I bought an Ashton Rhodesian in that finish/stem treatment earlier this summer for my 50th and it is one of my favorite pipes. Mine is a XX, which is a very useful size. What size is that billiard? I love the craggy top. I looked at that pipe several times. Mine is a '98 and had what seems typical for that era drilling issues. It would not pass a cleaner either. Once fixed with a needle file, it smokes much better. I really like these oil treated briar pipes, they just have a particular way of smoking (also have a Ferndown and Dunhill that were treated).
Let us know how she smokes!