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Leather wrapped pipes?

Discussion in 'Pipes' started by Hudson, Mar 4, 2012.

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  1. Hudson

    Hudson Member

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    I've noticed a number of leather wrapped pipes on the estate market and wondered what true pipe aficionados (you guys) think of them? Obviously there's no briar grain to appreciate but they do have some visual appeal. Is there some weird pipe protocol involved here, like never smoke them before 5 PM or after Labor Day or only on yachts? I was thinking maybe if I could find one that matched my shoes . . . . Any opinions or anecdotes?
     
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  2. Rewster66

    Rewster66 Active Member

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    I've often wondered about them too.:confused:
     
  3. woody

    woody Admin Admin

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    Seems to me that the leather would hold the heat in. At the same time it would insulate the bowl so it wouldn't feel as hot to your hand. If you can find one that matches your shoes, why not give it a try... :puffy:
     
  4. TRAVIS

    TRAVIS Member

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    i have a few old African Meerschaum ones they are estates and i think the late owner smoked cigarette tobacco out of them about 20 bowls a day for 50 years i cant rid the demons enough to get a good smoke out of them. They look great though.
     
  5. Hawkwood

    Hawkwood Member

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    Maybe it was a different way to hide putty? All I can think is it was some kind of fashion fad in the 60's - 70's. Most seem to be french in origin [longchamp]. There's a famous photo of Elvis with one.
     
  6. Kiowapipe

    Kiowapipe Active Member

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    :xd:
    I'm not a fan of them myself. I think they look sort of... well... gross. Just my personal taste, of course. I don't think I've seen a new leather wrapped pipe in a long time. I suppose it was often used as an alternative to rustication as a way to salvage F'd up blocks.
     
  7. jhe888

    jhe888 Member

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    It was a fashion in the '70s, and maybe earlier, too. I don't care for them.

    While they could salvage bad blocks of briar, you then have the extra cost of covering them, so I am guessing it was more for the look than for saving mediocre briar.

    White ones only in the summer, with your linen suit!
     
  8. dmkerr

    dmkerr PG- free since '83! Moderator

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    I took the leather wrap off a couple of them years ago. The briar underneath was atrocious. First time I ever saw a hole that the putty is used to fill in. The hole was so broad that I guess puttying it would have looked really terrible.

    Limited experience but enough to cause me to avoid them.
     
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  9. Scottly

    Scottly Member

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    Savinelli used to make one called Grand Prix, they now sell one called the Cricket. I really like the look of a leather wrapped pipe although I have never owned one--yet. True they say the wood under the wrap is usually not very pretty but who cares.
     
  10. Hudson

    Hudson Member

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    Yeah, I guess the real truth is in the smoking. I think they appeal to me due to the vintage. I could see one on the set of Mad Men and I'll bet Hef had one in the day.

    But they don't seem real popular; they don't get bid up very high. Might be a way to lower the cost of collecting, i.e. collect pipes no one else wants. Could probably have a whole museum of unwanted pipes. I think I hear opportunity knocking.

    Thanks for weighing in, folks.
     
  11. ted

    ted Member

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    In my world of Mastercraft, there was only 1 supplier for Leather covered.. Mario Gasparini from Varese, Italy. His was "just common".
    Longchamps was next, and theirs were quite good. MOF... I have a "skinned" Longchamp bent that is almost perfect, although it has no grain.
    After Longchamps, others got into the "leather" business, but I suspect Gasparini was still doing the covering..

    Much like Grabow painting Viscount's and Dukes... Good quality bowl, no patches, no grain.. That is usually a leather covered... and a nickle.......ted
     
  12. Arkie

    Arkie Active Member

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    I still have the one I bought in the 70's but I retired it a few months ago. It's black leather coverd billiard with a saddle bit. It's an excellent smoker and I've gotten fond of it through the years.
     
  13. daveinlax

    daveinlax Member

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    A '69 LB from the collection.:confused:
    [​IMG]
     
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  14. TRAVIS

    TRAVIS Member

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    I've got 4 or 5 leather covered Kiko's from the 1960's, meer lined as well. I wouldn't buy one new i don't think but i grab em if there realy cheap on the bay.
     
  15. Arkie

    Arkie Active Member

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    Mine is identical except it has a saddle bit.
     
  16. Johnny Dingo

    Johnny Dingo Writer of wrongs

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    If it's good enough for The King, it's good enough for me.
     
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  17. cobbsmoker

    cobbsmoker Active Member

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    Nice pipe Dave!
     
  18. LifeOfRiley

    LifeOfRiley Active Member

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    I bought one off the 'bay a couple of months ago which I cleaned, smoked once, and retired, but it was a real beater. Easily the nastiest estate pipe I've bought. I'll probably peel off the leather and use it for Dremel rustication practice in the future
     
  19. KevinP

    KevinP Member

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    Not what you're asking of course, but CAO makes/used to make suede-covered gourd calabashes I have one and it's pretty nice. Don't know what the gourd would look like uncovered but also don't care (whereas I would if it was briar).
     
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