly go off bulldogs after purchase? I've never bought a pipe unless I intended to smoke it, usually within minutes of purchase, so the "aftermarket" in unsmoked pipes will probably always puzzle me. In any event, I remember this particular pipe and it is a very nice blast, and should certainly be a good deal for whoever picks it up!

Fans of deep sandblasts with deeper pockets, however, should check out this monster - a Talbert Briar poker from 2000. I remember that one very well indeed - In fact, it's one of those pipes I've made that I would have loved to keep for myself. In the late 90's, I got hold of a stock of some extremely old Algerian briar in long-shanked block sizes, perfect for pipes like this, and the material not only smoked well but produced excellent sandblasts. It required hardly any effort to get a good blast, and extra attention paid dividends in a radically craggy surface. Like most of the Algerian briar I've seen, the grain was hardly ever in what's considered "proper" orientations (stacked rings, for instance), but it had a randomness and sheer craziness that I enjoyed very much.

And FWIW, I have no affiliation with either auction nor the sellers, I just thought they were both good bargains worth mentioning here since orders have kept me so busy that I've hardly had any time to make pipes for the website, lately.


  1. Hello Trever,
    The unsmoked Ligne Bretagne on eBay, it's mine... ;)
    You're right when you wrote that it's a splendid example of fabulous sandblasting. A lovely pipe, in all regards.
    So why I never smoked it? Well... I always have a couple (let's say a couple, but it's more true to say a dozen...) of unsmoked pipes waiting somewhere for the "good day". And sometimes, this day never come. I really don't know why.
    Some of those pipes are still in a drawer since years, and sometimes I have a look on them. A look with a question: do I shall smoke it one of those days?
    Recently, I answer by the negative concerning this nice LB. Why? Simply because of the horn stem. And then I decide to sell it, because it's too sad to see a nice thing like that have, as life, only a drawer's one...
    But I have another LB. I smoked it frequently and it's not for sale... ;)
    Best regards,
    Cyl ("cilth" on eBay)

  2. Well, at least Rob has learned how to spell your name correctly! Anyway, I have a few of those Algerian wonders from a few years back. They are all tactile tour de forces (so much for Jeff using French words). And they smoke real gud, too!

  3. Just a quick note to complete the story of the unsmoked small sandblast bulldog. At the end of the auction on eBay the pipe was promptly sent by Cilth to its new owner in Bangkok. As expected it smoked very well from the very first time. It now joins a small collection of Talbert pipes in Siam, including the appropriately named morta pipe Betafish (Siamese Fighting Fish) which, to me, is still the most beautiful pipe I've ever seen.