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3 Year Journey: Complete Set of Continental X-Series (Pic Heavy)

(64 posts)
  • Started 2 years ago by dave g
  • Latest reply from gloucesterman
  1. danielplainview

    dave g

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    A 3 year treasure hunt is nearly over. I've finally acquired a complete set of Dr. Grabow Continental X-Series.
    12 unique shapes released in 1959. These were mail order coupon pipes only. Not sold in stores. A coupon pipe was only available for sale after a customer collected up to 25 coupons from various tobacco tin/tubs.
    10 of the 12 Continentals I have are smooth finish. I'm still on the hunt to replace the 2 wire carved finishes.

    Ejames, fact check or any other interesting info appreciated

    Many thanks to my friends over at the Grabow forums for helping me track down these seldom seen old briars.

    Make aromatics great again.
    Posted 2 years ago #
  2. didache

    didache

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    My hat off to you, sir! Tracking down an entire series of pipes only sold by mail order/coupon, and all in first class condition. A labour of love methinks! Mike

    "Pipe-smokers spend so much time cleaning, filling and fooling with their pipes, they don't have time to get into mischief." - Bill Vaughan
    Posted 2 years ago #
  3. owen

    owen

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    Wonderful

    Posted 2 years ago #
  4. philobeddoe

    Philo Beddoe

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    Outstanding....congratulations on putting this set together, 58 years after the set was sold, one at a time, you managed to gather the full compliment, well done sir!

    "So it goes." - K.V.
    Posted 2 years ago #
  5. alexnorth

    alexnorth

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    Impressive!! A nice looking set indeed

    Posted 2 years ago #
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    heimedvw

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    Congrats on the wonderful collection!! Very unique shapes like you said

    Posted 2 years ago #
  7. colorduke

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    Very nice looking collection.

    I will give up my pipe when they pry my cold dead fingers off of it!
    Posted 2 years ago #
  8. mothernaturewilleatusallforbreakfast

    mothernature

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    That's a great collection of pipes. Thanks for sharing the pics.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  9. dread

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    Wow! Congrats! That is one impressive collection - those pipes are awesome.

    ". . . I am the master of my fate:
    I am the captain of my soul."
    - INVICTUS
    Posted 2 years ago #
  10. ashdigger

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    That is epic!!! Very, very nice!!!

    Ubi Ignis Est?
    Posted 2 years ago #
  11. ssjones

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    That is fabulous! The shapes and briar on those pipes is amazing, a free coupon pipe, I had not heard of this line.
    I love a three year hunt, particularly one that is victorious, congrats!

    Al

    Posted 2 years ago #
  12. randelli

    randelli

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    That's fantastic! Those pipes are in such good condition too.

    "A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way" - Mark Twain

    KG5QDZ
    Posted 2 years ago #
  13. theosprey247

    theosprey247

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    That's a great looking set

    Posted 2 years ago #
  14. addamsruspipe

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    That is very cool. And the time it must have take to track them all down and get them. Very amazing.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  15. davet

    davet

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    Very impressive indeed

    10 of the 12 Continentals I have are smooth finish. I'm still on the hunt to replace the 2 wire carved finishes.

    Did you forget to mention tracking down the other 10 wire carved finishes
    Very nice collection, well done.

    Posted 2 years ago #
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    dixie

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    Amazing collection! How did that take to pull together? Whats next?

    Posted 2 years ago #
  17. bluegrassbrian

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    All very unique Grabows!
    Damn good job Dave!

    Tobacco's a help because it clears the mind
    But like all your friends it is vilified
    They always say, the right amount's fine
    Posted 2 years ago #
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    dixie

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    Just read the title…answered my own stupid question:) Three years…what persistence! Second question still stands…whats next?

    Posted 2 years ago #
  19. jpmcwjr

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    Wow, Dave, that is epic as already noted. Well done!

    Now, let's see the after pics, when they have been cleaned up and polished......

    .

    .

    .

    .

    .

    .

    A joke. Dave does extra fine work on all his refurbs, and the above is not an exception.....

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 2 years ago #
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    aldecaker

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    Those are exceptionally nice Grabows (of which, I am a big fan in general). The fact that it's a themed collection is even better. Grabow's wire-carved finish, and similar iterations like Stanwell's Brushed series, is far and away my favorite texture on a briar pipe. As far as I know, Grabow did it first, and frankly, I feel they did it best. Good luck on the other Continentals you are after!

