Pipes Magazine » Pipe Talk » British Pipes

Search Forums  
   
Tags:  No tags yet. 

A Forgotten Brand= Willmer

(17 posts)
  • Started 3 years ago by cigrmaster
  • Latest reply from renfield
  1. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,704

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I was wondering if any of you heard of this company and if you have any of their pipes? I have owned 2 and sold one, and I regret selling it but it went to a friend. In terms of briar, some of the best I have ever owned. I could puff like a madman and it barely got warm. Tobacco tasted great in them. I owned two AAA Straighht Grains( still have the one), which was their top of the line when they were made.

    I see many of the lower models like AA on ebay and sometimes the on line estate dealers. I do see AAA's once in a while and they normally go for short money compared to other brands like dunhill and others. Both of mine smoke better than any dunhill I owned.

    Harris
    Posted 3 years ago #
  2. tbradsim1

    tbradsim1

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jan 2012
    Posts: 7,727

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Harris I got about 8 , yes they are unsung wonders, just like the Savorys they are a Big Bang for the $.

    The Old Cajun
    Posted 3 years ago #
  3. huntertrw

    huntertrw

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jul 2014
    Posts: 4,005

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Forgotten by whom? I know them well and have one of their pipes, a Bel Air, in my collection. It was was designed to copy the Merchant Service Special which was favored by Mr. Crosby. The Bel Air is a good smoker, and its fit and finish is as good as that of any other pipe I own. Further, its briar features beautiful flame-grain.

    In his book titled "Rare Smoke - The Ultimate Guide to Pipe Collecting" Richard Carleton Hacker had this to say about Willmer, "Although this London firm makes some pipes under its own name for both Great Britain and the U.S., it is primarily known for the vast number of private label pipes it produces for a variety of pipe companies."

    Love Me, Love My Pipe
    Posted 3 years ago #
  4. gtclark

    gtclark

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Oct 2013
    Posts: 538

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Well I've never heard of them...we should probably close the thread before the eBay market goes to heck...

    Posted 3 years ago #
  5. huntertrw

    huntertrw

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jul 2014
    Posts: 4,005

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Here's a link (Willmer) to their entry on pipedia.com.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  6. keith929

    keith929

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Nov 2010
    Posts: 783

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I had one but lost it when a woman I was seeing in Washington,DC ejected it and my other belongings from a third story window.

    I really miss that pipe.

    A smart man learns from the mistakes of others.
    A wise man learns from his own.
    ---Anonymous
    Posted 3 years ago #
  7. bentbob

    bentbob

    Member
    Joined: May 2015
    Posts: 184

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I have two Willmer's. Both are Mayfair bents. One with a silver band the other without.

    They are excellent pipes.

    The straight grains go for quite a bit but there are bargains to be had. A friend got a beautiful half bent sandblast with a cumberland stem for next to nothing a year or so ago.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  8. georged

    georged

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2013
    Posts: 2,586

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    The first high quality pipe I ever bought was a Willmer. $70 in 1977, if my rememberer is working right, which was quite a project for me to put together at the time. (About $280 in today's money)

    I've smoked the absolute crap out of it ever since. Definitely a Deserted Island piece.

    Willmer's standards took a dive in the mid 1980's, though. Less refined shapes, inconsistent grading, & chunky, garish stems.

    Dogs live such short lives... and spend most it waiting for us to come home
    Posted 3 years ago #
  9. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,704

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I bought both of mine from Mike aat Briar Blues, the most I paid was 160.00 for the one I still own. I still think I got a real good deal.

    Bradley, why does it not surprise me that you have 8 of them, I am coming to your funeral and telling your wife I will give her 100.00 for all those 50.00 pipes you own.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  10. doctorbob

    doctorbob

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2014
    Posts: 588

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    My Willmer AAA Straight Grain, that served as my introduction to quality British briar (picture is from Nathan Mattia, who sold it to me).

    Excellent pipe with outstanding fit and finish.

    Bob

    Posted 3 years ago #
  11. tbradsim1

    tbradsim1

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jan 2012
    Posts: 7,727

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    . I have 10, reached in large cabinet and grabbed these 3, one on left is a Special, middle is AAA, right one is just labeled Willmer. Most of the others are AA, or AAAA.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  12. metalheadycigarguy

    metalheadycigarguy

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Apr 2012
    Posts: 2,667

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I recently learned about this company and their pipes and I've heard that back in the day they were compared to Dunhill's. Sounds like they made real quality pipe.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  13. renfield

    renfield

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Oct 2011
    Posts: 528

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I have 12, mostly the higher grades, and recently finally added a Bel Air Bing shape to the stable. Even the pipes on the cheaper end of their range smoke delightfully, equal to or better than any of the Dunhills I've owned. I may just be lucky but I've never had a Willmer that smoked poorly. I have a couple which are severely cosmetically challenged but I'll never part with them as they're as close to a holy grail pipe as I expect to get. I'm guessing their previous owners were of the same opinion as they came to me very well used.

    Up until a year or so ago Willmers could be often had on the cheap but the great deals have gotten tougher to find.

    Frequently featuring a chunky style all their own, often with odd looking but perfectly placed indentations to facilitate holding them, it's obvious that Willmer meant their pipes to be smoked, not just collected.

    Unfortunately towards the end of their run the quality of their pipes became quite spotty so it pays to be aware when considering a purchase.

    Ren

    Posted 3 years ago #
  14. sallow

    sallow

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2013
    Posts: 1,177

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I have a Willmer lightweight. It is not a high grade, but I love this pipe, especially the shape of the stem.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  15. disinformatique

    The Pipe Monk

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2014
    Posts: 1,704

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Willmer were really high grade pipes. I have a few in restoration with Ric Farrah at Briaville. Perfect grain and perfect smokers.

    Chris

    Albert Einstein was once quoted as saying, “I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgment in all human affairs.” One of the reasons behind this statement is that pipe smoking is meant to be a slow leisurely activity. It takes patience to smoke a pipe. Unlike cigarettes and cigars, there is a certain amount of technique to smoking a pipe. Where cigars and cigarettes can just be picked up, lit and puffed on, pipes require the development of a technique in order to get the best smoking experience.
    Posted 3 years ago #
  16. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 13,704

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    renfield, 12 Willmers is quite the collection. I found that Dunhill's could not match a Willmer when it came to smoking properties.

    Bradly, nice looking pipes, love that straight grain.

    Swallow and doc, both nice pipes.
    Doc, that angel hair grain on your AAA is impressive.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  17. renfield

    renfield

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Oct 2011
    Posts: 528

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I completely agree, Willmers are better smokers than Dunnies, at least the ones I've had.
    12 is more than I need and yet ...
    I have one in unsmoked condition. It's not an especially nice piece of briar but I wonder how many unsmoked Willmers there are still around and keep putting it back on the rack and smoke one of its mates. I doubt it's worth much to a serious collector but I'd hate to be the guy to sully the last unsmoked Willmer on the planet.

    Ren

    Posted 3 years ago #

Reply

You must log in to post.

 

 

    Back To Top  | Back to Forum Home Page

   Members Online Now
   ashdigger, frankrem, donjgiles, npod, winton, michiganlover, folanator