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Huge Stone AKA "Huke's" Pipe, We'll See How It Turns Out...

(21 posts)
  • Started 5 years ago by layinpipe
  • Latest reply from metarzan
  1. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    Good afternoon Gentlemen (and Ladies),

    Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and for those that attended, had a wonderful time at the Chicago Pipe Show. So this seller, "benandci", on Ebay that was recently discussed in a thread on here had a pipe up this weekend that caught my eye. As usual, i did my research and saw that these pipes, labeled "H.S. Studio" and being marked as "Hand Made" in China i guess, and could not find a damn thing on the pipe maker/company. Pulver's Briar in CA was the ONLY hit I got on google no matter what variation i tried to make with the pipe maker's name, and trust me i tried about 20 different variations. Pulver's had 6 or 7 for sale on the site but no real in depth information about the company/shaper or any website links to them. Therefore, i emailed them and asked if they could provide me with some more information regarding where they get them and what they thought about the quality of the pipes, since they sell them on their website. I am currently waiting on a reply there. After I won the auction, I emailed the seller and asked for similar information regarding the said maker/shaper and said i could not find anything about them online. Still waiting there as well. The shipping so far is great and i got an email Sunday morning saying it was shipped with a tracking number (obviously wouldn't go out until Monday). So at least i know there seems to be someone reliable and readily available on the other side, should i have issues or concerns.

    To be honest, with the minimal investment i made, i'm not too worried if the pipe turns out to be a dud. Obviously i do not want this to be the case, but i loved the shape, curves and blast of the pipe and figured that the price was worth the risk and if someone outbid my max, oh well. I am very curious to see how the pipe looks and smokes, and rest assured i will let everyone know with a review once i test her out and break her in with a few bowls. Another curious thing about the listing i just remembered was the fact that they list the pipe as being made by "Huke", and say that he is a sculptor that has made well known pieces that are displayed in Hong Kong and Japan. After googling the hell out of this "Huke" character, all i found was an anime artist's nickname and another Japanese artist whose portfolio did not include the images shown in the Ebay listing. I'll post a link so y'all can check the original listing out for reference.

    I wanted to create a post to share my experience so others can either purchase with peace of mind and more of a trust in the seller (if you have not bought from him before and have no experience with the seller), or you can use it as an example to avoid the seller's listing in the future (at my expense, lol).

    Anyone actually have any experience with this seller or have any of you guys bought from him before? Anybody know anything about these "H.S. Studio" pipes or this "Huke" character? I am not saying the seller is being shady or mislabeling his listings, i just cannot find anything that further explains the product and where it came from. I could just be searching for the wrong thing and using incorrect key words on google, but i swear i have tried just about everything. Hopefully, a response from Pulver's Briar or the seller can help to put my mind at ease, but either way it will not fully rest until i have the pipe in my hand and get a chance to smoke it. I made the purchase and am fully prepared to accept the ramifications, whether positive or negative.

    Thanks for reading the lengthy post, y'all!

    Link to original Ebay listing:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/HUKEs-pipe-unsmoked-/221420872003?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEWNX%3AIT&_trksid=p2047675.l2557&nma=true&si=BnGAodRB096TX1Obq3HiWAtmJpA%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc

    Pics from listing below:

    Posted 5 years ago #
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    davidintexas

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    Beautiful pipe. I hope it turns out to be the real deal for you

    Posted 5 years ago #
  3. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    Thanks David, i hope so to. I am equal parts nervous/ready to be disappointed and excited/ready to be pleasantly surprised. If it proves to be the former, at least there will be a warning/example for others here to heed before deciding to pull the trigger and take a chance.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  4. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    Interesting pipe. I really want more information about these Chinese and Japanese makers. It is also interesting that the stamps are partially in English, revealing that this was intended specifically for the English speaking market.

    It is also not surprising that you weren't able to get any information on an Asian artists through Google. Because most Asian artisans and others famous in their own countries are mostly written about in their own language, which doesn't translate well in the search engines.

    But, I do want to know more about this and other Asian pipe makers. We need a good pipe writer to head out and do for these Asian artisans what Rick Newcombe did for the Danish artisans.