    A man who serves his country is a patriot. A man who serves his government is an employee. The two are not always the same thing.
    Posted 2 years ago #
  21. ejames

    ejames

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    Congrats Dave ! I'm glad to see you were finally able to put a 12 piece set together ! The Continentals were however not just available through mail order-- maybe at first when those shapes were put into production they were available only by coupon in the Westbrook,Emperor and Sculptura lines, but they were available in the regular production--non coupon lines such as Viscount,Starfire and Eldorado. They were even made in some lines that-according to the shape and availability charts--they were not available in-- Color Viscount,Silver Duke, Regal and others.
    Over the years Grabow made a lot of pipes that supposedly were not available--according to the charts-- such as saddle bit 81's, Golden Duke 85,Commodore Oom Paul and many other "odd ball" pipes.

    The coupon pipes were given XO shape numbers while the regular production lines (meaning sold in retail stores) were given standard shape numbers. The XO numbers were never stamped on the pipes,but the regular production pipes will sometimes have a stamped shape number.

    Now,you what I'd like to see Dave? 12 piece sets in the Westbrook,Emperor and Sculptura lines. Might not be to hard to find the Westbrooks but the Emperor and especially the Sculptura would be.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  22. peteguy

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    Congrats on your milestone. We are lucky to witness something like this.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  23. snowhill

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    Very nice!

    Posted 2 years ago #
  24. brian64

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    Wow...that is really something Dave. Congrats on putting that collection together...and preserving a piece of pipe history.

    “Bipartisan usually means some larger-than-usual deception is being carried out.” – George Carlin
    Posted 2 years ago #
  25. danielplainview

    dave g

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    Thanks fellas. I restored all 12 of these as I brought them into the fold. I used a small Redbull can to reshape several of the damaged rims. Perfect fit for the rounded rims. I figured showing resto pics of all 12 might be a bit much.

    @Ed
    Thanks for the update Ed. I tried finding the back story of the Continental on DGCF without luck. You're right, a set of Sculputra Continentals would be an epic collection. I believe Tom is the only person who has an Emperor #25. They weren't officially made. 4 of these in my set are Emperor's.

    Someone asked what's next?

    I'm hunting down all 6 shapes of the LHS Special Make. I just posted my latest addition in the LHS show off thread. I have 2 of the 6 now.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  26. fnord

    fnord

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    I love collections like this!

    But why 1959, Dave?

    The pipes are stunning.

    Fnord

    It ain't the way I wanted it! I can handle things! I'm smart! Not like everybody says - like dumb - I'm smart and I want respect!
    Fredo Corleone
    Posted 2 years ago #
  27. sablebrush52

    sablebrush52

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    That is a stunning collection and they look terrific. Congratulations on pulling together this first rate collection.

    It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt. - Mark Twain

    It is pointless to argue with a fanatic since a dim bulb can't be converted into a searchlight. - Jesse Silver
    Posted 2 years ago #
  28. benpipesmoking

    benpipesmoking

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    How well do Grabow's smoke?

    Posted 2 years ago #
  29. jvnshr

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    What a great collection!

    Javan
    Posted 2 years ago #
  30. davet

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    How well do Grabow's smoke?

    They've been around for about 85 years, must be doing something right
    All of mine smoke great, never had a problem. I can't speak for recent production, I don't have any new ones they're all estates.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  31. mso489

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    I've only heard of these pipes available by mail order only. I think they still offer these from time to time, but you can't get them unless you visit the workshop or are in touch with someone there. It's sort of like the mythical white buffalo. You have to go on a spirit quest and fast for ten days before you get to see the vision of these pipes. But seriously, this is an amazing feat to corner a set like this and put them in restored condition. I'd love to get just one new from the factory, to say I'd done it. These have incredible shapes and finishes, the ultra Dr. Grabows. Really something.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  32. ophiuchus

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    The pipe collection is beautiful; it's your obviously tenacious feats of effort I find impressive.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  33. dmcmtk

    dmcmtk

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    I thought this thread was going to be about tires... Nice looking pipes Dave.

    Dave
    Duke Street Irregular
    Posted 2 years ago #
  34. clickklick

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    Spectacular!

    Hobbyist Pipemaker - Carmette Pipes
    Posted 2 years ago #
  35. fitzy

    fitzy

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    wow just fantastic. congrats!

    "These are ghosts that are more at home in a girdle-filled drawer than one of my pipes." Quote by Neil Archer Roan on lakeland ghosts
    Posted 2 years ago #
  36. shaintiques

    shaintiques

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    Very cool. I recently bought a Grabow that struck my fancy. Tomato shape.

    I know what I need, smoke, I can't recall the last time I tasted it....Gandalf in the mines of Moria.

    "we shall have to share pipes, as good friends must at a pinch'....'I keep a treasure or two near my skin, as precious as rings to me. Here's one: my old wooden pipe. And here's another an unused one...He held up a small pipe with a wide flattened bowl, and handed it to Gimli. 'Does that settle the score between us', said Merry. 'Most noble hobbit, it leaves me deep in your debt."
    Posted 2 years ago #
  37. toobfreak

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    Dave, late to the thread but I have to tell you those are some fascinating pipes! I had no idea the Doctor ever made these styles! Congrats on getting them all---- I would love to see a picture of those wire carved styles.

    To Master Po: Is it not being able to see that makes you tire of life?
    Master Po: No! It is being able to hear!
    Posted 2 years ago #
  38. gloucesterman

    gloucesterman

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    Well done my friend. That is quite an accomplishment to have found and restored a complete set. Dutch

    Posted 2 years ago #
  39. jkrug

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    That's an outstanding collection that was well worth the effort to assemble. Very nice indeed!!

    Posted 2 years ago #
  40. tuold

    tuold

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    Bravo and well done, sir!

    The pipe is an instrument of civilization.
    Posted 2 years ago #
  41. deleon

    deleon

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    Damn! That's awesome!

    Posted 2 years ago #
  42. danielplainview

    dave g

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    Update

    I hunted down the last two smooth finish Continentals to replace the two wire carved shapes. Completing the original goal of having all 12 Continentals in a smooth finish. The cherry on top: a factory Grabow wall display. My guy at the local B&M hooked me up.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  43. philobeddoe

    Philo Beddoe

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    Very cool Dave, congratulations.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  44. cosmicbobo

    David

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    The kind of "woodie" I like to get at my age

    Be that as it may, it probably never was...
    Posted 1 year ago #
  45. fishnbanjo

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    While three years can seem like a long while when trying to put something like this together in the scheme of things it truly isn't especially when you'll be rewarded with owning them for many years to come, congratulations.
    banjo

    Posted 1 year ago #
  46. jefff

    jefff

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    Just incredible!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  47. davet

    davet

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    Awesome, now how about the full set of wire carved ?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  48. lasttango

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    I like that X03 #20 a lot...

    A man that hoards up riches and enjoys them not, is like an ass that carries gold and eats thistles.
    -Richard Burton
    Posted 1 year ago #
  49. nevadablue

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    Congratulations on the fine collection.

    What is the next goal?

    ---
    Ken
    Posted 1 year ago #
  50. metalheadycigarguy

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    Very cool! Impressive collection. What are you going to do now that the hunt is over. They say the thrill is in the hunt and not the catch, so is it?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  51. tuold

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    Somewhere in the multiverse, ejames is smiling. So am I! Well done!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  52. scrooge

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    Out Standing finishing touch. What's Next?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  53. coldsmoke

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    I'm impressed!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  54. ssjones

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    Very cool - we shall call you "King of The Continentals"!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  55. clickklick

    clickklick

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    I miss ejames!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  56. danielplainview

    dave g

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    What's next? 12 Continental's in a blasted finish. I already have a few. Also hunting down all 6 shapes of LHS Special Makes.
    Yes, I really miss Ed too. He helped me get a couple of these Continental's posted above.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  57. skaukatt

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    That is an outstanding collection, great job, those are really beautiful pipes. Dr. Grabow, I would have never thought. Many of those wonderful shapes remind me of old Stanwell's, Kriswill's and Dan Pipes.

    I would love to know the back story on who carved these for Grabow. I presume that they were not carved by Grabow, but I could be wrong, would not be the first time!

    Beautiful collection and end to quest, which is always rewarding!

    Enjoy,
    Lou

    Posted 1 year ago #
  58. danielplainview

    dave g

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    @ Lou

    Continental's were made start to finish right at the Grabow factory.

    And all sandblasted Grabow's ever made was the work of one man. They made blasted pipes for about 20 years give or take until he retired. Going from memory here. I'll look up the article and try to post it soon.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  59. User has not uploaded an avatar

    surenot

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    I thought this was going to be about tires. I am such a newb. lol

    Posted 1 year ago #
  60. danielplainview

    dave g

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    Here's the article about sandblasted Grabow's.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  61. cwarmouth

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    I'm obviously very late coming to this thread but I just have to chime in and say that this is amazing. What a feat and what a collection. Congrats.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  62. didimauw

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    Are these just for collecting? Or do you smoke them?

    "I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."
    Posted 1 year ago #
  63. danielplainview

    dave g

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    Thanks guys.

    Yes sir, I smoke them. The old Ajustomatic’s are great burners.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  64. gloucesterman

    gloucesterman

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    Well done my friend. Truly impressive. Assembling the collection is difficult enough but the quality of the restorations makes it exceptional. Dutch

    Posted 1 year ago #

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