    Michael
    Posted 5 years ago #
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    Anonymous

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    Best of luck. I'm not a fan of the seller, who has a dubious reputation. It looks like there are a couple flaws/cracks in the last picture.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  6. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    Hey guys, just went back and re-read both the recent threads regarding this seller and his "fakes". I knew about his sketchy reputation beforehand with fakes, but even in the other threads it was said numerous times that the pipes still looked like decent quality, so i decided on a maximum price and said screw it and bid. At least with this one, there was no "faking" of any pipe maker and i obviously knew that. Hell, maybe the guy carving all those fakes has gone legit and improved his game, adopting a legit operation and using his own name/company name. Regardless, i really liked the look and texture of the pipe in the pictures. I don't think either of the noted areas are cracks, especially the one at the top lefthand side of the bowl. I think they are folds/deeper impressions in the blasting. As for the other one, like i said it doesn't look like a crack to me but we shall see, i'm certainly no expert and in this case, meerly an optimist, lol. Worst case scenario, granted the pipe gets to my doorstep safe and sound, i have a crappy smoking cracked pipe and i'm out $60. Best case scenario, i get what i saw in the pictures and they are true to what they reveal, a pretty good looking $60 pipe. If she smokes well, even better, a $60 well spent. Either way, it will be a lesson that all of us on here can learn from and look to for guidance when dealing or staying far away from this seller in the future. Any pipe smoker who can use the google search engine will also benefit as well, if he/she is smart enough to do a Google search on the ebay seller's name.

    Cosmic, very good point on the google search and language barrier there, i hadn't really thought too hard about that. Also, good point on the English language markings. My question is, if the markings are in English and they are supposedly selling the pipes in the U.S. out of Phoenix to an American market, wouldn't the pipe maker maybe just naturally put the markings in English? It looks like it is all English, save for what looks like the pipe makers fully written out signature (H.S.), which still appears to be in English.

    I just want it to look as good as it does in the pictures when i get it in my hands and for it to smoke well. I don't really care who made the pipe and that is certainly not why i decided to bid in the first place, lol. I'm looking at it as a win win situation.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  7. kanaka95

    kanaka95

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    That pipes got a nice but unique shape.Great score to me.I may have missed it but is it made from briar.If it is it will probably be a great pipe.Heck i would have done the same thing if i was in the situation you were.Hopefully you can smoke the woods of that thing.Let us know how it turns out to be.

    The constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people,it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government-less it come to dominate our likes and interest.God bless america.(patrick henry)
    Posted 5 years ago #
  8. misterlowercase

    misterlowercase

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    For that price, you won't be burned bad anyway, and it might just even turn out to be a great smoker, as we all hope it will, please don't forget to post the update.

    I do find it odd however, that given this sellers past practices, that "copycat" styles keep coming out from him, I think perhaps after the big snafu maybe he just retooled and did the old name-change trick, and the name itself is very close to PS Studio...
    http://www.neatpipes.com/Artigiano/ps-studio/&id=25

    The pipe you purchased is in the style of Anne Julie, it's one of her signature styles, no one else makes a pipe like that except for her.

    http://www.smokingpipes.com/pipes/estate/denmark/moreinfo.cfm?Product_ID=67735

    All the famous Danes are bigtime in China.

    It takes a pipemaker quite a while to develop a signature style, for the most part, it's something that is hard-won with experience and effort, the question would be, does her distinct style constitute intellectual property?

    Is making a pipe in her signature style a form of theft, even if it's not an outright fake with false stamping?

    At least they didn't go that far,
    sometimes her nomenclature is a generic stamping,
    and sometimes it's an actual signature,

    I'm glad that line wasn't crossed.

    So in essence, all is well.

    I guess?

    We're in wet waters of the world wide web and it's like the wild west, control of creative content is a problem that artists and writers et alia etc. have always faced, but now it's nuclear because everything is happening so fast and in shadowy unknown quarters of the ephemeral ghostvoid...

    ...who knows?

    All I know is that I don't know nuthin'.

    The pipe is a clear "style swipe", but was it done in malice?
    No, I don't think so, it doesn't seem to be made to deceive.

    Does it take bread off Anne Julie's table?
    I doubt it, but it is somewhat disrespectful.

    Given the prices that Julie's pipes sell for, it's only natural that there'd be an "aspirational market" for cheaper versions of the pipes for those who don't want to spend so much money, a market that seems especially exacerbated in China, so there's folks there willing to fill the hole and supply whatever goods are in demand...my question is, why market them overseas? Wouldn't the Chinese market eat 'em all up, considering how many super-high grades are being sold there/

    The Chinese word for smoking pipe is
    烟斗

    Type in
    烟斗 julie
    and you'll get alot of hits...

    ...but
    烟斗 HS Studio
    barely any at all, maybe 1 or 2 hits,
    they must be not made for the domestic market I'd reckon.

    The somewhat affiliated to this particular seller Silver Castle line gets alotta hits though.

    It's easier just to do image searches, difficult to find anything otherwise, unless you can read Chinese.

    An interesting discussion:
    http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=zh-CN&u=http://bbs.pipevillage.org/archiver/tid-24586.html&prev=/search%3Fq%3D%25E7%2583%259F%25E6%2596%2597%2Bfake%26biw%3D1366%26bih%3D622

    And short quote from the Ebay Fake Fight thread, many of these pipe villagers seem to point to Taobao as a possible suspect culprit?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taobao

    But for a private remind knowingly false persuasion still hanging in the stores were selling Comments libraries removed.

    I hope you saw Taobao stores are selling fake fighting reminder to tell people, if not listen to advice please link stick out. Village will fight its blacklist, positive atmosphere.

    Like this one: victory: the old bucket were his own profound insight Road see injustice his help when the hand on hand, this is the purification of the pipe industry to protect this niche hobby right way.

    Just saw a treasure in a bucket shop online Shanghai rampant fakes ah, only a few high-end second-hand fighting also tricky point, I really do not understand the store will earn this money peace of mind thing. . . . .

    Possible examples?

    It seems Anne Julie pipes are all over the place, are they all real?

    http://s8.taobao.com/search?q=anne+julie+%D1%CC%B6%B7&pid=mm_29085541_0_0&sort=sale-desc

    http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a230r.1.0.0.LI3ceY&id=21194719026

    http://tigerpipe.taobao.com/category-423068030.htm?search=y&parentCatId=423068029&parentCatName=%B5%A4%C2%F3%B4%F3%CA%A6%D7%F7%C6%B7&catName=%B5%A4%C2%F3Anne+Julie

    http://weitao.taobao.com/tzh/feed/feedDetailDisplay.htm?feedId=19752378&wsnsUid=2023728188

    This mystery may just remain a mystery.


    "The Treachery of Images displays Magritte’s attempt to have the viewer question their reality. The painting portrays a large single pipe, and at the bottom of the painting, in French, states “This is not a pipe.” Magritte’s point is simple: the painting is not a pipe; it is an Image of a pipe. An anecdotal story is that when Magritte was asked if the painting was a pipe, he replied that of course it is not a pipe, and suggested that they try to stuff it with tobacco. "

    I don't know.

    All I can say is that I hope it turns out to be a winner and please remember to post the review.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  9. metarzan

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    The texture, lines and angles remind me of a Brazil nut. Hope she's a good smoker. I like!

    Posted 5 years ago #
  10. misterlowercase

    misterlowercase

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    Something that completely escaped me earlier was the moniker Huge Stone,
    I guess it is the HS part of Studio?

    Duh me.

    I must admit frankly, I kinda laughed when I saw that brand pop up from that seller because I recognized the same hand in action and I thought, gee that name sure fits, the guys got huge stones for keeping up the copycat act after being so prominently called out on it, even contacted by Eltang's lawyer I think?

    So now I guess it's more of a "tribute" type thing, swiping famous styles but keeping legit by not making the fake stamps, which is good, and maybe even it's all on the up 'n up, I dunno, I remember Pulvers got sorta involved in the big snafu so I'd be interested to hear what he sez about HS Studio, and it's a good sign I reckon that he's got 'em up on offer at his site, gives a little more faith...

    ...so maybe it's a new leaf, but why still bite lyrics so hard?

    Obviously the carver or carvers has got talent, it seems weird to me they continue on with the high-end biting, but I suppose there is a niche market for it, they are damn fine lookin' pipes I must admit.

    After doing a
    烟斗 "huge stone"
    image search,
    got bingo bongo hits,
    including a few that greatly resemble your pipe...
    https://www.google.com/search?q=%E7%83%9F%E6%96%97+%22huge+stone%22&client=firefox-a&hs=sfs&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&channel=fflb&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=a1poU-qYM4eT8gHMhYGQBg&ved=0CAYQ_AUoAQ&biw=1366&bih=622#imgdii=_

    Interesting stuff indeed,
    although when you click the images it tosses you off into some weird twitter feed?

    This man might just be the carver?

    Be sure to update with Pulvers response!

    Now you've dragged me into the mystery!

    Maybe I'll end up getting a Huge Stone too, I've been lookin' at 'em,
    if your review report is good, I gotta say they are a super deal for a cool shaped pipe.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  11. novicemaker

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    while it seems sketchy, if the thought behind it was something like providing pipes that looked good and for a better price then it would be cool in my book. If you had access to the supplies for a cheaper cost and could make them in a short amount of time then why not provide a nice styled pipe for slightly above cost.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  12. novicemaker

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    I have some good idea designs but not very artistic when compared to some of the pipes i have seen.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  13. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    MISTERLOWERCASE, (see what I did there, lol) thanks a TON for all the info you dug up! Like I said from the get go, I simply stumbled upon this pipe on ebay and really dug the shape and finish on it. I was aware of the seller's history based on the research I did. I didn't care who made it and made sure that it was not a counterfeit pipe, which it obviously is not by the stampings. For the money I paid, I was willing to take a gamble and see what happened. I agree, there are some good looking "HS Studio" pipes listed by the seller and this one just sort of spoke to me. If it goes south, I'll do what I can to let the community know about and make sure no one else wastes their money on them, or at least warn them of my experience. If it turns out to be a great pipe, I hope others can get a similar deal and score a great pipe at a great price.

    I emailed Marty Pulver and he responded today:
    "Corey;
         Your questions are both good and important and at this point, I can't answer them
    satisfactorily.  I am going to pull one of them (not on the site...a bamboo-shanked piece)
    and smoke it and be able to tell you more.
        From what I can see, they are not particularly refined, but they still look nice...and
    appear to be a very good value.  I feel like I'll know more after I put one of them through
    the paces.
         Thanks for the inquiry and for looking at the site.  
    Best,

    Marty"

    I responded with this:
    "Hey Marty,

    Thanks for the response. I am a member and post on the pipes magazine website forums and was just rereading a couple threads about the pipes. A couple of the members were posting about previous issues with this seller on ebay, benandci, selling counterfeit high grade pipes, as I know you are very familiar with. I know you investigated it and got to the bottom of it to flush this phony out.

    Anyways, I won an H.S Studio pipe over the weekend off ebay... from this benandci character. I knew the history with the seller and I knew the pipe was basically a no name, low to mid grade pipe but I thought it had a great aesthetic and great looking finish on it, especially for the price. I got it for like $65, shipped. Not sure if they're still using Phoenix as a middle man jump off point in the USA from China, but they are still located in Phoenix. Your website is actually the only credible site and the only site besides ebay that carries their pipes and I know you are legit and well respected. That is why I emailed you for info. I'll post the link to ebay for the original listing of the pipe I won and attach the pics. If you don't mind and you happen to have the time, could you check it out and tell me what you think? Also, I'd love to hear your experience with the HS pipe once you run a couple bowls through it. I'd certainly appreciate it.

    I should be getting the pipe at the end of the week or early next week, so I'll shoot you an email as well and let you know my thoughts about appearance, construction, finish, smokability and etc. Thanks again for the response, Marty. Take care!

    Pics are attached.

    Here is the listing of the pipe on ebay:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/HUKEs-pipe-unsmoked-/221420872003?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEWNX%3AIT&_trksid=p2047675.l2557&nma=true&si=9flR34Sy0Vy8NNmTH7M4dVr8NU0%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc

    -Corey"

    I will let y'all know if/when he responds. I don't think what HS Studio is doing in terms of copying other people's designs is dishonest as it is done all the time in the pipe world as well as in tons of other areas. I do think it is dishonest and completely unacceptable to falsely identify a pipe with someone else's branding, no matter how good it may be, and sell it unknowingly for profit. At the end of the day, I think the pipe looks great from the pics provided and hope it smokes as good as it looks.

    One last thing, I also emailed the seller yesterday for more information on the HS Studio pipes he has listed and have yet to hear back from him. For now, the saga continues...

    Posted 5 years ago #
  14. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    Ok y'all, so i got the pipe in earlier than expected on Wednesday afternoon. My first impressions were that the pipe was a lot smaller than i had thought. It is by far the smallest and lightest pipe in my collection. I took and posted a lot of pictures so you all could really get a feel for the quality or lack thereof (whichever is your opinion) and the size of the pipe. even though small, it feels great in the hand and as a clencher in the mouth. The pics i took tell just about all you need to know about its construction, as was my intention. I packed the bowl up with some Hal O' The Wynd and got to puffing. The bowl lasted a lot longer than i thought it would, providing a good hour long smoke. It smokes just fine and actually smoked right down to the fine white ash it produced with no problem whatsoever. I'm glad i bought this pipe because i needed a smaller pipe with a smaller bowl, as most of my pipes have medium-large to large bowls. It was definitely a risk but it paid off and i definitely think i got my money's worth. I have only smoked 1 bowl in it, so i will update this thread after i run a few more bowls through it and let y'all know if anything has changed. It came with a nice soft leather draw stringed sock with a very soft microfiber type lining on the inside.

    If anyone is on the fence about purchasing one of the HS Studio pipes, based on my own experience so far i would recommend giving them a shot. The shipping was fast and i don't think there is any possible way it could have come from China in 3 business days. It might have been made there, but i think they are stocked in Arizona where the seller says he is based out of. The seller never did answer my questions i messaged him, which is pretty rude and inconsiderate in my opinion. I'm not sure if i will rate him down on stars for that one, i'll probably let it slide and it was not that big of a deal. As long as the pipe continues to smoke well, i don't care who made it and where they made it. I think it looks damn good and so far, smokes up to par.

    I hope others can benefit from this thread in the future if they are thinking about acquiring a pretty solid pipe for pretty cheap. Sorry for the number of pics. Cheers!

    Posted 5 years ago #
  15. fadingdaylight

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    Thanks for the update, I was really wondering how this was going to turn out for you. Glad to hear it went pretty well. I may just go ahead and get one too. I have seen some really nice Huge Stone pipes on ebay.

    - Jason
    "Lost in thought and lost in time... While the seeds of life and the seeds of change were planted... Outside the rain fell dark and slow... While I pondered on this dangerous but irresistible pastime..."
    Posted 5 years ago #
  16. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    Sure thing Jason, I'm glad i could help you out and hopefully it works out for you if you pull the trigger on one. I've been keeping my eye on them as well since i ordered it and i agree, there really are some good looking pipes coming out of there. Let us know if you do decide to get one and it would be great if you could post a review as well. I'd be curious to know if my experience was typical or not.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  17. misterlowercase

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    Thanks for the update.

    It actually looks very good.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  18. nurseman

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    That size was really popular with the newer carvers at the Chicago show . I was surprised since larger pipes seem to fetch more dollars online. The smaller pipes sold well so I guess it is like watches where they get bigger and smaller every few years.

    Women thrive on novelty and are easy meat for the commerce of fashion. Men prefer old pipes and torn jackets. --Anthony Burgess
    Posted 5 years ago #
  19. layinpipe

    layinpipe

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    Thanks lowercase, hope it helps if you decide to pull the trigger on one. Nurseman, that is an interesting thing to hear, thanks for posting. I definitely dig the small size of it, and man is it light in the hand and as a clencher! The blast and texture of it really stand out to me as well and help to enhance the lines throughout the shape.

    Posted 5 years ago #
  20. twoonefive

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    Thank you for documenting this and sharing it!

    Posted 5 years ago #
  21. metarzan

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    Perfect size if you ask me. Really unique and looks comfortable to hold or hang. Enjoy.

    Posted 5 years ago #

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